December 13, 2019, 5:59 pm
What’s up HoopBallers! Welcome to another edition of Stock Watch and this week we’ll be going over a couple of young guys who are starting to really break out.
Devonte’ Graham, PG/SG, Charlotte Hornets
Ladies and gentleman, we might be looking at this season’s Most Improved Player.
Seriously, Graham went from averaging 4.7 points, 2.6 assists, 1.7 rebounds and 0.7 triples on 28.1 percent from beyond the arc to putting up 20.0 points, 7.6 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 3.8 triples on 42.9 percent from deep. Yes, Graham’s minutes did receive a huge bump but it’s easy to see that he’s just been on a different level this year.
It takes a special kind of guy to erase a 20-point lead and basically beat an entire team yourself and that’s what Graham did against the Nets in his most recent outing. He was coming down court and pulling up from 30 right in front of Nets’ defenders with ease to finish with a career-high 40 points, five assists and five rebounds. He’s been doing this for a while though, but people are just now starting to notice.
Over the past two weeks, Graham is the tenth ranked player in 9-cat leagues with averages of 24.8 points, 3.9 rebounds, 7.8 assists, 5.0 triples and only 2.1 turnovers on 43.0 percent shooting in a team-high 35.1 minutes. He’s attempting the most shots (18.6) on the Hornets within that time and he’s also managing to knock down 83.3 percent of his team-leading 4.5 free throw attempts per game. When looking at his usage rate over the past eight games, Graham’s is 27.9 percent which is, yet again, leading the Hornets.
He’s literally breaking records and making history as he’s recently become the third-fastest player to hit 100 triples in a season behind only James Harden and Stephen Curry. That’s some great company to be in and Graham should be in line for all of the opportunity he can handle on this Hornets team for the remainder of the season. You most certainly won’t be able to buy low but if you’re one of the people who already own him consider yourself lucky and hold onto him for dear life.
Jaren Jackson Jr., PF, Memphis Grizzlies
After a disappointing start to the season, JJJ might finally be starting to turn things around. Over his last three games he’s playing the best basketball of his entire season and averaging a team-high 22.0 points to go along with 4.3 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 2.7 triples and 1.7 blocks on 50.0 percent shooting in 31.2 minutes.
He’s a top-75 guy within that time and he’s only going to continue moving up the ranks if he continues to play like this. His good play has correlated with Ja Morant’s return to the court and he’s even attempting the most shots (16.7) on the Grizzlies within that time. Everything just finally seems to be clicking for him and over his last three games he’s got team’s highest usage rate by far at 29.1 percent.
He’s worth buying low on because owners might already be too burned by him and ready to move on. If that’s the case then shoot out an offer because we’re not even half way through the season yet and Jackson Jr. could still end up living up to all of the hype he was receiving this offseason.
Davis Bertans, PF/C, Washington Wizards
Davis Bertans has been the Wizards’ best player over the past two weeks.
Yes, you read that right.
Not Bradley Beal, but Davis Bertans is the 6th-ranked player in fantasy over his past seven games and he doesn’t seem like he plans on slowing down anytime soon. He’s averaging 21.1 points, 5.0 rebounds, 1.0 assists and 5.4 triples on 50.5 percent shooting from the field in 32.0 minutes. Bertans is taking six fewer shots per game than Beal and somehow only averaging three fewer points.
He’s been helped by a foot injury to Thomas Bryant that has opened up more opportunity for him but that should stick even when Bryant returns. He’s been an absolute monster ever since he got to Washington and while the shooting percentage might not be sustainable, he’s still going to knock down at least 2.0 triples per game as he managed to put up 1.9 last season.
He’s putting up career-highs in points, rebounds, assists, steals, blocks and percentages and looks to be the real deal in terms of fantasy. He’s providing third round value as someone who was likely added as a flier a couple of weeks ago which is exactly why owners should try and sell high. See if someone will bite and give up a true top-50 guy for him but if not, he’s worth holding onto.
Jabari Parker, PF, Atlanta Hawks
Jabari Parker’s NBA career continues to be one of the most tragic in recent years as this season he hasn’t been much better than he was in the last couple. He’s the 134th-ranked player in fantasy right now with averages of 11.3 points, 6.0 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 1.3 steals on 44.6 percent shooting in 26.7 minutes.
Those aren’t bad numbers and he’d be worth holding onto if it weren’t for one giant missile heading straight for his fantasy value. That missile is named John Collins and he’ll be returning from his suspension very soon, December 23 to be exact, and will likely be inserted right back into the starting lineup. A ton of people, outside of those that own him, just sort of forgot that Collins was going to eventually come back but now that time is approaching.
He was a third round pick in most fantasy leagues and is still one of the league’s most promising young studs which means Parker will go right back to playing a bench role and being unrosterable in most leagues. If you can trade him now for someone with more long-term value, pull the trigger immediately.
Kristaps Porzingis, PF/C, Dallas Mavericks
Porzingis missed the entirety of last season and when he was traded to the Mavs everyone thought that it would be the beginning of something special for him. Well, we’re about 20 games into the season and Porzingis is playing the worst basketball of his entire career. He’s shooting a career-low in free throw, field goal and 3-point percentages and averaging the least amount of points since his rookie season.
