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What's on the Schedule: Week 5

Fantasy Writer
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Fantasy Week 5 (Jan. 23-29) is the lightest thus far this season as there are 114 games scheduled over the next seven days. Most teams play four times this week, while seven teams are slated to play three times during the upcoming scoring period. Orlando is the only team scheduled to play five times during Week 5, which is why we chosen to highlight the Magic this week.

After playing four games last week, including three games over three consecutive days, the Magic will play five times during Week 5. However, Orlando will only play three different teams over that stretch, as Dwight Howard and Co. will face the Celtics and Pacers twice during the scoring period. The Magic start off the week with a back-to-back road set against Boston and Indiana on Monday and Tuesday, respectively. Orlando will then take on the Celtics for the second time in three days at home on Wednesday night, which will be followed by a game in New Orleans on Thursday. Orlando will close out the scoring period with its second matchup of the week against the Pacers on Sunday evening, concluding a stretch of nine games over 14 days.

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The Magic have played very well during the early part of the season, although this upcoming stretch of games could prove to be challenging. All three teams Orlando will face this week are ranked in the top 10 in points allowed this season, while Indiana and Boston are also ranked near the top in defensive efficiency. That seems to suggest the Magic could be in line for some grind-it-out type affairs over the next seven days, making it very difficult for Orlando to put up the 96.7 points per game it has been averaging thus far.

However, it also means coach Stan Van Gundy will likely need to use most of the healthy bodies on his bench, which makes this a great week to start the majority of Orlando's Fantasy options. In addition to the obvious choices of Dwight Howard, Ryan Anderson, Hedo Turkoglu, Jameer Nelson and Jason Richardson, Fantasy owners should make sure J.J. Redick and Glen Davis are active as well. Even Earl Clark and Von Wafer could be worth using in deeper formats.

Here are the other teams that have schedules that could help make those tough decisions a bit easier:

Southeast: Miami Heat (CLE, @DET, NY, CHI): The Heat are slated to play four times during Week 5 with three of those contests coming at home. Miami will start the scoring period with a home game against the Cavaliers on Tuesday night before heading up to Detroit for a matchup with the Pistons on Wednesday. After a day off, Miami will then draw a pair of home games to close out the scoring period as the Knicks and Bulls come to town on Friday and Sunday night, respectively. Not only do Cleveland, Detroit and New York all have losing records, but all three teams also rank near the bottom in terms of defensive efficiency thus far. That should mean another set of high scoring games for the Heat, who enter the week as the highest scoring team in the league, averaging 107 points per game. While LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade are all must-start options when healthy, this looks to be a good week to start some of Miami’s lower-tier Fantasy options. Owners should consider rolling with Udonis Haslem, Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole during the upcoming scoring period. Even Mike Miller and Shane Battier could be worth using in some deeper formats as well.

Southeast Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Hawks @MIL @SA @DET @NO
Bobcats NY @WAS @PHI WAS
Heat CLE @DET NY CHI
Magic @BOS @IND BOS @NO IND
Wizards @PHI CHA @HOU @CHA

Atlantic: Philadelphia 76ers (WAS, NJ, CHA, DET): The 76ers are scheduled to play four times during Week 5, with all four contests coming at home. Philadelphia will start with a game against the Wizards on Monday night, which will be the third meeting of the season between the two teams. The 76ers will then face the Nets on Wednesday night before wrapping up the scoring period with their seventh back-to-back set of the year against the Bobcats on Friday and Pistons on Saturday night. Coach Doug Collins has his team playing extremely well right now and the Sixers look to have some very favorable matchups on the docket. The Wizards, Nets and Bobcats all rank near the bottom of the pack in points allowed this season and Philadelphia scored 96 points during its lone meeting against Detroit this year. Fantasy owners should make sure to get Philly's main Fantasy options active heading into Week 5, including Andre Iguodala, Jrue Holliday, Elton Brand and Spencer Hawes. Even some of the lower-tier options such as Jodie Meeks could be worth starting in deeper formats this week.

Atlantic Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Celtics ORL @ORL IND CLE
Nets @CHI @PHI @CLE TOR
Knicks @CHA @CLE @MIA @HOU
76ers WAS NJ CHA DET
Raptors @PHO @UTA @DEN @NJ

Central: Chicago Bulls (NJ, IND, MIL, @MIA): After playing a pair of back-to-back sets last week, the Bulls are one of the few teams that don't play any during Week 5. Chicago is slated to play four times during the upcoming scoring period, with three of those contests coming at home. The Bulls will start with a game on Monday against the Nets before facing the Pacers on Wednesday night. Chicago will then take on the Bucks on Friday before wrapping things up against the Heat down in Miami on Sunday evening. The Pacers have been stingy on defense thus far, although Miami and New Jersey have not, while Milwaukee is currently ranked 17th in points allowed heading into the upcoming scoring period. Chicago has yet to lose at home this season and most of their main Fantasy options should have no problem getting their numbers during Week 5. While Derrick Rose will likely be an injury risk, Fantasy owners should make sure Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng, Joakim Noah are all active this week.

