2011-12 Damn Mock I: Seventh Round

I suppose we went on a bit of a point guard run in this round. Nearly half the picks were point guards, not including the combo guards who were also selected. The two picks which interested me the most in this round were the James Harden and Marcus Thornton ones. I went ahead and picked Harden, who still might end up coming off the bench for the Thunder, as talented as he is, while Greg went for Thornton. What interests me about Thornton is that he has tons of talent, but there’s still a bit of a logjam at the guard position in Sacramento. You have Tryeke Evans and Beno Udrih slotted to start, right? Not that room won’t be made for Thornton, but I would feel more comfortable if he had more playing time lined up. Should be interesting, though.

The rules: Jeff, Tom and Greg are taking four teams each in this 12-team league, which is a nine-category rotisserie league (FG%, FT%, PTS, REB, AST, STL, BLK, 3FG, TO) that will draft the following: 1 PG, 1 SG, 1 SF, 1 PF, 2 C, 1 F, 1 G, 2 U. We’ll be building each team ourselves based on this format. Hope you enjoy, and feel free to mock us in the Comments.



73. Team 1 (Greg) – Ray Allen – Like fine Manischewitz, Ray Allen just keeps getting better with age. Well, not really, but he is still damn effective, particularly from a fantasy perspective. In his age 35 season, Mr. Shuttlesworth managed to shoot a career best 49 percent from the field, knocked down 2.1 threes per game, and turned it over only 1.5 times. His free throw shooting did fall off to only 88 percent, his poorest percentage in a decade, but it was still good enough to rank among league leaders. The ageless wonder remains fantasy gold and is a nice get for Team 1, which is in need of 3-point shooting.

74. Team 2 (Jeff) – Jason Kidd – It’s a strange world we live in where Jason Kidd, a fantasy hall of famer if there ever was one, falls to 74th after he helps lead a team to the championship. Kidd’s regular season stats were as unimpressive as any he’s ever compiled, but he was still a Top 50 fantasy player. While he has sure looked old at times in the playoffs, he has no plans to retire, and Dallas shouldn’t veer too much from what got them to this point next season. The risk is that his minutes will keep going down, followed by his stats, but someone who does so much in the box score – still – can’t be ignored any longer.

75. Team 3 (Tom) –  Emeka Okafor – Team 3 is in need of blocks and threes, and in this round I’ll address the former. Okafor blocked 1.8 shots last season, along with pulling down 9.8 boards. Right now I have four guys who have a shot at pulling in 9-plus boards. Not bad. I am a bit worried about this team’s FT%, which I’ll look to address in the next few rounds by finding shooters who can knock down free throws and 3-pointers. 

76. Team 4 (Greg) – DeMar DeRozan – This may be a tad premature, but DeRozan’s upside and freakish athletic ability is tough to pass up. His minutes shot up last year as did his points total. From January through the end of the season, The Raptors’ new go-to player did not average less than 18.5 points in a single month, culminating in 23.1 ppg in April. His peripherals lagged behind, but at just 22 years of age next season, I can easily see his blocks, steals and 3-point totals rising significantly.

77. Team 5 (Jeff) – Tony Parker – The Spurs are going to make one more run with their team that finished first in the West last year, and Parker is going to have to submit a Herculean effort. There’s no reason other than health why he can’t provide 18-20 points, 6-7 assists and a shooting percentage around 50 percent or better. Of course, Parker doesn’t hit threes and is merely average in free throws and steals, so even at his best he is more of a No. 2 point guard. Team 5 needs another scorer and some assists, so Parker it is.

78. Team 6 (Tom) – James Harden – The Mavs may have won the NBA Finals, but James Harden definitely won the playoffs. He was highly valuable for the Thunder coming off the bench, at times doing a better job running the offense than Russ Westbrook. During the regular season he played just 26.7 minutes per game, and posted decent numbers: 12.2 points, 3.1 rebounds, 1.4 threes and 1.1 steals. Now imagine what he’ll do when he plays 34-36 minutes each night this season. I like the upside of this pick.

79. Team 7 (Greg) – Anderson Varejao – The main reason the Cavs were among the worst teams in the history of the league last season was because Varejao missed more than half of it following ankle surgery. Finally named a starter, he was well on his way to a big season, averaging 9.1 points, 9.7 boards, 1.2 blocks, 0.9 steals and was shooting 53 percent from the field before it was derailed. Assuming good health, his numbers should remain the same with his points possibly being on the rise.

80. Team 8 (Jeff) – Marcus Thornton – We’re entering a tough stretch of the draft, but also a time where I’m willing to take some chances. Thornton has burned fantasy owners before, but his numbers with Sacramento last year are too good to ignore: 21.3 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 3.4 APG, 1.7 SPG, 2.0 3FG in 27 games. A lot will ride on what the Kings decide to do in the draft, and certainly a healthy Tyreke Evans will stunt Thornton’s numbers a bit. I’m not buying those gaudy digits for next year, but I do believe Thornton can average 17-19 points and a couple of threes, not to mention tolerable peripheral stats for a shooting guard. By training camp, this pick will either be looking awfully good or awfully risky.

