We’re at the quarter-mark of the NBA season and it never hurts to make adjustments to your fantasy basketball squad. Here are some suggestions.
Waiver Wire Considerations
Bradley Beal, SG, Washington Wizards (57% owned in Yahoo! leagues)
Beal has had a relatively rough start, as most rookies do, but he seems to be figuring this NBA thing out lately. In 13 November games, Beal averaged 28 minutes, 11.2 points, 34.1 FG% (10.6 FGA), 85.0 FT% (3.1 FTA), 1.4 three pointers, 1.6 assists, 3.3 rebounds and 0.8 steals. In five December games thus far, he’s averaging 32 minutes, 16.0 points, 41.8 FG% (13.4 FGA), 85.0 FT% (4.0 FTA), 1.4 three pointers, 4.4 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 1.4 steals. Yes, now is the time to grab him in every fantasy basketball format while you can if you need some very good production over all categories. Well, besides field goal percentage.
Danny Green, SG/SF, San Antonio Spurs (57%)
Kawhi Leonard who? Leonard was the youngster Coach Pop anointed as the future of the Spurs franchise, but Green is proving to be every bit as worthy as Leonard. Remember, Green sat out of a game along with the Spurs’ Big Three of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili earlier this month, which could be symbolic if you’re into reading that deeply. However, it’s been a solid month for Green, who in six December games is averaging 10.0 points, 43.4 FG% (8.8 FGA), 2.3 three pointers, 1.5 assists, 3.3 rebounds, 1.8 steals and 1.0 block in only 27 minutes of burn. It’s not punch in the gut sort of stats, but the triples and defensive stats are very appealing. Green is more of speculative grab that can pay off down the line, but it will all depend how the rotation plays out when everyone is healthy.
Jarret Jack, PG/SG, Golden State Warriors (31%)
I’m a big fan of Jack’s because he seems to produce wherever he plays and now he’s doing it again with the Dubs. In seven December games, Jack is averaging 29 minutes, 13.6 points, 52.8 FG% (10.3 FGA), 91.7 FT% (1.7 FTA), 1.1 threes, 4.9 assists, 3.4 boards and 1.1 steals per game thus far. Tell me that across the board production doesn’t at least deserve standard league consideration for a roster spot. Things have obviously been going very well for the Warriors that the rotation shouldn’t change much moving forward, which is great news for Jack owners.
Marco Belinelli, SG, Chicago Bulls (21%)
Belinelli is playing so well of late that Richard Hamilton may be out of luck when he returns to the roster. In the past week (four games), Belinelli averaged an amazing 39 minutes, 18.0 points shooting 41.3 percent from the floor (15.8 FGA), 90.0 percent from the line (2.5 FTA), 2.8 treys while shooting 45.8 percent from behind the arc, 2.8 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 1.8 steals. Of course these numbers won’t sustain, but he’s an immediate take on the wire in deep leagues and deserves some recognition in normal-sized leagues for his triples acumen.
Eric Bledsoe, PG/SG, Los Angeles Clippers (17%)
Bledsoe is such an incredible player, but because he plays behind the best point guard in the NBA, Bledsoe won’t get much burn unless a CP3 injury goes down. Perish the thought. In any case, in the past week (four games), Bledsoe averaged 10.8 points on 57.6 percent shooting from the floor (8.3 FGA), 75.0 percent from the charity stripe (1.0 FTA), 3.5 dimes, 3.0 boards, 1.8 steals and 1.0 block in only 18.5 minutes per game. In any case, if you don’t own him in deep leagues, shame on you. Same goes for keeper leagues.
Matt Barnes, SF, Los Angeles Clippers (10%)
I kind of hate suggesting Barnes here because he’s been so streaky throughout his career, but he at least deserves a mention for his production this past week (four games). He averaged 13.3 points while hitting 55.6 percent of his shots (9.0 FGA), 75.0 from the line (2.0 FTA), 1.8 makes from downtown, 5.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.0 steal and 1.3 blocks in 25 minutes per contest. Of course, all of those numbers will be quartered next week.
Others to Consider:
Ed Davis, PF/C, Toronto Raptors (28%): Shooting high percentages of late (59.3 FG%, 92.3 FT% in his last four games), and in a rare start (second of the season) scored 24 points and grabbed a dozen boards.
Chris Duhon, PG, Los Angeles Lakers (6%): Since Steve Nash and Steve Blake got hurt, Duhon is playing some heavy minutes (32) and doing fairly well. In four games the past week, he averaged 7.8 points, 2.3 treys, 5.0 assists, 3.0 rebounds and 1.0 steal.
Andrew Nicholson, PF, Orlando Magic (2%): In three games this past week, Nicholson averaged 13.7 points and 7.0 rebounds while shooting 56.7 percent from the floor and 87.5 percent from the line. Yeah, he’s a pretty good rook.
DeShawn Stevenson, SG/SF, Atlanta Hawks (2%): When he was a Net, I loved DeShawn, but that has nothing to do with him being in this column. In three games this past week, he took 27 shots … all from downtown. He made 12 of them and should only be grabbed in deep leagues for his three point-affinity and no fee charge from his kitchen ATM.
Number of Team Games in Week 7 (12/17-12/23)
Four Games: ATL, CHA, CHI, CLE, DAL, DET, GSW, IND, LAC, MEM, MIL, MIN, NOR, NYK, ORL, PHI, PHO, SAC, SAS, UTA, WAS
Three Games: BKN, BOS, DEN, HOU, MIA, OKC, POR, TOR
Two Games: LAL