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Fantasy Basketball News

Latest Player Updates

Pacers head coach Nate McMillan told the media that Malcolm Brogdon practiced for the first time with the Pacers since entering the NBA Bubble. (Source: Olivia Ray on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: McMillan said that Brogdon "looked really good" in his first practice since being cleared of coronavirus. Brogdon will garner heavy usage for the Pacers, who are still uncertain about the return of Victor Oladipo. With the Pacers fighting for higher seeding in the playoffs, Brogdon is a reliable DFS target due to his uptick in minutes and ability to contribute across all categories except for blocks. On the season, Brodgon's averaged 16.3 points, 7.1 assists, 4.7 rebounds, 0.7 steals, and 1.3 three's in 30.7 minutes per game across 48 contests.

Category: Injury Updates, Rumors

Markelle Fultz has arrived in Orlando and has already started his quarantine process. He was unable to travel with the team due to a personal matter. (Source: Josh Robbins on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: After having a bumpy start to his career, Fultz appears to have accessed the potential, which made him a first-round, first pick draft choice back in 2017. This year he has played in 64 contests and has averaged 28.3 minutes of playing time, 12.1 points, 3.3 rebounds, 5.2 assists, and 1.3 steals per game. Although his value has the possibility of being limited any given night with D.J Augustin in the mix, he is still a viable value-option in all formats, as his solid floor and role on the team make him a consistent source of production.

James Ennis III told reporters that he was the Magic player who tested positive for COVID-19. He also disclosed some of his symptoms, which included a headache for four to five days and nausea. He indicated on the call that he is now feeling well and that he was able to practice for the first time today, “Now my health is better…I’m just trying to get my wind up and my legs back under me and just get in rhythm because our first scrimmage is next week. I want to be prepared for that.”

Fantasy Impact: After being acquired from the Sixers, Ennis has been able to address some of the critical needs within the Magic’s front-court, with his defensive prowess and tough-mindedness. He has been a positive contributor in his limited role coming off the bench. In 12 contests, he has averaged 23.1 minutes of playing time per game, 6.8 points, 4.1 rebounds, 1.1 assists, .5 steals, and .5 blocks per game. With the absence of Jonathan Isaac and Al-Farouq Aminu, Ennis might find himself playing in a larger role for the team come game time. He can be a great value-option in deep-league play, as he has often been able to produce a respectable floor when given the opportunity to play more. Depending on his determined role these coming weeks, Ennis might be worth keeping on your radar as a salary relief candidate for other league formats based on your strategy and risk-tolerance.

Category: Injury Updates

Kings' forward Justin James has fully recovered from a knee injury that kept him out of games earlier in the season.

Fantasy Impact: James has rarely played a significant role in any of the Kings' games this season. This may be an opportunity for James though, as Sacramento has been dismantled by injury and COVID-19. James should have a huge increase in minutes with Harrison Barnes ruled out. James could be a great value play in daily fantasy when the season resumes.

C Jontay Porter (knee) is fully practicing and was praised for his competitiveness and ability to pick things up quickly. (Source: Peter Edmiston on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Porter signed a multi-year contract with the Grizzlies in March and will provide the team with frontcourt depth. He fully practiced and took part in five-on-five drills. Porter is expected to play a limited role off the bench, but will most likely not be involved in the regular rotation.

Category: Injury Updates

Grayson Allen put in a full practice for the Grizzlies today. Allen had an injury to his hip in February, but has fully recovered. (Source: Peter Edmiston on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Allen has yet to see extended time as a starter, but he could see some extended minutes as a role player now that he is at full health. Although Allen hasn't stood out as a consistent fantasy option, his threat as an outside shooter can always make him a dangerous scoring option. Allen may only deserve a spot in deep fantasy leagues, but may have value in daily fantasy.

Denis Schroder will leave the Orlando bubble in 3-4 weeks “for sure” as his wife is pregnant. (Source: Royce Young on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Schroder could potentially miss the rest of the regular season as he would have to quarantine upon his return. Schroder missing games will be a huge loss for the Thunder. He is averaging 19.0 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game.

Terance Mann underwent hand surgery in March and said he is back “full time, full contact”. His role would be very minimal once the NBA restarts. (Source: Jovan Buha on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Mann has not played much this season. He is averaging 7.7 minutes, 1.6 points, 0.9 rebounds, and 1.1 assists per game. Since he is coming back from injury, his role will likely decrease.

Category: Injury Updates

KZ Okpala has put on 10-12 pounds since the NBA shutdown, according to coach Eric Spoelstra. Spoelstra stated that Okpala looks different and this extra practice time with the team is what he needed. (Source: Anthony Chiang on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Okpala has played in only five games so far this season, scoring a season high of just seven points during a game in February. However, Okpala could be a player who benefits from the NBA restart as coach Spoelstra seems set on including a larger roster in Orlando. Okpala has seen next to no fantasy value all season, but he has now caught the eyes of his coaching staff. In eight games before playoffs, Okpala could get an opportunity to play some significant minutes.

