• What’s up HoopBallers!

    We’ve come a long way, a very long way.

    Welcome to the final Stock Watch of the season, where it really does seem like it was just yesterday that I was writing the preseason edition. Some teams have finished their seasons while others have one game left so it’s more likely than not that most fantasy leagues have wrapped up.

    If you won your league, CONGRATS! I know how hard it was, all of the struggles, the injuries, the missed games, but you got through it. If you didn’t win, don’t be too hard on yourself. You’re not going to win every year and this is just one of those years. If It makes you feel any better, if I had to choose anyone in your league to win next year, I’m choosing you.

    So, this week’s edition is going to be formatted slightly differently considering that most teams have been resting players and no one’s value has really changed that much over the past week. Don’t worry though, it won’t be anything too big. So just sit back, relax and enjoy this season’s final edition of Stock Watch.

    Here are the “Stock Up” guys from last week with a little update on how their stocks have changed, with “Stock Up” meaning they’re still on the rise, “Neutral” meaning their stock hasn’t changed and “Stock Down” meaning they’re on the decline:

    Quinn Cook, PG, Golden State Warriors: Neutral

    Trey Burke, PG, New York Knicks: Neutral

    Karl-Anthony Towns, C, Minnesota Timberwolves: Stock Up

    Michael Beasley, SF/PF, New York Knicks: Neutral

    Tyler Ulis, PG, Phoenix Suns: Neutral

    Anthony Tolliver, SF/PF, Detroit Pistons: Stock Up

    MarShon Brooks, SG/SF, Memphis Grizzlies: Stock Up

    Stock Up

     Khris Middleton, SG/SF, Milwaukee Bucks

    Middleton has really come on as of late, averaging 22.4 points, 5.9 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 2.3 steals, 0.4 blocks and 1.4 triples while shooting .454 percent from the field over the past two weeks. He’s playing heavy minutes with 37.9 per game, the most out of any player over that two-week time span, and he’s the 11th ranked player over the past seven games. He’s emerged as the Bucks’ clear second option, attempting 17.0 shots per game which is the most out of any player not named Giannis Antetokounmpo. He’s only turning the ball over 2.9 times per game which is good for a player that has the ball in his hands as much Middleton does. He’s got a 25.1 percent usage rate since March 20th, the second highest on the team behind, you guessed it, the Greek Freak. The Bucks are going into the playoffs and Middleton is going to be a crucial part to their success, just as he likely was to his owners’ fantasy teams.

    Allen Crabbe, SG/SF, Brooklyn Nets

    Crabbe has had the best season of his career on this Brooklyn Nets team that is growing up right in front of our eyes. He’s been the 18th ranked player over the past two weeks and is putting up second round value with averages of 18.8 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 0.7 steals, 0.8 blocks and 3.7 triples in 28.5 minutes. He’s turned into Brooklyn’s best scorer as the 18.8 points are the most over the two-week span and he’s also attempting the most second most shots on the team with 11.7, second to only D’Angelo Russell (11.9). The great thing is, he doesn’t really create his own shot meaning that once the ball is given to him he’s usually shooting it within five seconds of catching it, which really limits his turnovers. Over the past six games he’s not even averaging a full turnover per game with 0.7 and he’s shooting a blazing .514 from the field. Safe to say it was definitely a good week for Crabbe and the Nets.

    Malik Monk, SG, Charlotte Hornets

    The Hornets finished their season on Tuesday night, meaning that Monk’s rookie campaign has officially come to a close. It didn’t start off very promising, but it definitely finished that way. Over the Hornets’ last seven games Monk averaged a team-high 18.0 points to go along with 1.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 0.6 steals, 0.6 blocks and 3.3 3-pointers on 46.9 percent shooting from the field. He still has to work on stuffing the stat sheet a little more, but those stats were good enough to rank him as the 74th player over that seven-game stretch. He was attempting the most shots on the team with 14.0 per game, yes, even higher than Kemba Walker and Dwight Howard who were both attempting 10.6. Monk managed to do all of this in only 23.3 minutes per game so imagine how much better he could’ve been with some increased playing time. He likely earned himself a larger part in the rotation come next season and could be a popular breakout candidate this offseason.

    Luke Kennard, SG, Detroit Pistons

    Kennard has really carved out a role in Detroit’s rotation as of late and that’s led to a definite increase in his fantasy output. He’s the 123rd ranked player over the past four games, which while isn’t amazing, is definitely serviceable for a player who was going undrafted in basically every league. He’s playing 29.6 minutes and putting up 13.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 0.8 steals and 2.0 3-pointers on .487 percent shooting from the field. He’s a very capable shooter and is no slouch on the defensive end as well, and he’s definitely proven that he’s capable of holding onto the ball as he’s only averaging 1.0 turnover in his last four games. Overall, this has been a successful season for Kennard, who has definitely surpassed many people’s expectations.

