It’s the season of giving. Some are getting ready to give thanks in a couple of weeks, while others are giving out buckets. Friday’s 12-game slate featured spectacular performances from stars “giving” things out across the league. Luka Doncic gave the Clippers 44, Domantas Sabonis gave the Thunder a triple-double, and Taylor Jenkins gave us an epic, NSFW rant about the refs. However, he’ll probably also be giving the league a nice chunk of his paycheck.
We also had 12 more in-season tournament games, with only two of them being decided by double figures. The majority of these games have been close, and it appears that teams care slightly more than many fans expected them to. Mike Brown said that they showed their players what they could buy with the $500k prize for winning the whole thing. Believe it or not, money is a great motivator.
The NBA has gotten off to a fantastic start, and fantasy hoops is following along closely. So here are eight players that should be considered for your fantasy team.
Keyonte George- 16% in Yahoo leagues
George saw the second start of his career on Friday and finished with seven points and 11 assists. Through two starts, he is averaging seven points and 10 assists while shooting 5-of-20 from the floor. The shots will start falling, but the playmaking is very encouraging for both him and the team. It’s hard to find assists on the waiver wire, and he has upside to provide plenty of points when he figures out the shooting percentage.
Lonnie Walker- 25%
With Cam Thomas and Ben Simmons out, Walker played 20 minutes off the bench and posted a 20/7/4 line. He should continue to see an expanded role with Thomas sidelined for at least a couple more weeks, and he’s worth rostering as long as he is getting the minutes.
Bismack Biyombo- 19%
With another absence for Xavier Tillman, Biyombo started at center again for Memphis. He finished with 15 points and 14 rebounds. He will only help in traditional center categories, but he’s worth consideration as long as Tillman is out.
Cam Reddish- 1%
Darvin Ham opted to move Austin Reaves to the bench and Reddish into the starting unit on Friday. He even cited Manu Ginobili in the postgame press conference, so Reaves could be the team’s sixth man for the foreseeable future. Reddish played 28 minutes on Friday and contributed 17 points, three steals and five triples, including one to seal the win. He has been inconsistent throughout his career, but a permanent spot in the starting lineup would do wonders for him.
Cam Payne- 3%
Damian Lillard is questionable for Saturday’s game against the Magic. Payne started in his place on Thursday and finished with seven points, four rebounds and five assists. He’s not super appealing, but he’ll be a solid option on a day with just four games.
Derrick Jones Jr.- 3%
DJJ has put together some solid performances recently for the Mavs, including a double-double on Friday. He’s worth considering in deeper leagues, especially since he appears to be a fixture of the starting unit, even if his minutes have fluctuated.
Moussa Diabate- less than 1%
Tyronn Lue said after Friday’s game that they wanted more size in their second unit. Diabate is the only other option at center with Mason Plumlee injured, so unless they’re making a trade or bringing in a free agent, Diabate is their best option. He recorded a double-double on Friday.
Jacob Gilyard- less than 1%
With Ziaire Williams out, Gilyard got the starting nod on Friday. He contributed 14 points, five rebounds, eight assists, one steal and four 3-pointers in 34 minutes. The Grizzlies have been decimated by injuries, and if nobody returns for Sunday’s game against the Clippers, Gilyard could see another start.