Sorry Bargs, it’s not “Il Mago” you’re “Il Diva”. After whining about playing time in Toronto saying he wanted to play somewhere warmer to the Italian media, the obvious answer is the tropical climate of New York City. Il Diva disappeared in his final year in Toronto, playing under 30 minutes a game for the first time since 07-08. His FG% fell to a career-second worse, the 3PT% second worst and tied a career-worst in rebounding. After 35 games, they cut open his elbow and he cut his ties with the great country of Canadia (sp?). Enter 2013-14 and Bargnani was coming off the bench, and Knicks fans were even booing him after one quarter. Welcome to the Big Apple! I saw some early Knicks action as well, and Bargnani looked as bad as Amar’e Stoudemire. Hey-o! But then Tyson Chandler went down with the broken leg, thrusting Il Diva into a starting role. At that point, I put no stock in either Bargs or Amar’e, but Bargnani has been able to prove something to me: he needs big minutes to be able to do anything. And it’s not a per/48 thing, it’s getting comfortable in the game. Through this season, in the 5 games he’s under 30 minutes he’s shooting 48.8% for 10.2/1.4/0.4 with 0.8 threes a game. And didn’t log a single block. In 3 games over 30 minutes, he’s 53.8% 23/7.7/1.7 2.3 Blks and 2.7 threes a game. Even at per/48 rates and taking into account the small sample, the disparity is shocking. Since Chandler is out a good while healing up the broken leg and Amar’e is just a huge contract sitting on the bench, Bargnani is going to get huge minutes (almost always over 30) and continue this run. “Let me play lots or else I stand around!” Must own in all leagues, a statement I made last week and confirmed with another 24/4 line with three threes and a block last night. Here’s what else I saw in last night’s action:Please, blog, may I have some more?
In yet another bad turn for fantasy top-100 Cs, JaVale McGee joins the triage with Tyson Chandler as centers with broken legs. However unlike Chandler with the impact fracture, McGee discovered a stress fracture in his tibia with the ominous “out indefinitely” declaration. It’s a very tough break (ugh) for the Nuggets and fantasy owners hoping to see stat lines of 10/10/5 when the Nuggets were on the slate. All joking aside, I hate seeing players get injuries and it’s my least favorite open in news recaps in any sport. There are a select few that are funny (my favorite will always be Bartolo Colon trying to swing for the fences and throwing out his back, and I have little sympathy because he’s a roider), but I wish McGee a speedy recovery. For fantasy, he’s droppable in virtually all leagues. A tall guy with a stress fracture isn’t swell, plus he was only playing 16 minutes a game anyway. J.J. Hickson and Tomfey Mozgov get immediate boosts in value, Mozgov is decent when he’s not getting posterized, but Hickson I think is the biggest takeaway and probably should be scooped up in most leagues if he’s not owned already. He proved he can be valuable with starting minutes and is a quality big man. Here’s some other headlines from over the weekend:Please, blog, may I have some more?
After a very tough start to his season going 2-14 in his first two games, Evan Fournier finally found his stroke last night going 5-10 (2-3 3PTM) for a 12/3/2 line in a season high 25 minutes. If you’re like me, you’re a Fournier virgin in all leagues. Sure he’s way off the map (I don’t know where France is!), but I have a feeling he could surprise later on in the season. In the last 8 games of 2012-13, Fournier went 11.5 Pts (0.9 3PTM) 2.3 Rebs 2.8 Asts 1.4 Stls while shooting 50% from the field and 92.9% from the stripe in only 23 minutes a game. Now that was on a playoff team, resting some stars – sure, but this Nuggets team is a mess right now. I know they just beat the Hawks, but a lineup starting Randy Foye and Jordan Hamilton (of course Wilson Chandler and Danilo Gallinari are on the shelf), Fournier could get late season run as I highly doubt the Nuggets make the playoffs. He’s a great off-the-radar multi-cat guy to keep your eye on especially in deeper leagues as we start getting into the meat of the season. Here’s what else I saw 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?
Some music fans believe the 1982 Fleetwood Mac album “Mirage” got its name because Lindsey, Stevie, Christine, John and Mick hated each other, were trying to pass off a dated band as relevant, recorded it while whacked out on assorted liquids and/or substances, or all of the above.
While any of this could be true, the opinion here is that “Mirage” is a criminally underrated album by an often derided band. Can they be as corny as Nick Young’s early 2012-2013 ’do? You bet ya. But here, without trying, they actually pull off a “mirage” that’s a good one and not one that, say, Spike in “Tom & Jerry” might have had where he mistook Tom for a giant hambone.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Against the terrible Bobcats and with everyone on the Knicks benched, Chris Copeland just went off. He’s always been a scorer, but made the Bobcats wish they had this guy starting all year instead of playing inconsistent minutes for the Knickerbockers. Copeland went 12-25 (4-8 3PTM) for 32 Pts 7 Rebs 2 Asts and 1 Stl. He played all but 1 minute of this game with all your New York regulars sitting this one out. I think he’s a must start in Wednesday’s finale.
The end of the NBA regular season is always rife with crazy games like this. So I’m going to try and hit on all the guys that can make an impact for you tonight as streamers and Wednesday:Please, blog, may I have some more?
If you’ve been keeping up with me since I took over the basketball reigns here for Razzball Nation, you know I’ve had two guys I’ve been all about. Tobias Harris and Jonas Valanciunas. Yes the luminescent Lithuanian (LL). Not Latvian! Easy mistake… OK, so I’m not one to talk, I’m paler than an Icelander living in Seattle. But it sounded cool when I made it up.
At the ripe young age of 20, Valanciunas is owning the post, and is doing a Tyler Hansbrough impression of what Psycho-T did in college, just throwing up shizz and getting to the line. LL (see, this is much better than typing his name correctly every time) has been scoring double-digits a night, but hit his career-high yesterday with 24 in 41 minutes. The crazy thing is, he took only 7 shots! Went 16-18 at the free throw line for a splendid line of 24-10-1-1-2. I know pounding Nene and the rest of the Wiz bigs down low isn’t exactly a huge accomplishment, but I’m gonna be all over him for next year. And if for some reason he’s available in your league, nab him for your championship run.
Here’s what else went down across the NBA last night:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Let’s face it. It’s unlikely that LeBron or KD are available on your waiver, and nobody in their right mind is gonna trade ‘em to you. So adjust your expectations accordingly. You’re not taking the prom queen home tonight, but some of these fillies can still put out, and you can still pretend that the one you took home kinda does look like LBJ in the pale moonlight. Here are one man’s brain droppings on who to grab, and who to sell.Please, blog, may I have some more?
I’ve heard an incredible buzz surrounding the All-Star Game, which is amazing considering the last person who enjoyed an all-star game died in 1997. Well, I hope the ASG has reinvigorated people’s interest in basketball. For those who like to press their luck and test their skill, DraftKings has an amazing contest going on.Please, blog, may I have some more?
With Jose Calderon coming to Detroit, there’s a question of who will lose out. The Pistons are already pretty guard heavy, so adding another quality guard makes sense. Despite Brandon Knight‘s 7/1/4 line, he has been doing extremely well and should continue to start.Please, blog, may I have some more?