Throughout another disappointing season, the Chicago Bulls have been ravaged by injuries. A rare bright spot for Chicago, however, has been the recent emergence of rookie scoring force Coby White, who on Sunday became just the second Bulls rookie ever -- joining some guy named Michael Jordan -- to deliver consecutive 30-point games.
In a rare victory, over the Wizards, White produced 26 of his 33 points in the first half in the process of becoming the first NBA rookie with at least 30 points in consecutive games off the bench since the league officially began tracking starters in 1970-71. In the Bulls' previous game (a loss to the Suns over the weekend), White also delivered 33 points and became the first rookie in league history to make as many as seven 3-pointers off the bench in multiple games.
The absence of guard Kris Dunn with a knee injury (likely out for the rest of the season) combined with the Bulls' decimated frontcourt places White in a uniquely busy role off the bench for a rookie guard. However, he has a rare ability to score in bunches with a variety of deep step-back shots. White has become a fun fantasy value late in the season. As of Monday morning, White is still available in 70% of ESPN leagues.
Dejounte Murray, San Antonio Spurs: 0 points (0-7 FG), 3 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 TO
On the losing side Sunday, Washington's Beal scored 53 points -- good for the second-highest total in a loss in Wizards franchise history. Only Earl "The Pearl" Monroe, with 56 points in a 1968 defeat to the Lakers, ever did better.
Saturday night, Atlanta's Collins delivered his second career performance with at least 35 points and 15 rebounds, joining franchise legend Dominique Wilkins as the only Hawks players with multiple 35-and-15 games in the past 30 seasons. Rookie Cam Reddish earned a start for the Hawks and produced 20 points. The Duke product now has at least 16 points in three consecutive games, while flashing a helpful steal rate.
McCollum established a new career best with his 12 dimes against a feisty Detroit team on Sunday night, becoming just the fifth Trail Blazers player ever with at least 40 points and 10 assists in a game. Carmelo Anthony, meanwhile, tallied 32 points in his first 30-point outing since February 2017.
In the loss to the Blazers, Detroit's Christian Wood was awesome off the bench with 26 points and nine rebounds. The journeyman seems to have found a home with four 25-point performances for Detroit this season. He entered the season with just two such outings in his career. Pistons combo guard Bruce Brown couldn't find his shot on Sunday but was still effective with 10 rebounds and remains a key free agent to consider.
Kemba Walker missed the Celtics' epic showdown with the Lakers on Sunday, marking his second straight absence with knee soreness. Tatum, however, picked up the scoring and became the youngest player in Celtics-Lakers rivalry history with at least 40 points and the first player to score at least 40 points in the rivalry since Kobe Bryant did so back in January 2011.
Both D'Angelo Russell and Karl-Anthony Towns were absent from Minnesota's lineup last night in a loss to Denver. Since coming over from the Nuggets at the deadline, Malik Beasley has been an exciting scoring force for the Wolves. However, it was telling to see guard Jordan McLaughlin be the one to shine with Russell ailing -- to the tune of 15 points and 10 dimes. Beasley is still a free agent in almost 40% of ESPN leagues, while McLaughlin is rostered in just 5.7% of leagues as of Monday morning. He becomes interesting if Russell misses any more time.
After being waived by the Pistons, Markieff Morris has now officially joined the Lakers, as the team released DeMarcus Cousins to create room for the forward. Morris won't develop much fantasy value for the Lakers but could serve to limit Kyle Kuzma's touches and minutes.
Injuries of note
The Bucks have ruled out Brook Lopez from Monday's lineup against the Wizards, but it appears that the team is taking the opportunity to offer him rest during a back-to-back scenario.
The 76ers not only suffered another sizable loss on the road by getting drubbed by the Bucks on Saturday evening, the team also lost Ben Simmons to a disconcerting back injury and saw Tobias Harris incur a knee contusion. Simmons has been ruled out for Monday's matchup with the Hawks and we await more information on his long-term status. Meanwhile, Harris is doubtful to suit up.
Stephen Curry has been cleared for contact and is eyeing a return to action on March 1, per ESPN's Nick Friedell.
Analytics advantage for Monday
New Philadelphia acquisition Alec Burks sees his fantasy points spike whenever Simmons and Harris are missing from the floor. He has a team-best surge of 15 fantasy points (using DraftKings' scoring key) per 36 minutes in that scenario. That makes Burks a fine streaming option tonight, while DFS lineups can consider using Josh Richardson, who enjoys a team-high 5.5% spike in usage rate with that duo absent.
Top players to watch on Monday
Devin Booker and Donovan Mitchell meet on Monday evening in a battle of young All-Star combo guards. The Suns have allowed the sixth-most PG fantasy points per game this season on DraftKings. Utah has allowed the 14th-most points per game to the position, signaling that both high-usage stars could excel in competition tonight.