Iiiiitttt waaaas k-k-kiiiinnnd-uhhhv a slooooow F-f-frrrriiiiidayyyy niiiite innn thaaaa Ennn-Beeee-Aaaaa, wiithh-th ooonnnleeeee fiiiiiive gammmmess ooon the d-d-dooockkkkett …

It is difficult to write in slow motion. It’s got to be even harder to play a professional sport in slow motion. But the man they call Slo Mo [still wondering why his nickname isn’t The Sloth, since he even resembles the lovable creature], Kyle Anderson, is the enigma [another nickname possibility!] of the modern day game where stinging athleticism makes headlines. 

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The Magic at full strength have a great, young frontcourt, and that was on display last night.  They totaled 78 points, 22 boards, and 6 assists last night.  If you own Franz Wagner, Wendell Carter Jr., and Paolo Banchero, well, that’s kinda weird to have three guys from the same team.  But any of them are legitimate starters going forward, and they all still have some upside.  Unfortunately, if you are holding Bol Bol, he looks like the fourth wheel of this tricycle.  I would hold him and see, but I’m not optimistic.  The other three are better players.

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Second-year center Alperen Sengun showed off his best Hakeem Olajuwon impression as he finished with a near 20-20 game to help dominate the Oklahoma City Thunder. The ending score may indicate that this game was somewhat competitive, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Led by Jalen Green’s team-high points along with Sengun’s monster performance, the Rockets blitzed the Thunder 42-22 in the second quarter and led in this game by as much as 27 points. The Rockets were firing on all cylinders as all five starters finished in double figures including rookie forward Jabari Smith who had 15 points and 13 rebounds while shooting 5-of-11 from the field.

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Buy Low. Sell High. 

It’s a simple concept, projected every week of every season in fantasy sports. And for good reason. It’s the foundational strategy to get the most out of in-season trades and improve your roster. The only problem is that it’s all based on general consensus of which players are performing below ADP and should improve, and who’s overplaying their hand and is due for regression. There’s always variable opinions on what the best moves are in the buy low / sell market. But, for the most part, there’s agreement of what players fit in that box on any given week.

So – if for nothing else other than a matter of practice – let’s think outside the box for a moment, using as an example the biggest sell high candidate of the moment. 

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We are back for Week Five of the NBA season. While I admit it is early, there are already some patterns and trends that have begun to crystalize. The Houston Rockets and Detroit Pistons will be amongst the worst teams in the league, as they lose for the hope to win the Victor Wembanyama sweepstakes. Rostering Kawhi Leonard will be a colossal headache and likely not be worth the effort by seasons end, if not earlier. The Los Angeles Lakers will not be winning any rings this year, no matter if they make a trade or not. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is the real deal Holyfield. (Mind Blown)

Of all the many things, the one I am most certain of is that this week’s feature player cannot keep shooting this poorly. I mean surely, he cannot, right? Nah, there is no possible way and that is why he is here.

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The Atlanta Hawks get some late-game heroics from their All-Star backcourt of Trae Young and Dejounte Murray to pull out the close overtime win over the New Orleans Pelicans.
Murray recorded his first triple-double of the season with 22 points, 10 rebounds, and 11 assists; Young had a game-high 34 points along with 10 assists on 9-of-26 shooting and going 14-of-15 from the free throw line.
Big night for Clint Capela who finished with 21 points, 19 rebounds, and four blocks.
The New Orleans Pelicans got 29 points apiece from the duo of CJ McCollum and Zion Williamson.
Jonas Valanciunas finished with 13 points and 17 rebounds while Herb Jones had a near double-double with 19 points and nine rebounds to along with three steals.
A notable thing to monitor is the play of Brandon Ingram who had a quiet night with 16 points on 7-of-23 shooting from the field in his second game back from injury; Might not be anything, but there is a chance that his stats may fluctuate from night to night as he gets reacclimated.

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Another day, another Brooklyn Nets story. I suppose this news is helpful on a slow day, with minimal fantasy basketball and DFS action. Kyrie Irving has been suspended by the Brooklyn Nets, for failure to comply with team actions and simple measures. This is interesting, considering the team handed out the suspension in the wake of the news breaking that Brooklyn is nearing contract finalization with shunned Boston Celtics Head Coach, Ime Udoka.

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On a day with few games on the slate, we had an eventful day in the National Basketball Association. There was some movement in the coaching ranks. Steve Nash was dismissed by Brooklyn after only seven games. Rumors were rampant in the offseason that Kevin Durant wanted Nash fired. As life would have it, that happened. Whether or not Durant had any involvement is unknown. The two-time league MVP, Nash, in all his professionalism, thanked the city of Brooklyn, the players, and the organization for the opportunity. Nash exits, leaving the Nets 2-5, currently sitting at 13th in the Eastern Conference. The only way is up, right?

