We have a slightly more appealing schedule in Week 11 than we did in Week 10, even as COVID-related absences continue to wield a heavy hand across the league. The postponement of games seems to have abated for the time being, and we're back to having a healthy number of teams with four-game weeks.
While we also have a trio of teams with only two games on their schedules -- a higher number than usual – there's still a strong player pool of streaming candidates to choose from, especially with several clubs still playing considerably short-handed.
TEAMS WITH FOUR GAMES: Boston Celtics, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Minnesota Timberwolves, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz
TEAMS WITH THREE GAMES: Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Hornets, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, Milwaukee Bucks, Orlando Magic, Portland Trail Blazers, Toronto Raptors, Washington Wizards
Without further ado, let's examine some of the tougher start/sit decisions for Week 11:
Start: Malik Beasley, Timberwolves
44% start rate in CBS leagues
The Timberwolves have Karl-Anthony Towns, D'Angelo Russell and Anthony Edwards in health and safety protocols to start the week, and that could well be the case throughout Minnesota's four-game ledger. Such a development would be a boon for Beasley's production, considering he boasts a 30.1 percent usage rate without his trio of star teammates on the floor. Beasley already enters the new week with averages of 21.3 points, 3.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.0 steals across 35 minutes per contest during a current four-game starting stint, a glimpse at what he can offer your lineup in his role as a major source of offense for the Timberwolves for the time being.
Start: Eric Bledsoe, Clippers
43% start rate in CBS leagues
Bledsoe isn't in too dissimilar a position to that of Beasley's, as he's also currently helping fill the void created by multiple absences around him. The Clippers begin Week 11 with Reggie Jackson in COVID-19 protocols and Paul George out indefinitely with a UCL tear. Jackson's absence could well outlast L.A.'s four-game schedule, which would afford Bledsoe primary ball-handling duties in that span. He's already averaged 18.5 points, 8.5 assists, 5.0 rebounds, 2.5 steals and 1.0 block across 36.5 minutes in his last two games while running with the first unit, a snapshot of the very well-rounded production he can bring to the table as a starting point guard in the short term.
Sit: Cade Cunningham, Pistons
59% start rate in CBS leagues
Cunningham will only have two opportunities to take the floor this coming week and is no sure bet to do so, considering he's been in health and safety protocols since Wednesday. Detroit doesn't play its first game of Week 11 until Wednesday and then is off again until Saturday. He'll probably play in at least one of those games, but even if he were guaranteed to be active for both, I'd lean toward trusting a three- or four-game option instead.
Start: Eric Gordon, Rockets
41% start rate in CBS leagues
Gordon continues to boast career-best efficiency, as he's shooting 49.0 percent, including 44.1 percent from behind the arc. The veteran is also flashing some skills as a facilitator with Kevin Porter (thigh) sidelined, as Gordon has dished out between five and nine assists in five of the last six contests. The dimes are a nice supplement to Gordon's fantasy production, which has historically been very scoring-dependent. With Houston improving but still needing to remain aggressive offensively due to its typically porous defensive play, Gordon shapes up as a solid streamer again for a four-game week.
Start: Chimezie Metu, Kings
18% start rate in CBS leagues
Metu has quietly come on as the Kings' starting power forward, averaging a solid 10.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 1.0 steals across 25.9 minutes over his last 12 games. The fourth-year big is posting career highs in multiple categories and encouragingly logged over 30 minutes in a four-game stretch prior to seeing just 19 against the Grizzlies on Sunday due to some early foul trouble. Metu seems to have a firm grasp of the starting power forward job over Marvin Bagley for the time being, and he'll have some very favorable frontcourt matchups this coming week against the Thunder, Mavericks (twice) and a depleted Heat team.
Sit: Tobias Harris, 76ers
83% start rate in CBS leagues
Harris continues to offer his trademark numbers in scoring, rebounds and assists, but with just a two-game week on tap, he'll be a candidate for your bench unless you're in particularly dire straits at forward. The veteran has also fallen short of 20 points in six of his last nine games, and now that the 76ers are nearly back to full health in the starting five, he can certainly be swapped out for a three- or four-game option this coming week.
Start: Al Horford, Celtics
52% start rate in CBS leagues
Horford is back from health and safety protocols as of Monday after missing the last five games, and he'll have four Week 11 games to jump back into form. The veteran is enjoying a solid season overall in his return to Boston, averaging 12.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 blocks while shooting 45.3 percent. Horford is naturally only a complementary offensive option when Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown are healthy, but his penchant for well-balanced lines and valuable shot-blocking make him a strong streamer on a four-game ledger. Tatum entered health and safety protocols Monday morning, which could lead to an uptick in Horford's offensive responsibilities.
Start: Ivica Zubac, Clippers
45% start rate in CBS leagues
Zubac is another member of the Clippers who should benefit from the team's short-handed roster. The big man already comes into the week on a roll, having averaged 13.0 points, 9.7 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 2.3 blocks per contest across 27 minutes in the last three games. The sixth-year center is averaging career bests in points (9.9), rebounds (8.0) and blocks (1.2), and he could certainly enjoy a boost in usage with Jackson and George out for the time being.
ALSO CONSIDER: Omer Yurtseven, Heat (14% start rate in CBS leagues)
Sit: Jonas Valanciunas, Pelicans
71% start rate in CBS leagues
Valanciunas is dealing with a non-COVID illness that caused him to miss the Pelicans' last two Week 10 games. There's no guarantee he'll have shaken the ailment by Tuesday's game against the Cavaliers, but even if he does play, he'll only have two games on his Week 11 schedule. The big man would normally be a fixture in your lineup during what has been a career-best season, but conditions are right for a one-week stint on the bench.