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The misadventures of JB and Slim will not be shown today at its normally scheduled time due to Slim’s sudden disappearance into da bush. Instead we proudly present our D-League extravaganza.  A showcase of the talent currently being developed in the minors.

Pierre Jackson – PG – Idaho Stampede (NOP) – After transferring to Baylor from Southern Idaho, Pierre quickly proved he was a D1 talent.  In 2 years, Pierre twice achieved All-Big 12 Second Team honors with averages of 16.5 points and 6.5 assists.  With the 42nd overall pick Jackson was drafted by Philadelphia and then dealt to New Orleans in a draft day trade.  After barely playing in the summer league and not seeing any minutes in the preseason Pierre began his professional career in earnest for the Idaho Stampede.  Ya know Vern, through 8 games Pierre is averaging 30 points, 5.0 assists, and 2.4 steals to go with an unwieldy 5.0 turnovers, good enough to be twice named performer of the week.  Jackson doesn’t have a direct route to playing time and needs to get the turnovers in check before he steps foot on an NBA court.  There is a ton of talent here though and with a trade or injury Pierre could be given an opportunity this year, uh huh oui oui!

Seth Curry – PG/SG – Santa Cruz Warriors (UFA) – We all know Seth’s brother Massaman Curry, now that’s a spicy curry!  Seth’s numbers at Duke were more mild than his brothers collegiate numbers and Seth somehow went undrafted.  He was invited to training camp with Golden State but failed to see much time on the court during the preseason and was waived.  Now an unrestricted free agent Seth has played extremely well in the D-League.  With averages of 22.5 points and 7.8 assists Seth has received a few invitations to try out for injury riddled teams, unfortunately his 4.0 turnovers shows he still has some learning to do.  As a combo guard who’s seeing the majority of his D-League minutes at PG, Seth should be able to find a team and see an NBA court this year.

Dewayne Dedmon – PF/C – Santa Cruz Warriors (UFA) – Looks like we have a late bloomer on our hands here.  Dedmon did very little at USC, left after his junior year, went undrafted, but managed to raise a few eyebrows with his limited preseason play for Golden State.  Unable to find minutes for the big league club the Warriors sent him to the D-League and he has since been released and is now an unrestricted free agent.  Through 6 D-League games Dedmon has averaged 16.8/16.3/1.5/1.7/3.2.  Yep, 16 boards per game.  With the way he’s playing and still only 24 years old, Dedmon should get an opportunity in the NBA before too long.

Ryan Kelly – PF – LA D-Fenders (LAL) – There was never a debate about Ryan Kelly’s ability, he was a 5 star recruit out of high school by anyone’s account.  Nagging injuries hurt his play and ultimately decimated his senior campaign thus causing Kelly to fall to Lakers with the 48th overall pick.  In the early going Kelly has bounced back and forth between the Lakers and the D-Fenders.  Although he is yet to contribute much to the NBA squad, Kelly has put up some gaudy numbers in the D-League.  In 5 games he’s averaged 25.2/7.6/3.8/1.6/1.4.  He’s not going to be that kind of NBA player but as a stretch PF with the ability to knock down 3′s in bunches and get a few blocks he could be a helpful fantasy player.  I could see his minutes continue to rise as he fits nicely in D’Antonis system.

Malcolm Thomas – SF/PF – Austin Toros (SAS) – Thomas is the 1st D-League call up this year that’s caused me to take notice.  How about some accolades for a minute.  In his junior and senior years he was on the Mountain West All-Conference Second Team and garnered an All-Defensive Team nod as a senior.  Thomas goes undrafted and spends the year in the D-League.  How did he do?  He was awarded All-Defensive 1st team and All D-League 1st team and was called up for a cup of tea with the Spurs.  Last year Thomas played all over.  He played in the Isreali league, the D-League, and even a few games for both Golden State and Chicago.  Chicago gave him 3 summer league games and he played well averaging 11/15.  After 4 D-League games the Spurs had seen enough and with averages of 26.5/13.0/2.5/1.5/3.3 while shooting 62% from 3-point land it was obvious Thomas had graduated from the D-League.  While minutes can be hard to find in San Antonio I think Thomas works his way into a bench role sooner rather than later.  With his defensive prowess, ability to hit the 3, and plus rebounding he could be a valuable fantasy asset.

