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The Week Ahead

The Week Ahead: Week 10

by Jonas Nader

Week 10 Schedule: Games Played






2 Games: DEN


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Week 10 Streaming Schedule:


Monday (8 Games): MIL @ DET, PHX @ NYK, UTA @ HOU, SAC @ MIN, CHI @ OKC, PHI @ SAS, MEM @ GSW, POR @ LAC


Tuesday (4 Games): CLE @ IND, WAS @ ATL, LAL @ BKN, DAL @ DEN


Wednesday (12 Games): CLE @ CHA, SAS @ ORL, NYK @ PHI, PHX @ BOS, IND @ TOR, BKN @ CHI, WAS @ HOU, NOP @ MIL, DET @ MIN, GSW @ UTA, MEM @ POR, OKC @ SAC


Thursday (2 Games): HOU @ MIA, DAL @ LAC


Friday (10 Games): DET @ CHA, CLE @ TOR, IND @ BKN, ATL @ NYK, MIL @ BOS, ORL @ CHI, MIN @ SAS, UTA @ POR, MEM @ SAC, NOP @ LAL


Saturday (7 Games): DEN @ LAC, PHX @ WAS, TOR @ PHI, MIL @ MIA, SAS @ HOU, DAL @ GSW, OKC @ UTA


Sunday (11 Games): ATL @ DET, WAS @ IND, CHA @ BOS, PHX @ BKN, CHI @ CLE, MIA @ ORL, NOP @ SAC, MIN @ OKC, LAC @ GSW, DAL @ POR, MEM @ LAL





Sunday (Dec. 16) - Monday: Knicks, 76ers, Kings


Monday-Tuesday: None


Tuesday-Wednesday: Nets, Cavaliers, Pacers, Wizards


Wednesday-Thursday: Rockets


Thursday-Friday: None


Friday-Saturday: Bucks, Spurs, Raptors, Jazz


Saturday-Sunday: Mavericks, Warriors, Clippers, Heat, Thunder, Suns, Wizards


Sunday - Monday (Dec. 24): None



Schedule Notes:


There are 19 teams with four games this week, 10 teams with three games and one team (Denver) with two games. Luckily for the Nuggets, both of their games are on quality streaming days. 


The following teams have front-loaded schedules with three games from Monday-Thursday: Rockets


The following teams have back-loaded schedules with three games from Thursday-Sunday: Mavericks, Clippers, Heat


Apart from the teams mentioned above, the following teams play three games in four nights at some point this week: Nets (Tuesday-Friday), Cavaliers (Tuesday-Friday), Pacers (Tuesday-Friday), Rockets (Wednesday-Saturday), Bucks (Wednesday-Saturday), Spurs (Wednesday-Saturday), Raptors (Wednesday-Saturday), Jazz (Wednesday-Saturday). 


There are three days with double-digit games this week (Wednesday, Friday and Sunday), so Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday are our quality streaming days. 


The following teams have the most quality streaming days this week: Mavericks (3), Rockets (3), Clippers (3), Nuggets (2), Warriors (2), Heat (2), Bucks (2), Thunder (2), 76ers (2), Suns (2), Spurs (2), Jazz (2), Wizards (2). 



Waiver-Wire Pickups:


*These are guys you should consider keeping for the long haul. To qualify these players have to be available in at least 50% of Yahoo Leagues. 


Kelly Oubre is owned in 53% of leagues and did not qualify for this list, but it doesn’t hurt to double check your wire now that he’s in Phoenix. 


Kevin Huerter (9%)- He’s one of the hottest shooters in the NBA right now, hitting 25 of 51 triples since Nov. 18. The rookie has scored 19 points in back-to-back games and has quietly been a top-50 player in 9-category leagues over the past two weeks with 12.8 points, 3.2 assists, 2.8 rebounds, 1.4 steals, 1.0 blocks and 2.6 triples on 53.7% shooting. He won’t shoot this good forever, but his touches/minutes are way up on a team that has every reason to develop him. 


Marvin Williams (45%)- Williams has been outstanding since returning from a shoulder injury, putting up 14.0 points, 7.5 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.5 blocks and 3.3 triples on 44% shooting over his last four games. He was unusable at the start of the season but has finally turned things around and could post mid-round numbers like we’ve seen in the past. In fact, he’s been a top-60 value over his past nine games. 


Cody Zeller (27%)- Zeller has been one of my favorite streamers all season, but he deserves a promotion to the waiver-wire pickups after his best game of the campaign with 21 points, 13 rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block and a triple on 9-of-10 shooting. Feel free to put an asterisk on that game because it was against the Knicks, but Zeller has been a steady top-85 player in 9-category leagues and the Willy Hernangomez breakout simply isn’t happening. If the Hornets remain competitive, Zeller’s value will be safe. 


