Celtics, Clippers pick up wins on Monday

Celtics, Clippers pick up wins on MondayCeltics, Clippers pick up wins on Monday

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Another day, another two playoff games on the NBA schedule. And on Monday the designated visiting teams picked up wins, with Boston moving to within one win of the conference finals and the Clippers taking a 2-1 series lead on Denver. Jaylen Brown, Paul George and Nikola Jokic posted fantasy-friendly stat lines, while Michael Porter Jr. and Kawhi Leonard were also heard from.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»19″>Another day, another two playoff games on the NBA schedule. And on Monday the designated visiting teams picked up wins, with Boston moving to within one win of the conference finals and the Clippers taking a 2-1 series lead on Denver. Jaylen Brown, Paul George and Nikola Jokic posted fantasy-friendly stat lines, while Michael Porter Jr. and Kawhi Leonard were also heard from. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="— Bucks hope to have Giannis Antetokounmpo for Game 5» data-reactid=»20″>— Bucks hope to have Giannis Antetokounmpo for Game 5

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="The league’s reigning MVP managed to start Game 4 after injuring his right ankle early in Game 3, but after scoring 19 points in 11 minutes he had to leave the game after re-aggravating the injury. While Antetokounmpo wanted to give it another shot the team doctors denied him that chance, and now the question is whether or not he’ll be able to play Tuesday night. He’s listed as questionable, and it was reported by Shams Charania of The Athletic that the ankle feels similar to how it felt before Game 4.&nbsp;There is some optimism that Giannis will be able to go, and this will likely be a game-time decision just like Sunday. If he can’t go that means major usage/shot opportunities for Khris Middleton, who played 48 minutes in Game 4, with Eric Bledsoe and George Hill due to receive bumps as well.» data-reactid=»21″>The league’s reigning MVP managed to start Game 4 after injuring his right ankle early in Game 3, but after scoring 19 points in 11 minutes he had to leave the game after re-aggravating the injury. While Antetokounmpo wanted to give it another shot the team doctors denied him that chance, and now the question is whether or not he’ll be able to play Tuesday night. He’s listed as questionable, and it was reported by Shams Charania of The Athletic that the ankle feels similar to how it felt before Game 4. There is some optimism that Giannis will be able to go, and this will likely be a game-time decision just like Sunday. If he can’t go that means major usage/shot opportunities for Khris Middleton, who played 48 minutes in Game 4, with Eric Bledsoe and George Hill due to receive bumps as well.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="— Olynyk, Herro listed as questionable for Heat&nbsp;» data-reactid=»26″>— Olynyk, Herro listed as questionable for Heat 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Miami has two players listed as questionable on the report, with Kelly Olynyk dealing with a knee injury and Tyler Herro a hip injury. Olynyk made his return Sunday and was able to play ten minutes, scoring three points with four rebounds and three assists, and he has the potential to make an impact with more game time. But Erik Spoelstra may be a bit conservative with Olynyk’s minutes, especially given the way in which starter Bam Adebayo has been playing.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»27″>Miami has two players listed as questionable on the report, with Kelly Olynyk dealing with a knee injury and Tyler Herro a hip injury. Olynyk made his return Sunday and was able to play ten minutes, scoring three points with four rebounds and three assists, and he has the potential to make an impact with more game time. But Erik Spoelstra may be a bit conservative with Olynyk’s minutes, especially given the way in which starter Bam Adebayo has been playing. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Herro’s situation will be more impactful fantasy-wise, as he played 33 minutes in Game 4 and for the series is averaging 13.