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  • OKC Power Forward #17
    Aleksej Pokusevski suffered a right ankle sprain Tuesday during an offseason workout with the Thunder, and he will be re-evaluated in six weeks, according to Rylan Stiles of Locked on Thunder.
    Poku missed the FIBA World Cup due to an arm injury sustained in late May, and given his new injury, there’s a chance he’s not ready for the start of training camp. It’s a make-or-break season for Poku, who has appeared in just 140 games in three seasons and will play in the final year of his rookie contract in 2023-24.
  • OKC Shooting Guard #5
    Luguentz Dort shot 5-of-9 from the field in Thursday’s 133-110 win over the Lakers, scoring 12 points with seven rebounds, three assists, two steals, one block, and two 3-pointers in 28 minutes.
    While a key member of the Thunder starting lineup due to his defensive prowess, Dort tends to be overlooked in fantasy basketball circles. And with good reason. He’s yet to finish a season ranked within the top 100 in either 8- or 9-cat formats, with poor shooting limiting his value. Well, things may be changing. Dort’s shooting 45.6% from the field and 78.9% from the foul line this season, a major reason why he’s currently ranked just outside the top 100 in 9-cat formats. Dort’s value slips a bit in 8-cat due to his not being a high-turnover guy, but his season-long production is at a level that can be used to justify considering him in some standard leagues. This isn’t the best time to add Dort, as he’s been quiet recently (Thursday notwithstanding), and OKC only plays once more in Week 6 and twice in Week 7. But he is worth tracking in the short term.
  • OKC Power Forward #7
    Chet Holmgren played 28 minutes in Thursday’s 133-110 win over the Lakers, recording a stat line of 18 points (8-of-15 FGs, 1-of-1 FTs), five rebounds, one assist, two steals, and one 3-pointer.
    Holmgren had a good night at the office, but it could have been even better as he was 1-of-6 from three. The rookie is shooting over 40% from three on the season, evidence that nights like Thursday have not been the norm. For Holmgren to be close to a 50/40/90 player after missing all of last season was something very few people expected to see. Having entered the season with a Yahoo ADP of 46, he’s providing 1st-round per-game value in 9-cat formats and 2nd-round value in 8-cat.
  • OKC Small Forward #8
    Jalen Williams accounted for 21 points (8-of-13 FGs, 4-of-5 FTs), five rebounds, seven assists, one block, and one 3-pointer in 29 minutes in Thursday’s 133-110 win over the Lakers.
    In addition to being asked to provide scoring, Williams was the first line of defense in Oklahoma City’s quest to slow down LeBron James. While the future Hall of Fame forward put up 21 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, one steal, one block, and four 3-pointers, he was also responsible for five turnovers. Give JDub some of the credit for that, while Oklahoma City’s ability to shut down the Lakers’ supporting cast was what truly blew the game wide open. After struggling in his first game back on Tuesday, Williams was much better two nights later.
  • GSW Shooting Guard #2
    Brandin Podziemski provided a boost off the bench with 13 points (5-of-10 FGs), eight rebounds, two assists and two 3-pointers against the Clippers on Thursday.
    With Chris Paul and Gary Payton II out, there were some minutes for Podziemski to fill. Moses Moody entered the starting unit in place of Andrew Wiggins (finger), so Podziemski got to take all of the backup guard minutes. He took advantage of the opportunity and posted a solid line in his 31 minutes. He was also part of the team’s closing lineup, which shows how much Steve Kerr trusts him. Overall, Podziemski hasn’t been a great fantasy option this season, but when he’s gotten the minutes, he has proven that he is capable of producing value. CP3 and GP2 may be out a few more games and have already been ruled out for Saturday’s rematch with the Clippers, which should allow for Podziemski to have another solid performance.
  • LAL Small Forward #12
    Taurean Prince logged 32 minutes in Thursday’s 133-110 loss to the Thunder, accounting for six points (2-of-7 FGs), one rebound, two assists, and two 3-pointers.
