Week 18 NBA Streaming Options: Damian Lillard’s Injury Brings New Options

For those looking for some shorter term fantasy options to help deal with struggling players or injuries, this is where you want to be. Streaming is a popular fantasy term that means you are looking for the best set of matchups in a short term basis. For leagues where you need to set a weekly lineup, this can come in handy. Injuries are always messing with our lineups, but that is what the waiver wire is for. Let us dive in to find the best weekly streaming options by position.

Note: With the All-Star break still lingering into Week 18, most teams are on two-game weeks. Chicago is the only team on a three game week. Orlando, New York, and Los Angeles Clippers have just one game. If you are setting lineups beforehand, I would look to replace those names with players with more games. 

Backcourt Streaming Options

Chandler Hutchison – SG, SF – Chicago Bulls

Chandler Hutchison has seen more minutes with the Kris Dunn injury. While Dunn is headed for a return soon, he isn’t projected to be back within the next three games. Hutchison has had a few big games against softer defenses, which is nice because he faces Phoenix, Charlotte, and Washington all in Week 18. He is also one of the few names who do have a three game week. Hutchison has had some scoring outbursts, with 16, 17, and 21 point games over the last five, and also the rebounds come and go. Over the past two weeks, he is averaging 12 shot attempts per game, and an 11-6-2 line with one steal per game.

Duncan Robinson – SG, SF, PF – Miami Heat

Duncan Robinson has been inside the top 100 in fantasy scoring over the last two weeks. The injury to Tyler Herro and Jimmy Butler missing a game has contributed to that. Robinson is averaging 34 minutes over the last seven games, and is averaging 15-3-3. If you are in need of some three pointers, Robinson is averaging 4.7 per game in that span. As mentioned with Crowder below, the Heat get the Hawks and Cavaliers on the schedule this week, which bodes well for his upside. Robinson also has multi-position eligibility.

Josh Hart – SG, SF – New Orleans Pelicans

Josh Hart ranks 59th in fantasy scoring over the last two weeks, and is shooting 46% from the field in that span with 2.2 threes made per game. He also has seven rebounds, three assists, and 1.2 steals per game. Hart will continue to see minutes, even with what should be a fully healthy Pelicans team once we return from the break. He is under 50% owned, and has a good matchup against the Trail Blazers and Golden State Warriors. Two weaker defenses. Hart gives you an option more so at shooting guard for this week.

Gary Trent Jr. – SG – Portland Trail Blazers

With the injury to Damian Lillard, this doesn’t come at a good time for a team desperate for wins. Everyone is going to have to pick up their game, and I am looking at two lesser names to scoop up. Gary Trent Jr. is one of them, who actually has been playing week of late. He had a few games where he couldn’t stop scoring but then scored eight total points against the grizzlies and Pelicans. Over the past two weeks he ranks 94thin scoring, averaging 2.3s made per game and 1.4 steals per game. Simmons is also a name to add in terms of the backcourt as he will get a tick up in minutes.

Frontcourt Streaming Options

Thaddeus Young – SF, PF – Chicago Bulls

Much like Chandler Hutchison, Thaddeus Young will have the only three game week advantage. He ranks 143rd over the last two weeks and is 50% owned. Young is averaging 32 minutes per game, and a 13-7-1 line with 1.8 steals per game. Young is a great source of steals, and brings some consistency with points and boards as well. The upside really isn’t there, but he won’t kill you in any one category. He is shooting over 50% from the field in the last two weeks. Matchups against Washington, Phoenix, and Charlotte are also a nice three game stretch.

Jae Crowder – SF, PF – Miami Heat

Jae Crowder has been excellent in Miami, averaging 18 and 7 with two steals per game. Looking at the schedule for this week, Miami has strong matchups against Atlanta and Cleveland. Two of the poorer defenses in the league. While I mentioned Crowder’s shot will fade a bit, that may not happen against the Hawks or Cavaliers given the success shooters have against them. Both teams rank bottom ten in defensive efficiency against opposing forwards. Crowder can also be picked up for a longer term, as the move to Miami isn’t going to depreciate his fantasy value.

Trevor Ariza – SG, SF – Portland Trail Blazers

Trevor Ariza has been tough to trust of late, but still ranks 106th in scoring over the past two weeks. He adds some steals, but will really need to pick up his play offensively. With Lillard out, there is usage to go around. There is a chance Simmons sees more minutes, but I would look for McCollum to play on the ball more. I also want to talk about Carmelo Anthony, who has seen a 26% usage rate with Lillard off the court, and averages 17.4 points per 36. Melo is more owned than Ariza of course, and if you have him on your bench, I would fire him up.

Rui Hachimura – SF, PF – Washington Wizards

Rui Hachimura is a long term add, but if you are in a shallower league, you can fire him away this week. The Wizards get Cleveland and Chicago, who are defenses we can easily target. Washington is also a high pace team that continues to generate a fair amount of fantasy production. Over the last two weeks, Hachimura is averaging 13-6-1. He is an efficient shooter, but doesn’t offer much three point potential. He also doesn’t average much defensive stats. So if you are in need of those more so, I would look at Young and Crowder.

Schedule Grid

TEAMW21W22W23W24W25W26
Atlanta Hawks343331
Boston Celtics434332
Brooklyn Nets424432
Charlotte Hornets433432
Chicago Bulls433332
Cleveland Cavaliers333432
Dallas Mavericks343322
Denver Nuggets433432
Detroit Pistons234332
Golden State Warriors343332
Houston Rockets334342
Indiana Pacers234432
Los Angeles Clippers334332
Los Angeles Lakers343432
Memphis Grizzlies343422
Miami Heat333432
Milwaukee Bucks334341
Minnesota Timberwolves343432
New Orleans Pelicans343332
New York Knicks334332
Oklahoma City Thunder333432
Orlando Magic334332
Philadelphia 76ers244332
Phoenix Suns234432
Portland Trail Blazers334322
Sacramento Kings243432
San Antonio Spurs344342
Toronto Raptors243442
Utah Jazz443422
Washington Wizards344332
  
Jason Guilbault has been writing and podcasting in the fantasy sports world for over five years. You can find his work at Daily Fantasy Cafe. He is an avid Tottenham fan, and follows the Boston sports teams. When he isn’t diving into stats, he is enjoying the outdoors or down at the local brewery.

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