Fantasy Basketball 2016-17: A Dozen Dimes, Volume 10
Welcome back to our weekly transactions article, where we dish out 12 dimes of fantasy hoops advice, including the top adds, drops, buys, and sells for this upcoming week and beyond.
These are generally listed in relative order of importance. If you're looking for even more advice, check the "related news" section to cycle through other recent editions of this column. We try not to repeat ourselves too much from one week to the next, so you might find more ideas you like from previous weeks that are still valid.
Okay, let's get down to it.
Buy Jabari Parker
The Jabari Parker breakout is officially on.
Over his last six games, Parker is the 14th-ranked player in nine-category leagues with averages of 24.2 points, 1.7 three-pointers, 5.5 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.0 steal, 0.5 blocks, and a mere 0.8 turnovers per contest, and a shooting split of 58.7% from the field and 59.1% from the free throw line.
The field goal percentage is a little higher than his 49.0% season average, and the free throw percentage is down from his usual 73.5%, but the rest of that line is quickly becoming what we can expect from Jabari Parker on a nightly basis.
Last year, Parker came in as the 115th-ranked player in nine-category leagues in his first full campaign, and looked like he didn't have much to offer from a fantasy perspective outside of some mid-level output in points. Now, he has become a more well-rounded fantasy asset, sprinkling in a bit of everything to go with his efficient scoring.
Buy in while you still can.
Add Justise Winslow
Justise Winslow is back from a wrist injury that sidelined him for 16 games and is trending up.
He's started his last three contests and averaged a whopping 42.0 minutes over that span, while positing a line of 16.0 points, 0.0 threes, 8.3 boards, 2.7 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.0 blocks, and 1.7 turnovers, and shooting 44.9% from the field and 57.1% from the charity stripe.
The low free throw mark and total lack of threes and blocks drags him down to 140th-ranked value over the last week, but anyone in need of a boost in scoring and rebounds with decent assists and steals for the position should look Winslow's way.
His consistent role with the Miami Heat makes his rest-of-season outlook intriguing, as he works his way into consistent production in his sophomore season.
Add Montrezl Harrell
Clint Capela is out the next four-to-six weeks with a broken fibula (and is a hold as the 74th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, if you can manage it) and it looks like Montrezl Harrell will be the biggest fantasy beneficiary during Capela's absence.
Harrell has started the last two games in Capela's place and has stepped right in to replace his mid-round value, averaging 16.5 points, 0.0 threes, 5.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.0 steals, 1.5 blocks, and 1.5 turnovers per contest over that span, while shooting an efficient 68.2% from the field and 75.0% from the charity stripe.
He's not a rest-of-season add, but if you're looking for a punch of decent scoring and big-man stats, Harrell's a good option.
Add Malcolm Brogdon
Rookie Malcolm Brogdon has been a pleasant surprise for the Milwaukee Bucks after they selected him 36th overall in this year's draft. The absence of Khris Middleton has left plenty of minutes at shooting guard for Brogdon and Tony Snell, and while Snell is an entrenched starter, Brogdon has the more fantasy-friendly game and is currently trending up.
Over Brogdon's last 3 games, he's averaged 11.3 points, 1.3 threes, 3.0 rebounds, 6.3 assists, 2.0 steals, 0.0 blocks, and 2.0 turnovers in 25.4 minutes per contest, while shooting a blazing 70.0% from the field and a perfect 4-for-4 from the free throw line. That makes him the 41st-ranked player in nine-category leagues over the last week and well worth a pick-up for anyone with a dead/streaming roster spot and a need for assists, threes, and steals.
Sell LaMarcus Aldridge & Pau Gasol
It's an annual tradition here at A Dozen Dimes to tell you to sell any member of the San Antonio Spurs not named Kawhi Leonard, lest ye be "Popped" (subjected to a DNP-rest at an inopportune moment by head coach Gregg Popovich). Now that Tim Duncan is retired and Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili are past the point of fantasy relevance, LaMarcus Aldridge and Pau Gasol are here to carry the torch.
Neither big man is living up to his lofty average draft position (ADP), as Aldridge is currently ranked 54th in nine-category leagues after being drafted 25th across the industry, while Gasol comes in 75th after being drafted 37th on average.
Aldridge is playing even more minutes than he did last year (his first with the Spurs) when he ranked 26th overall, but basically every part of his line that you drafted him for (points, boards, blocks, both percentages, and low turnovers) has taken a hit playing next to Gasol:
|LaMarcus Aldridge||PTS||3s||REB||AST||STL||BLK||FG%||FT%||TOV||9-Cat Rank|
Gasol, meanwhile, has seen his minutes and usage go way down after moving from the Chicago Bulls to the Spurs this season, and every other part of his line has gone down with it:
|Pau Gasol||PTS||3s||REB||AST||STL||BLK||FG%||FT%||TOV||9-Cat Rank|
Both Aldridge and Gasol have been producing a bit more in recent weeks, so now would be a good time to sell high on either or both. You might not get value equivalent to their early-round ADPs, but it might not be a bad idea to see what you can get whenever they string together a few stat-stuffing games.
The combination of declining numbers and random DNP-rest games makes both far harder to trust these days.
