2015-2016 Fantasy Basketball: Week 19 Preview
4 Games: ATL, CHA, CLE, GS, LAC, MEM, MIL, NO, NY, ORL, SAC, SA, UTA
3 Games: BKN, CHI, DAL, DEN, DET, HOU, IND, LAL, MIA, MIN, OKC, PHI, PHO, POR, TOR, WSH
2 Games: BOS
Damian Lillard – PG – Portland Trail Blazers
Dame Dolla had his second 50 point game of the season March 4th at Toronto, where he added five assists and three rebounds. Lillard was 16/28 from the field, and 12/13 from the free-throw line, adding six three’s on a night where he was remarkable shooting the basketball. He averaged 31.5 points, 4.5 assists and 4.0 rebounds while shooting 47% the field. He also averaged 3.8 three’s per game over that span, which helped him perform as one of the top fantasy players in the league this past week. Lillard looms in the shadows of Steph Curry and Russell Westbrook, but he is more than capable of putting up big time fantasy numbers at a cheaper price in DFS. He’ll continue to score in bunches for the rest of this season, and if you catch him on a night where he’s hot, he’s proven to be able to score with the best of them across the board.
Khris Middleton – SF/SG – Milwaukee Bucks
Middleton has always been able to score for the Bucks, but he has been hot as of late. He’s averaged 25.8 points, 3.3 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 3.3 three’s per game over the last week, while shooting 48% from the field during that stretch. Middleton was especially hot on March 4th against the Timberwolves, where he was 11/16 from the field with eight of his 11 buckets coming from deep. He finished with 32 points in 34 minutes in perhaps his most efficient and effective game of the season. However, just two games prior to this one, Middleton had 30 points on 7/10 shooting and a perfect 15/15 from the free throw line in 44 minutes. Not only has he been scoring in bunches of late, but his efficiency is what has put him over the top. Milwaukee has four games this week, all of which coming at home.
Kevin Love – PF – Cleveland Cavaliers
Things just don’t seem to be right in Cleveland for Kevin Love when LeBron James and Kyrie Irving are both in the lineup. He is the clear third option, and he has not been able to provide even third option scoring here of late. Love averaged just 11.7 points this week, and only 5.7 rebounds while shooting a horrendous 29% from the field. The Cavs only played three games this week, and Love sat out against the Wizards last Friday night. He was a top five player in fantasy basketball during his time in Minnesota, but things just haven’t been able to click on a consistent basis since arriving in Cleveland. He just signed to a long-term deal in Cleveland, which means they need to figure out a way to get him more involved for the betterment of the team, or else a trade might be in the works. Love should be avoided at all costs in DFS unless LeBron James or Kyrie Irving miss time to rest or due to injury, and even then it would take the right matchup to consider him an option.
Alex Len – C – Phoenix Suns
What a breakout from the young Suns big man, who has been absolutely dominant in the last five games. His 12-rebound game on March 1st was his lowest rebounding total in the last five games, as he’s averaged 14.4 rebounds in that stretch, to go along with 20.4 points and 1.4 blocks per game as well. He’s 55.8% owned in ESPN leagues and going very quickly on the waiver wire. If he hasn’t been scooped up in your league yet, he’s a must add until he cools off.
David Lee – PF – Dallas Mavericks
Lee was a poor man’s Kevin Love when he was in Golden State and Kevin in Minnesota, and oh how the mighty have fallen. Lee hasn’t been able to contribute since his injury that lost him his spot on the Warriors, which eventually landed him in Boston. It didn’t work out in Boston either, where he was cut and eventually signed with the Mavericks. While he still has yet to put up consistent numbers with the Mavs, he is getting anywhere from 20-30 minutes per game and shooting at an incredibly high rate. He’s shooting 67% over the past two weeks with Dallas, nearly averaging a double-double at 10.0 points and 8.4 rebounds per game. If he can work his way to more minutes, he would become a great addition for those looking for points and rebounds from the forward position. He’s just 38.5% owned in ESPN leagues, but is currently the second most-added player in the league behind Alex Len.
Mario Chalmers – PG – Memphis Grizzlies
The Grizzlies have been known for their defense over the years, especially from Tony Allen who anchors The Grindhouse. Chalmers has fit in to perfection since arriving in Memphis a few months ago, and has been pick-pocketing nearly everyone at an elite level. Chalmers has contributed 13.7 points, 4.0 assists, 2.7 rebounds, 1.0 three pointer, and 3.3 steals per game while shooting 48% from the field and 94% from the free throw line.
Games of the week
Monday – Bucks at Bulls
Jimmy buckets is back for the Bulls as they host Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jabari Parker and the young and exciting Milwaukee Bucks.
Tuesday – Wizards at Trail Blazers
John Wall vs. Damian Lillard at point guard highlights a game of a team looking to fight their way into the playoffs, and another trying to stay in the top eight teams.
Wednesday – Clippers at Thunder
Two teams with some of the biggest stars in the NBA will battle at Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City. Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, Chris Paul, and DeAndre Jordan headline a matchup of two of the top teams in the West. If only Blake Griffin was able to join the party.
Thursday – Bulls at Spurs
The Bulls look to improve their playoff position in the Eastern Conference, but they will face a tall task as they head to San Antonio to take on the Spurs. The Spurs will look to stay perfect at home this year as Jimmy Butler and the Bulls come to town.
Friday – Trail Blazers at Warriors
The last time these two teams met, the Blazers blew out the Warriors in Portland. Things will be different now that they’re at Oracle Arena, but the Blazers have been one of the hottest teams in the NBA since the All-Star break.
Saturday – Thunder at Spurs
The Oklahoma City Thunder, who currently sit third in the Western Conference, look to be the biggest threat to perhaps the Spurs and the Warriors in the West. In a possible playoff matchup, the Thunder will head to San Antonio to look to break their unbeaten streak at home.
Sunday – Cavaliers at Clippers
King James and the Cavs head to the Staples Center to take on Chris Paul and the Clippers in a Sunday matinee.