Fantasy Fix: Surprises among top 20 NBA players
December 3, 2008
The NBA season is six weeks old, and there are a few surprises among the top 20 players in the Yahoo game. When I glanced at the top 20 players in the Yahoo game today, I noticed a 14-year veteran, a rookie, a possible changing of the guard and a player who just might get the Comeback Player of the Year Award.
The first thing I noticed was that Jason Kidd, a 14-year NBA veteran, is ranked seventh overall at this point in the season. Kidd is close to averaging a triple double on the season with 10.2 points per game, 7.2 rebounds and 8.6 assists. The only other time a player averaged a triple double for an entire season was Oscar Robertson, when he did it with 30.8 points, 11.4 assists and 12.5 rebounds per game in the 1961-62 season with the Cincinnati Royals.
The next thing I noticed was that Brandon Roy, ranked No. 12, is one spot higher than Kobe Bryant. Roy and Bryant’s numbers are nearly identical when comparing overall totals. Bryant may average more points per game (24.4) than Roy (20.9), but Roy has scored more points (377) to Kobe’s (366). Not a big difference between the two, but it shows how good Roy truly is when compared with an elite guard.
Rookies in the NBA don’t always make an immediate impact, but O.J. Mayo has done just that. He’s already a team leader on the Memphis Grizzlies, along with Rudy Gay, and he’s ranked higher than any other rookie in the league at 17. He’s averaging very close to 22 points a game, five rebounds and two assists a game. Once his three point shot comes into play a little more, look for 25 points a game.
After playing only 16 games all of last year, Nene Hilario of the Denver Nuggets is averaging 15 points, seven rebounds, one assist, a steal and a block per game. This great performance has vaulted him to ninth in the Yahoo game and is the highest that he ever has been ranked since he entered the league in 2002. I smell a Comeback Player of the Year Award for Nene come springtime.
All the players mentioned next are owned in less than 40 percent of Yahoo leagues right now and are ready for starting gigs on most fantasy squads.
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Rodney Stuckey, guard, Detroit Pistons – Last 3 games: 13.5 points, 5.5 assists, 4 rebounds, and 2 steals
Trevor Ariza, forward, Los Angeles Lakers – Last 3 games: 12 pts, 4 assists, 6 rebounds, 1 steal and 1 block
Chris Wilcox, center, Oklahoma City Thunder – Last 3 games: 13 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal
Craig resident and Fantasy Fix columnist Chris Gingrich can be reached at email@example.com