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2012 Fantasy Basketball: Jeremy Lin, LeBron James, John Wall, Tim Duncan and More

For what it’s worth, Jeremy Lin (0.16) is owned in 88% of Yahoo leagues.

That means 2 things: 1) there is at least 1 owner in 88% of leagues who is paying attention to their team; 2) I was way off in my previous assumptions that the Dead League number was closer to 33% (which has been my general assumption for the past several years). Either that or it shows just how wide ranging the impact of Lin has been when he can get even casual fantasy owners to stop hitting on girls, eating wings and drinking beer, and just generally partying for long enough to be like “Oh, dude, I’m going to go check my fantasy league to see if Jeremy Lin is available.”

Of course, this d-bag that I imagine when I think of the casual fantasy owner (aka the guy who’s football season ended right when basketball started this year and thought it would be just as cool and fun and easy to play fantasy basketball) is now going to tell all the girls he’s hitting on (in between shots of Captain Morgan) that he totally picked up Jeremy Lin and is now dominating his fantasy league.

Which undoubtedly makes his enthralled subjects want to bounce around with him on a trampoline just like Bar Refaeli did with Chris Paul. Chris Paul owner’s may have to turn it off halfway through because I cringed at every shot of them bouncing on the trampoline and had visions of lighting money on fire and tossing it in a wastebasket and I don’t even have Chris Paul on any of my teams. If you make it to the end though, note how they’re like: High five, cheek kiss, say goodbye, and arms still around each other’s waist as the camera cuts. Bar’s new (yet-to-launch) underwear site is called Indeed.

Where was I? Oh yeah, so Jeremy Lin had 27 points and 11 assists on 45% shooting (only 63% from the line though), but he did have 8 turnovers, pushing him down to #82 on the night according to the Player Rater. But, he did hit the game winning three-pointer looking like an assassin with ice in his veins. I’m sure if last night’s Line of the Night player had anything to say about it, it would be something like “I can’t feel my face.”

Line of the Night: I’m not sure if Nick Young‘s hand covered his face at any point, but in racking up his 3.07 on the Player Rater via 35 points (7 threes, 12-17 from the field, 4-4 from the line, 2 steals) he certainly seemed comfortably numb.

Honorable Mentions: There are a lot of people worried about Jose Calderon (2.69) (if the comments here are any indication), but last night’s 25 points (3 threes, 11-17 from the field), 7 rebounds, 9 assists, and 3 steals should help to settle some nerves. Or else just spur talk of trading him while he’s high (not literally, of course).

Without Derrick Rose in the lineup (back spasms) Joakim Noah (2.57) stepped up with 22 points (7-11 from the field), 11 rebounds, and 4 blocks, as did teammate Luol Deng (2.14) who had 23 points (9-9 from the line), 7 rebounds, and 11 assists. Despite the best intentions of DeMarcus Cousins (1.98) and Tyreke Evans (1.97), the Bulls pulled off the win against the Kings. Cousins had a fairly monstrous 28 points, 17 rebounds, 3 steals, and 2 blocks, but if you’re not getting 20 rebounds, you’re just not elite. Evans, meanwhile, ate things up with 27 points (8-8 from the line), 8 rebounds, 8 assists (pun intended).

LeBron James (2.45) had a bit more competition last night where fantasy is concerned, and his 23 points, 9 rebounds, 7 assists, and 4 steals weren’t quite as impressive as the previous night’s line.

John Wall (2.12) led the Wizards to their first win in Portland in a long time with 29 points (10-14 from the field), 9 assists, and even 2 blocks. Nicolas Batum (1.98) tried to stop Wall with his 33 points (3 threes, 6-6 from the line), but the Blazers still lost by 15 (though fantasy owners won because of the 124-109 final score).

Tim Duncan (1.77) had his 5th straight double-double with 18 points (4-4 from the line), 13 rebounds, 2 steals, and 3 blocks.


Waiver Wire Line of the Night: There was absolutely no mention of Channing Frye in the game recap, so I can only assume he got in early foul trouble (he had 3) and Markieff Morris (2.29) was hot, so Alan Gentry just left him in en route to 21 points, 6 rebounds, 4 steals, 2 blocks (9% owned). The Suns Forwards (Frye, Morris, Dudley, Hill) are one of the great fantasy basketball debates of 2011-12. Frye is still starting, and had been playing pretty well, but he is a very up and down player, and when he’s down, Morris will take advantage. Unfortunately, I don’t think there’s any legitimate fantasy leagues that let you change your lineups in the middle of a game, so it’s hard to know if you should play Morris now or wait to see if Hill is sitting for another game and if Frye is really in another cold streak and then try to get Morris in your lineup (just in time for Frye to heat up again).

With Grant Hill out, Jared Dudley moved to SF and Michael Redd (0.91) started at SG for the Suns, ending up with 20 points (3 threes), and 6 rebounds (5% owned). Hill was evidently just spending some quality time with Steve Nash, so I’m not sure what Redd’s situation will be going forward. Perhaps he’ll be promoted to starter after that game and Grant will simply come off the bench instead.

Pick Up Lines: The Nuggets started Kostas Koufos (5 fouls) and Kenneth Faried (3 fouls) up front, so I’m assuming that Chris Andersen (1.74) is a pretty good “Add” while Nene is out. Anderson played only 22 minutes, but scored 16 points (6-9 from the field), with 7 rebounds, and 6 blocks (3% owned). Speaking of Kosta Koufos (1.51), despite his 5 fouls, he managed to put up 9 points, 9 rebounds, 5 steals, and 3 blocks (2% owned). As the starting center for the Nuggets, he should probably be added before Anderson. Koufos has already put up a few good games (good for a free agent, at least).

Kyle Korver (1.24) scored 18 points thanks to 4 threes in 21 minutes. He was 5-7 from the field, and 4-4 from the line (23% owned). With Richard Hamilton out for the past 9 games, Korver has been worth owning thanks to his 2 threes per game and decent-but-limited contribution in other categories.

Jordan Crawford (1.19) had a good game: 21 points, 4 assists, 3 steals (21% owned). I wouldn’t read too much into it.

Biggest Loser: You can thank me (though I wasn’t the one who posted that huge picture on this blog) for Gordon Hayward‘s (-1.23) horrible 0 points on 0-6 shooting night. I picked him up again, triggering some sort of evil white player bond where he started playing like me. Sorry about that. I didn’t sleep too well last night, but luckily, the Jazz don’t play again until Friday, so perhaps by then I’ll be rested up for the Wizards. Or perhaps Hayward will have gone to a voodoo doctor to break the link. Or he’ll just play well cause it’s the Wizards.

Hey look! It’s Luis Scola (-1.00) with 9 points, 5 rebounds, 0 assists, and 5 turnovers. It must be tough to hang on to a guy who’s best game is 21 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists and nothing else with 40% shooting from the field and 60% from the line. That is why you would have found Scola on my Do Not Draft list at the beginning of this season. He’s not your traditional “bad girlfriend” because when he is on, he does have one redeeming quality: sizable points. But the rest of his body of work is kind of lumpy, or else non-existent, or else just really ugly. I’m sure he has a great personality though.

Daily rankings and stats come from the GMTR H2H Player Rater (beta version). They are based on the stat Wins Above Replacement Player (WARP) an estimate of the number of wins a player produces per week in H2H leagues over a replacement (waiver wire) player.

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