We're loaded up with plenty of games in Week 14, as a significant chunk of the league plays four times. The Bucks and Hornets are the only teams with two games, and they play each other in Paris on Jan. 24.
Here's the full breakdown:
Teams with four games: ATL, BOS, BKN, CHI, DEN, DET, HOU, IND, LAC, LAL, MEM, MIN, NOP, NYK, OKC, ORL, PHO, SAN, TOR, WAS
Teams with three games: CLE, DAL, GS, MIA, PHI, POR, SAC, UTA
Teams with two games: CHA, MIL
Here are some players to consider starting and some to consider sitting:
Consider Starting: Kris Dunn, CHI
Opponents: @Mil, Min, Sac, @Cle
Dunn's ownership percentage continues to stun me, as he's owned in just 47% of CBS leagues. He is consistently one of the best sources of steals in the NBA, and his 14 steals over the past week rank fifth, only behind Markelle Fultz (15), Terrence Ross (15), Marcus Smart (17) and Robert Covington (18) — with the first three playing more games than Dunn. He isn't a complete dud outside of his defense, either, racking up 4.0 assists per game across the past 14 days. That's culminated in a rank of 111 on a per-game basis during that timeframe, which is certainly good enough to warrant starting on a four-game week in many leagues.
Consider Sitting: Jeff Teague, ATL
Opponents: Tor, LAC, @OKC, Was
Many fantasy owners already weren't starting Teague, but he's on enough rosters to be worth mentioning given the recent trade. Teague was dealt from Minnesota to Atlanta in a blockbuster deal that also sent Treveon Graham to the Hawks and Allen Crabbe to the Timberwolves. Given that he was ranked just 167th over the past two weeks, there was going to be a reason to keep Teague on your bench anyway. Definitely keep him there for Week 14 as we figure out what his role is going to be. I can understand players who opt to drop Teague given the move, but I wouldn't have such a quick trigger myself. It's possible we see some three-guard lineups in Atlanta that include Teague, Trae Young and Kevin Huerter. If Teague can find a way to garner 25 minutes per game, he could retain Fantasy relevance.
Consider Starting: Marcus Smart, BOS
Opponents: LAL, Mem, @Orl, @NO
Smart is perennially undervalued in Fantasy, which is odd given that he garners plenty of favorable mentions from the media for being a defensive anchor on a great team. We touched on his ability to rack up steals in the Kris Dunn section, but Smart is more than that; he's a three-point shooter and a secondary ballhandler. He's ranked 71st overall over the past two weeks, and he has eight performances this season (31 games played) with at least four assists, two made threes and a steal. His 37.0 field-goal percentage is hard on the eyes, but he takes over half of his shots from beyond the arc, and he's also a good free-throw shooter (82.9 percent).
Consider Sitting: Alec Burks, GS
Opponents: @Por, Uta, Ind
Burks has been one of the most successful Fantasy sleepers this season as one of the few experienced backcourt players healthy enough to step on the court for Golden State. But the shooting has been rough lately. Over the past 14 days, Burks has taken 13.1 attempts per contest, but he's hitting at a rate of just 31.5 percent. He's managed to keep his scoring up at 17.1 points through red-hot free-throw shooting (96.0 percent), but that's not really sustainable. He's also provided virtually nothing defensively over this stretch, averaging just 0.3 steals. With many teams on a four-game week and the Warriors only playing thrice, it might be a week to let Burks lay bricks on your bench.
Consider Starting: Jae Crowder, MEM
Opponents: NO, @Bos, @Det, Pho
Anyone who has brought a basketball near Crowder over the past two weeks knows that he's looking to swipe it, and his 2.2 steals per game over the past two weeks rank only behind Robert Covington (3.0) and Anthony Davis (3.0). Crowder has also been effective from beyond the arc (2.0 threes) and the charity stripe (90.9 percent) during this stretch, leading to a surprising rank of 34. That number isn't sustainable, but Crowder has been a top-130 player for the season as a whole, and he's coming up on a not-so-challenging four-game week.
Consider Sitting: Andrew Wiggins, MIN
Opponents: Den, @Chi, Hou, OKC
Wiggins is back to his old tricks — shooting inefficiently and not providing much value elsewhere. He's ranked 188th over the past two weeks, averaging 14.0 points on 37.6 percent shooting from the field and 75.0 percent from the charity stripe. He's also averaging just 3.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.3 threes. If you're punting field-goal percentage, there's an argument to start him in deeper formats. But his upcoming week isn't particularly easy with matchups against the Nuggets, Rockets and Thunder.
Consider Starting: Nemanja Bjelica, SAC
Opponents: @Mia, @Det, @Chi
Living up to his nickname of "Professor Big Shot", Bjelica is shooting 50.7 percent from the field for 16.0 points over the past two weeks, which includes 2.8 made threes per contest. He's been able to provide value as a rebounder (9.8) and defender (1.3 steals) as well. In the past, there was always a fear he would suddenly start losing minutes to up-and-coming Kings frontcourt players (Marvin Bagley, Harry Giles), but it doesn't seem like Sacramento can afford to lower Bjelica's playing time.
Consider Sitting: Lauri Markkanen, CHI
Opponents: @Mil, Min, Sac, @Cle
After some hot shooting in December made me think Markkanen had turned the corner, now I'm not so sure. He's ranked 135th over the past two weeks. While his 2.3 threes per game have been a nice boost for Fantasy players, he's been providing virtually nothing in assists, steals or blocks, combining for 2.0 per game. That won't get it done when he's scoring and rebounding at an average clip. If you're in a 14-team league, you'll probably still have to start him given that the Bulls are on a four-game week. But players in 10-team leagues should explore other avenues first.
Consider Starting: Mitchell Robinson, NYK
Opponents: @Cle, LAL, Tor, Bkn
A toe injury had been slowing Robinson down, but he was able to log 30 minutes during Thursday's game against the Suns, posting 12 points, eight rebounds, three steals and two blocks. Fantasy players probably can't expect him to consistently see minutes in the upper-20s, but he's managed to be the 87th-best player overall this season in only 22.6 minutes per game. Robinson provides a great boost to field-goal percentage (71.3) and blocks (1.7) that can help anyone's squad, even in 10-team formats.
Consider Sitting: Tristan Thompson, CLE
Opponents: NY, Was, Chi
The center spot in continues to be a difficult one to navigate, as there aren't many high-level options, and some leagues require you to start two. If that's the case, you won't be able to fade Thompson. His floor is too high, even on a three-game week. But if your format is 10- or 12-teams and only one starting center is required, the conversation changes. With so many solid centers on four-game weeks, it won't take a ton to match Thompson's expected total production. Plus, if you need blocks, Thompson isn't your guy. He's averaging just 1.0 swat over the past 14 days.