James Johnson – SF/PF – Rio Grande Valley Vipers (Mem) – Finally a fantasy relevant player.  A few years ago Johnson was a valuable player in fake basketball.  In the ’11-’12 season at the ripe old age of 24 years old Johnson managed 9.1/4.7/2.0/1.1/1.4 in 25 minutes for the Raptors.  Memphis is getting crushed by injuries right now.  Quincy Pondexter, and Tony Allen have missed time.  Now Tayshaun Prince, and Mike Miller are hurting.  As far as healthy wing players goes that leaves only the newly signed James Johnson and 2nd round pick Jamaal Franklin.  I  like Jamaal Franklin quite a bit but he’s no where near ready.  I think James Johnson is about to see significant playing time and hopefully showing us there are waiver adds currently biding their time in the minors.

  1. Shaft says:
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    Not D-League related, but with the rockets choosing not to trade Asik, what do you think happens with T. Jones? Are they going to give the twin towers experiment another go? What do you think happens to his mins? Thanks, SLim!

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Shaft: No worries. I will attempt to answer all. I think Terrence Jones outlook hasn’t changed much. 24-32 minutes, the large range due to competition from Casspi. The 2 center approach didn’t fit the Rockets scheme at all. I think we can safely say that is over. I don’t however think an Asik trade is off the table. That Houston GM, Daryl Morey, has been doing a lot of posturing over the last few days/weeks. I have very little faith that he’s telling us the truth.

      • Shaft says:
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        @Slim: Agreed! You’re the man.

        • Shaft says:
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          @Shaft: Unrelated follow up, but with the news Kobe’s out six weeks with a fractured knee, you buying any of the lakers? Also, think it’s worth sending a low ball offer for Kobe and stashing him for 6 weeks? Or is he going to be on and off the court the whole year? Bottom of my bench is T jones, Wilson Chandler, Henson and Harris (so not too shabby). You think i should send one of those guys for Kobe?

          • Shaft says:
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            @Shaft: Should probably mention its 10 team. h2h 8 cats. Hence why its soooooo shallow.

            • Slim

              Slim says:
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              @Shaft: Nah that’s too shallow a league to wait that long. Just using temporary waiver guys will probably get you the same stats without having to wait till February.

              I’m not buying anything D’Antoni is selling if I can avoid it. When
              Farmar returns I guess he’s worth a look with Blake and Kobe out. I’ve never been a fan though and I think his value will be fleeting. In a 10 teamer you will eventually find better. Nick Young and Jodie Meeks should remain decent streaming options.

              • Shaft says:
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                @Slim: I’ve been very reluctant to grab brandon knight since he can’t shoot his way out of a paper bag. But after tonight I don’t think I can hold out much longer. 6/20 is some serious heartburn but the rest of his line was absurd. Drop T. jones for him? JB says give TJ one more chance tomorrow and I’m inclined to do so (especially given his 5 games next week) but I’m worried knight will be gone come morning. Tell me what to do haha.

                • Shaft says:
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                  @Shaft: sorry to keep blowing you up, just heard the news about bro lo. Who do you like better as a replacement: sully, blatche, Garnett, wright, hill or McBob (out of position assists make him interesting but not much else)? 8 cat H2h

                  Also, I want to float an offer for JV or Gortat. You think any combination of Wilson chandler/ t jones / Lin / korver could get it done? Obviously it’s dependent on the other sides needs, just curious.

                  • Slim

                    Slim says:
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                    @Shaft: I would stay away from Garnett and Hill. I’m not sure Wright will get the minutes the rest are already getting. I don’t like the lack of steals and blocks from Sullinger. McBob and Blatche are both solid pickups. Scoring vs Assists. That’s a team need question. If your replacing Lopez then it’s probably not assists you need the most. I would pickup Blatche…

                    Wilson Chandler has really good value right now. He should get one of them by himself. Korver + Lin or Jones should get one without too much trouble.

