Matchups for Sunday, March 1
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.
Monta Ellis, PG/SG, Warriors (ankle)
Manu Ginobili, SG, Spurs (ankle)
Nene Hilario, PF/C, Nuggets (knee)
Greg Oden, C, Trail Blazers (knee)
Jason Terry, PG/SG, Mavericks (hand)
Ben Wallace, C, Cavaliers (leg)
Tim Duncan, PF/C, Spurs (quadriceps)
Joey Graham, SG/SF, Raptors (hamstring)
Allen Iverson, PG/SG, Pistons (back)
Steve Nash, PG, Suns (ankle)
Morris Peterson, SG/SF, Hornets (foot)
Delonte West, PG/SG, Cavaliers (wrist)
Start 'em, sit 'em
Andris Biedrins and Corey Maggette both were back in the Warriors' lineup Friday, but Jamal Crawford was a healthy scratch so Don Nelson could get C.J. Watson extended run. It's a strange move that shouldn't affect Crawford's value much for the season, and I wouldn't be surprised if he responded with a huge "oh no you didn't" game against the Jazz. Allen Iverson is listed as day-to-day, but he isn't expected to play; you should feel confident benching him for a better option. Richard Hamilton will start at shooting guard and should have another night like Friday (31 points, six assists, three steals), as he tries to prove he should be back in the starting lineup for good. Ben Wallace is expected to miss four to six weeks with a broken leg. Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Anderson Varejao should each see a bump in minutes, and rookie J.J. Hickson should see a little more run off the bench. John Salmons scored a team-high 25 points on 8-for-13 shooting from the floor and 7-for-8 from the stripe Friday night for the Bulls. He's trying to reclaim some of the value he had as a primary option for the Kings, although the Bulls have too many guards for him to match his statistical success from earlier this season. Nonetheless, Friday night's game showed he still has some value. A move from center to power forward wasn't good for Kevin Love's value Friday night, as he scored just two points with three rebounds in 28 minutes. The Rockets are a solid rebounding team, and if the plan is to continue starting Jason Collins at the 5, Love's value could diminish: This experiment resulted in his lowest rebounding total since December. As I mentioned in Grand Theft Roto, Al Horford is starting to come alive, and people are paying notice after his 21-point, 22-rebound effort Friday night. Start him with confidence, even against the defensively staunch Cavaliers, and know that his buy-low window is rapidly closing.
Morris Peterson could play Sunday for the first time since January 28, and even though he's not worth a second look in most leagues, his return will create some ripples in deep formats because of his ability to hit 3s. Brandon Rush has scored in double figures in four of his past five contests, including 17 points with three 3s Friday night. He has increased value with Danny Granger sidelined, so if you need a two-week sub in deeper formats, Rush is worth a look. With Amare Stoudemire sidelined, Grant Hill is starting at power forward and should also be starting for fantasy teams. He had 14 points, 12 assists, four rebounds, two steals and two blocks Friday night, and is suddenly an all-around threat who is getting big minutes and has fantastic percentages. Those are good adjectives to use to describe a player, and Hill should be owned in all formats. Delonte West was back in the Cavs' lineup again Friday night, scoring 17 points with seven rebounds and five assists, proving once again that he's start-worthy anytime he's healthy and getting minutes. Mo Williams, on the other hand, scored just nine points with one assist in that game, and sees his value diminish when West is in the lineup. Chris Andersen did his best to earn the most unexpected triple-double of the year Friday, scoring 11 points with 12 boards and seven blocks. He played 28 minutes despite accruing five fouls, an indication that he's going to get heavy minutes from this point forward. If he regularly played 25 minutes per game Andersen would hover around three blocks per game.
Josh Whitling is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com.