Sun Mar 3 11:01pm ET
Field Level Media
A dominant first half allowed the Boston Celtics to extend their winning streak to 11 games by beating the visiting Golden State Warriors 140-88 on Sunday.
Boston made 15 of 24 3-point attempts in the first two quarters and led 82-38 at halftime. Boston's 44-point halftime lead was the largest in the franchise's history.
The Celtics shot 60 percent from the field in the first half (30 of 50), when they committed one turnover. The Warriors trailed by as many as 45 points in the second quarter. Each team rested its starters for all or most of the second half.
Jaylen Brown led Boston with 29 points, and Jayson Tatum added 27 on his 26th birthday. Boston made 25 of 49 3-pointers (51 percent) in the win.
Lester Quinones tossed in a team-high 17 points for the Warriors, who trailed 115-62 after three quarters. Boston led by as many as 56 points in the fourth. Stephen Curry went 2-for-13 from the field (0-for-9 from 3-point territory) in the first half and finished the game with four points. He did not play in the second half.
Knicks 107, Cavaliers 98
Josh Hart posted his third triple-double of the season for visiting New York, which lost Jalen Brunson in the opening minute before outlasting Cleveland in a battle of undermanned Eastern Conference contenders.
Brunson didn't return after suffering a left knee injury while hoisting his only shot barely 30 seconds after the opening tip. Following the game, Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said Brunson has a knee contusion. X-rays came back negative.
Hart finished with 13 points and 10 assists while tying a career high with 19 rebounds. Donte DiVincenzo had 28 points, including the tiebreaking layup that gave the Knicks the lead for good with 5:39 left in the third. Evan Mobley (13 points, 13 rebounds) had a double-double for the Cavaliers, who also got a team-high 21 points from Sam Merrill.
Spurs 117, Pacers 105
Victor Wembanyama strutted his stuff while amassing 31 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, six blocked shots and a steal to help San Antonio to a rousing win over visiting Indiana.
Malaki Branham added 18 points for the Spurs, with Devin Vassell and Keldon Johnson scoring 17 apiece.
T.J. McConnell led the Pacers with a season-high 26 points, while Pascal Siakam added 21. Myles Turner produced 16 points and 10 rebounds.
76ers 120, Mavericks 116
Tobias Harris scored 28 points and knocked down a critical 3-pointer as Philadelphia held off a ferocious rally by host Dallas to earn a win.
Philadelphia was in position to cruise to the finish line when it led by 15 with six minutes left in the game, but Luka Doncic (38 points, 11 boards, 10 assists) then took over. He scored nine points in a span of just two minutes to get the lead down to nine, helping Dallas eventually pull within 110-105 with 1:34 to go.
But Harris pushed the margin to eight with his triple from the corner, and the 76ers held on for their second straight win. Tyrese Maxey added 24 points for Philadelphia, which also got 21 from Kelly Oubre Jr. For Dallas, Kyrie Irving contributed 28 points.
Clippers 89, Timberwolves 88
Kawhi Leonard scored 32 points on 12-for-26 shooting and Los Angeles outlasted Minnesota in Minneapolis.
Norman Powell added 24 points on 9-for-13 shooting, including a 6-for-8 showing from beyond the arc, for the Clippers. Paul George finished with 15 points as Los Angeles overcame a rough game from James Harden, who finished with four points and went 0-for-10 from the field.
Anthony Edwards paced the Timberwolves with a team-high 27 points on 9-for-20 shooting. Karl-Anthony Towns had 18 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, and Rudy Gobert finished with 12 points and 16 rebounds.
Magic 113, Pistons 91
Paolo Banchero piled up 29 points, eight rebounds and five assists and Orlando pulled away from visiting Detroit.
Banchero has now scored 20 or more points in a team-high 39 games this season. Wendell Carter Jr. had 19 points and eight rebounds and Markelle Fultz made all eight of his shots for 16 points as the Magic completed a four-game sweep of the season series.
