• With just over a month and a half in Yahoo standard leagues (of course, check your own settings) it appears trade season is upon us, at least if what’s been going on in my leagues is any indication.

    There’s been a flurry of pending trades including quite a few in one league that have been vetoed. The latest iteration of the insane was Kevin Durant and DAR to a middle-of-the-pack team with the No. 1 team receiving LeBron, Chris Paul and Kyle Lowry.

    Dudes in the league went straight basket case and you should have seen some of the criticisms and defenses of the proposed absurdity. One league-mate summed up the back and forth quite nicely: “sure I got the #1, #2, and #3 best players in fantasy…but you don’t understand just how badly those guys fit into my overall roster!! I made the trade because I wanted every single team to have a fair shot, it’s not about me. I actually don’t even need the money, it’s barely an amount of money that is worth my time, anyways! Hell, up until you all started bitching I had never even heard of LeBron James! He is barely even a top 50 player if you look at how he plays on Tuesdays. Tuesdays are 1/7th of the Entire schedule, so now I have to punt Tuesdays and you guys have no idea how hard that will be to adjust to. So in retrospect, this trade barely makes me any better..”

    HAHAHAHA, that’s the comment of the year in my opinion and now I almost feel bad previously trading him my Trae Young for his Lauri Legend. He proposed it, so not really – and it goes to show you that most trades, even “unfair” ones, like that one and my LaVine and Sabonis for Paul George, don’t typically get other managers so enraged.

    The trade was just one of more than a few that has been vetoed by consensus. I know, there’s something to say regarding often problematic herd consensus, but I’ve seen some pretty inane comments on the other end, with some people, including very knowledgeable and respected Fantasy Pros, stating that absent obvious collusion, a trade should never be vetoed.

    Now if you know me, you know I hate blanket, unqualified statements and that’s one. Outside of the near impossibility of proving collusion (unless it’s two brothers in my home leeg, lol, morons), I don’t buy that it’s the only valid reason to veto a trade.

    That’s literally just one’s opinion.

    There is nothing illegal about trying to rally the boys to protest an obviously bogus trade, one so egregious that it would ruin the competitive nature of the league.

    I mean, did I not pay the entry fee? Do I not have skin in the game?

    Yes, I did and yes, I do.

    That doesn’t mean it’s not petty to try to veto any trade you don’t like; it’s a definite abuse of the rules and it happens, but not all that often. The trades I see get vetoed usually are beyond one side hoodwinking the other. They’re typically trades that over 9 out of 10 managers would have extreme reactions to, trades that would insurmountably tip the balance of power in a league.

    Even outside of improvable collusion, for the sake of protecting the commons, I’m not against vetoing a trade such as the one I detailed.

    That doesn’t make me right; it just means I have an opinion.


    Week 14 Schedule

    There’s a large variance between teams so this week is a prime spot to play the schedule if you’re streaming, especially if your opponent has several key guys with 1 or 2 games.

    If you’re in that boat, you can stream to avoid losing too much ground.

    1 Game: NYK, WAS (in jolly, old London)
    2 Games: ATL, DAL
    4 games: BOS, CHA, DET, IND, LAC, MEM, PHO, SAS

    Monday has 6 games: Celts at Nets, Grizzlies at Rockets, Hornets at Spurs, Pistons at Jazz, Blazers at Kings and Pels at Clips.

    Tuesday has 6: Suns at Pacers, Wolves at Sixers, Thunder at Hawks, Heat at Bucks, Dubs at Nuggs and Bulls at Lakers.

    Wednesday has 8: Magic at Pistons, Raps at Celts, Nets at Rockets, Bucks at Grizz, Spurs at Mavs, Cavs at Blazers, Pels at Dubs and Jazz at Clips.

    Thursday has 6: Knicks “at” Wiz (in London), Kings at Hornets, Sixers at Pacers, Suns at Raps, Bulls at Nuggs and Lakers at Thunder.

    Friday has 7: Grizz at Celts, Heat at Pistons, Nets at Magic, Spurs at Wolves, Cavs at Jazz, Dubs at Clips and Pelicans at Blazers.

    Saturday has 10: Thunder at Sixers, Suns at Hornets, Kings at Pistons, Mavs at Pacers, Bucks at Magic, Celts at Hawks, Grizz at Raps, Heat at Bulls, Lakers at Rockets and Cavs at Nuggs.

    Sunday has 3: Hornets at Pacers, Suns at Wolves and Clips at Spurs.

    For My Streamers

    *all light schedule days in bold, and for many of you that means pretty much every day except Saturday. Charlotte, Indiana, Minny, Phoenix and San An have 3 of them.

