Weekend Wonder: Kyle Lowry averaged 29.0 points, 7.5 rebounds, 9.0 assists, 1.5 steals and 3.0 threes in two games over the weekend. He shot 49 percent from the field and 92 percent from the free-throw line in that stretch. For the season, Lowry has maintained top three fantasy value, far exceeding even the loftiest expectations. Don’t be too surprised if he finished the 2011-12 NBA season with top 15 overall value.
Lines for Discussion:
Samuel Dalembert (1/13): 9-11 FG (82%), 3-4 FT (75%), 21 Pts, 16 Reb, 1 Stl, 4 Blk, 1 TO; Since starting for the Rockets, Dalembert has averaged 8.2 points, 9.4 rebounds, 1.2 steals and 1.8 blocks per game, while shooting 61 percent from the floor and 88 percent from the free-throw line. Those are top 20 numbers.
MarShon Brooks (1/13): 8-15 FG (53%), 2-3 FT (67%), 2 threes, 20 Pts, 5 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl, 1 Blk, 2 TO; The rookie continues to thrive on that Nets roster. The rookie wall looms, but owners should feel bold about starting Brooks for now.
Ricky Rubio (1/14): 7-15 FG (47%), 2-2 FT (100%), 2 threes, 18 Pts, 4 Reb, 12 Ast, 5 Stl, 4 TO; He’s finally starting for the Timberwolves, which can only help his already strong fantasy value. For the season, Rubio is putting up top 45 averages.
JaVale McGee (1/14): 11-13 FG (85%), 1-4 FT (25%), 23 Pts, 18 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 5 Blk, 2 TO; McGee is finally breaking out this season, averaging 12.3 points, 10.1 rebounds, 0.9 steals and 3.2 blocks per game. That last number leads the league. He’s returning top 30 value so far this season, which makes for a handsome return on investment for owners who drafted him in rounds 5-6.
Boris Diaw (1/14): 3-4 FG (75%), 2-2 FT (100%), 1 three, 9 Pts, 4 Reb, 3 Ast, 4 TO; For the first time since he joined the Bobcats, Diaw didn’t start. This situation isn’t too surprising, given his recent woes and poor conditioning. For fantasy owners, this is a bummer after his white-hot start to the season. He should still be stashed on rosters until we find out how this ends – ideally with regaining a starting job, an emergence as a productive sixth man or a trade.
Jeff Teague (1/14): 7-15 FG (47%), 5-6 FT (83%), 1 three, 20 Pts, 3 Reb, 10 Ast, 3 Stl, 1 Blk, 6 TO; Teague has been a solid point guard for his owners, partly thanks to his 2.1 steals per game. He’s doing just about what was expected of him heading into this season and should continue rolling along, though inconsistency will plague his game-to-game production.
Joe Johnson (1/14): 8-20 FG (40%), 6-7 FT (86%), 3 threes, 25 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast; Johnson has been putting up better-rounded lines in January than he was in December, averaging 18.6 points, 4.0 rebounds, 4.3 assists, a steal and 1.9 threes per game. He still struggles with his accuracy from the floor but remains a helpful fantasy asset.
Kobe Bryant (1/14): 14-28 FG (50%), 12-14 FT (86%), 2 threes, 42 Pts, 7 Reb, 4 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk, 2 TO; That’s four straight games with 40+ points for Kobe. It’s hard to doubt his ability to maintain this top 10 pace at this point, but there’s still good reason to think about selling him while he’s this hot.
David Lee (1/15): 10-12 FG (83%), 4-5 FT (80%), 24 Pts, 6 Reb, 3 Ast, 2 Blk, 2 TO; This snapped a six-game streak of double-doubles for Lee, who’s averaging top 45 numbers so far this season.
Marcin Gortat (1/15): 11-20 FG (55%), 2-4 FT (50%), 24 Pts, 15 Reb, 1 Blk, 2 TO; Since Jan. 4, Gortat has averaged 18.0 points, 10.3 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.4 steals and 1.6 blocks per game, while shooting 66 percent from the field and 50 percent from the free-throw line. Those are top 12 numbers right there. Kudos to owners who had the foresight and wisdom to ride out his stormy start to the season.
Jodie Meeks: he’s a roller coaster, but if you need threes, Meeks is worth a look
Jonas Jerebko: he’s unreliable at this point but could be worth stashing if you have room
Byron Mullens: the dude’s been on fire lately and should be scooped up if you need a reliable center who scores and shoots well
Leandro Barbosa: he’s hit double-digit points in his last five games
Kawhi Leonard: he continues to start and is worth a gamble so long as Manu Ginobili’s out
Tiago Splitter: while far from reliable, Splitter is showing signs of promise lately, especially if you need a big man who block a shot or two per game
Ronnie Price: his big game Friday should alert owners that Price is the right guy to own whenever Steve Nash sits out
Rudy Fernandez: he got hurt last night but has been a great all-around asset lately
Ivan Johnson: he’s picking up steam and is worth a look if you need some points and boards
Jason Smith: he notched 15/10 along with a steal and three blocks Saturday, and is worth monitoring for now
Russell Westbrook (ankle): rolled his left ankle Saturday but returned; monitor his status
Courtney Lee (calf): could return tonight
Andrew Bogut (concussion): practiced Sunday and should be fine for tonight
Tracy McGrady (back): hopes to play tonight
Chris Wilcox (calf): will miss another 2-3 games
D.J. White (personal): back with the team
Chris Paul (hamstring): MRI came back negative; could play tonight
Steve Blake (ribs): out 2-4 weeks
Mike Miller (hernia): could return Tuesday
Beno Udrih (shoulder): game-time decision tonight
Carmelo Anthony (ankle): day-to-day
Andrea Bargnani (calf): day-to-day
Andray Blatche (shoulder): his shoulder will require extensive rehab; day-to-day
Brian Cook (ankle): day-to-day
Reggie Jackson (knee): hoping to play tonight
Mo Williams (foot): day-to-day
Evan Turner (quad): day-to-day
James Johnson (ankle): day-to-day
Dwyane Wade (ankle): no timetable for his return; day-to-day
Shawne Williams (foot, leg): day-to-day
Steve Nash (back, quad): monitor his status
DeSagana Diop (knee): will be available for Tuesday’s game
Derrick Favors (ankle): didn’t finish Sunday’s game; day-to-day
Josh Howard (quad): day-to-day
Rudy Fernandez (Achilles): day-to-day
Damien Wilkins (personal): day-to-day
Will Bynum (foot): day-to-day
Chauncey Billups (back): expected to play tonight
Gary Neal (quad): left Sunday’s game early; day-to-day
Malcolm Thomas (illness): day-to-day
Corey Maggette (hamstring): still can’t run or jump; no timetable for his return
Richard Hamilton (groin): could be ready by the end of the week
Charlie Villanueva (ankle): day-to-day
Baron Davis (back): might return to practice next week
Quentin Richardson (ankle): will be available tonight
Jason Richardson (knee): probably out tonight
Marcus Camby (ankle): out tonight
Expect another big game from Kobe, who will look to exact vengeance against the visiting Mavs.
If ‘Melo can’t go for the Knicks tonight, Bill Walker could get another start, but he would only be a candidate for a spot start in deeper leagues.
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.