Fantasy 30: Key late-season rotation changes

The trade from the Grizzlies to the Raptors put a big dent in the fantasy hoops value of Marc Gasol, center, but he could shine the next few games. Mark Blinch/NBAE via Getty Images

The fantasy playoffs are here, and there's never a more important time to stay on top of everything happening in the NBA, from injury updates to rotation changes.

Here's a look at the most fantasy-relevant news and notes for all 30 teams around the league:

Atlanta Hawks: John Collins missed three games last week due to an illness, but he hasn't skipped a beat since returning to the lineup. The second-year big man has recorded three consecutive double-doubles, including a monstrous 33-point, 19-rebound effort Saturday against the Nets. Though a non-factor defensively, the highly efficient Collins is no worse than a high fourth-rounder heading into fantasy drafts next season.

Boston Celtics: Jayson Tatum (shoulder) sat out Monday's game and is a game-time decision for Thursday's contest against Sacramento. Jaylen Brown stepped into the starting lineup with Tatum out against the Clippers, chipping in 22 points, 7 rebounds and 3 steals, and he's one to consider if Tatum misses more time.

Brooklyn Nets: The Nets -- along with the Magic -- are the only teams in the league that play two games next week. Make sure to factor that into your plans if you expect to advance to next week, as guys such as D'Angelo Russell, Jarrett Allen, Caris LeVert, Spencer Dinwiddie and Joe Harris won't be as useful for the week beginning March 18.

Charlotte Hornets: Nicolas Batum (eye) was a late scratch for Monday's game at Houston, a situation that was far from ideal for fantasy managers like myself who had been counting on him and didn't have the opportunity to remove him from their lineups. Batum thinks he'll be able to return for Friday's game at Washington, but this is something to watch closely in the coming days, as Batum has been playing as many minutes as anybody while racking up points, rebounds, assists, steals and 3s.

Chicago Bulls: Ryan Arcidiacono has started the past two games as a fill-in for the injured Zach LaVine (knee), averaging 12.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game, but Lavine could return as soon as Friday's road game against the Clippers. And what a season it has been for the 24-year-old LaVine, who has established new career bests in scoring (23.8 PPG), FG percentage (46.8), rebounding (4.6 RPG) and assists (4.4 APG).

Cleveland Cavaliers: During the past three games, Brandon Knight has averaged 12.7 PPG, 3.7 APG and 2.0 steals in 25.3 minutes per game. Knight has started 12 of 13 games since joining the Cavaliers, his first real stretch starting since 2015-16 with the Suns, but if he's contributing assists and steals while chipping in as a scorer, he can be useful over the crucial final weeks of the fantasy season.

Dallas Mavericks: Any time a player the caliber of Luka Doncic mentions that he heard a pop in his knee, there is an immediate reason to be concerned; however, it appears the rookie escaped serious injury. He continued playing through the pain in Tuesday's loss to San Antonio, and it appears he will be available when the Mavericks head to Denver on Thursday. For what it's worth, Doncic is shooting an uncharacteristically low 39.1 percent in six games this month.

Denver Nuggets: Isaiah Thomas was abruptly dropped from the Nuggets' rotation Tuesday, receiving a DNP-coach's decision in the team's 26-point win over the Timberwolves. "It's never about Isaiah. It's never about any individual," Nuggets coach Michael Malone told The Denver Post. "It's about what I think is best for our team. And I made the decision to shorten the rotation, only played eight guys in the first quarter. And I'm going to continue to do that for the time being." Monte Morris has surprisingly beaten out Thomas in the rotation, logging 27 minutes Tuesday, and it's now safe to drop Thomas in all formats.

Detroit Pistons: Andre Drummond doesn't just lead the NBA in rebounding during the past month, he leads by a wide margin. His 16.9 RPG is more than 2.0 ahead of the next player on the list, Joel Embiid (14.8). The same two are ranked Nos. 1 and 2 in rebounding this season, with Drummond pulling down 15.3 RPG and Embiid at 13.6 RPG. Drummond also leads the NBA with 2.2 SPG during the past month.

