Tag Archives: LeBron James

Moving Without: Is Kyle Lowry The Fantasy Hoops MVP?

We’re just about one month into the NBA season, so it’s time for us to get an jump naming an early front-runner for the Most Valuable Fantasy baller. Of course it’s no real surprise to see that Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Love and LeBron James are among the top four players in the game, as we approach the one-month mark of the season. But there are also some less than familiar names in the Top 10, including Danilo Gallinari, Ryan Anderson and, yes, Kyle Lowry. Of course you can make the case that anyone of the top four superstars are in fact all MVP-worthy, but I think the case has to be made that it’s Lowry, who was drafted in the 4th or 5th round in most cases, is the early favorite for the Fantasy Hoops MVP.

The case for Lowry takes a hit in 9-category leagues, thanks to his coughing up 3.4 turnovers per game. You also have a legitimate beef in complaining about his 42.9 FG%. But, outside of those two deficiencies, you have to consider what Lowry has done to place himself among the top five players in the game, 15 games into the season.

First, you love the fact that he’s third in the league in FT shooting (90.2%), among those taking at least 4.0 attempts per game. He’s 7th in the NBA in threes made (2.1 per), first among all guards in rebounds per game (6.6), third in the league in assists (8.7), fifth in steals (2.2) and he’s scoring a career-best 17.3 points per game. Those are fantastic numbers. Again, you can make the case that Kobe, LeBron, K-Love and Durant have all been more valuable, but relative to where Lowry was drafted, it’s hard not to give him the nod here. And the best part is, there’s no reason to believe that he’s going to slow down anytime soon. So, don’t “sell high” on him. Just sit back and enjoy the ride!

Let’s take a look at some other pressing NBA news, shall we?
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RotoExperts Draft Kit: Top 25 Small Forwards

Durant edges LeBron as the NBA's top flag football player

From the RotoExperts 2011-12 NBA Draft Kit

These rankings were written on Dec. 16 and published a day later. Derrick Williams is flying up draft boards, while Corey Maggette has been available late. Andrei Kirilenko’s future remains cloudy; rumors persist that he will sign with New Jersey but nothing is official yet. Austin Daye looked strong in the Pistons’ first exhibition game and has more upside than Tayshaun Prince. Watch that situation closely. 

Positional eligibility is important to consider when building your Fantasy basketball team. The top sites usually vary in terms of positional leniency, and the games played at a position is much foggier than in, say, Fantasy Baseball. For the purposes of the RotoExperts Top 25 positional rankings, we limited players to one list only; namely, the position they play most of the time. Under these circumstances, the small forward position is very top-heavy, with stars like LeBron James and Kevin Durant heading the list. The talent drops off significantly, so it is crucial that, depending on your league’s positional rules, you check to see what shooting guards and power forwards could also slot into your SF spot.

In general, drafting based on positional depth is a solid strategy, and true small forwards and true centers are in shorter supply this season than the three other positions. It’s just something to keep in mind while you are drafting; it might be a good idea to get one of the top SFs on this list before it’s too late.

The following rankings are based on a nine-category, head-to-head league format (PTS, REB, AST, STL, BLK, 3FG, FG%, FT%, TO), using Yahoo!’s positional eligibility. 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 SMALL FORWARD RANKINGS

TIER 1

1. Kevin Durant, OKC

Projected Stats: 28.6 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 2.7 APG, 2.0 3FG, 1.1 SPG, 1.0 BPG, 2.9 TO, 46.5 FG%, 89.6 FT%

He’s Fantasy Basketball’s 1A to LeBron’s 1B. Who you choose comes down to, perhaps, personal preference (do you dislike rooting for LeBron because of “The Decision”?) or, if you are a cold and calculating Fantasy player, or league format. In rotisserie scoring, Durant is the clear No. 1 overall pick because of his incredible free throw percentage at such a high volume. In H2H formats, it is more of a toss-up. Durant turns it over less than LeBron, has that better free throw percentage, and even bests him in blocks. He’s also easier to root for. There’s your tiebreaker! Continue reading


Fantasy & Free Agent Fest: Southeast 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. Jeff tackles the Southeast Division.

