Points in the Paint

Fantasy Basketball Opinions, Strategy & Tips

Posts Tagged ‘Luke Ridnour’

It had to happen sooner or later…

Posted by Erik on December 14, 2008

“Coach Maurice Cheeks Fired by Sixers!”

Image c/o nytimes.com

Image c/o nytimes.com

I wasn’t really surprised when this bit of news broke out. I was expecting it to happen, as I said in the title, sooner or later. Simply add him to the list of coaches who’ve gotten the axe due to their team’s poor performances.Hmm… Maybe the Bucks should FIRE Scott Skiles for insisting to start Luke Ridnour instead of the clearly more effective and productive Ramon Sessions (at least when he gets decent minutes).

On paper the Philadelphia 76ers are supposed to be a very competitive team. That’s been the problem. The “paper” hasn’t been translating itself into reality. 9 wins and 14 losses is not exactly how I would define looking good.

Fantasy values of all the Sixers have been unreliable, extremely erratic, and overall underwhelming to say the least.

With a new coach (Tony DiLeo) at the helm, I can’t see the Sixer players’ fantasy values to go anywhere but up. But then again, I’ve been wrong about things like this on many an occasion, so I’ll just say that we should wait and see what happens while crossing our fingers for the best. Expect things to be shaken up around in terms of player rotation and playing time over there at Philly. Keep an eye on your Philly players.

Is time to see some vintage Elton Brand? The Sixers sure hope so.

Is time to see some vintage Elton Brand? The Sixers sure hope so.

They just won a game under their new head coach over the Washington Wizards. I know it isn’t really saying much, but hey, at least it’s a start. Case in point, are the performances of Elton Brand and Samuel Dalembert. Elton had a decent line of 27-9-3-1-1. Now that’s a lot closer to the vintage Elton we drafted him for. He shot poorly from the line though (3 of 8), well you can’t expect new coach DiLeo to repair things overnight. Sam-Dam grabbed 17 boards, blocked a shot and not much else. Well this has been one his more productive outings over the past couple of weeks so it’s still a good sign.

Sheesh! This is another stiff reminder to me that patience is indeed a virtue. This change comes at a time very shortly after I’ve unloaded (traded away) my Elton Brands in two of my Yahoo! leagues. Sigh… que se ra se ra!

Elsewhere in the Fantasy Basketball Universe (which runs parallel to the NBA Universe)…

Dwight Howard (Sore Left Knee), center of the Orlando Magic missed a basketball game !

Yes folks it eventually had to happen sooner or later…

Give him a break! It's a sore knee. He'll be back in no time!

Give him a break! It's a sore knee. He'll be back in no time!

D-Ho’s been known for his reliable 82 game seasons prior to this one. But hell, give the guy a frickin’ break. So what if he misses a game or two? He’s taken his overall fantasy game to a whole nother level. In deep leagues, there are weeks where Superman can simply win you the big man cats by himself! That says a lot. It’s not as if Chris Paul can win you all the small ball numbers by himself, right? Fine maybe he can, save for the three pointers made category.

Hopefully, Dwight won’t be gone too long. I expect him to be back in opponent-pwning action in a game or so.

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Posted in Fantasy Basketball, Injuries, Upside | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dirkie-poo Takes Me to #1

Posted by Erik on December 2, 2008

Dirkie-poo?” Yeah, we’re close like that. Well in a fantasy basketball kind of way…

I’ve been a big fan of 7-footers who can shoot treys like guards. Yes, Andrea Bargnani’s growing on me with every Raptor game that rolls on by.

Back to Dirk.

I love how he’s such a quietly underrated multi-cat kind of guy. Fine, he isn’t as donkalicious like say Dwyane Wade or LeBron James or Chris Paul, but man can he fill up those cats nicely! He blows away opponents on the FT% cat among others and he’s a fantastic big man core player for small ball – one of the few. I have him at number five on my recently updated Top 72 players for Head to Head Page.

