Matchups for Thursday, March 13
All times ET.
Key: Opp. PPG = Points per game allowed to opponents. Opp. FGP = Field goal percentage allowed to opponents. RPG Diff. = The difference between a team's rebounds per game and its opponents' rebounds per game.
Zydrunas Ilgauskas, C, Cavaliers (back)
Start 'Em, Sit 'Em
While it's still too early to start bailing on Brad Miller, he must be benched in the short term, at least until it's known whether Miller's struggles have been his own fault (eight fouls in his past two games, in addition to injuries) or whether the Kings are committed to giving Spencer Hawes serious playing time.
Anderson Varejao is a fantasy analyst's best friend, as the facts (he is owned in less than 30 percent of ESPN leagues) show he is not an obvious, easy player to recommend. But as long as Varejao keeps his fouls (just 2.8 per game in five March matchups) low, his minutes (34 per game) will stay high. Ilgauskas is out indefinitely, so get used to Varejao's double-double potential. You always can squeeze value out of a point guard who provides 3s and assists, and while Steve Blake doesn't offer much else, he has been decent since the All-Star break and has improved in March (12.3 points, 6.3 assists, 1.7 3s). With a favorable matchup against the Kings (eighth in possessions per game, 26th in defensive efficiency), Blake is worth a start. Mickael Pietrus started both of the past two games, seeing decent minutes (32 and 33 minutes), with a mixed bag of production. His recent fouls are worrisome -- 17 fouls in his past four game is ridiculous -- but the Warriors are facing the Suns. When a game is going to have 40-plus extra points scored due simply to the pace, one should be more inclined to gamble on the participating players.
Adam Madison is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com