Golden State Warriors: For those of you who are fortunate enough to make it to next week, be aware that the Warriors are the only team in the league with five games on the schedule for the week beginning March 18.

Houston Rockets: Eric Gordon is shooting the ball as well as he has all season, making 54.9 percent of his shots in five games this month, and he remains available in more than 56 percent of ESPN Fantasy leagues.

Indiana Pacers: Myles Turner is right there with New York's Mitchell Robinson as the league's top shot-blocker right now, and like Robinson, he isn't slowing down in that department. In fact, Turner has at least two rejections in 14 of his past 15 games, and he has recorded six or more blocks three times during that impressive span.

LA Clippers: Lou Williams became the NBA's all-time leading bench scorer this week, and there's a good chance he ends up putting some distance between himself and second place (Del Curry). Why? Because Williams is doing what he does best in the post Tobias Harris era in Clippers land, scoring 25.3 PPG during the past month. During that 12-game stretch, he has gone to the free throw line 8.5 times per game while shooting 85.3 percent.

Los Angeles Lakers: Rookie first-rounder Moritz Wagner teased fantasy managers everywhere with a spot start against the Celtics on Saturday and was extremely productive in 34 minutes, putting up 22 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists while adding a block and a steal. This is something to keep an eye on if the Lakers decide to shut down more players in the weeks ahead, because Wagner stands to be one of the big beneficiaries if that happens.

Memphis Grizzlies: While Marc Gasol's fantasy stock has fallen considerably since being traded to Toronto, the opposite is true of Jonas Valanciunas since joining Memphis. The veteran center has seen his minutes rise from 18.8 to 25.6, and the rest of his numbers have followed suit, with his scoring bumping from 12.5 to 18.5 PPG, his rebounding going from 7.2 to 8.8 RPG and his blocks up from 0.8 to 1.4 BPG. So much to like here, especially when you factor in how efficient Valanciunas is from the field and the free throw line.

Miami Heat: Josh Richardson was questionable for Wednesday's game against the surging Pistons because of right hamstring soreness. Keep in mind, though, that the 25-year-old wing played in all but one game last season and has yet to miss a game in 2018-19 while notching career highs in scoring (17.2 PPG), rebounding (3.5 RPG), assists (4.0 APG) and 3-pointers (2.3 3PG).

Milwaukee Bucks: After 11 games with Milwaukee, it's pretty clear that Nikola Mirotic isn't the same fantasy option with the Bucks that he was with the Pelicans. He has put up 11.8 PPG, 5.4 RPG and 2.3 3PG in 22.1 MPG since the trade, making him more of a Dario Saric-type of player. Keep in mind, he was at 16.7 PPG, 8.3 RPG and 2.7 3PG in 32 games with New Orleans this season.

Minnesota Timberwolves: Jeff Teague (foot) didn't play in Tuesday's loss to Denver, the latest disappointment in a season of disappointment for Teague. The 10-year veteran has put up a career-high 8.2 APG, but it's come at the cost of his scoring; his 12.1 PPG is the lowest since 2010-11, his second season in the league, and his 42.3 FG percentage is the lowest since his rookie season. Expect Teague to slide to the seventh or eighth round in next season's fantasy drafts.

New Orleans Pelicans: Without Jrue Holiday (abdomen) in the lineup, Elfrid Payton is taking over in the Pelicans' backcourt. The veteran point guard racked up triple-doubles in each of the past two games, going for 15 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists in a loss to Atlanta on Sunday then adding 14 points, 15 rebounds and 11 assists in a loss to Milwaukee on Tuesday. Holiday is expected to miss at least one more game, which makes Payton a good one to have in your lineup on Friday against Portland.

New York Knicks: Robinson has come back down to earth a bit lately, averaging just 7.0 PPG and 7.2 RPG during his past five games, but the high shooting percentage (66.7 FG percentage) and penchant for blocks (3.4 BPG) has remained constant. Incredibly, the rookie second-rounder has recorded multiple blocks in 16 games in a row.

