Fantasy Basketball Week 9 Start' Em & Sit 'Em and schedule analysis
Alex Barutha goes through each position to find start and sit recommendations for Fantasy Week 9.
Week 9 is busy, with a myriad of teams playing four games. That allows plenty of opportunities for streaming, but the benefit won't be as dramatic as some other weeks, as there are no teams with only two games.
- Teams with four games: BOS, CLE, DAL, IND, LAC, LAL, MEM, MIA, OKC, PHI, PHO, SAC, TOR, WAS
- Teams with three games: ATL, BKN, CHA, CHI, DEN, DET GSW, HOU, MIL, MIN, NOR, NYK, ORL, POR, SAS, UTA
Consider Sitting: Trae Young, ATL (99% owned, 75% start)
Opponents: DAL, BOS, BKN
Young's shooting has fizzled over the last few weeks, which has resulted in him plummeting down the Fantasy ranks. He's shooting just 34.6 percent from the field and 67.9 percent from the free-throw line over the past 14 days, and he's down to 5.3 assists per game. During this stretch, he's been the 187th-ranked player, making him only valuable in the deepest of formats. On a three-game week, it may be time to sit the rookie until he can figure things out.
Consider Starting: Damyean Dotson, NYK (28% owned, 16% start)
Opponents: CLE, CHA, IND
Even with Friday's 2-for-11 performance, Dotson has been the 59th-ranked player over the past 14 days. Coach David Fizdale's varying rotation is a cause for concern, but he's trusted Dotson with at least 20 minutes and eight shots in each of the past five games. Through his first nine appearances this season, Dotson averaged 13.2 points (45.3% FG), 6.0 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 31.8 minutes, so we know his recent efforts aren't completely flukey.
Consider Sitting: Evan Fournier, ORL (95% owned, 58% start)
Opponents: DAL, CHI, UTA
Fournier is averaging 11.9 points on 37.5 percent shooting over the past two weeks, and his supplementary stats aren't enough to save him from being the 164th-ranked player over this stretch. The Magic are also relying on him less as Terrence Ross emerges as a legitimate offensive threat and Aaron Gordon picks up steam. Through the first 18 games of the season, Fournier took 14.9 shots per game. That figure has dipped down to 11.4 per contest over the past seven games.
Consider Starting: Terrence Ross, ORL (46% owned, 24% start)
Opponents: DAL, CHI, UTA
As mentioned above, Ross has usurped some of Evan Fournier's usage, taking 13.8 shots per game over the past six. Over that stretch, he's averaging 18.5 points, 3.2 rebounds. 1.8 assists and 1.3 steals while making 48.2 percent of his attempts from the field. Landing as the 58th-ranked Fantasy asset over the past two weeks, Ross should be owned and started in almost every format, especially since he's also been a top-100 player on the season.
Consider Sitting: Tim Hardaway, Jr., NYK (99% owned, 90% start)
Opponents: CLE, CHA, IND
Hardaway has been abysmal shooting the ball lately. Considering his volume shooting and lack of significant supplementary stats, that's tanked his Fantasy value. Over the past two weeks, he's shot only 31.9 percent from the field on 16.1 attempts, while adding just 3.4 assists and 2.1 rebounds, which has made him the 169th-ranked player over the last 14 days. You may still have to start Hardaway based on his scoring upside in 14-plus team formats, but Fantasy owners in shallower leagues may want to give him a rest.
Consider Starting: Al-Farouq Aminu, POR (62% owned, 37% start)
Opponents: HOU, MEM, TOR
Aminu saw only 25 minutes during Thursday's blowout win over the Suns, but during the previous three contests, he averaged 17.3 points, 9.7 boards, 1.3 assists and 1.0 steal in 33.0 minutes. He remains a volatile player but is still ranked 110th on the season and 82nd over the past 14 days. Those figures should warrant more than a 62 percent ownership rate and 37 percent start rate in CBS leagues.
Consider Sitting: Andrew Wiggins, MIN (98% owned, 65% start)
Opponents: GS, SAC, PHO
Wiggins went off for a season-high 26 points Wednesday against the Hornets, but it wasn't enough for him to crack the top-200 over the past two weeks. He's still shooting 35.1 percent over the past 14 days, plus just 65.0 percent from the charity stripe. Considering he's barely been a top-120 player on the season, Wiggins is someone to consider benching on every three-game week, especially with players like Jeff Teague, Robert Covington and Karl-Anthony Towns playing well around him.
Consider Starting: Juancho Hernangomez, DEN (41% owned, 21% start)
Opponents: MEM, OKC, TOR
Hernangomez continues to fill in nicely for the Nuggets at small forward while Will Barton (groin) remains out. Hernangomez is averaging 12.5 points (53.2 percent), 5.8 rebounds and 1.0 assists over the past two weeks. And while that line may not jump off the page, it's been good enough to translate to top-90 production. A three-game week against some formidable defenses isn't ideal but, at the very least, Hernangomez should be owned in more than 41 percent of leagues.
Consider Sitting: Willie Cauley-Stein, SAC (96% owned, 60% start)
Opponents: CHI, MIN, GS, DAL
The four-game week makes sitting Cauley-Stein a tough choice, but he's cooled off dramatically from the start of the season. He's dropped to the 146th-ranked player on the season, and he's barely been a top-200 player over the past 14 days. With Marvin Bagley set to return this weekend from a back injury, Cauley-Stein's extended slump may continue.
Consider Starting: Richaun Holmes, PHO (16% owned, 10% start)
Opponents: LAC, SA, DAL, MIN
In the wake of the Tyson Chandler buyout, Holmes has been seeing more run at center behind Deandre Ayton. Over the past 14 days, he's needed just under 19 minutes per game to be the league's 96th-ranked Fantasy player on the back of 10.1 points, 5.6 boards, 1.6 blocks and 1.0 steals while shooting 69.6 percent from the field. On a four-game week, it's difficult for owners in need of blocks, or depth at center, to ignore those numbers.
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