81. Team 9 (Tom) – D.J. Augustin – This could be the year Augustin finally puts it all together. Last season was a bit up-and-down for the lil’ Bobcat, but in the end he provided great value in threes (1.4), assists (6.1) and free-throw percentage (90.3). His scoring (14.4) wasn’t so bad either, but on this team I’m more in need of his 3-point shooting and FT%. Looking at the current makeup of this team I can tell you that the ceiling is high, but a lot needs to go right for them to be among the top contenders. I’ll take the shot, though. 

82. Team 10 (Greg) – Darren Collison – With the exception of Aaron Brooks, no one in the NBA was a bigger fantasy disappointment last season than Collison. As Chris Paul’s understudy in ’09-10, he put up monumental numbers as a starter after Paul was injured. Unfortunately, it didn’t translate well in his full-time starting role in Indiana. The Pacers do that to point guards. The same thing happened to T.J. Ford a year earlier. But with Frank Vogel at the helm, things look to be different. A intelligent and highly motivated Collison is capable of terrific across the board totals. Team 10 is in desperate need of his assists and it should get that and more.

83. Team 11 (Jeff) – Devin Harris – This is crapshoot pick in the sense that Utah has been rumored to be taking Brandon Knight as their point guard of the future with the third pick in the draft, but until then we have to assume Harris is the man there. He wasn’t anything special after the trade to Utah, but he should retain much of his value as long as he’s starting for the Jazz or elsewhere. Team 11 needs a scoring point who gets to the line at a good clip, and Harris is the best of the remaining lot.

84. Team 12 (Tom) – Channing Frye – Frye hit 2.2 threes, blocked one shot and pulled in 6.7 rebounds per game last season. I’ll take it! I think sometimes we forget just how valuable he is as a 2-point shooter, especially for someone who is center-eligible. His rebounding is mediocre, but in this case I’ll admit it’s all about the three-point shooting. I think this pick will make more sense once you see who I take next. 

Team 1
PG – Rajon Rondo
SG – Ray Allen
G – Mo Williams
SF – Kevin Durant
PF – Paul Millsap
F – David West
C – Andrew Bynum
C –
U –
U –

Team 2
PG – Steve Nash
SG – Manu Ginobili
G – Jason Kidd
SF – LeBron James
PF – Elton Brand
F –
C – Joakim Noah
C – Greg Monroe
U –
U –

Team 3
PG – Chris Paul
SG –
G – Stephen Jackson
SF – Andre Iguodala
PF – LaMarcus Aldridge
F – Carlos Boozer
C – Emeka Okafor
C –
U – Kris Humphries
U –

Team 4
PG – Derrick Rose
SG –
G – Mike Conley
SF – Danny Granger
PF –
F – Dorell Wright
C – Brook Lopez
C – Serge Ibaka
U – DeMar DeRozan
U –

Team 5
PG – Jrue Holiday
SG – Dwyane Wade
G – Tony Parker
SF – Rudy Gay
PF – Blake Griffin
F –
C – Marcin Gortat
C – Tim Duncan
U –
U –

Team 6
PG – Deron Williams
SG – Joe Johnson
G – James Harden
SF –
PF – Zach Randolph
F – Andrea Bargnani
C – Al Horford
C – JaVale McGee
U –
U –

Team 7
PG – Kyle Lowry
SG – Monta Ellis
G –
SF – Michael Beasley
PF – J.J. Hickson
F –
C – Pau Gasol
C – David Lee
U – Anderson Varejao
U –

Team 8
PG – John Wall
SG – Marcus Thornton
G – Ty Lawson
SF – Carmelo Anthony
PF – Chris Bosh
F –
C – Kevin Love
C – Marc Gasol
U –
U –

Team 9
PG – Russell Westbrook
SG – Eric Gordon
G – D.J. Augustin
SF –
PF – Andray Blatche
F – DeMarcus Cousins
C – Al Jefferson
C – Andrew Bogut
U –
U –

Team 10
PG – Chauncey Billups
SG – Kobe Bryant
G – Darren Collison
SF – Gerald Wallace
PF –
F – Luol Deng
C – Amare Stoudemire
C –
U – Danilo Gallinari
U –

Team 11
PG – Stephen Curry
SG – Kevin Martin
G – Devin Harris
SF – Paul Pierce
PF – Kevin Garnett
F –
C – Dwight Howard
C – Roy Hibbert
U –
U –

Team 12
PG – Tyreke Evans
SG –
G – Brandon Jennings
SF –
PF – Dirk Nowitzki
F – Josh Smith
C – Nene
C – Luis Scola
U – Channing Frye
U –


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