So I’m watching the Bulls and Clip last night, Blake Griffin starts hot, then sorta melds into his normal role. BORING! Virtually 20/10 every night, and after scoring 6 early, it looked like your typical BG evening – as plain and simple as a Kia. With his line at 18/11/2/0/2, Blake was like, “aight, time to either get a Razzball mention for 5-6 blocks, or swing tryin’!” He became a medieval dentist swinging at Taj Gibson, getting this flagrant 2 for a hit that would make Holly Holm proud. I’m not the biggest Taj fan, but he mouths “I’m OK” even though he easily could’ve lost 4 teeth. Can’t keep him down! Should’ve been cast in Creed… Even with the premature exit, Griffin’s line was solid and we’re seeing some microscopic improvements to his game that could make 2015-16 a career year. But when you’re right at career-norms and performing right at draft day value, it’s tough to get a lot of attention unless you pop someone right in the weasel. And with the comradery helping Taj up and you could make the argument it was a legit block attempt, he’s certainly not missing any games due to a suspension. So ride your boring, reliable ol’ Kia and enjoy consistency. Here’s what else went down last night in fantasy basketball:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Matt Barnes capped off the Memphis Grizzlies comeback victory over the Pistons, by drilling a half court shot with 1.1 seconds left in the game. It’s probably the best mood that Barnes has been in all season. I don’t think Derek Fisher will have to worry about getting punched this week..
I was a bit surprised that Barnes took the shot considering there were still a few ticks on the clock when he chucked it up. Either way, it was a nice finish to a nice game from Barnes (8 points, 11 rebounds, and 3 assists in 30 minutes). The journeyman forward has always been a borderline fantasy player for his ability to do a little bit of everything.
Barnes had a nice string of games at the end of November, but now that Zach Randolph is back (21 points and 16 rebounds), Barnes has seen his minutes decrease. He should probably be dropped in 10 and 12 team leagues, but should continue to be monitored, should he see around 30 minutes a night.Please, blog, may I have some more?
On a weekend where elite guys did elite things – we got served more 40-burgers than a McDonalds – I’m going to open this Monday morning a little further down the bunnyhole. It may be “rabbit” hole, but it sounded dirtier my way…
When Al Jefferson went down with his calf strain (he’s still out at least another 1-2 weeks), I clowned the Hornets for their “three-headed” monster for C minutes. I joked it was a nice way of saying none were any good. Kinda like saying the “three-headed monster” of good M. Night Shyamalan movies. Especially Frank the Stank, as Michael Jordan’s never-ending conquest of building an NCAA dream team continues to keep the Charlotte franchise in the awful-to-mediocre range. At least Spencer Hawes looks OK out there, putting up decent lines in 20+ minutes the past two Hornets games. But watching the Hornets against the Bulls on Saturday – I was mad impressed by Cody Zeller. Took the lion’s share of PT playing 32 minutes, and went 17/8/2/1/1 on 6-10 FG (5-7 FT) with no TO. And it wasn’t a cupcake matchup either against Pau Gasol. Although Gasol wouldn’t get that joke, let’s say “it wasn’t a flan matchup.” Just at the eye level, he was cutting to the basket with great speed, finished strong at the rim with a few dunks, and took jumpers confidently. I think the Hornets wanted someone to step up with Big Al down, and they’ve found their guy. Now this would only be a medium-term pickup in 12ers, plus the schedule is going to be a crazy test. Hornets get DET, MIA then @MEM the next three, so Zeller is going to have to D up Andre Drummond, Hassan Whiteside, then Marc Gasol. Eesh. At least the Gasol one is more his player-type… And it’s not like Hawes or Frank Kaminsky is going to play any better against those beasts… So if you’re looking for a little help up front without the big blocks upside, Zeller is worth a look. Here’s what else went down over the weekend in fantasy hoops action, including The 7 Ahead for week 7:Please, blog, may I have some more?
After a tough loss in Detroit, it’s safe to say things have yet to take flight for this year’s Houston Rockets. While many came into the season thinking Houston’s out-of-this-world lineup had the potential to challenge the incumbent Golden State Warriors for the title as best team in the West, those dreams came crashing back to earth weeks ago (and Kevin McHale is still searching through the wreckage for the cause of the incident). Last night’s struggles are just another indication of this season’s overall trend: the Houston Rockets are looking more like Team Rocket when they step on the court.
