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What's on the Schedule: Week 11

Fantasy Writer
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After two straight shortened scoring periods, things return to normal during Fantasy Week 11 (March 5-11). There are 57 games scheduled over the next seven days and 29 of the 30 NBA teams will play at least three times during the period. With only a few weeks left before the start of the playoffs in most Fantasy leagues, it is important for Fantasy owners to set the best lineup possible as they make their final push toward the postseason. To help, we have highlighted the seven teams which have the most intriguing schedules this week.

The Dallas Mavericks are the only team slated to play five times this week after playing four games the week following the All-Star break. Dallas is starting a grueling stretch in which it will play nine games over 12 days, including six of those contests on the road. The Mavericks will start the week in Oklahoma City for a matchup with the Thunder before heading home to face the Knicks Tuesday night. After a day off, Dallas will embark on its lone triple set of the season starting Thursday night at Phoenix. The Mavericks will then be in Sacramento Friday against the Kings before closing out the period Saturday night at Golden State.

With so many games crammed into such a small time frame, fatigue could certainly be a factor, especially near the end of the week. However, Dirk Nowitzki and crew do look to have some favorable matchups on tap. Three of the five teams Dallas will face are ranked in the bottom five in points allowed this season and the Mavericks have scored more than 100 points in two of their three contests against the Thunder. New York has also shown some flaws defensively of late, so we fully anticipate the Mavericks being able to score some points this week. Coach Rick Carlisle could be forced to go to his bench a bit more than usual over this crowded stretch, which makes this a good week to get most of Dallas' main Fantasy options active. While Nowtizki is a must-start option, Fantasy owners should make sure to get Jason Terry, Shawn Marion and Jason Kidd active this week. Even Brendan Haywood and the suddenly emerging Roddy Beaubois deserve some consideration in most leagues.

Southwest: San Antonio Spurs (NY, LAC) We highlighted the Spurs' schedule last week, but with San Antonio the lone team with just two games on the docket we felt it pertinent to mention them again. The Spurs will play their first game of the scoring period on Wednesday against the Knicks before wrapping things up on Friday against the Clippers. While both games are at home, two games don't leave much room for error and one poor performance could really put Fantasy owners in a hole. As a result, we don't recommend using most of the Spurs' Fantasy options this week. Only Tony Paker should be left active in most formats.

Southwest Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Mavericks @OKC NY @PHO @SAC @GS
Rockets @BOS @TOR @NJ @CLE
Grizzlies @GS @PHO @DEN
Hornets @POR @SAC @DEN @MIN
Spurs NY LAC

Northwest: Denver Nuggets (SAC, CLE, NO, MEM) The Nuggets are slated to play four games during Week 11 and are the only team to will play four games without any back-to-back sets. Denver will start the week with a matchup against the Kings Monday night before welcoming the Cavaliers to town Wednesday. The Nuggets will then host New Orleans Friday and wrap up the period Sunday against the Grizzlies. While Denver looks to have some favorable matchups on the docket, the Nuggets are a team going through transition. Nene, Danilo Gallinari and Rudy Fernandez are all expected to return this week, which will likely throw a monkey wrench into coach George Karl's current rotation. Corey Brewer and Kenneth Faried will likely have their minutes affected the most this week. Plus, Timofey Mozgov, Kosta Koufos, Arron Afflalo and even Al Harington could see their playing time take a small hit. Because of all the uncertainty surrounding Denver's rotation at the moment, we would caution Fantasy owners about using some of the team's options. Sure Gallinari and Nene can be plugged back into most lineups as soon as they return, but Ty Lawson looks to be the only other sure bet this week. Owners should consider the rest of Denver's pieces risky plays -- at best -- for the upcoming scoring period.

Northwest Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Nuggets SAC CLE NO MEM
T'Woves LAC POR LAL NO
Thunder DAL PHO CLE CHA
Trail Blazers NO @MIN @BOS @WAS
Jazz @CLE @CHA @PHI @CHI

Pacific: Los Angeles Lakers (@DET, @WAS, @MIN, BOS) The Lakers are slated to play four times during Week 11, although three of those contests will be on the road. Los Angeles will start the week in Detroit to take on the Pistons Tuesday night. Kobe Bryant and Co. will then face the Wizards Wednesday before wrapping up their three-game road trip against the Timberwolves Friday night. Los Angeles will close out the scoring period against the Celtics Sunday in the Staples Center, concluding a stretch of four games in eight days. While the Lakers have struggled to score points on the road this season, they look to have some favorable matchups this week. The Pistons and Wizards are both ranked in the bottom of the league in opponent field-goal percentage, while Washington is one of the few teams allowing more than 100 points per game this season. Detroit and Minnesota are surrendering 95.9 and 96.5 points per game, respectively. However, Los Angeles was able to put up more than 100 points in both its meetings against the Timberwolves this year. Sure, the Celtics will likely put up a tough defensive effort, but Boston has allowed 100.6 points over its last five contests. With the way the Lakers have been clicking on offense of late, this looks to be a good week to give some of their mid-range options some run. Outside of must-start options, Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, Metta World Peace and Matt Barnes could also be worth a look. Even Steve Blake and Derek Fisher could be worth using in deeper formats.

