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Week 14 Start 'Em and Sit 'Em

Fantasy Writer
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At this point in this particular season, we would like to think we're all experts on injuries, and exactly which way the fallout from each one will blow.

And sometimes, we do a pretty good job. Kemba Walker goes down, and picking up and starting Ramon Sessions is a perfectly reasonable move to make -- it is also one that has worked out pretty well so far.

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Of course, so much of success in basketball derives from ineffable qualities, making it difficult, if not impossible, to determine exactly how the dominoes will fall at any given time. When we saw Rudy Gay and DeMarcus Cousins go down with seemingly serious injuries last week, it looked like an obvious chance for us to get one right, with Derrick Williams especially looming as an obvious replacement for Gay in particular.

Of course, in a career that has been marked by disappointment above all else, it shouldn't come as a terribly big surprise that Williams flopped in the first post-Gay game. Though he played 34 minutes and took nine shots, Williams ended up with just seven points, putting him all of 35 points behind Marcus Thornton, who stepped up to fill the scoring void in a big way.

Williams should do better than that with Gay out, but his struggles point to just how difficult it is to predict which players will take advantage of their larger roles. With Gay likely to miss at least some time moving forward while recovering from his strained Achilles, Williams will be active in plenty of Fantasy lineups for Week 14 (Jan. 27-Feb. 2), but don't be surprised if he turns out to be a letdown -- it wouldn't be the first time.

(All stats up to date through Jan. 25 games)

Atlanta Hawks

The Hawks' rotation is ever-evolving, as another injury looks likely to shake things up in the coming weeks. With Pero Antic expected to miss at least a few weeks with a fractured ankle and Jeff Teague dealing with an ankle injury that could cost him at least a few games this week, the Hawks are left looking for two more new starters. Gustavo Ayon seems likely to slide into the starting lineup now, but he probably won't make much of an impact from a Fantasy perspective. Shelvin Mack seems more likely to contribute for Fantasy owners, as he is averaging 21.6 Fantasy points per game over the last five and should get at least one start this week. As a low-end flier, Mack has some upside in Week 14, while Teague is a risky start as he will miss at least Monday's game.

Schedule: Schedule: @OKC, DET, @PHI, MIN
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 3rd
10-team starters: Paul Millsap
12-to-14-team starters: Kyle Korver, Jeff Teague
Deep-league fliers: DeMarre Carroll, Mike Scott, Shelvin Mack, Lou Williams, Pero Antic, Elton Brand

Boston Celtics

Clearly, the Celtics didn't trade Jordan Crawford to free up room for Rajon Rondo's return. No, they simply made the obvious call to clear space for undrafted rookie Phil Pressey, who has been unleashed on the league recently. In all seriousness, Pressey certainly looks like someone worth keeping an eye on for Fantasy purposes, and he might even be a low-end starting option in deeper formats for Week 14. The Celtics look likely to rest Rondo on back-to-backs for the time being, which means Pressey could be looking at a huge role yet again either Tuesday or Wednesday. He put up 27 Fantasy points in a start Wednesday and is averaging 19.8 Fantasy points per game over the last five.

Schedule: @NY, PHI, ORL
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 7th
10-team starters: Jared Sullinger
12-to-14-team starters: Jeff Green
Deep-league fliers: Rajon Rondo, Phil Pressey, Chris Johnson, Kris Humphries, Brandon Bass, Kelly Olynyk

Brooklyn Nets

Guards we like for Week 14
Player Own/Start
1. Rodney Stuckey, Pistons 49/20
2. Greivis Vasquez, Raptors 59/21
3. D.J. Augustin, Bulls 81/58
4. Terrence Ross, Raptors 46/21
5. Ramon Sessions, Bobcats 60/33
6. Kyle Korver, Hawks 78/53
7. Gerald Green, Suns 67/40
8. Jamal Crawford, Clippers 93/73
9. J.J. Redick, Clippers 80/51
10. Alec Burks, Jazz 58/17

Deron Williams is back, but still limited to a bench role as the team tries to ease him back into action. His production has been passable in two games since returning, and it looks like he should once again return to must-start status whenever the reins are removed. For now, he is still more of a low-end starting option, especially with a trio fo very tough matchups on the way for Week 14. With such a difficult schedule, Joe Johnson is the only player who is a must-start for the Nets, though a rejuvenated Paul Pierce and Andray Blatche are not terrible options either.

