Daily Fantasy Basketball Forecaster – Frank Jackson
Friday delivers us eight games across the league, including a number of playoff teams battling for position in their respective conference. The Trail Blazers come up against the team that knocked them out of last year’s post-season, albeit a very different looking squad. There is talk that Jrue Holiday could be shut down for the remainder of the season, in which case, Frank Jackson could be a borderline standard league player moving forward. There has been no definitive word on Holiday but it makes sense to stream Jackson in if you need points, and perhaps it could turn into a permanent roster spot for the rookie.
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- LeBron James – Lakers (rest – questionable)
- Lance Stephenson – Lakers (toe – questionable)
- Reggie Jackson – Pistons (ankle – questionable)
- Ben Simmons – 76ers (illness – probable)
- Cody Zeller – Hornets (knee – doubtful)
- Trevor Ariza – Wizards (ankle – questionable)
- Dwyane Wade – Heat (elbow – questionable)
- Tyler Johnson – Suns (knee – questionable)
- Rodney Hood – Trail Blazers (hip – probable)
- Moe Harkless – Trail Blazers (knee – questionable)
- Seth Curry – Trail Blazers (illness – questionable)
- Jrue Holiday – Pelicans (abdominal strain – out)
- E’Twaun Moore – Pelicans (quad – out)
- Dennis Smith Jr. – Knicks (back – questionable)
- Rudy Gay – Spurs (illness – probable)
- Zach LaVine – Bulls (knee – probable)
- Otto Poter – Bulls (knee – probable)
- Danilo Gallinari – Clippers (ankle – questionable)
- Wayne Ellington – Pistons (three-pointers)
- Ish Smith – Pistons (assists, Jackson injury)
- Frank Kaminsky – Hornets (points, three-pointers)
- Thomas Bryant – Wizards (rebounds, blocks)
- Dion Waiters – Heat (points, three-pointers)
- Gerald Green – Rockets (three-pointers)
- Jake Layman – Trail Blazers (multiple injuries)
- Cheick Diallo – Pelicans (rebounds, FG%)
- Frank Jackson – Pelicans (points)
- Darius Miller – Pelicans (three-pointers)
- Emmanuel Mudiay – Knicks (points, Smith injury)
- Damyean Dotson – Knicks (points, three-pointers)
- Allonzo Trier – Knicks (points)
- Jakob Poeltl – Spurs (rebounds, blocks)
- Bryn Forbes – Spurs (three-pointers)
- Patty Mills – Spurs (three-pointers)
- Marco Belinelli – Spurs (three-pointers)
- Ryan Arcidiacono – Bulls (LaVine injury)
- Ivica Zubac – Clippers (rebounds)
- JaMychal Green – Clippers (rebounds)
- Landry Shamet – Clippers (three-pointers)
NBA Matchups for Friday, March 15
Lakers @ Pistons
The Lakers are winding down already and the second night of a back-to-back set could see LeBron James in street clothes Friday. They have lost eight of their last 10 games and are simply now playing for draft picks. From a fantasy perspective, the value is going to be difficult to predict with their rotations likely to change from night-to-night.
The Pistons are coming off two terrible losses and will need to bounce back against a struggling Lakers team. Reggie Jackson suffered an ankle injury in the loss to the Heat and has been listed as questionable heading into Friday. Jackson himself claimed it was not serious but given his history of ankle injuries, the Pistons may choose to play it safe. If he is ruled out, Ish Smith becomes a must-roster player in many formats.
Kings @ 76ers
The Kings lost to the Celtics on Thursday, a loss that basically puts them out of the playoff picture. They are now five games behind the eighth-seeded Clippers and face a 76ers team that needs to keep winning themselves. Marvin Bagley returned in Thursday’s loss, finishing with 14 points and six rebounds in 19 minutes. Assuming there were no setbacks, he should be good to go Friday and should be picked up if he was dropped in your league.
After the Pacers won Thursday, the 76ers once again find themselves in the fourth seed. They will likely be doing all they can to avoid the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs and the best way to do that is to keep winning. Ben Simmons is probable heading into Friday’s game and it appears as though the illness will not cost him any games.
