Last week, while he was in the midst of one of the most scintillating fantasy hoops runs of the season, I suggested on Twitter that it was time to sell high on Corey Maggette. Yes, it would hurt. Yes, he was carrying you. Yes, I would like to write an entire post starting each sentence with ‘Yes’.
But there are too many “No”s with this guy. No, he is never healthy. No, he doesn’t play for a sane coach. No, he’s never been consistent.
So you have the Maggette who was averaging close to 30 points per game in January with a field goal percentage around 57 percent and a free throw percentage around 91. Then you have the Maggette of the last two games: combined 8-35 from the field, 16.5 points, a shouting match with Don Nelson, and an inevitable random “hamstring” injury in the next few days. The happy times are over. All that’s left is a reality show on A&E.
Other thoughts on Wednesday’s action while I ponder why I haven’t taken my own advice and shopped Maggette in the Damn Lies league…
Break up the Nets: New Jersey is 4-40 after a win over the Clippers Wednesday, a game with oodles of fantasy intrigue. Devin Harris sat out with a wrist injury, and he’s been so bad that his fantasy owners were probably thrilled. Keyon Dooling started and outplayed Baron Davis pretty badly, finishing with 18 points, eight assists, two threes and two steals. A pair of Net forwards put up very cool numbers off the bench and should be eyed in all leagues as well. Kris Humphries has already been on our radar for a while, but his 25 and eight last night on 10-14 shooting solidifies him as a strong pickup in all but the shallowest of leagues. Terrence Williams saw 31 minutes of action and went for seven points, nine rebounds and eight assists. With the two of them helping out in a victory, they could make a major impact going forward. Unless the Nets don’t want to win. Then they might be benched. I have no idea.
Give My Love to Rose: The Bulls have now won four in a row after last night’s 96-86 victory in Oklahoma City and have done so against Phoenix, Houston, San Antonio and the Thunder. Vinny Del Negro is clearly the best coach in the game right now. Or maybe Derrick Rose is finally healthy and simply balling. He scored 26 last night and is averaging 25.6 in his last five while shooting over 55 percent from the field. His lack of threes and steals deflates his value, but patient owners have to finally be ecstatic about his recent output.
Carmelo, Roy Remain Out: Carmelo Anthony missed Denver’s 97-92 win at Houston, his second straight game in street clothes, while Brandon Roy has now missed four games with a hamstrings injury and will likely be out through the weekend. Portland fell at home to Utah.
Paul a Beast Lately: Something’s been off for Chris Paul most of this year as he hasn’t been close to the dominant fantasy guy he was in 2008-09. Injuries have played a part in that, but it also looks like any struggles are behind him. He’s averaging a cool 26.4-5.2-10.6 in his last five and is getting back to stealing the ball at a rate we’re accustomed to. Last night against the hapless Warriors, Paul was 38-6-9 with three steals, 14-19 from the field and 9-9 from the line. Hope you haven’t traded him for anyone less than LeBron or Durant.
A Star is Bo: Twitter is all aflutter this morning with news of Zach Randolph making the All-Star team. The reserves will be announced tonight, but we have to say: he deserves it. If only because his monster year is so surprising. I’d love to see Marc Gasol get in as well. Both guys tore up Detroit last night and are playing at a really high level. I put Randolph in a similar category as Maggette: sell high while his value is through the roof. He’s not a shot blocker, offers very little in assists and threes, and simply can’t be better than he’s been.
Some Tim Duncan Appreciation: The 1998 All-Star Game was on the other day, and Tim Duncan was out there, looking and playing exactly the same as he does now (as opposed to Kevin Garnett, who was, jarringly, a jackrabbit out there). I mention this because it was 12 years ago, and last night Duncan gave us a throwback line of 21-27-6, and actually hit all 11 of his free throws. The Spurs beat the upstart Hawks by 15 to boot despite Tim shooting 5-20 from the field. Reports of his demise remain exaggerated, and fantasy owners are again being treated to his customary 20 and 11 with two blocks. Bravo, Tim.
Tonight: Two excellent TNT affairs on the docket with Celtics at Magic and Mavericks at Suns. The Raptors also visit the Knicks with fantasy riches sure to ensue. And in case you hadn’t heard, Gilbert Arenas has been downgraded to doubtful for the rest of the season by David Stern.