Tag Archives: Andrew Bynum

RotoExperts Draft Kit: Top 25 Centers

If only free throws were this easy for Dwight...

From the RotoExperts 2011-12 NBA Draft Kit

These rankings were written on Dec. 17 and published Dec. 20. I’ve done several drafts in the last few days and have noticed that you are going to have to reach for Greg Monroe, JaVale McGee and DeAndre Jordan if you want them. Joakim Noah is falling and offering great value.  

For years, the center position has been the most important one in Fantasy Basketball. These days, with so many power fowards manning the middle often enough to earn eligibility at the position, it isn’t as crucial to burn early picks on true centers. Pau GasolAmar’e StoudemireKevin Love and David Lee are just a few examples of players who are power forwards most of the time but pick up center eligibility in most leagues.

For the purposes of these rankings, we have including only the players who are expected to play the majority of their minutes at the true center position this year. As always, it is important to examine your own league’s positional eligibility rules prior to drafting. The following rankings are based on a nine-category, head-to-head league format (PTS, REB, AST, STL, BLK, 3FG, FG%, FT%, TO). We break down players into tiers as well to help you organize them within your overall cheat sheets. These rankings take into account not just stat projections, but injury risk, competition for minutes and other intangibles.

ROTOEXPERTS.COM CENTER RANKINGS

TIER 1

1. Dwight Howard, ORL

Projected Stats: 22.7 PPG, 13.9 RPG, 1.5 APG, 0.0 3FG, 1.3 SPG, 2.5 BPG, 3.5 TO, 59.1 FG%, 59.8 FT%

To the casual player, Howard is the No. 1 center in the league by a mile. In Fantasy, it certainly depends on the format. He’s more of a second or third-round value in rotisserie leagues. In a head-to-head or points-based format, he challenges Chris Paul for the No. 3 overall selection. Howard’s dominance in rebounds, blocks and field goal percentage sets your team up perfectly in H2H leagues, as you can punt free throws and surround him with complementary pieces in the other categories. Howard also averaged 1.4 steals last year, an underrated part of his game and an amazing number for a center.

Continue reading


Fantasy & Free Agent Fest: Pacific Division

In the days leading up to the start of free agency on Dec. 9, Damn Lies & Statistics will be taking a look at each team’s potential moves, top fantasy players and more. In the final installment, Greg Fox examines the Pacific Division.

GOLDEN STATE
Fantasy-Worthy Players Under Contract (H2H Draft Round in Parentheses): G Stephen Curry (1/2), G Monta Ellis (2), F Dorell Wright (4), F/C David Lee (4)
Key Unrestricted Free Agents: F Al Thornton
Key Restricted Free Agents: G Reggie Williams
What to Look For: The Warriors remain the most exciting group of fantasy players since the salad days of the Pittsburgh Pisces. New head coach Mark Jackson is already preaching defense, but those who remember the 6-3 turnstile can’t take that too seriously. What Jackson was was a terrific lead guard, who controlled the flow of a game and made everyone around him better. If his wisdom can rub off on Stephen Curry, then the third-year point guard will deliver first-round value. Hell, I felt he was brutal last year, and he still finished as a borderline first-rounder. His backcourt mate, Monta Ellis, if he can stay out of the emergency room following his nightly 48-minute high-wire acts, can also return silly dividends. Always a big-time scorer with strong percentages, Ellis has added a 3-point shot to his repertoire in recent years. Small forward Dorell Wright was arguably fantasy’s MVP last season, coming out of nowhere to produce terrific across-the-board numbers. Don’t go spending a third-round pick on the guy as he is bound to disappoint this time around, but keep him on the radar in the fourth or fifth round. As for disappointments, Warrior big men David Lee and Andris Biedrins impaled their owners a year ago. Lee was a second-round choice for many, but a Wilson Chandler incisor to Lee’s forearm contributed to his derailment and he should bounce back nicely in 2011-12. Biedrins may have to look for work elsewhere as Golden State brass seems to be tiring of his Claude Rains impression. Keep a close eye on power forward Ekpe Udoh, who could steal some minutes in the middle and provide decent rebounds and blocks.
The Damn Lies Bold Recipe: Nothing against Biedrins, but it is not going to work for him in the Bay area. The unfortunate thing is that the Warriors are stuck as they would have to sell him at 10 cents on the dollar and they may be better off using the amnesty clause on him. This team is in need of some hard-nosed players, willing to take a charge, as well as a big man who can change some shots. Tyson Chandler comes to mind, but the Warriors can’t afford him. DeAndre Jordan, Tayshaun Prince, Carl Landry, Chuck Hayes and Luch Richard Mbah a Moute all seem to fit this team’s needs. Time to take the plunge. Continue reading


Fox Unbalanced: Wake Me Up for the Playoffs, Part II

VCU has Shaka'd the world

You know, I’ve watched this VCU team a few times during the NCAA Tournament and not until the Elite Eight did I realize that Shaka Smart was the head coach. I swear I thought Nantz and Kellogg were referring to the team’s undersized big man who is killing people down low. Live and learn. He doesn’t look like a Shaka Smart… I mean, if one is born with this name, this person’s career is pretty much mapped out for him. It’s either bouncer, hitman, Zulu warrior or power forward. I wouldn’t think “coach” would be in the mix.