Schedule: TOR, OKC, @IND
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 27th
10-team starters: Joe Johnson
12-to-14-team starters: Paul Pierce, Deron Williams, Andray Blatches
Deep-league fliers: Shaun Livingston, Mirza Teletovic, Kevin Garnett, Jason Terry, Alan Anderson, Andrei Kirilenko

Charlotte Bobcats

Ramon Sessions has put up 16.5 points and 5.0 assists in two games since Kemba Walker's ankle injury, and that is about what Fantasy owners should be expecting from him moving forward. He is by no means a must-start option while filling in for Walker, but he will be a very useful Fantasy option as long as he remains part of the starting lineup. Walker's injury has probably opened the door up for Josh McRoberts to return to relevance as well, as he is averaging 12.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game in Walker's absence. Both players should be considered solid options for Fantasy purposes in Week 14, as they should be involved in a series of track meets against three of the league's fastest teams.

Schedule: @DEN, @LAL, @PHO
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 4th
10-team starters: Al Jefferson, Gerald Henderson
12-to-14-team starters: Josh McRoberts, Ramon Sessions
Deep-league fliers: Anthony Tolliver, Jannero Pargo, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

Chicago Bulls

I'm not sure who has been more impressive recently; Joakim Noah or D.J. Augustin. Noah's numbers (14.4 points, 15.0 rebounds, 5.3 assists per game in January) are more impressive, but he has also proven himself to be an elite player in recent years. Augustin, on the other hand, has barely been an NBA-caliber contributor over the last two years, making his 15.7 points and 6.4 assists per game in the month all the more impressive. For Fantasy purposes, Noah has to be considered a must-start Fantasy option for Week 14 and beyond, and Augustin is nearing that point. Augustin ranks 22nd in Fantasy scoring over the last month, but is still unowned in 21 percent of CBSSports.com Fantasy leagues. With a couple of really nice matchups sandwiched around a tough game against the Spurs, Augustin should be in most Fantasy starting lineups this week.

Schedule: MIN, @SA, @NO
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 13th
10-team starters: Joakim Noah, D.J. Augustin
12-to-14-team starters: Carlos Boozer, Jimmy Butler
Deep-league fliers: Mike Dunleavy, Tony Snell, Taj Gibson, Kirk Hinrich

Cleveland Cavaliers

Luol Deng's addition has had the expected impact on the Cavaliers, solidifying the small forward position and bringing a semblance of order to the starting lineup. Kyrie Irving is scoring 20 points per game, C.J. Miles is limited to spot-up 3-pointers, and Tristan Thompson and Anderson Varejao are throwing up double-doubles as a matter of habit. This is what this team is supposed to be, and probably will be moving forward. Week 14 presents a pretty solid slew of matchups for the Cavaliers, but now that their rotation is settled, there isn't much here for Fantasy owners beyond the top-4.

Schedule: NO, @NY, @HOU
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 9th
10-team starters: Kyrie Irving, Luol Deng
12-to-14-team starters: Anderson Varejao, Tristan Thompson
Deep-league fliers: Dion Waiters, C.J. Miles, Jarrett Jack, Tyler Zeller

Dallas Mavericks

Devin Harris' return has not made a big impact on the team's rotations recently, though Jose Calderon's playing time has taken a slight hit. In three games since Harris returned, Calderon is averaging just 27.4 minutes per game, compared to 31.3 minutes per game for the season. Calderon's production has been a bit disappointing this season for Fantasy purposes, since he has served as more of a spot-up shooter and secondary ball handler for the Mavericks. With only two games on the schedule, Calderon can be benched in most Fantasy formats for Week 14.