ATLANTA HAWKS
Fantasy-Worthy Players Under Contract (H2H Draft Round in Parentheses): F/C Al Horford (2/3), F Josh Smith (2/3), G Joe Johnson (4/5), G Jeff Teague (10/11), F Marvin Williams (13/14)
Key Unrestricted Free Agents: G Jamal Crawford
Key Restricted Free Agents: None
What to Look For: Is this the most boring team in the league or what? Smith was shopped at the draft and could conceivably be moved before the season. As a H2H shot-blocking forward, he still has a ton of value. Horford is a nice pick for those who don’t like to gamble. He’s simply as solid as they come. Johnson, however, has the kind of contract future lockouts are made of. He’ll be serviceable in fantasy and perhaps even a tick better than last year with Crawford likely to sign elsewhere. Hinrich is still around to hold back Jeff Teague, but Teague seems poised to be the starting point guard. It makes the most sense, as he injects needed energy into this yawn of a unit.
The Damn Lies Bold Recipe: Atlanta seems ready to declare Josh Smith “available”, and it is certainly worth seeing what they can get for him. A true center who allows them to play Horford at power forward would be nice, and Smith could snatch someone like, say, Andrew Bynum or Brook Lopez as part of a multi-team deal. The Hawks should certainly stay active regarding one of their top assets. Continue reading


Damn Lies Fantasy Hoops Show: Preseasonish Rankings

Are you ready for some… basketball? Yeah, I said it. Basketball. On the opening night of the NFL season, Jeff and Tom hopped on the airwaves for a good ol’ fashioned fantasy basketball convo. Will there be a season? At this point, we here at Damn Lies & Statistics are ready for anything, and that means starting to formulate our player rankings. Jeff and Tom discuss things like LeBron vs. Durant, Rudy Gay’s return, Mark Jackson’s possible coaching philosophy, some sleepers with upside, and much more. Thanks for listening! Continue reading


An Exceedingly Optimistic 2011-12 Fantasy Basketball Top 100

I finally made it to the fifth stage. First, there was denial, which naturally turned to anger. Bargaining was next. Then I got a sandwich. It was tasty. From there, I hit depression. They skimped on the pickles. Finally – and here it is September by gosh – I’m all about acceptance. Acceptance that The Game, on which this web site is predicated, could conceivably shutter for a long time. I have to realize there might not be a season, which means no fantasy season, which means… I don’t want to think about it. Yep, I’m already over acceptance. I’m coming full circle. Back to denial! It’s time for my Exceedingly Optimistic 2011-12 Fantasy Basketball Top 100. It cannot be denied.

Let’s set the scene: Rankings are based on a standard 9-category rotisserie league; Special attention paid to the Top 15 (the first tier); 82-game regular season beginning on Nov. 1, 2011; David Stern and Billy Hunter spooning. Good enough? Let’s begin.

TOP 15: THE STUDS
1. LeBron James, MIA – Ignore his odd performance in the Finals and expect an 82-game season for the ages.
2. Kevin Durant, OKC – If he’s to go No. 1 in any format, it is this one (to repeat, a 9-cat roto league that begins on Nov. 1, 2011, natch), thanks to his amazing free throw shooting and sub-3.0 turnovers. Continue reading


2011-12 Damn Mock I: First Round

You’re damn right Damn Lies is mocking.

We know it’s the middle of the Finals. We know both the draft and free agency are still to come. We know there may be a lockout. Yet nothing can stop our collective yen to mock draft. We want to mock the first, mock the most, and mock the people responsible for the Miller Lite “man up” commercials.

So with that, we present Round 1 of the earliest 2011-12 fantasy mock draft on the web. 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.

DAMN MOCK I FIRST ROUND

Team 1 (Greg) – Kevin Durant – It would be unfair if Durant actually reached his potential. I felt he was a little disappointing in 2010-11 and still put up sick totals (27.7 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 1.0 bpg, 1.1 spg, 1.9 3-pt, 88% FT). A case can be made For LeBron, Rose, Paul and even Wade, but the safe money has KD in the top spot. Continue reading


Damn Lies Fantasy Hoops Show: Is This Thing On?

The latest installment of the Damn Lies Fantasy Hoops Show took place Saturday as Jeff and Greg got together to talk some hoops. Jeff’s bumbling behind the controls led to an awkward first minute or so while he tried to get Greg on the Bat Phone. Then after Jeff spent, in his estimation, not nearly enough time gloating about his huge lead in the fantasy playoffs league, they shifted gears to discuss the NBA Finals. Particularly Game 2. Both guys agreed that we have a series on our hands and that Dallas landed a serious left hook at the perfect time. The show turns quickly into a comedy routine as Jeff teases Greg with visions of Isiah Thomas returning to run Greg’s beloved Knicks. Also discussed: Ricky Rubio signing with Minnesota and how it solidifies David Kahn as the No. 1 pick in a 2011 fantasy moron GM draft.

