Daily Fantasy Basketball Forecaster – Delon Wright
The fantasy playoffs continue with 14 teams in action Friday. A couple of big names could return to action in what is terrific news for fantasy basketball owners. The Grizzlies seem as though they are going to be without Mike Conley who looks set for a night off. With both he and Avery Bradley out of service, Delon Wright is going to be a hot pickup across many competitive formats. Wright finished the last game with just nine points but added four assists, three rebounds, and two steals. More importantly, he played 42 minutes and the opportunity is going to be there for at least another week.
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Daily Fantasy Basketball Forecaster
- Mike Conley – Grizzlies (general soreness – doubtful)
- Avery Bradley – Grizzlies (shin – out)
- Kevin Love – Cavaliers (concussion – questionable)
- Dennis Smith Jr. – Knicks (back – out)
- Noah Vonleh – Knicks (ankle – questionable)
- Allonzo Trier – Knicks (calf – out)
- Kyle Lowry – Raptors (ankle – out)
- Eric Gordon – Rockets (rest – probable)
- Kenneth Faried – Rockets (knee – probable)
- Justise Winslow – Heat (thigh – questionable)
- Bam Adebayo – Heat (hip – questionable)
- Giannis Antetokounmpo – Bucks (ankle – probable)
- Nikola Mirotic – Bucks (thumb – out)
- Allen Crabbe – Nets (knee – out)
- LeBron James – Lakers (groin – probable)
- Ivica Zubac – Clippers (rebounds)
- Landry Shamet – Clippers (three-pointers)
- Ante Zizic – Cavaliers (rebounds)
- Brandon Knight – Cavaliers (points, three-pointers)
- Mason Plumlee – Nuggets (blocks, assists)
- Nerlens Noel – Thunder (blocks)
- Jakob Poeltl – Spurs (rebounds, blocks, FG%)
- Bryn Forbes – Spurs (three-pointers)
- Patty Mills – Spurs (three-pointers)
- Marco Belinelli – Spurs (three-pointers)
- Gerald Green – Rockets (three-pointers)
- Danuel House Jr. – Rockets (points, three-pointers)
- James Johnson – Heat (low volume, multi-category)
- D.J. Wilson – Bucks (Antetokounmpo injury)
- Pat Connaughton – Bucks (three-pointers)
- DeMarre Carroll – Nets (three-pointers)
- Ed Davis – Nets (rebounds, FG%)
- Rodions Kurucs – Nets (three-pointers, steals)
- Reggie Bullock – Lakers (three-pointers)
- Alex Caruso – Lakers (assists, steals)
NBA Matchups for March 22
Grizzlies @ Magic
The Grizzlies are likely to be without Mike Conley for Friday’s matchup, the veteran listed as doubtful due to general soreness. With both he and Avery Bradley on the sidelines, Delon Wright could be in for a much larger role. Wright was in the starting lineup for the Grizzlies last game and his production was solid without being spectacular. He typically contributes across the board when he sees big minutes and should be on most rosters moving forward.
The Magic will be looking for their fourth consecutive victory against a Grizzlies team with very little to play for. They currently sit 1.5 games out of the playoff race with every game a must-win. They recently added Michael Carter-Williams to their squad and although he has no fantasy value, he does add depth to their roster as a second ball handler behind D.J. Augustin. His arrival has impacted Jerian Grant who played just five minutes in their last game, however, neither are nor were be standard league assets.
Clippers @ Cavaliers
Four teams are locked on 42-and-30, occupying fifth through eighth in the Western Conference. The Clippers have a good chance to move into the fifth seed Friday, coming up against a struggling Cavaliers team. The Thunder and Spurs both play Friday, however, come up against the Raptors and Rockets respectively. For the Clippers, Landry Shamet continues to light it up from outside, averaging over 3.5 triples per game over the month of March. He is available in almost 70 percent of leagues and should be on a roster most days, especially with the importance placed on streaming down the stretch.
Kevin Love is not on the injury report heading into Friday but owners should still keep an eye on his status leading up to the game. Oddly enough, the Cavaliers are basically running at full strength with both Tristan Thompson and Larry Nance Jr. returning in the last game. The minutes’ distribution is far from clear making streaming a questionable prospect. Ante Zizic has been a steady source of boards but is now going to have a lot of competition for playing time.