The Pistons have lost eight of their past nine games. Evan Fournier led Detroit with 17 points, Simone Fontecchio put up 15, Jalen Duren added 11 and Isaiah Stewart had 10.
Raptors 111, Hornets 106
RJ Barrett scored 23 points and Toronto defeated visiting Charlotte.
Immanuel Quickley added 22 points and 11 assists for the Raptors, who had lost their two previous games. Ochai Agbaji had 13 points and career-best nine rebounds to go along with two blocked shots.
Brandon Miller scored 26 points for the Hornets, who have lost four in a row. Miles Bridges scored 20 points.
New York Knicks guard Jalen Brunson (knee) was injured in Sunday night's win over the Cleveland Cavaliers. Playing less than one minute, the former Villanova Wildcat exited with what appeared to be a severe left knee injury. However, it seems the Knicks dodged a bullet, with head coach Tom Thibodeau reporting that X-rays were negative. Even more promising, Thibodeau added that Brunson has a knee contusion, which is certainly fantastic news. The 27-year-old has had the best season of his career in 2023-24, averaging 27.7 points, 6.7 assists, and 3.8 rebounds. The Knicks don't play again until Wednesday against the Atlanta Hawks. But based on the update from Thibs, Brunson could be out there. On the other hand, the Knicks need him healthy if the team hopes to advance deep into the postseason, so he could miss a game or two until he's fully healthy. If that's the case, Miles McBride, scoring 16 points on Sunday evening, would make a fine addition to most fantasy rosters.
Milwaukee Bucks forward Khris Middleton (ankle) is officially out on Monday against the Clippers. The 32-year-old is nearing a month on the shelf, although he has practiced in a limited capacity of late. However, with Middleton still out of the equation, Jae Crowder should continue to take his place in the lineup. Crowder has averaged only 5.4 points and 4.1 rebounds in 14 starts this season, making him an unattractive fantasy option under normal circumstances. Yet, with Giannis Antetokounmpo (Achilles) in danger of missing Monday's game, Crowder could be much more aggressive on both sides of the floor.
Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson (illness) isn't listed on the NBA's official injury report heading toward Monday's contest against the Washington Wizards. The veteran wasn't feeling well and didn't suit up on Saturday against the Miami Heat, allowing Talen Horton-Tucker to get more involved. Clarkson combined for just nine points in his previous two games, so fantasy managers may have concerns about putting him into their lineups. However, with Lauri Markkanen (hip) ruled out for Monday night, Clarkson could benefit significantly from a production standpoint.
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (ankle) has been tagged as questionable for the Monday night contest against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The superstar forward made history during their last game as he surpassed the 40,000 points mark in a loss to the Denver Nuggets. Now, he's back on the injury report as he continues to deal with ankle issues. He's popped up in the injury report many times for the ankle injury but has played in the last five games and clocked over 35 minutes in each of them. If he's unable to play, Cam Reddish or Spencer Dinwiddie could join the starting five, but they've been a bit too inconsistent to be surefire streaming options.
Utah Jazz center Walker Kessler (foot) won't play in Monday's game against the visiting Wizards. The 22-year-old will now miss his third consecutive contest because of a sprained foot. As a result, Taylor Hendricks should continue to fill the hole in the lineup. The 2023 No. 9 overall pick has shown flashes of promise in five starts this season, averaging 9.4 points and 5.8 rebounds. While Hendricks has a way to go before becoming a universal option for all fantasy lineups, he should remain more productive while Kessler is on the shelf.
Washington Wizards forward Bilal Coulibaly has been cleared to return on Monday after a three-game absence. According to Josh Robbins of The Athletic, Coulibaly was cleared from the injury report after putting in a full team practice on Sunday. The rookie started in four consecutive outings before getting hurt and he's been getting more consistent minutes over the last month or so. So far this year, Coulibaly is averaging 8.2 points, 4.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.4 turnovers across 26.7 minutes per game. His inconsistent output has made him more fantasy-relevant in deeper leagues, so his return doesn't make him an automatic start.
Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen (quad) has been ruled out for Monday against the Washington Wizards. The All-Star wing hasn't missed a game since December 21 and even played a total of 40 minutes in their last contest on Saturday. With Walker Kessler (foot) also ruled out, the frontcourt is going to be very thin, and it's unclear at the moment how much time Markkanen will have to miss with this quad contusion. They'll likely opt for a smaller lineup with John Collins at center and Taylor Hendricks remaining in the starting power forward spot. Talen Horton-Tucker and Brice Sensabaugh are the two that are most likely to move into the starting five while Omer Yurtseven will get the backup center minutes.
New York Knicks guard Jalen Brunson (leg) suffered an apparent non-contact injury to his leg in the opening minutes of their Sunday night game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Based on the replays, it looked to be a knee injury, which would make the non-contact part of it even scarier if that's the case. The injury took place in the first minutes of the game and he hasn't returned to the game since. He tried putting weight on his leg to walk back to the locker room but had to be helped off by teammates. Further updates will likely come out after the team can take some X-rays and an MRI, so fantasy managers will want to stay tuned. In the meantime, Miles McBride and Donte DiVincenzo will likely see a lot of the point guard duties.
Toronto Raptors center Jakob Poeltl (finger) left the game against the Charlotte Hornets in the second quarter with a dislocated pinky finger. During his 15 minutes of playing time, Poeltl finished with eight points, three assists, two rebounds, one block, and one turnover while shooting 4-for-6 from the floor. The veteran big man has provided a much-needed inside presence since returning from injury. In the 13-game stretch since then, he's averaged 12.7 points, 9.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 1.9 blocks, and 1.5 turnovers per game. Kelly Olynyk has seen some added opportunities and should move into the starting five if Poeltl has to miss any more time. Jontay Porter would also get some more minutes from the bench.
Brooklyn Nets forward Ben Simmons (back) remains on the injury report but was at least listed as questionable while he still suffers from nerve impingement in his lower back. Simmons has been out for the last three games after appearing in three consecutive games before that. The 27-year-old has appeared in 15 total games so far this season and he vowed to give the team everything he has whether he's hurt or fully healthy. When he plays, he has some value in deeper fantasy leagues, but his value is very limited since he hasn't been on the court. If he has to miss another game, Jalen Wilson and Dorian Finney-Smith will continue to see more minutes.
Phoenix Suns guard Bradley Beal (hamstring) is listed as probable for their game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The star combo guard played in their last game on Saturday against the Houston Rockets but he was only able to play 20 minutes. In that time, he registered just seven points, two rebounds, two assists, and two turnovers while shooting 3-for-6 from the floor. It's unclear how many minutes he'll receive in this matchup but with Devin Booker (ankle) ruled out, they'll need contributions from Beal to get a win over a very good Thunder team. Grayson Allen and Eric Gordon will likely play big roles if Beal can't put it in a full workload.
Memphis Grizzlies forward/center Jaren Jackson Jr. (quadriceps) isn't expected to play on Monday in Brooklyn. The reigning Defensive Player of the Year has missed the previous two games because of a quadriceps issue. It's unlikely the Grizzlies will rush him back, considering the team is a long shot to make the postseason. At any rate, until Jackson is back on the floor, Lamar Stevens could remain in the starting lineup. However, Stevens isn't a consistent scorer, making him hard to trust for fantasy purposes.
Portland Trail Blazers forward Jerami Grant (quadriceps) is doubtful ahead of Monday's game in Minnesota. He logged 15 minutes on Saturday night against Memphis before exiting with quadriceps soreness, so an injury designation was expected. The Blazers are hurting on the offensive end, considering Malcolm Brogdon (elbow), Scoot Henderson (adductor), and Shaedon Sharpe (abdomen) aren't available. To make matters worse, Deandre Ayton (hand) may not be ready to return. As a result, Anfernee Simons should be the No. 1 option on the offensive end. At the same time, Toumani Camara and Jabari Walker could see a significant uptick in fantasy production.