Central Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Bulls NJ IND MIL @MIA
Cavaliers @MIA NY NJ @BOS
Pistons @OKC MIA ATL @PHI
Pacers ORL @CHI @BOS @ORL
Bucks ATL @HOU @CHI LAL

Pacific: Los Angeles Lakers (LAC, @MIL, @MIN): After playing a league-high 18 games through the first four weeks of the season, the Lakers are only slated to play three times during Week 5. Los Angeles will be off on Monday and Tuesday before playing its first game of the scoring period on Wednesday against the Clippers. The Lakers will then get two more days off before wrapping up their week with a back-to-back set against the Bucks on Friday and Timberwolves on Sunday. While the Lakers' Fantasy studs should have no problems getting their numbers this week, some of the team's lower-tier options might have some trouble following suit, especially with only three games. Only Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum are worth starting in most formats this week.

Pacific Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Warriors MEM POR OKC
Clippers @LAL MEM @DEN
Lakers LAC @MIL @MIN
Suns @DAL TOR @POR MEM
Kings @POR DEN @UTA

Southwest: Dallas Mavericks (PHO, MIN, UTA, SA): The Mavericks have played four games in each of the last three weeks and that trend will continue in Week 5. Dallas has four home games slated for the upcoming scoring period and is one of the few teams not that don't have any back-to-back sets. The Mavericks will start with a game against the Suns on Monday, which will be followed by a visit from Kevin Love and the Timberwolves on Wednesday. Dallas will then face the Jazz on Friday before wrapping up the week against the Spurs on Sunday. While the Mavericks look to have some favorable matchups this week, keep in mind Dirk Nowitzki will likely miss most of the scoring period with a knee injury. That means Dallas' other Fantasy options should be in line to see a spike in production this week. Besides the obvious choices of Jason Kidd, Jason Terry, and Lamar Odom, Fantasy owners should make sure to get Shawn Marion, Brendan Haywood, Ian Mahinmi and Delonte West active as well. Even Roddy Beaubois and Yi Jianlian could be worth using in deeper formats.

Southwest Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Mavericks PHO MIN UTA SA
Rockets @MIN MIL WAS NY
Grizzlies @GS @POR @LAC @PHO
Hornets SA @OKC @ORL ATL
Spurs @NO ATL @MIN @DAL

Northwest: Portland Trail Blazers (SAC, MEM, @GS, PHO): We highlighted Portland's schedule last week as the Blazers were in the midst of their longest road trip of the season. However, that is over now and LaMarcus Aldridge and Co. are slated to play four games during Week 5, with three of those contests coming at home. The Blazers open the week with three games on three consecutive days, starting with Kings on Monday night. Portland will host the Grizzlies on Tuesday before playing its only road game of the week on Wednesday at Golden State. The Trail Blazers will then wrap up the week against the Suns on Saturday, concluding a stretch of seven games over 10 days. While playing that many games over such a small time frame could make for some tired legs, Portland looks to have some favorable matchups on the docket. Sacramento and Golden State are both ranked near the bottom of the pack in points allowed this season and Portland is averaging nearly 105 points per game at the Rose Garden. While Aldridge, Gerald Wallace, Wesley Matthews and Raymond Felton should almost always be left active, some of Portland's lower-end options should also be able to put up some numbers this week. Consider Jamal Crawford, Nicolas Batum and Marcus Camby all viable plays in most formats for Week 5.

Northwest Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Nuggets @SAC TOR LAC
T'Wolves @HOU @DAL SA LAL
Thunder DET NO @GS
Blazers SAC MEM @GS PHO
Jazz TOR @DAL SAC

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Player News
Nuggets SF Danilo Gallinari scores season-high 19 vs. Pacers
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(11:44 pm ET) Nuggets small forward Danilo Gallinari scored a season-high 19 points on 7 of 12 shooting in his team's 76-73 win over the Pacers Saturday.

Gallinari was able to lead his team in scoring while playing 28 minutes off the bench and taking at least 10 shots for the first time this season. He also tallied three rebounds and one assist in the low-scoring win. The Nuggets will square off with the Hornets Monday.


Rajon Rondo scores six points in Mavericks debut
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(11:40 pm ET) Rajon Rondo, who played his first eight-plus seasons with the Celtics, made his Mavericks debut on Saturday against the Spurs.