Even a near triple double from James Harden (29 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists) wasn’t enough for Houston to surmount a surprising Pistons squad. With Harden passing 40 minutes for the fourth straight game, it’s looking like the Rockets are going to be riding their thoroughbred until the saddle cracks. In fairness, a monster game from Harden is probably the best chance Houston has to win every night, but for fantasy owners, the team’s struggle bodes well for the Beard’s outlook. Harden is going to score in abundance while racking up rebounds, assists, 3s, and steals as Houston fights to stay in the playoff hunt early. I think these past five games are particularly telling for the current state of the team as well as Harden’s prospects for the next few weeks as they try to right the ship (or the rocket).Please, blog, may I have some more?
Hoops fans were treated to a pretty entertaining six-game slate on Tuesday night, and those who were able to stay awake into the wee hours of Wednesday morning (for us East coasters anyways), saw history made at Oracle Arena. The Golden State Warriors set a new benchmark for best record to start an NBA season by winning their sixteenth straight game to open the 2015-2016 campaign.
For all intents and purposes, the game between the Warriors and the visiting Lakers was over before it started. GSW entered the contest as 17-point favorites and it took them all of 10 and a half minutes to cover that number. The Dubs were up 34 after three quarters and LA had the look of a team that might as well have just stayed home – they walked in defeated. (Aside: Byron Scott needs to go. Awful, awful ball coach.)
Unfortunately the blowout factor was in full effect as none of the Warriors starters were needed in the fourth quarter, evidenced by Stephen Curry and Draymond Green playing a game-high 30 minutes each. However, in honor of this Golden State team destroying the league so far this season, here are the lines for each of their starters tonight:
- Chef Curry – 24/4/9/2/0, four triples, zero TOs
- Klay Thompson – 11/3/2/0/1, two triples, one TO
- Harrison Barnes – 8/2/1/0/0, two triples, one TO
- Draymond Green – 18/7/5/1/2, two triples, 7-11 FGs
- Andrew Bogut – 8/7/2/0/2, 4-7 FGs, zero TOs
Those are pretty pedestrian numbers (relative to each player’s typical contributions this year), but these are the types of lines that we’ll occasionally see with a team as dominant as the Warriors. For season-long owners you just have to move on to the next game and hope it’s a more competitive affair. And for DFS players, you know for the future to fade GSW players on nights when they’re huge favorites as the main guys won’t be needed for the full 48. At some point we’ll also have to keep an eye out for DNP-Rest days, though I can’t imagine that will happen until Golden State loses their first game. (For the record, the teams standing in the way of a 28-0 Warriors team hosting the Cleveland LeBrons on Christmas Day are: Phoenix twice, Sacramento, Utah twice, Charlotte, Toronto, Brooklyn, Indiana, and Milwaukee twice. Seriously – who of those teams is scaring you if you’re the Dubs?)
Let’s take a look at the non-Bay Area happenings on Tuesday night…Please, blog, may I have some more?
So I think I used that title a couple of years ago in the season intro post, did something similar last year, and was thinking of something new this season… But F it! I’m too excited, IT ALL STARTS HERE BABY!
The 2015-16 season starts tonight, with the Pistons going at the Hawks, Pelicans going at the champ Warriors, and the bigun – Cavs at Bulls. A very nice slate to kick it off, but I wanted Nets at 76ers! That’s a premiere matchup right there! All of our hopes and dreams for the year start this evening (hyperbole police are after me!), with my optimism for an REL title, everyone’s yearning for the RCL title, and my year-long nervousness my ranks look good in April. Would it be narcissistic if I win the RCL title to put myself in the RCL hall of fame?! It would be like Heisman awarding himself the first Heisman! Or something like that… I’m all talk though, we all know Slim is going to be in the top-10 yet again with me lower on the master table in disdain…
If you missed it yesterday afternoon, our 15-16 lineup features several awesome new writers and you can check out our weekly schedule of content for the season. The size of that hyperlink mimics my excitement for our articles this year! Trust me, I’m not compensating for something…
And I’d like to thank all of you out there in Razzball Nation for bringing legitimacy to the phrase/cliche I’ve used on the kickoff post for three straight years: 15-16 is going to be our biggest year yet! We’ve grown a ton, and I couldn’t be more thankful to you readers and commenters. Can’t wait for opening tip… LET’S GET THIS GOIN’! Here’s a few thoughts on the opening night matchups:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Yikes. After an injury-plagued 14-15 season where virtually every starter missed a good chunk of time, the injury bug hath reared it’s ugly head yet again for the Pelicans. I need comfort! Time to shame eat 50 beignets!