  2. Jonas says:
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    Would you trade Ricky Rubio for Deron Williams?

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Jonas: I have zero and I do mean zero trust Derons ankles will hold up all year. For me that’s reason enough to avoid him. I know Rubio scoring in single digits and not shooting well is frustrating but those steals can not be made up for and the low FG attempts means his FG% really isn’t all that hurtful.

  3. Jake VZ says:
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    Hey Slim would you trade Gortat, W Chandler, and B Lopez for T Chandler, Lee, and Mayo? We have two REB categories and a DD category

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Jake VZ: I’ve got Gortat and Tyson about the same. Mayo vs Wilson, I favor Wilson significantly. DLee vs Brook favors DLee by a fair amount with those extra categories. It’s really close… but I would keep Gortat/Wilson/Brook. If you think you need the help in the rebounding/DD cats then I don’t mind the trade but overall I like what you currently have is a little better.

  4. bryan says:
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    I am in a total points ESPN league with 10 categories and 12 teams.
    I am middle of the road in 3 pointers made and points
    I am strong in steals, assists, assist to turnover ratio, and FT%.
    I am weak in Rebounds, Offensive Rebounds, Blocks, and FG%.

    I was offered D. Jordan and D. Favors for D. Nowitzki….I am not sure if I should accept it?
    Jordan and Favors would help in my categories I need but also hurt my strong one of FT% (where dirk excels in…not to mention his overall game).

    What do you think?

    Thanks in advance!

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @bryan: That’s a pretty nice haul… Dirk is playing like a 1st rounder and deserves to be traded as such. You get so much better in those 4 categories your lacking that I would say go for it. Several caveats though… You have to drop someone and that could be a killer. In any 2-1 like that I think it has to be considered as a 2-2 trade. The loss in FT% is devastating but that’s just one category. The more categories you play with the less important any one category becomes. Losing those 3′s without replacing any is another minor issue. I think it means the guy you would drop needs to not be a 3-point guy. Hmm… that wasn’t too convincing was it? But I still think I would do it assuming the caveats are manageable.

  5. Kevin says:
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    Hey Slim.

    Check this for me: curry/dirk for my bledsoe/dwight?

    I do need help on my 3s and FT%. Should I take the bite? give some to get some, right?

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Kevin: Fo Sho! That’s an easy one. Did he offer it to you? If I were him I’d be looking for a lot more. If you offered it and he wants more then you should be willing to give a little more and still get it done.

      • Slim

        Slim says:
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        @Slim: Just to be clear. U will be getting Steph Curry and Dirk is how I read that.

        • kevin says:
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          @Slim: Hey Slim. That’s right. I would be getting curry and dirk.

          It really does look like an obvious yes, but I had to run it by you guys because it felt too good to be true. My league is very picky (too picky if you asked me)

          i don’t mind giving up one big man because my anthony davis is back into action. which of those guys do you think sound most fair for the trade without me losing so much? robin lopez, jordan hill, valanciunas, or favors? Thanks in advance, Slim.

          • kevin says:
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            @kevin: hey slim. in lieu of things. i ended up trading my bledsoe and dwight for westbrook and dirk.

            just to be fair and not veto-worthy, i dumbed down the trade. as much as i wanted curry, i’ll live with a deal for westbrook and dwight. heh.

            • kevin says:
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              @kevin: *westbrook and dirk.

              • Slim

                Slim says:
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                @kevin: I still think you got a great deal and possibly the 2 best players. I hate having to worry about vetoes. If both sides agree then who am I to say the trade won’t help both managers. I have enough teams to worry about without having to think about all of my opponents teams. …End Rant.

