Fantasy Outlook – Injuries Provide New Options

By Matt Rochinski
January 10, 2013

No fan of any sport likes to see injuries on the court, field, diamond or ice, but when you’re a diehard fantasy player, it’s important to keep an eye on who’s in and who’s out around whatever league it might be so you can scoop up a backup or reserve who might see their playing time increase with other players out. When the Cats head to Toronto and Indiana this weekend, we’ll see three players who are owned in less than 10 percent of leagues who could make an impact on your fantasy squad.

Bismack Biyombo got off to a slow start in new Head Coach Mike Dunlap’s system early in the season. He didn’t score in double digits until an 11-point performance against Toronto on November 21, had just one double-digit rebounding game in the month of November and had just one start prior to December 8 against San Antonio. However, with injuries along the way to Tyrus Thomas and Byron Mullens, Biyombo’s number has been called much more often the last month-and-a-half. He’s racked up 16-straight starts and is averaging 5.4 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.35 blocks when he tips things off for the Cats. His seven double-digit rebounding performances and two double-doubles, capped by a 10-point, 17-rebound display on January 6 in Detroit show he’s feeling more comfortable in Coach Dunlap’s system. Despite all this, Biz is still only owned in 4.5 percent of leagues. If you need rebounds and blocks from a guy who qualifies at power forward and center, taking a chance on Biyombo isn’t as risky now as it was at the beginning of the season.

Bobcats fans might remember the name Alan Anderson from the earlier stages of the franchise. Anderson played in Charlotte in the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons, averaging 5.8 points and 1.9 rebounds in 53 games with the Cats. After being out of the league for four seasons, Anderson got a break with the Raptors last year and has been making the most of his opportunity. He’s averaging 11.8 points, 2.1 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.1 steals in 18 games with Toronto and has been sparked by a career-best 27 points against Oklahoma City on Sunday. With injuries to Terrence Ross (ankle) and Linas Kleiza (knee), Anderson’s opportunities should continue. He could be a nice filler if you’re looking for some small forward help the next couple weeks. He’s only owned in 8.0 percent of leagues so he should be available in yours.

Third-year shooting guard Lance Stephenson has grasped the brass ring in front of him with Danny Granger (knee) sidelined, as well. After playing in just 54 games his first two years and averaging 2.6 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 10.3 minutes, Stephenson is putting up 7.8 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.6 assists in 27.0 minutes as a starter for the Pacers. He will hurt your free-throw percentage – he’s just 58.1 percent from the charity stripe – but if you’re running out of options at shooting guard, Stephenson is owned in just 5.5 percent of leagues and could fill in if need be.

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