So the Pistons were looking like a playoff contending team with all their offseason acquisitions, but after a 2-1 record with the only loss a close one on the road to Memphis, the Pistons have dropped 4 straight to fall to 2-5. Plus Memphis looks god awful after that looking like a “good” loss. The Pistons aren’t very good. Hire Jim Leyland! The culmination of the four-game skid climaxed in an ugly 18- point loss to the Warriors last night that sent a few fantasy shockwaves down our fantasy spine. First Josh Smith was benched before playing 19 minutes and shot 1-6 for 2 Pts and no boards. That’s like a Robin Lopez line! He reportedly took some bad three-pointers. Those familiar with Josh Smith are like, “aren’t they all bad three pointers coming from him?!” Still think Smith will be fine and this could actually help him from killing your FG% on his off nights. The biggest benefactor to the J Smoove benching was my boyfriend (!) Kentavious Caldwell-Pope getting 24 minutes and going 9/3/1 with a trey and two steals playing a small (literally) forward role at times. Now I didn’t watch this game, so if he was matched up on Andre Iguodala who isn’t exactly a domineering 3, that makes sense. Then to top off a terrible night for Pistons fans, Razzball commenter favorite Andre Drummond went down with an ankle injury, playing way too late in the game that was a blowout. It was like a Booby Miles injury. He walked off the court under his own power, but ankle injuries are like the fantasy grim reaper’s wheel of fortune. Sometimes a terrible looking one turns into nothing, and sometimes you’re Tobias Harris. Hell Tyson Chandler walked off the court with a broken leg! You just never know… Keep your eye out for updates during the day. Hey, at least Drummond put up 16/14/0/3/3 for ya! Here’s what else I saw across the NBA last night: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?
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?
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?
Averaging 48% FG, 77% FT, 1.4 3PM, 8.3 pts, 3.5 rebs, 1.1 ast, .6 stl, and .7 blk this season, Brandon Rush has one of those underappreciated fantasy contributors from the mold of Shane Battier (not THIS year Shane Battier, but previous years).Please, blog, may I have some more?
Entering this season, everyone (including this humble narrator) was weary of Dirk Nowitzki, which is a weird thing to be for a healthy reigning NBA Finals MVP. I saw him drop deep into the second round in more than a couple drafts.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Upon occasion – especially while watching the Wizards – I think to myself, “Self? You could do better than these guys, right? Sure, you’re not as tall as most of these guys and you have trouble going to your left, you tend to get wheezy after just a couple laps up the court, your sweat makes people not want to talk to you, you choke on the gum you’re chewing 3/4 of the possessions, and your on-court communication consists mostly of reciting lines from ‘White Men Can’t Jump,’ but still, the Wizards are awful.” Now I know you think it’s weird that I address myself as Self, but if I didn’t do that how would I know who I’m talking to?Please, blog, may I have some more?
Trailing hot on the heels of yesterday’s Manu news (Manunus!) that he will be watching basketball from incredibly fantastic courtside seats for the next two months while wearing a $5,000 suit like the rest of us insanely wealthy society folk, comes the follow-up jab-cross-jab-hammer combo that Memphis forward Zach Randolph is also out a couple months with a slight tear in his knee.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Dwyane Wade was offered a reported $2 million a month to play in China (UPDATE! No he wasn’t). Marco Belinelli is likely off to Italy. Patty Mills and Ersan Ilyasova are off to Turkey. Jordan Farmar and Trevor Booker are off to the motherland, and compromise seems off the table as Billy Hunter made the panicky power-grabby statement that he believes the entire 2011-12 season will be canceled.Please, blog, may I have some more?
One more night. I know I’ve got a long summer filled with postseason rankings ahead of me. Not to mention keepers, sleepers, rookies, lockout news, more lockout news, Ron Artest-is-bored-and-crazy news, Greg Oden-is-progressing-and-looking-forward-to-a-lockout-shortened season news, Hey-is-that-Luke-Ridnour?-Why-is-he-even-in-this-state-much-less-at-my-laundromat-news, preseason rankings, and the inevitable process of writing about fantasy basketball if there is no real basketball.Please, blog, may I have some more?