UPDATE: March 31 — Brown is being listed as available to play in Wednesday’s game vs. the Mavericks. Brown was held out Monday vs. the Pelicans due to a hip injury. He’ll slide back into the starting lineup in place of Grant Williams.
Update: Robert Williams (illness) has been ruled out vs. the Mavericks. So Grant Williams could stick in the starting lineup at center rather than at forward.
UPDATE: March 30 — Brown is being listed as questionable for Wednesday’s game vs. the Dallas Mavericks. Brown was held out of Monday’s loss to the Pelicans. The Celtics started Robert Williams and Grant Williams vs. NOLA. Fournier came off the bench and went 0-of-10 from the floor and 0-of-5 from beyond the arc.
Boston Celtics SG Jaylen Brown has been ruled out for Monday’s game vs. the New Orleans Pelicans due to a hip injury. Brown scored 25 points and played 30 minutes in the Celtics’ win over the Oklahoma City Thunder over the weekend. Boston has won two games in a row and has a four-game schedule this week heading into April. This could be a chance to get Brown some rest. The Celtics already announced Evan Fournier (health protocols) is questionable to make his team debut Monday.
Update: Evan Fournier is available to make his team debut Monday vs. the Pelicans.
The Celtics have dealt with a lot of injuries this season but have also under performed. With Brown sidelined, the Celtics should start Kemba Walker and Marcus Smart in the back court with Jayson Tatum and Robert Williams in the front court. Boston doesn’t have much depth after getting rid of both Daniel Theis and Jeff Teague at the deadline. If Fournier can play, he should slot in at SG with Smart at SF and Tatum at PF. Either way, we should see a pretty tight rotation from Brad Stevens tonight. Semi Ojeleye is also sidelined otherwise he’d be the likely candidate to start.
With Brown being out and the Celtics thin, this is a good spot to smash the Pelicans at +3 on the road. If Fournier isn’t ready to come back, the Pelicans have a major advantage over the Celtics with Zion Williamson down low. Even if Fournier can play, who knows how many minutes he’ll get in a new system for a new team in his debut. The Pelicans enter this game having won three of four games, including victories over the Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks.
With Brown sidelined, Tatum ($8,600) becomes a very strong tournament play at this price. The Celtics can’t really afford to keep losing games. Something’s gotta give and Tatum should get all the minutes and usage he can handle tonight. The only concern I’d have is Tatum trying to contain Williamson all game. Walker ($6,800), Robert Williams ($6,700) and Smart ($6,100) aren’t bad mid-range GPP options either. All three should see over 30 minutes and the Pelicans aren’t a strong defensive team, especially without Lonzo Ball (hip), who is questionable.
Grant Williams ($3,400) isn’t a bad value option if the Celtics don’t want to give more minutes to Moritz Wagner. I can also see Luke Kornet ($3,100) being an OK value option if Fournier remains out. The Celtics really don’t have much of a choice at this point. Williamson at $8,800 would be a prime target against a small lineup. Nickeil Alexander-Walker ($5,800) makes sense as a value on NOLA if Ball remains sidelined.