Schedule: HOU, SAC
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 20th
10-team starters: Dirk Nowitzki, Monta Ellis
12-to-14-team starters: None
Deep-league fliers: Vince Carter, Shawn Marion, Jose Calderon, Brandan Wright, Samuel Dalembert, DeJuan Blair

Denver Nuggets

Nuggets coach Brian Shaw only really trusts a handful of players, so he tends to stick with the hot hand in any given game. Over the last five games, Evan Fournier has played 30-plus minutes twice, and fewer than 20 minutes in each of the other three games, for instance. Kenneth Faried has seen a similarly inconsistent role, and that goes for pretty much any of the team's role players. So, while Anthony Randolph might be the flavor of the moment (31 points in the last two games), he is just as likely to earn three DNP's this week. With just two games on the schedule, I don't trust anyone but Ty Lawson and J.J. Hickson and their steady threat of a nightly double-double in most Fantasy formats.

Schedule: CHA, TOR
Strength-of-schedule ranking:28th
10-team starters: Ty Lawson, J.J. Hickson
12-to-14-team starters: Wilson Chandler, Randy Foye
Deep-league fliers: Kenneth Faried, Timofey Mozgov, Nate Robinson, Evan Founier, Anthony Randolph

Detroit Pistons

Having overcome his shoulder woes, Rodney Stuckey is back at it, putting up similar numbers to the ones that made him such a useful Fantasy option early in the season. Stuckey missed five games and parts of others in the month of December with lingering shoulder issues, and saw his scoring drop to just 10.3 points per game. As a result, he is now owned in just 49-percent of CBSSports.com leagues, despite posting four 20-plus point games in a row. His re-emergence has taken some shine off the rest of the team's rotation, but they should find a balance in Week 14. The Pistons remain eternally frustrating for Fantasy purposes, but Week 14 features enough enticing matchups to make your Pistons worth relying on.

Schedule: ORL, @ATL, PHI
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 4th
10-team starters: Josh Smith, Greg Monroe, Andre Drummond, Brandon Jennings
12-to-14-team starters: Rodney Stuckey
Deep-league fliers: Will Bynum, Kyle Singler, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

Golden State Warriors

The Warriors will undoubtedly find a way to integrate Jordan Crawford into the rotation down the road, after he played just 42 minutes total in his first three games. Still, he likely isn't going to impact the team's rotations too much, and is probably not going to be much of a Fantasy contributor himself either. Warriors don't have a bad set of matchups for Week 14, but they remain very boring for Fantasy purposes.

Schedule: WAS, LAC, @UTA
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 22nd
10-team starters: Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, David Lee
12-to-14-team starters: Andre Iguodala
Deep-league fliers: Harrison Barnes, Andrew Bogut, Jordan Crawford, Marreese Speights

Houston Rockets

Hopefully Terrence Jones can find his way after missing a couple of games with a thigh injury. He was enjoying the finest stretch of his career, averaging 16.9 points and 11.4 rebounds per game in the month of January, and was looking like a must-start Fantasy option. As long as Jones is playing, he should be considered strong starting option in all Fantasy formats, though his first two games back from injury have not been particularly promising.

Schedule: SA, @DAL, CLE
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 21st
10-team starters: James Harden, Dwight Howard, Chandler Parsons, Terrence Jones
12-to-14-team starters: Jeremy Lin, Patrick Beverley
Deep-league fliers: Donatas Motiejuanas, Aaron Brooks, Francisco Garcia, Omri Casspi

Indiana Pacers

The Pacers have just four players averaging at least 20 Fantasy points per game in the month of January, and only two clear that pretty low bar with ease. The features that make the Pacers so good in real life -- a slow pace and dominant defense -- also limit their potential for producing impactful Fantasy options. Even with a strong set of matchups on the way, Lance Stephenson and Paul George are the only players here likely to end up anything more than borderline starting options in Week 14.

Schedule: @LAL, PHO, BKN
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 8th
10-team starters: Paul George, Lance Stephenson
12-to-14-team starters: David West, Roy Hibbert
Deep-league fliers: George Hill, Luis Scola, C.J. Watson, Danny Granger

Los Angeles Clippers

Though Darren Collison has been tasked with filling Chris Paul's place in the lineup, it is Jamal Crawford who has been making up for Paul's missing presence more than anyone. Oh sure, Crawford can't possibly account for the team's playmaking deficit -- Blake Griffin is averaging more assists per game over the last five, in fact. What Crawford can do is reasonably replicate the lost shot creation by coming up with offense for himself. Crawford is averaging 32.1 Fantasy points per game since Paul's injury, and should be considered a must-start Fantasy option for Week 14, especially with four games on the way.