  6. AJ says:
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    Gortat was dropped would you drop R.lopez or Jonas V for him or hold? I have been saving my high waiver spot and dont wanna waste it thanks

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @AJ: Yep. I like RoLo as the last big on your team. If one better comes along then take it. JV has the upside that makes him worth holding onto, even still… I don’t covet thy waiver number much either. If a player is going to make my team better then he’s worth using my waiver on.

  7. Pavel says:
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    Slim. in a 12-team dynasty league (we keep 12 players-a lot- in the offseason). I’ve just been offered:

    I give: Lebron/Lawson+ 4th round pick in the upcoming draft
    I get:Deron Williams/Aldridge/Al Jefferson

    I’m set in assists. And this guy likes those 2 players that I have. Should I try to switch deron with harden or cp3 (he’s got them both) or just accept the trade.? or keep lebron?

    • Pavel says:
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      @Pavel: I would also get the 1st round pick in that draft

      • Slim

        Slim says:
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        @Pavel: Definitely the Deron part that’s keeping me from saying to go for it. 1st round pick next year is going to be extremely valuable, this upcoming draft class is looking good. If you switch Deron with Harden or CP3 then I would understand him taking the pick out of the deal and I’m ok with that. I would try the trade keeping the pick 1st of course. I would lean Harden because he’s 4 years younger and does a little more than CP3 outside of the assists. I’m not too worried about Aldridge or Jefferson at 28. Still plenty of good years left.

  8. R says:
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    Who would you drop to stash Larry Sanders between Jose Calderon, JJ Hickson, and Miles Plumlee?

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @R: I think this is need dependent. If your good with 3′s Calderon doesn’t do much else. Hickson vs Plumlee… Points vs Blocks. I’m going to assume Sanders is going to get plenty of playing time when he returns. I believe it so to me it’s a safe assumption. With that said, If you think adding Sanders for Plumlee will give you a good enough upgrade in blocks then I would go that route. If you think you still need more blocks then dropping Hickson for Sanders is completely reasonable. I can see scenerios for each being the drop. If you don’t mind posting the rest of your team and league settings then I can give a slightly more personalized response.

      • R says:
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        @Slim: Sure! We play a 8 category head to head with Pts, Asts, FG%, FT%, Rebs, Threes, Stls, and Blks.
        My team is:
        James Harden
        John Wall
        Jrue Holiday
        Trey Burke
        Jose Calderon
        Jimmy Butler
        Jeff Green
        Carlos Boozer
        JJ Hickson
        Miles Plumlee
        Victor Oladipo
        Amir Johnson
        Kobe Bryant

        • Slim

          Slim says:
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          @R: In a 12 teamer or less Butler and I’m sorry to say Kobe can both go. Especially if your going to add another injured player. Larry Sanders should be really helpful for this team. I like the depth at PG. Lots of steals. Lots of 3s. If you can’t bring yourself to drop one of those 2 then I think the drop is Hickson. You’ll need Plumlee with Sanders to compete with the good teams in blocks. Calderon is helping enough categories to keep around even though his assists aren’t really needed.

          • R says:
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            @Slim: Thanks for your help! This really helped to clear a lot up.

  9. Kevin says:
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    So…Kobe was dropped today after the mention of a 6 week timetable for return. I’m in a 10 team 9 cat league. I dropped t jones for asik thinking the trade was going through today. I am currently 3rd in the standings and lead my division . Dropping asik to stash kobe would be worth it? or not worth it?

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Kevin: I’m not a big fan of Asik and I’m not sure he’s a must own in a 10 teamer even with 25-30 minutes nightly. If you want to hold him through today I don’t see a problem with that though. We’re talking about sometime in February for Kobe… In a 10 teamer I would let someone else deal with all those missed games.

  10. Shaft says:
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    I need an assistGNOF. Like a ThraAGNOF, but pretty much just assists. Steve Blake was my boy, but he’s gone now. We lost a lot of good men out there. Trades. Unruly fans. UCL tears. I don’t want to talk about it. That’s neither here nor there. Who can fill that need? Grieves Vazques once Lowry is traded? I just dropped Jordan Crawford for Wilson chandler. (Chandler is a SG/SF on yahoo even though he should probably be a SF/PF so it’s a nice arbitrage opportunity, anyways I digress). Crawford got picked up for chalmers. So my only real options on the wire are now chalmers, knight, urdih, dj augustin or farmar. What do you think?

