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Happy St. Patty’s Day!  I really wish I was a Thunder fan.  They really impress me.  They played really well without Kevin Durant, showing great ball movement and some of the best teamwork we’ve seen in the NBA this year.  Then tonight, they beat the Spurs.  They’ve now beat San Antonio, Dallas, Utah, Portland, and Detroit this year.  That’s not too shabby when early on, some people though they might break the all-time loss record.

Monday’s best:  It was a pretty slow night, and our award goes to Chris Paul.  His Hornets lost at home, but he ended up with 29 points, 6 rebounds, 11 assists, and 6 steals.  His 11-11 from the line wasn’t to bad either.

Monday’s worst:  Tyson Chandler. He played 38 minutes!  How you play that many minutes as the second best player on your team and score 4 points is beyond me.  Only 7 boards too.  I didn’t watch the game or anything, but maybe this is why they lost?

Keep an eye on:  The Hornets and a possible bad end-of-season scenario.  They’re clearly playing bad ball, losing 3 of 5, including losses at Atlanta and Chicago.  The rest of March is a cakewalk for them besides Denver, but in April they get Utah, Phoenix, and Dallas at home, and Miami, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio on the road.  They’re only a game and a half ahead of the 8 seed, and while I don’t think they’ll miss the playoffs at all, a couple more losses in March could severely hurt their seed and put them dangerously close to the lottery…

What to watch for Tuesday: Magic at Cavaliers is a good game on NBATV.  Pistons at Mavs should be a good one too, and is a big game for Dallas as things suddenly got interesting again at the bottom of the Western playoff picture this weekend.


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Another ho-hum Thursday on TNT saw the streaking Hornets beat Dallas and keep the 8th spot insecure and Denver win at home against the (still) Greg Oden-less Trailblazers.  Of course, pickens are always slim Thursdays, but one line stood out above all.

Thursday’s best:   Gotta go with Chris Paul.  He had 27 points, 4 rebounds, and 15 assists.  More importantly, another win for the Hornets, their sixth in a row.  This win gives them the four seed, and for now, home court in at least the first round.

Thursday’s worst: We’ll go with Josh Howard, for sitting out the second half.  Certainly isn’t his fault, but that doesn’t mean it won’t hurt fantasy owners.  He still managed to jack up 10 shots (missing 7) in 18 first half minutes.  Not good news.

Keep an eye on:  JR Smith, who started Thursday.  This is one of those guys you always look at and say “wow, he got the short end of the straw being on his coach’s bad side.”  If he starts, 3 threes per game are possible.  But he likely won’t keep starting as long as George Karl is his coach.

What to watch for Friday:  We’re at the point where about half or more of the games on a nightly basis are interesting for playoff implications.  But one Friday night matchup stands above all else: Cleveland at Boston.  Oh yeah baby.


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Wednesday saw Shaquille O’Neal’s return to Miami, a battle of streaking Western playoff teams, a battle for Texas, and two teams clinch playoff spots.  Yep, it’s March, and it’s exciting.

Wednesday’s best:  Of course it was Dwyane Wade.  I think his name is permanently in this spot now.  Seriously, dude is unreal.  It seems every team with a star guard torches the Suns like this.  Wade had 35 points, 6 rebounds, 16 dimes, a steal, a block, and a couple threes.  Nice.  Oh yeah, the Heat won too.

Wednesday’s worst:  Luke Ridnour.  0-7 from the field?  That’s enough to land you in this section.  No wonder the Bucks lost by 18.

Keep an eye on:  Daequan Cook.  He erupted for 27 points on 6 threes.  Performances like this might earn him more minutes.  He randomly got 36 in this game, and with more minutes, he might be worth looking at for some threes in deep leagues.  Just not yet though.

What to watch for Thursday:  It’s the worst day of the week for basketball, but at least it’s two decent games.  The Hornets take on Dallas in Big D, and the Blazers travel to the Mile High City to face Denver.  Of course, the best part of Thursday nights is the TNT show, we all know that.


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On Tuesday, the Pistons kept their hot streak going, as Chauncey Billups returned to The Palace, dropped 34, and still lost.  Don’t look now…

Tuesday’s best:  Not a whole lot of overly-impressive lines Tuesday night, but Troy Murphy takes home today’s award.  His line: 23 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 threes, 2 steals, 2 blocks as he led the Pacers to a win over the Kings.

