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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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Wednesday was somewhat eventful, at least in terms of real basketball.  Utah had their 12-game winning streak snapped in Atlanta, Miami upset the Celtics, and the Knicks took down the Pistons on the road in overtime.  It’s worth noting that Dwyane Wade had a poor shooting night, but still willed his team to a big win over the Celtics, something that I said yesterday he’d need to do before I seriously put him in my personal MVP race.  Well, in my books, he’s number two right now right behind LeBron James.  Sorry Kobe.

Wednesday’s best:  Chris Paul for sure.  He had a triple-double, posting 30 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists, along with 4 steals in a comeback win over the Wizards.  If only the Hornets could get their you-know-what together, Paul would be right in the thick of the MVP race.

Wednesday’s worst:  Oh Ben Gordon, why must you tease us?  After posting 43 points Monday, he shoots 1-10 for 4 big points in a big loss at Orlando.  How you go from 8-11 from three point range Monday to 0-1 Wednesday blows my mind.  Explain it to me Bulls fans.  I dare you to try.

Keep an eye on:  Never thought I’d say this, but… JJ Redick? He’s been getting some minutes in the last two games (30 Monday and 21 Wednesday) and has averaged 11 in those two.  But where you might find use for him is while streaming in the playoffs.  He could be good for an assured three a gamewith the right minutes if you’re in a deep league or the wire is thin.

What to watch for Thursday:
  TNT Thursday features Lakers at Spurs followed by Cavaliers at Suns (a game I wish I was going to).  The first will be typical Lakers/Spurs, and the second will be… a blowout.  I’m poredicting a big game for A) Mo Williams, B) LeBron James, or C) both of them.


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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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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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What a day Tuesday was.  Let me tell you, there were some crazy lines.  One stood above the rest.  Way above.  One could say it was… super.  And there was no green substance anywhere to be found…

Tuesday’s best: Let me start off saying there was a triple-double Tuesday.  It was Pau Gasol (12 points, 13 rebounds, 12 assists).  However, it was CLEARLY the second-best line.  The winner?  Superman himself, Dwight Howard.  All he did was score a career-best 45 points to go along with 19 boards and 8 blocks.  Two blocks short of one of the more impressive triple-doubles I’ve ever seen in my life.  Not only that, he was an uncharacteristic 13-18 from the line (72%) and 16-23 (70%) from the field.  Sorry Pau, Dwight just blew your triple-double out of the water.

Tuesday’s worst: Zach Randolph.  The former Jail Blazer played under 12 minutes because he felt it necessary to throw a punch at Louis Amundson.  I mean seriously, I was there, and we went to a boxing match and a basketball game broke out.  The plus side for Zach?  His +/- was only -13, compared to Eric Gordon’s -45 and Ricky Davis’ -42.

Keep an eye on: Amundson.  Sure, it was a blowout.  But Lou was the first guy off the bench under new coach Alvin Gentry and played 20 solid minutes, scoring 13 and pulling down 8 boards with the team’s lone block.  If he gets 20 minutes a game, which he could easily under a new coach, he’s worth a look in 12-16 team leagues where you need a big.

What to watch for tomorrow: Shawn Marion plays his first game as the Cavaliers travel to take on the Raptors.  Keep an eye on how many points the Raptors score, especially if Chris Bosh plays.  Dwight could go off again against New Orleans, who traded their best defensive big today.  And Devin Harris comes back to Dallas, where Vince Carter trade rumors are abound.  Could be semi-interesting.


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In a deal that appears to be mostly financially-driven, the Hornets sent Tyson Chandler to their once stand-in hometown of Oklahoma City for Chris Wilcox, Joe Smith, and the draft rights to DeVon Hardin.

I think in a pure basketball sense, it’s a good move for both teams.  Obviously, the Hornets may have lost the value end of it, but they get back a saavy veteran and a guy who can hold his own down low.  Chandler was having a bad season anyway, and Wilcox hasn’t been getting off the pine.

Fantasy-wise, Chandler will start in OKC, sending Nick Collison to the bench.  He takes a big hit in value and Nenad Krstic becomes droppable in every league.  Of course, either could see minutes at the four, but it won’t likely be many.

As for New Orleans, Wilcox will just take Chandler’s place in the starting lineup.  Smith will likely back up David West, and Hilton Armstrong will continue to see his limited minutes backing up Wilcox.

Big winner?  Wilcox, because he’ll actually get to play some minutes.


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A flurry of trade rumors have surfaced recently with the deadline now just less than two weeks away.  That being said, let’s take a look at some of the newer and more credible rumors and what they may mean to your fantasy team.

Amar’e Stoudemire
Oh boy, where do we start here?  He’s rumored to be going anywhere from New York to Detroit to Toronto to Portland to Chicago.  Various outlets have reported GM Steve Kerr’s willingness to deal anyone on the team not born in Canada.  Besides STAT, Shaquille O’Neal is also rumored to be on the block (along with the whole team), but chances are even his All-Star season can’t make up for the contract he’s carrying around.  While possible, that seems a little less likely.

The Fig Cap: What jersey will he be wearing on Opening Day?

Click to continue reading Trade Winds Blow, Are Your Teams Ready?


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