Tag Archives: Monta Ellis

RotoExperts Draft Kit: Top 25 Shooting Guards

"Women, Dwyane, amirite?"

From the RotoExperts 2011-12 NBA Draft Kit

These rankings were written on Dec. 15 and published a day later. Stephen Jackson should probably be dropped as he’s dealing with a troublesome back issue. O.J. Mayo should be a few spots lower as well until his role is more clear. Feel free to reach a little higher for Tony Allen as long as he remains the starting shooting guard in Memphis. 

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. Finally: this is a list of true shooting guards expected to play the majority of their minutes at the position this season. There are several combo guards, such as Dwyane Wade, who are eligible at point guard in some leagues but ranked on the shooting guard list for our purposes.

These rankings take into account not just stat projections, but injury risk, competition for minutes and other intangibles.



1. Dwyane Wade, MIA

Projected Stats: 24.3 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 4.7 APG, 0.8 3FG, 1.6 SPG, 1.2 BPG, 3.2 TO, 49.6 FG%, 75.0 FT%

Yes, Wade is in a tier all by himself. In fact, of all the shooting guards on this list, he’s the only one worthy of a first-round draft pick. Sure, there’s always the injury concern when it comes to Wade, but when he’s healthy he’s all but a lock to be among the top 5-7 players in the game. Continue reading

Damn Lies Season Preview: Busts

Jason Kidd is certainly no stranger to the term "Bust".

“Busts”. It’s not just a word that fills up my Google search history. In fantasy basketball, busts can ruin your season in either spectacular or subtle fashion. A bust could simply be a first-round pick that ends up returning third-round value. Or a 10th-rounder who you end up dropping by Week 3.

It’s always good to be on the lookout for these evil creatures. There’s nothing worse than having the excitement of a great fantasy draft ruined once the season begins by someone who you thought would flourish. The following “busts” come in all shapes and sizes. And you can save your jokes, because I’ve Googled them all.

Monta Ellis, PG/SG, GSW
I certainly don’t think Monta will be a major bust, but burning an early-second-round pick on him is rather risky this year. With new coach Mark Jackson, the Warriors could change their approach a bit, and the former point guard could be very hands on in trying to rein in the anything-goes tendencies of Ellis and Stephen Curry. There’s a chance the Dubs slow things down (they’ll have to just to allow for new center Kwame Brown to catch up) and focus on being a sounder team. Ellis’ overall numbers could be a notch worse this year, and I’m avoiding him in drafts.

Jason Kidd, PG, DAL
I gotta hand it to Kidd. The guy averaged 7.9 points and shot 36.1 percent from the field (!) yet still was the No. 31-ranked player in Yahoo! leagues last year. Kidd is 39 in March and the grueling gauntlet of a schedule we’re about to partake in isn’t going to make him look any more sprightly. I also feel a Roddy Beaubois breakout coming. I rank Kidd around 75th overall on my preseason cheat sheets. In other words, I’m going to let someone else draft him. 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.

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: Second Round

The Damn Lies & Statistics 2011-12 Mock Draft continues with round two. You know you love it.

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.



13. Team 12 (Tom) – Josh Smith – After taking Dirk in the first round, I have a little FT% wiggle room and a need for some defense, assists and more rebounds. I’ll opt to kill two birds with one stone here and pick up one of the league’s best all-around defenders and someone who can pull in 8-plus boards per game. As a plus, Smith did shoot a career-best 72.5% from the free-throw line and actually made 0.7 threes per game last season, so it’s not as if he’s completely deficient in those categories. I now have my Franklin and Bash. 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

Damn Lies Fantasy Preview: Golden State Warriors


When Stephen Curry is averaging 14 points a game come January, we're all going to wish we had Nellie back.


I don’t know where to begin with the revamped Warriors other than to say that the last few years Don Nelson has caused antacid sales to skyrocket among fantasy basketball owners. God bless him, Nellie was one of a kind.  He’d reel you in by starting Kelenna Azubuike for a week straight with Azubuike going off, and then inexplicably bench him after owners trampled each other like Wal-Mart shoppers en route to the waiver wire to pick him up.  With team management and Warriors fans on the verge of a collective nervous breakdown, Nellie stepped aside so his apprentice, Keith Smart, could take the reins.

I’m not sure about this choice as head coach.  Smart is credited with being Golden State’s defensive mastermind the past few years, which is the equivalent of calling Mel Gibson open-minded.  To be fair, the Warriors create chaos on both ends of the floor and there are many more possessions during their games, but I suspect that four mannequins and a lanky ventriloquist would have done a better job defending their basket.

It will be interesting to see if it will be more of the same under Smart or more of a controlled system.  Either way, second-year point guard Stephen Curry is flying off draft boards in the first round, in some drafts as high as the #4 pick. Curry was just ridiculous from the middle of January on last season, averaging 20.8 points, 7.0 assists, 1.9 steals and an absurd 3.3 3-pointers with terrific shooting percentages over his final 35 appearances.  Was it a mirage?  A product of Nellie’s free-for-all? We’ll soon find out.

