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There are eight games in the National Basketball Association on Sunday, Feb. 23 (with six evening games). The L.A. Clippers-Oklahoma City (1:00 pm ET) and Chicago-Miami (3:30 pm ET) games are nationally televised on ABC, and the Houston-Phoenix 9:00pm ET) game is nationally televised on ESPN.
(FanDuel.com salaries in parentheses)
SO YOU WANT A BIG TICKET ITEM?
Dwight Howard, C, Houston ($9300 at PHO): Howard rolls into the Valley of the Sun looking for another big stat line. He has 41 or more Fantasy points in six of his past seven games, including 55.8 Fantasy points in the last meeting with the Suns Feb. 5 in Houston. In that game, Howard posted 34 points, 14 rebounds, three steals and a pair of blocked shots in 39 minutes. He worked down low, mostly unfettered against a Suns middle which is a little bit soft. Howard has 11 or more boards in seven straight games, and at least two blocked shots in seven of the past eight. Those are worth two points apiece, as are steals, of which he has nine over the past seven outings.
If you spend big up top, you’re going to need some fillers to bring down your average per player salary. Check out these steals from the bargain bin:
Spencer Hawes, C, Cleveland ($6100 vs WAS): Hawes came over in a deadline deal with the 76ers, and he made his debut in Toronto Friday. Hawes posted seven points with 10 rebounds, three blocked shots and three assists in 26 minutes coming off the pine. C Anderson Varejao (assorted injuries) has been ruled OUT, so Hawes will see considerable minutes in his second game with the team.
Victor Oladipo, SG, Orlando ($6200 at TOR): Oladipo was giant in Friday’s game against New York, rolling for 30 points, 14 assists, nine rebounds and two steals in a double-overtime victory. It was night and day from his previous three efforts, where he totaled just 39.7 Fantasy points combined. Look for the rookie to come down in the 28-32 Fantasy point range in this one, which isn’t bad production at this salary level.
Chandler Parsons, SF, Houston ($7200 at PHO): Parsons is on a roll lately, especially on the offensive end. He has 18 or more points in each of his past four games, and five of his past six, including a 19-point effort in the last meeting with Phoenix back on Feb. 6 in Houston. Parsons totaled 40.4 Fantasy points in that meeting with the Suns, and he could come close to that type of production again in this one.
Deron Williams, PG, Brooklyn ($6500 at LAL): The Lakers have struggled all season on defense, ranking 29th in the NBA in points allowed (105.9). Williams hasn’t been the same player we’ve grown accustomed to seeing in previous years, but he has put together a nice little stretch lately with 23.3 or more Fantasy points in five straight games, and eight of the past nine.
Chase Budinger, SF, Minnesota ($3600 at POR): The Trail Blazers have a poor scoring defense, allowing 103.7 points per game. Budinger has posted 12 or more points in four of his past five games, including 19 points, five rebounds and 25.5 Fantasy points in his last meeting with the Trail Blazers Feb. 8 in Minneapolis. Budinger has managed 18.7 or more Fantasy points in four of his past five outings.
Jarrett Jack, PG, Cleveland ($3900 vs WAS): Jack will see starter’s minutes with SG Dion Waiters (knee) and swingman C.J. Miles (ankle) both already ruled OUT for Sunday’s game with the Wizards. Jack is averaging 23.6 Fantasy points over the past four games. At this price level, if he simply hits his recent average he’ll exceed salary expectations.
VEGAS FACT OF THE NIGHT
The Sacramento Kings and Denver Nuggets will do battle in the Mile High City, and the game could be a high-scoring affair. Vegas has the total set at 210, and it is very possible that total is easily eclipsed. The ‘over’ has cashed in six of the past eight meetings in this series. The ‘over’ is also 6-0 in Denver’s past six meetings against Pacific Division foes, and 6-1 in their past seven against teams with a losing straight-up record. The ‘over’ is 5-1-2 in Sacramento’s past eight games working on zero days’ rest, and 5-1-1 in their past seven games against Northwest Division opponents.