Last week, as the sight of my team in the Damn Lies standings had me on the brink of forging a prescription request from my internist for a cauldron of Zoloft, I escaped from the depression by breaking down the potential first round of a 10-team, eight-category, points-based playoffs league. Since it did momentarily have me thinking twice about accepting that harnessless window-washing job at the Chrysler Building, I figured I might as well put together round two.

Here was Round 1…

1. Derrick Rose

2. Kobe Bryant

3. Pau Gasol

4. Kevin Durant

5. Rajon Rondo

6. LeBron James

7. Dwyane Wade

8. Russell Westbrook

9. Serge Ibaka

10. Luol Deng

Round 2… Continue reading


Damn Lies Midseason Report: Pacific Division

Vince returned to get his degree, and has since procured a Master's in Fantasy Disappointment

As governments across the Middle East and Northern Africa are being toppled by the day due to a scarcity of fantasy basketball information, we at Damn Lies continue to be all about country.  With all due respect to our cronies in the biz, you are not going to find better graders anywhere, as the combination of Jeff Andriesse, Tom Lorenzo and I pulled a 4.0 GPA at the university level. Jeff led the way with a 1.8, Tom pulled a respectable 1.5 and I brown-nosed my way to a solid 0.7.

I find it pretty ironic that I’m putting midseason report cards together for the Pacific Division as it has an inordinate amount of players who never went to college (see: Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum, Monta Ellis) as well as even more guys who couldn’t spell cat if you spotted them the C and the T (see: Sacramento Kings roster). Nevertheless, it’s time to get these gents graded, and who better to do so than someone whose MENSA card keeps getting lost in the mail. Continue reading


Fox Unbalanced: You got to know when to hold ’em

I can’t believe that my main man Tom Lorenzo stole my thunder with this whole Tony Allen/O.J. Mayo thing. I really can’t blame him, and this is such a great story that I’m still going to run with it instead of talking about last night’s incredible Boston/San Antonio brouhaha. I mean, how much is there to say? Rajon Rondo is a freak, Big Baby is the most underrated player in the league, Tim Duncan is feeling the effects of turning 50, and the Spurs need to get their act together defensively if they are going to win a championship.

But Greg says "Don't Cut Bait. Hold the Mayo."

I love this latest trend in which teammates wager a few milkshakes while playing cards on their charter flights from NBA city to NBA city. The other night, Allen and Mayo had to be separated over a game of Go Fish as Mayo appears to have lost and proceeded to welsh on their bet. Allen retaliated by calling Mayo a dirty word (I believe stinker was the ugly term used) and it escalated from there.

What makes this all the more interesting and entertaining is the fact that the two are officially competing with each other for minutes in the Grizz backcourt. Allen, who has suffered myriad foot and leg issues over the years, appears healthy and is averaging 10.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and a freakish 3.4 steals and is a perfect 13-for-13 from the line in 26.4 minutes over his last five games. Mayo appears to have fallen out of favor with head coach Lionel Hollins. But as my colleague Mr. Lorenzo will tell you, he (Mayo, not Lorenzo) is still very young (23) and talented and bait should not be cut just yet. I do recommend hopping on Allen like a cheap suit at this point as he could carry your team in steals, at least until Xavier Henry returns from a sore knee.

Hollins has since banned all card games during team travel, putting a sad end to the Old Maid wars between Zach Randolph and Hamed Haddadi. And speaking of wars, fantasy basketball is a game of attrition. Let’s find a few guys who are bound to turn it around as we near the midway point of the season. Continue reading


Damn Lies Fantasy Preview: Los Angeles Lakers

What do you say about the team that has everything? The Lakers are loaded once again, and even though pundits will try to gurgitate the nonsense that Kobe Bryant has finally won titles “by himself” or something, we all know better. So with all due respect to the scrappy underdogs in Miami that the nation is sure to rally behind, the Lakers are the favorite to win it all again.

 

Kobe Bryant daughters kittens fluffy pillows sunsets meadows serenity now

 

LIES
Sure, Andrew Bynum is out for a month recovering from knee surgery. But this team has overcome Bynum injuries ad nauseum and can do it again. Is it really a step down to Lamar Odom? With Odom at the ‘4’ and Pau Gasol in his prime at the ‘5’, no one is crying a tear over Bynum’s misfortune (except maybe anyone who has already drafted a team and took him early). Where should we be drafting Bynum? How about “we” just draft someone else this year and let “anyone else feeling daring” take him as a starting center. Of course, with every injury comes the added value. If you can snag Bynum as your third center, with a little patience you could have a powerhouse team by midseason. He’ll continue to slip down draft boards.