Monte Morris (22%)- He’s still not getting the attention he deserves for being arguably the best backup PG in the league. He ranks 9th in the NBA in turnover percentage which is unheard of for a young point guard, and he has top-90 value over the past two weeks with 12.8 points, 4.0 assists, 2.8 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.8 triples in 25.4 minutes. The key for Monte is that he’s getting several minutes alongside Jamal Murray and that should continue with that combo posting a +8.1 net rating. 


Mason Plumlee (16%)- Since Paul Millsap (toe) went down three games ago, Plumlee has averaged 8.0 points, 5.7 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.7 blocks and 1.0 steals in just under 25 minutes per night. He fouled out of one of those games, so his minutes should be even higher going forward because Trey Lyles can’t throw the ball into the ocean right now. Plumlee is an all-around stat stuffer, but is hitting just 45.6% of his free throws this season and the Nuggets only play twice. 


Josh Hart (50%)- Even though the Lakers whiffed on the Trevor Ariza sweepstakes, I’d imagine that they are still looking to move on from Kentavious Caldwell-Pope. Hart has seen a boost in minutes with Brandon Ingram (ankle) out, and the KCP rumors gives him some stash appeal to go with the short-term boost. In his last outing, Hart made 6-of-8 from the field for 15 points with two rebounds, one assist, two blocks and two 3-pointers in 29 minutes against the Rockets. 


Noah Vonleh (43%)- Yes his production has been all over the place, but his assist totals are eye-popping with 5.0 per game over his last five outings. He has 8.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.0 steals, 0.6 blocks and 1.0 triples in that same span, hitting 45.2% from the field. Mitchell Robinson is having trouble staying on the floor with foul issues and a recent ankle injury, and Vonleh has even taken minutes away from Enes Kanter. With a clear path to value and a nice stat set on a tanking team, Vonleh should be owned everywhere despite some ups and downs. 


Emmanuel Mudiay (26%)- To his credit, Mudiay is taking full advantage of his most recent opportunity as the starting PG. Trey Burke (knee) is still on the shelf and Frank Ntilikina tweaked his ankle on Friday, so we know the minutes are going to be there. In 16 total starts, Mudiay has been decent with 15.3 points, 3.9 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 0.8 steals, 1.3 triples and 2.1 turnovers on 46.7% shooting. The FG% isn’t sustainable and his value could titanic at a moment’s notice, but he’s an option for PG-needy owners. 


De’Anthony Melton (27%)- One of my favorite rookie PGs will have to deal with the return of Devin Booker (hamstring) on Saturday, and the Suns just traded for Austin Rivers. I’m still confident that the Suns will keep Melton with the starters, as his addition to the first unit has actually made them competent on the defensive end — since he entered the starting five the Suns’ defense is ranked 16th in defensive rating and 1st in steals (h/t @esidery). He’s been flirting with top-100 numbers over his past six games and that includes a scoreless dud in his last game. I’m holding on tight while we see how this plays out. 


Mikal Bridges (10%)- It looked like Bridges was heading for a monster workload with Trevor Ariza leaving, but Kelly Oubre will certainly complicate things. However, it sounds like the Suns are open to flipping Oubre to another team in the near future, as they don’t want to pay his hefty price tag this summer. With decent per-36 minute averages of 11.4 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 2.0 steals, 0.4 blocks and 1.8 triples in a low-usage role, Bridges does have some stash appeal while we see how the dust settles. 


Richaun Holmes (24%)- The dude is simply a beast and he hasn’t let his backup role hold him back. His per-minute production has been off the charts, allowing him to return top-60 value in just 21.3 minutes over the past two weeks with 11.9 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 0.9 steals and 1.9 blocks on 66.7% from the field and 78.9% from the line. He’s taking a few minutes away from Deandre Ayton, and he could be a league winner if the Suns ever give him some run at PF. 


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Nemanja Bjelica (40%)- This one is pretty simple. Bjelica has been a top-70 player on a per-game basis in just 24 minutes per game this season, averaging 11.4 points, 5.7 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.9 steals, 0.6 blocks and 1.6 triples on an efficient 54.5% from the field. With Marvin Bagley (knee) looking at a two-week absence, Bjelica will have a much safer floor and could see 30+ minutes a night barring a surprise from coach Joerger. 


Kelly Olynyk (33%)- I don’t need to make this complicated. Kelly Olynyk has been a top-50 player for the past two weeks with 14.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.7 blocks and 2.3 triples. I dropped him earlier in the season when he was playing like Byron Mullens and I definitely regret it. Grab him wherever you can, as he has looked very motivated since his DNP-CD. 


