Despite the two nationally telecast Opening Night games (with the Heat/Bulls starting at 8:00 PM EST), the season really started at 7:00 with the Magic against the Pacers. Non-fantasy players probably didn’t know this game ever happened. All the sudden in the second quarter, Andrew Nicholson just went off, going 8-9 in the first half with 18 points. Next thing you know, ESPN Fantasy Basketball is down. Why RCL is on Yahoo! But despite the Magic losing the lead and the offense going stagnant early in the third, Nicholson only played another few minutes in the second half and got stuck at 18 points in 19 minutes, only taking one additional shot and going 8-10 on the night. Womp womp. I never thought too much of Nicholson and don’t think he’s a guy to go rush to the wire for (unlike ESPN fantasy players!), and don’t forget Tobias Harris sat out with the ailing ankle. 19 minutes sounds about right for Nicholson, and he’s obviously not going to be a 48 PPG scorer per 48. But I hope the kid enjoyed the moment in the sun during that first half shooting spree. You temporarily broke Fantasy! He was like the Fantasy Basketball Kevin Ogletree. Here’s what else went down last night in the NBA:Please, blog, may I have some more?
At last! At long last.
The fantasy basketball season is upon us and we finally get to start seeing our lineups in action. I, for one, am pumped like never before. Sure it may be because it’s my first full season as the Razzball Editor on hoops, and sure, it may be because it’s the last year the North Carolina team will be called the “Bobcats”, but hey, we all have our things to look forward to!
If you’re new to Razzball, I’ll be giving you daily recaps of everything that went down across fantasy hoops (starting tomorrow) along with contributions from our other great writers (Pete, Dan and Slim) throughout the year. And if you missed my mention of it once or twice through the preseason, I work for a company that makes the Yahoo Fantasy Basketball player highlights which will start going up tonight! We also make the TNT Overtime highlights which come up on the timeline as you’re watching the game (It’s free! And starts tonight!). I bring this up, well first because it’s the coolest job, and second because I get to watch a lot of hoops and break down film of typically two games a night. So at the end of Daily Recaps I’ll be letting you what games I’m watching that night and you can either tweet me (@jbgilpin) if you’re wondering about something in the game or ask in comments the next day. We’re next level here at Razzball!Please, blog, may I have some more?
Listen, I know a lot of drafts have gone down, but I think we’re still right in the sweet spot of the drafting season. And while we’re in that sweet spot, why not start up an RCL Hoops league where we need more commishes! I am putting an embargo on comments unless you start up a league! Haha – kidding. But what’s less funny is the curse of my love for Trey Burke, as he’s going to have surgery on his index finger. “Don’t you point at me!” “I can’t help it, it’s the cast!” The original report of him missing 8-12 weeks had him a 100% no bueno in my book, but then he tweeted out (I guess using other fingers) that it should only be 4-6 weeks. Apparently he’ll be in a splint three weeks and will be reevaluated. As in – “my fingy still hurty!” I’m moving Burke way down and taking it as a sign to completely cool off my love for him. As in Arnold in the last bad Batman movie cool. “Tonight’s forecast – a freeze is coming in!” John Lucas III becomes the starting PG it appears in most games and probably needs to be owned in deeper leagues, but I wouldn’t drop someone that good for him. Lucas III didn’t crack the updated rankings because I don’t see season-long impact from him. Alec Burks could start some games at the point as well, and remains ranked as I think he plays both guard positions and minutes all year. That is despite a horrible 1-13 shooting performance last night… The Jazz are also re-evaluating trading for the Bulls’ Marquis Teague in a possible trade. Then there’s a rumor that free agent Jamaal Tinsley might also get signed. Sounding more and more like the Jazz PG is going to be a black hole this season. So I’m avoiding them all, but still holding Burke in 12+ team leagues (like my 1st RCL League) and hoping. Here’s what else has been going down through the preseason, and a final rankings update:Please, blog, may I have some more?
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.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Razzball Nation! You’ve been clamoring for some updated rankings, and here they come! I’m going to release them slowly, teasing them out, just like how we did the offseason rankings 5 months ago. These top guys haven’t changed too much, but the rankings will expand to the top 200, culminating in an easy-to-use and frequently updated cheat sheet you can use during all your drafts as they commence in the next few months. Fantasy NBA is coming and we’re ready to win you titles (or titties – depending on your league’s prize pool). Previous ranks from my Off-Season Rankings are in parentheses before this re-rank: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 full 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?
Fantasy Championship! Some leagues have just wrapped up their finals and hopefully you’ve got a nice Shiva for your mantleplace. But in other leagues the championship has just begun or it’s the last week-and-a-half for roto.
With a lot of big name players (ahem! Dwyane Wade ahem!) not getting on the court, there’s going to be a ton of new fringe guys getting minutes. It’s been since Saturday since we’ve had a round-up, so let’s look at the weekend’s action (no games yesterday with the NCAA final):Please, blog, may I have some more?
I don’t care who you are, if you are able to get a triple double then you deserve some praise. Well, unless it’s one of those triple doubles with 10 turnovers. Jordan Crawford has been inserted into the starting lineup and has been a plus player in just about every category (not FG%).Please, blog, may I have some more?
Pau Gasol and the Lakers have had a train wreck of a season so far. Pau is seeing nearly all his numbers being below career average (12.6/8.9/3.5/0.5/1.2 with 42% FG and 76% FT) and having “knee tendinitis” to boot. As such, I had to move him down in the tiers because you can’t be a Victoria’s Secret model with those type of numbers.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Last night, Kobe Bryant scored over half his team’s points (40) and reached a triple double. No, not the good kind of triple double…the kind where you also have 10 turnovers. An absurd line of 40/10/3/3 with 5 3PM, 12-28 FG, 11-13 FT, and the aforementioned 10 turnovers.Please, blog, may I have some more?