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RotoBaller NBA Recap: 50-Point Day for LMA

kyle kuzma nba dfs daily fantasy basketball 3

Welcome to the RotoBaller NBA Recap. In this feature, we highlight three fantasy basketball takeaways from last night's slate of NBA games.

Any game that wasn't Thunder/Spurs is difficult to reminisce on. That was an amazing basketball game that might have even deserved triple overtime. There were elite performances by both teams' stars and some exceptional performances from role players like Derrick White and Jerami Grant. Just a spectacular game in which 301 points were scored. Every other game was a 20-point blowout and doesn't have much worth mentioning, but I will hit a few points.

  • Boston was extremely overrated coming into this season. They have three wins versus teams above .500 since November 3rd. Gordon Hayward is going to need at least a full season or two to get comfortable and get his feel for the game back.
  • Miami is as average as could be and needs a rebuild. They are glutted with terrible contracts and don't have a true star to lead them into the future. It will be bleak if they don't position themselves properly in the draft this year or next.
  • The Kings are going to be scary if they can find a legit small forward. They don't even need a big name, just a top-notch 3-and-D like Robert Covington to stop their opponents' best wings.

Anyway, let's take it away in the Thursday, January 10th recap with our fantasy highlights.

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LaMarcus Aldridge: 50-Point Day for LMA

LaMarcus Aldridge has turned his season around these past two months. He was shooting below 45 percent from the field in October and November which made owners think he was finally over the hill. The 33-year old was bound to break at some point! Right? Wrong.

Aldridge is looking better than ever and just had a career-high night to prove it. The veteran power forward dropped 56 on 20-for-33 shooting against one of the best defenses in the league. On top of this, he added nine rebounds, four assists and four blocks. To be fair to the Thunder, they were without Nerlens Noel who is arguably the best defender in the league. he holds it down for those minutes that Steven Adams is off the floor. Nevertheless, Aldridge's night should not be undermined. This was one of those blackout-type performances from athletes where you just watch and wonder how in the world they pulled it off. Aldridge got to the line for 16 free throws and drained every single one. It's safe to say that this was probably his peak but with the Spurs and their voodoo magic, you never know. Hopefully, fantasy owners didn't sell low (or bought low) and are reaping the benefits of this recent surge.


Marcus Smart: Sharpshootin' Smart??

Marcus Smart might finally have learned how to shoot. It took five years but hey, better late than never. Smart's field goal percentage and three-point percentage are currently higher than ever and it is very respectable. While his FG% remains just below 40, it should be noted that over have of his shots are coming from deep. The only sacrifice he's had to make is volume. Smart is wisely taking fewer shots, which in result have allowed him to take better shots. Smart is taking advantage of open looks and not forcing the ball when he's covered.

The best guess here would be that this shooting surge is a result of Kyrie Irving's ability to draw attention to himself on the court. Irving and Smart are typically on the floor together. Smart is occasionally left open on the perimeter to take advantage of defenses collapsing on the uber-talented point guard. Smart has made four or more threes in three of the past four games and it is a trend to keep an eye on. Smart typically isn't going to score in the double-digits, but as long as he can stay close, his ownership should balloon. His steals are a necessity and with his new-found shooting prowess, some might say that he's a must-own down the stretch.


Terrance Ferguson: Drainin' from Deep

Terrance Ferguson has been on fire these past two games. While point totals of 14 and 21 aren't eye-popping, they are impressive when considering that he's gone 11-for-14 from deep in that span. Gotta love a player who knows where their bread is buttered. On the season, roughly 60 percent of Ferguson's field goals have come from beyond the arc. He is not exactly a fantasy option yet, but if his minutes stick and he keeps getting shots, it is possible down the line. For now, he does not provide enough production outside of his threes to be worth picking up.

Ferguson is a former first-round draft pick who spent a year abroad instead of in college. It is fair to assume that his year away from the USA might have done a bit more harm than good for his game/development, but he's here now and starting on a top-3 team in the West. Fantasy viability will not be on the table for probably another two-to-three years and it all depends on how much more usage he gets. His body and tools are still raw but there have been noticeable improvements from year one to year two.  This is the type of player to keep an eye on in dynasty leagues that could be bought for cheap. Flashes like today remind us that these young guys need time and if developed properly, could pay dividends in the future. Ferguson's three-point percentage has increased in every month thus far this season.


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