Saturday night saw Malik Beasley make his Minnesota debut with his first career double-double, while Timberwolves guard Jordan McLaughlin scored a career-high 24 points as the new-look Timberwolves snapped a 13-game losing streak in a blowout victory over the Clippers.
Beasley knocked down seven 3-pointers and pulled 10 boards in a game that saw the Wolves hit a franchise-record 26 3-pointers, which is also good for the second most in NBA history. It was clear that Beasley would assume a rewarding role in shifting from a reserve role in Denver's deep rotation to a starting gig with Minnesota, and his debut did not disappoint. You can still find Beasley -- who has emerged as a must-add option in all fantasy formats -- in free agency in more than 70% of ESPN leagues.
Per McLaughlin's offensive opus over the weekend, the undrafted two-way player for the Timberwolves is impressively averaging 20.8 PPG and 9.0 APG to go with 1.5 SPG in 34.2 MPG during his past two appearances for Minnesota. Rostered in less than one percent of ESPN leagues, McLaughlin should continue to consume a rewarding role for a Minnesota roster that has dealt off point guards Jeff Teague and Shabazz Napier in the past few weeks.
RJ Barrett, New York Knicks: 3 points (1-8 FG), 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 TO
Dillon Brooks, Memphis Grizzlies: 9 points (4-17 FG), 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 3 TO
Caris LeVert continued to shine for Brooklyn over the weekend, as the gifted scoring wing produced a career-high 37 points on Saturday on just 18 shots, becoming the third different Nets player to produce at least 35 points this season. With 15 points in the final frame, LeVert is being relied on as the team's key scoring option with Kyrie Irving sidelined. You can still add LeVert for the price of a roster spot in more than a quarter of ESPN leagues.
Golden State's Ky Bowman couldn't find his shot against the Lakers this past Saturday evening, but he did produce 11 dimes in a start, making him an interesting source of passing production going forward. Andrew Wiggins secured a season-high five steals in his Warriors debut and could actually gain value this season in what should be a high-usage role on a team suddenly thin at the wing after a busy deadline.
The Blazers' Gary Trent Jr. is quietly enjoying a strong stretch of play, as the young wing has averaged 18.4 PPG in 31.6 MPG during his past three outings. With 2.7 SPG during this stretch, Trent is proving to be of interest to fantasy investors past just his hot hand from the floor.
Kevin Porter Jr. is emerging as the rare bright spot for Cleveland, as the USC product has reached double-figure scoring in six straight while averaging 15.8 PPG and 2.3 3PG during this stretch. Andre Drummond made his debut for the Cavs on Sunday with 19 points and 14 rebounds in a very Drummond-like performance. I think we can assume a similar production pattern from the big man even while joining a deeper frontcourt in Cleveland.
Dallas' Seth Curry produced his fourth 25-point game of the season this past Saturday evening, having entered the season with just two such performances in his career. Curry also impressively became the active leader in 3-point percentage with a career clip of 43.6%, passing, well, his brother Stephen Curry for highest among active players. The Mavericks' Curry is most valuable while Luka Doncic is still sidelined with an ankle injury.
Injuries of note
Irving has been ruled out ahead of tonight's' matchup with the Pacers, making Spencer Dinwiddie and LeVert solid DFS options.
Analytics advantage for Monday
Detroit has listed Derrick Rose as doubtful and Luke Kennard as out for tonight's meeting with the Hornets. This means Bruce Brown, who is set to be active despite dealing with a right thumb sprain, should prove busy as a playmaker for the Pistons. During his past five outings, Brown Jr. has averaged 35.5 MPG while producing a line of 11 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 4.2 APG and 2.4 combined blocks and steals. You can add Brown for the price of a few clicks in roughly 88% of ESPN leagues as of Monday morning.
Top players to watch on Monday
I'll be watching the Timberwolves in Toronto as an interesting test for this new-look Minnesota roster. The surging Raptors present a real challenge for the Wolves, while it will be telling to see how Beasley and McLaughlin follow up on this past weekend's awesome shooting success.