Heading into the upcoming Fantasy Basketball Season, Razzball will be interviewing local NBA beat writers for some actual in-depth basketball knowledge to shed some additional light on our fantasy basketball knowledge. Keep your eye out for an interview for every NBA team through the summer. This installment comes courtesy of Reece Helms from leading Miami Heat blog Hot Hot Hoops.

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Continuing on with updated rankings after the top 10 and top 20, below rounds out my to 50.  Previous rankings are in parentheses next to these updated ranks, with up and down designations only for guys hopping up or down significant spots.  Have fun grilling these!

(22) 21. Nicolas Batum – A lot of commenters have wondered why he’s not in the top-20, and as I said in my previous 20-50 rankings, the declining FG% (45.1% to 42.3%) and 3PT% (39.1% to 37.2%) from 2011-12 to 12-13 gives me pause.  Despite playing over 8 more minutes a game in 11-12 to 12-13, his scoring average only went up 0.4 Pts a game and he only averaged 12 a game after the All-Star Break with his wrist injury.  He’s said the wrist is completely healed, and despite not needing surgery I would be worried with Batum as my second-rounder as the wrist could plague him again.  He’ll still be a multi-cat workhorse, but I see no way he chucks up 6.1 3’s a night with new acquisitions Mo Williams and C.J. McCollum also manning the perimeter.  Yeah their PT may not overlap too consistently, but I just don’t see the three point output mimicking last year.

(23) 22. LaMarcus Aldridge – Another big fantasy asset I’m slightly down on, the Blazers could very easily have another rough first half and look to trade their franchise big.  The rumors have been swirling for quite some time, and there’s virtually no destination where I think he would be a better fantasy player than in Portland.

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I’ve got to say, growing up a huge Charlotte Hornets fan, I am going to finally have a favorite team again next year.  I mean, the Bobcats is such a horrific name for a professional sports team that it actually made me not cheer for them.  If they follow my logic – citizens of New Orleans, I’m sorry, you’re no longer cheering for your NBA team.

If you missed it the other night, the 2013 NBA Draft Lottery was selected (coincidentally right when a huge Powerball was built up and won – conspiracy?!) with the Cleveland Cavaliers winning another #1 pick.  Nerlens Noel, or Captain N as I’m going to call him, looks like he’s heading to one of basketball’s friendliest cities.  Just don’t leave for another team in a televised special.  Honestly, my first thought was, “great, another talented player I have to navigate through injury estimates with.”

Anyway, I doubt any NBA rookies will crack the top 100 for fantasy this year, it’s a pretty weak draft class, but that’s why these way too early rankings will be capped at 100 before readdressed closer to the season when they’ll expand to 200.  As always with rankings this early, it’s May, the Finals haven’t even started yet, and there will be a lot of revisions.  But here’s how I see things shaking out as of right now:

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Sorry, Chris Bosh.  You don’t get to be called “The Big 1.”

As suspected, both LeBron James and Dwyane Wade sat out against the Knicks, and Carmelo Anthony went bonkers.  “I better play well with those guys out, because if we see them in the playoffs I’m gonna blow.”  Ok, that’s my attempt at his inner monologue.  So it might not be right at all the time, big deal.  It’s kinda like when you try to read NBA players lips and they say the craziest things.  That Bosh freeze frame is fantastic.

Here’s what else went down in a light night of NBA action:

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Razzball Nation!  If you have made it this far, you are either in the championship of your league or semi-finals.  Or you play roto, which, let’s face it, almost everyone saves for baseball.  However, the end of the season is more like the end of fantasy football than baseball with teams benching their stars with the playoffs a mere few weeks out.  It’s the perils of owning great players on the elite teams.  Just ask my buddy who I knocked off in my fantasy football championship years ago when the Eagles benched McNabb and Westbrook on Monday Night Football.  Then the Eagles lost to my Panthers in the NFC Championship (I think it was that year, might be wrong – can I have another fact checker? I’m too lazy for Google).  But I digress.

The Heat benched both LeBron James and Dwyane Wade with “injuries” on Sunday, and both are listed as questionable for tonight’s game against the Knicks.  What, are they the new Patriots?  Actually it’s a lot closer than you’d think.  You have Brady/Bron who get booed everywhere, Wade/…  Eh, doesn’t really work does it.  If you’re a Chris Bosh owner, you’re loving this.  Especially if you’re up against LeBron in your championship, like I am in one league.  But in another I have LeBron.  Conflicted feelings!  Just like my reaction to Prometheus.  Man does it look awesome, but the script got fewer revisions than White Chicks (originally Black Chicks).

Let’s get down and dirty with what went down across the NBA last night:

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I bet you haven’t heard and I’m breaking the news… The Heat lost last night!  27 games in a row, down the drain.  One of the most impressive streaks we’ve seen in American sports is over.  However, instead of linking highlights to the game, I think this sketch from one of the best sketch comedy shows Mr. Show encapsulates what happened last night.  David Cross is the Bulls and Bob Odenkirk is the Heat.

Fantasy-wise, the Heat big three had their usual games and Luol Deng was the Bulls top performer with 28 Pts and 4 3PTM.  It was one of the most-hyped, most-talked about regular season NBA games in recent memory, so apologies this isn’t a fantasy-heavy open.  That’s what the rest is for!

Here’s what else went down across a heavy slate of NBA action (yes, there were other games!):

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The Lipizzan horse breed dates back to the 16th century and they are the most breathtakingly graceful creatures young Tehol has ever laid eyes upon. Purebreds are known for being whiter than the purest Columbian blow and their massive members. Some have even said that a few of the grandest stallions had testicles that almost dragged on the frozen tundra of Slovenia (which is where they hail from) during mating season. Now comes the truly intriguing part: I have always held a high interest in genealogy, or was it gynecology? Anyway, the way Chandler Parsons has been playing this season has truly been a mind altering experience. He’s white and he’s American, two things that don’t mix with NBA basketball. This drove me to spend countless hours in the library and on the internet digging deeper than a coal miner, so that I could find Parsons true heritage (calls to his agent were not returned). After a month’s supply of caffeine pills and countless rockstars I was able to finally piece it together: this man is part Lipizzan! You see, his distant relatives started the first Lipizzan stud farm and kept it in the family for centuries along with a very little known secret. Now remember, these stallions had an insatiable thirst for ejaculation, so sometimes it was necessary to “milk” them. The idea first came to Bogdan Parsons in September of 1678; He would take this extra horse jizz and, mix it with his own and inseminate his betrothed. Now, you realize this would be difficult since it needs to be squeezed in at the same time in able for traces of the stallion’s spunk to take. Imagine jerking a horse off along with yourself at the same time. What timing! Young Bogdan mastered the art of stroking a few months later, timing it perfectly then impregnating his wife. A son was born. An incredibly strong son who grew to be as stronger than anyone in all of Europe and he was hung like, well, a horse. The rest, as they say, is history.

Parsons has finally reached stallionhood and is no longer a yearling, or a gelding like many of his relatives thought when he underwhelmed at the University of Florida. Last night Parsons dropped 32 points, 3 boards and 3 assists, while only missing one shot from the floor. Parsons is real. The research is real. Tehol Beddict is real, and this what else I witnessed last night in the NBA.

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Greetings Razzball nation! It is I, Tehol Beddict, your indebted servant, scrutinizing player performances yet again to help you win your fantasy league. Let’s just say that Chris Bosh has had a trying last few days. The guy already gets blasted mercilessly for his resemblance to prehistoric creatures, flaccid rebounding numbers and his many peculiar moments on camera, some which of are on this video.

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