Fantasy Basketball Daily Ratings for Thursday

Identifying and mounting a hot hand is one of the joys of fantasy basketball. The Oklahoma City Thunder’s Luguentz Dort, for example, scored a team-high 30 points in an upset driving Luka Doncic’s Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night. With leading scorer Shai Gilgeous-Alexander sidelined for a few weeks with injury, Dort has now averaged 25 points over his last three games, with the Thunder winning two of those games.

Doncic posted his eighth career game with 40 points and 10 assists, breaking a tie with Oscar Robertson and Trae Young for the most by any player before turning 23. However, it was Dort who tallied 14 of his 30 points in the decisive overtime period, tying Russell Westbrook’s franchise record for most points in a single overtime.

The Thunder won despite entering the game as a 12-point underdog, marking the team’s biggest upset victory since being 13 points against the Spurs in Kevin Durant’s 2009 rookie season. Joining Dort in defeating Dallas was rookie Tre Mann, who scored a career-high 29 points, while Josh Giddey notched a rookie-best 12th double-double.


Wednesday recap

Strong points

LaMelo Ball, Charlotte Hornet: 38 points (12-24 FG), 6 rebounds, 9 assists, 2 steals

Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks: 40 points (16-33 FG), 6 rebounds, 10 assists, 3 steals

Lowlights

Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets: 14 points (5-15 FG), 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 4 TO

Wednesday takeaways

  • The Nets coughed up a late lead against the Kings en route to the team’s sixth straight loss. Irving and James Harden both struggled from the floor, with Harden producing just four points on 11 shots, scoring his fewest points in a game while playing at least 30 minutes. With Harden’s fantasy stock dropping, it would be a good idea to make him an offer, given the likelihood of him returning to elite production in the coming weeks.

  • One bright spot for Brooklyn was center Nic Claxton with a career-high 23 points. With LaMarcus Aldridge struggling with injury, Claxton could become a regular contributor for a depleted Nets frontcourt.

  • Washington’s Spencer Dinwiddie helped orchestrate the 76ers’ upset last night. Dinwiddie scored his first career triple-double and is a fine target for player props and DFS contributions as long as Bradley Beal is sidelined with a wrist injury.

  • The Knicks couldn’t beat Ja Morant and the deep Memphis Grizzlies, but it was nice to see New York’s Mitchell Robinson deliver an impressive defensive performance with eight blocks. That total ties Robinson for the most blocks by any player this season and marks the second most games of his career.

  • Ball set a new career high and became only the Hornets’ fifth player in career games with 35 points, five rebounds and five assists. Kelly Oubre Jr., despite struggling with his shot, has recorded seven combined blocks and is stealing off the bench for the Hornets.

Injuries to Note

  • The Pistons are classifying Cade Cunningham as questionable to play in tonight’s game against the Timberwolves due to hip disease.

  • The Heat are listing Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry as questionable for tonight’s game against the Spurs in San Antonio.

Analytical advantage

The Chicago Bulls won’t have Alex Caruso or Lonzo Ball in the rotation tonight. That signals a big distribution role for rising rookie Ayo Dosunmu, as the Illinois product has averaged a team-leading 56.5 assists over the past 10 games. For the Bulls, Dosunmu only trails All-Star teammate DeMar DeRozan in the potential assists created in this streak, proof that he has become an integral part of the Chicago offense. Not only is Dosunmu still widely available in ESPN Fantasy Leagues, but the rookie’s assist on DraftKings sits at 4.5 Thursday morning, a number he’s surpassed in seven of his last 10 games.

DFS Talk

  • Drew Eubanks, San Antonio Spurs: With Jakob Poeltl sidelined, the team will miss his elite size and rim protection. Eubanks is a bit risky given the lack of track record, but the combination of low and rising price is interesting.

  • Cory Joseph, Detroit Pistons: Both Joseph and Isaiah Stewart stand out as values ​​on this Pistons roster. If Cunningham sits tonight, expect Joseph to orchestrate the offense often.

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