Friday night was an interesting night in the fantasy world. Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson led the Cavaliers to a win without LeBron James while the Warriors contingent threw up a slew of fine fantasy gems. Without further ado let’s get to the action.
Curry and Co. defeat the Raptors
Stephen Curry led the charge on Friday with a sweet 32 points and 12 assists as the Warriors bested the Raptors in a high-scoring affair. He added five triples to complete a stellar fantasy line. But he wasn’t the only Warrior to have a nice fantasy night. Marreese Speights pitched in 26 points with eight rebounds and Klay Thompson threw in 20 points with four triples and three blocks. Draymond Green may have been the most impressive of all as he logged a triple-double with 16 points, 13 assists, and 11 rebounds. The Raptors contingent wasn’t too shabby as Kyle Lowry, Lou Williams, and Greivis Vasquez all scored over 20 points.
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Durant continues to roll
After a 44-point explosion on New Year’s Eve, Kevin Durant extended his run of dominance on Friday with a 34 point outing against the Wizards. Durant shot a spectacular 12-18 from the field with four triples and eight rebounds. Durant is arguably the best fantasy player when healthy so hopefully this is the start of a long, healthy and productive run.
Pachulia steps up for Milwaukee
With Larry Sanders still out due to personal reasons and no timetable set for his return, Zaza Pachulia drew another start on Friday and responded with a double-double of 12 points and 14 rebounds. John Henson was also solid off the bench with 14 points, 10 boards, and two blocks so either one of these players could be worth a look as a fill-in. Henson has more upside but if Pachulia is starting he may have some more consistent runs. On the other side of the court, Donald Sloan started for the Pacers and put up 10 points, eight boards, and six assists. George Hill and C.J. Watson are both nursing injuries but neither looks to be too serious, making Sloan no more than a short-term option.
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Detroit owns New York
Brandon Jennings led the charge, scoring 29 points with four triples, as the Pistons took care of the Knicks on Friday. Andre Drummond pulled down 20 rebounds with ease and Jodie Meeks tallied 15 points off the bench as the Pistons straight up dominated New York. The Knicks were without Carmelo Anthony and the team looked dreadful, in fact, the Pistons were up by 30 points after three quarters. J.R. Smith took 20 shots to pick up the slack but only hit eight on his way to 22 points. Cole Aldrich was the lone bright spot as he tallied a double-double of 11 points and 14 rebounds. Aldrich has actually been a sneaky play as of late. Over his last six games he’s averaging 11 points and nine rebounds with two blocks per contest as well. He’s definitely worthy of a roster spot for his blocks and boards.
Rondo dominates homecoming game
Rajon Rondo returned to Boston for the first time since his trade and while he was treated with class before the contest, he shined thereafter. The point guard finished with a season-high 29 points on an efficient 12-19 shooting. He banged in an uncharacteristic five triples, adding six boards and five assist to complete a great line. Backcourt mate Monta Ellis was no slouch either, scoring 22 with five boards, four assists, and two steals.
Payton continues to make strides
Magic rookie point guard Elfrid Payton had a terrific showing on Friday, nearly leading his squad to a win over Brooklyn. Payton was all over the floor, dropping 16 points, 10 assists, nine rebounds, and three steals. Between Victor Oladipo and Payton, the Magic backcourt is still young and the chemistry definitely needs work, but signs are encouraging. Oladipo is the more consistent fantasy option but Payton is certainly worth owning in most formats. Meanwhile, on the other side of the floor, Deron Williams looked solid off the bench, putting up 16 points and seven dimes in nearly 30 minutes. Jarrett Jack started but was poor, scoring just six points with six turnovers. Williams should jump back into his starting role sooner rather than later. Jack remains a fringe stash.
Love and Thompson power Cavs to victory
With LeBron James out of action for the time being, the Cleveland frontcourt stepped up to give the Cavaliers a much needed win over the Hornets. Kevin Love led the way with 27 points, five boards and one block. He appeared to hurt his left knee briefly but stayed in the game and wound up playing 38 minutes. Starting center Tristan Thompson registered his fourth straight double-double, finishing with 14 points and 14 boards, adding three blocks for good measure. Kyrie Irving had a mixed bag game as he shot just 8-27 from the field but scored 23 points with three assists and four steals. Irving has been hot and cold this season but with James out for the next two weeks, fantasy owners should expect some quality performances from the point guard.
Exum steps up for Jazz
With Alec Burks out for the season and Rodney Hood banged up, Patrick Christopher drew the start at shooting guard but dislocated his right knee early on and did not return. In his stead, Dante Exum got his workload and scored a career-high 13 points, three triples and three steals. It’s slim pickings for the Jazz at two guard right now so Exum is a worth a speculative add in deeper leagues.
Teague stars for Hawks in win
While the Jazz struggled, Jeff Teague was busy leading the Hawks to a win over Utah. The point guard scored 26 points with eight assists, two triples, and three steals. Paul Millsap was also solid for Atlanta as he put up a double-double of 15 points and 11 rebounds. Teague in particular has been hot as of late, averaging nearly 25 per contest over his last three. He’s certainly in a sell high window right now but his overall production makes him a player you’d likely want to ride with for the duration of the season.
Rockets dreadful as a unit
The Pelicans blew out the Rockets on Friday thanks to an overall team effort. Anthony Davis had a pedestrian game while Tyreke Evans and Ryan Anderson each dropped in over 20 points. The bigger story however was the performance of the entire Rockets team. The starters were abysmal, scoring a combined 36 points. The Pelicans gout out to a 17 point halftime lead and were up by nearly 30 at points during the second stanza. It was simply an off game for Houston and the likes of James Harden and Dwight Howard should get on track during the next one.
Green leads Suns to win
Gerald Green scored a team-high 21 points on Friday to carry the Suns to a win over the Sixers. Green knocked down three triples and has been on a nice scoring roll as of late. He’s averaging just over 17 per game over his last three. Meanwhile, K.J. McDaniels started for Philly but was unimpressive, finishing with four points on 2-8 shooting. He also had four of his attempts swatted away and looked lost at times on offense. Tony Wroten was a bright spot for the Sixers as he scored 28 points with four three-pointers.