Daily Notes for Thursday: Mavs-Spurs look
|Time||Visitors||Opp. PPG||Opp. FGP||RPG Diff.||Home||Opp. PPG||Opp. FGP||RPG Diff.|
|8 p.m.||San Antonio Spurs||88.8||.436||-.6|
|10:30 p.m.||Chicago Bulls||96.2||.433||-2.8|
All times are expressed in Eastern Time.
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.
The Spurs and Mavericks are great on the defensive end, and both teams defend the perimeter particularly well. Basically, you should be playing Tim Duncan, Manu Ginobili, and Tony Parker for the Spurs, and that's it. For Dallas, it's a bit trickier. Dirk Nowitzki and Josh Howard are automatic starts, and so is Jason Terry while he's on fire (shooting 54 percent on 3-pointers). Someone else is going to score some points for the Mavericks, and it might be Jerry Stackhouse, but I think he'll have a rough night from the floor. I'd sit him. If you are desperately in need of steals, you'll have to start Devin Harris, and if you are trying to rack up some blocks, you need to start DeSagana Diop, but I really wouldn't expect either to have a good all-around game. Luol Deng has been pretty awful for Chicago to start the season, but he's made to matchup against a team like the Suns. Phoenix will let him get to the hoop, and I'd expect him to rebound well against them. I would be sitting Raja Bell for Phoenix, because Chicago tends to defend the perimeter extremely well, and Bell is nursing an ankle injury as it is and didn't play Tuesday night.
Brandon Bass has been playing a lot of minutes at power forward for Dallas so far, and he's been making the most of them. He's averaging 10 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks. He doesn't turn it over much, he's shooting 50 percent from the floor, and best of all, he's 18-for-18 from the charity stripe. He had some great games in the preseason as well, so this is not coming out of nowhere. Right now his numbers are solid, and usable in fantasy; if he gets a little more playing time (if Dallas decides to go small a little more and uses Dirk at center occasionally), then you'll be extremely glad you picked him up now. Joe Smith has been playing pretty well for the Bulls while Ben Wallace has been completely ineffective up front. I don't see Smith as a good long-term pickup, but he could grab a whole lot of rebounds against Phoenix. In a head-to-head league, he could be a good play depending on what you need, and nobody owns him at the moment.
Seth Landman is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com
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