2012 Fantasy Basketball: LeBron James, Al Jefferson, Jason Terry, Dirk Nowitzki and More


Line of the Night: With Dwyane Wade sitting out yet another game on the second night of a Miami back-to-back, LeBron James (2.62) took over for the Heat last night, scoring 37 points – including Miami’s last 17 straight – adding 6 rebounds and 7 assists and going 14-15 from the line to lead the Heat to a 101-98 win over the Nets. Hey, it was the Nets, but still an impressive run from James nonetheless. Unfortunately, Miami still has two more sets of back-to-back games this season, so expect Wade and possibly even LeBron to get a couple more games off down the stretch.

Honorable Mentions: Utah and Dallas played a triple-OT game that ended with Utah winning 123-121, so it’s no surprise to see Al Jefferson (2.60) at the top of the fantasy list today. Jefferson had a beastly 28 points, 26 rebounds and 2 blocked shots in an OT enhanced 54 minutes. To which Kevin Love responded, “Hey, I do that stuff in a normal game.”

Dirk Nowitzki (2.36) played 53 minutes in the game, scoring 40 points (on 12-12 from the line), with 9 rebounds and 6 assists. Interestingly, other than Jason Kidd (1.26) who had 10 points, 5 boards, 6 assists and 4 steals in 45 minutes, no other Mavs starter saw more than 27 minutes in the game. Jason Terry (1.17) did get 54 minutes off the bench though and scored 27 points.

The Jazz meanwhile played all of their starters at least 45 minutes, so even a guy like DeMarre Carroll (0.85) – with 15 points and 6 assists – had a good game. However, it meant that Derrick Favors (2 points, 3 rebounds) still only saw 13 minutes off the bench in this one.

Jrue Holiday (2.30) continued his up and down run lately with a solid 18 points, 4 threes, 8 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks as the Sixers beat a short-handed Magic team. Andre Iguodala (1.84) – who has had his share of downs lately as well – finished with 15 points, 3 threes, 8 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals. The Sixers still have 6 games remaining this season, making a lot of Sixers worth playing despite their team wide game-to-game inconsistency.

The real Ryan Anderson (2.12) also showed up after shooting a combined 7-33 in his previous 3 games. He finished with 26 points (on 11-16 from the field), with 16 rebounds. Anderson should make a very strong play the rest of the season with Howard out, provided he can continue to shoot straight.

Jeff Teague (2.14) bounced back from a horrible game against the Raptors to have a really good game against the Raptors on the second night of a back-to-back. He finished with 19 points, 6 rebounds and 10 assists for only his third double-double of the year.

Speaking of bouncing back, Channing Frye’s (1.89) game went MIA over the last week, just in time to tank a lot of owners’ championship hopes. But Frye is back this week, scoring 19 points (on 8-11 from the field), with 6 rebounds and 2 blocks in only 25 minutes of run. It’s his first double-digit scoring game in his last five.

Klay Thompson (1.71) is officially on fire. Thompson scored 29 points against the Spurs, adding 8 boards and 5 assists in 43 minutes. He’s scored a total of 77 points in his last three games and has a one-week WARP value of 1.40, which is off the charts good. I think the kid is a keeper.

Finally, the Pacers beat the Wolves 111-88 thanks to Roy Hibbert’s (1.82) 12 points, 11 rebounds and 5 blocks. Danny Granger (1.57) added 19, 7, and 5, while David West made it a party with 22 points and 10 boards. Hell, even Paul George (1.30) looked good in this game with 18 points, 5 boards and a couple of threes. That’s four Pacers in the top-25 performances for yesterday.


Waiver Wire Line of the Night: In a matter of a few games, Nate Robinson (1.95) has gone from being buried on the Warriors’ bench behind Chris Jenkins to the Warriors’ mighty sixth man getting 30 minutes a game. Yesterday was more of the good Nate Robinson, as he got 31 minutes of run against the Spurs and finished with 30 points, 3 threes, and 7 assists. Keep riding Robinson for the rest of the season if you need points, assists and threes as long as he continues to get big minutes off the bench.

Pick Up Lines: Vince Carter (1.90) played 44 minutes thanks to the Mavs/Jazz triple OT game and saw a nice stat boost because of that: 18 points, 3 threes, 12 rebounds and 4 assists. On most nights, however, Carter will see 20-something minutes and he hasn’t been consistent enough on the court to be worth picking up.

