Tag Archives: Marcin Gortat

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.

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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


2011-12 Damn Mock I: Fourth Round

We’ve reached the fourth round of the Damn Lies mock, and you know what that means: time to pick the old and the injured! We’ve gone and made our upside picks, now as you’ll see as we begin to pluck the old and the injured. Many of the players in this round have seen better days, in one way or another. Yet, in true DL&S fashion, we also throw in a few surprise picks in the midst of our AARP-HMO run.

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.

FIRST ROUND | SECOND ROUNDTHIRD ROUND

DAMN MOCK I: FOURTH ROUND

37. Team 12 (Tom) – Nene – After having gone with Tyreke Evans at the turn, I figured I’d follow up that pick with one of the most balanced fantasy basketballers out there. Nene is rock-solid, and a near lock to go 15-8-2 with a block and a steal, along with a 60% showing from the floor. I wanted to go Andrew Bogut here, but I’m a bit too concerned with his injuries (considering the current makeup of this team already). Nene provides great value in the middle, and considering he’s playing for a contract extension, this could be another highly valuable fantasy year for the Brazilian.  Continue reading


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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I’ll Be Damned: Category Hunting

Rudy can fail, but you might have to take that chance if you need threes and/or steals.

I hate daily-lineup fantasy leagues.

I’m sure I’m in the minority, but I just can’t stand how the best players on the free agent list end up going to whoever happens to be on line when news breaks. You’re on the computer all day and have no life? Congrats, you’re a great fantasy player!

I’m being dramatic, but these leagues where you can pick up as many as five players in a week if not more just get under my skin. I much prefer leagues that lock lineups every Monday and/or use a free agent auction budget for pickups.

But since most of the fantasy leagues on Yahoo! and ESPN and such are daily-lineup formats, you might as well use it to your advantage. I don’t love the term “streaming” and associate it more with pitchers in fantasy baseball, but streaming in hoops is a strategy if your league allows it.

I thought it would be helpful this week if I offered up the top waiver pickups based on individual categories. If you need something specific, take a gander at these potential additions… Continue reading


I’ll Be Damned: Torture Fantasy

Jeff always feels claustrophobic around the holidays.

Happy New Year! I’ve been away for a few weeks tending to matters of the holidays. While visiting family I sat down to write a column, but just when I’d begin typing everyone would enter the room and commence an intervention. It turns out I have the type of family that doesn’t appreciate me checking my phone every seven seconds for Andris Biedrins injury updates. Since I love spending time with my family, and also since they ended the intervention by placing me in an iron maiden, I haven’t been able to devote as much time to fantasy basketball as I would have liked. You’ll be glad to know that I’ve broken free of all familial obligations, however, and am back with a laser focus on fantasy hoops. The intervention worked only temporarily. Turns out I can’t do without those Biedrins updates. I NEED them Biedrins updates. Do you know a guy?

In all seriousness, I’m glad to be back. There’s nothing like the turn of a calendar year to make you take stock of yourself, by which I mean your fantasy team. Is there anything else? A man who spends more time scouring the waiver wire than grooming is a man who obviously has the rest of his life figured out. I must admit, though, that fantasy basketball often has me puzzled. Just when I think I’m out-smarting the competition, I drop a DeMarcus Cousins hours before he embarks on the best three-game stretch of his career. Ouch. This game forces you into tough decisions and tests your patience daily.

I wouldn’t have it any other way. Bring on 2011.

This week, I’m damned about the following players who’ve been the unsung heroes of 2010, steady and reliable uncovered gems that make up the backbone of championship roto teams. After I pay homage, I’ll look ahead at some players to keep an eye on for 2011 who have a chance to fill that role in the future. Continue reading


I’ll Be Damned: Magic Tricks and/or Illusions

In the "Careful What You Wish For Dept.", Stan Van Gundy and the Magic have traded Vince Carter and brought in Gilbert Arenas.

There’s nothing like a major trade to jolt us out of our routines. It’s mid-December, and things were starting to get a little monotonous. Now we have the ballsy Otis Smith, GM of Orlando, gutting the roster of a title-contending team with two monster deals. The fantasy landscape is turned on its head. It’s time to examine the fallout across the rosters of the Magic, Wizards and Suns, I’ll Be Damned-style.

This week, I’m naturally very damned by the following deals and their fallout:

Washington trades Gilbert Arenas to Orlando for Rashard Lewis

Phoenix trades Jason Richardson, Hedo Turkoglu and Earl Clark to Orlando for Vince Carter, Mickael Pietrus, Marcin Gortat and a 1st-round pick

I’ll be damned if

…Orlando doesn’t regret this.
As a fan of the Boston Celtics, I must say that I’m pretty happy that Dwight Howard has no backup center and that killer perimeter defender/dagger-three-point-shooter Pietrus is out of our hair. The Magic are hoping the, ahem, magic of Turkoglu running the offense circa 2009 fire up this team again. Positives: switching out Carter and Lewis for Richardson and Turkoglu is a wash at best and probably helpful. Of course, Arenas is such a flake that he could single-handedly screw this whole thing up. Advantage: Celtics and Heat. Continue reading


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