As an ancient proverb goes – “I’d like to introduce you to an old friend and a new friend.”  Ok, so I made that up.  But it sounds good!

For an old friend I’ve mentioned a few times and pumped up in my last rankings update before the season started up, my boy Omri Casspi had another solid outing last night that probably was under the radar.  In 24 minutes, he went 7/8/5 with no turnovers, 2-4 from the field and 3-4 from the line.  He just looks awesome every time I see him play.  Did you know he was the first Israeli to play in the NBA?  He’s pretty much Chandler Parsons but with Chandler Parsons in his way.  After a ho-hum first two games, his past two have been fantastic – and this last one without hitting a three which is a big part of his game.  Not necessarily a must own in 12-teamers, but definitely worth a look, and needs to be grabbed in 14+.

Then my new friend – Gal Mekel on the Mavericks.  You’re like, “who the eff is Gal Mekel?  I thought this was NBA not WNBA!”  Mekel was signed to a three-year deal by the Mavs this offseason, and became the second Israeli to join the NBA.  Cut to Amar’e Stoudemire going, “Hey, I should count!”  With Shane Larkin dealing with an ankle injury, and no Devin Harris for a while, Mekel is getting full-on backup PG run and playing well doing it.  He got his 2nd 6 assist game last night going 9/4/6 and hitting a 3.  Sure some run was in junk time, but with the oft-injured Jose Calderon the only one ahead of him (hasn’t played in over 68 games since 2007), Mekel could find his way into starts.  Of course, now I’ve ruined my play on him in the REL League.  Let’s just hope no one in that league is reading!  Here’s what else I saw last night in fantasy hoops:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The season of feverish NBA fantasy drafts is over, for the most part, and now the post draft hangovers come crashing home. Boy, did those Mai Tai’s go down smooth! So smoothly, that you look at your team in the harsh light of day, and beyond the first couple of picks, you’re filled with regret. Taking Bismack Biyombo in the 5th round? For shame, good reader, for shame!

Well, like the preacher said, I’m here to tell you the good news – All is not lost! There are some gems to be found on the waiver, and I’m here to help you find them. And if Rapscallions like JB have taught us anything, it’s that many “day-after” regrets can be cured with some quick thinking and a shot of penicillin.

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Are you not entertained?!

Chris Paul sure put on a show last night, dropping treys, lobbing alleys, fending off tigers chained up as obstacles.  You name it!  He torched the Warriors in the Clippers “home opener” (despite it being their second straight game in LA) for an unreal 42/4/15 and 6 steals.  Shot 12-20 from the field and won you FT% this week going 16-17 at the stripe.  Paul was so much like Russell Crowe.  In LA there’s even a “Coliseum” (ok maybe that’s a stretch)!  Games like this support Doc wanting to cover up the banners and jerseys.  Even when Kobe gets back, Paul has to be the best player in LA.  I said it before on Opening Night and reiterate below, but the acquisition of J.J. Redick does wonders for Paul in the Clippers spacing.  I said he’ll have double-digit assists almost every game.  I said he’d score 42 against the Warriors.  Dammit, OK so I didn’t say that second one.  Elite assists and steals are par for the course, and scoring like this in a few more games will have him the easy #3 fantasy player.  Here’s what else I saw in last night’s two NBA games:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Man, what a huge night it was across the NBA with nearly every team in action.  It obviously all starts with the shocker Philly put on the Heat, and Michael Carter-Williams‘ unreal debut.  I was following with my co-workers during the game and tweeted that if he got a triple-double in his first NBA game, the universe would implode.  Thankfully MCW was a steal short and we’re all still here.  His final line of 6-10 (4-6 3PTM 6-8 FT) 22 Pts 7 Rebs 12 Asts and 9 Stls might actually win some owners their matchups this week on its own.  Just preposterous.  Most steals in NBA history in a player’s debut.  Ok before we all go nutso, remember the Heat played without Dwayne Wade (rest), don’t have a PG, and had all their hands weighed down with new championship rings.  So that’s not really an excuse, but so what?!  The shooting efficiency was fantastic (the biggest knock on him coming into the year), plus he had only one turnover (his second main knock).  “Nice knockers!”  Thanks Young Frankenstein!  MCW indeed moves up a fair bit in value in my eyes, but this is likely his best line on the year.  MCW was wildly inconsistent in college and I don’t expect much consistency on a terrible 76ers team (I know they just beat the Heat, but c’mon).  Look for John Wall to lock him up on Friday and cool the hype.  Despite inconsistencies, it goes without saying that MCW should be owned in all leagues now (78% Yahoo, 59.4% ESPN), so if for some reason he’s available in your league, you gotta get him.  I’m not expecting MCW to be an elite player, but will continue to contribute even in down games.  Here’s what else I saw across Fantasy Basketball last night:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The period of free agency continues to shape the fantasy basketball-scape with fresh meat on terrible teams and players signing with contenders to be relegated to bench duty.  With baseball in fun swing and the NFL getting half of the ESPN air time no matter what time of year it is, a lot of NBA moves have been made under the radar.  Look for every division to get a team-by-team breakdown and some early fantasy thoughts on the new faces in new places:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

