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Fantasy Basketball Rotation Watch: Playing Time Updates for Week 9

Welcome to Rotation Watch, Rotoballers! Each week, this article will highlight the players that are gaining minutes in their team's rotation. Fantasy managers want to roster the players that are accumulating stats and racking up the playing time. They want to avoid the players falling out of favor and watching the action from the sidelines.

COVID-19 has turned its ugly head once again and significantly affecting the NBA schedule. With only two postponements from Jan. 28 to Feb. 15, the league seemed to have turned a corner. Unfortunately, a couple of positive tests popped up around the league in the last 48 hours and have forced, as of this writing, six games to be postponed over the next week. The postponements will take many intriguing fantasy options off the radar for Week 9, but that means we'll dig deeper and find those exceptionally well-hidden gems on your waiver wire that will get more minutes.

So without further ado, let's start searching those box scores from Feb. 8 to Feb. 14 and look for those hidden gems that grabbed the minutes to help your fantasy basketball team achieve the ultimate prize: a championship. These suggestions are the cream of the crop, and if you ever need an extra slice of advice, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @EuanOrYouOut, and I'll happily talk about some fantasy basketball with everyone.

Editor's Note: Our incredible team of writers received five total writing awards and 13 award nominations by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association, tops in the industry! Congrats to all the award winners and nominees including NBA Writer of the Year, Best NFL Series, MLB Series, PGA Writer and Player Notes writer of the year. Be sure to follow their analysis, rankings and advice all year long, and win big with RotoBaller! Read More!


NBA Playing Time  Changes

Reggie Jackson - PG/SG, Los Angeles Clippers

Season: 20.4 Minutes per Game

Week 8: 27.5 Minutes per Game

Jackson is a tricky case to navigate. Although he did play more minutes than his season average, I feel that Pat Beverly's return will affect his fantasy production more than any member of the Clippers. He also picked up a shoulder knock earlier this week and may take a couple of games off himself. Despite playing 27.5 minutes per game last week, the 10th-year guard only averaged 11.3 points, and 0.7 made threes. Week 8 was a snapshot of Jackson's season that's seen him averaged 8.3 points per game, his lowest scoring output since his second year in the league.

Although the Clippers are dealing with injuries throughout the roster, it's players like Marcus Morris (see below) that benefitted in Week 8. While Jackson is a name fantasy basketball managers remember, there are better options on their waiver wire, probably producing more fantasy-useful numbers than Jackson at the moment.


Grayson Allen - SG/SF, Memphis Grizzlies

Season: 23.3 Minutes per Game 

Week 8: 29.1 Minutes per Game

I don't like to be a cynical guy, but starting off the article with two pretenders this week needs to happen. Grayson Allen was awesome for fantasy basketball last week while the Memphis Grizzlies dealt with some injuries. The third-year guard played three games and saw his averages settle at 17.7 points, three rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.3 steals, and 4.7 threes for Week 8. Numbers like that are beneficial in deeper leagues, and it's surprising to see him only 15 percent rostered after his big week.

However, all of these rotation players for the Grizzlies are returning soon or already have returned to the lineup. The minutes squeeze is coming for Grayson Allen. Despite his big Week 8 output, the 25-year old is better left on your waiver wire until another rash of injuries and absences plagues this Memphis team.


Justin Jackson - SF/PF, Oklahoma City Thunder

Season: 18.6 Minutes per Game

Week 8: 29.0 Minutes per Game

After averaging less than 20 minutes per game this season, Jackson exploded in Week 8 as the Thunder dealt with several injuries. It opened up a vast amount of playing time for the 25-year old, and he took full advantage of his chance. In four games, the forward averaged 16.3 points, 3.5 assists, 2.8 rebounds, 2.5 threes, and one steal. He set back-to-back season-highs, scoring 20 points against the Nuggets, and followed it up with a lovely 22 points against the Bucks on Valentine's Day.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (knee), George Hill (thumb), and Ty Jerome (ankle) are dealing with ailments for OKC, and it's allowing Jackson to find his rhythm in the offense. In Week 8, he attempted at least nine shots in every game and shot 56.5 percent from the field. Hamidou Diallo and Lou Dort have been the popular breakout candidates for the Thunder. Still, Jackson will continue to have his chance to continue his fantasy contributions while SGA moves in and out of the lineup with his injury.


Kyle Kuzma - SF/PF, Los Angeles Lakers

Season: 24.9 Minutes per Game

Week 8: 30.2 Minutes per Game

All it takes is an injury for a player to return to fantasy relevancy, and it's happening for Kyle Kuzma. Anthony Davis (calf) will take some time to recover from his injury and is out at least a couple of weeks. Despite playing a career-low 24.9 minutes per game this season, Kuzma will have an opportunity to make up for lost time and stuff the fantasy box score while his All-Star teammate recovers on the sidelines.

In Week 8, the 2017 first-round pick saw his playing time spike to 30.2 minutes per game, and he rewarded Frank Vogel's faith in him with productive outings. Over his four games last week, the 25-year old averaged 16.3 points, nine rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 1.3 triples while shooting 50 percent on 14 shots per game. Those numbers will play exceptionally well in any league, and fantasy managers should run to the waiver wire before it's too late. As of Tuesday night, Kuzma was still available in 38 percent of Yahoo leagues.


Marcus Morris - PF/C, Los Angeles Clippers

Season: 24.6 Minutes per Game 

Week 8: 25.3 Minutes per Game

My eyebrows rose this offseason when I saw the Clippers give Morris a four-year, $64 million contract. However, this is exactly why I don't run an NBA team because the Clippers are in desperate need of scoring options right now, and Morris is giving them exactly that. Kawhi Leonard (leg), Paul George (foot), and Nicholas Batum (concussion), all missed games over the weekend, and it unlocked Morris' offense.

In his three games over the President's Day weekend, Morris had three-games games with at least 20 points for the first time since joining the team at the trade deadline last season. Overall, the 31-year old averaged 25 points, five rebounds, one block, and a whopping 7.3 made three-pointers over the three contests. Leonard will return any day now, but George is still without a timeline for his return. Morris can be that secondary scoring the Clippers need in their lineup if they want to compete for one of the top seeds in the West, and it will help fantasy managers compete for a title as the season moves past the one-third mark.

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