    ATL: 2- Tu, Sa
    BRK: 3- M, W, F
    BOS: 4- M, W, F, Sa
    CHA: 4- M, Th, Sa, Su
    CHI: 3- Tu, Th, Sa
    CLE: 3- W, F, Sa
    DAL: 2- W, Sa
    DEN: 3- Tu, Th, Sa
    DET: 4- M, W, F, Sa
    GSW: 3- Tu, W, F
    HOU: 3- M, W, Sa
    IND: 4- Tu, Th, Sa, Su
    LAC: 4- M, W, F, Su
    LAL: 3- Tu, Th, Sa
    MEM: 4- M, W, F, Sa
    MIA: 3- Tu, F, Sa
    MIL: 3- Tu, W, Sa
    MIN: 3- Tu, F, Su
    NOR: 3- M, W, F
    NYK: 1- Th
    OKC: 3- Tu, Th, Sa
    ORL: 3- W, F, Sa
    PHI: 3- Tu, Th, Sa
    PHO: 3- Tu, Th, Sa, Su
    POR: 3- M, W, F
    SAC: 3- M, Th, Sa
    SAS: 4- M, W, F, Su
    TOR: 3- W, Th, Sa
    UTA: 3- M, W, F
    WAS: 1- Th


    Sun (of Week 13)/Mon: HOU, POR
    Mon/Tues: none
    Tues/Weds: GSW, MIL
    Weds/Thurs: TOR
    Thurs/Fri: none
    Fri/Sat: BOS, CLE, DET, MEM, MIA, ORL
    Sat/Sun: CHA, IND, PHO
    Sun/Mon (of Week 15): none

    3 games in 4 nights

    Tues/Weds/Fri: GSW

    Weds/Fri/Sat: BOS, CLE, DET, MEM, ORL,

    Weds/Thurs/Sat: TOR

    Thurs/Sat/Sun: CHA, IND, PHO

    Tu/Thurs+: CHI, DEN, IND, LAL, OKC, PHI, PHO

    Working the Wire

    Point Guards

    A moment of silence for Jose Juan Barea, the little fast car that could. The diminutive Boricua tore his Achilles tendon and at 34 years old, that might be a wrap for his professional career. I hope not, but if so, we’ll always have 2011, the second half of Game 5 which forever enshrined Barea in the hearts of all who hate front runners and gave us this iconic image which perfectly embodied the public’s perception of LeBron at the time (in all fairness, Bron worked on this facet of his game – and many others – and will post you up in a heartbeat; there’s also no doubting his greatness these days).

    Another moment of silence for Chris Bosh, the rare star who sacrificed the glory to get the chips, and was also one of the most unassuming, open cats in the L. I miss that dude.

    De’Anthony Melton had a top-60 week with 7.0 dimes, 2.8 steals and 1.3 blocks to go with 5.3 points, 0.5 threes and 4.3 rebounds. Very nice. The problem is that he only seems capable of high production when Devin Booker sits, thus whether you add him depends on how long you think Book (back) will be out. I personally am not adding him but if Booker gets shut down EOS, Melton is an automatic add. The Suns go 4 times this week and next.

    Tyus Jones had 5.8 assists and 1.3 steals last week in 22.5 minutes (top-120) and he still can’t shoot (36% from the field). The Wolves go 3 times. Derrick Rose and Jeff Teague are both “back” but Rose is sitting back-to-backs and Teague looked like he tweaked his bum ankle on Saturday so Jones could still hold value in 3 games this week.

    D.J. Augustin’s money counters and assists fell off last week, but he was still usable with 12.0 points, 1.3 threes, 2.8 assists and 1.0 steals on 44.8% from the field. That’s pretty close to his floor. Orlando has 3 games.

    Marcus Smart’s steals momentarily dried up, but he was also still usable with 10.5 points, 2.5 threes, 3.3 assists and 0.8 steals on 46.7% from the field. How long will that hold up? Boston plays 4 times.

    Fred VanVleet was still a top-100 play last week, though Kyle Lowry is back for now which means Freddy won’t be getting 30+ minutes a game. His numbers should take a pretty significant hit and on top of that he’s out on Sunday with a thigh bruise. The Raptors go 3 times.

    Austin Rivers is still starting for Eric Gordon (knee) and and got 12.5 points, 2.8 threes, 3.0 assists and 0.3 steals last week on a more than decent 46% from the field and 75% from the line. That was good for No. 153 in 9-cat and it won’t be pretty when his percentages adjust. The Rockets play 3 times.

