We did a little switcharoo and Ryan Knaus took yesterday’s article so I could cover the Kings opener and vice-versa, and with plenty to talk about we’re going to jump right in today.
Also, I have yet to setup my FanDuel system this year but here’s the link to a one-day $25K league. I can’t wait to get in there and that should hopefully happen by the weekend.
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WHAT’S UP DOC?
Andrew Bargnani is such a Knicks pickup. If I were a fan of the team I’d have much rather had a young, athletic kid that was raw but gave a snot (family site) about mixing it up down low. I’d have to do a deep dig that I’m not willing to do right now to find out if the Knicks and Nuggets are compatible trade partners, but if I’m saying that right now is my last year to win with Carmelo Anthony then I find a way to acquire Kenneth Faried, who would enjoy a nice and healthy fantasy existence there.
Anyway, Bargs played 25 minutes in his start at power forward last night and had nine points, one assist, three turnovers and one friggin (family site) rebound. If you’re wondering any swearing I could do on my end would simply be to offer condolences to Knicks fans for their upcoming rectal exam of a season (not so family there).
Raymond Felton didn’t seem bothered by his hammy injury and lasted 37 minutes with 13 points, four rebounds, six assists, one block and one three and dare I say he looked quick. We’ll see how many minutes he gets when the lights aren’t so bright and the team appears headed for the bottom half of the playoff bracket.
Tim Hardaway Jr. (10 points, two threes, three boards, 4-of-13 FGs) is going to exceed expectations and he played 27 minutes last night, but he needs further assistance from his teammates in terms of missed games before he holds any sustainable value. Tyson Chandler had a solid 19 rebounds to go with one steal, four blocks and seven points in 38 minutes. He’s going to be shooting from a bit further out, and after a 3-of-8 shooting night I’m not sure I like the direction that’s heading.
Of course, Carmelo Anthony appears destined to be the guy that just can’t win, and I’m not talking about the standings or the playoffs. He’s getting criticized for talking about his free agency, and wouldn’t you know it he missed the game-winning attempt on a passive, yet open 19-foot shot. Look for him to be a force, as he was with 22 points on 8-of-24 shooting, six boards, six assists, two blocks and two threes, but much like that shooting line dampens a great night his inability to endear himself to folks will characterize an otherwise solid season.
I had to double back and write about Amare having totally forgotten about him, as he played just 11 minutes with five points, one rebound, one steal and three turnovers. If Bargs is bad then Amare is terrible.
THE ONLY SHOT YOU DON’T MAKE IS THE ONE YOU DON’T TAKE…OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT
Derrick Rose didn’t back down from an awful 7-of-23 shooting line last night as he hit the game-winning floater with five seconds left. In actuality he’s trying to do too much right now in many different aspects of the game, from overdribbling and overpenetrating to his shot selection. Look for him to get that out of his system after his high profile absence and get back on track in the shooting department.
I hope somebody out there sold high on Boozer after his big opener – a hard thing to do with everybody wise to his act – and he promptly returned to his baseline with 14 points, seven rebounds, three assists and one steal in 33 minutes. Joakim Noah looked a lot better with 15 rebounds in 36 minutes to go with six points, five assists, one steal and one block on just 2-of-7 shooting. Jimmy Butler continued to impress with 11 points, 10 boards, two steals and one block with 4-of-11 shooting from the field. Look for Tom Thibodeau to ride him all year long. Luol Deng rebounded from his stanky opener to put up 17 points, three rebounds, six assists and one trey in 40 minutes. He and Noah are great to own but they will shave years off owners’ lives this season.
GETTING IT WHILE THE GOING IS GOOD
The Clippers and Warriors are two of the more openly arrogant teams in the NBA. Blake Griffin and Chris Paul alone irritate the entire league to no end, while Mark Jackson’s proclamations and the Warriors’ demeanor during blowout wins borders on Clipper-like. It should be no surprise then that these two teams hate each other, even refusing to pray together before the game as is customary for players that do that.
It was the Clippers that had the last laugh last night, but it didn’t really hurt the Warriors’ fantasy guys as David Lee had 22 points, five boards, two assists and one steal, Stephen Curry went big with 38 points on 14-of-23 shooting with three rebounds, nine assists and a mind-boggling 11 turnovers, Andrew Bogut put up 17 points with six boards on 6-of-7 shooting in 28 minutes, Andre Iguodala had 14 points, four rebounds, 11 assists, two steals and one three, and Klay Thompson cooled off with 10 points, one rebound, one assist, two steals and one there in 38 minutes.
Right down the list I’m concerned about the impact of Harrison Barnes on both Thompson and Lee, in particular with Lee profiling like a guy that will slowly move away from the hoop as he hits the second half of his career. No double-digit rebounds for Lee in his first two games certainly isn’t a great start, while Klay reminded folks why you don’t get excited over one game in his stinker. Bogut’s health chases any real excitement but he’s going to be a player while on the court, and Iguodala will also see his numbers go down a tad when Barnes returns but his role is mostly constant with this squad. As for Barnes, he has been ruled out for at least one more game and in general his momentum has been stalled greatly by this absence. He’ll eventually get whatever he earns regardless, but he’s simply one step behind in the race for minutes and touches.
SOMETHING SMELLS FOUL
DeAndre Jordan has been a hot fantasy name for the past few days but he really showed why owners need to keep things in perspective with him as he hit just 3-of-12 freebies last night. He finished with nine points on 3-of-9 shooting from the field to go with an otherwise solid 17 boards, two steals and one block in 41 minutes. As suggested by his 79/63 ranking in the Bruski 150 (8/9 cat) the minutes are going to be there, but the foul shooting will limit him from having anything close to a breakout outside of punting formats.
The Clips’ wing rotation is going to be an interesting early watch as Jared Dudley appeared to be the odd man out, but with 33 minutes, 10 points, 4-of-6 shooting, two threes and two steals he bumped Matt Barnes (four points, three rebounds, 18 minutes) out of the way last night. We’ll have to watch if this has anything to do with his calf issue or why Dudley got the minutes, and as you can see Dudley has to work very hard to get his numbers this season.
J.J. Redick (17 points, five rebounds, three treys, 28 minutes) and Jamal Crawford (17 points, two threes, 23 minutes) have been unaffected by the logjam thus far. It’s early but it feels like this will continue for the rest of the year. A lot of folks dinging me for Chris Paul at No. 4 over Curry at No. 5 got a smorgasbord of that debate last night, as Paul turned in the biggest line of the young season with 42 points, 12-of-20 FGs, 2-of-6 3PMs, 16-of-17 FTs, count them 15 assists, six steals and an obligatory six turnovers with all that usage. He dunked too, methinks accidentally.