Matt Stroup

Roundball Stew

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Stew: Tank Half Full

Friday, March 3, 2017


For all his prowess as a funneler of dirt cheap beer (and one random, brilliant turn in a debate competition*), there is a staggering array of things that Frank Ricard (aka Frank the Tank) — Will Ferrell’s character from Old School — does not do well.

Off the top of my head, and in no particular order…

He interrupts a Snoop concert … streaks through the quad alone (and gets caught by his wife)…  leaves a horribly bumbling series of voicemails … breaks a glass with a hockey stick … shoots himself in the neck with a tranquilizer gun, nearly drowns … re-gifts a bread maker from his failed wedding (twice?) … gives a horribly stressful locker room speech … and I would argue that Blue's death was at least partially his fault.

Frank Kaminsky’s rookie season didn’t go bread-maker badly, but the No. 9 overall pick in 2015 was pretty bland overall last year. He only had two 20-point games, hit double figures in points just 23 times in 81 games, and for the season posted the following unspectacular stats: 7.5 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.2 apg, 0.5 spg, 0.5 bpg and 0.8 3s (41.0 FG / 73.0 FT) in 21 minutes per game.

This year started out more auspiciously, with Frank the Tank hitting double-digit points in 11 of his first 15 games (12.1 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 2.9 apg, 1.4 3s during that stretch). But he cooled off considerably from there, and by the end of January, he was averaging a modest 9.9 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.0 apg and 1.2 3s on 38.6 percent from the field.

It was around that same time that Cody Zeller dinged his quad, and Kaminsky took off. Beginning with a career-high 24 points on Feb. 1st, he went on a 12-game run including 17.9 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 2.6 apg, 1.2 spg, 0.7 bpg and 2.4 3s, very much looking like a key component of many a fantasy title run.

Until Thursday night, when The Tank — still in the process of heating up (20.5 ppg, 3.0 treys in his last six games) — hurt his shoulder against the Suns. The bad news is there’s no obvious fallback plan unless you already have Cody Zeller on your roster, and aside from hoping that Kaminsky will be back soon, the main thing I can offer is a long-term takeaway: As you look ahead to next season and begin to rank players, let Kaminsky be a reminder not to take this year’s stats as the full story for any given player. After all, depending on how long he’s out, Kaminsky’s numbers will likely end up somewhere around 12 points and five boards per game. But as we’ve seen recently, the upside for Frank the Tank is considerably higher than that. And while there’s not much positive to say about this injury right now, if nothing else, maybe it will help keep Kaminsky’s fantasy value right where you want it heading into 2017-18.

In the meantime, if you just lost Kaminsky, please know that I mean it with all sincerity when I say: Keep truckin’.

(You can follow me on Twitter right here)

Other Random Thoughts: In some positive news from the Charlotte front line, Marvin Williams has posted 14.4 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 0.6 spg, 1.4 bpg and 2.2 3s in his last five games. … Steph Curry and Seth Curry are both averaging 23.5 ppg in their last four games. Seth during that stretch: 23.5 ppg, 3.8 apg, 1.5 spg, 4.0 treys. Steph, meanwhile, is 4-of-31 on 3s in his last three games. … Marquese Chriss had an eight-point dud a few games ago, but has still posted 13.6 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 1.0 spg, 1.0 bpg and 1.2 3s in his last five. He’ll have some pretty monstrous fantasy potential heading into next season. … D’Angelo Russell’s last four games: 22.8 ppg, 5.5 apg, 1.8 spg, 3.0 treys. … Andrew Wiggins is averaging 2.3 spg and 1.6 3s (oh, and 29.9 ppg) in his last 10 games.

*Old School aficionados will note that Frank the Tank did successfully recover the audio tape from Jeremy Piven’s character at the end, and he performed admirably in the rhythmic gymnastics portion of the competition. And come to think of it, his singing at Blue’s funeral was also pretty moving, even if not technically good.



Matt Stroup covers basketball, baseball and football for Rotoworld.com. You can find him on Twitter here .
Email :Matt Stroup



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