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.8 3-pointers per game while shooting 42.7 percent from three. Herro was listed as probable ahead of Game 4, so Monday’s update is a downgrade. Should he not be able to go that likely opens up more rotation minutes for Kendrick Nunn, but the Heat can also call on the experienced Andre Iguodala.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»28″>Herro’s situation will be more impactful fantasy-wise, as he played 33 minutes in Game 4 and for the series is averaging 13.0 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.8 3-pointers per game while shooting 42.7 percent from three. Herro was listed as probable ahead of Game 4, so Monday’s update is a downgrade. Should he not be able to go that likely opens up more rotation minutes for Kendrick Nunn, but the Heat can also call on the experienced Andre Iguodala

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="— JaVale McGee (ankle) listed as questionable for Game 3&nbsp;» data-reactid=»29″>— JaVale McGee (ankle) listed as questionable for Game 3 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Houston’s injury report ahead of Game 3 remains empty, but the Lakers have two additions to their list. JaVale McGee, who left Game 2 early due to soreness in his left ankle, is listed as questionable and Dion Waiters (left groin) is considered to be doubtful. Waiters’ status won’t have much of an impact fantasy-wise, as he was on the outside looking in even before Rajon Rondo made his return to action. Even if Waiters can go, Rondo and Alex Caruso are far better picks in any format.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»30″>Houston’s injury report ahead of Game 3 remains empty, but the Lakers have two additions to their list. JaVale McGee, who left Game 2 early due to soreness in his left ankle, is listed as questionable and Dion Waiters (left groin) is considered to be doubtful. Waiters’ status won’t have much of an impact fantasy-wise, as he was on the outside looking in even before Rajon Rondo made his return to action. Even if Waiters can go, Rondo and Alex Caruso are far better picks in any format. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="As for McGee, his being sidelined for Game 3 could free up a couple minutes for Dwight Howard (DNP-CD in Game 2) but because of the matchup it’s highly unlikely that he’d be a good fantasy option. If anything the absence of the Lakers’ starting center would bolster the fantasy value of Markieff Morris, who hit four 3-pointers and finished Sunday’s win with 16 points and five rebounds in 23 minutes. Even if McGee plays Morris is worthy of consideration, as he should be a rather cheap DFS play and is a better fit for this series. Anthony Davis, who played 28 of his 36 minutes in Game 2 at center, would be in a similar position for Game 3 if McGee can’t go.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»31″>As for McGee, his being sidelined for Game 3 could free up a couple minutes for Dwight Howard (DNP-CD in Game 2) but because of the matchup it’s highly unlikely that he’d be a good fantasy option. If anything the absence of the Lakers’ starting center would bolster the fantasy value of Markieff Morris, who hit four 3-pointers and finished Sunday’s win with 16 points and five rebounds in 23 minutes. Even if McGee plays Morris is worthy of consideration, as he should be a rather cheap DFS play and is a better fit for this series. Anthony Davis, who played 28 of his 36 minutes in Game 2 at center, would be in a similar position for Game 3 if McGee can’t go. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Editor’s Note:&nbsp;Whether you want to win a 50/50 or take down a GPP, use our DFS Optimizer, customizable projections and more to create the smartest lineups.&nbsp;Subscribe to all four major sports for as low as $7.99/month!» data-reactid=»32″>Editor’s Note: Whether you want to win a 50/50 or take down a GPP, use our DFS Optimizer, customizable projections and more to create the smartest lineups. Subscribe to all four major sports for as low as $7.99/month!