    Nikola Mirotic, SF/PF, New Orleans Pelicans

    Mirotic has been tremendous lately, coming in as the third ranked player in all of the NBA over his past four games. He’s serving well as a compliment to Anthony Davis and averaging 27.0 points, 11.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.8 blocks and 4.5 triples on a blazing .556 percent shooting. He’s doing his best DeMarcus Cousins impersonation and has had his best stretch of the season in the most important time for fantasy owners. He’s only averaging 0.5 turnovers per game over the past week in 34.0 minutes per game while also attempting the second most shots on the team with 18.0. He’s providing for his owners in almost every single category and knocking down 4.5 threes as a big man, which is insane in itself. If you owned Mirotic during your playoff run, you were definitely happy about it assuming you made it through his March swoon.

    Andre Ingram, SG/SF, Los Angeles Lakers

    Nope it’s not a typo. There isn’t supposed to be a “Brandon” in front of that last name Ingram. If you’ve been living under a rock, Andre Ingram is the latest NBA sensation as the 32-year-old played in his first NBA game Tuesday night for the Lakers. Ingram went on to score 19 points to go along with three rebounds, one assist, one steal, three blocks and four 3-pointers in 29 minutes. Right now he’s the number one ranked fantasy player in the NBA when it comes to per-game value but that’s only because he’s played in one game. He’ll probably be off of the Lakers’ roster come to beginning of next season, but for right now his stock is definitely rising.

    Here are the “Stock Down” guys from last week with an update on how their stock has changed with “Stock Down” meaning they’re still falling, “Neutral” meaning their stock hasn’t changed and “Stock Up” meaning that they’re on the rise:

    Paul George, SG/SF/PF, Oklahoma City Thunder: Stock Up

    Aaron Gordon, SF/PF, Orlando Magic: Neutral

    D’Angelo Russell, PG/SG, Brooklyn Nets: Stock Up

    Stock Down

    Kyle Lowry, PG, Toronto Raptors

    Lowry has a reputation for disappearing during the fantasy playoffs and he didn’t much to shed that appearance this season. Over the past two weeks Lowry is the 187th ranked player with averages of 10.0 points, 7.0 assists, 4.2 rebounds, 0.8 steals, 0.7 steals and 2.0 triples while shooting a horrid .328 percent from the field in 30.0 minutes. Lowry always chooses the absolute worst times to lose his shot and this year has been no different. He’s only attempting 10.7 shots per game which is lower than DeMar DeRozan, Serge Ibaka and Jonas Valanciunas. There’s no reason he shouldn’t be getting more attempts than Ibaka and Valanciunas and to go along with that he’s also only shooting 75.0 percent from the charity stripe compared to the 85.6 percent he’s shooting on the season. He’s not making it any better with the 3.3 turnovers he’s averaging as of late compared to the 2.4 he’s been averaging over the season. Lowry went cold at the worst possible time for his owners, something he seems to be quite good at.

    Draymond Green, SF/PF/C, Golden State Warriors

    The Warriors need Draymond to produce just as much as his owners do and right now he isn’t helping either one very much. He’s fallen outside of the top-200 over the Warriors’ past four games as he’s averaging just 9.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 5.5. assists, 0.8 steals, 0.5 blocks and 1.0 triples on .467 percent shooting in 29.0 minutes. Draymond usually doesn’t put up outrageous stats in any one category, instead contributing a little of everything. Right now he’s not even doing that at the level we know he’s capable of. His points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks are all down when compared to his season averages and for someone like Green, that can’t happen. Not to mention the 4.5 turnovers he’s been averaging over the past week which would be the sixth-most in the entire NBA over that time span. He was pretty good for the majority of the season, but when his owners needed him most he couldn’t put up the stat lines that they drafted him for.

    Kelly Olynyk, PF/C, Miami Heat

    Olynyk has been the 171st ranked player over the past two weeks and his minutes have slowly been declining. Over Miami’s past six games he’s averaged 11.7 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 0.3 steals and 1.8 triples on .500 percent shooting in only 18.1 minutes. For a player like Olynyk it’s important to stuff the stat sheet in the limited number of minutes he receives and he just hasn’t been able to do that as of late. He’s also averaging 1.8 turnovers, which wasn’t a big deal when he was producing well for owners but since that production has dropped, the turnovers mean much more. Overall, Olynyk has been one of the best pickups this season but if you needed through the very end of the season him for your fantasy playoffs I’m sure you weren’t too pleased.

    Well, that’s it for Stock Watch this season. I truly appreciate every person that has even read one word of any of the editions this season. Have a great offseason HoopBallers!

    If you want to talk about basketball or have any question you can find me on Twitter at: @najeeadams_

Fantasy News

  • Jon Leuer - F - Detroit Pistons

    The Pistons have agreed to give the Bucks Jon Leuer for Tony Snell and the 30th pick in the 2019 NBA Draft on Wednesday night.

    The Pistons now own two picks in the first round, but they take on Tony Snell's contract for this season and next season. The Pistons are stuck in the middle of the Eastern Conference right now, so they are trying to acquire picks hoping that they can find a gem that will lift their franchise.

    Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

  • Tony Snell - G - Milwaukee Bucks

    The Bucks have agreed to trade Tony Snell to the Pistons for Jon Leuer on Wednesday night.

    The Pistons will also receive the 30th pick in the first round of Thursday’s draft. The Bucks made it clear that they were trying to trade Snell and Ersan Ilyasova, so they have accomplished half of their goal. The Bucks save $4 million in salary this season and no longer have Snell’s $12 million on the books for the 2020-21 season.

    Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

  • R.J Barrett - G - College

    The New Orleans Pelicans are looking to assemble a package to get themselves the 2nd overall pick in the draft so that they can draft R.J Barrett before the Knicks can according to Peter Vecsey of the New York Post.

    This potential deal would hinge on convincing the Grizzlies to pass up on Ja Morant, a seemingly unlikely move seeing how they just traded Mike Conley with no PG coming back in return. With all the assets in their arsenal it’s certainly feasible that the Pelicans could find a way to make this work, but as of now it seems like a steep mountain to overcome.

    Source: Peter Vecsey on Twitter

  • Romeo Langford - G - College

    Romeo Langford said that his right thumb surgery recovery is ‘going good’ and that he expects to be ready to go for Summer League.

    The injury was never thought of being anything serious so this is right about where his recovery should be expected. Following a rough shooting season, the 19 year old guard has seen his draft value fluctuate a good amount since the beginning of the year, going from a sure-fire top 10 pick to floating around as a mid-first rounder. Still, he possesses solid two-way potential and could see some early playing time depending on the situation he lands in.

    Source: Scott Agness on Twitter

  • Dejounte Murray - G - San Antonio Spurs

    Meeting with reporters on Wednesday, Dejounte Murray said he has begun 4-on-4 scrimmages and expressed confidence that he will be ready for training camp.

    Murray seems to be on course to meet the timetable he was hit with after tearing his ACL a year ago. The young guard still figures to play a prominent role with the Spurs when he is able to suit up and should still carry some of that luster of fantasy potential that he carried at the beginning of last season. We'd like to see how he looks in the preseason before sounding off the hype alarms again but he could be a productive, top-70 type of guy once he returns to full speed.

    Source: San Antonio Express-News

  • RJ Barrett - SG/SF - College

    The Knicks decided to work out prospect Darius Garland on Wednesday but Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN has reported that they will still be selecting Duke prospect RJ Barrett with the third overall pick.

    It was very confusing for Knick fans today as the team decided to workout PG prospect Darius Garland a day before the draft. However, with the Pelicans potentially shopping the No. 4 pick, perhaps the Knicks were attempting to see what assets would be worth parting in order to acquire Garland and pair him with Barrett. They probably don’t have the assets that the Pelicans desire, but it is always worth a phone call.

    Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

  • Travis Schlenk - Team - Atlanta Hawks

    The Hawks have traded their second round pick, No. 44, to the Heat in exchange for a conditional 2024 second-rounder and cash considerations.

    The Heat had only one pick (No. 13) in the draft before acquiring this pick from the Hawks. They are currently hamstrung financially so they may have done this to add a player to their roster who they can add for the price tag of a second-rounder. The Hawks did this as they had six picks in this year’s draft and already have a roster filled with young talent. With five picks after this trade, the Hawks will continue to stay active in trade talks as there is no way that they add five rookies to their already youthful roster.

    Source: Chris Vivlamore

  • Darius Garland - PG - College

    According to John Gambadoro, the Pelicans are receiving plenty of interest from other teams who are looking to move up to the No. 4 pick to select point guard Darius Garland.

    The Pelicans have agreed to trade Anthony Davis to the Lakers and one piece that they would receive in return is the 4th overall pick in this year’s draft. With several teams interested in acquiring the Vanderbilt product, the Pelicans may look to move down in the draft while trying to acquire a veteran who can help this young core compete as soon as this upcoming season.

    Source: John Gambadoro on Twitter

  • Steven Adams - C - Oklahoma City Thunder

    According to Jake Fischer of SI, the Thunder are looking to shed salaries of players like Steven Adams, Dennis Schroeder and Andre Roberson to get under the salary cap and are willing to toss in the No. 21 pick to sweeten the deal.

    Fischer isn't typically a big newsbreaker but there have been several stories indicating that the Thunder are attempting to shed some salary. Steven Adams has two more years on his contract that will pay him a total of $53M. Despite the big price tag, there will be interest in the Kiwi by some teams with cap space in need of a rim protector, especially when the Thunder throw in a first round pick.

    Source: Jake Fischer on Twitter

  • David Vanterpool - Team - Minnesota Timberwolves

    The Wolves have hired David Vanterpool as an assistant coach.

    Vanterpool was a popular name on the interview circuit this summer but ultimately did not land a head coaching job. An assistant with Portland for the last seven seasons, one would expect that Vanterpool's responsibilities will increase in Minnesota.

    Source: Timberwolves PR on Twitter