Fantasy Outlook – Bench Putting Up Big Fantasy Stats

By Matt Rochinski
December 27, 2012

It’s not often you see a player coming off the bench that is putting up starter’s stats and minutes for your fantasy team, but it does happen. Usually, these are the players in contention for the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year Award at the end of each season. If Ramon Sessions continues to put up the numbers he is for the Bobcats, he should be mentioned in those conversations, and you should not be afraid to roll him out as a starter on your fantasy squad. Sessions is currently second on the Cats in scoring (14.7 points) and assists (4.1) in 26.8 minutes off the bench. He adds 3.1 rebounds and doesn’t turn it over much (1.79) while getting to the line once every 4.7 minutes he plays. His 158 free-throw attempts and 132 makes both lead the team and at 83.5 percent from the charity stripe, he’s second behind only Ben Gordon (86.0 percent) on the squad. In the what-have-you-done-for-me-lately mentality of many fantasy owners, it’s great to see Sessions averaging 19.8 points and 3.3 assists in four of the Cats last five games as he tries to help push Charlotte back into the win column.

Following a disappointing season in Washington last season, Andray Blatche had to be hoping a change of scenery would give him another chance when he signed with Brooklyn in the offseason. While it was slow going for Blatche with the Nets at first – he averaged 9.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and 17.7 minutes in November – he has seen his production increase significantly as we head towards the New Year. Blatche is posting averages of 13.8 points, 6.4 rebounds, 1.90 steals and 24.5 minutes through 13 games in December and has become a key piece inside off Brooklyn’s bench. It will be interesting to see how, or if, Blatche continues to contribute with Head Coach Avery Johnson having been fired today. It took some time and a Brook Lopez injury for Johnson to develop some confidence in Blatche and it’s uncertain whether a new coach will be ready to take that chance with the Nets big man. Now might be a good time to take a risk on this high-risk/high-reward player in your fantasy league.

Speaking of reserves putting up starters stats, Ryan Anderson has been a nice addition for the Hornets this season. After coming over in a summer trade with the Orlando Magic, Anderson has jumped in and out of the Hornets starting lineup for most of the season but has continues to produce in whatever capacity deemed necessary. On the season, he’s leading New Orleans with 17.7 points to go with 6.8 rebounds and 1.3 steals. A marksman from outside the arc, Anderson is first in the NBA in 3-pointers made (89) and attempted (223) this season. While he’s struggled a bit coming off the bench for the Hornets the last five games, seeing his averages dip to 13.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.00 steals in 31.4 minutes, few reserves give you the ability to score in bunches the way Anderson does. He’s scored 20-or-more points in 11 games this season, including two 30+point games.

Related Links
Chat Live vs. Nets
Chat Live vs. Hornets
Preview: Sophs Key to Weekend Set

Past Fantasy Outlooks
Kemba's West Coast Matchups
Henderson, Redick Becoming More Versatile
Reserve Guards, Fantasy Gold
Youth and Experience Valuable in Fantasy
Gordon and Melo Peak Performers
Not-So-Risky Pickups
Reserves Playing Like Fantasy Starters
Consistency Counts for Haywood
Cats Guards Locked In
Is MKG Heading for Fantasy Breakout?
Mullens, Lopez and Mayo Sleepers Waking Up Fantasy World
Walker and Gortat Filling Stat Sheets