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Anfernee Simons scored 31 points along with a career-high 11 assists to help lead the Portland Trail Blazers to the 115-110 victory over the Washington Wizards.

This was also a big game for Jusuf Nurkic who chipped in 23 points and 14 rebounds while watching Simons score 26 of his 31 points in the first half. Solid night for the Trail Blazers’ wings as Nassir Little and Robert Covington combined for 33 points.

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So my pops was born and raised in Korea. He grew up during the Korean War and life was tough, as his homeland was the battleground for a proxy war between superpowers. As a result, every male Korean citizen had to do their duty and serve in the armed forces, which is still a staple of Korean society since the peninsula is technically still at war. For him, that’s fighting for freedom. We were having a discussion the other night about people who choose not to get vaccinated. Although I don’t agree with their stances, I do understand some of their perspectives. My pops? He scoffed and chuckled when the perspective of “It’s my right to not get vaxxed. Don’t infringe upon my freedoms” got mentioned. In his words, “Those are the same people who would try and skirt a military draft if their freedom was at stake! Bunch of ” I love when pops keeps it real. Anyways, Joel Embiid is not one of those people. He not only fights for freedom but looks forward to the battles with Freedom, as in Enes Freedom. Prior to last night, they faced each other 17 times. Embiid has averaged 26.2 points, 10.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 0.8 steals, and 1.6 blocks. Last night, Embiid eradicated Freedom once again in 40 minutes:

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On this exciting edition of Friday Night Lights in the NBA, there were two kinds of games that you could have watched with no real in between.

The first kind was the nail biter games that came down to the final possession. Games like Indiana vs. Orlando or Denver vs. Phoenix where each team’s superstar talent had to step up in the closing seconds of the ball game to help steal their victory. These are the games where each team can taste the victory, yet only one team is able to truly capitalize and come out the winner. The Detroit Pistons may have felt the brute of this kind of game as they fell just short of the win due to Jerami Grant being just a hair too late on getting his shot off in the closing seconds the Rockets.

On the other side were the blowouts or the “humble games.” These were the games like the Cleveland Cavaliers defeating the Brooklyn Nets for the second time this week and the Boston Celtics losing to the Philadelphia 76ers despite getting 42 points from Jaylen Brown. These are the kinds of games that can tell you a lot about a team’s weakness and force them to look in the mirror after simply being outmatched.

In a week filled with buzzer beaters and overtime victories, the Friday Night games did not disappoint as they continued the trend we saw throughout the week of high-level matchups, surprise performances, late game heroics and exciting finishes. Here are my Primetime Players from Friday Night’s matchups!

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While Christmas has morphed into a commercialized phenomenon, let us not forget why we engorge in capitalistic orgies because of it. Christmas is the day that Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ; the son of God, the final piece of the Holy Triumvirate, the One who died for our sins so that we may experience salvation. To say that He is an important figure in history is an understatement. So, it is only fitting that on the day after Christmas, a Christian would ball out and be the lede of this post. And it makes sense that such an elevating performance would be delivered from a player named Wood because who doesn’t like elevated Wood. Anyways, Christian Wood delivered:

PTS REB AST STL BLK TOV 3PT FG FT
22 7 3 0 1 3 2/4 7/9 6/6

In 24 minutes off the bench. Now, the Pistons….POOF….made the Wizards disappear, 132-102 last night. As a result, Wood received more run than normal. On the season, he’s averaging 15.3 minutes per game, which is a shame because he balls out when he’s on the court. Maybe this Wood cannot perform for extended periods of time. I kid, I kid. Beep. Boop. Bop. You know what performs 24/7? The Stocktonator. The reason why Wood has been passed around more times than a blunt in a cypher (he’s played for five teams in five years) is because of immaturity and a lack of professionalism off the court. So far this season, Coach Casey has brought him along slowly and made him earn everything. Wood can score, provide tres, grabs boards, contribute defensive stats, and shoot efficiently from the field. Back on December 1st, Wood scored 28 points, grabbed 10 boards, dished out 2 dimes, blocked 1, and stole 1 in 22 minutes!!! That’s the kind of upside we are talking about here. There’s a chance Wood can carve out a more substantial role as the season progresses. For now, he can’t be counted on but make preparations for when that time comes. Sort of like how the celebration of Christmas has evolved over the years. First, it was just about one day a year. Now, it’s something that people begin preparing for right after Thanksgiving.

Here’s what else I saw last night:

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