Former Knicks and current free agent F Lance Thomas has agreed to terms with the Brooklyn Nets. (Source: Ian Begley on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Thomas is likely to join the Nets in Disney World after undergoing an initial quarantine to ensure he tests negative for COVID-19. The Nets are putting together a squad for the ages down in the Disney World bubble, one that includes the ageless Jamal Crawford and one of Kevin Durant’s best friends Michael Beasley. A bunch of guys coming in from off the streets to play in Orlando for a playoff tournament is sure to draw some excitement. Thomas last played for the Knicks during the 2018-19 season, and for his career, has averaged 5.2 points and 2.6 rebounds per game.

Category: Transactions

SF Harrison Barnes tested positive for Coronavirus on Tuesday. (Source: Shams Charania on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Barnes is in quarantine and will join his teammates in Orlando once cleared. He becomes the latest member of the Kings to test positive for COVID-19. Barnes wss having a solid year for the Kings, averaging 14.7 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.5 triples across 64 games this campaign. Look for Kent Bazemore to see an uptick in minutes if Barnes is not cleared before the NBA season starts up again.

Category: Injury Updates

Joel Embiid looks destined to carry an even bigger role for the Sixers come playoff time, as coach Brett Brown desires to play him 38 minutes per game, “I hope I can keep him somewhere in that range, 38 is probably ambitious, I said it, I’ll own it, and I’ll stand by it.” The coach also had this to say about Embiid’s conditioning, which should benefit his plan, “His fitness base has been well earned…there is zero doubt that he would have had to put a lot of time to arrive into Orlando in the shape that he has arrived in.” (Source: Serena Winters on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: In last year’s playoffs, Embiid averaged 30.4 minutes of playing time, 20.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 2.3 blocks, and .7 steals throughout 11 games. It is difficult to say that a player who averaged a double-double in the playoffs could have done better, but such is the case with Embiid. His production fell significantly from where it was during the 2018-19 season and could have been attributed to the heavy workload he bore during the season, as he had 29 games (out of 64) in which he played 35 minutes or more. This year, it’s a different story as he has played in only 44 contests, of which 11 of them required him to play 35 minutes or more. In those 11 games, he averaged 31.1 points, 15.4 rebounds, 2.8 Assists, .7 steals, and 1.5 blocks, all while shooting 52.2 percent from the floor and 41.3 percent from beyond the arc. It is also important to point out that out of those 11 games seven were against teams currently participating in the NBA restart. Embiid’s lighter workload this season and his rested game-ready physic should make coach Brown’s decision to play him more minutes a success. If everything goes according to plan, Embiid would be more than a must-start; he would be a “super” lock-and-load play in all formats, no matter the price.

Edmond Sumner has been dealing with knee soreness since his final year of college. The lockdown has really helped him treat his knee. "I'm healthy. This is probably the best I've felt, especially (with my) knee," Sumner said. "The training staff say this is the best they've been treating my knee." (Source: IndyStar)

Fantasy Impact: Sumner is having a decent season for how many minutes he is playing. This season, he is averaging 13.8 minutes, 4.6 points, 1.5 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 0.6 steals per game. Sumner's role and minutes could be increased if Victor Oladpio decides to play or not.

Category: Injury Updates

C Al Horford could potentially come off the bench for the 76ers when the NBA season resumes, per Keith Pompey of the Philly Inquirer. (Source: Keith Pompey on Twitter )

Fantasy Impact: Horford came off the bench for the 76ers back in February. He was reinserted into the starting lineup once PG Ben Simmons went down with a back injury. The 76ers exclusively had Simmons playing power forward in practices recently, while Shake Milton handled point guard duties. “One would assume Al Horford or Shake Milton would be the 76ers’ sixth man,” added Pompey. Horford struggled when coming off the bench earlier in the season, averaging 6.0 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 0.7 triples and 1.3 blocks across three games.