Hornets @ Wizards
Both the Hornets and the Wizards are battling to get into the Eastern Conference playoffs, but remain on the outside looking in at this stage. The Hornets have lost seven of their past nine games and appear as though they are going to be without Cody Zeller Friday. Zeller is suffering from a sore knee and given his history of knee concerns, there is a decent chance he misses even more time. Willy Hernangomez will continue to see an uptick in his playing time but offers very little from a fantasy perspective and is not really an option in any 12-team format.
The Wizards sit one win behind the Hornets but have been playing well over the past two weeks. Trevor Ariza has been struggling, however, and an apparent knee injury could have something to do with it. He is questionable heading into Friday’s game and if he indeed misses the game, his minutes will likely be shared by a number of players as opposed to going to one certain individual.
Bucks @ Heat
The Bucks have been far from consistent over the past two weeks, but are still holding onto the top seed in the East. They currently sit 2.5 games ahead of the Raptors, with Friday’s game a chance to extend that margin. Outside of six players, the Bucks have very little fantasy value, even in the deeper formats. Pat Connaughton has been contributing over the past two games but is too hard to trust in competitive leagues.
Dwyane Wade is a chance to miss Friday’s game with an elbow injury and that could result in a larger role for Dion Waiters. Waiters has scored in double-digits in two consecutive games but could see his playing time creep above 30 minutes if Wade is ruled out. He is purely a points and three-point streamer but in an expanded role, could chip in assists and steals.
Suns @ Rockets
Tyler Johnson is in danger of missing his first game for the Suns after suffering an apparent knee injury. While it doesn’t appear too serious, the Suns have no incentive to force the issue and could play it safe. If he is on the sidelines, it is unclear how the Suns will play the rotations. Either Elie Okobo or De’Anthony Melton could move into the starting lineup, however, Devin Booker could also assume the point guard role. If that is the case, Josh Jackson would come into the starting lineup and could, himself, see increased production.
The Rockets occupy the third seed in the West and are still a chance of catching the Nuggets who sit 3.5 games ahead. The Rockets lost their first game in three weeks against the Warriors just two night prior and will be looking to get back in the winners’ circle. Gerald Green has seen his playing time dip over the past three games but is still providing consistent perimeter scoring. He has hit multiple three-pointers in five straight games and is certainly worth considering if you need threes.
Trail Blazers @ Pelicans
The Trail Blazers are currently tied with the Thunder for the fourth seed in the West and would like to hold on to ensure home-court advantage in round one of the playoffs. Moe Harkless has turned his season around over the past month but a knee injury could cost him Friday’s game. He has suffered multiple knee injuries over the past 12 months and there is a very real chance he misses time here. If that is the case, Jake Layman could move back into streaming territory.
Head coach Alvin Gentry has speculated that both Jrue Holiday and E’Twaun Moore could be shut down for the remainder of the season. To be clear, there is nothing official but it certainly seems like a very real possibility. It would be a blow for those in their fantasy playoffs who have been holding Holiday for the past week. Frank Jackson has stepped up in Holiday’s absence and would continue to be a nice source of points moving forward. If you need to free up a roster spot, letting go of Holiday might be a move you have to consider.
Knicks @ Spurs
Dennis Smith Jr. could miss Friday’s game with a back injury, perhaps accounting for his subpar efforts in the last game. The Knicks have absolutely no reason to risk Smith and could give him the night off to rest the injury. If he is ruled out, Emmanuel Mudiay would likely come into the starting lineup and would make for a solid streaming option in basically all formats.
The Spurs are currently the hottest team in the league, winning their last six consecutive games. Rudy Gay has missed the past two games due to illness but appears set to make his return Friday. That will likely result in a reduced role for Davis Bertans and to a lesser extent, Jakob Poeltl. Gay had been playing well prior to the illness and there will hopefully be no minutes restriction upon him getting back on the court.
Bulls @ Clippers
Both Zach LaVine and Otto Porter are probable for Friday’s game, much to the relief of their fantasy owners. Ryan Arcidiacono had seen an uptick in his playing time with LaVine on the sidelines but should go back to a 20-minute bench role moving forward, leaving him as more of a deep league streaming option.
The Clippers look set to squeeze into the playoffs despite their mid-season trades. Their acquisitions have been playing well, especially over the past week or so. Landry Shamet has connected on multiple three-pointers in six straight games, hitting a combined total of 23 in that period. Danilo Gallinari is questionable with an ankle concern and if he is ruled out, Shamet would likely have to shoulder more on the offensive end.