    T.J. McConnell maintained his standard-league value last week as an assists and steals play seeing as JJ Redick (tight back) missed two games but he and Jimmy Butler (illness) are back so McConnell will really need the luck o’ the Irish to match the 27+ minutes he’s been getting over the last two weeks. Philly goes 3 times for a month.

    Shabazz Napier is still getting 27 minutes a game and his 13.5 points, 2.3 treys, 4.3 assists and 1.3 steals would have looked a whole lot better if he didn’t shoot 39.2%/62.5%. Even with the bad shooting he was still at standard-league value, which was better than the crap Spencer Dinwiddie has thrown up since ending his hot streak (only 25 minutes a game over the last two weeks). The Nets play 3 games this week and next.

    Shai Gorgeous has been popping up on a bunch of wires as he’s losing playing time and not scoring (Sweet Lou is do.ing.it.). For once, last week, he some of the other stuff that Dan is always talking about. SGA ended up in the top-120 with an anomalous 1.5 steals and 1.0 blocks to go with a not-so-pretty 7.8 points, 0.5 threes and 2.3 assists. The Clippers go 4 times three weeks in a row for deep-leaguers interested but I’ll wait until he does it a few more times.

    Jeremy Lin was hittin’ last week- 53.7% from the field for 15.0 points and 5.0 assists, but his 1.0 steals and 0.3 threes limited his value to low-end standard league territory. Atlanta goes 2 times this week; he’ll have to be extra linsane to be worth a stream and I’m not betting on that.

    Tyler Johnson lost minutes with Dion Waiters finally back and his top-175 value is only usable in 16+. Miami slogs 3 times this week and next.

    Monte Morris rose from the grave (top-110 last week) but outside of 16+ deep, I’m not considering a stream for 3 games next week with Will Barton finally back and Gary Harris on the way (hopefully for good).

    Shooting Guards

    Kevin Huerter busted out of his slump on Friday and collectively pulled in top-60 9-cat value on the week. Atlanta only has 2 games which sucks from a streaming perspective in shallower formats but deep-leaguers will have to just bite the bullet.

    Bryn Forbes FG shooting dipped below 43% so hiss counting stats didn’t look quite as good in 9-cat- 14.3 points, 2.5 treys, 5.0 rebounds and 0.8. steals a game. That’s still standard-league stuff.

    Marco Belinelli was hot last week with 16.5 points and 3.3 treys. That put him at top-75 for the week but if you use him in 12-deep, that’s not the shape of my heart. Belinelli was really good in that movie, too.

    The Spurs play 4 times this week.

    Terrence Ross wasn’t exactly hot last week (41.5% from the field) but his 16.5 points, 3.5 threes and 1.3 steals in 27.4 minutes last week landed him in the top-100. Orlando has 3 games.

    Danuel House cooled the hell off (39.1%) but still had enough counting stats to land in the top-120 last week – 7.5 points, 1.5 threes and over 2.0 stocks in 26.8 minutes a game, rewarding deep-league owners that stuck with him. His minutes are trending down a bit so watch out. The Rockets play 3 times this week, 4 times the next.

    Malik Beasley had a resurgence with Gary Harris bouncing back out of the rotations and as usually his value came from 14.8 points and 2.8 threes on great shooting. Will Barton is back and Harris should be soon so it’s about to get very crowded on the wing in the Mile High. Denver has 3 games.

    E’Twaun Moore is back, and though he dropped a dud on Saturday, be on the lookout if he gets hot. The Pels play 3 times.

    Josh Hart’s 1.0 threes, 6.5 boards, 1.8 steals, 0.3 blocks and 8.0 points on 32.4% shooting landed him around the top-150 last week.

    Kentavious Caldwell-Pope fell outside the top-200 last week and it’s getting ugly in L.A. without the King. The Lakers go 3 times four weeks in a row.

    Cavs report: Matthew Dellavedova (foot) and Rodney Hood (Achilles) are back playing but that didn’t stop Alec Burks’ bender- 16.3 points, 2.0 threes 4.7 boards, 1.0 blocks and 1.0 steals on 61.5% from the field. Good luck doing that again. The Cavs go 3 times.

    Small Forwards

    Hezonja …makes me… laugh.

    How do you solve a problem like Mario? (and yes, I have been waiting all season to use that clip- SCORE! LOL)

    The man, formerly known here as the Croat who shalt not be named, makes his first appearance on the WTW after ranking No. 16 in 9-cat over his last 3 games.

    No. 16.

    How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?

