Faried missed Wednesday’s game for personal reasons and will be back tonight, although he is not a rotation piece in this series and can safely be ignored for DFS purposes.
Smart and Brogdon will be the “Short Stints” twins, with their minutes likely matching up somewhat evenly, but the two are obviously going to be used on their opponent’s best scorer, so they shouldn’t match up individually. Neither are DFS considerations due to their limited minutes and playing style that doesn’t always generate many fantasy points, but Jaylen Brown, Gordon Hayward, and Bucks wings yet to be determined will see fewer minutes due to the return of the short stints twins.
Siakam has officially been upgraded from doubtful to questionable for Sunday’s Eastern Conference Semifinals Game 4 matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers due to a right calf contusion he presumably sustained tripping Joel Embiid in the fourth quarter of Thursday’s loss. At this point, it feels as if the Raptors are attempting to deploy a gamesmanship move on the Sixers, albeit an underwhelming one, making it appear more likely than not that Siakam will play in Game 4 this afternoon. There’s been no word of a potential minute restriction for Siakam, but if he’s deemed good to go, he’ll clearly be an intriguing tournament target at likely suppressed ownership considering he owns a 28.3% usage rate and is averaging 1.05 fantasy points per minute through the first three contests of this series.
Importantly for the Nuggets guard depth and defense, Craig will be masked tonight, but won’t have any sort of minutes restriction. You won’t want to expect much scoring out of Craig, but you can expect energy and peripherals with a full complement of minutes. You also may want to take expectations somewhat for the Blazers scorers with the hard nosed Craig swarming.
Lin has not been a regular rotation piece for the Raptors this post-season, but he is officially out tonight. We might see a slight bump in playing time to Pat McCaw in place of Jodie Meeks on the second unit so Toronto can beef up their backcourt defense a bit. However, it is important to note that the 76ers used a tight 8 man rotation for virtually all of game 2, so anyone outside the starting 5 and main subs Ibaka, Van Vleet and Powell carries an extreme amount of risk, even as a punt.
The Clippers will use the same starting lineup they did in game 4, which means JaMychal Green at the 5 matched up with Andrew Bogut. There’s little hope for this Clippers lineup to keep pace with the Warriors and they are 14.5 point underdogs, but Green getting starting run at his reduced price could end up being a valuable salary saver in your lineup. He isn’t expected to play more than 25 minutes and hasn’t done so in any game this series, but he is a valuable enough point per minute producer to get the job done even if the minutes are limited, due to blowout or otherwise.
James Ennis will be able to play more than 12 minutes tonight. We don’t know how many more. Probably don’t play James Ennis, and ratchet down projections for Nets wings when Ennis is on the floor. Really not much change for tonight’s game since we don’t know how much more Ennis will play, but we’ll want to monitor this situation for Ennis’ availability going forward.
Horford seems as though he is closer to playing than not playing, but we still need to wait for him to get through warmups for a final decision to be made. This is huge and definitely something to pay attention to. If Horford were unable to go, that would open things up in terms of the Celtics rotation, likely meaning additional run for Aron Baynes and Marcus Morris, but the real benefactor might be Myles Turner, who would otherwise be stifled by Horford’s interior presence. We will definitely want to pay close attention to how this develops as more news becomes available. It would also potentially increase the usage of Kyrie Irving, who would essentially need to be the entire offense in Horford’s absence.
Patrick McCaw might give it a go, but wouldn’t be guaranteed any minutes even if he is cleared to play. He would be behind Fred Van Vleet on the depth chart so it’s unlikely that there would be any DFS impact, regardless of whether or not McCaw can go today.
We now know what Ennis’ minutes will look like, which removes him from even the slightest consideration from a DFS standpoint. It also slightly dampens the outlook for Mike Scott, who will likely lose some minutes to accommodate the Ennis cameo.
Dwyane Wade is expected to play tonight, although Spoelstra made it clear it may be fewer minutes than last night. That is probably enough to not be overly aggressive rostering Wade, although the Miami rotations are going to be somewhat unpredictable tonight.
With the Magic locked into a playoff spot, we could see them err on the side of caution and rest their star big man, resulting in some extended run for Khem Birch and likely also more usage for the remaining Magic starters, given how large of a role Vucevic plays in their offense. This is also a Bismack Biyombo revenge game, although he’s seeing paltry minutes at the moment and the Hornets are still in the hunt for the playoffs, so I doubt he would get too much additional run or suddenly become the focus of the Hornets Kemba-centric attack just because of the lack of an interior defender and the revenge narrative.
McCollum’s status is important to keep an eye on, as he was efficient in the 25 minutes given to him on Sunday, and would also take on some of the load carried by Damian Lillard and Enes Kanter in his absence. I’m not sure I would go so far as to roster McCollum as the increase from 25 to say, 28 minutes isn’t earth shattering, but him being eased into the Blazers rotation will have a usage effect on his otherwise high usage teammates.
The Raptors might not have been an overly compelling team to choose players to roster from in the first place, but the fact that they aren’t resting anyone and are working hard towards the best possible record tells me that their starters are not likely to be the most valuable of players. That combined with the fact that they should have a fairly easy time with an undermanned Minnesota squad means we may want to look elsewhere to optimize our rosters.
Ordinarily Crowder would be somewhat of a secondary player to target, but with the Jazz missing so many high usage bodies, he could play a decent sized role in a comfortable match up against the Lakers.
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