I’ve got a little story to tell you today. I think I’ll call it a parable. Here it goes… A few days ago I was at the gas station and I was approached by a guy who claimed he couldn’t afford gas to get home. If you have ever seen a meth addict in their 20′s it isn’t a pretty sight. He was packing something into his cigarette and I didn’t stop to question what it was. Was I a little disgusted, sure. Would I be enabling him if I helped him with a couple of bucks for gas? Probably. In the end I walked inside and payed $5 for him to have some gas. He was incredibly grateful and I felt pretty good that I could help. In the end sure I lost a couple of bucks but I was able to offer assistance and for me that was more important at that time. This is how I see most fantasy teams. Most managers see how many points a player is scoring and feel like they can’t be without it. Meanwhile they regularly lose the assist category. If we could all be a little less of a meth addict, I mean a points addict, and gain a few assists we usually find that we will win more categories, more frequently.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 playoffs are coming, do you have a point guard emergency? Mo Williams consistency driving you insane? Kyrie Irving just not cutting it since his return? Steve Nash can’t stay on the floor? Tony Parker goes down! Well according to Lt. Dangle there might be a new sheriff in Orlando, all he needs is a killer ‘stache. Beno Udrih was Udraining shots from all over the floor Friday night and scored 27 points (10-17 FG) with 5 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 steals and hit 3 shots from beyond the arc. Beno may have that mustache in him after all. Jameer Nelson missed his fourth straight game and Beno got the nod again. In four games starting with Nelson out, Udrih is averaging 19.5 points, 7.3 assists, 4 rebounds, 1.75 steals and 2.5 threes a game. BENOthatswhatImtalkingabout Udrih! He played 36 minutes Friday night and should continue to find plenty of time on the floor even when (if) Jameer Nelson (ever) returns. If I have a playoff point guard emergency I’m picking up Udrih, Beno-911 should provide enough points and assists to make him an asset in your fantasy playoffs.
Here’s what else happened in basketball Friday night:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Shaun Livingston had another nice game Friday night with 13 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals in 38 minutes. If you’re waiting for Kyrie Irving to return and save your team, you’re just as sad and depressing as every other Cavs fan and you may be disappointed. Don’t wait till its too late, any player is better than an injured player in the playoffs because injured players don’t play! Fact! Meanwhile, Shaun Livingston is just 12% owned and averaging 12.5 points, 6 assists and 3.5 rebounds in two games starting since Irving went down. He also chipped in 4 steals and a block in that span. Livingston is not a huge scorer, but he could provide decent value in some other categories and will get plenty of burn in the Cleveland back court if you are looking for a player to help down the stretch.
Here’s what else happened in fantasy basketball Friday night:Please, blog, may I have some more?
I’ve seen enough. Injury prone label be damned, Stephen Curry rises to the second tier of the point guard rankings. I’ve always loved the talent but that ankle injury is frightening (I drafted him in the 2nd round last year…sigh). Through 25 games this year Curry has stayed healthy and hasn’t missed a start. He’s also averaging 19.4 points (career high), 4.1 boards, 6.4 assists (career high), 1.6 steals, 2.6 three’s (career high), 89.7% FT, and 42.2% FG (career low). Yeah that’s right, 19.4 points on a career low FG… and it’s not even close to his second lowest percent of 46.2% his rookie season. The guy is a stud and COULD be better if his FG% rises some. Did I also mention his 3P% is a career low 41.7%? These percentages will keep rising, especially since Klay Thompson has regained some of his shooting touch. If you have Curry, you’re probably sitting in a good place because of the draft value you got for him.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Now that the rust is coming off the season (except for you Steve Nash), we’ll be splitting the Wednesday posts into morning (for recaps) and afternoon (for the tiers). Check out the previous Centers, Forwards, and Guards tiers. This week we’ll jump right into the guards.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Arguably, steals are the most difficult stat to obtain. You’d think solid defense would lead to more takeaway opportunities, but this is a shooting league, so maybe there is no solid defense. Anyway, this is a look at the seven (eligible) players with the best steals ratios with under 50% ownership.Please, blog, may I have some more?
I considered leading with Greg Monroe and his triple double (and in some ways, I just did), but I decided to comment about Jrue Holiday. He has been off to a great start this season, and last night he put up 14 points, 5 rebounds, 12 assists and a block.Please, blog, may I have some more?
New this year to the basketball side of Razzball is updated tier rankings throughout the season. Every Wednesday morning I’ll update my tiers on a rotating basis for guards, forwards, and centers (i.e. Guards this week, Forwards next week, etc.) The first run through of tiered rankings may not differ much from my original rankings because there haven’t been many games played. Don’t like it? Well there will be no vote on this since this is a dictatorship. However, you can destroy me in the comments as much as you please.Please, blog, may I have some more?