Stephen Curry‘s ankle used up its final sick day of the year, because unlike weak ankles themselves, sick days don’t roll over. (Boom! Nailed it.) Dwyane Wade? His left foot caused an early exit. Then a quarter later, his right foot told his left to stop being such a damn sissy, strap on an extra sock and get back out there. Wade told both feet he hates it when they fight and then re-entered the game to hit the game-winner against Charlotte. Eric Gordon didn’t play because of a swollen knee he didn’t bother telling anyone about. I’m assuming two things here: 1) Eric Gordon owns a bunk bed and sleeps on the top, 2) last night he fell of it – which is embarrassing – and the team came up with some bogus tale of a basketball-related bruise, and 3) I said there were two assumptions. You have no business inquiring about number three. Jrue Holiday mashed his knee and silently left the game. He’s likely to return Friday. And as if losing four top 10 guards wasn’t enough, I’ll throw in a Mike Conley, who went down with a sprain less than a minute into his match against OKC, and George Hill, who is shooting .154 in two games this season. … Wait. I’ve been told George Hill is not injured. Really? Are you sure? Because he really seems injured. Ugh. Anyway, if you’re wondering how to vulture these injuries, your pickups are as follows: Jarrett Jack (21/4/9, with 2 blk; will find a way to play 52 minutes a game), Lou Williams (if Holiday can’t go, but all signs point to him being able to, uh, go), Jeremy Pargo (looked like Collison two years ago), Marco Belinelli (looks like Marco Belinelli – always), James Jones (if Wade’s left dog is barking at him tomorrow) and Ish Smith, in that order. Now that all that unpleasantness is out of the way, here’s s’more fantasy basketball goings-on from last night.
James Johnson – 6/8/2, with 6 stls and 2 blks. He’s averaging 5.5/ 7/3.5, with 4 stls and 2.5 blks in his first two games of the season. Did you miss grabbing Andre Iguodala in the draft? Want another chance at him (minus a few field-goals)? Here you go. I totally believe, with the exception of maybe these steals, he can do this all year and more if he overtakes Rasual Butler in the starting lineup.
DeMar DeRozan – Sank two threes. He’s never made two threes in one game before. He’s only made nine threes in total before tonight. That’s it. I just like mentioning weird things. Speaking of which: Corey Maggette!
Corey Maggette – Didn’t throw in a single point during Charlotte’s 60-point first half against the Heat. It’s probably harder to go 0-for-8 than 8-for-8 in this league. Everyone in the NBA is paid to be there and they’re paid to be there because they are among the best at what they do. Maggette is paid to score. Therefore it’s not ridiculous to say he’s among the best in the world at doing so. It would be considered impressive if he went 8-for-8, but not unthinkable. It’s unthinkable that he’d unsuccessfully put the biscuit in the basket against a team that hasn’t shown this season that it can stop anyone from doing so.
Boris Diaw – 16/16/8 and now he’s averaging 12.5/12/9.5. I’m confident he’ll keep up this pace all season. I don’t own him in any leagues, so either I’m right or I’m happy. And THAT’S how you hedge a bet, sister!
Gerald Henderson – 21/4/4, with a three, two blocks and two steals. He’s had a couple great games and all of a sudden he’s gotten the “Hendo” nickname. I’m partial toward Hender’s Game, but that’s because I believe there is a place for science-fiction references in basketball, even though no one else does.
Jordan Crawford – Shot 0-for-6 from the field and ended with one point in 22 minutes. Nick Young, on the other hand, finished with 21 in 32 minutes. Not only that, he doled out four assists. FOUR! /puts hands on hips and looks around\ FOUR!
Marvin Williams – 17/8, with a pair of threes, a couple of steals and a block because everybody enjoys a good block now and again. He’s averaging 15.5/8.5, with 2 3ptm and 2.5 stls in two weird games to start the season. He’s playing like he’s been expected to play for three years. And because he hasn’t played that way in these last three years, I’m guessing we’re in for a regression sooner than later.
Ramon Sessions – Sessions had six assists, or 24 Nick Young Assists™. His final line: 16/7/6 in 28 minutes. Another blowout, this time in Cleveland’s favor. Play him if you own him, but these last two games have been coincidental flukes.
Brandon Knight – 23 points on 13 shots, six dimes and three threes. The only downside to the guy is that his name is Brandon. I don’t trust Brandons or guys who spell their name as “Geoffrey.”
Austin Daye – Talk about night and day, Austin is the anti-Knight. Drop him until he shows anyone anything.
Jeremy Pargo – 15/3/7, with a pair of steals. MAGNOFALACIO! Minutes Ain’t Got No Face As Long As Conley Is Out. Sorry, Grey.
Elton Brand – Took only seven shots against possibly the worst team in the West; made only two of them. He’s averaging 7/8.5/2 in his first two games. Let’s move on. It’s stinging my nostrils and I’m getting dizzy.
Evan Turner – 12/7/2, with a steal. He’s averaging 11/5.5/2, with a steal in his first two games. This is technically an improvement over last year (so far), but remember: E.T. phoned in a 16/7/4, 1 block game in almost 31 minutes in his second game last season. What I’m saying is, let’s talk in February.
Robin Lopez – 7/6/3, in 20 minutes. If I were holding a metaphorical sunflower, it would comically droop now.
Steve Nash – 4/0/1, 6 tov in 17 minutes and he’s not hurt. … … … His worst game last season was 4/0/1, with 2 tovs.
Derrick Favors – 2/10, with 3 tovs in 17 minutes. He’s spraying his game with weak sauce. Bench him if you’re in a deep league, drop him if you’re in a shallow. Make him show you something. Millsap is the stream if you’re into streaming. Actually, Favors was the stream, but it didn’t work out. That’ll teach you to stream on Millsap.
Alec Burks – 15 points and a steal in 10 minutes. If I had a fu-manchu, you best believe I’d be stroking it in anticipation of watching Burks’ next few games. I don’t, so I won’t. But if I did, I would.
Brandon Rush – Saw 25+ minutes last night, including the end of the game alongside Monta Ellis. Although he ended with 19/5 with a couple of threes and a couple of steals, I wouldn’t rush (pun!) to grab him. He’s splitting time with Ish Smith (11/6/4, with 2 steals) until Curry returns or “re-curries” if you’re into portmanteaus. Also, this line came while Bibby was guarding him. That’s worth something. Unless you’re Bibby. Then it’s not worth much.