There were only two games because of Super Bowl Sunday, but that didn’t take away from some big-time performances. Jayson Tatum out-dueled Trae Young in the first game, while Anthony Edwards lit up Tyrese Haliburton and the new-look Pacers. Let’s dive in!
Celtics 105, Hawks 95
The Celtics extended their win streak to eight games with this win, and Jayson Tatum is a big reason why. He finished this game with a line of 38/10/3/1/2 and shrugged off a poor first quarter (four points, 2-of-7 shooting) to finish 13-of-27 from the floor and 4-of-10 from deep. When he’s playing this well, the Celtics are a hard team to beat. Jaylen Brown didn’t have his best game, but he doesn’t need to when Tatum is playing that well. He finished with a line of 16/9/3. Marcus Smart has been pivotal to the Celtics success. They’re now 10-1 since he returned from an injury in the latter half of January. He’s been improving on his assists numbers, finishing with seven or more assists for the fifth time since in the past 11 games. And of course, he added in a steal. Robert Williams did what he does best: catch lobs, block shots, and rebound. He finished with 10 points, 14 rebounds, two blocks, and shot 5-for-6 from the floor. Al Horford only played 24 minutes but finished with eight points, six rebounds, and a block without missing a shot. He doesn’t usually shoot that well, but he has been a solid source of rebounds, blocks, and assists (for a center) despite the limited playing time. Grant Williams continues to provide some 3-point value, but not much else despite playing 27 minutes. Derrick White had been hovering around 31% from deep with the Spurs, which was a career-worst for him. However, he shot 3-of-7 on triples in his first game as a Celtic and hit two more early in this game. He ended up regressing to the mean and finishing 2-of-10 from deep, but still finished with a line of 14/4/5/2/1. The Celtics like a smaller lineup with White playing alongside Tatum, Brown, Smart, and Williams, so his value shouldn’t take too much of a hit now that he’s in a bench role. Payton Pritchard ended up going scoreless in 11 minutes, while Aaron Nesmith didn’t even play. Brad Stevens made it seem like trading Josh Richardson, Romeo Langford, and Dennis Schroder would open up some minutes for them, but it doesn’t appear that’s entirely true.
With John Collins sidelined until the All-Star Break because of some discomfort in his right foot, Danilo Gallinari is in line to get a few starts. Hopefully the rest aren’t like this one. He finished with five points on 2-of-8 shooting (1-of-3 from deep) in 23 minutes. Yep. That’s his statline. No fouls, no turnovers, no rebounds. Nothing. For streaming purposes, hopefully it’ll get better, but it doesn’t seem likely in their next game against Cleveland. Maybe the Orlando matchup will be more favorable. Trae Young didn’t have his best shooting night (9-of-26 from the floor), but still finished with another 30/10 game while adding four threes and two steals. This was the 45th game of his career with at least 30 points and 10 assists, which puts him tied at ninth with Isiah Thomas. Kevin Huerter continued his shooting struggles from their last game, finishing with seven points in 26 minutes before fouling out. He’s been the starter lately, but that could change if Bogdan Bogdanovic keeps playing the way he has been. Bogi has averaged 24.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, three assists, 1.5 steals, and four triples over the past two games. He scored a season-high for the second straight game and hit timely shots for the Hawks. His success definitely takes away from Huerter’s opportunity. Clint Capela clearly benefited from the absence of Collins. He played 31 minutes, which is the second most he’s played since 2022 started, and grabbed 17 rebounds, which is the most he’s had since the calendar flipped. He even made both of his free throws! Capela should continue to roll, but he does have more difficult matchups against the bigs of the Cavs and Magic. Onyeka Okongwu didn’t have an excellent performance, grabbing five rebounds and blocking a shot to go along with his four points. What he does doesn’t always show up in the stat sheet, but fantasy managers may need him to put some more numbers up. He’s shown well against star bigs, so hopefully he’ll be better the next two games.
Timberwolves 129, Pacers 120
What a turnaround it’s been for Anthony Edwards. After struggling for a few games because of some knee soreness, he’s battled through it and been excellent the past three. He’s averaged a line of 31.3/4/4.3/1.3/1 with 4.3 triples. He scored 37 on seven 3-pointers and added four steals in this game. D'Angelo Russell scored 23 points with six assists and only one turnover. Karl-Anthony Towns really struggled in this game in some aspects, while being very effective in others. The good: 15 points, 13 rebounds, and three assists in just 22 minutes. The bad: he only played 22 minutes because he fouled out. The ugly: he still managed to turn it over five times. It’s a pretty surprising outcome considering his matchup, but he’s too good to not bounce back. Patrick Beverley finished with a full line of 13/4/2/1/2 with three 3-pointers. His percentages have been down over the past few months, but he shot it well in this one. In fact, he’s shot better from distance than he has overall this month. Jarred Vanderbilt didn’t fill up the stocks like he tends to do, but he did still finish with a block and seven rebounds. Jaden McDaniels played 30 minutes off the bench and finished with 11 points and two stocks. Even though he’s out of the starting lineup, it’s nice to see he can still produce. Malik Beasley didn’t shoot the ball as much as he usually does, which allowed him to be more effective than he usually is. He finished with 10 points on 3-of-6 shooting to go with two rebounds, two assists, and no turnovers. While he likely won’t continue to shoot that efficiently, it’s a nice bonus when he does. Naz Reid played 23 minutes, finishing with 13 points and three blocks while making all seven of his free throw attempts. He’s shooting 72.8% from the stripe this year, so don’t get used to it.
Tyrese Haliburton seems to be adjusting to his new team nicely. In fact, his new teammates probably love him for the 16 assists he dished out. He also added in 22 points, six triples, and five rebounds. He tied his career-high with the 3-pointers, but actually fell one assist short of tying his career-high, which he set in his last game as a King. He’s also played in 40+ minutes in both of his games as a Pacer, which bodes well for his fantasy opportunity. Oshae Brissett recorded his second consecutive double-double with 22 points and 13 rebounds while also swatting two shots for the second straight night. As long as their rotation looks like it does, Brissett is a must-add. He’s rostered in only 30% of Yahoo! leagues. After showing well in his first game with the team, Buddy Hield really struggled with his shot in this game. He finished with a full line of 13/8/1/1/1, but finished 6-of-19 from the floor, including 1-of-13 on triples. The Pacers, and fantasy GMs, need him to be much better. Chris Duarte left this game after just four minutes with a toe injury and is going to be out through the All-Star Break. A tough blow for a guy that had been playing well since Caris LeVert was shipped to Cleveland. Goga Bitadze continues to be the starting center, but only played 19 minutes in this game. Jalen Smith ended up playing 23 minutes off the bench and shined with 17 points, 12 rebounds, and a block. After playing well with Chris Paul, he’s really ready to prosper on a younger team that can give him minutes. If you sold when Deandre Ayton got healthy, it’s time to buy back in. Lance Stephenson ended up playing 32 minutes off the bench and finished with 21/3/4. His role generally isn’t consistent enough for him to be valuable in fantasy, but when he has a nice game, you just have to tip your cap to him. Terry Taylor continues to be one of the best rebounding guards in the league. In just 13 minutes, he finished with 10 points and five rebounds. Per 36, you’re looking at about 28 points and 14 rebounds. If he ever gets the minutes like he was when every single big on the team was out, he can be a fantasy monster.