Oklahoma City Thunder: The midseason addition of Markieff Morris hasn't made too big of an impact on the Thunder rotation, as the veteran has averaged just 17.1 MPG in 10 games with OKC, and now Morris is dealing with a neck injury that has him questionable for Wednesday. If he cannot go, it will mean a heavier reliance on Jerami Grant, who already has averaged 33.3 MPG during his past 10 games.

Orlando Magic: Terrence Ross sat out last Tuesday's against Philadelphia game due to Achilles soreness, but has shown no ill effects in the two games since. He went off for 22 points and made six 3s in a win over Dallas on Friday and followed that up with 15 points, three 3-pointers, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks against Memphis on Sunday. He remains a solid 3-point streaming option.

Philadelphia 76ers: Mike Scott has emerged as the primary big man off the bench for the 76ers, playing 23.9 MPG in the 14 games since coming over along with Harris in the trade with the Clippers. With this type of playing time, Scott becomes someone to consider if you're streaming for 3s; the veteran stretch-4 has averaged 1.9 3PG as a member of the 76ers.

Phoenix Suns: Rookie lottery pick Mikal Bridges ranks fourth in the NBA in steals during the past month, swiping 2.0 per game. With TJ Warren becoming a shutdown candidate in Phoenix, having not played since January, there's a good chance Bridges will continue to get around 27-28 MPG for the rest of the season, and as long as that's the case, he can be a helpful addition to fantasy rosters in need of steals.

Portland Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard (26.7 PPG, 48.1 FG percentage, 3.0 3PG) and CJ McCollum (25.7 PPG, 52.4 FG percentage, 4.2 3FG) are both scorching hot in six games this month, which has contributed to Jusuf Nurkic seeing his scoring dip to 14.8 PPG despite getting the same playing time since the arrival of Enes Kanter. Nothing major here, but something to keep an eye on during the rest of the way for fantasy managers who have Nurkic.

Sacramento Kings: Buddy Hield can help fantasy teams in a number of ways with all the scoring and 3-point shooting, but one area that he's hurting teams with right now is his poor efficiency. The rising shooting guard has made just 39.4 percent of his shots during his past 10 games, and he has an icy 36.4 FG percentage in five games this month.

San Antonio Spurs: Rudy Gay missed the past two games due to the flu, but he's expected to return to action for the Spurs' back-to-back games Friday and Saturday. The 13-year veteran has put up a career-high 51.2 percent FG percentage this season, cruising by his previous best of 47.1 percent set in 2010-11 with Memphis and tied last season in San Antonio.

Toronto Raptors: Serge Ibaka's three-game suspension due to the on-court altercation with Cleveland's Marquese Chriss is a big blow for those fantasy manager with Ibaka on their rosters, but the opposite is true for anyone with Marc Gasol. Since joining the Raptors, Gasol's playing time has been dependent on whether he or Ibaka starts, with the starter getting the lion's share of the minutes. With Ibaka set to begin his suspension Thursday, Gasol is in prime position to play 30-plus minutes a night and stuff the stat sheet like he did all those years with Memphis.

Utah Jazz: Don't look now, but Donovan Mitchell is on another hot streak. In five games this month, the second-year shooting guard has averaged 30.0 PPG on 44.2 percent shooting, chipping in 3.2 3PG to go with 4.0 RPG, 5.2 APG, 1.8 SPG and 1.0 BPG. Those numbers are worthy of a top-20 fantasy option the rest of the way, and his 37.0 MPG during the past 10 games is another reason to be bullish on the red-hot Mitchell.

Washington Wizards: Bobby Portis has become a big-time fantasy player in the 13 games since joining the Wizards, with his scoring rising from 14.1 to 16.2 PPG and his rebounding going from 7.3 to 9.4 RPG. Add in the bump in 3-pointers, from 1.2 to 1.9 3PG, and we're talking about a top-70 caliber fantasy option the rest of the way as the Wizards play a faster brand of ball.