Ten Things Phil Knows About the NBA- February 11, 2018February 12, 2018 | insideinjuries | No Comments
*An Inside Injuries special from Phil Naessens at the new and improved Creative Sports. Check them out here!
The NBA is fantastic and there are so many things to talk about each and every week. Whether you are a Fantasy Basketball fanatic or just a fan here is ten things about the NBA that I want you to know about as we head into week 18 of the NBA season!
Weeks 18 and 19 are going to be a bit different; some Fantasy leagues combine the two weeks and some play two shortened weeks. For the purpose of this post I will only be discussing players and NBA events pertaining only to Week 18 of the NBA season running from Monday February 12 to February 15th.
Best NBA Games to Watch this Week
Monday February 12: San Antonio Spurs at the Utah Jazz. Two of the slowest paced teams in the NBA in an old school matchup. The game could also have playoff seeding implications.
Tuesday February 13: Cleveland Cavaliers at the Oklahoma City Thunder. The brand new Cavaliers look to avenge their worst loss of the season against a wildly unpredictable Thunder team.
Wednesday February 14: Golden State Warriors at the Portland Trail Blazers. Two of the NBA’s top backcourts square off in what should be a high scoring affair.
Thursday February 15: Denver Nuggets at the Milwaukee Bucks. Two young hungry teams battle against each other to close the first half of the season.
You are a Happy Fantasy Basketball Owner If
You have players on your roster from the Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Chicago Bulls, Denver Nuggets, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, New Orleans Pelicans, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs, Toronto Raptors and Utah Jazz as each team has two games on their schedule this week.
Waiver Wire Pickup of the Week
Miami Heat small forward Josh Richardson has been one of the hottest players in the NBA; over his last five games he’s averaging 19.2 points, 2.6 rebounds, 3.8 assists, one block and a steal and nearly three triples a night playing just over 35 minutes a game. Richardson is shooting 45 percent from the floor and 81 percent from the line this season. The Heat has two games this week (@Toronto and @Philadelphia) and is widely available across the fantasy basketball industry.
You are an Unhappy Fantasy Basketball Owner If
You have players on your roster from the Boston Celtics, Charlotte Hornets, Cleveland Cavaliers, Indiana Pacers, Indiana Pacers, Memphis Grizzlies, Portland Trail Blazers and Washington Wizards as they are the only teams with two games this week.
Tweet of the Week
New York Daily News and Sirius Radio NBA host Frank Isola is a witty guy and this tweet during the NBA Trade Deadline regarding the Cleveland Cavaliers trading point guard Isaiah Thomas demonstrate his wit and is deserving of this week’s Tweet of the Week!
Poor Isaiah Thomas was eliminated twice by LeBron in nine months.
— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) February 8, 2018
Dunk of the Week
I am a New York Knicks fan. We haven’t had much to cheer about in the last decade or so; at least not until Kristaps Porzingis arrived. On Tuesday night he tore his ACL on this dunk over Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo and with much sadness it is this week’s Dunk of the Week!
Replacing Kristaps Porzingis
This past week New York Knicks power forward Kristaps Porzingis tore his ACL and is out for the season. Porzingis was having the type of season that lived up to his 25 ADP ranking and it’s a pity we won’t be seeing him again on the basketball floor for at least ten more months.
You probably won’t find anyone on your league waiver wire that will even come close to his production but we can’t just give up and take a zero every week. Here are a few options you can consider for week 18 of the Fantasy Basketball season.
New York Knicks SF/PF Michael Beasley is probably the Knicks player who will benefit the most by the Porzingis injury. Over the past five games Beasley played 31 minutes in his first game post Porzingis scoring 21 points, seven rebounds and three steals with a block and assist. Beasley has shot 51 percent from the floor and 77 percent from the line this season. The Knicks have two games this week (@Philadelphia, Washington) and is widely available industry wide.
Washington Wizards power forward Markieff Morris has found his mojo recently and over the past five games is averaging 12.4 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3.2 assists and two steals on roughly 28 minutes a night. Morris is averaging one triple and night and shooting 47 percent from the floor and 84 percent from the line and with two games this week (@Knicks, @Cleveland) and is widely available across the industry.
Chicago Bulls power forward Bobby Portis is finally seeing an uptick in his minutes since the Nikola Mirotic trade and over the past five games Portis is averaging 11.8 points, 10.2 rebounds with a couple of assists and the occasional triple on 24 minutes a night. On the season Portis is shooting 46 percent from the field and 81 percent from the line and with two games this week (Orlando and Toronto) the widely available Portis might be just what you need in week 18.
