Detroit Pistons vs. Philadelphia 76ers
- Killian Hayes (11 percent owned in Yahoo!) has been a disappointment in his brief career, but there’s a chance he can help out your fantasy team. Ironically, the less he shoots the more value he provides because his field goal percentage is likely to remain low all season long. He can help in hard to get categories like assists and defensive stats though. Getting more minutes in his last two games has led to 3.5 dimes, 1.5 thefts, and 1.0 blocks per. He’s not worth a pickup yet, but don’t dismiss the thought.
- Kelly Olynyk may finally be getting the fantasy respect he deserves. Despite being out of sight, out of mind in Detroit for most NBA fans, Olynyk is rostered in 77 percent of leagues. He’s scored in double figures in all four games after tallying 14 last night. He also added three assists, two steals, a three, and a block, while hitting seven-of-eight from the line. If someone dropped him in the wake of Jerami Grant’s return, scoop him up.
- Shake Milton (seven percent owned) made his season debut for Philly, coming off the bench to score 13 points and dish out five assists in 16 minutes of action. As long as Ben Simmons is out, Milton has a chance to be fantasy-relevant, but it looks like Tyrese Maxey (16 points, six assists on six-of-eight from the floor) has entrenched himself as the starting point guard. Keep an eye on Milton, but he can stay on the wire for now.
- Joel Embiid had his first dominant outing of the year, reaching the 30-point and 10-rebound plateaus for the first time. Embiid finished with 30 and 18 while knocking down 13 out of 15 from the stripe. Looks like any chance to buy low is now gone.
Atlanta Hawks vs. Washington Wizards
- Atlanta’s wing carousel landed on Cam Reddish again, as the youngster scored 20 points in 27 minutes, with a steal and a block to boot. Reddish is one of the hottest pickups on the wire after scoring at least 17 points in four of his first five appearances. He’s up to 53 percent rostered (plus-23 percent in the last day). I’m not sold on his consistency, especially with Danilo Gallinari only adding to the glut of wings in the rotation, but he’s worth streaming while he’s hot.
- John Collins playing 38 minutes is potentially a huge development. He came in averaging just 26.5 MPG, but the Hawks went small with Collins at the 5 a lot in this one. It led to a huge game, as he went off for 28 points on a blistering 14-of-16 from the field, with 12 boards. If this isn’t a one-off and Collins gets to play 35 minutes with many of them coming at center—a configuration I think is definitely worth exploring for the team—we could be looking at another top-20 season for him. It might be worth trying to trade for him now.
- It’s too late to pick up Montrezl Harrell (up to 78 percent owned), who had his second consecutive monster game in the wake of Daniel Gafford’s injury. Harrell racked up 25 points, 13 rebounds, five assists, two steals, and a block with nary a miscue in 34 strong minutes. It doesn’t sound like Gafford will miss much time, so now might be the time to sell Harrell at his peak.
New York Knicks vs. Chicago Bulls
- We’re seeing an intriguing shift in Derrick Rose‘s game, as he’s suddenly pulling it from beyond the arc at a rate that resembles a modern guard. Over the course of his career, just 16.5 percent of Rose’s attempts have come from deep, but so far in this young season, that rate is all the way up to 42.3 percent. If he becomes a guy who averages two-plus treys per game, his value will skyrocket. Pick him up if it’s not too late (57 percent rostered).
- Though he’s not your typical microwave scorer sixth man, if Alex Caruso continues to get this much burn with Chicago (and looking at their depth chart, I don’t see that changing) he needs to be rostered. Caruso scored 10 points to go along with six assists and two steals in 33 minutes and is averaging a whopping 3.0 SPG so far. That alone means he should be owned in more than the 43 percent of leagues he’s currently being played in.
Utah Jazz vs. Houston Rockets
- Utah’s rotation is so well-defined there’s really no value to mine on the roster. One name to keep an eye on is Eric Paschall, just on the off chance the Jazz decide to shake things up and play him as a small-ball 5. After scoring a total of six points through his first three games, Paschall (one percent rostered) got going a little bit with 13 points on four-of-five shooting in 21 minutes of play. It probably doesn’t mean much, but keep it in the back of your mind.
- Jalen Green struggled with his shot again, bricking 13 of his 16 attempts and missing all eight of his triple tries. The silver lining was that he muscled his way to the foul line nine times, after not getting there at all in his first four contests. We know Green is capable of exploding offensively, but given the tough circumstance he’s in Houston, it will likely take time for those explosions to become regular. The Rockets are about to embark on a tough road trip against some of the West’s best. There could be a buy-low opportunity coming at the end of that if he puts up some more stinkers.
- Alperen Sengun has been the more productive of the Rockets’ rooks, posting a 14-point, three-steal night against the Jazz. Though Sengun has flashed some potential, as long as Houston is committed to playing both Christian Wood and Daniel Theis ahead of him, his value will be limited. He shouldn’t be owned in over 50 percent of leagues (as he is currently) until the Rockets pack it in and start the tank train later in the season.
San Antonio Spurs vs. Dallas Mavericks
- With Doug McDermott out injured, Lonnie Walker was elevated to the starting lineup. He didn’t disappoint, with 14 points, a pair of triples, a steal, and a block in 27 minutes. That’s the fourth time in five outings Walker registered at least 14 points, and he’s hit at least two treys in every single game. As long as McBuckets is on the shelf, Walker (34 percent rostered) is a must-add.
- Bryn Forbes played the McDermott role as the floor spacer, draining five treys in 20 minutes to score his 15 points. If you’re looking for a speculative add in the San Antonio backcourt, I would still prefer Devin Vassell (21 percent rostered), even though he scored just seven in 27 minutes on Thursday. Forbes (zero percent rostered) can still be ignored, despite the hot shooting night.
- Jalen Brunson continues to be a steadying presence off the Dallas bench, scoring 19 points on 8-for-15 shooting, with three triples, seven boards, and five dimes. He needs to be owned in more than just 30 percent of leagues.
- With Kristaps Porzingis being scratched from the lineup, Maxi Kleber had a fantasy manager’s delight off the bench. Kleber hit four threes to score his 12 points, while also hauling in 10 rebounds and swatting six shots in 29 productive minutes. He can provide great value as long as he’s getting the minutes, but he’s been 20 and below with a full roster available. It doesn’t seem like KP’s issue will keep him out long, so Kleber (10 percent owned) can stay on the wire for now, but he’s a clear streamer if you know the minutes will be there.
Memphis Grizzlies vs. Golden State Warriors
- As long as Dillon Brooks remains on the sidelines, De’Anthony Melton is a fringe top-50 fantasy player. Even on a night when his shot wasn’t falling (just 3-for-10 and seven points), Melton made fantasy magic with four swipes and three rejections. Now that he’s up to 66 percent owned, it’s probably too late to profit.
- Preseason darling Jordan Poole continues to be a roller coaster ride for fantasy managers. The Michigan product failed to crack double digits in the points column and committed six turnovers. His upside makes him a clear hold, but he may not be destined for stardom just yet.
- Damion Lee has turned into a reliable bench cog for the Warriors. After a 14-point outing that included four treys, Lee has now scored in double figures in all five games this season. He’s not doing much else yet, but he’s a good rebounder and can’t keep firing blanks in the steals column forever. Lee (nine percent rostered) is definitely on the streaming radar at least.