Courtesy of RotoExperts.com (posted Monday, Nov. 15)
Now is the time to start buying stock in Pepto-Bismol. We’ve officially hit the Fantasy Hoops stride and the injuries are starting to come at a fast and furious pace. But have no fear, with injuries come opportunities. Brad Miller, anyone? How about Jeff Adrien? Yeah, I know, it seems like I’m grasping at straws here, but it’s too early to simply sulk because one of your top contributors has an infected elbow. This week I’m going to take a look at a few key injuries and give you a few tips on how to make the most of the bruised, battered and beat down in the Association.
Yao Ming (C, HOU)
Yao is going to miss the next week with a sprained ankle. He’s had problems with his feet/ankles for most of his career, so naturally this is terrible news for the big fella and his owners. Brad Miller has filled in for Yao, showing signs of value this past Friday with 23 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three 3-pointers in 34 minutes. He then managed just eight points and three rebounds against the Knicks on Sunday. He has little boom and quite a bit of bust in him, so be careful adding him in standard formats. Deeper leagues should certainly turn to Miller while Yao recuperates from his ankle sprain.
David Lee (PF/C, GSW)
Lee had minor surgery this weekend to clean out some infection in his elbow. Anytime a player has surgery, no matter how minor it may be, it’s worth pausing and reassessing the situation. Some reports have Lee returning this Friday, which would be amazing, while others have him scheduled to return next week. Until then you can take a flier on rookie Jeff Adrien, who saw 19 minutes of action on Saturday. Adrien posted six points, eight rebounds and two blocks against the Bucks. He’s a clean-up big who can provide a little boost in boards and blocks. Nothing spectacular, though.
John Wall (PG, WAS)
It seems as if Wall has already hit the “rookie wall” just eight games into the season. Wall is averaging nearly 40 minutes per game, which is a ridiculous amount of playing time for any rookie, especially an active point guard like Wall. He didn’t practice on Monday and is questionable for Tuesday and Wednesday night’s games. Kirk Hinrich is definitely worth a look in all formats. He’ll likely start alongside Gilbert Arenas and provide nice assist, point, steal and 3-point value.
Brandon Roy (SG/SF, POR)
Roy has been hobbled by his left knee for most of the season and admits that it’s likely going to be a burden all year. He may actually miss Tuesday night’s game, and has already shown signs of slowing down with a two-point performance in 22 minutes this past Saturday. Rudy Fernandez and Wesley Matthews are going to benefit from Roy’s ailing knee. Both have nice value, but could eat into each other’s production with a possible timeshare situation. Looking into my crystal ball I think that Matthews is going to get the early minutes here, but I would not count out Fernandez. Keep an eye on both.
Andray Blatche (PF/C, WAS)
Blatche is listed as day-to-day with a sore knee. He may not play on Tuesday night, giving Hilton Armstrong a chance to provide big-man stats for you deep leaguers out there. Armstrong posted eight points and 10 rebounds in 18 minutes on Saturday against the Bulls. He’s a sneaky start in bigger leagues, but not someone I would look at in a 10-team league.
Lamar Odom (F, LAL)
Odom went for an MRI on Monday to check out the pain in his right foot. It doesn’t seem so serious, but if for some reason he were to miss any time, I would suggest taking a look at Matt Barnes off the bench. The Lakers may have to slide Ron Artest over to power forward and have Barnes join the starting five. If Odom’s MRI comes out clean we can pretend we never had this conversation.
Jeff Green (F, OKC)
Green did not play on Monday night due to an ankle sprain. Serge Ibaka got the start in his absence — and was fantastic! — while Nick Collison saw a small increase in minutes. Ibaka should not be available in any leagues, while Collison should not be rostered in many.
Caron Butler (SG/SF, DAL)
Butler (back) is targeting a Wednesday return to the lineup. Until then I guess we’ll see the player formally known as Shawn Marion in the starting lineup. What a sad turn of events it’s been for Marion. He’s not worth owning.
Robin Lopez (C, PHO)
Lopez will get an MRI this week on his knee to determine if there is damage to his MCL. It looks like at the very least he’ll miss a week or two, possibly more. If you are in a daily league you can go ahead and drop Lopez, but continue to monitor his recovery because he still has some value when healthy. Channing Frye will see an increase in minutes in the middle.
Anderson Varejao (PF/C, CLE)
Varejao has been sidelined with a bruised rib. He did practice on Monday, but there is no word as to whether or not he’ll play on Tuesday. Ryan Hollins would get an increase in production if he were any good. But, unfortunately, he’s not.
Mo Williams (PG/SG, CLE)
Williams has been out with a groin injury. He is also questionable for Tuesday night’s game. Ramon Sessions and Daniel Gibson have done a fine job filling in for Williams. You won’t be able to replace his production with either, but you can definitely get something out of both.
Baron Davis (PG, LAC)
Yes, it seems like we won’t be seeing Davis back on the court for a few weeks. Eric Bledsoe remains a must-add. As a starter Bledsoe is averaging 12.4 points on 50.7 percent shooting, 7.0 assists, 4.3 rebounds, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks. He should be owned in all formats.
Terrence Williams (SG/SF, NJN)
Williams did not play on Monday night against the Clippers, but is expected back on Wednesday. I would hold off on starting him Wednesday since you have a pretty full slate of games and enough players to choose from. I would also pick up Williams if he’s available in your league. Once healed from his groin injury he should start to provide nice Fantasy value.
Darren Collison (PG, IND)
Collison injured his ankle on Monday in practice and is questionable for Tuesday night’s game. It’s worth following the updates, and if Collison were to miss any time you should look to scoop up T.J. Ford as a filler only. Ford has no long-term value while Collison is healthy, though.
Luke Ridnour / Jonny Flynn (PG, MIN)
Both point guards are expected to return to the lineup on Wednesday. This means that the Sebastian Telfair happy-time-fun-hour will likely come to an end. Flynn and Ridnour will probably split time early on, but I expect the job to eventually return to Flynn. Pick him up if he’s available in your league. He could have nice long-term value.
You can contact Tom at Lorenzo@RotoExperts.com. Send him your Fantasy questions and he’ll make sure to get back to you in no time.