Schedule: @MIL, WAS, @GS, UTA
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 27th
10-team starters: Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan, J.J. Redick, Jamal Crawford
12-to-14-team starters: None
Deep-league fliers: Jared Dudley, Matt Barnes

Los Angeles Lakers

Forwards we like for Week 14
Player Own/Start
1. Ersan Ilyasova, Bucks 83/30
2. Derrick Williams, Kings 49/20
3. Caron Butler, Bucks 29/8
4. Jason Thompson, Kings 37/19
5. Kris Humphries, Celtics 64/38
6. Markieff Morris, Suns 66/35
7. Josh McRoberts, Bobcats 58/35
8. James Johnson, Grizzlies 34/16
9. Mike Scott, Hawks 15/7
10. P.J. Tucker, Suns 37/19

You've been put on notice, Kendall Marshall owners. Though Marshall has surprisingly turned into a double-double machine for the injury-riddled Lakers, his place as the team's lone option at point guard is tenuous at best. Though Marshall is averaging 11.5 points and 11.7 assists per game as a starter, the Lakers are just 3-8 in those games, and with a number of veteran options working their way back from injury. The first of those veterans could be back during Week 14, with Steve Nash slated to return from nerve issues Tuesday. Though Nash's return is unlikely to make a big impact on Marshall's production, given Nash's likely role, this could be the beginning of the end of Marshall's time as a starting Fantasy option. You might not even get to enjoy it too much in Week 14; with the league's worst schedule on the way, Marshall is a borderline starting option this week, along with any Lakers not named Pau Gasol.

Schedule: IND, CHA
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 30th
10-team starters: Pau Gasol
12-to-14-team starters: Kendall Marshall, Jodie Meeks, Nick Young
Deep-league fliers: Ryan Kelly, Wesley Johnson, Chris Kaman, Jordan Hill, Robert Sacre

Memphis Grizzlies

The Grizzlies eased Marc Gasol back into the rotation upon his return from a knee strain, a plan that lasted all of two games before they were once again making him the lynchpin of everything they do on both sides of the floor. After playing just 38 minutes in his first two games combined, Gasol has topped the 30-minute mark in each of his last two appearances, while putting up 25-plus Fantasy points in each game. You waited nearly two months, but you can finally put Marc Gasol back in your starting lineup for good beginning in Week 14.

Schedule: @POR, @SAC, @MIN, MIL
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 14th
10-team starters: Mike Conley, Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol
12-to-14-team starters: Courtney Lee
Deep-league fliers: Kosta Koufos, Ed Davis, Mike Miller

Miami Heat

If you are a Dwyane Wade owner, what can you do with him at this point? The Heat's maintenance plan makes sense for the team's long-term prospects, but it is creating one of the most frustrating situations in the league for Fantasy owners. When Wade plays, he is clearly a must-start option, averaging 32.7 Fantasy points per game. Unfortunately, he ranks just 35th overall in scoring for guards having missed 13 of the team's first 43 games. At this point, Fantasy owners can't even guess whether Wade will play based on the schedule, as he has gone through stretches playing both sides of a back-to-back, and others where he hasn't played regardless of schedule. With just two games on the schedule, Wade is eminently sittable for Week 14, leaving only Chris Bosh and LeBron James as sure-fire starters.

Schedule: OKC, @NY
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 17th
10-team starters: LeBron James, Chris Bosh
12-to-14-team starters: Dwyane Wade
Deep-league fliers: Norris Cole, Mario Chalmers, Ray Allen, Michael Beasley

Milwaukee Bucks

This disastrous season probably can't get worse for the Bucks, who remain the league's least competitive team, and one of the major headaches for Fantasy purposes. Coach Larry Drew has exhausted seemingly every possible lineup configuration to find the right answer, but that doesn't mean he is going to stop looking. The Bucks continue to use inconsistent lineups, mostly because nothing has worked. As long as that remains true, this is going to be a team with very little utility for Fantasy purposes. Despite a pretty strong schedule this week, I am still steering clear of this train wreck.