New addition David Lee has been providing second or third-round value as a member of the Knicks the past two years, and unless Smart pulls a Nellie, his production should continue. Last year’s 20.2 points, 11.7 rebounds, a whopping 3.6 assists, 1.1 steals, 55 percent from the floor and 81 percent from the line had him challenging for the title of best fantasy center in many formats.  While the Knicks had absolutely no one to take minutes or rebounds away from Lee, the Warriors have Andris Biedrins, fellow newcomer Louis Amundson and a healthy Brandan Wright. Biedrins is coming off of a lousy ’09-10, and even in the best of times, remains one of the worst free-throw shooters in league history. I’d take a shot with him around the 11th round, but no sooner. Amundson will provide relief up front and should see 20 minutes or so per game. This was a great pickup by the Warriors as they certainly need his rebounding and toughness, but it will take an injury for him to be considered for your fantasy team.  The disappointing Wright is still the disappointing Wright, and it will take good health and a monumental start for him to garner any kind of serious consideration.

There’s an old joke that two wrongs don’t make a right, but two Wrights make an airplane.  Under the cloak of secrecy, Warriors GM Larry Riley got Dorell Wright out of Miami and will have first crack to build airplanes in the Golden State starting five.  This guy can do a little bit of everything, including knocking down threes and I will take a serious look at him in the middle rounds.  If Wright doesn’t pan out, look for Rodney Carney or possibly Brandan Wright to use his versatility and grab some minutes at small forward.

I’m not sure people realize the kind of monster statistical season Monta Ellis delivered in ’09-10.  He is a hall-of-fame ball hog, but as his owner, would you really care?  I’ll take the 25.5 points, 5.3 assists and 2.2 steals gleefully.  And, he added 3-point shooting to his arsenal, knocking down 1.2 per game last season, quadrupling his career norm in the category.  His numbers will likely come down a bit this year, but I’m pouncing on him in the third round if he’s available.  Reggie Williams, who was working a hot dog stand in Oracle Arena last season when Nellie summoned him to the floor, is likely his backup.  Though he is probably not draftable, keep a watchful eye for any Golden State player who is an injury away from some serious run.  Unless of course Smart slows them down.

PG: Stephen Curry, Charlie Bell
SG: Monta Ellis, Reggie Williams
SF: Dorell Wright, Rodney Carney
PF: David Lee, Brandan Wright
C: Andris Biedrins, Louis Amundson

Up Next: Denver Nuggets

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Daily Lies & Statistics: The Big Thumbsprain

There’s my new nickname for Shaq, after he suffered a serious-ish sprained thumb last night. An MRI could reveal something worse. For the Cavs, this is not going to affect them too much because they could conceivably be better without Thumbsprain, although they are now pretty thin at center since they have to wait another three weeks before they can re-sign Zydrunas Ilgauskas.

The subtraction of Shaq down the stretch should help Cleveland secure home court in the playoffs.

For fantasy owners, Anderson Varejao becomes the man. Varejao stepped up last night with a 14 & 10 and three blocks in 30 minutes, helping the Cavs dominate the Celtics in the fourth quarter en-route to a 108-88 win. LeBron James put up a ho-hum 36-7-9 last night and it’s finally time to say it: if he’s available in your league, pick him up.

Paul Pierce was a DNP for the Celts with a thumb injury of his own, and Marquis Daniels got the start. Daniels, who was dealing with the flu leading into the game, was underwhelming with just four points in 31 minutes. Chalk this up to his illness and give him a whirl if it appears Pierce is going to shut it down for a few more games.

There were two other fantasy-friendly contests last night, led by Denver stomping Golden State 127-112. Chauncey Billups enjoyed the break in defensive intensity and went off for 37-6-9, including 6-of-8 from three. This was also the perfect environment for J.R. Smith, who knocked down seven threes on the way to 25 points.

Golden State was led by the superb Stephen Curry, who finished with a 30-7-13 gem. It wasn’t enough to overcome Monta Ellis’s 6-for-22 shooting performance, and I’ll be damned if we don’t have another example of a chucking shooting guard who would make their team better if they didn’t play. I haven’t watched every single Warriors game, but maybe one of their fans can tell me: has Ellis passed the ball yet this year?

C.J. Watson missed the game with what is either the flu or appendicitis, but on the bright side he still doesn’t have to spend a weekend with Mrs. Needleman. Ronny Turiaf got a start and had 12 points, eight boards and two blocks in 27 minutes. The Warriors have four games next week, so if Turiaf does something similar again this weekend, it might be time to take a flier on him.

In D-League action, the Bucks edged the Pacers, 112-110, and if I’m reading this right Andrew Bogut had a 15 & 10 with two blocks in just 24 minutes. Also, Troy Murphy, one of my centers in the Damn Lies league, had three rebounds in 33 minutes. T.J. Ford (17-3-5) and Earl Watson (15-8-5) started together in the backcourt and played 39 minutes each. Keep an eye on Ford.

Speaking of the D-League, Hasheem Thabeet has been sent there by the Grizzlies, not a glowing endorsement of the number two pick in the draft. The Dakota Wizards? Talk about an incentive to get back to the big leagues. If that doesn’t light a fire, he’s a lost cause.

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