    Prince’s production has tailed off after scoring 18 and 20 points in two of the Lakers’ first three games to begin the season. According to Basketball Monster, he’s ranked 250th in 9-cat per-game value over the last month. Rostered in seven percent of Yahoo leagues, Prince is no longer a player whom fantasy managers can justify rostering. And with Jarred Vanderbilt (heel) progressing in his recovery, Prince’s already-low fantasy value will take another hit in the near future.
  • LAC Center #40
    Ivica Zubac recorded a double-double on Thursday with 18 points (7-of-11 FGs), 13 rebounds and one block against Golden State.
    Zubac dominated the glass when he was on the floor in this game and recorded his third double-double in their last four games. He only played 27 minutes in this game, which has become the norm for him. He is averaging 25.9 minutes per game this year, which has allowed him to produce 11.4 points, 8.9 rebounds and 1.5 blocks on 60.9% shooting. Daniels Theis played 15 minutes, which means they played six minutes without a traditional center. Zubac is capable of providing traditional center stats, but Tyronn Lue has made it a point over the last few seasons to manage his minutes. That really limits his upside in fantasy hoops.
  • LAL Power Forward #3
    Anthony Davis shot 11-of-18 from the field and 9-of-10 from the foul line in Thursday’s 133-110 loss to the Thunder, scoring 31 points with 14 rebounds, two assists, and two steals in 36 minutes.
    Davis recorded his fifth 30-point double-double of the season on Thursday, leading the Lakers in points and rebounds. For the season, he’s exceeded expectations as far as fantasy basketball is concerned. Boasting a Yahoo ADP of 12, Davis is providing top 5 per-game value in 8- and 9-cat formats. And, knock on wood, he’s only missed one of the Lakers’ first 20 games. Davis hasn’t played 60 games in a season since the 2019-20 campaign, and that was a season that had a hiatus of more than four months due to COVID-19.
  • GSW Point Guard #30
    Stephen Curry led the Warriors on Thursday with 26 points (8-of-15 FGs), seven rebounds, eight assists, one steal, one block and three 3-pointers in a 120-114 win over the Clippers.
    Steph did a lot of his work late in this game, which included him scoring 11 of his 26 points in the final frame. Curry is once again providing first round value this season, though his numbers do look different. His rebounds and assists are both down, while his turnovers have actually been up. He only had two turnovers in this game, but he has 11 over his previous two. The dimes have come up recently, and he did set a season-high in this game. With the win, Golden State is now back to a .500 record at home. They dropped some home games early, which isn’t characteristic of the team that has dominated the league for the better part of the last decade. They now travel to play the Clippers on the road on Saturday.
  • LAC Small Forward #13
    Paul George struggled against the Warriors on Thursday and finished with just 15 points (6-of-18 FGs), one rebound, 10 assists and three triples in a 120-114 loss.
    George couldn’t buy a bucket in this game, but he was able to make up for some of those struggles by playing the role of playmaker. He set a new season-high for dimes in this game and recorded his first double-double of the year, though he did shoot below 40% for the third consecutive outing. He was able to hit some shots late in the fourth quarter to redeem his percentage a bit, but this was an overall poor performance from him. He didn’t grab a rebound until there was less than two minutes left in the game, and he didn’t add any steals or blocks. Dressing up as Where’s Waldo? for Halloween may end up being one of the worst mistakes of George’s career.
  • LAL Shooting Guard #10
    Max Christie logged 21 minutes in Thursday’s 133-110 loss to the Thunder, scoring eight points (3-of-7 FGs) with two steals, one block, and two 3-pointers.
    Filling the void left by Cam Reddish (groin; second game of a back-to-back), Christie was productive in the 3-point, steal, and blocked shot categories. Unfortunately, he didn’t offer much else, which should come as no surprise to fantasy managers. Christie wasn’t an appealing streamer when Reddish missed three games last week, and that remained the case on Thursday. Austin Reaves, who’s rostered in 88% of Yahoo leagues, is the player who stands to benefit the most on nights when Reddish is sidelined. Reaves finished Thursday’s loss with 14 points, two rebounds, three assists, and one 3-pointer in 29 minutes off the bench.