Pacific Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Warriors @WAS MEM DAL @LAC
Clippers @MIN @NJ @SA GS
Lakers @DET @WAS @MIN BOS
Suns @OKC DAL MEM
Kings @DEN NO DAL ATL

Atlantic: Toronto Raptors (ORL, HOU, @DET, MIL) The Raptors are slated to play four times during Week 11 and will play three of those contests north of the border. Toronto will take on the Magic Monday night before welcoming the Rockets to town on Wednesday. After a few days off, the Raptors will wrap up the scoring period with a back-to-back set at Detroit Friday before returning home to take on the Bucks Saturday. While Toronto has had a tough time scoring points this season, it looks to have some favorable matchups this week. Houston and Detroit are both ranked near the bottom of the league in opponent field-goal percentage and Toronto was able to put up 96 and 99 points, respectively, in its lone matchups with the Magic and Bucks earlier in the year. The Raptors are also averaging nearly five points more at home this season than on the road, so this could be one of the rare weeks where owners want to think about using some of the club's mid-range options. Other than DeMar DeRozan and Jose Calderon, make sure to get Amir Johnson, James Jones and Linas Kleiza active. For those owners feeling extremely brave, Jerryd Bayless, Ed Davis and Leandro Barbosa could also be worth a look in deeper leagues.

Atlantic Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Celtics HOU @PHI POR @LAL
Nets @MIA LAC @CHA HOU
Knicks @DAL @SA @MIL PHI
76ers @MIL BOS UTA @NY
Raptors ORL HOU @DET MIL

Central: Milwaukee Bucks (PHI, CHI, NY, @TOR) The Bucks are one of 23 teams slated to play four times during Week 11. Milwaukee will begin the week with three straight home games, starting Monday night against the 76ers. The Bucks will take on the Bulls Wednesday and then the Knicks Friday before closing the week in Canada against the Raptors Sunday. While Milwaukee appears to have some tough matchups on tap, the Bucks do have the advantage of playing in the Bradley Center. Coach Scott Skiles' club has been more efficient offensively at home this season, averaging 99.1 points compared to just 92.4 points on the road. Despite the defensive prowess of the Bulls, 76ers and even Knicks to a certain degree, Milwaukee's offensive efficiency at home is too hard to ignore. The Bucks have plenty of Fantasy options not named Brandon Jennings and Ersan Ilyasova who could help owners earn a win this week. Make sure to get the now-healthy Drew Gooden active this week as well as Carlos Delfino and Mike Dunleavy.

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

Southeast: Washington Wizards (GS, LAL, POR) The Wizards are slated to play three games -- all at home -- during Week 11. Washington will start the week with a matchup against the Warriors Monday before the Lakers come to town Wednesday. After a few days off, the Wizards will wrap up the scoring period against Portland Saturday night. While Golden State shouldn't provide much of a defensive challenge, the same cannot be said about the Lakers and Trail Blazers. Both teams have been particularly stingy on defense this season -- especially Los Angeles -- which could make points tough to come by for the Wizards. Coach Randy Wittman has been shaking up his rotation of late, which is a trend that could continue this week. He benched Nick Young and JaVale McGee recently and has been giving veterans Maurice Evans and Roger Mason Jr. extra minutes. With no clear-cut rotation and a tough schedule on tap, owners may want to avoid some of Washington's mid-range options. Other than John Wall and maybe McGee, there aren't many risk-free options on the roster. Jordan Crawford's recent play should be reason enough to get him active in deeper formats, but there is still some risk there.

Southeast Division schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Hawks @IND @MIA @DET @SAC
Bobcats ORL UTA NJ @OKC
Heat NJ ATL IND
Magic @TOR @CHA @CHI IND
Wizards GS LAL POR

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Player News
Heat add Reggie Williams
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(8/16/2014) The Heat signed guard Reggie Williams to a free-agency contract last week, the team announced. Terms of the deal are not known.

Williams appeared in just three games for the Thunder last season, and has played 180 games over parts of five NBA seasons. He averages 8.5 points, 2.6 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game, while shooting 46.0 percent from the field and 37.1 percent from three-point range for his career.  


Isaiah Thomas undergoes wrist surgery
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(8/15/2014) Suns newcomer Isaiah Thomas underwent arthroscopic surgery on his left wrist, the team announced Thursday.

Thomas dealt with a sprained wrist last season but was able to play through it on his way to a career year. An MRI in February revealed no ligament damage, which would indicate this latest procedure is nothing to worry about. The team expects him to be ready for training camp. 


DeMarcus Cousins avoids serious injury at Team USA practice
by Joe Polito | CBSSports.com
(8/15/2014) Kings center DeMarcus Cousins dodged a bullet Thursday when the MRI on his right knee came back negative.

According to Yahoo Sports, Cousins limped off the court during a Team USA training session after Anthony Davis landed on his knee during a scrimmage. Cousins later tweeted that he was "fine," helping to suppress any concerns of a serious injury. 


