Beast of the Night: Dwight Howard put up 13 points, 20 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, 4 blocks and 3 turnovers in 33 minutes of a blowout victory over the Rockets last night. He shot 71 percent (5-7) from the floor and 75 percent (3-4) from the free throw line. His scoring, rebounding and blocks are down this year, and his turnovers are higher compared to last season, but you know what you’re getting with Howard.
Trevor Ariza – 1-10 FG (10%), 4-4 FT (100%), 6 Pts, 7 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 TO; December has not been kind to Ariza, who is now 3-21 (14%) from the field in his last two games. He seems like a solid buy-low candidate.
Jameer Nelson – 6-11 FG (55%), 1-2 FT (50%), 2 3ptm, 15 Pts, 4 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Stl, 4 TO; A decent line in his second game back from knee surgery. He’ll probably have a clunker or two before the year’s over but he seems safe to start going forward.
Anthony Randolph – 5-14 FG (36%), 2-2 FT (100%), 12 Pts, 8 Reb, 2 Ast, 8 Blk, 1 TO; He started at center last night and did well with his 36 minutes of playing time. Randolph is still far from consistency and probably won’t start every game, but this is a good sign.
Stephen Curry – 6-13 FG (46%), 2-2 FT (100%), 3 3ptm, 17 Pts, 10 Reb, 7 Ast, 2 Stl, 2 TO; The rookie has had some great lines this month and seems to have a solid grip on his starting gig. Be aware that he’s playing heavy minutes lately and the rookie wall might not be far ahead.
Michael Redd – 8-21 FG (38%), 15-15 FT (100%), 1 3ptm, 32 Pts, 6 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk, 1 TO; A very fine night for Redd, who seems like he’s ready to contribute on a nightly basis now. Sell high if you’re still worried about his health.
Amar’e Stoudemire – 11-16 FG (69%), 13-16 FT (81%), 35 Pts, 14 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 4 TO; The points were a season-high and this was a big-time double-double from Stoudemire, but he hasn’t blocked a shot in three games. This is the story of his season.
J.R. Smith – 15-25 FG (60%), 1-6 FT (17%), 10 3ptm, 41 Pts, 2 Reb, 3 Ast; Come on, you had to see this kind of game coming. Congratulations if you bought low on him recently.
LeBron James – 14-30 FG (47%), 5-7 FT (71%), 1 3ptm, 34 Pts, 16 Reb, 10 Ast, 2 TO; This was his second triple-double of the season. Enough said.
Waiver Wire Appeal:
Yi Jianlian – 22 Pts, 4 3ptm, 8 Reb, 2 TO; What rust? He’s definitely worth a pickup if you have dead weight at the end of your bench.
Quentin Richardson – 11 Pts, 2 3ptm, 7 Reb, 1 Ast; His fragile health and inconsistency make him a tease, but he’s usually good for some threes and boards.
Joel Anthony – 8 Pts, 9 Reb, 5 Blk, 3 TO; He’s not good for much more than blocks and rebounds, but with Jermaine O’Neal likely out for a spell, Anthony could help teams with a weak frontcourt.
Udonis Haslem – 12 Pts, 11 Reb, 1 TO; He also benefits from O’Neal’s injury.
Jarrett Jack – 14 Pts, 2 3ptm, 5 Reb, 7 Ast; He’s filling in quite nicely for Jose Calderon, who isn’t expected back for a few more games.
Luc Richard Mbah a Moute – 11 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk; He’s getting decent minutes and is capable of putting up versatile stats.
Jerryd Bayless – 31 Pts, 2 3ptm, 2 Reb, 7 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk; With Brandon Roy possibly out for a few more games, Bayless should be a decent start in most leagues.
Juwan Howard – 12 Pts, 12 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 TO; While not good for much more than points and boards, Howard doesn’t have much competition for his starting center job at the moment.
Paul Millsap (concussion): he also needed 10 stitches for his mouth, check his status
Paul Pierce (knee): out for two weeks
Tyson Chandler (foot): out for at least a week
Andrew Bynum (illness): was sick recently and has an upper respiratory illness
Jermaine O’Neal (groin): hurt it early in last night’s game
Brandon Roy (shoulder): will have MRI today
Gilbert Arenas (thigh): probably not serious, monitor his status
Kobe Bryant (knee): landed awkwardly on it Tuesday, should be OK
Rafer Alston (back): day-to-day
Happy Christmas Eve – no NBA action tonight.
For Next Week:
4 games – CHA, CLE, IND, LAL, MIN, NY, OKC, PHI, SAC, SA
3 games – ATL, BOS, CHI, DAL, DEN, GS, HOU, MEM, MIA, MIL, NJ, NO, ORL, PHO, POR, TOR, UTA, WAS
2 games – DET, LAC
Throughout the season, be sure to leave your questions, comments, concerns, trade offers, roster problems and more in the comments below.
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