Schedule: LAC, PHO, @ORL, @MEM
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 18th
10-team starters: Brandon Knight
12-to-14-team starters: John Henson, Ersan Ilyasova, Larry Sanders
Deep-league fliers: Luke Ridnour, Giannis Antetokounmpo, O.J. Mayo, Khris Middleton, Nate Wolters

Minnesota Timberwolves

As frustrating as Ricky Rubio might be, he remains an elite contributor of that rarest and most sought after commodities, assists. I advocated sitting Rubio last week with the Timberwolves playing just three times, but I will go the other way for Week 14. You might not have drafted Rubio thinking you had to worry about matchups, but that is the reality of the situation, as he has failed to take the expected step forward. With four games on the schedule, including a few against below-average defenses, Rubio can be activated.

Schedule: @CHI, NO, MEM, @ATL
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 18th
10-team starters: Kevin Love, Nikola Pekovic
12-to-14-team starters: Kevin Martin, Ricky Rubio
Deep-league fliers: Corey Brewer, Jose Barea, Alexey Shved

New Orleans Pelicans

Injuries have just decimated this roster, leaving Anthony Davis as the lone must-start option on a team that was expected to have at least three or four. Brian Roberts has emerged as a useful Fantasy option in Jrue Holiday's absence, but he still isn't much more than a fringe player, averaging 23.6 Fantasy points per game over the last five. Roberts slots in right behind Eric Gordon and Tyreke Evans on the depth chart for Fantasy purposes, though none of the trio is more than a No. 4 guard in most formats for Week 14.

Schedule: @CLE, @MIN, CHI
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 4th
10-team starters: Anthony Davis, Eric Gordon, Tyreke Evans
12-to-14-team starters: None
Deep-league fliers: Brian Roberts, Austin Rivers, Anthony Morrow, Jason Smith, Al-Farouq Aminu

New York Knicks

With his elbow injury sidelining him indefinitely, we can at least stop begrudgingly penciling Andrea Bargnani into the lineup. Unfortunately, with Amar'e Stoudemire and Kenyon Martin sidelined by injuries of their own for now, there doesn't seem to be anyone who can step into that role for the Knicks. The most likely outcome for the Knicks sees Carmelo Anthony taking on an even larger share of the scoring load, though it is possible that the loss of Bargnani might spark one of the team's reserves. At this point, I wouldn't rely on anyone but Anthony on this team for Week 14, at least until we see how the pecking order shakes out.

Schedule: BOS, CLE, MIA
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 5th
10-team starters: Carmelo Anthony
12-to-14-team starters: Raymond Felton
Deep-league fliers: Tyson Chandler, Tim Hardaway Jr., Iman Shumpert, Beno Udrih

Oklahoma City Thunder

The only way anything is going to change for Oklahoma City right now is if injuries hit. Though Kevin Durant was forced to sit Friday against the Celtics with a shoulder injury, this does not sound like the type of injury that will sideline him for long. As long as they are healthy, the Thunder have three must-start options and almost nothing else beyond that.

Schedule: ATL, @MIA, @BKN, @WAS
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 13th
10-team starters: Kevin Durant, Serge Ibaka, Reggie Jackson
12-to-14-team starters: None
Deep-league fliers: Jeremy Lamb

Orlando Magic

Nikola Vucevic may be able to return during the team's upcoming road trip, which ends Wednesday in Toronto. That would be great news for Vucevic owners, but terrible news for anyone who has been enjoying this extended run for Glen Davis and Tobias Harris. Vucevic's return will either push Harris to the bench or to small forward, and either outcome would serve as a wet blanket for his breakout; Harris is averaging 16.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game since Vucevic last played, as compared to just 11.1 points and 6.6 rebounds in 14 prior. I would still start both Harris and Davis in Week 14 with Vucevic's status very much up in the air, but this might be the time to sell high on both.

