Fantasy Forecast: Week 19
This year’s trade deadline was an exciting one, with more moves than I can ever remember. Some were good, some were bad and some were just downright ugly. Let’s break them down and see where the fantasy impact lies and what you should know with these players moving forward.
Knicks send Wilson Chandler, Raymond Felton, Danilo Gallinari, Timofey Mozgov, the Knicks' 2014 first-round draft pick, the Warriors' 2012 second-round pick, the Warriors' 2013 second-round pick and $3 million in cash to the Nuggets for Carmelo Anthony, Chauncey Billups, Shelden Williams, Anthony Carter and Renaldo Balkman.
The only real value change here is for Felton and Ty Lawson. Both are going to be a timeshare situation and will end up canceling each other out. I would personally look to cut both for someone like Chase Budinger or Luke Ridnour at PG. Gallinari and Chandler will both still have starting fantasy value, but Chandler looks more like a utility start whereas Gallinari is a full SF start.
Celtics send Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson to the Thunder for Jeff Green and Nenad Krstic
This is going to be one of the most talked about trades this season by far. Given that Perkins is going to miss 2-3 weeks with a sprained MCL and he still has to gel with his new team, He is still a double-double threat every time he is on the floor, but he could see sub 30 minute nights the rest of this season, so his value might take a slight dip. Green put up an empty seven points in 18 minutes in his first game with the Celtics. He will get better as he figures his timing and spacing out on the floor, but it will be a bumpy ride. Krstic is going to split minutes with Glen Davis and Shaquille O’Neal, so his value is limited. If you are desperate at center, you can give him a look. Robinson is going to hold similar value with the Thunder as he did with the Celtics and shouldn’t be owned in fantasy leagues unless Russell Westbrook is injured.
Celtics send Semih Erden and Luke Harangody to the Cavaliers for a 2nd Round Pick
Erden had been impressive this season with his inside presence, but he needs to improve his overall game and bulk up a bit this off-season. Harangody doesn’t matter in fantasy circles, even in the deepest of leagues, so don’t worry about him. Given how sad of a team the Cavaliers are right now, Erden might be a sneaky waiver wire add-and-stash. I am going on record right now and saying he has a 50-50 shot to start before the season is over.
Bobcats send Gerald Wallace to the Trail Blazers for Joel Przybilla, Dante Cunningham, two 1st round picks, and Sean Marks
Why did the Trail Blazers have to go out and create an even worse logjam at the wing by adding Wallace to a lineup that already feature Wesley Matthews, Nicolas Batum and Brandon Roy? Do they not know we are trying to win a fantasy title here! Wallace takes a fantasy hit with this move, but he still does enough with the other stats to keep him on the roster. Roy is going to be off and on as the minutes get figured out and he comes back from his injury. If you have been stashing him, you are in for a rollercoaster fantasy ride. Matthews and Batum both take a fantasy hit as the Blazers have basically set up a SG/SF by committee and they all cancel each other out. Gerald Henderson moves into the starting SG spot for the Bobcats and should be picked up in the 83 percent of leagues he is available in. Przybilla, Cunningham and Marks can all be ignored.
Rockets send Shane Battier to the Grizzlies for Hasheem Thabeet and a 1st Round Pick
Thabeet is a long-term project that has a 90 percent chance of never working out. I’m going on record right now as saying that Thabeet is going to go down as a major draft bust and I wouldn’t come within 10 feet of picking him up. Battier is a borderline player to own in most formats and pretty much holds the same value with the Grizzlies. Look for something in the range of 25-30 MPG with on and off nights from him. He is someone that will be added and dropped many more times in your league before the season is over.
Rockets send Aaron Brooks to the Suns for Goran Dragic
Brooks will back up Steve Nash for the Suns, just as he backed up Kyle Lowry for the Rockets. Back-ups don’t generally hold fantasy value, so leave him on the wire. Chase Budinger is the real winner here as he moves into the starting SF spot and should be picked up in all formats. Lowry solidifies his spot, but his value doesn’t really change going forward. Dragic is going to have to earn his minutes with the Suns and I don’t want him on my fantasy squad until I see a clear reason to add him. Chuck Hayes was being touted as a sell-high candidate by some of the main-stream fantasy sights before the deadline, but he just got a big boost in value with the addition of Thabeet and the loss of Dragic. Since he is only owned in 39 percent of leagues, I’d look to add him if you can.
Clippers send Baron Davis and a 2011 first-round pick to the Cavaliers for Mo Williams and Jamario Moon.