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Shaft: Tough dropping Crawford for Wilson but with Rondo’s uncertainty I don’t mind it too much. I was riding high with Blake for a while too. I replaced him with Augustin in one league. Udrih in another. Both are temporary but should get all the minutes they can handle for the time being. Farmar has a shot to be productive for a while whenever he suits up again. Knight is coming on strong but he’s not going to give Blake like assists. Chalmers is really just owned for his steals. The best and safest player here is easily Knight though and in a bubble that’s the guy I add. With some nice all be it temporary options like that I would just stream assists. If I had to pick one of them to help immediately I would lean Augustin. Last 2 games were pretty good against some really tough competition.

  11. Jake VZ says:
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    Long Question, but I want to settle this debate. Can you rank these teams in order of best to worst?

    Team 1-
    PG IT2
    SG Burks
    G Jennings
    SF Carmelo
    PF Noah
    F Faried
    C Pekovic
    C Hawes
    UTIL Conely
    UTIL Holiday
    BN Hickson
    BN B Wright
    BN Granger
    BN Allen

    Team 2-
    PG Wall
    SG Evans
    G Westbrook
    SF Iguodala
    PF Love
    F Ibaka
    C Cousins
    C B Lopez
    UTIL D Williams
    UTIL Rubio
    BN Valanciunas
    BN Gortat
    BN Burke
    BN W Chandler

    Team 3-
    PG CP3
    SG Wade
    G Dragic
    SF Afflalo
    PF Monroe
    F George
    C Aldridge
    C Hibbert
    UTIL Ja. Crawford
    UTIL West
    BN N Young
    BN Nene
    BN G Green
    BN Plumlee

    Team 4-
    PG Curry
    SG Leonard
    G Bledsoe
    SF Gay
    PF Millsap
    F Horford
    C Jordan
    C Bogut
    UTIL Kemba
    UTIL Hayward
    BN Sanders
    BN Hill
    BN Kobe
    BN Wroten

    Can you please rank them and state why you chose #1? It’s a league with categories as FTM/FGM/3s/PTS/OREB/DREB/AST/STL/BLK/TO/DD… My friends and I always argue whose team is best, so I want to settle it haha

    • Jake Van Zuiden says:
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      @Jake VZ: Also should I do either trade? My Westbrook and Ibaka for his Lee and Kyrie? Or Dwight and Stevenson for my Ibaka and Rubio

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Jake VZ: I gotcha on JBs post…

  12. Frank White says:
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    Sup Brotha… I think I’m gonna cut ties with OJ Mayo and there’s a couple guys I wanted to through out to see if they’re good replacements. Since I got Bledsoe and let go of Hayward I know I’m losing some boards so I was kinda looking for a sg-sf or a sf so I saw Caron Butler or Matt Barnes (LAC). These other guys are PG’s but look good too. DJ Augustin or Aaron Brooks, since Beverley is gone and Lin being sidelined. Anyway do any of these guys jump at you that are better then Mayo?? I like Caron Butler but don’t know anything about him. Thanks bud!!

    • Frank White says:
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      Thanks.. Is he gonna give me some boards or was Butler’s one game back with 11 boards a fluke??

      • Frank White says:
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        my bad wrong person with 2nd question.. Lol

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Frank White: I think Carons first game was heavily aided by the Philly bumb. Aka 76ers play no defense. Out of those options and needing boards I would go with Butler. Although closer to about 6 boards per game is a more reasonable expectation. I don’t think he’s going to survive 40 min per game, I think when Larry Sanders returns there is going to be a minutes crunch, and as the season progresses Antetokounmpo and Middleton should get more minutes. All in all I think he’s a temporary add just like the rest of those options. Barnes has too much competition which gets worse when Redick returns. Augustin is a big question mark whenever Hinrich returns and Brooks is temporary with all the injuries to Houstons back court.

  13. Frank White says:
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    Hey buddy I hope you had a Merry Christmas!! Who would you rather have on your team right now, Terrence Jones or Taj Gibson?? Oh also, When they say standard formats, what does that mean cause I’m in a 10 team CAT and I didn’t know if that was standard?

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Frank White: Thank you. It was crazy but a lot of fun. I hope you had a Merry Christmas as well. I would go with Terrence Jones. I think they both stay just under 30 minutes per game but Jones does more. 0.5 a 3-pointer plus a full TO less is significant. Even though Jones minutes have fluctuated greatly the per minute production hasn’t fallen off much. It’s pretty close though and if Noah or Boozer goes down Tajs minutes and production should sky rocket.

      What I consider a ‘Standard fantasy basketball format’ would be H2H, 9 Cat (FG%, FT%, 3PTM, Points, Rebounds, Assists, Steals, Blocks, Turnovers). And for example a normal week would be a 5-4 win or 3-6 loss. The next most popular variation to ‘Standard’ is probably 8 Cat, which is just 9 Cat minus turn overs. An example of a non-standard league would be a ‘points league’. As in 1 point per point scored, 2 points per assist, 1.5 points per rebound, etc… Then at the end of the week you add up all the points and either get 1 win or 1 loss like in fantasy football. I won’t play in a ‘points’ league. Just not my style. All those types are still technically CAT leagues but add up wins and losses completely differently. I would consider a ‘Standard’ league size to be 12 teams with 13 man rosters or 156 owned players. Less would be shallow. More would be deep. I reread that at least 5 times and I think it makes sense…

      • Frank White says:
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        Lol Thanks.. Yeah then I’m in a standard format then cause I’m in a H2H 9 Cat but 10 team 14 man roster.. Yeah Christmas was crazy with my 3 year old twins but they got what they wanted and left Santa BROKE!! Lol. Oh and I just wanted to add that I was gonna drop Pierce for him.. Good idea??

        • Frank White says:
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          I was gonna drop Farmar but I just picked him up and he’s got a couple games left this week but I’m gonna probly drop him next week if he doesn’t produce

          • Frank White says:
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            But i’ll drop Farmar if you think I should hold Pierce

        • Slim

          Slim says:
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          @Frank White: That’s a fun age. My niece is 3 and it was really the 1st year she knew what was going on.

          I would keep Pierce over Farmar. I’m not a fan of either really but Pierce could maintain season long value which I doubt Farmar can do. Oh and I would prefer to avoid ALL Lakers. I’m sick of D’Antoni.

  14. Frank White says:
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    I’m sorry about all these separate questions but I have one more.. Lol, I have Marc Gasol on the bench but he should be back in a week or 2 but right now I’m in 1st place. Do you think I should pickup and hold JJ Redick on my team?? They say he’s aiming on Jan 15th or do you think he’s not worth holding??

    • Slim

      Slim says:
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      @Frank White: No worries. I would much rather hold Marc Gasol if your choice is between those 2. In a 10 teamer I wouldn’t bother much with JJ till he returns. He doesn’t do much outside of 3s. The back court for the Clippers is getting awfully crowded too. If you wait till JJ gets back to add him then I’m OK with it. If you miss out, oh well, it’s just not that big of a loss to me.

  15. Frank White says:
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    Sup Slim…

    Mike Conley
    Jeff Teague
    Eric Bledsoe
    Jameer Nelson
    Carmello
    Reggie Jackson
    Farmar
    West
    Paul Millsap
    Ariza
    Tristan Thompson
    Henson
    Terrence Jones
    Marc Gasol
    Would you try to trade Mike Conley if you were me and if so do you think Afflalo or( Rando maybe with someone else since he’s hurt) or A big guy if you think I need one are good trade offers?? Maybe throw a guy out there that you think I need that I can get for one of my guys..? Sorry I know it’s a broad question but just thinking.. Lol

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