Posted by Brandon Haraway Categories: Disses, Props, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Atlanta Hawks, Miami Heat, Orlando Magic, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, New Orleans Hornets, San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets, Portland Trailblazers, Seattle Supersonics, Utah Jazz, Phoenix Suns
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.
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.
Posted by Brandon Haraway Categories: Disses, Props, Boston Celtics, Cleveland Cavaliers, Milwaukee Bucks, Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, New Orleans Hornets, San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets, Portland Trailblazers, Utah Jazz, Phoenix Suns
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.
Tuesday brought a few news items. Mikki Moore signed with the Celtics, making him an interesting guy to look at, especially if he’s out there in deeper leagues. Stephon Marbury was bought out in New York, which is a good thing for all parties involved. It looks like he may be headed to Boston as well. What remains to be seen is if he plays the Sam Cassell role, or a semi-significant role, as the main PG behind Rajon Rondo. Keep an eye on that.
Tuesday’s best: Dwyane Wade. We talk about this guy a lot don’t we? He went off for 31 points, 7 rebounds, and 16 assists. He made 8-9 from the line and 11-20 from the field too. The 6 turnovers kinda hurts, but oh well. I’ll take it.
Tuesday’s worst: OJ Mayo. Juice had just 7 points, 2 rebounds, and 6 assists. That’s not TOO bad but he did go 3-11 from the field (1-6 from three) and turned the ball over 4 times. Definitely not typical for the Juice Man.
Keep an eye on: Daniel Gibson. He broke out of his funk to the tune of 19 points, including 3 threes. That’s about it, but that’s all you’d need him for. He’s worth watching because if he gets hot, he’s got value for sure.
What to watch for Wednesday: Close to a full slate Wednesday. Watch Boston, and how they use Leon Powe against a team with an inside presence and with Brian Scalabrine’s sudden neck injury. I doubt Mikki Moore will be with the team, but who knows. San Antonio hosting Portland should be a good one as well.
Posted by Brandon Haraway Categories: Disses, Props, Rumors, Boston Celtics, New Jersey Nets, New York Knicks, Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets, Portland Trailblazers, Utah Jazz
Not much surprising Monday in terms of box score, but before you read on, please go watch this. You’ll see why in a second.
Monday’s best: Did you watch it? Wow. The line Devin Harris put up tonight: 39 points, 2 rebounds, 8 assists, 5 threes, 2 steals, a block, 11-22 from the field, and 12-14 from the line. Also worth mentioning was the line Nate Robinson was putting up at the same time across town. KryptoNate went off for 41 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 threes, 2 steals, 11-18 FG, and 15-19 from the line. Couple more points, rebounds instead of assists, one fewer three and block, but better FG%. Pretty close, but not much tops that shot from Harris.
Monday’s worst: Chauncey Billups. No wonder the Nuggets got bulldozed by the defending champs. In 34 minutes, Billups had 3 points, 5 assists, and 4 turnovers. He was 1-8 from the field and ended up a team low -38 at the end of it all.
Keep an eye on: The Utah Jazz. They got Carlos Boozer back tonight, and they’re playing good ball. Now they have a purpose, and with the West so tight, they could really climb that ladder. They are a scary team for sure.
What to watch for Tuesday: Two good games will be Mavericks/Spurs and Portland/Houston. No Greg Oden vs. Yao Ming, but oh well. Also, word has it that Mikki Moore is signing with the Celtics tomorrow. He’d be worth a pickup probably, at least if you have the spot to spare. Interestingly, Mike D’Antoni will miss practice Tuesday to attend an arbitration hearing for Stephon Marbury. Might the Celtics be interested in him as well if the meeting spurs a buyout? Hm…
Posted by Brandon Haraway Categories: Props, Talent, Boston Celtics, New York Knicks, Toronto Raptors, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Portland Trailblazers, Utah Jazz, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, Phoenix Suns
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.
Good to see the Jazz win tonight, in what had to be a big emotional boost for that organization and city. I’m a Suns fan, you know I’m not exactly rooting for the Jazz, but I gotta say, it was good to see them win this game. Another note: Oklahoma City has a really bright future. I saw them in person Friday, and then in the second half of a back-to-back, they played really well. See: Saturday’s best.
Saturday’s best: Tie between Russel Westbrook and Jeff Green. Man what a great young team. Seriously. If they don’t land a big name free agent in 2010, it’ll be shame because they could go places with another superstar. Westbrook had 31 points, 5 rebounds, 11 assists, and a steal. Green went off for 27 points, 15 boards, and 6 dimes. He did have 7 turnovers, which prevented him from taking home the title all to himself for today.
Saturday’s worst: Mike James. After a few strong games, he fails to score in 26 minutes, missing all 6 shots. He’s got Javaris Crittenton breathing down his back, but even he had a bad game, scoreless in 18 minutes. No shocker that the Wiz got blown out by the Spurs.
Keep an eye on: James Singleton. Who? Yeah, I dunno. What I do know is that he scored 19 points and grabbed 12 boards with a couple steals and a block tonight. That’s something worth watching.
What to watch for tomorrow: Boston at Phoenix is the best game on the docket. Two teams without their best player, and we’ll see how the Suns adjust to not being able to score 140 on a weak team. Worth watching on national TV at least.
Posted by Brandon Haraway Categories: Disses, Props, Rookies, Talent, Boston Celtics, New York Knicks, Chicago Bulls, Miami Heat, Dallas Mavericks, Portland Trailblazers, Golden State Warriors, Phoenix Suns
Thursday actually turned out to be a real good basketball day. In the three games, a last second Shawn Marion dunk pushed the Heat past the Bulls, the Celts had to outscore the Mavericks by 13 to win in the 4th, and the Warriors just about threw away a game that should have been locked up halfway through the 4th. Let me say this. Jamal Crawford’s shot selection is awful. Oh, and Monta Ellis can ball. Dude is legit.
Thursday’s best: Easy one here. Rajon Rondo baby. His line: 19 points, 15 rebounds, 14 assists, and a steal on 9-14 shooting. That’s right kiddies, his second career trip-doub. Good enough for me. At the same time, I’m inclined to drive down to US Airways Center first thing Friday morning and slap Robert Sarver upside his greedy little face.
Thursday’s worst: Luol Deng. Who can figure this guy out? He’s really struggling overall this year, with some really good streaks and some really awful streaks. Stuff like this makes me really believe that the Bulls are cursed. This is the guy John Paxson refused to trade for KOBE BRYANT. His line? A studly 6 points, 3 boards, 1 dime. Nice, dude. Nice.
Keep an eye on: Golden State. Something tells me they’ve got a trade up their sleeve. And a good deal can really let them make some noise. I know, they’re 12 games out of the playoffs. But if Phoenix blows things up, they’re sitting in 9th. It’s not too crazy to imagine, and they look like they might be heating up.
What to watch for tomorrow: The Rookie Challenge! What an awful game this usually is (besides the two LeBron James/Dwyane Wade/Carmelo Anthony years). But hey, it’s a basketball game with no defense. Sort of like watching the Knicks play themselves in scrimmage. Except there’s a little bit of talent in the rookie/sophomore game.
I’ll still bringing you this column all weekend, taking a look into the All-Star festivities. Aren’t you just lucky.
Posted by Brandon Haraway Categories: Disses, Injuries, Props, Trades, Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Milwaukee Bucks, Atlanta Hawks, Orlando Magic, San Antonio Spurs, Portland Trailblazers, Utah Jazz, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix Suns
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.
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.
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?
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