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(8/11/2014) The Pacers are shopping center Roy Hibbert, and they have called the Pistons regarding a potential deal involving restricted free agent Greg Monroe, Detroit Sports 105.1 reports.

There's no word about whether the Pistons would be interested in a Monroe-for-Hibbert spot, but they are pretty well set in the middle with Andre Drummond in the starting lineup. It's a rumor that seemingly has very little chance of coming to fruition.


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by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8/11/2014) The Rockets have signed small forward Kostas Papanikolaou .

Papanikolaou gets $4.8 million guaranteed in the upcoming season, with a team option of $4.6 million for the following season. He has been playing in Europe since being drafted in the second round of the 2012 draft.


Report: Greg Oden faces felony charge
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8/11/2014) Free agent Greg Oden is facing a felony charge after allegedly attacking his former girlfriend after a night of drinking, the Indianapolis Star reports.

Oden is accused of punching the woman in the face three times and fracturing a bone in her nose, according to court documents. The felony offense carries a penaly of one-to-six years in prison.


Markel Brown out with broken hand
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(8/11/2014) Nets guard Markel Brown will be held out of basketball activities for four-to-six weeks after being diagnosed with a nondisplaced fracture of the fourth metacarpal in his right hand, the team announced Monday.

Brown was selected 44th overall in this year's draft, and the Nets acquired him for cash considerations on the night of the draft. He averaged 17.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists in his senior season at Oklahoma State.


Report: Wolves to swap Anthony Bennett for Thaddeus Young
by Joe Polito | CBSSports.com
(8/8/2014) Though the trade can't go official until August 23, the deal reportedly struck between the Cavaliers and Timberwolves will lead to another trade between Minnesota and the 76ers.

The Philadelphia Daily News reported early Friday that Minnesota, upon receiving Anthony Bennett from the Cavs as part of the Kevin Love trade, would then trade him for Thaddeus Young. The Timberwolves have been showing interest in Young since Love stated his desire to be traded.

Meanwhile, the 76ers want to move Young because he's entering his prime at age 26 and only has one additional year left on his contract. Acquiring Bennett would complete a core of young talent to develop over the coming years. Young was one of the most productive forwards in the league last year playing in Brett Brown's up-tempo offense, averaging 17.9 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game. Bennett, on the other hand, failed to make any impact what so ever but did show signs of growth during the Summer League. 


Landing in Minnesota should improve Andrew Wiggins' value
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(8/7/2014) The prize of the trade that ultimately sent Kevin Love to Cleveland will likely be the Timberwolves' acquisition of No. 1 overall pick Andrew Wiggins , assuming there are no unexpected changes in the deal the two sides agreed to.

If Wiggins does ultimately land in Minnesota, as expected, this should be a boon to his Fantasy value. Though Wiggins will have substantially less help as he makes the transition to the NBA than he would have in Cleveland, he is also likely to be much more of a featured option than he otherwise might have been.

Wiggins was likely going to be the third or possibly even fourth offensive option for the Cavs, and likely would have been so for some time, given the presence of LeBron James and Kyrie Irving on long-term deals. Now, the Timberwolves get to build around Wiggins as their long-term centerpiece, and he should be given plenty of rope as the team tries to navigate their upcoming rebuild.

Wiggins is raw, but still put up 17.1 points and 5.9 rebounds in 32.8 minutes per game as a freshman at the University of Kansas. There are some questions about how well his game will translate to the NBA, but he will at least have some help, in the form of point guard Ricky Rubio, who knows exactly how to set up teammates for shots they like.

Wiggins is mostly upside right now, but should be considered a second-round pick in all keeper-league Fantasy formats. In yearly re-draft leagues, he is more of a mid-round option at this point, albeit one with tremendous upside. 


Anthony Bennett a bit more intriguing following trade
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(8/7/2014) After a rookie season that can be charitably described as lost, a change of scenery is probably the best outcome Anthony Bennett could have hoped for this offseason. He got that Thursday, with the news that the long-awaited Kevin Love trade has landed him in Minnesota.

Last year's No. 1 overall pick luckily doesn't have to join the Cavaliers with the pressure of replacing Love as the face of the franchise -- this year's No. 1 pick, Andrew Wiggin, will take that on. Bennett gets to join a Timberwolves team that can give him more consistent playing time than last year's Cavaliers afforded him, but which won't ask him to do more than he is capable.

Bennett might end up starting at power forward for the Wolves, though a bench role seems more likely at this point. He had a disastrous rookie season after entering the season out of shape, but appeared to be in better shape while playing with the Cavaliers during the Summer League in Las Vegas. He still shot the ball poorly in Vegas -- 42.6 percent from the field and just 4 of 16 from three-point range -- but Bennett looked much more capable during his time there.

Based on his rookie season, Bennett has a long way to go before he is contributing at a high level. However, Fantasy owners in deeper category-based leagues should consider taking a chance on the 21-year-old in the later rounds, because he will have the chance to earn a large role if he proves worthy. 


 
 
 
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