    I have no idea, so I dove into the numbers for a looksee- 14.3 points, 0.7 threes, 6.3 rebounds, 1.0 dimes, 3.7 steals, 0.3 blocks and 1.3 turnovers on 47.1% from the field and 90% from the line.

    Aside from the bountiful steals (No. 2 after Kawhi in those 3 games) he offers small value in FT%, low turnovers and rebounds. After that he’s a net negative in all other categories. And that’s how algorithmically derived in-a-vacuum-rankings can sometimes be misleading.

    Still, with THJ and Damyean Dotson banged up, someone has to play the wing for N.Y. That means Super Mario and Allonzo Trier. The Knicks also have 1 game this week which means I’ll leave him for somebody else to serenade but know knows what’ll happen in Babylon.

    Derrick Jones Jr. had 13.0 points, 1.0 threes, 5.0 boards, an amazing 2.3 steals and 0.7 blocks in 25.3 minutes a game. That put him at top-60 for the week. I have him stashed on my deep bench in the single roto league I’m in, and I’m always scared to throw him (and Mikal) out there. I’ll try this week. Miami has 3 games.

    Kelly Oubre followed up two weeks of bad play with a gem of a last four-game set- 18.0 points, 1.8 threes, 4.8 rebounds, 1.8 steals and 0.8 blocks. That was top-70 but Oubre hasn’t yet shown he can keep it up. Mikal Bridges was decent with top-100 value- 1.0 threes, 2.3 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.3 blocks and 0.5 turnovers, but his 4.5 points and only 25 minutes a game last week were very underwhelming. The Suns have 4 games this week and next.

    Jeff Green’s fantasy return returned to a very low-end top-150 last week and the Wiz play once which makes Green a steam imo unless you’re in a league deeper than 14 teams.

    Reggie Bullock is still in pole position for Detroit’s lead gunner with 14.5 points, 3.3 treys and 3.3 assists last week but not much else and since he shot 39.2%. He’s still useful as a 3s specialist a la Wayne Ellington (RIP). Detroit plays 4 games.

    DeAndre’ Bembry’s counting stats still looked decent last  week- 10.5 points, 0.5 threes, 4.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.8 steals but the bad shooting (43.9%/44.4%) and 2.5 turnovers makes him prohibitive in roto leagues of if you’re not punting 2 or 3 cats. Atlanta plays just 2 times.

    Cedi Osman is still the guy to own if you like numbers that look better than they are (top-175)-13.3 points, 1.7 threes, 3.0 rebounds and 0.3 steals last week. The Cavs go 3 times.

    Royce O’Neale had very quiet top-120 value with Ricky Rubio (hamstring) out last week and he seems to be the most consistent beneficiary when that happens. Utah goes 3 times for you deep-leaguers.

    Rodions Kurucs put up a low-end 11.3 points and 2.0 threes on an efficient 48.5% (top-160) while DeMarre Carroll had 15.0 points and 2.3 treys on 45% (top-180). Joe Harris is back, Allen Crabbe and RHJ are not and Brooklyn goes 3 times this week and next.

    I don’t know how it’s all going to fit when everyone gets healthy so call me when you try to wake her up.

    Power Forwards

    JaMychal Green was great last week with 17.3 points, 1.7 threes, 9.0 boards and a stock. Looks like a stream to me. The Grizz play 4 times for three weeks straight.

    Bam Adebayo (top-40 last week) was the only Miami guy on the wire worth using and even though Hassan Whiteside (illness) isn’t projected to miss (m)any more games, Bam is still closing games and more importantly getting more run than James Johnson and Kelly Olynyk and that’s how you get value in South Beach. Miami goes 3 times this week.

    Bobby Portis (elbow) was one of the few Bulls rolling- 16.3 points, 2.3 threes and 5.0 rebounds in 17 minutes a game- until missing Saturday’s game. The Bulls have 4 tank jobs.

    Jae Crowder’s hot streak lasted only a few games as he shot 22.7% from the field last week and that pretty much all you need to know. The Jazz go 3 times.

    P.J. Tucker finally did something notable. Last week, he shot 50% and averaged 13.0 points, 3.7 threes, 1.7 steals and 1.0 blocks, good for top-30 in 9-cat. No Comment. The Rockets run 3 times.

    Michael Beasley landed himself in the top-120 during his birthday week. I’m not in any leagues that have looking-off open shooters as a category, so I’ll pass. Lakers go 3 times for a month and good luck if you’re hanging your hopes on Beas because if he’s not the one…


    Thomas Bryant “cooled off” last week, mostly due to Scotty Brooks pulling a Jim Boylen and yanking him around (only 24 minutes on Friday despite having only 1 personal foul).  He was still good for top-80 value in 9-cat. The Wiz run only 1 time this week so if someone drops him, scoop him up if you’re competitive in all three efficiency stats and need a boost in H2H (like I am and I did in one leeg). His 4-4-4 will be beneficial down the strizetch. If you’re in a standard roto format and he’s still available, WTF!?! His game is perfectly suited for 9-cat.

