In what was some brutally bad basketball last night, John Henson led the woeful Milwaukee Bucks into Chicago against a Bulls team more battered up than a candy bar at a state fair… and the Bucks actually won! It’s horrifying to think in today’s NBA that a guy like Henson might have been the most polished offensive player on the court for EITHER TEAM. It was brutal. This was the game I made the Yahoo highlights for, and man, it was more of a wreck than if you went out partying and decided that Lindsay Lohan would be your DD. But for fantasy, whew-ee if you’re a Henson owner! Huge rainbow line of 25/14/2/3/6. It was so good from the big man that Larry Sanders punched a wall. But the icing on the cake, was this preposterous rainbow shot to close out the rainbow night. I love the Bulls announcers reacting to that. ”You’ve got to be kidding me!” Good thing he didn’t take that shot in Cowboys Stadium, that mighta hit the scoreboard! It feels really good seeing Henson going off, as he was a guy I ranked really high (#100 exactly) and have recommended him over a lot of fringe-wire adds through the young season. His stats are helping fill all the Andre Drummond voids I have! Win some, lose some… Henson is obviously a must-own in all leagues, and I think can maintain solid production playing at the 4 when The Colonel is back. Here’s what else I saw last night in hoopsland:Please, blog, may I have some more?
In Shaq-ramento, when Christmas carolers sing at your doorstep, if it’s deck the halls you must insist a free a Rudy Gay jersey! You better believe Sleep Train Arena is gonna deck their halls with Gay apparel. That is, if it has power. Zing! Last night, the Kings picked up Gay from the Raptors in a 7-player deal with a lot more fantasy impact than just the players involved. The Kings also picked up Aaron Gray and Quincy Acy, for the fewest letters in three surnames you could ever receive in a three-player haul. In return, Greivis Vasquez, John Salmons, Patrick Patterson and Chuck Hayes got exported to Canada. I hope they have winter wear! Instead of going over all of the impact in the open, it’ll be fettered out and we’ll focus on Gay at the top. Nothing changes. Brevity! Lots of shots, the Kings don’t become any better or worse, but get a good all-around player. The fantasy impact on Gay seems null. The trade overall I think it a win-win, both in real hoops and in fantasy. The Kings dumped guys that don’t really help their rotations for a star, and the Raptors break up their two high-volume shots guys with it not working. Plus the Raptors are looking to rebuild around the Luminescent Lithuanian. Then all sorts of fantasy optimism below, along with other action across the NBA over the weekend:Please, blog, may I have some more?
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?
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?
[It’s March of 2011. A disenchanted DeMarcus Cousins is mindlessly taking part in a layup drill during a practice at ARCO Arena/ Power Balance Pavilion/ Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento]
Paul Westphall: Ah, yeah, what’s up DeMarcus. Um, I understand there’s been a few questions about your efforts on the glass? Yeah, I’m gonna need you to go ahead and fix that by participating in some rebounding drills, um-kay? Greaaat. Oh, oh, and I almost forgot. Ahh, I’m also gonna need you to go ahead and practice on Sunday, too…
[Cousins says nothing, fumes, and goes off to take part in the rebounding drills with Assistant Coach Keith Smart]
DeMarcus Cousins: Hey, guys.
Tyreke Evans: What’s up, G?
Marcus Thornton: Oh, it’s a little early.
DeMarcus Cousins: I gotta get outta here. I think I’m gonna lose it.
Keith Smart: Uh-oh. Sounds like somebody’s got a case of the Mondays.Please, blog, may I have some more?
After re-ranking the top 10, top 20, and top 50, it’s easy to see there’s been big changes since last May. Below are the Razzball Updated Rankings with the previous May rankings in parentheses before the adjusted rank:
(68) ↑ 51. Derrick Favors – Utah declining to bring back either Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap gives you a slight inclination on their thoughts on Favors, and they’re already talking contract extension with their emerging big as well. I love his athleticism, and if I miss out on Serge Ibaka who I’m high on early, I’m gonna want to reach on Favors to win blocks. I think he’ll be a top-5 NBA swatter.
(51) 52. Kemba Walker – Kemba has been higher on virtually every rankings I’ve seen, and I’m just not top-50 high on him. He had a really solid season last year, but the terrible FG% still worries me as I feel like he forces some offense. The acquisition of Big Al is going to give the Bobcats/soon-to-be Hornets an actual scorer down, and I don’t think that translates into helping Kemba all that much. I like Gerald Henderson a lot too to take a bigger scoring role. The 2.0 steals a game last year was elite, but I see those going down along with the scoring, and a comparable 5.7:2.4 Ast:TO ratio. All that spells a slightly down ranking for me. Although to be fair, he’s played in every single Bobcats game in his career, so there’s that reliability that can’t be ignored.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?
As we continue to navigate through the NBA Playoffs, it’s been a fun challenge to rank for the 2013-2014 season. There’s still free agency. There’s still a draft. Hey, at least we know there will be a season unlike 2011!
If you missed it, my top 10 then top 20 came out last week. Hey, it’s early, you might say “way too early” (see what I did there, it’s in the title!) so these rankings are subject to change. And I want no accusations of flip-flopping! It’s not my fault if all the sudden Dwight Howard goes to the Bobcats and becomes a first-rounder! OK, so that is as likely as Rony Seikaly… returning. You gotta stop on the word that rhymes Jean-Ralphio! Man I’m liking that show. Also, random side note, Googling Rony Seikaly to spell his name correctly broke Google. I searched it and it would freeze, despite everything else working. Weird.
As I battle my ADHD to get into the rankings, let’s just dive into it:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Tobias Harris is going to be immortalized in my fantasy career as the guy who got me through some injuries and LeBron benchings to win titles in almost every league in 2013. I was on this guy at the trade deadline and continue to ride him into the sunset with a twinkle in my eye.
With LeBron yet again benched like I had a feeling he would be, Harris was a monster against his former Bucks going 13-20 (3-4 3PTM) 30 Pts 19 Rebs and 5 Asts. Harris hit a monster 3 with 1.9 seconds left to send it into OT and put the Magic on his back. That kinda sounds like a sex move. There’s something kinda like that called a Houdini, but I’ll let our friends at urban dictionary or something explain that one.
Here’s what else went down last night across the NBA:Please, blog, may I have some more?
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!):Please, blog, may I have some more?