Day 93: Where the Raptors Go All in on Gay
The big news of last night didn’t come from the court (unless you happen to be a fan of Matt Barnes’ MMA style of basketball), rather it’s the three team trade between Memphis, Toronto and Detroit. The trade saw Memphis send Rudy Gay and Hamed Haddadi to the Raptors for Jose Calderon (and his expiring contact) as well as Ed Davis and a second round pick. Calderon was then routed to Detroit for Tayshaun Prince and Austin Daye. The move saves Memphis a ton of money that they owed Gay, saves the Pistons a bunch of money, and nets Toronto… Rudy Gay.
As I noted in the comments of the blog last night, for a trade with some high profile names and so many moving parts, it will probably end up having surprisingly little impact. The trade does mean that Lowry is now the clear starting PG for the Raptors, but his problem this year had much more to do with injuries than Calderon. He should be huge if he can stay healthy, but that’s what we’ve been saying all year. The trade is probably worst for Ed Davis, who goes from 35 minutes a night and a starting job in Toronto to backing up Zach Randolph in Memphis. Maybe he carves out some deep league value off the bench, but he can most likely be dropped in standard leagues. The trade is also a negative for the Raptors wings, specifically Alan Anderson, who was doing enough to be worth owning in many leagues. Not anymore.
Prince heads to Memphis to take over for Gay, but he’s about to turn 33-years old and is Tayshaun Prince. His value shouldn’t change and I don’t mean that as a complement. But Prince has averaged 6 less shots per game this year than Gay, so there is some opportunity for guys like Randolph, Gasol and Conley to have a slight uptick in value. Or maybe the Grizzlies offense just completely goes to hell without Gay.
For the Pistons, Calderon will presumably take over the starting PG job since in addition to being an expiring contact, he’s a much better PG than what the Pistons have at the moment. And if last night’s game is any indication, the team will slide Kyle Singler from SG to SF and use Knight as their SG. Maybe a few more minutes for Singler in that situation, but he was horrible last night, so I wouldn’t expect much of a bump in value.
As for Gay, we’ll have to see how he, Lowry, DeMar DeRozan and eventually Bargnani all mesh together, but I’d assume he’d be able to get his. It’s more likely that DeRozan or Bargnani becomes the odd man out in that situation.
Line of the Night/Waiver Wire Line of the Night : The Charlotte Bobcats are like an underlit bar right before last call – they make everyone look hot – including Danny Green (43% owned), who had the best fantasy line of the night against Charlotte with 17 points, 3 threes, 5 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 blocks (2.00 WARP) in only 29 minutes on the court. Green has been starting for the Spurs nearly all season and, other than a 16 minute dud of a game against Phoenix last weekend, he’s been solid over the past couple of weeks. Green is not so good that he’s a must add, but he makes a nice plug and play and streaming option in daily leagues.
Honorable Mentions: Al Horford had a game for himself in the Hawks 93-92 win over the Raptors, scoring 22 points including the go-ahead basket at the end of the game, adding 10 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 blocks (1.89 WARP). Horford could really end up benefiting from what seems like the inevitable Josh Smith trade, and might be a guy you want to target in fantasy leagues.
Also for the Hawks, Kyle Korver continued his insane run where he’s shooting 60% from the floor, scoring 17 points on 6-10 from the field, with 5 threes, 6 rebounds and 2 steals (1.79 WARP). While that FG% is eventually going to come crashing down to earth, he’ll get huge minutes all season thanks to the Lou Williams injury. And amazingly for a team that barely squeaked out a win over the Raptors, they had three players with top-10 fantasy performances last night. Josh Smith finished with 20 points, 11 rebounds, 3 steals and 3 blocks (1.55 WARP) while playing 38 minutes.
Danny Green wasn’t the only Spur who benefited from the Bobcats. Kawhi Leonard had an efficient 18 points on 7-10 from the field, adding 4 threes, 5 rebounds and 2 steals (1.86 WARP) as Tim Duncan sat for the fourth game in a row with a sore knee.
