There are a handful of injury concerns heading into the upcoming week for some big-name Fantasy Basketball options.
Dallas Mavericks G Rajon Rondo (face) was kicked in the grill Saturday night in Orlando by a teammate while fighting for a loose ball, and he has been ruled out for Monday’s game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. It didn’t sound terribly concerning at first, but the fact he is already ruled out for Monday, leaving him with a potential three games, makes him a risky play for those in weekly Fantasy formats. If you’re a Daily Fantasy player, this news bodes well for G Devin Harris’ value Monday, and as long as Rondo is on the shelf. G Monta Ellis will also see a lot more action on the offensive end.
Miami Heat swingman Luol Deng (calf) missed Sunday’s game against Boston, as he has been dealing with a calf injury. However, according to published reports, he plans to play Tuesday. Still, with a level of uncertainty, and just three games on the upcoming slate, Fantasy owners in cumulative leagues might want to go another way just to be on the safe side. Also in Miami, Dwyane Wade (hamstring) is not on the current four-game road trip due to a hamstring issue, and the team’s official website reported that he is likely to be sidelined two to three weeks. That’s great news for the short-term Fantasy outlooks for swingman Danny Granger, Deng (when healthy), as well as rookie Shabazz Napier and Mario Chalmers.
The news is better in New Orleans, as PF/C Anthony Davis (groin) is considered probable for Monday’s contest against the red-hot Atlanta Hawks. With the news that A.D. will be back, C Alexis Ajinca sees his short-term Fantasy appeal dry up. PF/C Ryan Anderson will remain a solid Fantasy option, but he also sees a dip in value with Davis back in the mix.
As far as the Minnesota Timberwolves are concerned, there are several injury issues – both good, and bad. T’Wolves PG Ricky Rubio (ankle) appears on the verge of returning Monday night, and head coach Flip Saunders told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that Rubio is expected to play Monday. He has missed 42 games, so expect some rust. However, get him in the active Fantasy lineup if you’ve been patiently waiting this long.
Teammate G Zach LaVine (ankle) is considered doubtful for Monday’s tilt, and it’s probably a good idea for Fantasy owners to steer far clear of that situation. With Rubio expected back, G Mo Williams playing well and even G Lorenzo Brown in the mix, there is no sense to rush LaVine.
Teams with four games (22): Atlanta, Boston, Brooklyn, Charlotte, Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, Golden State, L.A. Clippers, Memphis, Milwaukee, Minnesota, New Orleans, Oklahoma City, Orlando, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, Sacramento, Toronto, Utah, Washington
Teams with three games (8): Chicago, Denver, Houston, Indiana, L.A. Lakers, Miami, New York, San Antonio
MON Atlanta at New Orleans (8:00pm NBATV)
TUE Miami at Detroit (7:30pm NBATV), Utah at Portland (10:00pm NBATV)
WED Chicago at Houston (8:00pm ESPN), Dallas at Golden State (10:30pm ESPN)
THU L.A. Clippers at Cleveland (8:00pm TNT), Phoenix at Portland (10:30pm TNT)
FRI L.A. Clippers at Toronto (7:00pm ESPN), Miami at San Antonio (9:30pm ESPN)
SAT Chicago at New Orleans (7:00pm WGN/NBATV)
SUN L.A. Clippers at Oklahoma City (1:00pm ABC), L.A. Lakers at Cleveland (3:30pm ABC), San Antonio at Toronto (7:00pm NBATV)
* All Times Eastern (ET)
It seems like everything is going great in Boston, as the New England Patriots obviously just won the World Series. The Celtics have a very favorable schedule ahead of them, too. Home games against the defensively challenged Denver Nuggets and Philadelphia, as well as a game against the awful New York Knicks on the road should mean strong Fantasy stat lines for the usual suspects in Beantown.
The Cleveland Cavaliers also have been dealt a very favorable hand for the upcoming game, with a home schedule highlighted by the Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Lakers. If you’re a Fantasy owners of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Love, J.R. Smith and other useful Cavs, it is going to be a fruitful week.
There are only eight teams with a three-game week in cumulative head-to-head formats. However, if you’re looking for a team with an unfavorable schedule it is definitely the Houston Rockets, who face the Chicago Bulls, Milwaukee Bucks and Portland Trail Blazers, three teams allowing less than 100.0 points per game each. James Harden (knee) left Saturday’s game with a sore knee, but he was able to return and finish the game, so there shouldn’t be any concerns despite that pesky ‘+’ next to his name thanks to your Fantasy provider.
If you need help in specific categories in Rotisserie Fantasy Hoops play, you’ve come to the right place. Check out these guys, who should be available in your league, to help out in certain areas.
POINTS PER GAME
Aaron Brooks, PG, Chicago (13.3 PPG past 11 games)
Patrick Patterson, PF, Toronto (9.2 PPG past 12 games)
Beno Udrih, PG, Memphis (9.0 PPG past 10 games)
Anthony Tolliver, PF, Detroit (8.9 PPG past 11 games)
Jerami Grant, SF, Philadelphia (8.4 PPG past 12 games)
REBOUNDS PER GAME
Ian Mahinmi, C, Indiana (7.6 RPG past 10 games)
Carl Landry PF, Sacramento (7.0 RPG past four games)
Robert Sacre, C, L.A. Lakers (7.0 RPG past six games)
Lou Amundson, PF, New York (6.9 RPG past eight games)
P.J. Tucker, SF, Phoenix (6.8 RPG past nine games)
ASSISTS PER GAME
Lorenzo Brown, PG, Minnesota (5.0 APG past three games)
Dennis Schroeder, PG, Atlanta (4.6 APG past 10 games)
Joe Ingles, SF, Utah (4.1 APG past nine games)
Brian Roberts, PG, Charlotte (3.8 APG past eight games)
Donald Sloan, PG, Indiana (3.7 APG past seven games)
STEALS PER GAME
Joe Ingles, SF, Utah (1.8 SPG past nine games)
P.J. Tucker, SF, Phoenix (1.8 SPG past nine games)
Nick Calathes, PG, Memphis (1.7 SPG past 10 games)
Tyler Johnson, SG, Miami (1.7 SPG past three games)
Ronnie Price, PG, L.A. Lakers (1.6 SPG past five games)
BLOCKED SHOTS PER GAME
Lou Amundson, PF, New York (1.9 BPG past eight games)
Alexis Ajinca, C, New Orleans (1.6 BPG past nine games)
Jerami Grant, SF, Philadelphia (1.5 BPG past 12 games)
Jason Maxiell, PF, Charlotte (1.2 BPG past six games)
Robert Sacre, C, L.A. Lakers (1.2 BPG past six games)
3-POINTERS MADE PER GAME
Aaron Brooks, PG, Chicago (23 3PT past 11 games)
Patty Mills, PG, San Antonio (18 3PT past 10 games)
Patrick Patterson, PF, Toronto (15 3PT past 12 games)
Marcus Thornton, PG, Boston (15 3PT past 11 games)
Anthony Tolliver, PF, Detroit (15 3PT past 11 games)
Jerami Grant, SF, Philadelphia (15 3PT past 12 games)
(statistics through Jan. 31, 2015)