I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but there’s this big NBA trade rumor going around. In any case, it could affect several players, some of whom I’ve mentioned here. All stats are current through Friday afternoon. Let’s do this.
Standard League Pick-Ups
Tracy McGrady, SG/SF, Detroit Pistons (29% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
T-Mac is back! T-Mac is back! Well, sort of. McGrady has been getting more burn incrementally from month to month, playing 33.0 minutes in five January games thus far. He’s averaged 11.8 points, 4.6 rebounds, 6.0 assists while shooting 50 percent from the field on 9.6 shot attempts per game. While nowhere near his peak during his tenure with the Orlando Magic, it’s hard to ignore the versatility in the stats. If the proposed Carmelo Anthony trade goes down and Richard Hamilton is traded, T-Mac’s contributions could go up a bit more.
Ty Lawson, PG, Denver Nuggets (27% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
Yet another player that could be affected by the proposed Melo trade that would ship Chauncey Billups out to the New Jersey Nets — Lawson needs you watch his situation closely, stalker-style. Yes, Devin Harris would be coming back to the Nuggets, but rumors have Denver trying to ship out Harris to replace Anthony at the three spot. However, even if Harris stays, Lawson knows the offense and has done well when on the court. In the last week (two games), he’s averaged 14.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 2.0 steals and a three-pointer. There is a chance that Lawson would start regardless of whether or not Harris stays and in five games as a starter this season, Lawson has put up 17.0 points, 6.0 assists, 3.0 rebounds, 1.6 treys and a steal.
Derrick Favors, PF, New Jersey Nets (20% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
So, can you sense a theme here? Favors is the player most often mentioned to join the Nuggets in a Melo trade and there is good reason — Favors is pretty nice. Well, except when he gets the copious amounts of personal fouls that limit his production. In the past week (three games), Favors is averaging 12.0 points on 56 percent shooting from the floor, 4.7 rebounds and 1.7 blocks in 23.3 minutes per. Even if Favors doesn’t start for the Nuggets, he should get some good minutes since Kenyon Martin isn’t the most durable of players. Favors would be amazing in a George Karl offense with his athleticism and motor. I can already hear numerous calls of “Lawson to Favors with the flush!”
Deep League Pick Ups
Jodie Meeks, SG, Philadelphia 76ers (5% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
Meeks is handling business in the City of Brotherly Love and, boy, does he love him some Kerbys, hitting a trio of triples per contest in the past week (three games). He also averaged 16.0 points on 57.1 percent shooting from the floor and 87.5 percent from the free-throw line. He offers little more than points, threes, and hitting at the stripe, but he’s getting the opportunity to produce on the deck, averaging 30.7 minutes last week. We all know that getting PT is half the battle in fantasy sports. The other half, naturally, being knowing.
Matt Bonner, PF/C, San Antonio Spurs (7% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
Bonner is an excellent stretch big because of his ability to hit from beyond the arc. This past week (four games), he hit a duo of triples per night while averaging 11.8 points and 3.8 rebounds. The Red Rocket hit double figures in points in each game last week and seems to be gunning when he gets into the game, having averaged 9.7 chucks a game. Need triples and points? Be like Pop and call on Bonner.
Jordan Farmar, PG, New Jersey Nets (11% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
OK, last mention of the Melo trade in this column, I swear. If Billups comes on board, it’d be a smart assumption that Mr. Big Shot would start and get most of the minutes on the hardwood. And while that still sounds about right, there is that small possibility that Billups wants to be bought out. So, this is more of a speculative grab here for Farmar, but he’s done fairly well when duty calls. In the past week (three games), Farmar averaged 15.3 points, 6.0 assists and an impressive trio of threes per contest, all in 26.3 minutes. Again, this is a speculative grab, but in deep leagues, these types of hunches can make a huge difference.
True Or False
Now is the time to trade for Roy Hibbert.
TRUE. Hibbert’s potential is as huge as my eyes watching an Angelina Jolie movie (I don’t care how old that reference is) and it’s definitely worth a shot to try to get the Pacers big man. He’s been in a slump for about the past month-and-a-half after basically averaging a double-double for the first two months of the season. Can Hibbert get that magic back? Well, he’s still getting double-digit shot attempts, which is encouraging. However, he’s now shooting 37.0 percent in January, which is not encouraging. The steady decline month-to-month in blocks is also an unattractive feature, but remember, you’re trying to buy low. Some good signs are that he’s increased his rebounding rate in January (8.0) from his December output (6.7) and has been critical in games. The minutes are still up and down, but once Hibbert starts hitting a higher percentage from the floor, things should right itself. I mean, even Angelina Jolie made “Beowulf” before doing “Changeling.”
What I Did This Week
I almost dropped Al Harrington for Ersan Ilyasova, but quickly changed my mind since I didn’t know what would happen with that trade I promised I wouldn’t mention again. Harrington hasn’t been earning his money, but has some solid potential should he ever get enough playing time. He’s a multi-positional player that will get you points and three-pointers with a solid sample size. Ilyasova has some skills, but is still a bit of an unknown. When faced with having to choose between two players that you are pendulous on, stick with the player with a larger record of performance.
Fantasy Thoughts To Jump Off From
- After watching some Orlando Magic games recently, I’m starting to think that in the battle for the four spot, Ryan Anderson will reign supreme over Brandon Bass. Their games are different, but Anderson can put up some points, particularly from three-point land. The way their offense and its personnel stands, Anderson fits in more than Bass. Too bad because I was a big fan of Bass based on his per-minute production. It doesn’t help that Bass isn’t 100 percent. Per my suggestion last week, pick up Anderson if he’s available. He’s like a white Al Harrington.
- If the NBA can have you vote for its real life All-Stars, the fantasy basketball community can do the same! There’s still time to vote for the fantasy basketball All-Stars, so check out the poll over at fbasketballblog that Jason has set up. It’s probably more important than any government election you’d ever be a part of.
- Those commercials for Adam Sandler’s latest, “Just Go With It” is a few seconds worth of fantasy … when Brooklyn Decker walks on the beach towards the camera more specifically. Definitely going to see the movie because I love Sandler. Yeah, that’s what I’m telling my wife.
Number of Team Games in Week 13
Four Games: ATL, BOS, CHA, CHI, DAL, DET, GSW, HOU, IND, LAC, MEM, MIL, NJN, NOR, NYK, ORL, PHI, PHO, POR, TOR, UTA, WAS
Three Games: CLE, DEN, LAL, OKC, SAC, SAS
Two Games: MIA, MIN
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