Weekend Wonder: Elton Brand posted averages of 30.5 points, 10.5 rebounds, one assist and two steals and two blocks in two games over the weekend. He shot 65 percent from the field, 87 percent from the charity stripe and one turnover during that stretch. Brand is off to a great start in February and has been a top-30 surprise so far this season. He’s quietly fulfilling the “comeback” tags many placed on him heading into 2010-11.
Lines for Discussion:
Dwyane Wade (2/4): 8-20 FG (40%), 5-7 FT (71%), 1 three, 22 Pts, 12 Reb, 10 Ast, 4 TO; Wade followed this up with a 28/8/8 line on Sunday, and has looked fine despite his ailing back. Injuries are always a concern for Wade, but his owners should know that by now. So far this season, Wade’s fantasy value has been weighed down by inferior averages in the points, assists and steals columns compared to last season’s marks.
Amir Johnson (2/4): 8-10 FG (80%), 3-3 FT (100%), 19 Pts, 12 Reb, 6 Ast, 3 Stl, 2 Blk; Johnson has been unleashed lately, as he’s averaging more than 38 minutes of playing time in his last three games. He might have a shorter leash once Reggie Evans returns, but for now Johnson is a must-start stud.
Anthony Morrow (2/4): 8-12 FG (67%), 3-3 FT (100%), 3 threes, 22 Pts, 4 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 TO; This was Morrow’s first start since returning from his hamstring injury. He’s a rich source of threes regardless of whether he sticks in the starting lineup or is relegated to his bench role again.
Vince Carter (2/4): 11-21 FG (52%), 5-7 FT (71%), 6 threes, 33 Pts, 6 Reb, 3 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk, 1 TO; This was Carter’s first game with 30+ points since Feb. 8, 2010. In other words, don’t expect this kind of output from VC too often. Sell high if you can.
Al Jefferson (2/4): 12-20 FG (60%), 4-4 FT (100%), 28 Pts, 10 Reb, 3 Blk; Jefferson has hit the 20-point mark in his last four games. He’s clearly in a groove, thanks in part to Paul Millsap‘s less-than-100-percent status, and is finally showing off the potential many owners saw on draft day.
Kobe Bryant (2/5): 10-22 FG (46%), 8-8 FT (100%), 4 threes, 32 Pts, 9 Reb, 5 Ast, 1 Blk, 1 TO; Bryant is back to being a fantasy stud lately. During the last two weeks, he’s averaged 30 points, 1.5 threes, 5.3 rebounds, 6.5 assists, one steal and 2.8 turnovers, while shooting 49 percent from the field and 90 percent from the free-throw line.
Aaron Brooks (2/5): 2-6 FG (33%), 2-2 FT (100%), 6 Pts, 2 Reb, 2 Ast, 3 TO; Brooks’ insufferable season has hit a new low: after walking off the court early in Saturday’s game, the struggling point guard has been suspended for tonight’s game. Brooks is clearly frustrated with his diminished role and minutes this season. He’s remains worth stashing if possible, but it’s unclear how this mess will be sorted out.
David Lee (2/5): 5-15 FG (33%), 3-6 FT (50%), 13 Pts, 4 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Blk, 1 TO; Lee has gone cold in his last three games. He’s amassed just 16 rebounds in that stretch. Buy low on him if you’re looking for a big man.
Amar’e Stoudemire (2/6): 17-21 FG (81%), 7-7 FT (100%), 41 Pts, 7 Reb, 4 Ast, 1 Stl, 4 Blk, 3 TO; Not bad for 36:27 of run. Stoudemire’s enthusiasm for rebounds has waned in the last couple weeks, but this game should curry some mercy from his owners.
Ryan Anderson (2/6): 5-10 FG (50%), 1-2 FT (50%), 1 three, 12 Pts, 7 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 TO; Anderson was white hot in January but his insertion into the starting lineup has been a failed experiment so far. He was bound to cool off eventually, but it was tough to foresee it happening this way. Anderson will heat up again but his best days are likely behind him.
Mike Miller: he’s finally putting up numbers worth noticing and has been a good source of threes and rebounds lately
Rudy Fernandez: he’s a hot-and-cold player but is a solid all-around asset when he’s hot
Paul George: the rookie continues to put up numbers across the board more often than not and deserves to be monitored in most leagues
Kirk Hinrich: he’s averaging 13.3 points, 1.7 threes, 2.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.7 steals so far in February
Greg Monroe: he’s still starting and is good for rebounds, field-goal percentage, steals, and even blocks lately
Kendrick Perkins: he started the last two games and has grabbed 35 rebounds in his last three
Ramon Sessions: he should be a decent starter until Mo Williams returns
Sam Young: he’s still a starter and has scored double-digit points in five of his last six games
Tiago Splitter: his 16/9 game on Friday isn’t too big a deal, but Splitter should get more minutes down the stretch
Christian Eyenga: besides his weak shooting percentages, Eyenga continues to put up good overall numbers
Dante Cunningham (eye): got elbowed in the eye/face Saturday, day-to-day
Yi Jianlian (ankle): day-to-day
Acie Law (wrist): day-to-day
Ty Lawson (knee): knee strain makes him day-to-day
Al Horford (back): says he’ll be ready for Tuesday
Martell Webster (back): day-to-day
Ronny Turiaf (ankle): day-to-day
Chris Andersen (knee): day-to-day
Louis Admundson (back): day-to-day
Jason Smith (illness): day-to-day
DeMarcus Cousins (hand): monitor his status
Manny Harris (knee): minutes will be limited
Jordan Farmar (back): targeting Wednesday for his return
Joakim Noah (thumb): remains on schedule to return after the All-Star break
Trevor Ariza (ankle): coach Monty Williams won’t rush him back, monitor his status
Jermaine O’Neal (knee): out 6-8 weeks after having surgery Friday
Jason Thompson (ankle): will return and start again Monday
Marquis Daniels (back): a spinal cord injury will take him out for at least a month
Aaron Brooks (suspension): will serve his one-game suspension tonight
Delonte West (wrist): expected to return on Feb. 22
Jameer Nelson (ribs): monitor his status
Andrei Kirilenko (ankle): hopes to play tonight
Marcus Camby (knee): plans on returning to practice Tuesday
Kyle Lowry should get all the minutes he can handle as the Rockets visit the Nuggets.
If you’ve been starting Samuel Dalembert lately, it might be time to push him back to your bench. Thompson will regain his starting gig as the Kings host the Jazz.
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.
Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.
Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.