    I’m not sure why Richaun Holmes seems to befuddle so many folks. It’s really simple: he’s a big that gives you a massive FG boost with blocks and very low turnovers with the occasional steal and he doesn’t murder you in rebounds and points. If that’s what you need in H2H, you hold him. If you need more than that, you stream him. He was top-35 last week in 9-cat, top-70 over the last two months so he’s a hold no matter what in roto. The Suns have 4 games this week and next.

    Charlotte goes 4 times if you want to throw some volume at the schedule and dare take a chance on Bismack Biyombo (8.0 rebounds and 1.3 blocks, top-180 last week). If you’re in a 100-deep you can go for  Willy Hernangomez (8.5 points, 7.3 boards and soul-crushing defense, top-365).

    Digression: How bad is this guy? He can pop a few Redenbachers in fantasy but in real life, he’s completely useless unless Crying Jordan decides to tank. He’s just a bad basketball player. Remember last season and early this season when fantasy guys were lambasting his coach for not playing him more? It’s almost as if a real NBA coach knows more than a gas bag fantasy pro. Who woulda thunk it?

    Anyways, Willy is such a cool name and everyone I know called Willy/Willie was a righteous dude. He’s definitely not worthy of the Free Willy moniker and I’m ‘bout to go back to calling him Guillermo- Memo for short. This stands until he can defend a pick and roll better than me, or maybe a chair.

    Mason Plumlee is back to the bench and back to posting numbers more worthy for 16-deep. He digs 3 times.

    Mitchell Robinson hurt his groin while rehabbing his ankle and still hasn’t made it back. You know how with certain guys, we just catch an affinity for (like Dan with Marvin Williams and Thad Young and Bruski with Richaun Holmes, formerly Marquese Chriss). That’s me with Big Meech.  Since last week, we’ve heard rumors of a possible Enes Kanter deal with Sacramento. Will that open up minutes for a guy that can’t even stay on the court? I’ve kept myself from adding Meech in H2H with one game this week, but I’m getting an itchy trigger finger; I’m usually pretty even-keeled bordering on cynical for most dudes, but to me, he’s the only living boy in New York.

    I will say this: if I’m in the last quadrant in the H2H rankings and hope to be fighting for a playoff spot, in most cases I would be streaming for instant production; I’d be streaming the hottest guys and not waiting on Meech, Mikal, or Jon Issac to save my season, and in many situations, there are a couple spots you should be streaming.

    Ed Davis stayed extra boss last week with 10.8 boards. He goes 3 times this week and next.

    Nerlens Noel, the Ed Davis of defense, is out with a concussion since banging his head after a scary fall. He’s not the fastest healer but he’ll be back at some point to plug-and-play for steals and blocks. Deep-leaguers should hold if possible. OKC runs 3 times though Ricky Bell Jr. (second from left) might miss all of ‘em.

    Alex Len went back to sucking as predicted. He has 2 games so you won’t be tempted to waste an add, even as a stream.

    Random Observations

    I apologize for the whammy I put on Tom Thibodeau (Bye, Bye Badman) and Steven Adams (ankle) last week.

    In addition to the putrid FT shooting, Russell Westbrook is shooting 22.9% from 3 this season. Yikes.

    If you missed it, James Harden set an NBA record, making 5 threes in 11 (now 12) straight games. Over those 11 games, he hit 73 treys. At that time, only 46 guys had made 73 threes the whole season.

    Continuing with the bearded one, last season he was only player in NBA history to lead the league in FTs made and 3s made in the same season. He’s on pace to do that again this season (Harden’s currently at 4.9 treys a game, just .1 behind Steph Curry, without all of the missed games). *All Harden nuggets courtesy of Stan Van Gundy who has the best laugh in the business.

    Last Friday vs. the Bulls, Steph Curry passed Jason Terry for 3rd most made 3-pointers in NBA history behind Ray Allen and Reggie Miller (on Saturday, also vs. the Bulls, Kyle Korver passed The Jet for No. 4). Assuming relative health for the baby-faced assassin, Steph should pass Jesus Shuttlesworth in a few years. James Harden is at No. 13 if you were wondering, and passed Kobe and Chauncey last week.

    Save tonight and fight the break of dawn,

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