Fantasy Doctor, NBA / Oct 9, 2009 / 2:41 pm

The 5 Most Intriguing Players With New Teams In 2009-10

Photo. Tony Gutierrez, AP Photo

Photo. Tony Gutierrez, AP Photo

Greetings fellow fantasy fiends. My name is Jason Hahn and I’ll be your new Fantasy Doctor here on Dimemag.com.

On top of being a huge fan of the NBA, I’m also a colossal enthusiast of fantasy basketball who has seen some success in recent years. I’ve won three league championships since 2005 and have finished outside of the top three only once (fifth place in a 20-team league during the 2008-09 season). I hope I’ll be able to share some helpful insights with you all this season and eagerly look forward to learning from you guys as well.

So, without further ado, I thought it would be fitting for me to discuss the five most intriguing players with new teams this season.

1. Shawn Marion (SF/PF – Dallas Mavericks): There once was a time when Marion was a lock to finish each season as a top-five fantasy player. Those days, as we all know, are over. While he hasn’t exactly flopped in his 1.2 seasons out of Phoenix, the Matrix has definitely lost a step or two. But with his arrival in Dallas during the offseason, Marion finally has a real shot at boosting his production again. Not only did he have a full summer of training camp with his new team, but he has a very capable floor captain in Jason Kidd running the show and an outright stud in Dirk Nowitzki to play off of on the perimeter. Marion thrived with Steve Nash as his point guard in Phoenix, and Kidd is probably the closest thing to Nash that Marion will see again. While he won’t return to being the fantasy monster he was in Phoenix, expect Marion to benefit from a clean start with the Mavs, especially with Kidd running the point.

2. Vince Carter (SG/SF – Orlando Magic): His reputation usually causes people to overlook his production, but make no mistake – Carter is a valuable fantasy asset. Not only has he been healthy during the past four seasons in New Jersey, missing just 11 games during that time span, but he’s been a solid, consistent all-around player. His scoring has dropped off a bit and on a loaded roster in Orlando, Carter’s scoring average will likely dip into the high teens. Regardless, expect him to take full advantage of playing with a dominant big man in Dwight Howard and to benefit from open looks from three-point territory in the same way Hedo Turkoglu did. His points will dip, but expect more than two three-pointers a night along with good overall production, especially during the first 10 games of the season when Rashard Lewis serves his suspension.

3. Hedo Turkoglu (SG/SF – Toronto Raptors): Here’s where the optimism stops. Not only has Turkoglu sat out of the Raptors’ training camp this summer because of “fatigue,” but he also struggled mightily at the FIBA tournament during the latter part of the summer, averaging just 9.8 points on 33 percent shooting while suffering through soreness in his right knee. Tack on to all this his brand new contract, and it’s easy to suspect that Turkoglu will fall into the trap of letting up and coasting through his first season with his new team, as so many players with new contracts do. He’ll still be good for about two three-pointers and solid all-around numbers each night, but expect inconsistency to be the theme of his 2009-10 season.

4. Andre Miller (PG – Portland Trail Blazers): While there has been talk that the Blazers’ newly-signed point guard could start the season coming off the pine and running the second unit, Miller has played well in his recent preseason outings with his new team and looks more likely to be a starter on opening night. Still, on a young team stuffed with talent, he’ll be hard-pressed to maintain his strong numbers from the past two seasons in Philadelphia. Miller, 33, also failed a conditioning test late last month, which doesn’t bode well for his production this year. Despite his nice new contract, expect healthy competition for the starting point guard spot from the underappreciated Steve Blake. The battle for minutes at that position will likely evolve over the course of the season and could depend on nightly matchups. Don’t be afraid to draft Miller, who is still a smart, strong point guard whose leadership will be invaluable for this young team, but make sure your expectations are in line with the reality of his situation in Portland.

5. Trevor Ariza (SF – Houston Rockets): Ariza certainly made a name for himself (and boosted his contract value) during last year’s playoffs, and his arrival in Houston sets him up to finally take on the major team role that he’s always wanted. But with the absence of Yao Ming and the uncertain health of Tracy McGrady, Ariza might find himself biting off more than he can chew. There’s little doubt that he’ll take the lion’s share of minutes at the small forward position on the Rockets, but there’s also little doubt that he’ll be exposed to more defensive pressure than he’s ever seen as opposing teams take whatever focus they would have had for Yao, T-Mac or Ron Artest and transfer it to Ariza and Luis Scola, who will also shoulder a big load for Houston this year. Without the likes of Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol around, expect bigger numbers across the board for Ariza this season. But also expect his weaknesses to be exposed as he’ll struggle with his shooting and turnovers while learning how to be something of a leader on a depleted team.

Throughout the season, be sure to leave your questions, comments, concerns, trade offers, roster problems and more in the comments below.

Follow Jason on Twitter at @fbasketballblog.

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  • Kobeef

    ahh…Ben Gordon?
    Possibly the most leathal closer in the NBA gets a new team and a chance for big minutes and he doesn’t beat-out Ariza?

  • Jake

    Ariza will NOT flourish in Houston. He might of if Tmac and Yao were still around, but even then he’d just be a lesser Artest.

  • http://www.realgm.com Rare Air

    Got a feeling Ariza may absolutely disappear this year in H-town.

