Fantasy basketball tips and projections for Wednesday

Norman Powell has been hot of late and gets a nice matchup against the Lakers. Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

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What you need to know for Wednesday's games

After a wild Tuesday night that saw Max Strus channel Reggie Miller and Tracy McGrady with five 3-pointers in the final five minutes, including a game-winning 60-footer at the buzzer against the Mavericks, Anthony Edwards making a triumphant return from a sprained ankle, monster lines for Luka Doncic and Tyus Jones, a big win for the Celtics over the 76ers and a Deandre Ayton hand injury, we get a calmer night on Wednesday with just six games on the slate.

The New Orleans Pelicans, who may or may not have Zion Williamson (foot) and C.J. McCollum (ankle) available, will visit the Indiana Pacers for the early game on ESPN at 7:30 p.m. ET, Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks will visit the Toronto Raptors, and the Memphis Grizzlies will visit the Minnesota Timberwolves (Edwards will likely be questionable with a sprained left ankle).

The Cleveland Cavaliers will be looking to stay hot at Chicago after the Strus explosion last night, the Sacramento Kings will be in Denver for one of the games of the night, and then ESPN will have the battle for Los Angeles between the Lakers and Clippers in the late game at 10 p.m. ET.

Paul George (knee) has already been ruled out for this one for the home Clippers, and LeBron James is questionable due to a sore ankle as he continues to pursue his 40,000th point. And, in case you're wondering, I have LeBron hitting 40,000 points on Monday, March 4 in a home game against the Thunder because I'm guessing he'll miss one game before then. Let's hope it doesn't happen tonight against the Clippers. And for those wondering, yes, I am a little concerned about the knee of George, as he's set to miss his second straight game and isn't assured of playing Friday against Washington, either.

Wednesday's Stream Team

This segment nominates three key streaming options ahead of that day's action. A streamer, by our standards, is a player available in at least half of ESPN men's basketball leagues.

Bennedict Mathurin, SG/SF, Pacers (18.4% rostered in ESPN leagues): Mathurin has been one of the most inconsistent and frustrating fantasy players in the league this year, outside of a guy like Jordan Poole. Mathurin has displayed incredible bursts of talent and hot streaks along with mediocrity in between the greatness. But something may have clicked Monday night when he went bonkers with 34 points, nine rebounds, five assists, two steals a block and five 3-pointers on 11-of-16 shooting in a loss to the Raptors. Sure, he was helped by the fact that Tyrese Haliburton looked human on 2-of-11 shooting with nine points and seven assists, but I'm thinking that Mathurin can parlay this into another big game against the potentially banged-up Pelicans tonight.

Kelly Olynyk, PF/C, Raptors (12.4% rostered): Jakob Poeltl left Monday's game with a sprained left ankle, and while he has yet to be ruled out for Wednesday, my guess is he's not going to play. If that turns out to be the case, Olynyk could potentially start in his place and would surely see a ton of minutes either way. Olynyk has yet to have a huge game for the Raptors since being traded six games ago, but he has scored in double figures in three of them and has averaged 10.6 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.6 steals, 0.6 blocks and 0.6 3-pointers in five of those games, throwing out his seven-minute dud on Valentine's Day. He should be able to double those averages tonight if Poeltl is out, but he's not worth rolling with if Poeltl is going to play. I just have a hunch that Poeltl will be in street clothes tonight, so keep an eye on the news feed before deploying Olynyk.

Max Strus, SG/SF, Cavaliers (44.2%): Strus is probably already rostered in most ESPN leagues that are competitive, but in case he's available in your league, he's worth a close look after Tuesday's heroics. Strus hit 7-of-12 shots and 7-of-10 3-pointers for 21 points, four rebounds, four assists and two blocks, while also knocking down a 60-foot 3-pointer at the final buzzer that gave Cleveland a huge win over the Mavericks. He hit all five of his 3-point attempts in the final five minutes of the game and might be worth riding again tonight while he still has a hot hand.

Norman Powell, SG/SF, Clippers (7.8%): With George not playing again on Wednesday, Powell should be poised for another big opportunity. He is hot, with averages of 20.3 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 4.7 3-pointers over his last three games, two of which included George, and has a nice matchup against the Lakers tonight. He also had 17 points, five rebounds, two assists, two blocks and a 3-pointer the last time he faced the Lakers. Terance Mann (just 2.0% rostered) is also definitely worth a look tonight with George sitting this one out, as he has averaged 18.5 points, 9.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2.5 triples over his last two games.

Projections and Injury Reports

Fantasy projections powered by ESPN Analytics.* Projections assume all players who are listed as GTD will play. Injury aggregation by Rotowire.com. Players available in at least 50% of ESPN leagues are listed in italics.

New Orleans Pelicans at Indiana Pacers
7:30 p.m. Gainbridge Fieldhouse, Indianapolis

BPI Projection: Pacers in the highest-scoring game of the slate.

Injury Report:
Pelicans: CJ McCollum, (GTD - Ankle); Jose Alvarado, (OUT - Suspension); Dyson Daniels, (OUT - Knee)
Pacers: Aaron Nesmith, (GTD - Ankle); Doug McDermott, (OUT - Calf)

Pelicans projections:

Pacers projections:

Dallas Mavericks at Toronto Raptors
7:30 p.m. Scotiabank Arena, Toronto

BPI Projection: Mavericks in the 4th highest-scoring game of the slate.

