Fantasy Basketball Recap: Andray Blatche, Joakim Noah, and More
Another edition of 3 Got Game's NBA-Analytiks FNC! Let's get to it.
Ryan Hollins is a Mirage
Ryan Hollins continues to impress—tonight he racked up 14 rebounds and 2 blocks in 30 minutes of play. But unless Anderson Varajao is out long-term Hollins should have limited-to-no value once the regular season begins. Varajao should be able to secure the lion's share of minutes at center, which will eventually render Hollins useless as a fantasy play.
Other Cavs News: In 24 minutes tonight, JJ Hickson finished with 16 pts, 8 rebs, on 80 percent from the line, but only managed zero stls and 1 blk. Hickson's fantasy value hinges on his ability to get defensive categories, but 2 games into preseason, his lack of steals and blocks is a source of concern.
Mo Williams continues to nurse an injury which opens the door ever so slightly for Ramon Sessions. Sessions flirted with a triple-double tonight with 10 pts, 10 rebs, and 6 asts in only 25 mins. If Sessions continues to gain momentum, it will make for an interesting position battle when Mo returns. (Keep an eye on this.)
Andray Blatche is Rising
Earlier this summer, I wrote that Andray Blatche's fantasy value would fall this season with the return of Gilbert Arenas and the arrival of John Wall. I took it for granted that Blatche's usage would significantly decline. But early on, Arenas has been passive, allowing the offense to revolve around Blatche and the rookie Wall.
Tonight, Arenas took only 11 shots in 28 minutes relative to Blatche's 16 shots in 24 minutes. If this continues (or if Gilbert gets traded), Blatche will have more value this season than I had anticipated. Andray Blatche is definitely rising.
Other Wiz News: John Wall is a stud. You can live with his TOs and poor field goal percentage. His assists, points, and steals will make up for it. And in a keeper leagues, I would take Wall right after Chris Paul, Deron Williams, and maybe Steph Curry.
Javale McGee disappeared tonight after his stellar outing last game. Not sure what happened. This may have been a result of Coach Saunders wanting to take a longer look at some of the other bigs. Either way, as of now, Javale doesn't appear to have the tightest grip on the starter's job (keep an eye on this.)
Glen Davis is Intriguing
Big Baby might actually be a sneaky good value pick this year. The thing Baby has going for him is that Coach Doc Rivers trusts him. Baby knows his role (most of the time) and he fills it well.
With the Celtics looking to pace themselves during the regular season, Baby might actually be a decent backup to your backup's backup this season. In shallow leagues, ignore the Baby. But in deep leagues, Baby might be worth giving a look. Tonight in 28 minutes, he accumulated 20 pts, 5 rebs, 2 stls, 1 blk with good percentages.
Joakim Noah is Rising
Even before Carlos Boozer's injury, I was high on Noah this season. Noah's is often undervalued because his unimpressive per-game averages mask his high-level of productivity last season.
Noah averaged only 30.1 mins per game last season, but on a per-36 minute basis, he typically produced 12.8 pts, 13.2 rebs, 1.9 blks, with decent percentages. Tonight's performance of 13 pts, 8 rebs, 6 asts, and 3 stls in only 19 minutes should serve as a reminder of a potential breakout season.
Other News and Notes:
Sleeper candidate Nicolas Batum had a quiet night, while Wesley Matthews and Dante Cunningham paced the Trail Blazers. It's unclear what kind of role Wes Matthews will have for Portland so keep an eye on him ... Dominique Jones got the start tonight. He's unlikely to make an impact once the season starts, but you should keep him on your watch list anyway.
Blake Griffin had a great game tonight, showing us why he was the No. 1 draft pick two years ago. Griffin had 18 pts, 13 rebs, 1 stl and 1 blk on 7-of-7 shooting from the field. For keeper leaguers, Blake is a must-draf...Demarcus Cousins came back down to earth tonight ...Kevin Martin will be a top 25 player this season if he can stay healthy...Yao had 7 rebs and 3 blks in 13 minutes of play (not looking so great for Yao early on).
Aaron Brooks picked up where he left off from last season and should be a good fantasy play this year...And all of Phil Jackson's talk of using Andrew Bynum as a situational player makes Lamar Odom an intriguing option.
Odom is a solid contributor when he plays starter's minutes, so keep your ears open for more on this story...rookie Derrick Favors had his second straight bad game. I hope Avery didn't jinx the young man after comparing him to a young Tim Duncan a few weeks ago.
That's it for now! Have a good evening!
Ken writes for NBA-Analytiks www.nba-analytiks.com
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