This is the worst trade of the deadline in my personal opinion. Davis clashed with Head Coach Byron Scott while both were with the Hornets. The secondary problem is that Davis has a long history of not being able to get excited enough to produce and he was just getting happy about throwing ally-oops to Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan. Williams wasn’t happy about being traded, but I bet you dollars to doughnuts that all changes when he realizes that he gets to play with Griffin instead of Antawn Jamison and J.J. Hickson. When Williams comes back, he will be worth adding provided his head is on right.
Sunday night Troy Murphy reached a buy-out agreement with the Warriors. As part of the agreement, Murphy can only sign with an Eastern Conference team, so look for him to sign with the Celtics, Heat or Magic before Tuesday so he will be eligible for the NBA playoffs.
Mike Bibby is expected to meet with the Wizards on Monday regarding a buyout. The Miami Heat have been mentioned as a possible landing spot for Bibby, but shots there are limited to say the least. If you are desperate for a PG and Bibby is on the wire, give him a look and pray this happens.
PG – Luke Ridnour: Jonny Flynn has pretty much fallen off the fantasy map and Ridnour is now a must-start going forward. He is capable of putting up starter numbers for your fantasy squad and I wouldn’t hesitate to add him if you are in one of the 46 percent of leagues he is available in.
SG – Landry Fields: Fields is on a team that is on the rise. Defenses are going to be focusing more on Melo and Amare, so Fields will see more open shots and that is good news for fantasy owners. He is still available in 32 percent of leagues, so he just might be available in yours. He isn’t going to be a stud, but those with Mike Dunleavy or O.J. Mayo would get more use out of Fields.
SF – Chase Budinger: Over the past week Budinger has averaged 22.3 points and 6.0 rebounds, good enough for a top 20 fantasy ranking over that time period. Budinger is one of the hottest waiver wire adds right now and I would sprint to add him.
PF – Boris Diaw: After all the fallout from the Gerald Wallace move was done, Diaw was a winner because he had one less player to share touches with. The problem is that he went out and put up two points on 1-of-6 shooting with three rebounds, two assists and two steals in 29 minutes against the Kings on Friday night. What that does make him though is a great buy-low candidate from skittish owners.
C – Marcin Gortat: I am going to keep pumping Gortat, just as I did with Ryan Anderson, because not enough people are paying attention to him. Over the past two weeks he has averaged nearly a double-double (14.0 points and 9.6 rebounds) vs. the 7.8 points and 4.2 rebounds a night Robin Lopez puts up. Even if Lopez starts, Gortat is the center to own from the Suns.
PG – Ty Lawson and Raymond Felton: It’s not that either one can’t or won’t have a good game. Rather, you don’t know which one will win the PG battle and both played terribly in an overtime loss where they both saw 34 minutes. Like I said above, Lawson and Felton are likely to cancel each other out since you never know when either will have a good game or who will get the majority of the minutes.
SG – O.J. Mayo: Mayo was almost traded to the Pacers at the deadline, but the deal fell apart and Mayo is back to being fantasy waiver wire fodder. Could someone… ANYONE please explain why he is still owned in 73 percent of leagues despite averaging the emptiest 11.5 PPG you can average in 20:30 MPG over the past month?
SF - Carlos Delfino: Delfino is the starter with the Bucks, but he is shooting just 37.7 percent from the field for the season. Over the past two weeks he is putting up 14.8 points and 6.2 rebounds a night, but his shooting kills you in leagues that count FG, FT or 3-point percentages.
PF – Rudy Gay: The problem with playing an 82 game season is that many fantasy owners take the Ronco rotisserie approach and just set it and forget it. Gay is out for at least the next month, meaning even if he does return in exactly four weeks, he will only play in roughly 12 games. Knowing that, he is still started in nearly 50 percent of leagues and owned in 80 percent of leagues. It is safe to just cut him loose.
C – DeAndre Jordan: Chris Kaman is back and ready to take back his starting job at center. That is obviously bad news for Jordan since he is averaging just 5.6 rebounds and 4.9 points a night over the past two weeks. If you still own Jordan, and aren’t in an 16-team or deeper league, go ahead and cut him loose.
James Morris hails from Rio Rancho, N.M., and has been playing fantasy sports since 1997. In addition to writing the Timberwolves Fantasy Forecast, Morris also writes fantasy articles for the Boston Celtics, and Indiana Pacers, as well as the NFL fantasy forecast for the Cincinnati Bengals, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Arizona Cardinals. You can also find him on Twitter or get him on Facebook for all your fantasy sports updates.