Tuesday’s worst:  John Salmons.  Dude, Luol Deng is hurt.  You’re supposed to go back to being that fantasy stud you used to be.  This scrub played 33 minutes in the Bulls’ loss to Charlotte and scored 9 points on 4-13 shooting.  SCRUB!!

Keep an eye on:  The East playoff race.  The 15th team (Toronto) is only 5.5 games back, and two teams (Indiana and Charlotte) look awfully good right now and keep climbing the standings.  It’s gonna be a fun month.

What to watch for Wednesday: Cleveland hosts Milwaukee (remember what LeBron James did to the Deer the last time they played), Dwyane Wade lights up Phoenix (like every other team, just bigger), San Antonio plays Dallas on ESPN (and probably runs them out of the arena), and last but NOT least… the Grizzlies play the Clippers!


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Another Thursday, another crappy couple games.  The first game put me to sleep, and well, even my own team couldn’t wake me up in the second game.  With two games, there’s pretty slim pickens for the day’s best, but here it is…

Thursday’s best: Lamar Odom.  He had 23 points, 9 boards, and 4 assists with 3 blocks, but the impressive part was him going 11-12 from the field.  The Lakers shot 54%, the Suns played without Steve Nash, and the Lakers won by 26.  Go figure.

Thursday’s worst: You know what, this isn’t exactly a horrible line, but it’s a bad game for this guy.  And with two games on Thursday, he wins (or loses).  LeBron James.  Why?  I mean the guy had 21 points.  Well, he had zero assists and one rebound.  No wonder the Cavs looked awful.

Keep an eye on: Anderson Varejao.  Pretty nasty injury tonight to Ben Wallace, and he could miss some time.  Andy V will get those minutes and produce.  He might be worth a gamble in deep leagues.  Grab him now before people start to wake up.

What to watch for Friday: A few really good games worth watching if you can.  The Cavs take on the Spurs in Texas, and the Lakers travel to Denver for the second game of a back-to-back.  And… wait for it… a little bit longer… it’s coming… THE CLIPPERS AND THE KINGS!!  I mean, it’s an even matchup…


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Not much surprising Monday in terms of box score, but before you read on, please go watch this.  You’ll see why in a second.

Monday’s best: Did you watch it?  Wow.  The line Devin Harris put up tonight: 39 points, 2 rebounds, 8 assists, 5 threes, 2 steals, a block, 11-22 from the field, and 12-14 from the line.  Also worth mentioning was the line Nate Robinson was putting up at the same time across town.  KryptoNate went off for 41 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 threes, 2 steals, 11-18 FG, and 15-19 from the line.  Couple more points, rebounds instead of assists, one fewer three and block, but better FG%.  Pretty close, but not much tops that shot from Harris.

Monday’s worst: Chauncey Billups.  No wonder the Nuggets got bulldozed by the defending champs.  In 34 minutes, Billups had 3 points, 5 assists, and 4 turnovers.  He was 1-8 from the field and ended up a team low -38 at the end of it all.

Keep an eye on: The Utah Jazz.  They got Carlos Boozer back tonight, and they’re playing good ball.  Now they have a purpose, and with the West so tight, they could really climb that ladder.  They are a scary team for sure.

What to watch for Tuesday:  Two good games will be Mavericks/Spurs and Portland/Houston.  No Greg Oden vs. Yao Ming, but oh well.  Also, word has it that Mikki Moore is signing with the Celtics tomorrow.  He’d be worth a pickup probably, at least if you have the spot to spare.  Interestingly, Mike D’Antoni will miss practice Tuesday to attend an arbitration hearing for Stephon Marbury.  Might the Celtics be interested in him as well if the meeting spurs a buyout?  Hm…


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Friday night was something special.  We saw an epic battle between the Lakers and Hornets, in which Chris Paul fouling out might have cost the Hornets a big upset, yet another 140-point outburst by the Suns, and one of the truly amazing single performances in recent years by none other than LeBron James.  I really hope you got to see at least part of one of these games.

Friday’s best:  LeBron takes the cake here, and it’s not close.  The man scored 16 points in less than three minutes at the beginning of the third quarter.  He finished with 55 points, 5 rebounds, 9 assists, and 8 threes.  About half of those threes were at least a couple feet behind the line.  Truly amazing.  But let’s not look past Paul’s 21 points, 5 rebounds, 16 dimes, and 4 steals and Leandro Barbosa’s career-high 41 points (on 16-21 shooting!), 7 rebounds, 7 assists, and 6 steals.  Two extremely outstanding lines that would easily top most other nights.  Oh, and Randy Foye had 36 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, and 4 steals too.