    Ron Ron isn’t on this list because???? That’s going to be the biggest gong show of them all,

    I think Orlando may suffer the season after flop – D How is way into this new acting career of his, Hedo was their difference maker.

    I’d put RJ on the list as well, gives the spurs some needed punch,

    Stating the obvious, but how freakin loaded is the west?!

    Season cannot start soon enough.

  • doc

    Ariza is about to go the Deshawn Stevenson route.And you cant be the most lethal closer in the league and never won the big show.I know what you mean though.

  • IG

    Good work! Will the fantasy doctor be appearing everyday during the season?

    Ariza is 3-21 in the preseason. Shots are a lot tougher without his Lakers teammates setting his ass up.

  • http://www.dimemag.com Aron Phillips

    I agree that BG could have made this list, but this is all from a FANTASY perspective. Sure Ron and Richard are going to have a big year, but they’re on stacked teams. These were “intriguing” players and their situations, not necessarily the Top 5 fantasy studs.

  • http://dimemag.com/category/fantasy-basketball/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Kobeef: It’s tough to narrow the list down to five, and you’re right – Gordon is interesting this season, but Ariza’s potential to breakout (or bust) seemed more intriguing to me.

    @Rare Air: Artest is certainly going to be fun to keep track of this season, but not so much from a fantasy perspective, methinks. Again, it’s mighty tough to narrow it down to five, but someone had to do it.

    @IG: Yes, I’ll do my absolute best to be around everyday during the season!

  • Me

    This jason hahn guy (or whoever edited this article) needs to look over everything before you guys post. first article i’ve read here in awhile that isn’t full of errors.

  • don

    You Laker homers thinking Ron Ron will have a big year is crazy. He is possibly the most overrated offensive player in the game. He shoots up crazy shots (horrible selection), only shoots about 40% from the floor and even his true strength (defense) has been slipping the last couple of years.

    The Lakers lost out big time on the Artest/Ariza swap.

  • jmg

    12pts, 9rebs and 7asst in 16 minutes of play sounds good to all Laker fans. yes, it was pre-season but those numbers look good from a “overrated” Ron Artest. lakers didnt lose out on the artest/ariza swap…GTFO

  • Mellmeister

    Well, if you guys watched the preseason game of Houston vs Boston then you’d know that Trevor Ariza is already workin’ on the helm… he might not be a Leader and i’m not sure if he’ll ever be, but the season’s just about to start. i think he’ll play like grant hill… hope he doesn’t get the injury that hill had though.
    ceiling: he’d be a good scottie pippen to someone’s michael jordan.

    by the way, fantasy doctor… d’ya think ramon sessions would still be a fantasy sleeper like he was back in milwaukee? :)

  • http://dimemag.com/category/fantasy-basketball/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Mellmeister Ramon Sessions is going to be interesting to watch this year. He’s got the talent, no question, but it’s likely that he’ll split time with Jonny Flynn as the Timberwolves continue to build up their young players. If Flynn proves to be a bust, or if he hits the rookie wall, then yes, Sessions will prove to be a rewarding sleeper. Keep Sessions on your radar, for sure.

  • mr wilson

    What the heck is Houston gon’ do? Start Ariza and Shane together?

  • LakeShow84

    @ DON

    Artest is a much more ESTABLISHED offensive player than Ariza.. Ariza hit some 3’s in the playoffs but his TWO steals were what got him his contract.. Artest is also a top 3 post playing SF.. give me 5 SF’s who bang down there harder than him.. and can lock down 2-4.. Ariza could guard 1-3, Kobe can do that too though.. getting Artest makes us much better/flexible defensively and offensively we got another post player in the Triangle..

    BOOYAH lol

  • knock knock

    Ariza had an amazing performance last year, but he still get’s routinely beaten by paul pierce, allen. Artest is no slouch at d, seen him play in the pro am during summer

  • Ross

    I stopped taking the Dime fantasy doctor seriously after he advised that Nocioni will be more valuable than Garcia last year.

  • http://dimemag.com/category/fantasy-basketball/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Ross: Broken trust is hard to regain but hopefully I’ll be able to win it back. I hope you’ll keep on reading and honest feedback is always appreciated.

  • Ross

    @Fantasy Doctor

    No worries. I read Dime regularly anyways. I hope to rebound from my crappy injury-laden season from last year. Hope this year’s better injury-wise.

  • Josh Tha roc

    Hey new fantasy doc.
    So I’m guessing Katz or cfg was the old fantasy doc. What happened to those guys anyway. Probably couldve used a farewell article or somethin like that.

    Ps noce is a hot pickup right now.

  • David_Brandon

    ok you can tell us now, jason, who was last years fantasy doctor?

  • Sam

    Great article fantasy doc!

    I agree with mostly everything except for Vince Carter. I’m not a real big fan of him… for anything. For where he was picked in a lot of drafts, I can safely assume he will not have the “good production” that most expect from this big name.

  • http://dimemag.com/category/fantasy-basketball/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @David_Brandon: To be perfectly honest, I have no idea!

  • David_Brandon

    man, you write back quick! lol i like you already. i would invite you to my league, but i dunno…you might not be ready for the comp. haha

    i’ve never drafted vince before, but the way he’s fallen in love w/ the J the past few years and knowing dwights on the block, i think he’s in for a really good year if he can stay healthy.