NBA Fantasy: Starter/Sit Guide for Week 23

Atlanta's De'Andre Hunter Averaged 16.5 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists over his last two starts.

As we continue to move toward the end of the regular season, this makes for an important week. Fortunately, we have plenty of teams on the four-game schedule, meaning there's no shortage of lower-listed candidates to consider at every position for streaming opportunities.

Each week, we aim to highlight a pair of starting candidates for your fantasy rosters that could be framed as some of the toughest calls of the week, typically focusing on players with a 50% starting or roster rate. Or less in the Yahoo leagues. In an effort to maximize opportunities for production, we typically develop players with four-game weeks.

Likewise, we'll be spotlighting a seed candidate at each position who wouldn't normally make your bench, often with a focus on players with less game time in the coming week.

Teams with four games: Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma City, San Antonio Spurs, Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards

Teams with three games: Boston Celtics, Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, New Orleans Pelicans, Orlando Magic, Phoenix Suns, Portland Trail Blazers, Toronto Raptors

Without further ado, let's examine some of the tough start/sit results for Week 23:


Guards

Start: Vasilije Micic, Hornets

29% listing rate

Mysic looks set to start another week because of LaMelo Ball's ankle injury, which could sideline the star guard for the rest of the season. The 30-year-old has handled his starting opportunity well so far, even if it was a bit of a bummer against the Hawks on Saturday. Mysic is averaging 15.5 points (on 50.9% shooting), 5.2 assists and 2.7 rebounds over his last 10 games, and Charlotte can project similar numbers as he begins a four-game week.

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Start: Alex Caruso, Bulls

45% opening rate

Caruso is dealing with a minor ankle sprain for the Bulls' upcoming four-game schedule, but is expected to continue playing. He averaged 14.5 points (on 48.4% shooting, including 51.4% from 3-point range, including 51.4% from 3-point range), including 4.8 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals in 33.5 minutes over his last six games, especially late. Caruso's ability to contribute across the stat sheet, especially to prop up the steals type, could prove invaluable and help offset occasional drops in scoring due to the high-usage players he shares the floor with.

Please consider further: Three Men, Hornets (21% opening rate)

to sit: Jrue Holiday, Celtics

51% initiation rate

Holiday has already missed 4 games with a shoulder injury suffered in Monday's game against the Hawks. He only has two potential games this week, and with Holiday averaging 10.5 points, 5.5 assists, 3.3 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks in 12 games currently absent, he's a fairly easy sit decision.


Forward

Start: De'Andre Hunter, Hawks

40% starting rate

Jalen Johnson will be out until late next week with a sprained ankle, meaning Hunter is in line for another full start. The fifth-year forward is averaging 16.5 points, 2.5 rebounds and 2.0 assists in his first two turns with the first unit in Johnson's absence. Hunter is shooting a career-best 40.2% this season, and with Trae Young (finger) out for the next four games, Hunter should have plenty of opportunities to put up strong offensive numbers.

Start: Rui Hachimura, Lakers

36% listing rate

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Hachimura has gotten into an impressive rhythm of late as a strong source of extra scoring, despite sharing the floor with future Hall of Famers, as he averaged 16.3 points (on 58.7% shooting, including 40.0% 3-point shooting), 3.9 rebounds. and 1.4 assists per game over his last eight contests. The big man's production in floor spacing is an element of risk because it's so score-dependent, but Hachimura seems to have reached a consistency recently that should help alleviate some of those concerns with a full schedule on his docket.

Please consider further: Jeff Green, Rockets (2% listing rate); Georges Niang, Cavaliers (16% listing rate)

to sit: Cameron Johnson, Nets

75% listing rate

Johnson has already been ruled out of Monday's game against the Raptors with a sprained leg entering the Nets' four-game bye week. At least a second absence against the Wizards on Wednesday isn't out of the question given the nature of the injury, which means Johnson has very little chance to contribute this week.


centers

Start: Nick Richards, Hornets

38% initiation rate

Richards' production has been up and down of late, but when he's been good, he's been very good. The big man has five double-doubles in the last eight games, and despite three single-digit scoring efforts in that span, he's still averaging a solid 9.0 points and 11.3 rebounds per contest over the entirety of the sample. Richards' only other mentions outside of points and boards have come in the form of occasional blocks, but despite the limited versatility of his stat lines, he stands as a viable option as a starter in a four-game week.

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Start: Trace Jackson-Davis, Warriors

25% starting rate

Jackson-Davis did a solid job last week as a starting prospect, averaging 11.8 points, 7.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 2.3 blocks and 1.0 steals in 26.5 minutes per contest over his four games. While his scoring was down — as was the case in the last two games of the week — he made up for it with a 10-rebound effort and multi-steal tallies in one of those contests. Jackson-Davis is seeing mid-20s and more minutes despite his bench role, and that level of opportunity should continue during another full schedule for the Warriors.

Please consider further: Marvin Bagley, Wizards (35% listing rate), Richan Holmes, Wizards (14% listing rate)

to sit: Jalen Duran, Pistons

75% initiation rate

Duran heads into a three-game bye week with the Pistons already missing two games with a sore back. He's in danger of missing the third Monday night against the Knicks due to injury, and he can only make a couple of contests to work on the scoring period. Duran is a valuable resource for scoring and rebounding when he's on, but the risk outweighs the reward this week.

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