Matchups for Wednesday, March 11
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 a team's rebounds per game and its opponents' rebounds per game.
Luol Deng, SF, Bulls (leg)
Kevin Durant, SG/SF, Thunder (ankle)
Kevin Garnett, PF, Celtics (knee)
Allen Iverson, PG/SG, Pistons (back)
Rajon Rondo, PG, Celtics (ankle)
Marvin Williams, SF/PF, Hawks (back)
Andris Biedrins, PF/C, Warriors (personal)
Carlos Boozer, PF, Jazz (ankle)
Rudy Fernandez, SG, Trail Blazers (neck/elbow/hip)
Randy Foye, PG/SG, Timberwolves (ankle)
Jeff Green, SF/PF, Thunder (back)
Josh Howard, SF, Mavericks (ankle)
Peja Stojakovic, SF, Hornets (back)
Rasheed Wallace, PF/C, Pistons (calf)
Start 'em, sit 'em
Josh Smith has had two double-doubles in a row, and with Marvin Williams out, the Hawks need Smith to produce more than ever. He's showing signs of snapping out of a slump that has seen him average just 5.3 rebounds per game through February and half of March. If you have him on your bench, it's time to get him back in your lineup, as he'll be playing 40 minutes a night for the foreseeable future. You have to like the Nets' matchup against the Warriors for Brook Lopez, who should be able to put together a monster evening, especially if Andris Biedrins doesn't play. Lopez has had a few off games of late, which is to be expected of a rookie, but he's good for steals and blocks even when he's not scoring and rebounding well. The Grizzlies' O.J. Mayo and the Timberwolves' Kevin Love square off against each other and the teams that originally drafted them, and both players should see significant minutes. They have followed opposite paths this season; Mayo started out on fire while Love was riding the pine, and then Love caught fire while Mayo cooled off significantly. They both have leveled off recently, though, and neither is in the rookie of the year talk much at this point. That said, I'd start both Wednesday. Neither team is good, and these two might be the best players on the floor in many ways. Love should be good for double-digit rebounds, and Mayo should have a good scoring night, especially with Randy Foye banged up.
Ronald "Flip" Murray is going to get increased minutes with Marvin Williams sidelined for the Hawks, and he's a good bet to hit double digits in points with a couple of 3-pointers and a couple of assists thrown in. He certainly is not a fantasy star by any stretch, but he could be useful over the coming weeks. Leon Powe is about to get thrown into the fire in a big way with Glen Davis and Kevin Garnett both banged up for the Celtics. The matchup against the Heat isn't quite as much of a pushover on the blocks with Jermaine O'Neal patrolling the paint, but Powe should be good for points and boards Wednesday. With Rajon Rondo also out for the Celtics, it will be interesting to see whether Stephon Marbury or Eddie House gets the majority of the minutes at point guard. My gut says Marbury will, as the Heat have plenty of guards to pressure the ball with Mario Chalmers and Dwyane Wade, and Marbury is the better ball handler by a mile. Nobody owns the Pistons' Antonio McDyess, but the man is averaging a double-double over his past five games and throwing in better than a block per game over that stretch as well. He has a great matchup against the Knicks on Wednesday; I'd pick him up, especially if you are lacking in boards.
Seth Landman is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com.