- Seth Landman, Fantasy Basketball
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Matchups for Wednesday, Feb. 4
All times are ET.
Key: Opp. PPG = Points per game allowed to opponents. Opp. FGP = Field goal percentage allowed to opponents. RPG Diff. = The difference between team's rebounds per game and its opponents' rebounds per game.
Steve Blake, PG, Trail Blazers (shoulder)
Vince Carter, SG, Nets (ankle)
Daequan Cook, PG/SG, Heat (thigh)
Monta Ellis, PG/SG, Warriors (ankle)
Al Horford, PF/C, Hawks (knee)
Shawn Marion, SF/PF, Heat (groin)
Tracy McGrady, SG/SF, Rockets (ankle)
Jameer Nelson, PG, Magic (shoulder)
Chris Paul, PG, Hornets (groin)
Zach Randolph, PF, Clippers (knee)
Derrick Rose, PG, Bulls (foot)
Rodney Stuckey, PG/SG, Pistons (thigh)
Start 'em, sit 'em
With Andrew Bynum out at least eight to 12 weeks, you really need to get Lamar Odom into your lineup every night. He had a bad shooting night Monday against the Knicks, but played a season-high 38 minutes and finished with 14 rebounds, four assists and three blocks. The scoring will be there against the Raptors on Wednesday; Kobe isn't going to score 61 every night. I think. If Vince Carter continues to be hobbled for the Nets, expect more of what we saw Saturday from Brook Lopez. In a low-scoring game against the Sixers, Lopez managed to get up a career-high 20 shots and made 10 of them on his way to 24 points and 17 rebounds. He won't score like that every night, but he might against the Wizards. The Suns' Jason Richardson was on fire against the Kings on Monday, scoring 24 points in 25 minutes. He had been slumping, and it was against what might be the league's worst defense, but if it's the start of a hot streak, you'll want him in your lineup every night. Even if it's not the start of a hot streak, there's a decent chance he'll torch the Warriors.
If Jameer Nelson misses any length of time with his dislocated shoulder, the one guy who might get pushed into fantasy relevance is Courtney Lee. He has been playing more than 30 minutes per game over the past couple of weeks already, but Nelson's shots are going to go somewhere, and with Hedo Turkoglu probably taking on more of a playmaker role, Lee's usage rate could see an uptick. Either way, he's probably a good pickup for 3-pointers and steals against the Clippers. I like Sebastian Telfair against the Hawks: Randy Foye should draw Joe Johnson's attention, while Telfair should have no trouble getting around Mike Bibby. Bassy is averaging 5.6 assists over his past five games, and should exceed that this time around. Kyle Weaver got the start for the Thunder in Desmond Mason's absence against the Kings on Sunday. I like his potential on that team; he's very clearly a defense guy and exactly the sort of player the Thunder currently lack. He has yet to do anything with the role, but Wednesday's game against the Nuggets should be fast-paced, so there's the potential for some steals at the very least. Anderson Varejao has been slumping of late, but in two games against the Knicks this season, he has averaged 10 points and eight rebounds in just 20.5 minutes. He'll get more than that this time, so expect a double-double with a block or two thrown in. Joel Anthony is on a pretty good run of blocking shots for the Heat, averaging 2.2 blocks in just 17.4 minutes over his past five games. After playing well in 31 minutes against the Clippers, if he can get more than 20 minutes against the Pistons, he should be worth at least a few blocks, which are always valuable in fantasy.
Seth Landman is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com.
Seth Landman previews Wednesday's NBA games from a fantasy perspective.