Schedule: @DET, @TOR, MIL, @BOS
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 13th
10-team starters: Arron Afflalo, Glen Davis, Jameer Nelson, Tobias Harris
12-to-14-team starters: Victor Oladipo
Deep-league fliers: Nikola Vucevic

Philadelphia 76ers

Things remain mostly the same for this team, as the shooting guard position remains the only spot where you aren't definitely starting their starter. James Anderson and Tony Wroten are the only role players worth even considering, but neither has much value, even with a strong schedule on the way in Week 14.

Schedule: PHO, @BOS, ATL, @DET
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 29th
10-team starters: Evan Turner, Spencer Hawes, Michael Carter-Williams, Thaddeus Young
12-to-14-team starters: None
Deep-league fliers: Tony Wroten, James Anderson

Phoenix Suns

This team has settled own after a very unpredictable start, and three players have emerged as the best Fantasy options around. The Suns spent most of the early part of the season looking for the right combination of players, which caused plenty of headaches for Fantasy owners as a different player would go off seemingly every night. Since Eric Bledsoe's injury, things have become much more predictable, with a solid hierarchy developing behind clear-cut star Goran Dragic. Channing Frye and Gerald Green have emerged as the second and third options, and remain the best bets for Fantasy purposes among the role players. Both players should be considered solid starting Fantasy options for Week 14, though more so in category-based formats.

Schedule: @PHI, @MIL, @IND, CHA
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 13th
10-team starters: Goran Dragic, Eric Bledsoe
12-to-14-team starters: Miles Plumlee, Gerald Green
Deep-league fliers: Markieff Morris, Marcus Morris, Channing Frye, Leandro Barbosa, Ish Smith, P.J. Tucker

Portland Trail Blazers

Following last week's five-game schedule, the Trail Blazers are coming crashing down this week. They play just twice, both times against top five defenses in Week 14. LaMarcus Aldridge is playing so out of his mind recently, he might reach 100 Fantasy points even with just two games on the schedule, but only he and maybe Damian Lillard should be considered must-start options for the week.

Schedule: MEM, TOR
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 29th
10-team starters: Damian Lillard, LaMarcus Aldridge
12-to-14-team starters: Nicolas Batum, Wesley Matthews
Deep-league fliers: Robin Lopez, Mo Williams

Sacramento Kings

As discussed earlier, the injuries to Cousins and Gay should thrust Williams into a bigger role, though it is an open question as to whether he will be able to capably take advantage. Isaiah Thomas might just be the only player worth a sure-fire starting spot for Fantasy purposes this week, as Gay and Cousins' returns could come at any point during the week and knock the rotations back into order. Jason Thompson looks like an interesting possible option with four games on the schedule, but he is definitely a risky play in shallower leagues. The same goes for Marcus Thornton, who erupted for 42 points in the first game after Gay and Cousins' injuries, but who nonetheless carries considerable downside. Thornton needed his 10 previous games just to match his showing from Friday, so he is anything but a slam dunk. Thornton will return to his tertiary role as soon as either Gay or Cousins is healthy.

Schedule: @UTA, MEM, @DAL, @SA
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 18th
10-team starters: Isaiah Thomas
12-to-14-team starters: Derrick Williams, DeMarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay
Deep-league fliers: Marcus Thornton, Jason Thompson, Jimmer Fredette, Aaron Gray

San Antonio Spurs

Centers we like for Week 14
Player Own/Start
1. Jared Sullinger, Celtics 95/71
2. Glen Davis, Magic 88/67
3. Jonas Valanciunas, Raptors 88/52
4. Miles Plumlee, Suns 85/45
5. Channing Frye, Suns 76/54

I talked about Kawhi Leonard playing better last week, so of course he went down with an injury that will sideline him for at least three weeks. Figuring out who will step up in Leonard's absence is a tough task, since the Spurs have played just one game so far this season without Leonard. Marco Belinelli stepped into the starting lineup and poured in 17 points in that game, a 113-100 loss to the Thunder, and Belinelli is definitely one of the players I would expect to see more time without Leonard around. Manu Ginobili and Boris Diaw will also probably see their roles increase, but we still have to see how the rotation shakes out before knowing for sure how this will change things from a Fantasy perspective. For Week 14, it is probably safer to assume things will stay mostly the same.