You can listen to the show here:
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Moving and Shaking: April Showers

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I’m in way too many fantasy hoops leagues. Next season I need to cut back. I can no longer follow 12 teams throughout the season. Sure, some prosper but it’s usually at the expense of a few teams getting the cold shoulder. And to those teams, I apologize.

Now, with two-plus weeks remaining in the 2010-11 season I am already telling you that I don’t want to be in your league next year. Who’s “you?” I have no idea. But I do need to cut back. Consider, I’m in one league where I picked up Jordan Crawford and am rooting my tail off for him to continue to  go off in the final two weeks of the season. In another league, I’m playing against Crawford and have to root against him. Or, I suppose if I wanted to get cute, I would have to root for some sort of balance where Crawford helps me in one league and doesn’t hurt me in the other. How fun is that? Not so fun, I tell you. Lesson learned? Time to cut back.

I don’t really have much movement to report in my many leagues, especially considering that in H2H leagues at most you have four teams still competing. So, I figured this week I’d just throw a few random thoughts your way.

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Fox Unbalanced: Wake Me Up for the Playoffs

"At least this isn't Libya" is a phrase Knick fans can use for at least a few more weeks.

It’s good to be back on the beat. I’d like to thank my good friend and colleague Mr. Andriesse for exposing us as frauds the other day. Yes, our NCAA Tournament brackets were an absolute embarrassment, yes we had Temple, UCLA, Washington, Utah St. and Pitt going way further than they did, and yes we didn’t write last week because we were rendered in the fetal position while watching our teams lose in the most disgusting fashion, but it was still a better showing than my 2010-11 fantasy basketball team. Funny thing is, we predicted the Big East would stink and that Jimmer Fredette would go on a Birdesque run through the tourney, yet i don’t think we have a team still alive.

On to more pressing matters, it looks as if the, uh, “Two Superstar” theory for the Knicks isn’t exactly going as planned. The New Yawkahs fell to 7-10 since Little Anthony the Imperialist joined the fray, including back-to-back home meltdowns against Boston and Orlando. From a fantasy perspective, Melo recorded probably his finest game as a Knick last night, totaling 24 points, five rebounds, nine assists and two steals, and sent legions of Knicks supporters into cardiac arrest by shooting 50 percent (6-12) from the field. From a fan’s perspective I think Melo jerseys are dangerously close to being burned in effigy at a more prolific rate than Muammar Gaddafi posters in Libya. This is not going to end well. They went from a team in salary cap Siberia, to miraculously one with a nice little future ahead of them in which to build, finally to one in which most of that cap is being spent on three guys who fit poorly together. Just wait until Amar’e Stoudemire disappears next season. But fear not Melo fans, Mike D’Antoni will be the fall guy next year if this isn’t turned around.

There are a little more than three weeks left in the regular season and I’ve got to say that when one has no shot at a fantasy championship, there is just an empty feeling when opening a box score. I do hope that Jeff, Tom and I can put together the same playoffs league we got going last April. That was a good time and that includes the draft in which I called my picks in to Jeff while driving in a monsoon on the New Jersey Turnpike. So, for all of you like me, who are completely out of your races, let’s take a sneak peek at a potential first-round of a 10-team, eight-category, non-percentage roto playoff draft in which the categories are as follows: Points (1 pt); FT Made (1 pt); Rebounds (2 pts); Assists (2 pts); 3-Pointer Made (3 pts); Steals (5 pts); Blocks (6 pts); Turnovers (-3 pts). Continue reading


Damn Lies Midseason Report: Southeast Division

On Wednesday I had the craziest nightmare. In my dream, I sat down at my computer to assess the Southeast Division and realized that I hadn’t watched a single game the entire year… then my teeth fell out.

It was a bizarre first half for the five teams in this division, as it seemed as if the three juggernauts – Miami, Orlando and Atlanta – were mediocre at best, but they combined to go a solid 90-46. The Bobcats, at 19-25, have fallen below expectations, but have played better and more exciting basketball since the coaching change from Larry Brown to Paul Silas. As for the Wizards and their legendary play away from the Verizon Center, I think Dorothy said it best.

The dirty, dirty moment when the Southeast Division changed forever.

Well, gentlemen of the Southeast Division, school is out and it is time to pay the piper as your parents will be receiving the following grades any day now. Continue reading


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