DAMN LIES
Odom is intriguing, as he pulled down nearly 10 rebounds a game last year, a number that could rise even more with Bynum out. Yes, Lamar will be a stud for the first month, but I wouldn’t burn too high a pick on him knowing that his minutes and production tend to fluctuate wildly when the Lakers are at full strength. Have full confidence in Bryant and Gasol, however, as first-round picks. Kobe may be nursing 12 different injuries that won’t go away, but the guy would put up numbers somehow if you removed his limbs. He knows no other way, and is a candidate to be drafted anywhere in the latter half of the first. Gasol is going late-first as well, and as long as he’s healthy it will pay off. Gasol grabbed a career-best 11.3 rebounds last year, and with the 3-4 assists he adds, plus strong percentages, there aren’t too many better centers out there.

STATISTICS
There isn’t too much else on the roster to recommend, fantasy geeks. Ron Artest is no longer playable, despite his Finals performance. The world still winces every time he hoists a three, his steals were down to 1.4 per game last year, and he continues to brick free throws (68.8 percent in ’09-10). Oh, and the Lakers signed Matt Barnes in the offseason. Barnes will spell Artest and Kobe and is a nice waiver wire option should either miss time due to injury. As usual, the Laker point guard spot is one to avoid in fantasy. Derek Fisher and new face Steve Blake will likely split minutes down the middle, with Fisher playing late in close games so he can swish crazy three after crazy three when plays break down and the shot clock is expiring.

Bitter Celtics fan, signing off.

DEPTH CHART
PG – Derek Fisher, Steve Blake
SG – Kobe Bryant, Shannon Brown
SF – Ron Artest, Matt Barnes
PF – Pau Gasol, Lamar Odom
C – Andrew Bynum (injured), Theo Ratliff

Up Next: Phoenix Suns

Full Schedule


Daily Lies & Statistics: Mo’s shoulder, Mo’s problem.

This news is “turrible” if you’re Charles Barkley, but “terrible” if you’re the rest of us: Mo Williams will miss the next 4-6 weeks with a sprained shoulder. Oy vey! I don’t think that people who don’t own Williams realize how valuable of a fantasy baller he really is. Think of the fact that he’s 3rd in the league in threes made (97), 5th in FT% at 89.6 percent, and in the Top 10 among point guards in scoring (16.9) and assists (5.1). It’s a tough loss! He’s not Jason Terry, a guy who he’s typically compared to. He’s better. It’s going to be a tough loss for the Cavs, but possibly even tougher for fantasy owners to rebound from.

So where do they, and you, go from here?

Go Delonte West, young man. In Thursday’s game against the Lakers West was slotted into the starting lineup. He had a mediocre line — 3 points on 1-of-4 shooting, 4 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 blocks in 43 minutes — but it’s easy to give him a pass on this one. I’m not sure how well I would do if I was called upon at the last-minute to try to shut down the Laker backcourt on national t.v. I probably would have posted the same exact line as West. Though, I’m a pretty damn good shooter. Might I have outscored him? OK, everyone relax. Enough about me… I would pick up West in most/all formats.

Daniel “boobie/debbie” Gibson is another guy to loo

You can feel it, it's electric! Boobie, boobie, boobie....Gibson.

k at. He too was limited last night with just 3 points and 2 assists in 20 minutes, but in deep leagues you should look at Gibby. He’s one of the top 3-point shooting guards in the league at 47.4 percent. He’s not a 12-team add, but in 18-team leagues you can now look to Gibson for some 3-point value.

J.J. Hickson should really excel now that Mo Williams is out… nah, I’m kidding. But in his first game without Williams calling the shots Hickson posted his first career double-double with 11 points and a career-high 14 rebounds in 25 minutes. You have to watch for Anderson Varejao, but right now Hickson looks like a nice deep add as well.

Andrew Bynum had some trouble dealing with the Shaq-tus. Bynum went for just 7 points and 8 rebounds in 25 minutes. That’s almost an identical line to the 8 and 8 he posted the night before against Dwight Howard. Yeah, I know, tough matchups. But who among us isn’t worried about Bynum? He’s got one of the best power forwards in the game clogging up the paint and a terrific rebounding sixth man in Lamar Odom.

Eric Gordon (toe) did not play against the Nuggets. There’s no word on whether it was the big toe and it was at the market. What we do know is that he’s day-to-day.

Al Thornton was back in the starting lineup for the Clips and wasted the opportunity. He his just 2-of-7 shots and fouled out in 18 minutes. Booooring. Rasual Butler was moved to the bench, yet came in for 35 minutes. He too bored me as he shot 1-of-5 from the floor.

Craig Smith, best name in basketball, actually led the Clippers in scoring with 21 points and 6 rebounds. Like this guy. Like him now that Blake Griffin is no longer coming back. I would give him a look.

Thirteen games on the schedule for Friday night. Luckily we gave Jeff the night off.

Remember, Brandon Roy is out and Kevin Garnett is questionable.


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