Schedule: @HOU, CHI, SAC
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 17th
10-team starters: Tony Parker, Tim Duncan
12-to-14-team starters: Manu Ginobili, Marco Belinelli
Deep-league fliers: Patty Mills, Boris Diaw

Toronto Raptors

Another injury this weekend could have massive ramifications, as DeMar DeRozan went down with a foot injury Saturday. His absence paved the way for Terrence Ross' unbelievable 51-point performance against the Clippers. With his combination of dead-eye long-range shooting and athleticism, Ross' prodigious scoring talents are no secret; even before Saturday's game, he had upped his scoring to 11.5 points per game since the Rudy Gay trade. Unfortunately, Ross is a lot like DeRozan was a few years ago, as his secondary skills completely limit his Fantasy appeal if he isn't scoring in bunches. If DeRozan's injury keeps him out long term, Ross could be a No. 3 or 4 guard in Week 14, but his value is entirely context-dependent.

Schedule: @BKN, ORL, @DEN, @POR
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 2nd
10-team starters: DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry
12-to-14-team starters: Greivis Vasquez, Terrence Ross
Deep-league fliers: Jonas Valanciunas, Amir Johnson, Patrick Patterson, John Salmons

Utah Jazz

Alec Burks has been putting up some of the best production of his career recently, though much of it came with the caveat of him having to take on a much bigger role with Gordon Hayward out. Burks has averaged 18.7 points per game over the last six, and five of those games came without Hayward around, leading to the obvious question of whether he can keep it up when the team is at full strength. He put those fears to rest somewhat Tuesday of last week by pouring in 18 points off the bench in Hayward's return. Burks is averaging 24.1 Fantasy points per game, and can be considered a solid option for Week 14 with a nice schedule on the way.

Schedule: SAC, GS, @LAC
Strength-of-schedule ranking:12th
10-team starters: Trey Burke, Gordon Hayward
12-to-14-team starters: Derrick Favors, Alec Burks
Deep-league fliers: Enes Kanter, Richard Jefferson, Marvin Williams

Washington Wizards

John Wall's teammates are starting to give him a little more help, which should please any Fantasy owners who have Bradley Beal or Nene. Over the last five games, Nene is averaging 28.2 Fantasy points per game, while Beal is chipping in 26.2 himself. The key for both has been an increase in assists, and the question becomes whether they can keep that up for the long run. For now, Fantasy owners can feel comfortable getting those two into the starting lineup for Week 14, with a solid series of matchups on the way.

Schedule: @GS, @LAC, OKC
Strength-of-schedule ranking: 25th
10-team starters: John Wall
12-to-14-team starters: Bradley Beal, Trevor Ariza, Nene, Marcin Gortat
Deep-league fliers: Martell Webster, Trevor Booker

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Player News
Mavericks waive forward Eric Griffin, guard Yuki Togashi
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:18 pm ET) The Mavericks announced Tuesday they waived forward Eric Griffin and guard Yuki Togashi. The Mavericks roster now has 18 players.

Wizards sign guard John Lucas
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:16 pm ET) The Wizards announced Tuesday they signed guard John Lucas. The veteran guard has played six seasons in the NBA, averaging 4.8 points and 1.4 assists in 216 games.

Celtics guard James Young feeling good after returning to practice
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(12:01 pm ET) Celtics guard James Young, who has been sidelined two weeks due to a hamstring strain, said Tuesday he is feeling no soreness after returning to practice Monday. The rookie guard was the No. 17 overall pick in the 2014 NBA draft.

Magic guard Victor Oladipo looking iffy for season opener
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11:07 am ET) It appears doubtful Magic guard Victor Oladipo, who is recovering from a sprained MCL, will be ready in time for the season opener Oct. 28 against the Pelicans, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Oladipo did attempt a few jumpers and made a few dunks at the outset of practice Monday.

"It feels a lot better," Oladipo said. "It's a day-by-day process. A sprained MCL is kind of like a scab. You've just got to let it heal. That's pretty much what I'm doing."


Amar'e Stoudemire enthusiastic as new season approaches
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:56 am ET) Only time will tell how many games Knicks veteran forward Amar'e Stoudemire will play and how much he will be able to contribute in 2014-15. However, Stoudemire said he feels healthy entering the season and clearly he isn't short on enthusiasm.

"My joy is there. My love of the game is there," the 32-year-old Stoudemire said, per the New York Post. "I feel like I’m 19 again as far as how much I love to play the game of basketball. I feel youthful. To have that type of feeling again as I had my rookie year, to want to play and just want to be out there and get better as a player is pretty encouraging."

Stoudemire received his first start of the preseason Monday against the Bucks. He had 14 points and six rebounds in close to 24 minutes.

"I thought Amar’e was active, he did some good things. He was a good presence four us," said coach Derek Fisher, who had claimed Stoudemire at center was "something we’ve been thinking about" because of "his versatility at that position."


Thunder star Kevin Durant 'not going to rush' back from injury
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:46 am ET) Thunder forward Kevin Durant told reporters Tuesday he has "been antsy" since undergoing foot surgery last week. However, Durant cautioned that he has no intentions of returning sooner than the 6-8-week timeframe he was given.

"Nah, I'm not going to rush it all. That's one thing I'm not going to do," Durant said, per ESPN.

Durant is the NBA's reigning MVP after averaging a career-best 32.0 points per game in 2013-14. He also averaged a career-best 5.5 assists and 7.4 rebounds per game last season.


Thunder's Anthony Morrow adjusting to small-forward role
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:34 am ET) Anthony Morrow signed with the Thunder in the offseason expecting to come off the bench as a backup shooting guard. However, he has been coach Scott Brooks' choice recently to fill the starting small-forward role with star Kevin Durant sidelined due to a foot injury.

"That’s something I’ve had to do in the past, gotten used to it," Morrow said of sliding over to the small forward, per The Oklahoman. "Guarding guys like Stephen Jackson and Corey Maggette (at Golden State), I learned a lot from them early on. So a lot of times I’d be playing small forward my first couple years in the league."

Morrow said he has no preference as to starting or coming off the bench.

"Your physical preparation is the same," Morrow said. "But mentally, I’m the type of guy who wants to get off to a good start. So knowing if I don’t get off to a good start, I got the rest of the game to pick it up (helps). That’s something I had to (adjust to) over the years as I’ve started to come off the bench more."


Thunder have 'very realistic' expectations for Andre Roberson
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:25 am ET) Thunder guard Andre Roberson is tasked with the responsibility of replacing Thabo Sefolosha in the starting lineup in 2014-15 after Sefolosha left for Atlanta in free agency. While Roberson is viewed to have similar defensive skills to Sefolosha, his offensive game is still a work in progress.

"Him and I have had many conversations on what I need from him on the offensive end. And they’re very realistic," Thunder coach Scott Brooks said, per The Oklahoman. "I’m not throwing him out there to say, ‘On any given night I need you to hit 10 3s.’ That’s not the case. He just has to continue to compete on both ends of the floor and get better as the year goes on."

Roberson has appeared in all six preseason games, averaging 6.0 points on 48.3 percent shooting. He is averaging 27.5 minutes per game. Though, he has been hesitant to shoot from long range, as he has attempted only four 3-pointers.

"I got to stop hesitating and shoot it," Roberson admitted.


Stomach virus still has Nets veteran Kevin Garnett sidelined
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:06 am ET) Nets forward Kevin Garnett was sidelined again during Monday's preseason game against the 76ers due to a stomach virus. The illness is also expected to keep Garnett out of Wednesday's preseason finale against the Celtics, per the New York Post.

"I don’t want to get into his personal bathroom habits," coach Lionel Hollins said with a smile, "But he’s been sick … sick enough to the point where he’s not playing."

The Celtics open the season Oct. 29 against Boston. Garnett should have enough time to recover before the season opener.


Anthony Davis sprains right wrist
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10/20/2014) Pelicans power forward Anthony Davis sprained his right wrist during Monday's game against the Wizards, reports the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

 
 
 
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