Dennis Schroder scored 28 points, grabbed three boards, and dished out nine dimes to lead the Hawks to a 117-115 victory over the Cavaliers. He did turn the ball over six times and did not accumulate any defensive stats, but we still love him. The Mitchell family still loved their little Dennis, even though he caused mischief whenever and wherever he went. Now, things are looking promising going forward. His usage rate is at 31%, he’s hoisting up almost 19 shots per game, averaging over 21 points, and dishing out six dimes a game. Granted, it was against the Cavs, a team with Derrick Rose and Jose Calderon starting at point that gives up fantasy manna to the position. HINT: play all point guards against the Cavs. With that said, The Menace is a top-50 player and should finish there when all is said and done.
As a Lakers fan, it pains me to say this, but the Clippers are going to be a juggernaut sooner rather than later. I’m a firm believer in the notion that success comes from the top. Well, the Clippers have an owner who is smart (Harvard BA), brilliant (dropped out of Stanford to join Microsoft), rich ($33.1 billion net worth), and passionate.
In addition, he brought in Jerry West this year, the literal GOAT, to serve as a consultant. The last team to hire West as a consultant was the Golden State Warriors. That worked out pretty well. I still can’t believe West is with the Clippers, as he really should be a Lakers for life. I’m sad now. Anyways, he knows basketball and has such a great eye for talent.
So, I don’t know how old you guys are, obviously, but I’m at the age where I have “lost youth’ moments. Most recently, I was at the local TargWalmar-conglomerate, and happened to see some of my favourite hip hop acts in the bargain CD bin. Ice-T’s “Power” album for $2? Big Daddy Kane, Eric B and Rakeem, tossed away like so much trash? My blood began to boil, but then I remembered that my doctor told me to watch my angina (don’t worry, I have pills for that), so I shuffled off to the suspender aisle to find my zen. But there is a lesson to be gleaned from this experience, beyond me cantankering about the youth today, and that is: you can find gold in the bargain bin, if you know what to look for.
Remember, the NBA trade deadline is fast approaching, and that fact should remind you to be aware when your fantasy trade deadline is, if you don’t already know. It’s always difficult to slow-play, counter, or reject a trade if you have 48 hours to pull something off, and it puts more pressure on both you and your trading partner. I know this isn’t any great revelation, but it happens every year, some dude in the league sends out an email after the deadline complaining that he/she (he/she?… even I’m not taking the obvious joke there) wasn’t aware, and should be allowed to make one last trade. Don’t be that he/she! What you can do right now, is try and start building the big trade, if you’re in contention. If you’re not (and in a keeper), analyze your team, and start trading assets for picks before the guy in second last does it before you. The third thing to do is pay close attention to the waiver wire gets, as they will be all that’s left in that post-trade apocalyptic wasteland. Guys rise and fall, due to injury and the subsequent opportunity, and you need to be aware of those streamers who can fill those voids. Keep your eye on the following bargains and fool’s gold:
Who doesn’t remember Remember the Titans? “If you have to remind people what the joke in the title is from, it sucks JB!” Thanks ghost of Grey! I’ll work on improving the rest of the week if you can sneak in and Hollow Man me a mustache ride.
Hard to believe Remember the Titans is so old. Who woulda thought Will Patton’s annoying ass daughter would be getting torn apart by some monster Russian boxer. “I must break you.” And who woulda thought a guy who had bounced around the D league, played in China, barely played in 2011-12 the last time we saw him in the NBA, would break fantasy basketball waiver wires?! Hassan Whiteside absolutely tore apart the Clippers Klitschko-style for 23/16/0/2/2 yesterday afternoon, in case you missed it and weren’t watching NBA. Not like there was any other sport with important games on… Mr. Whiteside hit 10-13 FG and 3-4 FT (although he’s not the best FT shooter), and most importantly started the second half over Chris Andersen. Birdman had bid flu with a -17 +/- and Whiteside was brightside for +26. No disparity there! And somehow Slim’s Heat won. I’d be very surprised if Whiteside doesn’t start tomorrow against the Lakers, and he’s leap-frogged a lot of the fringy big men. Alex Len is so then! Jordan Hill can take a chill pill! Jusuf Nurkic can… Nope, he’s still Jamba Jus! Love my smoothies… But Hassan is likely a must-own in all leagues. Hopefully you grabbed him yesterday or can this morning, so your bigs can tear apart your opponents Klitschko-style. Here’s what else went down over the weekend in fantasy basketball action:
Some NBA GMs had a case of the Mondays, that’s for sure! “Uhhhh, I’m not ready to be back at work, let’s do something nuts just to make it look like we’re working…”