Chris Paul missed yet another game with a bruised knee cap, but that didn’t matter to Blake Griffin, who led the Clippers to a win with 26 points, 13 rebounds and 3 steals (1.75 WARP). Eric Bledsoe was also great in the game filling in for Paul, scoring 10 points with 10 assists and 6 steals. The only blemish on his game is that he turned the ball over 6 times, oh, and shot 3-14 from the floor. I’d put him down in the waiver wire section, but he’s owned in every league that I currently play in, as well as every really competitive league out there .
Michael Fucking Beasley is one Sun who has really enjoyed the team’s coaching change so far. Beasley scored 27 points in a win over the Lakers, adding 6 rebounds and 5 steals (1.62 WARP) in 34 minutes off the bench. Beasley now appears to be the Suns 6th man and while he’s still been a little all over the place from game to game, he’s proven that he’s now worth a look in most leagues if he’s available on your wire.
Speaking of the Lakers, Dwight Howard left last night’s game after aggravating his shoulder injury. It’s an injury that everyone acknowledges will eventually require surgery, it’s just a matter of whether Dwight will be able to hold off and play through the pain during the season.
And in other injury news, Glen Davis has a broken left foot and could be done for the season. If so, look for no one to really step up in that PF spot again, although Nikola Vucevic should be huge all season.
Pick Up Lines: Nate Robinson (24% owned) continues to play like he thinks he’s Derrick Rose, scoring 24 points, on 9-11 from the field, with 4 assists and 3 steals (1.67 WARP) in a win over the Bucks. In fact, the Bulls two high scorers in the game were bench players – Robinson and Jimmy Butler (16% owned), who had 18 points on 8-12 shooting (1.07 WARP). The return of Rose looms over Robinson, but for now he’s played like a top-60 fantasy player over the last two weeks and is work a look in most leagues if you need some short-term pop in your lineup.
Two of the more inconsistent players in the league this year had good games last night. Spencer Hawes (49% owned) had 12 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 blocks (1.44 WARP) against the Wizards, but was completely embarrassed by John Wall as he went up for a dunk. And Mario Chalmers (42% owned) finished with 11 points, 4 assists and 3 steals (1.26 WARP) in a win over the Nets. Chalmers is averaging 1.4 threes and 1.6 steals a game this year, but the rest of his line is anemic. Stay away from both guys if you can in leagues.
Lance Stephenson (3% owned) had his second very good game in a row for the Pacers, scoring 12 points and adding 11 rebounds and 5 assists (1.08 WARP) in 33 minutes against the Pistons. Stephenson has been so consistently bad all season in the starting role for the injured Danny Granger, that I’d have to see another good game from him before I even thought about picking him up.
And we have to mention Samuel Dalembert, who has returned from the dead for the Bucks with his second double-double in a row, finishing with 14 and 13 and 4 blocked shots. Now before you run out and pick him up, in the two games that he exploded, Larry Sanders was in foul trouble in one and missed the other with an illness, so there have been special circumstances. Still, this is not something that Sanders owners should be happy to see, as it could lead to Dalembert stealing some minutes from Sanders down the road.
Biggest Loser: Matt Barnes went all Ron Artest in last night’s Clippers game and was ejected in the second quarter when he was called for a flagrant-2 after going for the throat of Greg Stiemsma. Barnes finished with 0 points, 0 rebounds and 1 assist (-0.85 WARP) in 6 minutes before his ejection. The league will review the incident and could also decide to suspend Barnes additional game, so there’s that too.
Among those guys who actually played, Deron Williams was shut down by the Heat, scoring only 9 points in the loss, and finishing with 1 rebound, 5 assists and 6 turnovers (-0.62 WARP). Williams had been playing very well leading up to this game, so I don’t think it’s a game to worry too much about.
Daily rankings and stats come from the FBC H2H Player Rater (beta version). They are based on the stat Wins Above Replacement Player (WARP) an estimate of the number of wins a player produces per week in H2H leagues over a replacement (waiver wire) player.
Do not miss a day of the Fantasy NBA. Subscribe to Fantasy Basketball Coaches right now. You can also get bonus (and easily digestible) content by following FBC on Twitter, or become a fan of FBC on Facebook! We are so social!
If you like what you read here, come back every day for new content! And if you come back every day, please consider donating…