Add Marreese Speights
Blake Griffin is facing a four-to-six week absence following arthroscopic right knee surgery. Paul Pierce has started the last four games for the Los Angeles Clippers in his place, but the 39-year-old has done little in his mere 12.8 minutes per contest over that span. The true fantasy beneficiary in the Clippers' frontcourt without Griffin has been Marreese Speights.
In only 21.3 minutes per contest over his last three, Speights has been the 51st-ranked player in nine-category league with averages of 13.0 points, 2.0 threes, 5.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.0 steal, 0.3 blocks, and 0.7 turnovers, and shooting marks of 50.0% from the field and a perfect 9-for-9 from the free throw line.
His role isn't solidified enough yet to make him a must-add, but he's worth grabbing for now until we see how this all plays out. There's no reason to think Pierce or Brandon Bass are threats to take time away from a rolling Speights during Griffin's time on the shelf, so this recent hot stretch could be just the beginning of some solid mid-round production.
Add Raymond Felton
Speaking of the banged-up Clippers, Chris Paul has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury and is set to miss the next two as well, while J.J. Redick tweaked his hamstring on Christmas Day and is day-to-day heading into tonight's tilt with the Denver Nuggets.
Backcourt guys like Jamal Crawford and Austin Rivers get slight bumps if you've been relying on their production, but the more interesting short-term add during the Clippers' current period of convalescence is next-man-up Raymond Felton.
Felton has started the last two games in place of CP3, averaging a healthy 35.9 minutes per contest, and putting up a late-value line of 8.0 points, 0.5 triples, 7.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.0 block, 2.0 turnovers, 33.3% shooting from the field, and a perfect 1-for-1 from the charity stripe.
He'll shift back to being waiver wire fodder once Paul returns, but he makes for an intriguing short-term add or streaming option this week in the interim.
Buy/Add Elfrid Payton
Elfrid Payton continues to come off the bench behind D.J. Augustin for the Orlando Magic, but has been producing in a big way over the last two weeks. Over that seven-game span, Payton has been the 36th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 16.4 points, 1.1 threes, 3.9 rebounds, 7.1 assists, 1.0 steal, 0.4 blocks, and 1.7 turnovers in 29.1 minutes, while shooting 54.1% from the field and 78.9% from the free throw line.
Payton is currently owned in 70% of both Yahoo and ESPN leagues, so he may not be available on your wire (he's a must-add if he is), but he's an intriguing buy candidate if his current owner sees this as a sell-high moment.
Augustin has done very little with the starting point guard job and Payton might eventually reclaim the spot and get even more minutes. He'll always be a liability in the efficiency stats, but Payton stuffs the stat sheet otherwise when given the opportunity and is worth buying into with his arrow pointing unmistakably upwards.
Add Bismack Biyombo
Bismack Biyombo is not a very well-rounded fantasy player, but what he does well, he does extremely well. He's been outside of standard-league value on the season as a whole (currently ranked 244th), despite starting the last 16 games for the Magic and putting up a healthy 26.5 minutes per contest, but he's played well over his last five.
Over that span, Biyombo has been the 107th-ranked player in nine-category leagues with averages of 7.4 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.0 assist, 0.4 steals, 3.0 blocks, and 1.0 turnover per contest, and a shooting split of 52.0% from the field and 52.4% from the line.
He continues to have his warts, but owners in desperate need of rebounds or blocks should look his way whenever he's rolling like this.
Add Ty Lawson
Ty Lawson is not in a strong position to be fantasy relevant in standard leagues as Darren Collison's backup at point guard for the Sacramento Kings, but he has been making a strong case for ownership over the past week.
Over that three-game span, Lawson has averaged 16.7 points, 0.7 triples, 3.7 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.0 blocks, and a mere 0.7 turnovers in 27.7 minutes and shot a blazing 60.0% from the field and 75.0% from the free throw line. That has made him the 45th-ranked player in nine-category leagues over that span, while Collison has struggled mightily, coming in as the 294th-ranked player in only 21.1 minutes per game.
This is an intriguing buy-low opportunity on Collison, but Lawson's efforts can't be ignored, as he works his way back into being a viable add in standard leagues. He's available in 85% of Yahoo leagues and 90% on ESPN, so assist/steal-starved owners should give him a look and see if he can keep this recent surge of production going.
Add P.J. Tucker
P.J. Tucker has managed to hang around mid- to late-round value over the last three years without ever really standing out. He's at it again this year, coming in as the 146th-ranked player in nine-category leagues on the season, but it's his play over his last seven games that's made him worthy of ownership.
Over that span, Tucker has been the 62nd-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 8.7 points, 1.6 threes, 5.4 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 2.1 steals, 0.6 blocks, and a mere 0.7 turnovers, while shooting 42.1% from the field and 50.0% from the line. The low scoring makes him seem rather unassuming and is likely a big reason for his low ownership rates of 10% on Yahoo and 5% on ESPN.
However, the rest of his line ranges from solid to elite, making him a sneaky add while T.J. Warren works his way back into shape.
Drop J.R. Smith
J.R. Smith will be out 12-to-14 weeks after thumb surgery and was only putting up borderline standard-league value in nine-category leagues (ranked 143rd) before going down. You probably might not need to be told this, but he can safely be dropped if you're part of the reason that he's still owned in 50% of Yahoo leagues and 20% on ESPN.