Nuggets @ Knicks
The Nuggets are on the second night of a back-to-back after defeating the Wizards on Thursday. A victory over the lowly Knicks here would draw them level with the Warriors for the best record in the West. Outside of their usual fantasy targets, Mason Plumlee has been hanging on to standard league relevance by contributing in a range of areas. He can help in rebounds, assists, blocks, and field-goal percentage and is worth a look, especially in a game that could be a blowout.
The Knicks continue to lose with regularity but that has given a number of players streaming value. Dennis Smith Jr. has already been ruled out once again with a back injury which means Emmanuel Mudiay will get another start. He has played well in four of his last five games and should be considered if you need points, three-pointers, and assists.
Thunder @ Raptors
The Thunder are just two days removed from suffering an overtime loss to the Raptors, the team they will face again Friday. For the Thunder, they will be hoping for an improved performance as well as for Paul George to avoid foul trouble. George finished with just 19 points in the loss and was clearly tentative due to the foul issues. The Thunder are locked with a number of teams as they battle for seedings in the loaded Western Conference. They could end the day positioned anywhere from fifth to seventh, indicating how close things really are.
Kyle Lowry has already been ruled out for Friday and will miss his fourth game from the last five. Lorwy is well known for struggling towards the backend of the regular season and this situation is just another blip on his fantasy radar. It doesn’t appear as though the injury is too serious but they will be extremely cautious moving forward. Since returning from injury, Fred VanVleet has been excellent across all three games. In that time, he is averaging 17.7 points, 7.3 assists, 1.0 steals, and 3.0 three-pointers. He has also shot at least 50 percent from the field in all three games and should be picked up in basically every format.
Spurs @ Rockets
The Spurs lost their first game of the month against the Heat on Wednesday, a game in which they may have simply let their guard down. Patty Mills had his best game in quite some time, ending with 17 points and six assists. Over his last three games, he is averaging 13.0 points, 3.7 assists, and 3.0 triples. The Spurs have a number of fringe players who could turn it on which makes streaming any of them a bit hit-or-miss.
The Rockets are also coming off a surprising loss after they went down to the Grizzlies in overtime. Eric Gordon missed that game for rest purposes but will return to the lineup Friday. Danuel House Jr. has played at least 33 minutes in three of his past four games, hitting a combined 15 three-pointers in that span. He generally offers very little outside of points and three-pointers but should be considered if you need a boost in perimeter scoring.
Heat @ Bucks
The Heat have quietly been playing very well and have three straight wins under their belt including victories over the Thunder and the Spurs. James Johnson has emerged as a 12-team asset over his last two games, contributing across the board in what have been vintage type performances. He is hard to trust as a long-term pickup but could be streamed in to see if he can keep up his recent production.
The Bucks could welcome back Giannis Antetokounmpo for Friday’s matchup, a welcome sight for fans and owners alike. He has missed the last two games with an ankle injury, however, it was never expected to keep him out for any significant length of time. The Bucks are also without a number of other key players and Pat Connaughton has stepped up over the last few games. His playing time has climbed and although he is somewhat one-dimensional, he can provide three-pointers and out-of-position rebounds.
Nets @ Lakers
The Nets turned around a three-game losing streak with an incredible comeback victory over the Kings on Tuesday. Outside of Allen Crabbe who has already been ruled out, the Nets have all their players available and will view this as a must-win game against a struggling Lakers team. There has been much talk about the fact the Lakers traded away D’Angelo Russell who has gone on to become as All-Star fort he Nets. Russell has been simply fantastic for the Nets and will certainly be looking for a big game against his former team.
The Lakers have won just one of their last 10 games as they move into full tank mode. LeBron James missed the last game with a groin injury, however, he is expected to return for Friday’s matchup. This is likely related to the injury he suffered earlier in the season and it wouldn’t be surprising to see him miss more games before the season ends. Alex Caruso had been trending up in many formats prior to his last game and could be worth a look once again to see if he can put that performance behind him.
Adam King is new to NBA writing for FantraxHQ. He also currently writes for Rotowire and has previously written for Locked on Fantasy Basketball and Locked on Timberwolves. He has played sports his entire life with fantasy basketball becoming a passion over the past six years. By day, Adam is the service coordinator at the Autism Centre in Canberra, Australia. Adam was born and raised in Queanbeyan, Australia and currently resides in Bungendore, Australia with his wife and two children.
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