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Naz (Reid) is coming

Naz Reid

Naz Reid

Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota was without Rudy Gobert on Wednesday, as he aggravated a groin injury during Monday’s loss to the Jazz. Those who follow fantasy basketball knew what that meant: it was time to add Naz Reid. Rostered in 32% of Yahoo leagues, he’s been a 13th-round player in 9-cat formats over the last two weeks. That isn’t great value, but Reid has produced some high-level performances when given the opportunity to play extended minutes. He was limited by foul trouble during Minnesota’s loss to Denver, but Reid still accounted for 17 points, three rebounds, two assists, and three blocks in 26 minutes. And with Minnesota playing two more games this week, now is a good time to add Reid if you didn’t before Wednesday’s action.

Also worth mentioning is Kyle Anderson, who comes in just above the 40% threshold at 43% in Yahoo leagues. A top-40 player over the last two weeks, he recorded a line of 13 points, 11 rebounds, eight assists, four steals, one block, and one 3-pointer. SloMo’s been in the starting lineup consistently since early December, and that won’t change until Karl-Anthony Towns (calf) is cleared to return. He should be rostered in a far higher percentage of leagues. With that, let’s get into a few more names from Wednesday’s nine-game night, including three players impacted by injuries suffered by teammates.

Dennis Smith Jr.(10%)

Smith didn’t enter Wednesday’s slate as a viable fantasy option in most leagues, but that changed during the third quarter of the Hornets’ win in Houston. Starting point guard LaMelo Ball had to be helped off the court after injuring his left ankle for the third time this season. The two prior injuries cost him a total of 24 games, and with the Hornets boasting one of the NBA’s worst records, there’s even less reason for the team to rush Ball back. That opens the door for Smith, who scored nine points (2-of-8 FGs, 5-of-6 FTs) with two rebounds, even assists, and one steal in 29 minutes off the bench. He’s an obvious add in fantasy leagues in light of the Ball injury.

Tari Eason (16%) and Jae’Sean Tate (12%)

Houston also had to deal with a key injury, as Jabari Smith exited during the third quarter after spraining his right ankle. With KJ Martin (19%) already starting for the injured Kevin Porter Jr., Eason and Tate appear to be the players who would benefit the most if Smith were to miss additional time. Eason (7/5/1 with one 3-pointer in 19 minutes) was the more productive of the two, but Tate (4/4/1/0/1 in 24 minutes) should not be overlooked, especially with Houston’s lack of credible playmakers. Eason may be the better choice moving forward, especially with an eye toward “silly season,” but there isn’t a massive gap between him and Tate.

Richaun Holmes (2%)

The Kings have been dealing with a stomach bug recently, and that malady sidelined Domantas Sabonis, Alex Len, and Matthew Dellavedova for Wednesday’s game against the Lakers. The absence of the first two meant that Holmes would make his first start of the season, and he turned the clock back to when he was a lock to be rostered in fantasy leagues. In 30 minutes, Holmes accounted for 16 points (7-of-7 FGs, 2-of-2), 11 rebounds, and one assist as the Kings beat the Lakers in Los Angeles. It would have been nice to get some defensive stats, but beggars can’t be choosers, given Holmes’ limited minutes when Sabonis has been healthy. Could this effort be the first step toward Holmes claiming the backup center job as his own? We’ll see.

Reggie Bullock (6%)

Dallas welcomed back Dorian Finney-Smith (22%) and Josh Green (1%) for their game against the Hawks, but the ankle injury that sidelined Tim Hardaway Jr. opened up additional opportunities for Bullock. He shot 7-of-11 from the field in the loss to Atlanta, scoring 18 points with two rebounds, two assists, one steal, and four 3-pointers in 36 minutes. Given Dallas’ lack of shooting, Bullock is of greater importance as long as Hardaway remains sidelined. He got off to a slow start to the season, but Bullock is averaging 9.4 points and 2.6 3-pointers per game over the last two weeks.

Kenrich Williams (7%)

At this point in the season, Oklahoma City appears to have four locks to start if healthy: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey, Lu Dort, and Jalen Williams. The fifth spot has been tricky, with Mark Daigneault using matchups to dictate his choice most nights. Kenny Hustle received the nod Wednesday night, and he finished the blowout of the Pacers with 12 points, five rebounds, a career-high 10 assists, one steal, two blocks, and two 3-pointers in 22 minutes. The “musical chairs” nature of that spot and Williams’ minutes make him a tough sell in fantasy. If anything, he’ll be a solid DFS option when given the opportunity to start.

Isaac Okoro (4%)

Okoro has been a top-75 player in 9-cat formats over the last week, with Wednesday’s performance being one of his best of the season. Shooting 6-of-6 from the field, he finished the Cavaliers’ one-point loss to the Grizzlies with 17 points, three rebounds, one assist, two blocks, and four 3-pointers (tying his career-high) in 34 minutes. Caris LeVert (42%) is the clear add with Donovan Mitchell (groin) sidelined, but Okoro’s night was a small step towards fantasy relevance. However, the inconsistent production makes him a player to watch as opposed to one who should be picked up in the aftermath of his performance Wednesday night.