For the second consecutive week, we have a favorable schedule that tilts heavily toward four-game weeks and doesn't include any two-game teams. This is also the first full scoring period following the trade deadline, and the ripple effects of some of those moves, as well as some new long-term injuries and personnel decisions, will help guide multiple suggestions this week.
Teams with four games: Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Clippers, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, New Orleans Pelicans, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards
Without further ado, let's examine some of the tougher start/sit decisions for the coming week:
Start: Malik Monk, Hornets
18% start rate in CBS leagues
Monk is entering the week dealing with a bit of foot soreness that cost him Sunday's game against the Suns, but he should be available for the start of Charlotte's four-game week against the Wizards on Tuesday. Monk boasts a 27.4 percent usage rate and averages 23.4 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3.2 assists per 36 minutes with LaMelo Ball (wrist) off the floor this season. He also comes into the week averaging 16.2 points (48.3 percent shooting), 2.7 rebounds and 1.9 assists over 22.4 minutes across his last 15 games. With Ball most likely out for the season, Monk should enjoy an even steadier dose of playing time moving forward.
Start: Alec Burks, Knicks
29% start rate in CBS leagues
Burks enters the week with a streak of five consecutive 20-point games and nine straight double-digit scoring efforts, overall. He's only drawn two starts during that nine-game stretch, yet he's averaging 19.1 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.0 steal across 31.2 minutes. Burks is also draining an impressive 41.5 percent of his 5.9 3-point attempts per contest in that span and holds a career-best 40.6 percent success rate from distance on the season. Locked into a key scoring role for a competitive Knicks team, Burks could offer some solid multi-category contributions on a four-game week.
Also consider: Kevin Porter, Rockets (46% start rate in CBS leagues); Theo Maledon, Thunder (13% start rate in CBS leagues)
Sit: Kyle Lowry, Raptors
92% start rate in CBS leagues
Lowry missed Sunday's game against the Trail Blazers with right foot soreness, which would put his status for Monday's game against the Pistons, at minimum, in doubt. Toronto's three-game week further dampens Lowry's outlook, as does the fact that he's averaging a modest 12.7 points, 8.3 assists and 5.5 rebounds over his last six games, while shooting just 37.9 percent. Considering the risk of only getting one or two games from the vetearn this week, Lowry should be considered for a seat on the bench if you have a safer three or four-game option.
Start: Chuma Okeke, Magic
17% start rate in CBS leagues
Okeke was a hit in his first start since Aaron Gordon's trade to the Nuggets, posting 22 points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals over 37 minutes against the Trail Blazers on Friday. He followed it up with 14 points, six rebounds, three assists and one block of 29 minutes versus the Lakers on Sunday, a contest in which he drained three of his six attempts from behind the arc. Okeke is essentially a rookie this year after rehabbing a torn ACL all throughout last season, but the 16th overall pick in 2019 has been solid in limited opportunity this season. With plenty of minutes available and Terrence Ross still battling a knee injury, Okeke is worth considering on a four-game week.
Start: Rui Hachimura, Wizards
55% start rate in CBS leagues
Hachimura has been running hot for some time now, as he'll enter the week with averages of 18.3 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 1.0 steal across 37.8 minutes over his last eight games. The versatile big man shot an impressive 54.5 percent during that stretch, including 41.4 percent from behind the arc. Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal absorb a significant chunk of the Wizards' usage on any given night, but Hachimura has been trending upward in that regard – he's averaging 14 shot attempts per game during that eight-game sample, a nice bump up from his season-long figure (10.6 FGA/G).
Also consider: Marcus Morris, LAC (13% start rate in CBS leagues)
Sit: Lauri Markkanen, Bulls
65% start rate in CBS leagues
Markkanen has four games this coming week, but the combination of his recent production and an injury concern make him worthy of a potential benching. The second-year big man is dealing with a calf strain that has him designated as probable for Monday's game versus the Warriors, but it's possible he could face some limitations. Either way, Markkanen has averaged just 11.8 points (38.4% FG; 26.5% 3PT), 5.3 rebounds and 1.0 assist over his last six games, and the addition of another high-usage player in Nikola Vucevic won't help matters.
Start: Ivica Zubac, Clippers
20% start rate in CBS leagues
Zubac has now drawn seven consecutive starts in place of Serge Ibaka (back), averaging 11.7 points, 9.1 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.7 blocks across 28.9 minutes in those games. Ibaka enters a four-game week without a firm return timetable, but the fact that Clippers the Clippers have already ruled him out of Monday's matchup against Milwaukee keeps Zubac very much in starting consideration. The fifth-year big has performed well over starting stretches in the past, and he's even putting up career-best figures in both field-goal (64.3%) and free-throw percentage (82.6%) this season. Zubac also has 10 blocks over his last four games, headlined by a five-block performance in a win over San Antonio on Thursday.
Start: Moses Brown, Thunder
46% start rate in CBS leagues
Al Horford will not play the rest of the season as the Thunder look to develop young bigs, and Brown is Exhibit A in that regard. The 21-year-old's strong play helped prompt OKC's decision to move away from Horford, as Brown has put up 12.4 points, 12.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in 27.7 minutes over his last nine games. The second-year pro just signed a multi-year contract on Sunday, so the Thunder have every reason to prioritize his development down the stretch. Brown will be prone to some off nights, but for now he's tracking as one of the season's most notable Fantasy sleepers.
Sit: Enes Kanter, Trail Blazers
64% start rate in CBS leagues
Jusuf Nurkic has returned from his two-plus-month absence and logged 19 minutes in each of his first two games. That figure should continue inching upward during an upcoming three-game week for Portland. The big man's return has already led to Kanter moving back to the bench, where he played just 18 minutes in Sunday's win over the Raptors. While he's long proven capable of offering solid scoring and rebounding contributions in modest minutes, Kanter's stock is set to plummet as Nurkic moves toward a full workload.