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Friday January 5, 2007 5:20 pm

Stat’s All Folks: T-Mac Is Back!

T-Mac chillin' before thrillin'Stat’s All Folks will be a week-to-week stock market look at the standard cumulative categories – points, assists, rebounds, three-pointers made, steals, and blocks.  I’ll be calling out the “bulls” and “bears” in each category, in order to help you assess your portfolio of players on your fantasy basketball team(s) and whether you should sell, hold, and/or diversify your assets. 

Note that you won’t always see the superstar player written about in this column, otherwise it would be LeBron James or Steve Nash every week.  So, check out who’s bullish and who’s bearish coming into the week.

Statistics are from December 28th – January 3rd.

POINTS

BULLISH

Tracy McGrady, SG/SF, Houston Rockets
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 3 G; 33.3 PPG; 56.5 FG%; 55.6 FT%

In the past week, McGrady has been playing like the T-Mac of old and not like an old T-Mac.  In each of his three games, McGrady has scored 31, 38, and 31 points, respectively.  And it hasn’t even been a fluke sort of deal where he just jacked up forty or more shots to get his points.  Look at the field goal percentage above too.  Taking 23 shot attempts per game on average is a lot, but again, look at that percentage from the floor!  No wonder McGrady’s been scoring so much and it speaks well for his health as well, being able to hit that many baskets at a high rate.  I won’t declare him “back” because of the lingering prospect of back spasms that sidelined T-Mac earlier this season, so throw out some feeler deals for more durable players.  Otherwise, hold T-Mac and hope he stays healthy.

Matt Barnes, SF, Golden State Warriors
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 4 G; 23.8 PPG; 41.4 FG%; 86.4 FT%

Bye bye, broken-handed Jason Richardson, hello Matt Barnes fantasy value increase!  With the injury to J-Rich and second-year phenom Monta Ellis still out, Barnes is a primary option in the Warriors’ high powered offense.  Expect Barnes to get a steady stream of field goal attempts for the foreseeable future.  Barnes may be available on the waiver wire in shallow leagues, so definitely pick him up.  After his 7-for-16 performance from three-point land the other night, Barnes may not, so check quickly and pick him up even quicker.  I’m talking Road Runner quick.

Other Blue-Chippers for the Week
Kobe Bryant, SG, Los Angeles Lakers: 2 G; 46.5 PPG
Allen Iverson, PG, Denver Nuggets: 4 G; 30.8 PPG
LeBron James, SF, Cleveland Cavaliers: 4 G; 29.0 PPG

Keep An Eye On
Ben Gordon, PG/SG, Chicago Bulls: 3 G; 28.0 PPG
Caron Butler, SF, Washington Wizards: 3 G; 26.0 PPG
Tony Allen, PG/SG, Boston Celtics: 4 G; 21.8 PPG

BEARISH

Rasheed Wallace, PF, Detroit Pistons
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 2 G; 8.0 PPG; 28.6 FG%; 75.0 FT%

I understand that Wallace isn’t the best scoring option at his position, thanks in part to Chauncey Billups, Richard Hamilton, and Tayshaun Prince being the Pistons’ main scorers.  However, Billups has been out with a calf injury and Wallace hasn’t stepped up his game shooting 6-for-21 last week.  Obviously the shooting woes won’t continue because Sheed is too good to shoot less than 30%.  Wallace was never a huge point producer, but averaging eight points per contest is way below his standards and Wallace owners’ expectations.  However, if you can talk up how bad Wallace is doing points-wise and buy him low, you’ll enjoy very good boards, treys, and blocks production. 

Other Duds for the Week
Andres Nocioni, SF/PF, Chicago Bulls: 3 G; 8.3 PPG
Andrei Kirilenko, SF/PF, Utah Jazz: 3 G; 8.0 PPG
Mike James, PG, Minnesota Timberwolves: 4 G; 6.8 PPG

Buyer Beware
Mike Miller, SG/SF, Memphis Grizzlies: 3 G; 30.7 PPG
Matt Carroll, SG, Charlotte Bobcats: 3 G; 22.7 PPG
Mark Blount, C, Minnesota Timberwolves: 4 G;  20.5 PPG

ASSISTS

BULLISH

Raymond Felton, PG/SG, Charlotte Bobcats
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 3 G; 14.3 APG; 4.0 TO

Felton’s fantasy value always, to some degree, hinged on Brevin Knight because Knight would take away handling of the rock time from Felton.  While this allows Felton to set up and be more of a scorer, the dime drop potential goes down.  Recently Knight underwent abdominal surgery and is expected to miss about a month more and Felton has been going off.  On back-to-back nights last week Felton finished with 15 and 19 assists, showing just how good he can be and why he was taken in the third or fourth round of most drafts banking on Felton’s potential.  Definitely hold on to Ray Ray.