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Celtics 111, Raptors 89&nbsp;(Boston leads, 3-2)&nbsp;» data-reactid=»33″>Celtics 111, Raptors 89 (Boston leads, 3-2) 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="There wasn’t much suspense to be had in this one, as Boston was in control from the start and now holds a 3-2 lead in the series. Kemba Walker, true to his words after Game 4, was more aggressive and put up a line of 21 points (8-of-15 FGs, 4-of-5 FTs), four rebounds, seven assists, one blocked shot and one 3-pointer in 36 minutes. The 3-point shot remains an issue for him, as he’s now 2-of-12 from deep in his last two games. And he’s been inconsistent in that area for the series. In Games 1 and 3 Walker was a combined 8-of-14; in the other three games just 3-of-20. Regardless of the perimeter shooting struggles he’s still a good play in any format.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»34″>There wasn’t much suspense to be had in this one, as Boston was in control from the start and now holds a 3-2 lead in the series. Kemba Walker, true to his words after Game 4, was more aggressive and put up a line of 21 points (8-of-15 FGs, 4-of-5 FTs), four rebounds, seven assists, one blocked shot and one 3-pointer in 36 minutes. The 3-point shot remains an issue for him, as he’s now 2-of-12 from deep in his last two games. And he’s been inconsistent in that area for the series. In Games 1 and 3 Walker was a combined 8-of-14; in the other three games just 3-of-20. Regardless of the perimeter shooting struggles he’s still a good play in any format. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="All five Celtics starters scored in double figures, with Jaylen Brown (27/6/3 steals and three 3-pointers) leading the way. The change to the rotation: Brad Stevens effectively relied on six players, with all five starters getting at least 30 minutes and reserve Brad Wanamaker (15/3/2/1 with three 3-pointers) playing 28. Robert Williams and Grant Williams played nine minutes apiece and Semi Ojeleye seven, with Stevens going even smaller to combat Toronto’s use of pick-and-roll actions. Daniel Theis (15/8/1/2 blocks) had his best game of the series, and he’s the only Celtics post player worth considering right now. We’ll see if that changes should the Celtics advance.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»39″>All five Celtics starters scored in double figures, with Jaylen Brown (27/6/3 steals and three 3-pointers) leading the way. The change to the rotation: Brad Stevens effectively relied on six players, with all five starters getting at least 30 minutes and reserve Brad Wanamaker (15/3/2/1 with three 3-pointers) playing 28. Robert Williams and Grant Williams played nine minutes apiece and Semi Ojeleye seven, with Stevens going even smaller to combat Toronto’s use of pick-and-roll actions. Daniel Theis (15/8/1/2 blocks) had his best game of the series, and he’s the only Celtics post player worth considering right now. We’ll see if that changes should the Celtics advance. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Lastly, after the game Stevens revealed that Gordon Hayward is back in Orlando and is currently going through the quarantine process. When he’ll be able to contribute in games is unknown however, due to both quarantine and the ankle injury he suffered a couple weeks back. So don’t expect anything from Hayward in this series.» data-reactid=»40″>Lastly, after the game Stevens revealed that Gordon Hayward is back in Orlando and is currently going through the quarantine process. When he’ll be able to contribute in games is unknown however, due to both quarantine and the ankle injury he suffered a couple weeks back. So don’t expect anything from Hayward in this series.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Toronto now has its own injury concern to address, as Serge Ibaka was taken back to the locker room in the fourth quarter due to what Nick Nurse referred to after the game as “a little knock.” No specifics were given so we’ll have to wait until the first injury report is released, but Ibaka has been a key player for the Raptors in this series. He played 19 minutes, finishing with seven points, four rebounds, two blocks and one 3-pointer, and Ibaka has been a player that Boston has been forced to account for defensively.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»41″>Toronto now has its own injury concern to address, as Serge Ibaka was taken back to the locker room in the fourth quarter due to what Nick Nurse referred to after the game as “a little knock.” No specifics were given so we’ll have to wait until the first injury report is released, but Ibaka has been a key player for the Raptors in this series. He played 19 minutes, finishing with seven points, four rebounds, two blocks and one 3-pointer, and Ibaka has been a player that Boston has been forced to account for defensively. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Just as concerning for Toronto is the fact that Pascal Siakam can’t seem to get fully untracked. He shot 5-of-9 from the field, finishing with ten points, four rebounds and two assists in 29 minutes. Following the game there was conversation that the Raptors need to do more to get him going early, so that’s something to watch in Game 6. And no matter what plays are called, Siakam will need to be more aggressive from the start. Not attempting a single free throw is something that should not happen given Siakam’s importance to the rotation.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»42″>Just as concerning for Toronto is the fact that Pascal Siakam can’t seem to get fully untracked. He shot 5-of-9 from the field, finishing with ten points, four rebounds and two assists in 29 minutes. Following the game there was conversation that the Raptors need to do more to get him going early, so that’s something to watch in Game 6. And no matter what plays are called, Siakam will need to be more aggressive from the start. Not attempting a single free throw is something that should not happen given Siakam’s importance to the rotation. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content=""I'm not sure why he's been so out of rhythm since the restart. He hasn't had a lot of great games…,” Nurse said of Siakam. “It’s too bad because he was spectacular in last year’s playoffs &amp; he was spectacular all season long. We still have games to go. Hopefully he can get his rhythm.”&nbsp;» data-reactid=»43″>»I’m not sure why he’s been so out of rhythm since the restart. He hasn’t had a lot of great games…,” Nurse said of Siakam. “It’s too bad because he was spectacular in last year’s playoffs & he was spectacular all season long. We still have games to go. Hopefully he can get his rhythm.” 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Fred VanVleet (18/2/5/3 with two 3-pointers) and Norman Powell (16/1/3 with four 3-pointers) led the way offensively for the Raptors, who had ten players play at least 12 minutes on the night. Matt Thomas played 19 minutes, and Terence Davis and Chris Boucher played 12 apiece with the latter two getting the majority of their minutes once the game was already decided. Ibaka and Powell are the only Raptors reserves worth considering, as it’s difficult to see Boucher receiving a major minutes boost in an elimination game should Ibaka not be able to play on Wednesday.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»44″>Fred VanVleet (18/2/5/3 with two 3-pointers) and Norman Powell (16/1/3 with four 3-pointers) led the way offensively for the Raptors, who had ten players play at least 12 minutes on the night. Matt Thomas played 19 minutes, and Terence Davis and Chris Boucher played 12 apiece with the latter two getting the majority of their minutes once the game was already decided. Ibaka and Powell are the only Raptors reserves worth considering, as it’s difficult to see Boucher receiving a major minutes boost in an elimination game should Ibaka not be able to play on Wednesday. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Clippers 113, Nuggets 107&nbsp;(Los Angeles leads, 2-1)&nbsp;» data-reactid=»45″>Clippers 113, Nuggets 107 (Los Angeles leads, 2-1) 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Denver had multiple chances to pull away, but they were unable to produce the defensive stops needed to do so. The Clippers got the job done in the fourth quarter, thanks in large part to Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. George finished with 32 points (12-of-18 FGs, 3-of-3 FTs), four rebounds, four assists, two steals and five 3-pointers in 40 minutes, while Leonard added 23 points (9-of-19 FGs, 4-of-6 FTs), 14 rebounds, six assists, two blocks and one 3-pointer in 42 minutes. In total five Clippers scored in double figures, with the two stars being joined by Marcus Morris (12/4/3), Montrezl Harrell (11/3/2 steals) and Lou Williams (10/5/3/2 with two 3-pointers).&nbsp;» data-reactid=»46″>Denver had multiple chances to pull away, but they were unable to produce the defensive stops needed to do so. The Clippers got the job done in the fourth quarter, thanks in large part to Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. George finished with 32 points (12-of-18 FGs, 3-of-3 FTs), four rebounds, four assists, two steals and five 3-pointers in 40 minutes, while Leonard added 23 points (9-of-19 FGs, 4-of-6 FTs), 14 rebounds, six assists, two blocks and one 3-pointer in 42 minutes. In total five Clippers scored in double figures, with the two stars being joined by Marcus Morris (12/4/3), Montrezl Harrell (11/3/2 steals) and Lou Williams (10/5/3/2 with two 3-pointers). 