Widely Available Streaming Options for Week 15
Monday February 12: New Orleans Pelicans shooting guard E’Twaun Moore is actually a small forward in the Pelicans offense and he has a terrific opportunity on Monday against a Detroit Pistons defense ranking in the bottom ten in defense against small forwards.
Tuesday February 13: San Antonio Spurs power forward Kyle Anderson is in reality the small forward and he’s in a nice spot on Tuesday against a Denver Nuggets defense who over their past five games have been bottom five in the league against small forwards.
Wednesday February 14: Atlanta Hawks small forward Taurean Prince has had an up and down sophomore season but he has a good opportunity on Wednesday against a Pistons defense in the bottom ten in defense against small forwards. Yes, I am picking on the Pistons this week.
Thursday February 15: Los Angeles Lakers shooting guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope has a good opportunity on Thursday night against a Minnesota Timberwolves defense in the bottom five in the league against shooting guards.
Heading into the Home Stretch in Your Fantasy Basketball League
There is just a few more weeks until the Fantasy Basketball playoffs begin. Are you ready? You MUST do all that you can to make the league playoffs and here’s a little checklist to help you get it done!
- Re-read your league rules and double check your league trade deadline.
- If you are in a league with position limits pay careful attention to how many games you have left.
- If you are not safely in the playoffs and you have a player like Kevin Love on your roster and don’t have an injured reserve spot than you need to drop that player.
- No matter where you are in the league standings please continue to update your rosters every Monday in weekly leagues and every day in daily leagues. There is nothing worse than a General Manager that quits before the regular season ends.
That’s all I can think of right now but if there is something I have left out please use the comments section and help us out!!
Fantasy Basketball Busts for 2018
Over the past two weeks I shared with you my top ten Fantasy Basketball All Star team. I based these picks solely on where the player is currently sitting on the ESPN Player Rater and where they were drafted according to their Average Draft Position (ADP).
Last week I named five of the biggest busts and this week I will be fair and name five more Fantasy Basketball busts for the 2018 season. It will be the same drill as with the All Stars; we will look at their ADP and see how far below that ranking the bust in question failed to reach expectations…..and here we go.
Did you draft Indiana Pacers PF/C Myles Turner with pick 27 or less? If you did I am sure you aren’t happy with his current rating of 81. It’s not really Turners fault he’s been injured but Turner has underperformed when healthy. Like most of our busts Turner is having a career year in just about every scoring category other than the shooting categories. Part of the blame is the breakout season Victor Oladipo has had but Turner played with Paul George so he’s used to playing alongside high volume scorers. Either way Turner has underperformed.
Maybe you drafted Miami Heat center Hassan Whiteside with pick 16 or less you already know I have bad news for you. Whiteside currently sits at 79 on the player rater and much like Turner injuries have cost Whiteside and his GM’s 19 games this season. Whiteside’s blocks and rebounds are down and he’s averaging about seven minutes less a game than he did in 2017. The downtick in minutes can be attributed to several fourth quarter benching’s. There is hope for Whiteside owners; his Usage Rate is the highest of his career. Hopefully he works a bit harder on his defense and plays a few more fourth quarters.
Detroit Pistons power forward Blake Griffin began the season with the Los Angeles Clippers and prior to being traded to the Pistons Griffin missed 16 games with injuries. Griffin was taken with pick 32 and is currently at 82 on the player rater. Griffin is currently well below his career average in rebounds and is currently averaging two more turnovers per game than his career average. He probably won’t raise his rebound totals playing alongside Andre Drummond but the turnovers should go down now that he isn’t the one man show he was in Los Angeles but if the season ended today he would be a bust for 2018.
Did you draft Charlotte Hornets SG/SF Nicolas Batum with pick 92 or less? Considering he’s currently sitting at 138 on the player rater you grabbed him a bit too early. Batum rarely misses games and this season he has already missed 11 games due to various ailments. His Usage Rate has dropped three percentage points from 2017 which explains the downtrend in production. Batum has started to heat up and if his hot play continues we won’t see him on our end of the season bust list.
If you drafted Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert with pick 13 or less his current 149 player rater rating must be annoying you to death. It hasn’t helped Gobert has missed 28 games due to injury but it is what it is. The blocks are still there but everything else has taken a hit except he has the highest Usage Rate of his brief five year career. Gobert has had six double digit rebound games since he has returned from his injury and if that keeps up much like Batum Gobert won’t be on the end of the season bust list.
Enjoy the NBA this week!!
Follow Phil @Flashtennis31 and The Phil Naessens Show.