Portland Trail Blazers guard Matisse Thybulle (hip) has drawn a questionable tag for Monday's game against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The defensive specialist has only missed two games all season, but he's dealing with hip soreness right now which could potentially knock him out of a third game. He hasn't been the best fantasy asset despite getting regular minutes on a rebuilding Blazers squad. If he's unable to suit up, there will be more opportunities for Ashton Hagans, Jabari Walker, and Dalano Banton off of the bench. The former two would be the better streaming options after receiving north of 25 minutes each in the last couple of games.
Portland Trail Blazers center Deandre Ayton (hand) is questionable for Monday's matchup with the Minnesota Timberwolves. He's missed the last two games because of a sprained wrist, an injury he sustained during a recent loss to the Miami Heat. The 25-year-old hasn't been ruled out, so it seems he's improving. However, if Ayton misses another game, Duop Reath, coming off a 12-point, six-rebound, three-block effort on Saturday versus Minnesota, deserves a spot in every fantasy lineup.
Cleveland Cavaliers forward Caris LeVert (elbow) won't play in Sunday's contest versus the New York Knicks. After missing Friday's victory over the Detroit Pistons with a sprained right elbow, LeVert is also unavailable on Sunday. Presenting third-round fantasy value in nine-category leagues over the past week, the 29-year-old sixth man is offering 14.3 points on 50.0% shooting from the field, 9.7 assists, 7.7 rebounds, and 1.7 threes per game covering his last three appearances. LeVert aims to return in Tuesday's clash with the first-place Boston Celtics. Isaac Okoro jumped into the Cavs first unit against Detroit, with Sam Merrill taking over as the sixth man. Look for Okoro if in need of a low-end streamer, as he's averaging 11.3 points, 2.6 assists, and 2.0 threes on 44.4% shooting from deep in 25.2 minutes over his latest 10 showings. New York is giving up the third-fewest points per game (109.9).
Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell (knee) has been downgraded to out for Sunday's game versus the New York Knicks. Mitchell sat out Friday's win over the Detroit Pistons due to soreness in his left knee, and he's unable to go on Sunday as well. A first-round fantasy asset all year long, the 27-year-old perennial All-Star's last 20 games show averages of 29.0 points, 6.8 assists, 5.6 rebounds, 3.8 three-pointers, and 1.8 steals per contest. Tuesday's showdown with the first-place Boston Celtics is Mitchell's next opportunity to take the court. The Knicks are allowing the second-fewest DraftKings points to opposing point guards, but Darius Garland is the clear fantasy beneficiary of Mitchell's absence after burying a season-high eight treys with the keys to the offense all in his lap on Friday. Garland is averaging 23.9 points, 6.1 assists, 2.8 threes, and 1.4 steals through seven outings sans Mitchell this year.
Sacramento Kings guard De'Aaron Fox (knee) was a full participant during Sunday's practice session. Fox has missed two straight games and is currently considered questionable for Monday's game versus the Chicago Bulls. Davion Mitchell and Keon Ellis each started a game in the absence of Fox. Mitchell did little with his opportunity, but Ellis made the most of it with four steals and seven assists. That being said, Ellis appears to be the better streaming choice between the two if Fox is forced to miss this game.
Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (Achilles) is considered questionable ahead of Monday's game against the Los Angeles Clippers. He erupted for 46/16/6/1/1 line during Friday's win, so possibly he suffered an injury during that game. The Bucks will likely wait and see how Antetokounmpo feels closer to tip-off before making a final decision. His absence would probably mean a spot start for Bobby Portis. A move to the starting unit would be good news for the fantasy value of Portis. Fantasy managers will need to check back on Monday for another update.
Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso (hamstring) is listed as questionable ahead of Monday's game against the Sacramento Kings. This is concerning as the Bulls are already thin at the guard spot right now. The absence of Caruso would mean players such as Dalen Terry and Onuralp Bitim would see increased run. Andre Drummond registered 17 points and 26 rebounds when starting for Caruso on Wednesday. Fantasy managers should consider Drummond a strong streaming option with the Bulls banged up.