Jannero Pargo, PG, New Orleans Hornets
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 3 G; 6.3 APG; 3.0 TO

Since Chris Paul has been out, Pargo has been the starter for the Hornets and he’s been doing very well for himself.  Of course, the Hornets are still losing, but team records don’t matter in fantasy.  Pargo may be available still on the waiver wire, so if you need some assists, pick him up with the quickness.  Otherwise, only trade for Pargo if you are absolutely desperate for a lead guard who should give you about six or seven dimes for the next month or so before Paul comes back to the hardwood.

Other Blue-Chippers For The Week
Steve Nash, PG, Phoenix Suns: 5 G: 11.2 APG
Deron Williams, PG, Utah Jazz: 3 G; 9.3 APG
Baron Davis, PG, Golden State Warriors: 4 G; 8.3 APG

Keep An Eye On
Chris Duhon, PG, Chicago Bulls: 3 G; 8.7 APG
Mo Williams, PG, Milwaukee Bucks: 3 G; 7.0 APG
Stephon Marbury, PG, New York Knicks: 4 G; 6.8 APG

BEARISH

Jarrett Jack, PG, Portland Trailblazers
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 4 G; 3.5 APG; 2.3 TO

Here’s Jack’s breakdown of assists per game from month-to-month: November (5.9), December (5.1), January (2 games – 4.5).  In four games last week, Jack had one, four, two, and seven assists.  If it wasn’t for that seven assist game last week, the above-cited 3.5 apg could be a lot worse.  Notice the trend here, folks?  Do I need to expound?  I’m not sure how tradeable Jack is by himself, but if you can combo him to get a more consistent player, go for it.

Other Duds For The Week
Tony Parker, PG, San Antonio Spurs: 4 G; 3.8 APG
Mike James, PG, Minnesota Timberwolves: 4 G; 3.5 APG
Earl Boykins, PG, Denver Nuggets: 4 G; 2.8 APG

Buyer Beware
Damon Stoudemire, PG, Memphis Grizzlies: 3 G; 8.0 APG
Darrick Martin, PG, Toronto Raptors: 2 G; 6.0 APG
Hedo Turkoglu, SF, Orlando Magic: 3 G; 5.0 APG

Chris Bosh

REBOUNDS

BULLISH

Chris Bosh, PF/C, Toronto Raptors
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 1 G; 14.0 RPG

So, it’s only been one game, but it’s an encouraging performance.  Bosh had missed a dozen games previous to coming back, which frustrated a lot of CB4’s owners since he was supposed to come back a few times in that time span.  Well, Bosh came back and came back Popeye the Sailor Man strong and showed why he was a first round pick before this season.  Barring further injury, expect Bosh to be somewhere around the top of the rebounding category from hereon forth and show why the Raptors actually have a chance of winning the Titanic, err, Atlantic Division and a fantasy championship for you.

Dikembe Mutombo, C, Houston Rockets
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 3 G; 12.3 RPG

Since Yao Ming is hurt, Mutombo has been starting at the five spot for the Rockets.  Known for his finger-wagging after rejecting shots, he’s been hand-grabbing boards to the tune of double-digits in all three games last week, while only averaging 24 minutes per game thanks to foul trouble.  Mount Mutombo is a strong play and/or add for rebounds and, of course, blocks.  Don’t trade for him because his value will do go down quicker than one of the shots he blocks once Yao comes back.  If he’s on the waiver wire, pick him up now and do your own finger-wagging to the other owners in your league and say

Other Blue-Chippers For The Week
Emeka Okafor, PF/C, Charlotte Bobcats: 3 G; 17.7 RPG
Marcus Camby, C, Denver Nuggets: 2 G; 14.5 RPG
Kevin Garnett, SF/PF, Minnesota Timberwolves: 4 G; 13.8 RPG

