February 9, 2014; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers point guard Kendall Marshall (12) controls the ball against Chicago Bulls small forward Mike Dunleavy (34) during the second half at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Fantasy Basketball: Kendall Marshall will start for Lakers, is a must-add

kendall marshall

Kendall Marshall will start for the Lakers on Thursday night (Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports)

The Los Angeles Lakers’ have announced that point guard Steve Nash is out, meaning Kendall Marshall will run the offense Thursday night vs. the Oklahoma City Thunder.  Fantasy basketball owners need to make sure Marshall isn’t on any waiver wires.

The news comes as no surprise, as Nash has dealt with many painful setbacks to his nerve root irritation injury.  The latest came in Tuesday’s game vs. the Utah Jazz.  Nash had to exit after playing just 17 minutes and he never returned after halftime.

Marshall stands to benefit the most from Nash’s absence.  Steve Blake has been playing well, but he too, is dealing with recurring pain in his surgically repaired elbow. While Blake will play, Marshall figures to be the main distributor vs. the Thunder — and for the foreseeable future.

Marshall was a huge part of the Lakers offense while Nash, Blake and Jordan Farmar were hurt.  The second-year pro put up averages of 11.9 points, 11.5 assists and 2.0 3-pointers during the month of January, which included nine double-doubles.

He’s not the most gifted of basketball players, but Marshall plays hard and has a knack for finding the open guy — something that is always beneficial to fantasy owners looking for help in assists.  He had a rough shooting night on Tuesday (3-of-13 FG), but still managed to drop seven dimes and snag three steals.  With Nash either sitting or sidelined the past two games, Marshall has played 34.5 minutes.

The Lakers are completely decimated by injuries, and with Nash, Farmar, Nick Young, and Jodie Meeks out, Marshall will get more than his fair share of opportunities to rack up fantasy stats.

Marshall is still available in 33 percent of ESPN.com fantasy leagues.

Tags: Fantasy Basketball Kendall Marshall Los Angeles Lakers

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