Jeremiah Martin has been a welcomed surprise for the Nets as they continue to piece together a new playoff-ready roster. Interim head coach Jacque Vaughn commented that “Jeremiah Martin has been a surprise for us. His ability to compete. That’s all we ask at this beginning stage is to compete. Whether that’s knowing the plays, knowing different implementations, or having yourself ready every day. I give him a pat on the back as well.” Two-way player Martin also received praise from the Nets’ current leading man Caris LeVert as he said, “Jeremiah has been a huge addition for us. He is very quick with the basketball, makes great decisions, very good shooter, too. I liked him when he was in college in Memphis. It’s been cool to be on the same team with him and learn some things from him, as well.” (Source: Kevin Durant Show on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: With the amount of depth, the Nets had within their back-court earlier this year, Martin hardly saw any time on the floor; however, with all of the roster losses, he is expected to see a role increase. Although the undrafted rookie only played in three games with the Nets this year, he earned his stripes by performing in the G-League. This year in the G-League, he played a total of 37 games, between the Sioux Falls Skyforce and the Long Island Nets, and average a total of 30.4 minutes of playing time, 17.7 points, 3.5 rebounds, 4.8 assists, 1.8 steals, and .5 blocks. His level of production would be invaluable for the Nets as they prepare for the upcoming “seeding” games. Should Martin be able to take advantage of this unforeseen circumstance and produce, he might be interesting to keep track of as a potential “dart” play in the deepest of league competition. As of now, however, with little to no exposure to NBA level competition, it would be best to fade him at this time.

Mohamed Bamba made a concerted effort to become a more influential player this break; in doing so, he added 21 pounds to his 7”0’ foot frame, most being lean muscle. In discussing his transformation, Bamba said, “It was something that I had to work at every single day, and I had to make myself uncomfortable. I had to wake up a few times at 3 and 4 o’clock in the morning just to get some extra calories and an extra fill. I had to wake up early to get that extra, big breakfast. It was definitely uncomfortable at first, but as I got used to it, it definitely got a lot easier.” Bamba hopes that his efforts lead to him becoming an essential factor in the Magic’s push for a second straight playoff berth. (Source: John Denton on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: With his new 252-pound physique and commitment to being an asset to the team, Bamba should find more success in his role coming off the bench. He has already shown the potential to stuff the stat-sheet and is poised to capitalize on his skill sets. This year he has played in 60 contests and has averaged 14.5 minutes of playing time, 5.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, .7 assists, and 1.4 blocks per game. His hard work could be just the thing to separate himself enough from fellow teammate Khem Birch, thus leading to a more significant role as the back-up to Nikola Vucevic. Should he prove himself through the “seeding” games and earn more playing time, Bamba could become a steal in deep-league formats. He might even, depending on your strategy, be worth a look as a salary relief option in all fantasy formats at that point.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will likely be inserted into the starting lineup when the NBA restarts. (Source: Mike Trudell on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: The Lakers went 17-3 when Caldwell-Pope started in place of Bradley. In those 20 games, Caldwell-Pope averaged 28.1 minutes, 11.1 points, 2.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists, and 0.9 steals per game. He will be expected to step up and embrace his increased role. The team is counting on Caldwell-Pope to make a difference.

Jae Crowder is prioritizing his mental preparation for life in the bubble, saying, “The most important part for me is mentally. Physically, I know I’m going to put the work in. That’s not even a question. But mentally, you may have some days where it’s tougher. I just want to continue to build mentally to push forward even on the good days and bad days.” (Source: Shandel Richardson on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Crowder’s demonstration of self-awareness and multi-faceted approach to his preparation to intentionally build up his mental resiliency for both on and off the court should yield positive results for not only his game but his living experience while in the bubble as well. Crowder’s versatility is invaluable to this Heat team, and it seems as if he is doing all the work necessary to show up powerfully for his squad. Since joining the team, he has played in 13 contests and has averaged 28.7 minutes of playing time, 11.9 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.5 steals, and .5 blocks per game. His defensive versatility and ability to stuff the stat-sheet heavily contribute to his solid floor and ceiling. His consistent production is enough for him to be considered a cost-effective asset for your fantasy team in all formats.

On Monday, Admiral Schofield said he lost somewhere between 15 and 20 pounds during the NBA's hiatus. (Source: Chase Hughes on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Schofield will try to make an impact on the Wizards in Orlando. The 23-year-old has spent some time in the G-League this season but was recalled about a month and a half before the lockdown. So far this season, Schofield has averaged 10.9 minutes, 3.1 points, and 1.3 rebounds per game. If the Wizards make the playoffs, Schofield will not see any additional minutes. But, if the Wizards get eliminated before the play in, then Schofield could see an increase in minutes during the final regular season games.

Darius Bazley (knee) says he’s 100 percent ready to play, “I’ve been ready since we didn’t know if there was going to be a season or not.” (Source: Erik Horne on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact: Bazley has now fully recovered from his right knee injury (bone bruise) and is ready to resume his rookie campaign. This year he has played in 53 contests and has averaged 17.2 minutes of playing time, 4.5 points, 3.7 rebounds, .5 assists, and .7 blocks per game. Throughout the season, he has been able to contribute good production coming off the bench and when filling in for Danilo Gallinari when he was out; however, Bazley’s low floor and limited ceiling makes him far from a viable option for value at this point. The rookie may be worth keeping on your radar as a potential deep-league play, but other than that, he will do just fine sitting on waivers until further notice.

Category: Injury Updates