Fantasy Basketball 2014: Daily Dose; February 28th
Well, the Nuggets stink.
Their atrocious outing on Thursday night cost me my heads up chances, so I went to sleep grumpy. But today is another day, and the final of February. Let’s not make like the 76ers and actually win a game this month, shall we?
Yeah, that one stings.
Note: FPPG totals are based off FanDuel scoring.
Stephen Curry, PG (@ NY)
FPPG allowed to PG: 37.33 (6th)
Curry had a miserable, and I mean miserable, night on Wednesday night, being held to just five points, three rebounds and five assists, an uncharacteristic 12.75 fantasy points. It was by far the lowest fantasy total of the season for Steph, but visiting a struggling Knicks unit should be great medicine. Do you remember the last time Curry faced the Knicks? Well, if you didn’t, let me refresh your memory. The guy went bonkers (with a capital “B”), netting 54 points, seven assists, six rebounds and three steals. The guy went 11-for-13 from beyond the arc. Now that obviously won’t happen again, but Curry should have himself a nice bounceback outing against a Knicks defense that is allowing above the league average for points per game to point guards over their last 15 days. New York has also allowed six players to post career-highs in points this year, and when Curry gets hot, only Kevin Durant is a more dominant scorer.
Kent Bazemore, SG (vs SAC)
FPPG allowed to SG: 37.50 (28th)
Bazemore has been very strong for the Lakers since joining the team, and head coach Mike D’Antoni seems to like him. Over his last four games, he’s averaging a strong 35 minutes per game, scoring a nice 17.25 points per game during that span. Oddly enough, Kendall Marshall has taken a backseat, as Bazemore logs plenty of minutes. You want everything to do with this Kings/Lakers game that features two of the bottom-four defenses, both allowing 104 points per game this year. Sacramento is also surrendering the third-most fantasy points per game to shooting guards this season, and the pace of this game should result in enough possessions for Bazemore to make an impact. His price is dirt cheap still, making him a borderline must-play when you consider how ugly the shooting guard position is tonight.
Rudy Gay, SF (@ LAL)
FPPG allowed to SF: 39.18 (28th)
Remember what I said about wanting everything to do with this game?
Rudy Gay is going to be one of the more heavily owned players in fantasy this evening against arguably the worst defense in basketball. Gay is already hoisting up 16.6 shots per game, but now with DeMarcus Cousins suspended for this contest, Gay should flirt with 25 in this high-scoring affair. He can score in bunches, but I love the fact that he’s been adding the peripherals to his game. Over his last five games, Gay is averaging a nice 7.2 rebounds and 3.6 assists, to go along with his 23 points. That bodes well for this matchup against the Lakers, who are coughing up the most rebounds per game to small forwards, but are also surrendering the most offensive and defensive rebounds per game in general this year. Between the pace and absence of Cousins, Gay should see a massive amount of touches and should exploit this plus matchup.
Alexis Ajinca, PF (@ PHO)
FPPG allowed to PF: 41.38 (16th)
Keep an eye on the status of Anthony Davis, who exited Wednesday night’s game with a shoulder injury and is questionable for tonight’s contest. Ajinca, meanwhile, has played very well over his last three outings, averaging 14 points and 9.6 rebounds during that span, even with Davis in the lineup. Ajinca will play plenty of minutes tonight regardless of Davis’ status, but if The Brow can’t go, Ajinca becomes extremely intriguing play, as he’ll see all the run he can handle, seeing as the Pelicans frontcourt is already banged up. Meanwhile, the Suns are coughing up the 5th-most offensive rebounds (11.9) and 17th-most defensive rebounds (32) per game this season, presenting plenty of opportunity for the seven-footer. Don’t overpay for him, but if his price is right, he could be a steal tonight.
Joakim Noah, C (@ DAL)
FPPG allowed to C: 42.17 (14th)
The dude is matchup proof.
Noah is a walking double-double, but also has the advantage over every other center with his supreme passing skills, averaging 4.6 assists per game on the season. In the month of February, Noah posted just three games with fewer than 10 rebounds, and in the month of January, he went zero games without at least 10 rebounds. The Mavericks frontcourt is undersized and doesn’t possess the strength and size to match the bulldog mentality of Noah, who will likely see a few more offensive touches due to the Mavericks higher pace. Via NBA.com, only three players in basketball are seeing more rebounding chances per game this season than Noah’s 18.3, so Joakim should be in line for his 30th double-double of the season.
Adam Pfeifer is a featured fantasy sports columnist for Rant Sports.
You can follow him on Twitter @aPfeiferRS.