Chandler Parsons (1.79) tied his career high with 21 points, adding 3 steals against the Nuggets. At this point, everyone has probably had a ride with Parsons and I think we have all left feeling a little under whelmed with the experience. Houston still has 4 games remaining this week, so a guy like Parsons could have value for owners looking to pick up a few games this week.

The same thing applies to Samuel Dalembert (1.29), who got the surprise start in place of Marcus Camby, who sat last night due to a sore back (the second most popular injury this year). Dalembert only scored 5 points in the game, but finished with 9 boards and 7 blocks in 24 minutes. The Rockets play again on Wednesday, and if Camby can’t go in that game, Dalembert make a nice play if you need boards/blocks.

Kevin Seraphin (1.42) – who was a one man wrecking crew against my team in the GMTR Dynasty League finals – continued to roll with 21 points, 13 rebounds, and 5 blocks while playing a season high 42 minutes in a win over the Bulls. Seraphin’s two-week WARP average is 0.59, which places him at #33 overall during that span. If that’s not a must start in all leagues at this point, I don’t know what is.

With Dwight Howard and Glen Davis out with injuries and Daniel Orton (0.09) not doing much in his a start for the Magic, PF Earl Clark (1.31) got 33 minutes off the bench and finished with a season high 14 points and 11 rebounds, adding 2 blocks as well. Clark could have some deep league value if Davis were to miss the Magic’s next game on Wednesday, but if Davis returns my magic 8-ball says the outlook is not good.

Gary Neal (1.30) scored 17 points and hit 3 threes in 25 minutes off the bench for the Spurs as they beat down the Warriors 120-99. No Spurs starter saw more than 20 minutes in the game, giving Neal a little more run than usual. Even with the Spurs’ big three likely to take some games off as the season comes to an end, Neal won’t see enough consistent minutes to be worth owning in most fantasy leagues.

Too little, too late for MarShon Brooks (1.17)? After a horrible run in March, Brooks finally might be turning things around. He tied his career high with 24 points against the Heat, adding 7 rebounds and 6 assists in the game. It’s his sixth straight double-digit scoring game and five of those 6 games have had positive WARP performances. The Nets have a horrible schedule the rest of the way though, only playing 4 games over the next 10 days. So stay away from Brooks unless it’s a spot start or steaming situation.

Raymond Felton took the night off for the Blazers to rest an achilles injury. Jonny Flynn (-0.65) got the start at PG in his place and unimpressive, finishing with 6 assists and not much else. Nolan Smith (0.91) on the other hand, got 33 minutes off the bench (to Flynn’s 24) and had a game, scoring 14 points and adding 5 assists and 2 steals. If Felton were to miss any additional time (and there is talk of him shutting it down for the year ::coughtankingcough::) Smith appears to be the guy who would benefit the most from the situation and be the one to pickup.

Luke Babbitt (0.59) with 18 points, 4 threes and 5 rebounds in a start for the injured Nicolas Batum and Sundiata Gaines (0.48) with 11 points and 7 assists starting at PG for the injured Deron Williams could be worth looks as Batum and Williams could potentially be shut down for the year.

Biggest Loser: Not a good night to be Russell Westbrook (-1.00). The Thunder not only lost to the Clippers, but were held to 77 points total, including 25 in the second half. Westbrook was a big reason why as he finished with 9 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 5 turnovers and shot 4-16 from the field. It’s just a bump in the road for Westbrook, although it happens to be coming at a really bad time if you are playing for a championship this week.

Jordan Crawford (-1.03) shot 2-13 from the field (15%) to finish with 9 points, 2 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 turnovers. Hey, at least the assists are nice.

Darren Collison (-0.96) also made his return to the court last night after missing 4 games with a groin injury. Not that anyone would have noticed, as Collison finished with 0 points, 3 rebounds and 2 assists in 18 minutes off the bench. George Hill is expected to make at least one more start at PG for the Pacers while Collison (slowly) works his way back.

In the Bonus: Some childhood photos of NBA players (via fBasketballBlog on twitter). Andre Iguodala looks like a mini-me version of himself. It’s amazing.


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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