Keep An Eye On
Shelden Williams, SF/PF, Atlanta Hawks: 2 G; 10.5 RPG
Pau Gasol, PF/C, Memphis Grizzlies: 3 G; 10.0 RPG
Devin Brown, SG, New Orleans Hornets: 3 G; 8.7 RPG

BEARISH

Zaza Pachulia, C, Atlanta Hawks
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 2 G; 1.5 RPG

Pachulia grabbed three rebounds in one game last week and zero in the other.  And he started each game!  He played over 23 minutes in each!  He’s about seven feet tall!  Who does Pachulia think he is, Brad Miller?  In all honesty, Shelden Williams is probably impacting Zaza’s board numbers.  Williams has been grabbing double-digit boards since starting four games ago and if he keeps it up, could push Zaza to the bench or at the very least to get less time on the court once Josh Smith comes back from back surgery in about a month.

Other Duds For The Week
Channing Frye, PF/C, New York Knicks: 4 G; 4.5 RPG
Joel Przybilla, C, Portland Trailblazers: 4 G; 2.3 RPG
Brad Miller, C, Sacramento Kings: 3 G; 2.0 RPG

Buyer Beware
Josh Howard, SG/SF, Dallas Mavericks: 4 G; 11.0 RPG
Stromile Swift, PF/C, Memphis Grizzlies: 3 G; 10.7 RPG
Luke Walton, SF, Los Angeles Lakers: 2 G; 9.0 RPG
Mo Williams, PG, Milwaukee Bucks: 3 G; 8.0 RPG

 

THREE POINTERS

BULLISH

Mike Miller, SG/SF, Memphis Grizzlies
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 3 G; 7.7 3PTM

Do you think that Miller likes the new offensive philosophy of running and gunning since the firing of former head coach Mike Fratello?  Consistently taking double-digit attempts from beyond the arch certainly says so.  And the fact that Miller hit nine, seven, and seven treys in his games last week is only give him more allowance to do so.  Need triples, definitely trade for Miller as I think he’ll finish with the most threes made by the end of the season.  If you have enough shooters in the triples category, go ahead and trade Miller.  After last week’s performance Miller’s value is as high as city skyscrapers.

Other Blue-Chippers For The Week
Matt Barnes, SF, Golden State Warriors: 4 G; 4.0 3PTM
Tracy McGrady, SG/SF, Houston Rockets: 3 G; 4.0 3PTM
Kobe Bryant, SG, Los Angeles Lakers: 2 G; 3.5 3PTM

Keep An Eye On
Andrea Bargnani, SF/PF, Toronto Raptors: 3 G; 2.7 3PTM
Hedo Turkoglu, SG/SF, Orlando Magic: 3 G; 2.3 3PTM
Rasual Butler, SG/SF, New Orleans Hornets: 3 G; 2.3 3PTM

BEARISH

Wally Szczerbiak, SG, Boston Celtics
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 4 G; 0.3 3PTM

Okay, maybe Szczerbiak deserves a pass here since he just came back from injury and still is suffering from a nagging ankle injury.  Wally isn’t getting enough lift on his shot, probably because of said ankle injury and only hit one three-pointer in 12 chances last week.  Ride it out with Wally and hope he feels healthier soon enough to start hitting treys on the regular.  Since Paul Pierce went down to injury, a lot of pressure for scoring was supposed to be put on Szczerbiak’s shoulders, but Tony Allen and Gerald Green have stepped up just fine enough to take some of that burden.  That’s a good thing since Wally’s ankles probably couldn’t take on all that weight.  So, expect him to get some more rest to keep Wally fresh and back on track later in the season.

Buyer Beware
Matt Carroll, SG, Charlotte Bobcats: 3 G; 4.3 3PTM
Donyell Marshall, SF/PF, Cleveland Cavaliers: 4 G; 3.3 3PTM
Darrick Martin, PG, Toronto Raptors: 2 G; 2.5 3PTM

 

STEALS

BULLISH

Allen Iverson, PG, Denver Nuggets
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 4 G; 2.8 SPG

Iverson is known for attacking the rack, getting hit, and getting right back up.  The Answer can hit from anywhere on the court and flat out score.  What gets lost in AI’s offensive onslaught is his ability to rip rocks.  His career average is an impressive 2.3 steals per contest and this season AI is all the way up at 2.5.  Last week, Iverson had seven steals in one game displaying his versatility and fantasy studhood.  Speaking of versatility and studhood…