You know what?  I still blame whatever broadcast I was watching while logging Yahoo fantasy highlights for calling Jonas Valanciunas Latvian and not Lithuanian as the cause for me to make the same mistake.  Sure I should’ve fact checked!  But who does that anymore?  Cough, cough, Kansas City Royals graphics truck, cough. Then again, maybe I heard wrong and I have no idea which game it was and who’s broadcast it was, so I need proof.  Who needs proof anymore either?  I pretty much don’t know or have anything…

Well now that I have undersold my intelligence, let me try to get you to buy on the Luminescent Lithuanian before anyone else in your draft can nab him:

Please, blog, may I have some more?

So I assume you’re reading this because you made it into the playoffs. Or you’re a big Will Shakespeare fan, drawn in by my plagiarized title. If you’re looking for Willy Shakespeare, boy, have you stumbled into the wrong part of town, so turn about, post haste, and don’t look back, anon!

If you’ve made the playoffs, however, congratulations are in order, but as the title suggests, you have a long way to go, and things can go to poop in a split second. We need to make sure none of the players on your fantasy team don’t go pulling a Brutus on you, and stab you in the back in your moment of glory! There’s got to be a guy who has been underperforming on your roster, so let’s focus on whom to watch out for, shall we?

Please, blog, may I have some more?

I’ve never been that bothered by snakes.  Now I never went out of my way to play with them or anything (except my own – bada bing!), but never ran the other way either except when I was in New Mexico when I was like 7.  When I was working on my parents mountain house when I was in high school, there was a snake under the scrap heap I was clearing and I killed that little bitch with a shovel.  If that doesn’t boost your testosterone, then I guess you need to contact Tony Bosch at Biogenesis.  The resident snake of the NBA (in name only – easy Laker fans), Kobe Bryant, the Black Mamba himself, went down hard after twisting his ankle last night, and blames Dahntay Jones for intentionally crowding him.  I thought snakes didn’t have ankles?  Well, this injury after sliding into 8th place in the West just puts the icing on the cake of the Lakers ridiculous season.  Right now the prognosis is “out indefinitely.”  About all you can do is make your sacrifices to the fantasy gods and cross your fingers.  One thing Kobe has going for him is that he is resilient to injury and can heal quickly.  He’s kinda like the Derek Jeter of the NBA.  And Jeter never had any ankle issues….  I could see Bryant back sooner rather than later, but stay tuned.

Here’s what else went down in fantasy basketball:

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One of the many amazing things here at Razzball, for your perusing pleasure, good reader, is the amount of content you’re provided with every week by adequate (me) to great (everyone else) writers. The difficulty is that there is going to be some overlap. I mean, there are only some 400 players in the entire league, and many of them aren’t fantasy relevant. Feel free to request in the comment section if you want a hard-hitting fantasy break down of the merits of picking up Cartier Martin or Garrett Temple, but for now, if you see some of the same names from JB’s, ChrisV’s, Blairtch’s, or Tehol’s articles, is because they are awesome, and I can’t stop them, I can only hope to contain them…

Please, blog, may I have some more?

Everyone saw it coming.  Everyone had it circled on their calendar.  The epic in-state rivalry of the NBA’s best team going for their 16th straight win playing at home against… the second-worst team in the NBA.  Of course it would be a nail-biter!  The Heat went up big, but the Magic went on a 46-21 run and kept it tight until LeBron James’ game-winning layup.  Good thing Nikola Vucevic had fouled out so there were no shot blockers left.  The Magic certainly didn’t put a spell on the refs, racking up 30 fouls and two foul-outs to the Heat’s 17.  Conspiracy!  The Magic fouls were illusions!  You don’t have time for my illusions!  Tricks are what whores do for money.  Or cocaine.  LeBron better get some nice wedding presents from those home refs.  You think Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert got invited?  Be funny if Lebron sent him an invite with a -1.  This is a fantasy basketball blog right?  Hah, let’s get into the numbers from last night’s games:

Please, blog, may I have some more?