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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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Three games on national TV today was nice.  Delonte West was back and torched the Pistons, the Celtics figured out maybe Kevin Garnett isn’t all that important, and the Raptors got even with the Knicks.  But without further adieu…

Sunday’s best: No disrespect to Dwyane Wade’s 50 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists, but I’m giving this to Rajon Rondo.  What a player.  He went for 32 points, 6 rebounds, and 10 dimes, on top of 3 steals, a three, and some stellar shooting in a road win against the streaking Suns.  It’s pretty scary when someone outside the Big Three is playing this well.  Oh yeah, and Steve Blake had 14 assists in one quarter.  He only finished with 17 though.  Only.

Sunday’s worst: Grant Hill.  In 30 minutes, just 8 points on 2-7 shooting, and here’s the real dagger: 4-7 from the line.  He’s shooting 82% on the season, and this probably lost somebody in fantasyland a win for the week.  Extremely unimpressive line for that many minutes, and we have to wonder if that injury he suffered Friday is kind of a big deal.

Keep an eye on:DeAndre Jordan.  Dude went for 15 and 12 with 3 blocks.  He’s worth grabbing in deep leagues for sure.

What to watch for Monday: Monday is a fairly bland day around the league.  Carlos Boozer is expected to play Monday, so plug him in for sure, just don’t expect too much.  Keep your eyes peeled to that Clippers/Warriors box score to see if Jordan gets some minutes and continues to break out. 


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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 expected to be finalized Friday afternoon, the Miami Heat traded Shawn Marion and Marcus Banks to the Toronto Raptors for Jermaine O’Neal and Jamario Moon.

Has a guy ever been traded hours after hitting a game-winner?  Well he has now.

Anyways, this trade better suits the Heat’s system, and fulfills Pat Riley’s desire for a big.  But for Toronto, it makes them a legitimate playoff team.  At the moment, they are second-to-last in the East, but only four games out of a playoff spot.  This gives them a trio of Jose Calderon, Marion, and Chris Bosh that might be capable of going on a tear and making some noise.

As far as fantasy goes, one has to assume Marion’s numbers go up.  We’ll likely see Bosh play some center and Marion play at the four, because behind O’Neal, was Jake Voskuhl on the depth chart.  Winners here are Marion, Jason Kapono, and Joey Graham.  They’ll be picking up Moon’s minutes plus some of the minutes created by the shifting around of Bosh to center.

On the Miami side, not much should change.  They basically had no center, so this helps there.  Michael Beasley might get some more minutes, and it remains to be seen if Moon starts.  If not, Beasley would likely get the nod.  This effectively kills any value that Jamaal Magloire and Joel Anthony had in deep leagues.

I’m predicting some noise made by Toronto…


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Well, look at that.  A few upsets.  WE HAVE PARITY IN THE LEAGUE!  Toronto beat San Antonio, Utah beat the Lakers.  Denver also beat Orlando at home, and was up pretty big at one point.  And that battle of up-and-coming teams we alluded to yesterday?  The better team in the current won quite easily.  But let’s jump into some lines.

Wednesday’s best: Mo Williams: 44 points, 7 assists, 4 rebounds, 4 steals, and 600 three-pointers made.  Ok, only 7.  Yeah, he must have heard some people STILL complaining about his All-Star credentials and decided he’d go nuts.  I saw this game, and he was making some incredible shots.  And this folks, is why the Cleveland Cavaliers will win the Larry O’Brien Trophy.  Did I just say that?  In February?  Yep.  You heard it here first.

Honorable mention to Ramon Sessions and his 17 dimes.  Wow.

Wednesday’s worst: Mike Bibby and his whopping 5 points and 4 dimes on top of 3 turnovers.  Somehow the Hawks still topple the Pistons.  Things are bad in Detroit.

Keep an eye on: The Phoenix Suns.  They lost to the Cavs tonight in their last game before their break, and probably their last game with this roster.  Keep an eye on things because here’s something scary: Steve Nash sat out.  It was various aches and pains, and whatever else.  Yeah, yeah.  What worries me is that he didn’t sit on the bench.  Apparently he was in the locker room.  Implosion pending…

What to watch for tomorrow: I wonder if anyone will actually try tomorrow.  What a tough day to be a coach, when half your team is double-checking its tee times or RSVPing for parties in Phoenix.  Good thing there’s only three games, but two are semi-interesting.  The Celtics stop in Dallas on their way to the All-Star Game, and Portland takes on Golden State.  That second game would be fun to watch, but somehow it’s not the TNT game.  Oh well.


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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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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


Dropping Dimes is trying out a new feature. Fantasy 30 intends to rank all of the NBA teams in terms of fantasy power. A list like this tends to lead to a lot of disagreement and discussion, but the hope is that these rankings will be fluid and updated as the year goes on. Thanks to Ron Chow for the assist. In addition to publishing updates on the Fantasy 30, once in a while we hope to produce sister articles that focus on a specific team and its roster.

#1: Los Angeles Lakers: Kobe Bryant ranks as a top four fantasy player this year. The Lakers employ two fantasy-worthy starters for center in Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum. Lamar Odom has played well coming off the bench. Jordan Farmar has sleeper point guard potential, and the team also employs three-point threats like Derek Fisher and Vlad Radmanovic. All of this adds up to the Lakers being top dog early in the year.

Click to continue reading Fantasy 30, Version 1


Imagine Team USA starring LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and company posing for a picture like this. David Stern would have been on the next plane to China putting out fires and doing interview after interview insisting that the NBA loved its international flavor and that this type of stuff was not condoned at all. Fines probably would have been levied, and big companies might have stayed away from the Team USA stars i.e. it might have been a while before we saw Dwyane Wade and Charles Barkley hawking cell phones again.

It hurts a little extra because the guy picked here plays for my home team, the team I cheer for. My family comes from a Chinese background, and both the photo and the subsequent comments from this man have left a bad taste in my mouth. I even said, “Bring back T. J. Ford” when it first happened. Just as a fan, Jose, this is not the media’s fault, you and your team mates should not have done it, should not have caved if you were being goaded into it and you should have said sorry because you came off as ignorant instead of remorseful.

The moral of the story? Sometimes you have to put aside your feelings about a player and just look at the numbers.

Click to continue reading Dropping Dimes Mock Draft: Round 3, Pick 8 - Jose Calderon


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