Fantasy Forecast: Trade deadline rumors running rampant




Week 11 is here and the NBA trade deadline is fast approaching (March 15th), so I thought we’d go through some players that are on the trade block and look at their potential fantasy value should they move:

Dwight Howard: The Orlando Magic are in a pickle with Howard because he is unwilling to sign an extension with any teams they talk to, and because of that, no team is willing to trade anything worth having for him. There have been rumors that the Magic have contacted the Golden State Warriors about trading for Monta Ellis, in a last ditch effort to keep Howard long-term. The problem there is the Warriors will only trade Ellis for Howard. This saga is going to play out until the final minutes, but the Magic have to trade him or they will have another Shaquille O’Neal situation on their hands, where their franchise players leaves via free agency and they get nothing in return for him.

Rajon Rondo: Rondo has been the subject of recent rumors, but the Celtics are likely to only trade him in the “right” deal. The Celtics are an old team and if they can’t win it all this season, the Celtics would be better off trading Rondo since people close to the organization have said he is too competitive to be happy on a losing team. There have been no strong links to the trade rumors, so this may be nothing more than wishful thinking for teams with no PG.

Michael Beasley: There have been rumors that the Celtics, Lakers and Nets all have had some contact with the Timberwolves in regards to Beasley. The reality is that with Derrick Williams playing well, Beasley could be used as part of a package to add an additional pick or a scoring guard to the mix. In fantasy terms Beasley can score about 15 points and grab about 5 rebounds a night, and his future value will be roughly the same weather he comes off the bench or starts with a different team.

Chris Kaman: The Hornets are showcasing Kaman and actively shopping him around the league. The problem here is that wherever he lands, he won’t be given carte blanche to shoot whenever he feels like it. Kaman is a sell-high candidate in any format because when he is traded, he won’t be scoring 20 points while grabbing 10-plus boards and playing 35-plus minutes a night.

L.A. Lakers: The Lakers are looking for a PG, and just about anyone will do as long as they aren’t currently on the Lakers roster. Guys like Ramon Sessions, Kirk Hinrich and Reymond Felton have all been linked to the Lakers, but Sessions I think is at the top of their list. Whoever goes to L.A. should be picked up immediately as they will have plenty of minutes to play and plenty of assists with Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol looking for shots.

The Lakers also have a need at SF, since the Artest formerly known as Ron-Ron is averaging just 5.3 points, 2.8 rebounds and 2.0 assists this season. There have been no solid links to a SF and the Lakers, but they are definitely in the market, so keep your eyes open.

Start ‘em

Isaiah Thomas: Thomas is still owned in just under 60 percent of leagues out there, yet he is averaging 17.8 points, 6.7 assists and 3.8 rebounds a night over the past two weeks. Those numbers rank him #27 over that time for all fantasy players in the NBA. If he is available in your league, go grab him right this second!

Jordan Crawford: Crawford is another guy that is white hot, putting up 24.0 points with 3.0 3-pointers, assists and rebounds nightly over the past two weeks. And like Thomas, he is owned in 55 percent of leagues and should be added. He has been mentioned in trade rumors as well, so he is certainly someone I would target in any format.

Trevor Ariza: If Ariza coming back from an illness is big news for fantasy owners, then we might be in the last days. But, that is actually the case as he is expected back this week and the Hornets desperately need his scoring ability. I’d play Ariza and then get right with Jesus… just in case.

Ersan Ilyasova: Ersan Who? Yes, Ilyasova is someone I like and he is still available in about 25 percent of leagues out there. The guy is putting up 17.6 points, 11.7 rebounds and shooting 51.0 percent from the field over the last two weeks. Those are crazy numbers for a guy that 100 percent of owners got off the waiver wire.

Drew Gooden: Gooden is one of the more erratic players that I own, but since center is such a thin position in fantasy basketball, he is a must-own player. His stats will fluctuate between his 26-point nights and the 7 points he scored on Saturday night. So understand that he is a roller coaster ride, but it is a ride that can produce 20-plus points and 10-plus rebounds a few times a week.

Sit ‘em

Greivis Vasquez: If you still own Vasquez, cut him right now for Thomas. I see some big-box websites telling his owners to hold him until the Hornets unleash their young talent and Jarrett Jack is forgotten. The truth is that Coach Monty Williams is riding the hot hand at PG and Jack will continue to cancel out the value that Vasquez had a few weeks back. I would trade him or cut him before his value flattens out.

Joe Johnson: Johnson is dealing with knee problems that have sidelined him for the last two games. The Hawks play 4-games this week, but he isn’t 100 percent and the knee is reaping havoc on his stats. Since the tendinitis is going to be a problem all season long, I’d float him in trade talks and see what you can get on name value.

Lamar Odom: Odom is someone I would cut loose any way possible as he is going to be a basketcase going forward. In his return from a 10-day absence, he scored just 9 points while adding 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 blocks in 18 minutes. That is about as good as it gets for the reality TV star and his value is marginal even in deeper leagues.

Tim Duncan: Duncan and the Spurs play just 2-games this week and Duncan isn’t close to the player he once was. This season he is averaging just 14.2 points and 8.6 rebounds a night, and the 1.6 blocks aren’t enough to make up for the lack of points. He is still a starting PF in fantasy formats, but he is ranking out as the #65 player in fantasy basketball this season. Strange enough, Duncan was drafted as player 63.4 on average this season.

JaVale McGee: McGee is more of a be careful play than a true sit play since he is in and out of the doghouse more than any player in the NBA. The Wizards insist they are not trying to teach McGee a lesson with the benching, but his “style over substance” play is obviously wearing on the team’s nerves. When he is on, he comes up big for fantasy owners. But, he also spends a lot of time on the bench because of his style of play as well.

For more Fantasy advice, follow James Morris on Twitter or on Facebook and tune into SiriusXM channel 87 and Sirius channel 210 every Thursday at 9:30 a.m. CT when he talks NBA fantasy hoops.