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Doc Rivers went nine deep with his rotation, with Williams, Harrell, JaMychal Green (7/3/2/1 block and one 3-pointer) and Landry Shamet (3/1/2 with one 3-pointer) all playing at least 11 minutes off the bench. Green has been solid defensively, and his name was called early as Ivica Zubac picked up two fouls within the game’s first two minutes. His agility allows the Clippers to “drop” defensively when defending the pick-and-roll, and he’s also a bit more disciplined on that end of the floor than Harrell. Harrell and Williams remain the top fantasy options off the bench for the Clippers, however.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»47″>Doc Rivers went nine deep with his rotation, with Williams, Harrell, JaMychal Green (7/3/2/1 block and one 3-pointer) and Landry Shamet (3/1/2 with one 3-pointer) all playing at least 11 minutes off the bench. Green has been solid defensively, and his name was called early as Ivica Zubac picked up two fouls within the game’s first two minutes. His agility allows the Clippers to “drop” defensively when defending the pick-and-roll, and he’s also a bit more disciplined on that end of the floor than Harrell. Harrell and Williams remain the top fantasy options off the bench for the Clippers, however. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Denver finished the game with seven players that hit double figures in minutes played, with Mason Plumlee playing nine minutes off of the bench and Torrey Craig six. Michael Porter Jr. (18/10/1/3 with two 3-pointers) had his most productive offensive game of the series, and he put up those numbers in 23 minutes. If not for the occasionally questionable shot selection and defensive lapses, the rookie forward would likely be on the court even more than he currently is.» data-reactid=»48″>Denver finished the game with seven players that hit double figures in minutes played, with Mason Plumlee playing nine minutes off of the bench and Torrey Craig six. Michael Porter Jr. (18/10/1/3 with two 3-pointers) had his most productive offensive game of the series, and he put up those numbers in 23 minutes. If not for the occasionally questionable shot selection and defensive lapses, the rookie forward would likely be on the court even more than he currently is.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Porter’s production gave Denver the opportunity to win even with Jamal Murray (14/4/9/2 with two 3-pointers) and Jerami Grant (11/3 with one 3-pointer) combining to shoot 10-of-31 from the field. The Nuggets are now 0-6 this postseason when Murray fails to score at least 15 points. Porter Jr. has hit double figures in three of his last four games, and he’s grabbed at least six rebounds in each. He’s worth the gamble in DFS, even with&nbsp;the defensive issues, because Denver needs his offense.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»49″>Porter’s production gave Denver the opportunity to win even with Jamal Murray (14/4/9/2 with two 3-pointers) and Jerami Grant (11/3 with one 3-pointer) combining to shoot 10-of-31 from the field. The Nuggets are now 0-6 this postseason when Murray fails to score at least 15 points. Porter Jr. has hit double figures in three of his last four games, and he’s grabbed at least six rebounds in each. He’s worth the gamble in DFS, even with the defensive issues, because Denver needs his offense. 

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Nikola Jokic (32/12/8/1 with three 3-pointers) fell two assists shy of what would have been his fifth career playoff triple-double, but he did turn the ball over seven times (the Nuggets finished with 12 as a team). The full stat line removes the sting of those turnovers, however, and Jokic said after the game that he wasn’t sure if he’d be able to go because of his wrist injury. He ultimately played a series-high 39 minutes, nearly three more than his average for the postseason.» data-reactid=»50″>Nikola Jokic (32/12/8/1 with three 3-pointers) fell two assists shy of what would have been his fifth career playoff triple-double, but he did turn the ball over seven times (the Nuggets finished with 12 as a team). The full stat line removes the sting of those turnovers, however, and Jokic said after the game that he wasn’t sure if he’d be able to go because of his wrist injury. He ultimately played a series-high 39 minutes, nearly three more than his average for the postseason.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Gary Harris racked up another four steals, while also accounting for ten points, one rebound, six assists and two 3-pointers in 35 minutes. With his minutes increasing by the game Harris has some value, especially for those looking for production in the defensive stat categories.&nbsp;» data-reactid=»51″>Gary Harris racked up another four steals, while also accounting for ten points, one rebound, six assists and two 3-pointers in 35 minutes. With his minutes increasing by the game Harris has some value, especially for those looking for production in the defensive stat categories.