Rondo got the start alongside Monta Ellis, but had a hard time finding his shot. He finished the game with six points on 3 of 11 shooting from the field. He also added nine assists, seven rebounds and two steals while logging 34 minutes of game action.

"He's going to do great," coach Rick Carlisle said of Rondo, per Dallas Morning News. "He's really smart, picks things up quickly, so I don't see a big adjustment period. He's just got to get ready to compete with our guys."

Rondo is averaging 7.6 points, 10.2 assists, 7.6 rebounds and 2.0 steals over his last five games.


Pacers PF David West doubles up vs. Nuggets
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(11:37 pm ET) Pacers power forward David West scored a season-high 19 points on 8 of 22 shooting while grabbing 10 rebounds in his team's 76-73 loss to the Nuggets Saturday.

West didn't have a double-double before Wednesday but has managed to post two straight performances with at least 10 points and 10 rebounds. He led his team in both categories Saturday while kicking in five assists and one block in 32 minutes. The Pacers are set to square off with the Timberwolves Sunday.


Rockets G James Harden hands out career-high 14 assists
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(11:23 pm ET) Rockets shooting guard James Harden registered a career-high 14 assists in his team's 104-97 defeat to the Hawks on Saturday night.

Harden scored 18 points on 5 of 16 shooting from the floor, including 2 of 7 from downtown and a perfect 6 of 6 from the charity stripe. He also added six rebounds, one block and one steal while logging 39 minutes of game action.

He is averaging 29.6 points, 9.4 assists and 6.2 rebounds over his last five games.


Pelicans C Alexis Ajinca posts fourth career double-double
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10:54 pm ET) Pelicans center Alexis Ajinca only logged 15 minutes off the bench, but it was enough time for him to register a double-double in his team's 114-88 defeat to Portland at home Saturday night.

Ajinca, who made his first appearance since Dec. 12, scored 10 points on 4 of 7 shooting and 2 of 2 from the free throw line. He added 13 rebounds and one steal in a losing effort. Ajinca has four career double-doubles.


Trail Blazers F LaMarcus Aldridge registers 15th double-double
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10:43 pm ET) Trail Blazers power forward LaMarcus Aldridge registered his 15th double-double of the season Saturday night against the Pelicans.

Aldridge scored 27 points and grabbed 12 rebounds. He shot 12 of 20 from the field and knocked down all three of his free throw attempts. He also added two assists, two blocks and three steals while logging 29 minutes of game action in a 118-88 victory.

Aldridge is averaging 24.8 points and 14.2 rebounds over his last five games.


Kings' Sessions questionable, Evans and Casspi probable Sunday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10:34 pm ET) Kings point guard Ramon Sessions is questionable to play in Sunday's game against the Lakers due to a lower back strain, while forwards Reggie Evans (knee, hip) and Omri Casspi (knee) are probable for the game.

The Kings are a 7-point favorite for Sunday's home matchup with the Lakers.


Warriors C David Lee (hamstring) expected to return Monday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:45 pm ET) Warriors center David Lee is expected to return to the lineup Monday against the Kings, the Contra Costa Times reports. On Saturday, Lee went through his first full practice since reinjuring his hamstring in early November.

"He looked good, he was moving really well, his hamstring's fine," coach Steve Kerr said. "He told me everything else is sore now, which is a good sign. He's getting back into basketball shape and running a lot of sprints. But this was the first time he's scrimmaged full court, which was a good step."

"It's never easy to come back off an injury to a team that's winning," Kerr added. "It's tricky. It's a human nature thing, where you don't want to screw up what's going on, but at the same time, you want to make an impact. David's been an All-Star, a 20-and-10 guy his whole career, so it's tricky. I respect that. We're going to talk about that as a team (Sunday), not just in terms of David's situation but the impact it's going to have on everybody."

Lee played just seven minutes in his only appearance this season. He averaged 18.2 points and 9.3 rebounds in 69 games for the Warriors last season.


Bucks C Larry Sanders back in lineup Saturday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:37 pm ET) Bucks center Larry Sanders is back in the starting lineup for Saturday's game against the Clippers, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Sanders was suspended for Thursday's game against the Kings after shoving an airborne player on the way to the basket in his previous game. He has averaged 7.2 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 25 games.

The Bucks are a 10 1/2-point underdog against the Clippers in Los Angeles Saturday.


Bucks C John Henson (foot) remains sidelined Saturday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(9:29 pm ET) Bucks center John Henson (foot) will not play Saturday against the Clippers, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Henson tested his injured foot Friday but still experienced pain. He is scheduled to be re-evaluated Monday. The Bucks don't play against until Tuesday at home against the Hornets. Henson has averaged 4.2 points and 2.7 rebounds in 14 games.


 
 
 
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