Over the past two weeks he’s the 125th-ranked player in 9-cat leagues with averages of 12.7 points, 7.4 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 1.0 triples and 1.9 blocks on 37.2 percent shooting in 27.8 minutes. He’s one of only three players attempting more than 10.0 shots per game but he’s not even making the most of those. It’s tough to see him struggle this much because everyone knows that the potential is there, he just needs to find his rhythm again.
He went from a team where he was the one and only option to one where he’s basically been an afterthought. Dallas is the Luka Doncic show and Porzingis is in the audience just like the rest of us, which has to be a big adjustment for him. He likely won’t be this bad all season because there is so much talent there but most owners can’t wait for him to figure it out. He’s at rock-bottom now so try to buy-low if you can and hope that brighter days are ahead.
February 17, 2020, 7:12 pmDeMarre CarrollSF, San Antonio Spurs
The Rockets are expected to sign DeMarre Carroll after he clears waivers.
The Spurs just waived Carroll, who played sparingly this season in San Antonio. He figures to be fill a depth role on the Rockets.
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter
February 17, 2020, 7:06 pmJeff GreenSF, Houston Rockets
The Rockets have reportedly signed Jeff Green to a 10-day contract.
Green was waived by the Jazz in late December. He played just 18.4 minutes per game there, averaging 7.8 points and 2.7 rebounds.
Source: Tim MacMahon on Twitter
February 17, 2020, 6:38 pmDeMarre CarrollSF, San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs have agreed to buy out DeMarre Carroll.
Carroll only played 15 games this season with the Spurs and there were rumors that he would be traded. It's possible that the Rockets will sign him, but he hasn't been worth owning in fantasy at any point this campaign.
Source: Jeff McDonald on Twitter
February 17, 2020, 4:43 pmKris DunnPG, Chicago Bulls
According to reports, there is a growing expectation within the Bulls organization that Kris Dunn may miss the remainder of the season due to his right knee MCL sprain.
Nothing is certain at the moment, but fantasy owners should prepare for the possibility that Dunn will be shut down. He has dealt with a lot of swelling and the Bulls are now five games behind the Magic, who currently hold the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Coby White could see steady minutes at guard the rest of the way, but he has only shot 37 percent from the field this season.
Source: NBC Sports Chicago
February 17, 2020, 12:51 pmBrandon IngramSF, New Orleans Pelicans
It's reportedly a "foregone conclusion" that the Pelicans offer Brandon Ingram a max contract this summer.
No surprises there, as Ingram has erased the health concerns that lingered this summer with a huge season. He's blossomed into an All-Star after missing the end of last year with DVT in his right arm and is averaging career-highs across the board. New Orleans is a great spot for fantasy value so this is a win for everyone involved, assuming pen does eventually meet paper.
Source: The Athletic
February 17, 2020, 12:47 pmJohn Beilein, Cleveland Cavaliers
John Beilein and the Cavs have discussed the possibility of Beilein stepping down from his head coaching job during the All-Star break, per Adrian Wojnarowski.
Beilein's transition to the NBA has not gone well, but abandoning a five-year commitment so soon would be absolutely shocking. He has struggled to make the jump from the college game, altering his game plans and terminology in an effort to help get the Cavs on the same page, though he's had a few notable off-court missteps and has had trouble relating to his players. Even if he doesn't leave in the coming days, one has to imagine that Beilein won't be in Cleveland much longer.
Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter
February 16, 2020, 11:54 pmGiannis AntetokounmpoPF, Milwaukee Bucks
Giannis Antetokounmpo could not will his team to the win against Team LeBron on Sunday in what was the most competitive All-Star Game we have seen in quite some time.
Antetokounmpo scored 25 points with 11 boards on 12-of-21 shooting. He had two clutch blocks on LeBron James to keep his team alive, but ultimately Team LeBron was able to overpower Team Giannis. Antetokounmpo's value is being dragged down by free-throw shooting and turnovers, but he remains a top-30 asset nonetheless.
February 16, 2020, 11:49 pmAnthony DavisPF-C, Los Angeles Lakers
Anthony Davis secured the win for Team LeBron on Sunday with a game-winning free throw.
Davis scored 19 points with nine boards on 9-of-16 shooting. Kyle Lowry pulled him to the ground to send him to the line with a chance to win the game and AD delivered. Davis remains the No. 1 player in 9-cat formats and should have no issue maintaining that spot.
February 16, 2020, 11:46 pmKawhi LeonardSF, Los Angeles Clippers
Kawhi Leonard won the first Kobe Bryant All-Star Game MVP Award with 30 points as Team LeBron beat Team Giannis 157-155 on Sunday.
Leonard came out the gate hot as he knocked down eight triples prior to the extremely competitive fourth quarter. He turned it up with some clutch steals down the stretch and helped Team LeBron secure the win. Leonard is a lock for top-10 value as we shift our focus to the second half of the season.
February 15, 2020, 10:43 pmDerrick Jones Jr.SF, Miami Heat
Derrick Jones Jr. won the Dunk Contest on Saturday in an epic showdown with Aaron Gordon.
Jones and Gordon extended the Dunk Contest into overtime and treated us to some of the best dunks in recent memory. Jones put on a spectacular performance with one 360, between-the-legs dunk that was reminiscent of Vince Carter. Gordon dunked over Tacko Fall in his final dunk and put up dunks worthy of a trophy himself. Jones earned the nickname of Airplane Mode on Saturday and is an option at the end of your bench in 14-team leagues.