C.J. Watson bails out struggling D-Rose

April, 13, 2012
With Derrick Rose struggling mightily in his return from injury against the Heat on Thursday night, C.J. Watson was more than capable of filling in. Watson finished with 16 points, nine rebounds and three steals, helping the Bulls to an overtime win. Watson has a chance of maintaining some value even with Rose back in the lineup -- he played 27 minutes to John Lucas' zero Thursday night -- and is worth keeping around, especially if the Bulls choose to sit Rose again in an attempt to get him healthy for the playoffs.

Rose, meanwhile, had an extremely rough night; he was just 1-for-13 from the floor (though he did manage eight assists in 25 minutes). Obviously, Rose is a good enough player that he should be in your lineup as long as he's in the Bulls' lineup, but it's clear at the moment that there might be some rough patches before he gets back to full strength.

Looking back

• Timberwolves center Nikola Pekovic has had a bit of an aversion to rebounding of late -- he averaged a measly 3.8 boards in his past five games -- but did manage six rebounds in 33 minutes against the Clippers with Kevin Love (concussion) out of the lineup. Pekovic is worth keeping in your lineup for his scoring and field goal percentage, but if he can start rebounding with the fervor he displayed earlier in the season, he could be a major factor in fantasy leagues down the stretch.

• In other Timberwolves news, Derrick Williams had a terrible game while filling in for Love in the starting lineup, but Anthony Randolph had another productive game (16 points, nine rebounds, three blocks) off the bench. I'd be tempted to play Williams going forward despite his struggles if Love remains out of the lineup, but Randolph should definitely be in your lineup, and could actually be a top-tier fantasy guy for the last few games of the season.

Brandan Wright has been playing some fantastic basketball of late for the Mavericks, who beat the Warriors on Thursday. Wright had 16 points, nine rebounds and two blocks, and is averaging 13.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.8 blocks, while shooting 64 percent shooting from the floor, over his past four games. He's worth picking up in most league setups.

Looking ahead

• With Pacers starting point guard Darren Collison (strained groin) questionable, Friday night offers a perfect opportunity to get the Cavs' Lester Hudson into your lineup. Hudson is averaging 15 points, four rebounds and four assists in eight games since he joined the team a few weeks back, and has often been the focal point of the offense with Kyrie Irving out of commission.

• Boston's Ray Allen will miss Friday night's game against the Raptors, and that makes it a great night to play Avery Bradley. While Bradley is averaging just 9.8 points and not much else over his past five games, he's also shooting high percentages from the floor and the line, and the Raptors, a pretty mediocre defensive team, tend to give up good numbers to guards. Additionally, if you are desperate for 3-point shooting, you might want to think about playing Mickael Pietrus, who returned to the Celtics' lineup Wednesday and played 29 minutes.

• Make sure Wizards center Kevin Seraphin is in your lineup against the Knicks tonight. Seraphin had 24 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks against the Magic on Tuesday night, and is averaging 16.6 points, 9.0 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks over his past five games.

Eric Gordon is doubtful and Jarrett Jack will be out for the Hornets against the Jazz, and Greivis Vasquez has been playing pretty well of late filling in for those guys, averaging 13.4 points, 7.3 assists and 1.6 3-pointers over his past five games. He definitely belongs in your lineup.



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