Back from Turkey Day, Joel and Son wonder when it’s too early to start worrying about roto percentages and then take a deep dive into Boston’s starting five. Should managers feel burned about spending a first-round pick on Tatum? Will Porizingis’ efficiency gains hold? Is there any hope for Jrue Holiday and Jaylen Brown? https://api.spreaker.com/v2/episodes/57836560/download.mp3Podcast: […]

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The Bergens are coming, AHHH. The Bergens are coming, AHHH. The Bergens are coming, AHHH. The Bergens are coming, AHHH. 

For those without kids, that’s Branch in “Trolls” overreacting because he’s scared of success (and friendship), just like so many fantasy basketball players will overreact to the first couple games, when regular bench rotations guys will be proclaimed breakouts of the season, and busts will be said to abound as the rust gets knocked off the boots. 

However, while we definitely don’t want to overreact, let’s remember: Branch ended up being right. You don’t want to be caught with that average penny stock and telling yourself, “any day now, it’s gunna go crazy!” [Checks portfolio, sighs with depression, gets back to basketball.] Keep an eye on minutes, rotations and usage more than the general stat lines in these early going. 

And with that piece of nonsensical advice, let’s get on with the show! Here’s what caught my eye in the 12 games of the unofficial official opening night in The Association.

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Welcome to the 2023-24 Fantasy Rankings! We’ll continue this wonderful (is it? Yes!) journey with other positions and formats, including all positional rankings for both Roto and Points leagues, and then of course wrapping it all up with our Dynasty Rankings. What will be released is just the pure rankings; analysis and other amazing draft preparational content (ooooh, sounds so official) will be released after our aforementioned rankings “journey”. Remember, it’s not about the destination, but the friends we made along the way! Especially if it ends in a Fantasy Championship, in which case, it is sorta-kinda about the destination, which is also fine. Because who cares about friends when you can hoist a trophy in their general direction? I mean, I’m talking both literally and figuratively here folks. Just as long as you hoist, it counts. As they say, it’s all about the hoisting… (I think.)

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20 years ago, UPS had an ad campaign with the slogan, “What can Brown do for you?” 

Brown says: Make your life easier

Brown tells me that you have all the choices you want

Brown says to me: Get your shipments to your customers, when they need it and where they need it

Brown says: Relax, we’ll get it done

Brown says: How about some more pie?

Brown didn’t say that

What a stupid ass commercial but it serves our purpose today because Jaylen Brown freaking delivered the goods on Sunday.

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As Adam Schefter and Ian Rapoport fire off one “BREAKING” tweet after another, I just have to be honest: Writing about basketball tonight sort of feels like being the undercard for a Jon Jones fight. Is anyone gonna care about the NBA tonight, while the NFL free agency frenzy carries on deep into the wee hours?

NO? Well, I’ll just go ahead and MAKE you care. Didn’t mean to sound like Tony Soprano, sorry. Let’s get into my NBA Wednesday fantasy basketball notes and analysis.

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If you’ve been reading my NBA Wednesday fantasy recaps throughout the season, then you’ve probably noticed that I like to give a different team the focus each and every week. Gotta keep it fresh for you, right?

Well, this week I’m happy to finally land on the New Orleans Pelicans, one of the most interesting teams in the entire NBA. To me, the Pelicans are the No. 1 what if? team in the league. What if they could ever keep superstar Zion Williamson (hamstring this time) healthy? What if they could ever roll out their optimal starting lineup: C.J. McCollum, Brandon Ingram, Herbert Jones, Zion and Jonas Valanciunas? What if Jones (24 years old), Trey Murphy III (22) and Dyson Daniels (19) all happen to pan out? There are a lot of different ways things could potentially work out for these young Pelicans, but none of those ways have come to fruition just yet.

But Wednesday marked a step in the right direction, as the pesky Pelicans booked a huge 113-106 win over the reeling Dallas Mavericks. With the victory, New Orleans stayed a half-game ahead of the talented young Thunder for the final position in the West’s playoff ladder. Let’s dive in and take a closer look at Wednesday’s performances from a fantasy perspective.

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Burning bridges. No good, as you never know what the universe has in store for the future. Having water under the bridge? A good sign because that means climate change hasn’t evaporated a big percentage of the water on Earth. Mikal Bridges? Well, he was always a solid fantasy asset because he chipped in everywhere without hurting anywhere. Now, Mikal is making it rain so many fantasy goodies that the water flowing under this Bridges is causing the fantasy landscape to transform before our eyes. On Sunday, there was a flash flood warning due to:

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Can you tell that Joel Embiid is tired of coming in second? Because that was made extremely clear after last night’s performance in the battle between the top two MVP finalists the past two seasons. After being snubbed as an All-Star starter and barely being mentioned in the MVP conversation this season, Embiid had a near 50-20 game on the head of the reigning MVP and this year’s lead candidate, Nikola Jokic. Embiid took this matchup so personally that he finished in style, hitting a dagger jumper in the closing moments, followed by the infamous Michael Jordan shrug. Five other Sixers finished in double figures, including James Harden, who had 17 points and 13 rebounds, but last night was all about Embiid.

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Big bounce-back game for Rui Hachimura who went from scoring 0 against the New York Knicks a few days ago to matching his career-high with 30 points in the win.
All five starters finished in double figures, but Kyle Kuzma led the way with 25 points, ten rebounds, and six assists; Notably, the Wizards’ injury issues continue to plague them. While this was only Bradley Beal’s second game back from his hamstring injury, Kristaps Porzingis was the next to fall as he went down in the third quarter with a left ankle sprain. This team cannot catch a break.

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Something tells me the Pelican won’t fare well in that scenario, right? Well, that was the case Wednesday night when the Celtics’ Scottie Pippen, “Robin” or what have you – Jaylen Brown – torched the young Pelicans to the tune of 41 points and 12 rebounds in 34 minutes of action. Brown led Boston to a convincing 125-114 victory over New Orleans and he wasn’t alone – top dog, Batman Jayson Tatum bullied his way to 31 points and 10 rebounds of his own.

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