As we head into August, now is a perfect time to take a look back at the free agency period for the upcoming 2014-15 NBA season.

While there is one big name yet to sign (Eric Bledsoe), a few less-intriguing options still on the market (Michael Beasley, Andray Blatche, Kent Bazemore, Jordan Crawford), and another who’s unsure whether he’ll play or retire (Ray Allen), most of the fantasy basketball world knows where guys will be playing this season.  Of course, that still doesn’t include the possibility of Kevin Love finding a new home by the end of the summer, but that could be the subject of an entirely different article.

There is little doubt in anyone’s mind that Love will land in Cleveland, which will make them a huge force in the Eastern Conference — and in the entire NBA.

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So one of my favorite Charlotte Hornets memories was Glen Rice winning the All-Star Game MVP in 1997.  I was still a chitlin, but even then I knew the Hornets were the epitome of small market (and moved just a few years later).  Rice seemed like a fill-in bench player (even though he was pretty nasty in 96-97 with a by far career-high 26.8 a game), but went absolutely bonkers in the ASG second half, putting up 20 in the 3rd quarter.  He was hotter than P.J. Hairston in a “yo mama” contest!  I knew the Hornets had no title aspirations (ending up getting swept in the first round), but it made the whole season worth it.

And the Glen Rices of the world now have another, well smaller, trophy on their mantle with Glen Rice Jr. winning the Summer League MVP.  Actually, I’m not sure if he gets a trophy… Maybe just a stack of $1,000 in Belagio chips… Either way, Rice put up a 6-game line of 25/7.8/2.3/2.5/0.5 boosted by a plain stupid 36/11/3/4/0 line with six treys last Saturday.  “Pretend every game is the All-Star game film I always make you watch, son!”  The Wizards boosted their wings (and headband usage) with Paul Pierce brought in, plus Otto Porter should see a lot of minutes off the bench.  But behind Bradley Beal, Martell Webster just had herniated disc back surgery leaving a big early-season gap for backup SG minutes.  Sure Garrett Temple might be able to fill-in, but off the hot Summer, I think Rice Jr. has got some minutes coming his way.  Plus one of the biggest concerns for Beal is his injury risk, so a deep-league gamble on Glenny Jr. could be an interesting flier.  Here’s what else has gone down with Summer League wrapping up and free agency moves:

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Thursday night’s Draft was as exciting as advertised.  Some of the top prospects we’ve seen come around in a while found homes amongst the NBA’s 30 teams — yet, there were very few surprises, outside of maybe Aaron Gordon getting picked No. 4 overall by the Orlando Magic.

Those of us expecting some big trades to go down were also disappointed.  There was really only one trade that didn’t involve a straight swap of picks or previously picked players, and that was D-League phenom Pierre Jackson getting shipped from NOLA to Philly for Russ Smith.

The big trade news around the league came a few days prior to the Draft when the New York Knicks and the Dallas Mavericks announced a blockbuster deal that sent Tyson Chandler and Raymond Felton from the Big Apple to D-Town in exchange for Jose Calderon, Samuel Dalembert, Shane Larkin, Wayne Ellington and two second-round picks, which ended up being Cleanthony Early and Thanasis Antetokounmpo.

Now, how does this affect fantasy basketball owners going forward?

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So we’re through my top-50 and now getting into the mid-rounds.  We’re taking this through the whole top 100, but some of these are going to be gold and some fool’s gold.  As in, Larry Sanders‘ gold.  If I got to the end of a rainbow and Larry Sanders was there, I’d ask for a refund…

Through the Top 20 and Top 50, I think I’ve done the rankings pretty well.  They tell you towards the end of high school, “the smart ones get the As, but the most successful get Bs.”  I might have made that up since I never studied for virtually anything and got Bs…  But a 3.00 GPA thus far sounds about right!  Rankings are based on my final updated top 200, comparing them to the FantasyPros aggregate Draft Day Rankings along with Basketball Monster’s Total Value for 9-cat leagues on the season.  Slim then grades me.  I asked him, “will you give me As if I show you my double-Ds?”  He then flunked me…  Here’s a look back at the Top 75 for the 2013-14 Fantasy Basketball Season:

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Last night might have been an utter low for the New York Knickerbockers.  Haha, yup they get a full name scolding like your mom used to do.  Got shellacked by the Lakers by 31, in another horrific TNT Overtime fail.  It’s funny that the Lakers were involved in another redonkulous blowout this month:  One because the first was also on TNT OT when the Clippers beat them by, I dunno a million (?), and second because I had the following remarks on Xavier Henry, whom I call Wheels, three-ish week ago after that Clips blowout: “I dunno, I just have a weird feeling he is going to be fantasy-relevant even in shallower leagues in a few weeks because D’Antoni likes him.  And why not give him minutes again on this team?”  And that’s me quoting me!  It’s been a little up-and-down, and Wheels is a bit of a ThrANOF, but 8-11 (3-4 3PTM 3-5 FT) 22/3/0/2/1 last night.  Only 23 minutes (and oddly enough 23:20 exactly in the past two games), but mid-20 minutes seems about right the rest of the way.  He can easily score mid-teens, get a couple swipes, and nab a trey for you.  Jodie Meeks-lite, if you will.  I think even in 12-teamers he’s worth a look right now for the remainder of the week with three games left on the slate that all are pretty saucy (@MIL, @MIN, PHX).  And another 4-gamer next week with good matchups.  I just picked him up myself as I hope to slip by the Slippery Squirrels in my RCL playoffs.  Need more points and only up one in steals.  Go JB HUMAN!  Here’s what else I saw last night in NBA action:

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Perhaps the funniest catch phrase I made up with my buddies while watching the NBA through college -“Wahhhhhh I’m Jarrett Jack!” – can be used in so many instances.  It’s like Brian Dennehy’s speech about how versatile the F-Bomb is when he played Bobby Knight in an ESPN movie.  Whomever greenlit that idea, airing a movie with constant F-Bombs on ESPN2, is probably fired.  He’s like, “Don’t fire me!  Wahhhhhhhhh!  Wahhhhhhhhhhh, I’m Jarrett Jack!”  I use this phrase because every time I seem to watch him, he looks so so sad.  And just look at the cover screen grab for the Yahoo recap from the game last night!  So after Kyrie Irving flexed his guns too hard, Jack had three starts of very uninspiring ball.  Mike Brown sat him down and said he needed more from him.  The veteran responded, “Wahhhhhhhhh I’m Jarrett Jack!”   Then last night rolled around with the Knicks rolling out Raymond Felton to play defense.  Seriously, it’s like Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory with the blueberry chick.  The only difference is Felton actually ate the meals and didn’t chew the LSD-laced gum!  After a minute or two, Felton was winded, and went “Wahhhhhhhh, I have to guard Jarrett Jack!”  Jack lit up the terrible Knicks D for 31/5/10 with a trey and a side of whoopass.  Finally kicking it into gear as the starter, Jack has a four-gamer cooking up for week two of the playoffs, with my eye eagerly on Wednesday at the awful Pistons.  It doesn’t really matter who he’s playing, pretty much a must own.  Of course, in all my leagues where I’m still alive, he was already snatched up.  “Wahhhhhhhhh, I’m Jarrett Jack!”  Here’s what else I caught over the weekend in NBA action:

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Oh man!  So many places to go with a title like that… Last night we had two virtually 100%-owned big men step back on the hardwood in Derrick Favors and Andrew Bogut.  Let’s start first with Aussie Aussie Aussie who had his typical Oi Oi Oi multi-cat line for 4/7/4/1/1.  Played 29 minutes which is very encouraging, but did foul out.  The big man fouls were rough in this one!  Both starting 4/5s combined for 10 fouls in Golden State at Detroit.  Mark Jackson pre-game must’ve been like, “pretend you’re all Artest and the Pistons just threw a beer on you!”  I remain high on Bogut for his multi-cat walkabouts.  Then to Favors – who had been doing fantasy owners no Favors with his bum hip – but lit it up in his return last night for 8-9 FG (4-4 FT) 20/4/1/0/3 in 29 you-couldn’t-ask-for-better minutes.  Hopefully his hip can hold up the rest of the season!  And hopefully he doesn’t Favor too much on the other one.  Womp womp.  Worst joke of the year!  Here’s what else I saw last night in fantasy hoops:

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Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.  A Priest, a Rabbi, and an Imam walk into a brothel.  The Priest says to the Rabbi…   Wait, why are you laughing?  You’ve heard it before.  That’s probably a good thing anyway because I might have been banned from the internet if I repeated it here.  Witty punchlines and non sequiturs aside the point remains unchanged.  No matter what our age, sex, or religion happens to be, we can’t just hope things are going to get better.  We need to prepare for the future.  For myself that means maintaining my perfectly quaffed facial hair with treatments of only the finest oils and herbs from the orient.  For JB, and he might get mad at me for telling you this, but he has this pink rubber bowl looking thing.  It has a wooden handle at the top and after about 5-10 minutes with that in the bathroom I swear he comes out looking taller.  Definitely more confident.  Still though – even the giants will shrink to the size of us mere mortals one day.  In fantasy basketball – as in real life – we can’t sit back and hope we are the next giants to be.  In a dynasty league, when our season is lost, that means selling off our older, declining players, and buying stock in the future.  Since we here at Razzball endorse insider trading, here is my take on a few future blue chippers:

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I might be making this up, but doesn’t Denver play the Flavor Flav “Yeah Boy!” when Randy Foye hits a three?  Well I hope they do!  After a brutal Super Bowl for the Broncos (and America), the Denver populous got some slight redemption with Foye hitting this buzzer-beater last night.  Sportscenter!  But even with that game-winner, Foye had a rainbow flirt of 14/7/4/1/2.  That’s not ThrAGNOF!  Even with Ty Lawson back, Foye is rackin’ up multi-cat!?  I haven’t been a big Foye fan for shallower leagues this year – I thought he was constantly overvalued – but getting 16 dimes in his previous game then a nice all-around line last night with Ty-Ty back; I think I’m a little more a believer.  Sure it’s only one game against a fast-paced Clippers team, but 40+ minutes yet again last night and now in three straight games and Foye is looking pretty locked in for good value right now.  Owned in 57% of Yahoo leagues seems a little thin.  Show ya Foye a little Flavor of Love.  Here’s what else I saw last night in NBA action:

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L-Tryptophan. The chemical compound found in Turkey that makes you sleepy. I am chock full of it, and I imagine more than a few of you gentle readers are as well. So lets make this the last holiday installment of the Buy/Sell before we head back to the couch for a little nappy. There are a few players, however, that might make you excited enough to chug the sluggish, gravy laden blood through your arteries, and wake you up to your regular, effervescent self. Cause if these cats don’t do it for you, you are officially in a catatonic state, fantasy-wise:

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