The NBA is a league of opportunity. Its fantasy offspring is forever at the mercy of the ever-changing NBA rotation.
With the NBA trading deadline looming, opportunities are certain to open for some players while disappear for others. If you are curious about the effect opportunity has on the fantasy value of an NBA player, look no further than the Dec. 8 trade between the Toronto Raptors and Sacramento Kings.
The Raptors sent Rudy Gay, Quincy Acy and Aaron Gray to the Kings for Greivis Vasquez, John Salmons, Patrick Patterson and Chuck Hayes. Before the deal, backup point guard Isaiah Thomas' fantasy value was muffled by the minutes allocated to Vasquez. Thomas averaged 17.8 points, 4.9 assists, 1.4 steals and 1.5 three-pointers made in 27.7 minutes per game while playing backup to Vasquez.
After Vasquez was shipped north of the border, Thomas is averaging 21.3 points, 7.8 assists, 1.3 steals and 2.5 three-pointers in 37.8 minutes per game.
The skills have always been there for Thomas. He just needed an opportunity to let those skills flourish.
Here are a few more players who are readily available to benefit from newfound opportunity.
All stats taken from Basketball-Reference.com unless specified otherwise.