After Jrue Holiday‘s slow recovery from another stress reaction in his leg, the Pelicans plan to limit him to 15 minutes a game until January and sit him on back-to-backs. Then Norris Cole suffered a high-ankle sprain a little over a week ago, and given an “up to 6 weeks” timetable. And right when the Tyreke Evans buzz couldn’t get louder, we get hit with news on The Blindside (starring Sandra Bullock) that he had arthroscopic knee surgery and will be out 6-8 weeks. The Pelicans need a new conditioning staff! Hopefully this gets all the injuries out of the team’s system and we see 82 games of Brow… Anyway, the Pelicans signed Nate Robinson late last week, and all the sudden he’s looking at starting minutes to open the season – starting when Jrue sits and playing a ton off the bench after Jrue’s 15 allotted minutes. Lord help me, but I actually drafted him in the JB vs. Slim RCL last night… All he needs to do is put it within 15 feet of Brow and he could fall into 5 assists with the upside for a few 3s and some points with low TO (18 Pts last night, but 0 AST and 4 TO – had 9 dimes previous 2 games with only 3 TO, TO isn’t usually an issue). It’s like Jose Calderon, but with a few more minutes. Ugh, I just threw up in my mouth a little with that comp though… Here’s what else has gone down over the past few days in preseason action:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Ah, the almost-studlies. The “still can’t quite miss, but you can start reaching round.” …Almost sounds like I said reach around…
This is where the sommeliers really can knock their drafts out of the park – it’s all about the pairings. You don’t serve red wine with fish, you cro-magnon! But what’s great about fantasy hoops as opposed to a pretentious French restaurant is there’s very few pairings that can go wrong. I mean your first rounder is awesome and your second rounder awesome with it! I know a lot of people like the FT punt builds, but really the only pairing I can’t see doing is going big-big. There’s a ton of FT-punt bigs littered through the first 4-5 rounds, so I think you can still punt, but start with a LeBron James/Draymond Green pair, then PG/C in 3/4. I’m sure Slim and I will work on more culinary pairings as we go through the ranks and do some mocks on the Podcast, as we attempt to put together the best fine dining experience… I just wanna avoid the friggin’ snails! Here’s the Top 20 for the 2015-16 Fantasy Basketball Season.Please, blog, may I have some more?
Things move fast in Hollywood! After Dwyane Wade sold the sitcom rights of his life to Fox, he’s already been casted to star in Alexander Payne’s sequel Sideways. Apparently it’s about an over-the-hill basketball player who chugs four bottles of wine before playing the Bulls….
Twas a rough one for D-Wade hitting only 4-20 (420!) from the field, putting up 9/3/3 with 5 TO last night. Awesome defense by my boyfriend Tony Snell! Played 38 minutes of fantasy-awfulness, but his D was smothering! While I’m usually good with learning from pictures, from what I gathered in the playoff picture the Heat are now 1.5 games out of the playoffs. I may have seen the picture wrong, I mean that mother F dress was blue! Oh great, we’re back on that again… Anyway, Wade might only have one game left in him if the Heat get knocked out of the playoff picture, and I think is expendable in Roto and H2H leagues running through Wednesday. No reason to keep some dead weight from winning your title, and keeping you from that Sandra Oh-face! Here’s what else went down last night in fantasy hoops action:Please, blog, may I have some more?
Fresh off surviving the 2014-15 Razzies with his nomination for worst coach, Brad Stevens only kinda-sorta did something right last night… Yo Brad, how about you have Marcus Smart take some other shots than 3s (1-5 FG with 1-4 3PTM last night)?!
But despite the Celtics’ horrific mismanaging of Smart, Stevens did run Isaiah Thomas a whopping one-more-minute than Smart, and IT2/3 went nuts for 34/3/6 on 10-17 FG (4-8 3PTM 10-11 FT). In a 10-point win, you don’t run IT2/3 over 30 minutes with a +35?! Only got to 29:47 last night, but you’ll take it when he’s at at least 23 Pts, 2 treys and 4 3PTM the past three games. Those are the floors! Other than the %s (he is shooting a ton more though), IT2/3 has really improved since changing into green, and I think that slow start in Phoenix might make him a value next year. IT2/3, the Hoppin’ Leprechaun! That might have to be his full official Razzball nickname… Here’s what else went down last night in fantasy basketball action:Please, blog, may I have some more?