Derrick Jones Jr. (2%)- Sticking in Miami again for this one. DJJ has been the biggest surprise of the past couple weeks and has also been a top 50(!) value with 8.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.8 steals, 1.4 blocks and 0.4 triples on 57.1% shooting in 21.9 minutes. It looks like coach Erik Spoelstra is happy to leave him in the rotation even with the Heat getting healthy, and I’m going to take a flier on the uber-athletic forward for his upside in defensive stats alone. 



Streaming Options:


*These are guys you can dump straight back to the waiver wire after getting a game or two of value out of them.


Marcus Smart (27%)- Has really slowed down on offense, hitting 31.4% of his shots for 6.4 points over his last five. With that said, he’s still getting plenty of minutes and has 5.0 assists and 2.8 steals in that span. 


Daniel Theis (2%)- Theis has actually been a top-55 player since Al Horford (knee) went down, posting averages of 13.5 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.0 triples on 55.6% from the field and 76.9% from the line in 22.4 minutes over his last four. The only reason I’m not calling him a permanent pickup is because Horford could return soon, but my guess is that we’ll get another week of value out of Theis. Just keep in mind that those numbers above are slightly inflated due to a matchup with the Bulls when he went bonkers. 


Robert Williams (2%)- Yes it’s a small sample size, but you simply can’t ignore 6.5 blocks per 36 minutes. The Time Lord is probably looking at consistent minutes in the teens while Horford is out. 


Rodions Kurucs (1%)- He scored a career-high 15 points with six rebounds, one assist and one 3-pointer in 30 minutes in his first start on Friday with Allen Crabbe out, surely giving the coaching staff something to think about. If Kurucs sticks with the starting five (I like his chances), feel free to hold him while we see how this plays out. He has per-36 minute averages of 19.4 points, 7.9 rebounds, 1.2 steals and 1.5 triples. 


Ed Davis (7%)- Still a solid two-category streamer for his FG% (59.3) and rebounds (8.3). 


Alec Burks (15%)- Had a rough two-game stretch with a combined four points on 1-of-14 shooting, but bounced back nicely vs. the Bucks on Friday with 12 points, nine rebounds, one assist, one steal and one triple in 27 minutes. 


Rodney Hood (19%)- Has been borderline awful for most of the season, but has a combined 43 points and five triples in his last two games. 


Tyreke Evans (46%)- Went from a low-end asset as a fill-in starter for Oladipo to a low-end streamer as a reserve for the Pacers. May not see 20 minutes most nights. 


Cory Joseph (9%)- Averaging 8.8 points, 4.2 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 0.8 steals over his last five games. There aren’t many PGs worth streaming so we can’t be picky. 


JaMychal Green (34%)- He’s good enough to stream with 12.4 points, 6.6 rebounds, 0.8 blocks, 0.8 steals and 1.4 triples over his last five. He’s getting 24.0 minutes a night in that span, but that should drop when coach J.B. Bickerstaff stops pretending that Jaren Jackson Jr. isn’t already twice the player Green is. 


Tyler Johnson (22%)- After three weeks of being invisible, Johnson emerged again with 17 points,  five rebounds, four assists, one steal and four 3-pointers in 31 minutes against the Grizzlies on Friday. There’s a lot of opportunity with Goran Dragic (knee) out indefinitely, but Johnson isn’t easy to trust. 


Tim Frazier (23%)- An excellent assist specialist with 8.0 per game over his last five. Stat set is very limited beyond that. 


Terrence Ross (46%)- Has gone ice cold from the field, but he can heat up at a moment’s notice and could be a mid-round value again once that happens. 


D.J. Augustin (34%)- Really starting to trend down with 9.0 points, 3.2 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.6 triples over his last five. Has zero blocks to his name this season and hasn’t recorded a steal in seven straight. Simply a 3-category streamer. 


T.J. McConnell (4%)- He will be irrelevant when Jimmy Butler (groin) comes back, but has been a great streamer lately with 11.8 points, 5.0 assists, 2.5 rebounds and 1.0 steals in his last four games. 


Furkan Korkmaz (2%)- Has eight triples in his last four games, something to keep in mind if Butler remains out. 


Jakob Poeltl (23%)- He’s actually been a top-90 player in 18.9 minutes per game for the past two weeks with 8.4 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.6 blocks. Coach Popovich has been talking him up and his minutes are finally trending up. 


Fred VanVleet (45%)- He’s a no-brainer plug-and-play every time Kyle Lowry (thigh) or Kawhi Leonard (frequent DNPs) sits.