There’s gotta be a hardcore Spurs fan in your league, or someone who appreciates the classics, or someone who doesn’t realize that Tim Duncan is 37 years old, or someone who doesn’t care, or, best of all, someone who has been hit hard by injuries and is in dire need of a big man.
Because if you find that dude, you want to offer Timmy D. to him right now.
Duncan has once again defied the odds with near-All-Star numbers. Yeah, he’s scoring a few points less, but his rebounds (9.8 per) and his blocks (around 2 bpg) are right where they have been the past few years.
While these numbers are all fine and dandy, the best power forward of all time is great trade bait because of what he’s been up to lately. Just last week he had a vintage, turn-back-the-clock game with a 24-17-2 at Memphis. After a bit of a rebounding slump, he posted three-straight games with double-digit boards, and just last night he snuffed four shots against the T-Wolves.
As mentioned above, with all the injuries out there, someone will be willing to give you something good for Duncan if you’ve been lucky enough to avoid the injury bug and can afford to part ways with him. And be sure to mention that whole “best power forward ever” line.
Here’s what else I saw down in the paint last week:
P.J. Tucker – Has been a nice source of rebounds from the coveted G/F slot all year, and is averaging 10 rpg over his last three. He had been in a scoring slump for quite a while there but came out of it with 17 against the Pistons on Saturday – he’s capable of this on the reg in Jeff Hornacek’s wild wild west, especially with Eric Bledsoe out.
Kris Humphries – Last week’s cover boy continued his strong play, gobbling up even more of the big man minutes available in Boston. Only now he’ s not only rebounding (14 on Friday against Golden State) but also blocking (three in each of his last two games). If he’s still out there, get him.
DeAndre Jordan – Is he the weirdest fantasy player ever or just a guy who does whatever it takes for his team to win? The day after Christmas he went four straight games scoring in single digits, then went off for 25. All the while he’s scraping at the immaculate ceiling of 20 rebounds. After his scoring explosion, he went back down to normal, but the onslaught of boards and blocks continued, culminating with SEVEN on Saturday against the Lakers to go along with 13 points and 10 boards. Big numbers aside he’s really just boards, blocks and FG percentage and that’s it. I’d deal him if you can.
Josh Smith – Were you invited to the Detroit Pistons’ Block Party in Philadelphia on Friday? Yeah, me nei- wait, what? You were invited? Damn, that’s pretty messed up Mo Cheeks! Well I heard Smith was the big party-meister, knocking back five shots to go along with 13 boards (and 22 points, and 7 assists, and 2 steals) and that Andre Drummond was a Spuds MacKenzie in his own right, rejecting six and pairing that up with a double-double. That’s OK, I couldn’t make it to the Block Party anyway. Yeah, that’s it. Sniff, sniff.
Ed Davis – Popped up again for the injury plagued Griz, going for 17-11-1 on Jan. 5 against Detroit and 10-17-3 on Friday against the Suns. Nothing to see here, keep moving.
Robin Lopez – Just a solid fantasy center and even better for the Blazers in real life. Good for the occasional big double-double (15-13-1 Saturday against Boston) and even when his stats get kinda bleh, his percentages are good enough to justify keeping him around.
Jan Vesley – Deep League Special! Had a nice three-game run of 6.3 rpg and 2.3 bpg during which he got about 20 minutes per game. Went back to stinking after that, but it might be a sign that Randy Wittman is getting the squeeze to play the 6th pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. I got a better idea: How about the Wiz finally admit this dude is a bust and cut him loose?
Kenneth Faried – I’d rather be, I’d rather be, I’d rather be with a Manimal! If you were lucky enough to take the plunge and pick him up when he was lingering on the wire a few weeks ago you savored his tasty 16-12-1 over the last four games. But are you buying it long term? I might toss him in a deal to tip the scales if it would get the job done.
Terrence Jones – Yes, he went nuts again on Saturday with 19-17-3 against the Wizards. Yes, you will overreact and pick him up again betting that the big breakout is finally here. And no, I wouldn’t bother.
Anthony Davis – Jrue Holiday has become the Kevin Bacon of the NBA. His injury affects so many people and teams both directly and indirectly (Ask Sixers’ fans about the Top 5 protected pick they got for Jrue last offseason). One such person is The Brow. Does it hurt him to not have his trusty sidekick Jrue running the point? Or does it help to have a guy like Brian Roberts in there instead, a guy who might not want or need to shoot as much and might be more willing to help Davis get his? One thing is for sure: It’s definitely better to have a guy who doesn’t have a broken bone in his leg passing you the ball as opposed to one who does, especially as you (you being Davis) are returning to your early season dominating form. Another thing is also for sure: There will be people in both camps, and if you can find one in the former, maybe you can pry Davis away in a mega-trade.
Elton Brand – Rocked what I’m going to christen a Donut Game going forward: Any game where a dude scores no points but has an otherwise decent game. Brand, once a 20 ppg scorer, had 11 rebounds and three blocks – but zilch points – in a big win against Houston. E.B.’s in the mix in Big D. and always worth a stream for either of our favorite statistical categories. But not much else!
Little Big Man of the Week: Shaun Livingston – On Saturday, Miami played Brooklyn and someone put up a line of 19-11-5-3 in a winning effort. Can’t decide what’s the most amazing thing about this: That the owner of this line wasn’t LeBron James, that Brooklyn won the game, or that the person who did notch these numbers was a man who’s played for nine teams in eight seasons. The zaniness is taken to a new level when you realize it was one of five games in a row in which Livingston had at least one block. Yes, he’s 6-7, but he was playing point guard. Impressive. Most impressive.