Patrick Williams, SF, Chicago Bulls
With starting PF Lauri Markannen suffering from injury, the rookie Williams, stepped up big time. He posted a 20-point performance and followed it up with 16 points. Markannen will be out for two to three weeks, so Williams’ opportunities will stay available. I expect him to capitalize as the Bulls have match-ups with the Washington Wizards and New Orleans Pelicans to start the week.
Kristaps Porzingis, PF/C, Dallas Mavericks
After returning from a torn meniscus, Porzingis has started slowly, but looked like he was on the right track with a few positive performances this past week. Porzingis is averaging 20 PPG, which is seven points down from his 2020 mark, but I think he will have a huge week. The Mavericks face the Minnesota Timberwolves, Atlanta Hawks, and New Orleans, all positive match-ups for big men.
Malik Beasley, SG/SF, Minnesota Timberwolves
Beasley has been killing it this season averaging a career-high 20 PPG with almost three three-pointers. He has been a great pickup for his fantasy managers. I expect that to continue, as Karl-Anthony Towns’ return remains in question, and the T-wolves have some positive match-ups in Week 8. They face the Charlotte Hornets and Dallas Mavericks, who will be happy to get into a shootout with the Timberwolves.
Delon Wright, PG/SG, Detroit Pistons
It feels like the Pistons’ starters are regulars in the negative match-ups, as Blake Griffin was in this column last week. The only consistent performer on Detroit is F Jerami Grant. While Wright has some breakout games here and there, Week 8 should be a tougher slate. The Pistons face the Boston Celtics and Indiana Pacers, two of the sturdiest squads in the league.
Jamal Murray, PG/SG, Denver Nuggets
Murray suffered a slight setback from knee soreness, but he should get back in the lineup soon. Returning from injury is definitely a positive for managers of Murray next week, however, as the Nuggets will have easier match-ups. This week, they face the Milwaukee Bucks, Cleveland Cavaliers, and the Los Angeles Lakers, all teams with defenses in the top half of the league. That’s if he actually gets to play as he’s currently listed as day-to-day.
Darius Bazley, SF/PF, Oklahoma City Thunder
Bazley has been a favorable add-drop throughout this fantasy season, and he helped a lot of teams this past week as the Thunder were somewhat depleted. Bazley offers help in the points, rebounds, and blocks categories. However, the Thunder have a tough Lakers back-to-back series on the horizon, so Bazley will likely suffer.