Whoa, look at the star power we’re bringing in today! On a jam-packed edition of the Razzball Basketball Podcast we recap news and notes from the last two nights of NBA action including some strong play from D’Angelo Russell. I then sit down with former NBA superstar and coach of the Texas Legends Nick Van Exel, and we chat some of his former teammates during his playing days and what his coaching strategy could mean for fantasy hoops if he coached an NBA team. We then play another edition of Higher/Lower, preview tonight’s games with our 30-Point Challenge picks, then wrap up the week at the movies. But that’s not all! You can now join us in the movies conversation by joining the Razzball league on Fantasy Movie League! Click on this link right here to join the private league (Razzball Nation only!), enter the password (rball), and try to build a better cineplex than my picks, 3rd Base During Pirates of the Caribbean. It’s a new season, so join us now and you’ll get a big shoutout if you can topple the Razzball league field. Join today!

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I wish I could be more excited about heading into an epic 2-week ASB showdown, but I’m in a little bit of a sports depression right now…  You know how we sometimes say we can be your fantasy therapists in the comments?  I need coddling, Razzball Nation!  Not only did the Panthers lose, but my injury-riddled team isn’t quite healthy enough to survive a drubbing by Anus.  That sounds all sorts of wrong!  Fairly quiet week on the wire, but here’s how week 15 went down in the REL:

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There were several quality match-ups coming into the week including 1v6, 4v5, and 7v9.  It could have been the kind of week that destroys dreams, crushes hopes, spoils milk.  Maybe not the last 1 so much, and really not the other 2 either since all 3 match-ups finished close.  After 9 weeks we finally have a couple of tiers of teams starting to develop.  There’s the top 4, the playoff teams, who have started to put some distance between themselves and the rest of the field.  Then there’s the top 9, the playoff contenders.  All 5 teams are capable of making the playoffs but each has an issue or two they need to solve first.  Finally there’s everyone else.  There might be one or two teams capable of making some noise but they are falling behind and need to make a simple decision.

To play for now or not, that is the question
Whether ’tis Nobler to hold your aging vets
The 3s and Assists of outrageous Fortune
Or to trade Arms against a Team of troubles

 

RAZZBALL ELITE LEAGUE

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4 weeks in = we’re roughly 20% through the fantasy regular season!  Crazy that we’re about that far already…  Where has the time gone?!  While 4 weeks does start giving you a sample of how your teams are doing, it’s also good to keep in mind your schedule.  I always play the top teams early in the REL, then get the rebuilding teams in the second half.  So before you start selling everything, be sure and check to standings and maybe the schedule just hasn’t been forever in your favor.  Here’s how week 4 went down in the REL:

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After a wild week of NBA action featuring a few injuries to some of fantasy’s top performers, owners are quickly trying to adjust to their league’s new equilibrium. As a Kevin Durant owner, I can personally attest to the struggle of making up for lost production while trying to stay competitive in a weekly matchup.

Despite all the planning, research, and strategy an owner can put into his team, fantasy ultimately comes down to luck, and the injury bug seemed to be biting in full force last week.

While some teams succumbed to rotten luck in week 3, the strongest teams managed to persevere to claim the top spots in the standings.

Check out how your teams stacked up in week 3 of the 2015-16 RCL Master Standings Table table, and here’s how the action went down in the third regular season week across our 22 RCL Leagues:

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It just took prime time to rejuvenate Derrick Rose!  After an utterly atrocious outing against the Hornets on Tuesday – and three straight games of single-digit scoring – it certainly looked like the injuries had maybe made Rose a below-average PG…  I just edited out about 3 flower puns from this open, NO ONE IS READING FOR BOTANY OR WHATEVER THE WORD IS FOR FLOWER-STUFF!  Is it horticulture?  SHUT UP ABOUT IT ALREADY!  That’s me yelling at myself.  And also venting some anger, because I wanted him to be poopy for one more week as I face him in REL, so of course he would have by far his best game of the season last night.  Rose looked pretty spry out there, shooting 12-25 for a nice popcorn 29/5/7 stat line.  But as always, his lines have thorny stems supporting the bloom (AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!), as he didn’t notch a trey or steal.  He’s got no treys and only two swipes though 6 games now.  Even Jarrett Jack is like, “is this really an NBA PG?!”  At the very least, Rose is keeping the TO in check and he looked pretty healthy last night.  I think he’s still hovering in that 80-100 range that he fell in ADP, but if anyone would buy last night’s game as he’s back to vintage Rose, you’re obviously selling.  I actually saw him dropped in an RCL, and I’m pending my waiver claim.  Of course I won’t get him at my #6 spot, and of course I could use PG depth.  I’ve luckily avoided Rose the past half-decade, but now my frustration with him is reaching Nate Robinson levels.  Waived like three days after being the opening night starter?!  Or maybe it’s a Pelicans issue, THE WORST RUN NBA FRANCHISE!  Aight, aight, I’ve taken my diazepam, I’m ready to mellow.  Thankfully NO didn’t play last night, or else I mighta needed to double my dosage…  Here’s what else went down yesterday in fantasy hoops action:

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Week 1 is in the books!  It’s great to be officially into the grind of the season, emphasis on grind after I had to completely remake the back end of my roster.  I’m hoping it’s more like True Grit than Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.  Damn you Tim Burton!  You will forever be dead to me for ruining a childhood favorite.  He’s the movie director equivalent of Nate Robinson.

If you’re new to Razzball, we take weekly look-ins every Monday into the REL Dynasty League (link below) to track the deepest of deep wires.  It’s a weekly FAAB with all pickups becoming $1 keepers, and a great way to track the wires in your deeper leagues.  I hope everyone had a great first week of action in their leagues this season, and may your deep dynasties prosper!

RAZZBALL ELITE LEAGUE

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Yikes.  After an injury-plagued 14-15 season where virtually every starter missed a good chunk of time, the injury bug hath reared it’s ugly head yet again for the Pelicans.  I need comfort!  Time to shame eat 50 beignets!

After Jrue Holiday‘s slow recovery from another stress reaction in his leg, the Pelicans plan to limit him to 15 minutes a game until January and sit him on back-to-backs.  Then Norris Cole suffered a high-ankle sprain a little over a week ago, and given an “up to 6 weeks” timetable.  And right when the Tyreke Evans buzz couldn’t get louder, we get hit with news on The Blindside (starring Sandra Bullock) that he had arthroscopic knee surgery and will be out 6-8 weeks.  The Pelicans need a new conditioning staff!  Hopefully this gets all the injuries out of the team’s system and we see 82 games of Brow…  Anyway, the Pelicans signed Nate Robinson late last week, and all the sudden he’s looking at starting minutes to open the season – starting when Jrue sits and playing a ton off the bench after Jrue’s 15 allotted minutes.  Lord help me, but I actually drafted him in the JB vs. Slim RCL last night…  All he needs to do is put it within 15 feet of Brow and he could fall into 5 assists with the upside for a few 3s and some points with low TO (18 Pts last night, but 0 AST and 4 TO – had 9 dimes previous 2 games with only 3 TO, TO isn’t usually an issue).  It’s like Jose Calderon, but with a few more minutes.  Ugh, I just threw up in my mouth a little with that comp though…  Here’s what else has gone down over the past few days in preseason action:

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rcl-basketball-logoThe regular season approaches — fewer than three weeks before our lives finally have meaning again! My RCL had a draft last weekend, and I wanted to share the results with all of you wonderful readers as a fascinating case study and (perhaps) cautionary tale! This was an excellent draft– I think all managers were drafting live, making some ballsy and brilliant picks. I’ve included a grade and a few words on each of their teams after my pick-by-pick blow-by-blow. Off we go!

[editor’s note – we still have leagues open to join the RCL fun, plus we need more leagues!  Hop over to the RCL sign-ups and start a league today!]

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I pounded the coffee, we live-podcasted the draft, and my hopes at the 15-16 REL title now dance in my dreams like sugarplums and Ricky Rubio’s face!  My favorite basketball league, I brought my limited chips to the table then went all-in on a rookie I have to stash…  Wahhhhh!  Hopefully other teams like their backend roster more than I do, and with an added IL spot this year, we have some early FAAB money getting spent on the wire.  Here’s how the draft and first round of FAAB went down in the REL:

RAZZBALL ELITE LEAGUE

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