The other big winner is Kirk Hinrich. Hinrich goes from playing shooting guard for the paltry Wizards to the starting point guard for the Hawks. His numbers should definitely rise with an increase in minutes. He has always managed to be a capable, but not spectacular player, now with a strong supporting class, he should manage to raise his status to a reliable option at point guard. The best part about it is that he is still available in most leagues.
The final player, who you should definitely make note about is Chase Budinger. Budinger should now start getting guaranteed minutes as the starting small forward. When inserted into the starting lineup, he has managed to put up some impressive numbers including a 30 point and 8 rebound night. With Houston’s wide open offense, the former Arizona Wildcat should be a safe bet at picking up a high point total and decent rebound total each night .Budinger should be someone you definitely consider, especially if you’re lacking some depth in the power forward position.
The biggest loser is Baron Davis. And this isn’t the type of biggest loser challenge where you lose weight and win, even though the former Bruin could spare some pounds. Now that he has been relegated to the suckiness of Cleveland, you have to wonder if he will spend his attempting to record double-doubles or eating ho-ho’s. Then he might be able to go on the Biggest Loser and win that thing. just can’t believe that Davis, who already has been dogged in the past about motivation, will give anything at all for the Cavs. You may see his point total rise because he will be able to pull whenever he wants, but that should be about it.
The other big loser is Nicolas Batum. Batum has shown flashes of being a productive fantasy player this season, but you never know what you will get. Now with Gerald Wallace taking over as the Blazers’ starting small forwrad, Batum will once again be relegated to bench duty. Add in the fact that Branden Roy is back from injuries and it should further dent Batum’s time on the court. Combine all of this and it’s probably time to cut ties.
Jeff Green is another player whose value took a real hit as he went from being a starter in Oklahoma City to the already stacked bench of the Celtics. This is a guy who now has two superstars in front of him in Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnet. You have to expect Green, who has never been a true scorer, to drop considerably more in numerous statistical categories.
PG - Mike Bibby (MIA?)
With news that the Wizards will buy out Mike Bibby’s contract, rumors are circulating that he will end up in Miami. The Big 2 3/4 (I refuse to name Chris Bosh as one of the Big 3) in Miami should help considerably in raising Bibby’s mediocre assist totals. He also could see his points and most importantly his 3 point totals rise. Once it has been confirmed that he is headed to the Heat, I would have no qualm with picking him up.
Still, the Heat need a big man to help Bosh defend underneath. This may help Bibby’s fantasy value, but I’m not sure how much it improves the Heat’s chances of winning an NBA title.
SG - Wesley Johnson (MIN) 9.1 PTS 2.9 REB 2.0 AST 1.3 3PM
Johnson’s minutes have increased after Corey Brewer was shipped out of town. With increased minutes he has managed to produce quality point and 3 pointer totals. In his last two games he has put together games of 22 and 17 points. Johnson should manage to get you double digits each night, while also adding in solid production in every category.
SF - Shane Battier (MEM) 8.5 PTS 1.5 3PM 4.7 REB 2.6 AST 1.0 STL 1.0 BLK
Battier has always managed to guarantee his fantasy owners a full stat sheet every season. He never puts up spectacular numbers, yet always manages to get just enough of every category to be a solid fantasy starter. With Rudy Gay out with an injury for the next month or so, Battier’s minutes look all but guaranteed. As always the only downside to Battier is the fact that he lacks solid point production, but you would be crazy not to add him to your squad because he is such a stat sheet stuffer.
PF – Chase Budinger (HOU) 15.0 PTS 1.5 3PM 4.7 REB 1.5 AST
As noted above Budinger has all the tools to be a solid power forward. And the kid can stroke it. He knocks down nearly two threes a game and who wouldn’t welcome a stat like that, especially out of the power forward position. Add in the fact that his rebound totals should continue rise and it makes him a solid add.
C – Glenn Davis (BOS) 11.7 PTS 5.2 REB 1.3 AST 1.0 STL
Big Baby should see his minutes increase with Kendrick Perkins being traded away. With Shaq and Jermaine O’Neal still nursing injuries, Davis should see his production rise close to a double-double average. Look, Doc Rivers and the Celtics are going to rest Shaq, and maybe even Jermain O’Neal, even after they return from injury to assure that they are rested and ready to go for the playoffs. So, Big Baby will continue to see minutes throughout the remainder of the season. The real key for Davis is staying out of foul trouble. That is the only thing that is limiting him from being a solid option, day-in and day-out, at the center spot.