Friday’s worst:  Peja Stojakovic.  He had 5 points on 2-11 shooting (1-8 beyond the arc) in 29 minutes.  If he had connected on just a couple more shots, the short-handed Hornets would have taken down the mighty Lakers in Hollywood… oh well.  He’s just so inconsistent, it has to be maddening for his owners.

Keep an eye on:  The Chicago Bulls.  Big win tonight at home against the Nuggets, in the first game after acquiring Brad Miller and John Salmons... and they didn’t even play.  Maybe it was a big chemistry booster.  Maybe they can make noise in the playoffs.  Maybe they should try to climb a few spots and get out of facing the Celtics or Cavs in the first round.

What to watch for tomorrow: The best game on the docket tomorrow is easily New Orleans at Utah.  One team coming off a pretty tough loss tonight in OT traveling to play a team in an emotional turbulent time, toppling the defending champs Thursday and losing their owner and influential Utah man Larry H. Miller.  Should be a pretty interesting game, and definitely an emotional one for the Jazz and their fans.  I wish Miller’s family and the community to best as they recover from this tough loss.


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Only two games tonight, and of course one was the lovely snoozefest the NBA calls Spurs/Pistons.  It was actually a good game, but I was happy enough watching the last two minutes, as I’m sure most people would be.  The Celtics/Jazz game was pretty good too, pretty close throughout.  Let me say, the Jazz look good.  They stayed composed and when they get healthy, they’ll be scary.  If I’m the Lakers or Spurs, I’m hoping they climb the standings.

Thursday’s best: Not a whole lot of impressive lines.  Could have gone with Timmy Duncan’s 18 points and 18 boards, but it was on some pretty shotty shooting (7-19).  Instead, we’ll give it to Allen Iverson, who went for 31 points, 3 boards, 7 dimes, a steal, and a block on 13-28 shooting.  Not too shabby on an otherwise unimpressive night around the league.

Thursday’s worst:  Gotta be Rip Hamilton.  He got 34 minutes off the bench in which he scored 4 points on 2-10 shooting.  Combined with Rodney Stuckey’s 2 points (although he did have 8 assists), a bad night from Rip did the Pistons in.

Keep an eye on:  Kevin Garnett’s injury and Gabe Pruitt. KG went down just before halftime with a “sprained knee.”  At the time of writing this, it’s pretty cloudy just how bad it is, but if he misses any time on this road trip, the Cavs could find themselves on top in the East.  With Tony Allen’s injury, Pruitt will get some extra burn.  He wasn’t extremely effective Thursday, but keep an eye out.

What to watch for tomorrow: Toronto at New York could be pretty exciting and high scoring.  The new-look Bulls take on a good Nuggets team in Chicago, so we’ll see if they’re really any good with Brad Miller and John Salmons.  And on national TV, the Hornets visit the Lakers.  Should be a doozy.


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It’s that time of year again!  No, not Single’s Awareness Day.  No, not the All-Star Break.  It’s that magical time that inevitable occurs every year when seemingly every relevant baller gets hurt.  It’s here in full effect, and let me tell ya, it sucks.  Here we go again…

Elton Brand
This just broke this afternoon.  This morning, it was a day-to-day sprained shoulder.  Now, it’s season-ending surgery.  Sweeeeet.  Yesterday ESPN reported that an MRI showed it was healing, too.  So who steps up?  Reggie Evans baby.  He’s long been a favorite of mine in fantasy, and with even 25 minutes we could see double digit rebounds often.  Go grab him now before everyone else catches on.  Marreese Speights should get a little extra burn too, and could be worth a look if you’re desperate.  Brand is probably safe to cut, but it might be smart to wait another day or two to make sure this is all definite.

Catch the rest of the recent injuries after the jump!

The Fig Cap: Yeah… how’s that working out for ya?

Click to continue reading Injury Bug Bites, And It Hurts


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Happy belated new year! Yours truly is way overdue for a post. Drive safely if you leave in a snowy region today.

I took a peak at the standings in the paper today. The season has just passed the one-third mark and there are some intriguing playoff scenarios. Obviously a lot of ball still needs to be played, but check out the match-ups if the playoffs started today. Like last year, on paper the match-ups in the West sizzle, while the East still looks top-heavy.

Click to continue reading Current Playoff Scenarios


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