Injury Report:
Mavericks: Dante Exum, (GTD - Knee)
Raptors: Jakob Poeltl, (GTD - Ankle)

Mavericks projections:

Raptors projections:

  • Scottie Barnes, SF/PF: 41.8 FPTS (21.0 pts, 7.8 reb, 6.7 ast, 1.3 blk)

  • RJ Barrett, SG/SF: 34.3 FPTS (20.7 pts, 5.1 reb, 3.4 ast, 1.9 3PM)

  • Immanuel Quickley, PG/SG: 33.3 FPTS (17.9 pts, 4.5 reb, 3.9 ast, 2.5 3PM)

  • Jakob Poeltl, C: 26.0 FPTS (10.5 pts, 8.8 reb, 2.6 ast, 1.3 blk)

  • Gary Trent Jr., PG/SG: 21.2 FPTS (11.3 pts, 2.9 reb, 1.2 ast, 2.3 3PM)

  • Kelly Olynyk, PF/C: 20.3 FPTS (7.3 pts, 4.6 reb, 3.4 ast)

  • Bruce Brown, SG/SF: 17.1 FPTS (7.6 pts, 3.2 reb, 1.8 ast)

Memphis Grizzlies at Minnesota Timberwolves
8 p.m. Target Center, Minneapolis

BPI Projection: Timberwolves in the 6th highest-scoring game of the slate.

Injury Report:
Grizzlies: John Konchar, (GTD - Thumb); Brandon Clarke, (OUT - Achilles); Luke Kennard, (OUT - Illness); Scotty Pippen Jr., (OUT - Back); Desmond Bane, (OUT - Ankle); Marcus Smart, (OUT - Finger); Ja Morant, (OUT - Shoulder)
Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns, (GTD - Personal); Kyle Anderson, (GTD - Hamstring); Jaylen Clark, (OUT - Achilles)

Grizzlies projections:

Timberwolves projections:

Cleveland Cavaliers at Chicago Bulls
8 p.m. United Center, Chicago

BPI Projection: Cavaliers in the 5th highest-scoring game of the slate.

Injury Report:
Cavaliers: Tristan Thompson, (OUT - Suspension); Ty Jerome, (OUT - Ankle)
Bulls: Torrey Craig, (OUT - Knee); Lonzo Ball, (OUT - Knee); Patrick Williams, (OUT - Foot); Zach LaVine, (OUT - Foot)

Cavaliers projections:

  • Donovan Mitchell, PG/SG: 48.7 FPTS (27.8 pts, 4.8 reb, 5.9 ast, 3.3 3PM)

  • Jarrett Allen, C: 34.9 FPTS (17.3 pts, 10.3 reb, 2.4 ast)

  • Darius Garland, PG: 31.9 FPTS (17.3 pts, 2.4 reb, 5.8 ast, 1.8 3PM)

  • Evan Mobley, PF/C: 28.5 FPTS (14.1 pts, 8.2 reb, 2.7 ast, 1.5 blk)

  • Max Strus, SG/SF: 24.2 FPTS (10.0 pts, 4.0 reb, 3.4 ast, 2.1 3PM)

  • Caris LeVert, SG/SF: 22.9 FPTS (10.8 pts, 3.1 reb, 3.7 ast)

  • Isaac Okoro, SG/SF: 15.5 FPTS (8.5 pts, 2.4 reb, 1.3 ast)

Bulls projections:

Sacramento Kings at Denver Nuggets
9 p.m. Ball Arena, Denver

BPI Projection: Nuggets in the 3rd highest-scoring game of the slate.

Injury Report:
Kings: De'Aaron Fox, (GTD - Knee); Sasha Vezenkov, (OUT - Ankle)
Nuggets: Hunter Tyson, (GTD - Finger); Vlatko Cancar, (OUT - Knee)

Kings projections:

  • De'Aaron Fox, PG: 47.8 FPTS (25.5 pts, 4.1 reb, 5.5 ast, 2.8 3PM)

  • Domantas Sabonis, PF/C: 44.4 FPTS (19.8 pts, 11.0 reb, 7.5 ast)

  • Keegan Murray, SF/PF: 28.0 FPTS (13.9 pts, 5.5 reb, 1.7 ast, 2.3 3PM)

  • Malik Monk, SG/SF: 27.9 FPTS (14.8 pts, 3.0 reb, 4.4 ast, 2.3 3PM)

  • Harrison Barnes, SF/PF: 22.3 FPTS (13.0 pts, 2.9 reb, 1.0 ast, 1.9 3PM)

  • Kevin Huerter, SG/SF: 22.3 FPTS (10.7 pts, 3.7 reb, 2.1 ast, 2.0 3PM)

  • Trey Lyles, PF: 14.3 FPTS (6.9 pts, 3.4 reb, 0.8 ast)

Nuggets projections:

Los Angeles Lakers at LA Clippers
10 p.m. Crypto.com Arena, Los Angeles

BPI Projection: Clippers in the 2nd highest-scoring game of the slate.

Injury Report:
Lakers: Anthony Davis, (GTD - Illness); Cam Reddish, (GTD - Ankle); LeBron James, (GTD - Ankle); Gabe Vincent, (OUT - Knee); Jarred Vanderbilt, (OUT - Foot); Christian Wood, (OUT - Knee); Colin Castleton, (OUT - Wrist)
Clippers: Paul George, (OUT - Knee)

Lakers projections:

Clippers projections: