NBA Fantasy Start/Sit - Week 3 Lineup Decisions

NBA Fantasy Start/Sit - Week 3 Lineup Decisions

This article is part of our In-Season Strategy series.

The Cavaliers, Trail Blazers and Raptors all play just two games in Week 3, while 17 teams go four times. Sitting players who only go twice has its advantages, but fantasy managers still have to make smart decisions when figuring out who to start and who to sit, regardless of games played. 

Four Games: BKN, BOS, DAL, DET, GSW, HOU, IND, LAC, LAL, MIA, MIL, MIN, NOP, OKC, PHI, SAS, WAS

Three Games: ATL, CHA, CHI, DEN, MEM, NYK, ORL, PHX, SAC, UTA 

Two Games: CLE, POR, TOR

Here are five potential starts and five potential sits entering the second week of the NBA season. Just keep in mind that this is based on games played for the week. If you play in a rotisserie league, the number of games played each week may not matter in your format. 

Guards

Consider starting: Marcus Sasser, DET (10% rostered, 4% start)

Opponents: GSW, @MIL, PHI, @CHI

Not only is Sasser worth a look for his four games this week for the Pistons, but he's been playing well enough to be given consideration for a pick up in many leagues, despite his low rostership. The Pistons start Killian Hayes but Sasser has been better. He blew up for a season-high 22 points with three rebounds, four assists, a steal and four 3-pointers against the Suns on Sunday. He also had 19 points and five 3-pointers against the Pelicans on Thursday, and had six assists and four steals against the Blazers last Wednesday.

The Cavaliers, Trail Blazers and Raptors all play just two games in Week 3, while 17 teams go four times. Sitting players who only go twice has its advantages, but fantasy managers still have to make smart decisions when figuring out who to start and who to sit, regardless of games played. 

Four Games: BKN, BOS, DAL, DET, GSW, HOU, IND, LAC, LAL, MIA, MIL, MIN, NOP, OKC, PHI, SAS, WAS

Three Games: ATL, CHA, CHI, DEN, MEM, NYK, ORL, PHX, SAC, UTA 

Two Games: CLE, POR, TOR

Here are five potential starts and five potential sits entering the second week of the NBA season. Just keep in mind that this is based on games played for the week. If you play in a rotisserie league, the number of games played each week may not matter in your format. 

Guards

Consider starting: Marcus Sasser, DET (10% rostered, 4% start)

Opponents: GSW, @MIL, PHI, @CHI

Not only is Sasser worth a look for his four games this week for the Pistons, but he's been playing well enough to be given consideration for a pick up in many leagues, despite his low rostership. The Pistons start Killian Hayes but Sasser has been better. He blew up for a season-high 22 points with three rebounds, four assists, a steal and four 3-pointers against the Suns on Sunday. He also had 19 points and five 3-pointers against the Pelicans on Thursday, and had six assists and four steals against the Blazers last Wednesday. He's averaging 13.5 points, 2.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 2.5 steals, 0.5 blocks and 2.5 3-pointers on 62.5 shooting over his last three. He's clearly worth a roll of the dice with four games in Week 3, especially in deeper leagues. 

Consider sitting: Malcolm Brogdon, POR (89% rostered, 56% start)

Opponents: @SAC, @LAL

Brogdon has been a nice surprise for the Blazers since Anfernee Simons went down with a knee injury and should be rostered everywhere. And he's hot, coming off a game of 24 points, seven rebounds, 10 assists, three steals and two 3-pointers on Friday against Memphis. But with just two games this week against quality defensive teams, you can probably find a four-game player who can put up better numbers over the course of Week 3. The way Sasser is playing, I'd be tempted to bench Brogdon this week and take a flier on Sasser. 

Consider starting: Mike Conley, MIN (77% rostered, 37% start)

Opponents: BOS, NOP, @SAS, @GSW 

I'm not a big proponent of starting 36-year-old point guards on my fantasy teams, but Conley could be in line for a solid four-game week. He's scored in double digits in three of his five games this season and has had six assists in two straight games. He's averaging 12 points, 3.0 rebounds, 6.0 assists, a steal and 2.0 3-pointers over his last two games and is getting 27.5 minutes per night. He should continue to start for the Wolves, and four-game weeks are probably the only time I'd recommend using him this season. And this is one of them. 

Consider sitting: Shaedon Sharpe, POR (97% rostered, 62% start)

Opponents: @SAC, @LAL

Like his teammate Malcolm Brogdon, Sharpe has been solid for the Blazers' thin backcourt that features Anfernee Simons and Scoot Henderson, who are both hurt. Sharpe is playing very well though, so it might be tough to sit him right now, even with just two games. He's scored at least 20 points in four of his last five games and had a 29-point explosion last Wednesday at Detroit. He's averaging 20.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.0 steals, 0.8 blocks and 2.3 3-pointers on the season but with just two games this week, it would only take one dud to ruin his week. And, unfortunately, he's due to have an off night sooner or later. Weigh your options carefully before benching Sharpe, who has been a borderline stud. 

Forwards

Consider starting: Luguentz Dort, OKC (63% rostered, 28% start)

Opponents: ATL, CLE, @SAC, @PHX 

Dort is coming off his best game of the season when he had 29 points, five rebounds and six triples on 75% shooting against the Warriors on Friday night. He's averaging 14.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 0.7 assists, 1.2 steals, 0.7 blocks and 2.7 3-pointers on 55.6% shooting on the season and plays for a high-powered OKC offense. He should get hot and put up big numbers in at least two of his four games this week, and his field goal shooting has been lights-out. The lack of assists is a concern, but Dort makes for a sneaky four-game play this week, either way. 

Consider sitting: Max Strus, CLE (rostered 84%, 40% start)

Opponents: @OKC, @GSW 

After a hot start to the season, Strus has really cooled off over his last four games, averaging just 10 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.8 blocks and 1.3 3-pointers. That's a far cry from the 18.7 points, 9.3 rebounds and 4.3 triples he averaged over his first three games of the season and giving the week off with just two games makes sense in fantasy. 

Consider starting: Grant Williams, DAL (41% rostered, 27% start)

Opponents: @ORL, TOR, LAC, @NOP

Williams isn't a big game changer in fantasy but he has been an effective power forward for the Mavericks. He made some big plays on Sunday against Charlotte and has a nice four-game week lined up for Week 3. He finished Sunday's game with 18 points, four rebounds, three assists, a block and four 3-pointers, including three of them in the key fourth quarter. He's scored at least 13 points in all but one of his games this season, has hit at least one 3-pointer in all of them and has hit at least three triples in six of his seven games. Fire him up for Week 3. 

Consider sitting: OG Anunoby, TOR (55% rostered, 40% start)

Opponents: @DAL, @BOS 

Anunoby has scored in double figures in every game this season and had his best one against the Spurs on Sunday when he went off for 24 points, seven rebounds, four assists, a steal and seven 3-pointers in 38 minutes. He won't get to face the Spurs every night and should have a much tougher night at Boston this week. With just two games, managers should be able to find a more enticing option than Anunoby's two-gamer in Week 3. 

Centers

Consider starting: Dereck Lively, DAL (77% rostered, 36% start)

Opponents: @ORL, TOR, LAC, @NOP 

Lively looked great against the Hornets on Sunday night and came through with a double-double with 15 points, 14 rebounds and a block on 7-of-9 shooting in 32 minutes. He's been hit-or-miss for most of the season, but as long as the Mavs are facing a traditional center and he can stay out of foul trouble, Lively has quickly entrenched himself into the starting unit for Dallas. And he's only going to get better. 

Consider sitting: Deandre Ayton, POR (100% rostered, 75% start)

Opponents: @SAC, @LAL  

Entering Sunday's game against Memphis, Ayton has been pretty disappointing thus far, averaging just 11.2 points per game, but he's also averaging a career-high 13.7 rebounds, thanks to the 23 of them he had against the Raptors on Oct. 30. He's averaging just 1.5 assists, 2.3 steals and 1.0 blocks to go along with the paltry points and big boards and with just two games in Week 3, managers should be able to find a better option at center than Ayton. I'd rather roll the dice on Dallas center Dereck Lively with four games this week over Ayton. 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Steve Alexander
Steve 'Doc' Alexander has been covering hoops for more than 20 years and recently joined Rotowire after spending his entire career at NBC Sports.
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