Other Blue-Chippers For The Week
Luke Walton, SF, Los Angeles Lakers: 2 G; 3.0 SPG
Jamaal Tinsley, PG, Indiana Pacers: 2 G; 3.0 SPG
Andre Iguodala, SG/SF, Philadelphia 76ers: 4 G; 2.8 SPG

Keep An Eye On
Mo Williams, PG, Milwaukee Bucks: 3 G; 2.7 SPG
Trevor Ariza, SF, Orlando Magic: 3 G; 2.3 SPG
Anthony Parker, SG/SF, Toronto Raptors: 3 G; 2.3 SPG

BEARISH

Kevin Garnett, SF/PF, Minnesota Timberwolves
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 4 G; 0.0 SPG

… what’s going on with Garnett not getting any steals in four games last week?  It’s been more like dudhood for KG in the steals category where he has a 1.4 spg career average.  But, don’t sweat it because it’s just an anomaly for Garnett.  Obviously hold on to both AI and KG.

Buyer Beware
Jorge Garbajosa, SF/PF/C, Toronto Raptors: 2 G; 3.5 SPG
Royal Ivey, PG, Atlanta Hawks: 2 G; 2.0 SPG
Corliss Williamson, SF/PF, Sacramento Kings: 3 G; 1.7 SPG

Zo flex it, baby!

BLOCKS

BULLISH

Alonzo Mourning, C, Miami Heat
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 3 G; 2.7 BPG

Doesn’t Mourning seem like he’s been around forever?  Zo is sort of like tennis great, Jimmy Connors in that both were effective around the baseline and both played for a long time in their respective sports.  Age?  To quote Jesus Quintana from The Big Lebowski – it don’t matter.  What does matter is that Mourning is still spry enough to reject shots with regularity and even if you gave him an eye poke, his hands would still find the basketball and return it to sender like it was junk mail.  And while Zo has one of the stiffest hook shots you’ll ever see, this is fantasy, so as long as he blocks other player’s hooks, you’ll be happy.  And, honestly, hasn’t Mourning been hooking it up for you and your fantasy team like Santa Claus did about two weeks ago?  Instead of ho, ho, ho, let’s end this with a Zo,, Zo, Zo!

Other Blue-Chippers For The Week
Marcus Camby, C, Denver Nuggets: 4 G; 5.0 BPG
Jermaine O’Neal, PF/C, Indiana Pacers: 2 G; 4.0 BPG
Elton Brand, PF, Los Angeles Clippers: 4 G; 4.0 BPG

Keep An Eye On
Amare Stoudemire, PF/C, Phoenix Suns: 5 G; 3.0 BPG
Dikembe Mutombo, C, Houston Rockets: 3 G; 2.3 BPG
Andrew Bynum, C, Los Angeles Lakers: 2 G; 2.0 BPG

BEARISH

Samuel Dalembert, C, Philadelphia 76ers
Last Week’s Numbers of Note: 4 G; 0.3 BPG

Considering Dalembert only had one block in four games last week, it has to concern you to some degree.  Dalembert’s appeal is in his block numbers and if he isn’t getting them, you sort of feel ripped.  All I have to say is, you’ll get over it because Dalembert will get over it.  It’s just a rough patch for him, but if an owner doesn’t think it is, steal him away.  If you own him already, hold on tight, get the hats and streamers because the block party is bound to come.

Buyer Beware
Dorell Wright, SG/SF, Miami Heat: 3 G; 2.7 BPG
Josh Childress, SG/SF, Atlanta Hawks: 2 G; 2.0 BPG
Francisco Garcia, SG/SF, Sacramento Kings: 3 G; 1.7 BPG

I’ll be here every week during the regular season, trying to become the Gordon Gekko of fantasy basketball.  Be my Bud Fox.

 

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Comments:

Ray Ray was just plain silly last week!  Had I not lost ALL of my point guards to injury, we both could’ve gone over 200 assists for the week.  It would’ve been one heck of a dime-off!

You’ve listed Mike Miller is your Buyer Beware section for assists in the past, can I make a case for Mikey?  He’s been an excellent source of assists out the forward spot for most of the year.  His rebounding isn’t bad, and with his recent surge in 3’s he’s been HUGE!

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