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Mo Williams was one of the bigger beneficiaries of the trade deadline and is benefiting big time from Kemba Walker’s injury. Currently ranked 103 in Yahoo and topping out now in the top 20 Mo Will’s line from last week looks more like Russell Westbrook, James Harden, or Kyrie Irving. Over his three games he scored 23.7 points, 3.7 threes, 3.7 boards, 6.7 assists, .7 steals, 2 TO, and 46% and 83%. That’s a monster line with great scoring, threes, assists, and percentages out of guy who was deemed unnecessary on a terrible T-Wolves team. Keep in mind when Kemba comes back this line is clearly going to drop, it just depends on how far.
Wes Matthews: I knew Portland was think in the backcourt, but I thought adding Arron Afflalo at the trade deadline was bound to mess with Wes and even Batum a bit. I was wrong to start at least. In Matthews’ three game Week #18 in 33 minutes he averaged 18.7 points, 3.0 threes, 5 boards, 2.3 assists, 2.3 steals, .7 blocks, .3 TOs and 49% and 82%. He was literally fractions away from producing a positive value in all 9 categories. Would have only needed 3 or 4 assists, boards, and blocks to complete that. The 2.3 assists might seem low, but with only .33 TOs that’s an A/TO over 7 and let’s not ignore the glaringly obvious three and steals combo.
Every Houston Rocket player. With Dwight Howard out Harden, Ariza, and Terrence Jones have been crazy good. Three guys putting up top 25 value simultaneously through 4 games and more. I have to admit I scooped up Terrence Jones before he came back expecting some time to acclimate and possibly lingering issues. Instead his presences and Donatas Motiejunas shifting to center has made that team fire on all cylinders. Depth at every position and Josh Smith looking sensible on the court. Terrence Jones is playing like a monster big man with SF eligibility. 18.5 points, 10.5 boards, and 2.0 blocks on 60% from the floor near impossible even in small stretches. Most bigs can only dunk so many times in games. Just overall fun to watch for sure.
Gobert/Favors: Enes Kanter getting traded to OKC instead of Brook Lopez was amazing for anyone who owned Gobert and Favors. Neither guy is going to win you FT% or assists ever, but the defensive stats coupled with major minutes made both of their 4 games in Week #18 produce top 20 lines. Gobert averaged 5 blocks and steals combined and Favors 4. It’s also interesting to note that the Jazz are actually winning and playing games more competitively of late. Also, Google Rudy Gobert’s hand size.
Giannis Antetokounmpo: Giannis is still young and has lots of room to grow, but his 4 game stretch is more reminiscent of a Lance Stephenson line then Batum or Paul George who was physically compared to a lot. He shot 36% from the floor, 68% from the line, and turned the ball over 3 times per game. Since his offense is still so limited (9.25 points) he can’t extend his range out to three point land and his 7.3 boards, 3.8 assists, 1.8 steals, and 1 block don’t come anywhere close to evening him out. That stat line all year doesn’t even crack the 156 standard player pool.
Jeff Teague has been bottoming out for a while and last week might exemplify it more than normal. Ignoring stats, he sat out Spurs style with half of the Hawks one game and Dennis Schroeder is looking better and better the more he plays. Not that Teague is in danger of losing playing time necessarily, just that having a balanced team with 4 All-Stars means your team isn’t depending on you from game to game week to week. Shooting sub .400 (.380 to be exact) on 12 attempts per game is perhaps the more glaring issue, but the noticeable lack of a dominant category also hurts him a bit. Not really a three guy and gets a decent amount of Hockey assists that fantasy doesn’t count.
Gorgui Dieng’s minutes have gone up from week to week and month to month, but his blocks have gone down significantly in the opposite direction. How does a guy who average 1.6 blocks on the season only block 1 shot in 4 games? Almost seems impossible. Especially when your only job is to rebound and block. His efficiency stats are actually pretty decent, but if he can’t go 10, 10, with 2 blocks and hopefully some occasional steals then his value is extremely limited. In Week #18 his 4 games had him cracking the 12th round which means if he was playing on night with a full slate of games and you banked on him blocking some shots for you, you were highly disappointed.