In a blockbuster three-team trade, the New York Poppycockers salary dumped Iman Shumpert and J.R. Smith to the Cavs. More pressure on Blatt! Now he has to win with Knicks Outkasts… “I like the way you move!” The last NBA coach who said that to Smith was George Karl. Shumpert is likely going to start at the 2 with Smith becoming a 6th man. Both of them must have had a redonkulous party to be heading to a winner. Don’t invite Plaxico or Felton! Then there’s Dion Waiters to the Thunder. Meh. Not like most leagues were using Waiters anyway, but he takes a minor hit in deepers. Reggie Jackson should still lead the second unit in shots, so I’m not that excited. The Knicks picked up three guys – Captain Kirk (but not the Hinrich one), some European with a lot of hair, but then an interesting name in Lance Thomas. I almost made a cracker joke, but we’re gonna gloss right over that and reminiscence in some games he had earlier in the year on a depleted Thunder front line – 12/8/2 (Nov 1), 14/5/1 (Nov 4), the fluky 7/13/6 (Nov 12). And depleted is baked right into the Knicks funnel cake right now. The Poppycockers might as well see what they have at some point, so in uber deep leagues if you need someone with any sort of upside, I’d be sure and star LT on your wire. Here’s what else went down on a crazy Monday for fantasy basketball:
I for one am elated the Holidays have wrapped up (big thanks again to Slim for his recap at the end of last week!), and ready to buckle down for the second half of the fantasy regular season in H2H. My new year’s resolutions have been made – use Twitter more, swear a little less, work out a lot more… But this gosh darn knee! Eh, I’m pretty flippin’ flabby anyway… Fiddlesticks! Might as well shut it down…
And the talk for Carmelo Anthony‘s shutdown continually grow like a wave across the second level at Madison Square Garden. Not like they have anything else to do… Next new year’s resolution – less dot dot dots! The 5-31 Knickerbockers (I’m calling them The Poppycockers the rest of the way) have been worse than even Spike Lee could have imagined after reading reviews of his Oldboy remake. “Brooooooo – Liiiinnnnn!” Some dude named Bondy (shakeny, not stirredy) from The New York Daily Newsreported Melo’s knee will need a minor surgery, so it’s not like Melo is just playing through general oldboy-ness. He’s missed the last few after being awful for two straight to end December, so trading him off in fantasy leagues is redonk tough. Last we checked in (mostly through comments), I’ve maintained I’m not giving him away, but it’s fairly close. He’s about at the “leave on the curb” status rather than “driving him all the way to the dumpster.” My best advice would be to find a need for your team, and go for a guy that hits that need without a huge overall rank – i.e. Trevor Ariza for some steals and treys. Might not get Ariza these days, but yeah, something like that. And I still think you gotta try and hold out until Melo plays a few in a row – he’s traveling with the team for the next two games so he’s likely to suit up at least once. Here’s what else went on in fantasy basketball since we flipped the calendar:
Preseason is here! Preseason is here! I’m as giddy as N64 kid on Christmas Day.
But before we got into any action, Nick Young had a rough end of to his week last week, jacking up his thumb on his shooting hand requiring surgery. He’ll be out 8 weeks, which puts him back in Purp-n-Gold mid-to-late November, optimistically. You can drop him off your fantasy teams now! He’s got a plenty big cast to hitchhike his way somewhere else. I would say to “Scrubtown” but if you say that three times fast it starts to sound kinda like Scranton and I don’t want to offend Scrantonites or fans of The Office.
I wasn’t big on Swaggy P anyway, but no reason to touch him except in the very deepest of leagues. Pretty empty scoring. Wesley Johnson gets a minor bump up, and that’s the extent of the impact. Now back to preseason! Of course every performance must be taken with a grain of salt, and this early it’s a friggin’ pillar of salt, but it’s never too early to see how players are doing – especially this year’s ridiculous class of rooks. Here’s what’s gone on across the league:
With the full 2014-15 Fantasy Basketball Rankings now complete, let’s take a look at the final 50. Sean Connery. Kevin Costner. Tons of Great Depression-esque costumes. I’d imagine if you’re in a deep league and looking at the field below with your last pick or two, you’re feeling something like this:
It’s pretty hopeless, as in 12-teamers these are all likely guys you’re merely starring on your watch list post draft. There’s some questionable talent, some questionable roles, maybe even someone that’ll give you The Grapes of Wrath, but some untapped upside! Here’s my top 200 for the 2014-15 Fantasy Basketball Season (based on 9-cat H2H):
So, I would wager that most of you have passed the trade deadline, if your league has one. And it should. Nothing sparks a conspiracy theorist like an “uneven” trade between a contender and a team out of contention 2 weeks from the playoffs. If you are in a league that still allows trades, have your hand hovering over the “bullsh*t” button when trades come across the wire.
But what do you do when you have a player that needs replacing? The waiver is your saviour! Check these cats out if you need some last minute replacing:
The period of free agency continues to shape the fantasy basketball-scape with fresh meat on terrible teams and players signing with contenders to be relegated to bench duty. With baseball in full swing and the NFL getting half of the ESPN air time no matter what time of year it is, a lot of NBA moves have been made under the radar. Look for every division to get a team-by-team breakdown and some early fantasy thoughts on the new faces in new places: