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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It’s been a year long punching bag.  Larry Drew sucks, he has no idea how to grow a young team, and because he plays guys different minutes every night the Bucks are atrocious and have no cohesion.  But that’s nothing new, as he was awarded the first Razzball Worst NBA Coach Razzie.  It’d be a wonder if he could do anything right!  Yesterday, I said Ramon Sessions might be the best player on that team (and he got a ridiculous 20 minutes to show for it Sunday), and Larry Screw actually paid attention to my advice!  Sessions started last night against the Clips, played 44 minutes, making the most of it.  Shot a ridiculous 13-21 (2-3 3PTM) for 28/6/7.  While this game was nice, and I maintain he’s probably the best fantasy asset on the Bucks right now, he’s not necessarily the best pickup.  The Bucks have only two more games this week, Thursday against the Lakers (which you obviously love) then Sunday against the Heat (not so much).  Plus it’s the Bucks and we all know how Larry Screwballs can jack things up.  I picked him up in one league just to lock down that Thursday game since it’s a light slate with only four games.  If you can afford to do that, Sessions is your man.  Here’s what else I saw last night in fantasy basketball action:

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The postseason is upon us in standard playoff leagues, and this is the last update of the fantasy regular season.  My swan song if you will!  My swan… Carroll?  Puns!  Puns!  “My anaconda don’t want none unless you’ve got puns, hun!”  What isn’t punny is DeMarre Carroll‘s production of late, pouncing on the hapless Bucks for 15/6/1/0/2 hitting four treys.  Carroll has been all about sir-mix-a-lotting multi-cats, with three straight pretty big fantasy games hitting three+ treys in all of em.  Shooting a great percentage, hitting treys, can get all the cats, what’s not to like?!  And yet, still only 47% owned in Yahoo.  Crazy sauce!  Looking ahead to the playoff schedule – and if you haven’t yet, be sure to read up on Slim’s schedule breakdown for the three upcoming weeks (which is what I’m going to use here on out, Slim you are a saint!) – the Hawks are non-migratory and play within a temperate zone of 4 games in all three playoff weeks.  So sink your talons into some DeMarre and soar into the fantasy championship to place a title trophy on your roost.  Puns!  Puns!  Here’s what else I saw last night in fantasy action:

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Ohhhhh, fringe-fantasy worthy Duke players…  I’m not a fan!  Belle Knox isn’t a fan!  Is she fringe-fantasy worth?  Plausibly.  Whilst you search her in Incognito mode, Kyle Singer went all multi-cat in a near-rainbow explosion for 11/7/3/5/1.  He even stole DeMarcus Cousins‘ parking spot!  Fight, fight!  While I’m not necessarily the biggest Singler fan (which I’m sure you can ascertain by the title and if you’ve read all year), he does have something going for him that all Lakers and Bucks would give their left nut for.  Consistent minutes.  After the All-Star break, Singler is averaging 34 minutes a game.  And hey, he needs every single[r] one of them to stay fantasy relevant.  Burn!  But relevant indeed, as his slash in that time is 11.7/3.1/1.6/1.1/0.6.  Not setting the world on fire, but for your fringe-guys – especially in weekly leagues – giving you a little of something is better than a lot of nothing.  Award winning advice right there!  Along with the multi-cat, is at 1.5 treys and 82% FT shooting since the break.  Dibbling in this, dabbling in that, and next thing you know he’s someone you trust more than, I dunno, maybe even Brandon Jennings who couldn’t find the hole last night.  “Tie in a joke from the beginning, tie in a joke from the beginning!”  Shut up 13-year-old inner monologue!  Here’s what else I saw in NBA action from last night:

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Oh man, rough night for matt’s Pacers!  Al Jefferson just went absolutely bonkers, adding to his stretch of bonkertude giving Jefferson owners a huge boost for the playoffs.  Owning Roy Hibbert like an Entertainment 720 entrepreneur, Big Al shot 16-25 in a full multi-cat dance party of 34/8/3/1/1 and even hit a three!  Only his sixth of his career to pepper all the cats.  Over his last 3, Jefferson has hit 44 of 65 shots for a very high volume 67.7 FG%.  Jefferson hasn’t played this well since his Minnesota days, and you can even argue this has been a career year.  Which for a guy with the history Jefferson has put down in the stat sheets is really saying something considering how rocky it all started.  Remember the ankle issue that had him sit a lot of games?  Then the slow start?  Because I sure do, and I steadfastly said “Hold me tighter baby!”  Is that a song?  I feel like there’s something close to that… Anyway, hopefully you were able to buy low or weather the storm and now you’re reaping some big man stats like it’s the 90s.  We miss you David Robinson!  Two losses in a row for the Pacers, right after barely beating the Jazz.  The Heat are now only 1.5 games behind, and might be taking the Pacers piece of the home-court advantage pie!  Here’s what else I saw last night in fantasy hoops:

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No, you’re not accidentally on baseball and we’re not reviewing Roger Maris and Mickey Mantle’s little HBO romp. Wait, why does LeBron James get an asterisk then?!  I think the mask is helping him.  It’s like the Jim Carrey movie.  Without it he’s a nothing out there – –  dammit, metaphors and parallels just aren’t working today!  Unless the improbable scenario in which you pounded em hard at happy hour, passed out before tipoffs last night, stumbled to your computer when you awoke this morning, and Razzball Basketball is your first NBA news choice, then you probably saw what BronBron did last night.  I for one fully endorse the aforementioned scenario, see you at happy hour after work!  LeBron went bob-bonkers on the bob-Bobcats for 61 points shooting 22-33, 8-10 from deep, and 9-12 from the stripe.  Chipped in 7 boards and 5 dimes on top of it.  The gap Kevin Durant had over King James is slowly deteriorating as MaskBron is taking over Gotham City.  Now, it did help that there was no Dwyane Wade (not that it would’ve made that much of a difference), but KD is still your numero uno.  Twin towers!  I bet 50% of fantasy H2H title matchups will pit LeBron vs. KD.  Fantasy basketball is too top heavy followed by a bunch of bastard children.  It’s turning into Shawn Kemp!  Zing!  Here’s what else I saw last night in NBA action:

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So, the Feds are after you.  Your Ponzi scheme and billions of dollars are up for seizure.  Well, that, or your $20 league dues and your friends sending you obnoxious texts about how you’re not going to the playoffs.  So if you’re in H2H and in this shortened week, what is a Madoff to do?  How about putting in a quick grab of Chris Kaman, who has erected himself into surging fantasy relevance.  Too far JB!  A raging 25/14/4/1/3 line last night, taking a whopping team-high 24 shots.  That’s now three straight games of at least 17 Pts, 8 Rebs, 3 Asts and 2 Blks.  That’s the floor!  While tonight’s slate is pretty jam-packed, Thursday is a light one.  With the Lakers one of the few teams in action, Kaman could really make the difference this week for ya in Pts and Blks.  While he does have a shelf life whence Pau Gasol returns, if Gasol is indeed traded I think Kaman has played well enough to stick.  Of course you never know with Doh-toni, but Robert Sacre isn’t exactly a guy to be developed for a long-term future and they don’t have any other true 5s.  So don’t be afraid to stash some of your free cash in the Kaman islands.  While he is owned in 43% of Yahoo leagues already (a bit shocking to me it had hopped up that fast), there’s plenty of IRS-free banks left to stash him up.  Here’s what else I saw last night across fantasy hoops:

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Sometimes there’s not much you can do to affect your situation. If you’re reading this, digging this deep into the murky ether of the worldwide inter-webs for fantasy basketball advice, I’m sure you’ve had a daydream or two about being an NBA baller. We both know, however, for you and I, it wasn’t about not getting enough shots up after practice that held us out of the Association, we didn’t have the talent, pure and simple. But, if you’re petty like me, you might take some ironic comfort in knowing that even some of the Ballers in the NBA get shafted as well. Take Kyle Lowry, for example. He gets snubbed for the All Star game, then snubbed for the replacement players, THEN gets named Eastern conference player of the week, and then receives the worst call of the year, just to burst his bubble. That is a travesty of injustice, and while I’m not shedding any tears for Kyle inherently, it just goes to show that even the elite get effed with. There is a karmic balance going on, people, stop pretending there isn’t, and start paying it forward, eat your vegetables, and help old ladies across the street.

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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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