I recently reached the top spot over at the 20-man Give Me The Monster League of Give  Me The Rock, with a sweet record of 27-16-2. I’m only a game ahead of like 4 other teams so this moment might be short lived. So I plan to savor it as long as I can milk it. 🙂

It’s nice to beam with pride about this league as I am skimming the scum, close to the bottom in the GMTR Reader’s League. Scraping victories only against injury-ridden teams. – but that rant is for another post.

I owe my success to my first round pick, Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks, PF).

I don’t know exactly happened to the post I had on queue that highlighted my pride on a team-well-drafted for the Monster League. Oh well, now seems like a more auspicious time anyway.

I was 5th to pick and chose him over the likes of Dwyane Wade (yeah, I didn’t see this season coming either) and Elton Brand, KG, Matrix – thank goodness! Anyway, in a nutshell, here’s how my draft went.

  1. Dirk Nowitzki  PF (5th)
  2. Paul Pierce SG/SF (36th)
  3. Hedo Turkoglu SG/SF (45th)
  4. T.J. Ford PG (76th)
  5. Al Harrington PF/C (85th)
  6. Ricky Davis SG/SF (116th)
  7. Luke Ridnour PG (126th)
  8. Daniel Gibson SG (156th)
  9. Linas Kleiza SG/SF (165th)
  10. Chris Quinn PG/SG (196th)

Of course, I wouldn’t be hitting the top of the heap on that draft alone. Over the course of the first month I made a few moves here and there. The most recent was to burn my waiver position to pick up Raja Bell who was thrown to the wires by another team. Raja is gold among trash in the pool, especially in a 20-man league. Believe you me! I’m now extra glad I didn’t throw away Al Harrington to the wires during the heat of his retarded tantrum over at GSW.

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Posted in Draft Analysis, Fantasy Basketball, Rave, Strategy, Upside | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Redemption Trifecta and Steep Learning Curves, Part 1

Posted by Erik on October 29, 2008

My mettle as a Fantasy Basketball fanatic was recently tested as I engaged in an attempt to draft for 3 leagues whose live drafts started within the span of three hours. I was desperately trying to regain focus and emotional stability after my tumultuous GMTR Readers’ League draft.

We learn wisdom from failure much more than success. We often discover what we will do, by finding out what we will not do.

– Samuel Smiles

Dinner and a Draft

The first draft was for my original Fantasy Roto League with my buddies. My friend, Frogs, invited me over for a Draft Party that evening. We had pasta, chilli, and barbecued pork.

The league is a 13-man, 9-cat, rotisserie format, with 14 roster spots to fill (PG, SG, G, SF, PF, F, C x 2, Util x 2 and Bench x 2)

Dinner started later than usual, but as soon as it did the dinner table was filled with lively and interesting conversation. As we were planning to break out the dessert, I received a text message from one of my buddies over at the league complaining about his internet connection and how he was having some problems. I replied with a short but sympathetic message. I then saw the clock on my cellular phone and it was 9:05! This is how the chaos began… (profanity has been dialed down in this version)

Me: Dude! Crap! It’s 9:05! The draft started already!

Frogs: Shit! Shit! Shit! – Runs to his PC

(I scamper to set-up my laptop)

Me: Oh my God! We probably missed the first round!

Frogs: No! Maybe even two rounds!

Me: Nooooo! <thought bubble: Thank God I pre-ranked!>

(I’m first to log-in and launch into the Live Draft applet)

Me: Dude! We missed two rounds. I am 6th and you’re 13th. I got Brand and Josh Smith. You got Granger and Bosh.

Frogs: I got who? I’m last? Oh hell no! Crap! If I knew I was last, I would have bounced Bosh and Al-Jeff! Ugh!

Me: Don’t worry man. There’s nothing that can go wrong in the first 2 rounds that we can’t compensate for in the next few rounds. It’s roto!

Frogs: Argh!

Side note: For whatever personal reasons he may have, Frogs NEVER pre-ranks. I always do. Perhaps after this harrowing experience, he may change his mind about pre-ranking.

Ok it wasn’t the best of starts for any Live draft, but I didn’t mind my core. Here’s how my team eventually panned out:

1. (6th pick) Elton Brand PF/C – AUTOPICKED. Not a problem here as far as I’m concerned. I don’t mind drafting a team (roto especially) around a solid big man and that’s exactly how I view Elton to be this year in Philly.

2. (21st pick) Josh Smith SF/PF – AUTOPICKED. I’m actually kind of surprised Josh reached me. I normally see him get reached for earlier in this league. I normally would have preferred to have paired my drafted top tier center with a top tier PG, but Josh was a welcome autodraft consolation. He solidifies my blocks cat while providing me with a lot of other strong contributions in various other cats.

3. (32nd pick) Rudy Gay SF/PF – Since the drop off of PGs passed me and I didn’t really feel like gambling on Jason Kidd. David West was still on the board but I felt that I had to start transitioning into some small guy numbers and Rudy was the best transition pick on the block. I really like his upside this year and I can’t wait to see what kind of season he will bring. I simply couldn’t pass up on his talent at this spot.

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Mo help for LBJ!

Posted by Erik on August 14, 2008

6-player, 3-team deal, blah… blah… blah… I just realized that by the time most people come around to reading my BLOG, they already know the latest in NBA news. I think I’m getting a better understanding of my readership and following. On that note, I’m not going to waste anymore of anyone’s precious time by rewriting the NBA/Fantasy NBA news that’s out there. Read about the deal HERE.

With that out of the way, let’s get down to my thoughts on the matter. Bottomline, the fantasy impact of the deal is all about the PGs involved and/or affected by the deal. The forwards involved are incidental and have little to no fantasy impact – unless of course you plan to play in a really deep, sick, 20-man slugfest of a league; and even then I highly doubt that the likes of Joe Smith, Desmond Mason, and God forbid Adrian Griffin will strike your fantasy fancy.

Down LOW for the Mo

Down LOW for the Mo

First on the block is of course the highest rated guard, Mo Williams. I like his acquisition for the CAVS and subsequently, of course, for LeBron James. Cleveland (LeBron) was – frankly still IS – in dire need of another scoring option and and Mo Williams was probably the best choice available to them in this year’s very lean PG market. Mo displayed a very solid season last year, his 14 DNPs being his only real bane on the fantasy cats. He’s decent a defender (1.2 SPG), he can distribute the ball (6.4 APG), and he can also contribute on offense (17.2 PPG, 1.4 Treys/G). So he will be a great partner for LBJ, right? I’d actually hold off on any fantasy accolades for the guy, at least until mid February. The thing is, from a fantasy stand point, LBJ doesn’t mix well with guards. He normally has the ball in his hands, drives to the hoop and either finishes the play or does a drop down pass to one the Cavs’ “big men”. That’s how his style of play has been working and he does that more often than kick out the ball to the guards at the top of the key or on the wings. OK, I don’t doubt Mo will be able to contribute offensively, since he does have the capability to create his own shot; but we will have to wait and see if Cleveland can really use him as a TRUE PG and not just as some schmuck (no offense Delonte) who’s supposed to bring down the ball – hand it to LeBron – and let HIM decide what comes next. Mo’s play making skills will really be put to the test this year as he will be teamed up with a truly elite forward who DOES like to pass the ball himself as well. Overall, I’m on Mo’s fantasy downside – with an expectation of his numbers dropping; but I would be more than happy for him to prove me wrong this year. Speaking of Delonte, I suppose he will have to give up starting PG role to Mo, but I like him as a starter and I am hoping he’ll see some solid playing time at the starting SG slot this year.

Luke Ridnour and Earl Watson – These guys were competing for playing the time last couple of years like 40 year old virgins at a party at the PLAYBOY mansion. Unfortunately, Luke got nailed by injuries and Earl took most of last year’s starts. But the past is past, Luke’s moved on to the Bucks; and now these boys no longer have to look over each other’s shoulders to see if they’re going to lose their starting PG slot to the other guy. Bottomline this is decent fantasy upside for these guys, who by the way are quite reasonable tertiary fantasy PG options. Enjoy your starts guys! Hopefully you’ll produce some usable PG stats this year. 13 PPG and 5-6 APG with a little less than horrendous FG%,  a steal and a trey every now and then, too much to ask for? I sure hope not.

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