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Courtside Seat: Lin is prime trade bait

Senior Fantasy Writer
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We interrupt Linsanity to bring you another topic facing Fantasy owners -- the NBA trade deadline. March 15 is just a month away, and several prominent players could be on the move, which will impact all Fantasy leagues.

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Here are five players who could be traded before the deadline, and where they end up could change their Fantasy value. If you know they are on the move, you might want to buy or sell in your league now before their value either improves or declines.

As for Linsanity, we'll address Jeremy Lin further down as we explain why he is someone to sell high before this phenomenon ends.

Dwight Howard, C, Magic
Key stats: 20.1 points, 15.1 rebounds, 2.1 blocks
Rumored destinations: Lakers, Nets, Knicks and Bulls
If traded his Fantasy value would: stay the same
Howard is going to remain a beast wherever he goes, but it would be interesting to see him play with someone like Kobe Bryant, who commands the ball. At least we know his rebounding would remain high. Going to the Nets might increase his value since he would likely have to do more scoring, but he would also see more double teams. A trade to the Knicks seems unlikely at this point, and the Bulls don't seem ready to blow up their roster to bring in Howard. We know Howard's list of trade partners is growing, but the Lakers and Nets seem the most likely.

Stephen Jackson, SG, Bucks
Key stats: 11.3 points, 3.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists
Rumored destinations: Clippers and Hornets
If traded his Fantasy value would: improve dramatically
Everyone knew Jackson and Scott Skiles wouldn't mix, and we've seen Jackson more on the bench than on the court. He needs to get out of Milwaukee as soon as possible, and going to the Clippers makes the most sense after losing Chauncey Billups (Achilles tendon). Jackson has scored at least 18.5 points in each of his past four seasons, and his scoring would rise in a new city. This is the time to trade for Jackson because he will only improve on a new roster, and it would be a shock to see him finish the season with the Bucks.

Chris Kaman, C, Hornets
Current stats: 10.9 points, 7.5 rebounds, 1.3 blocks
Rumored destinations: Pacers, Rockets, Heat and Bucks
If traded his Fantasy value would: decline
A Kaman-for-Jackson trade would help both players since Kaman could help replace the injured Andrew Bogut (ankle) in Milwaukee and remain a solid Fantasy option. A trade to the Pacers or Heat would hinder his value, and he might not benefit much if he goes to the Rockets. He's playing well now with the Hornets as they continue to showcase him, and he has four double-doubles in his past five games with seven blocks over that span. It might not be a bad thing if he remained in New Orleans, but we know the Hornets need to trade him, which will definitely happen.

Steve Nash, PG, Suns
Current stats: 14.6 points, 10.7 assists, 2.6 rebounds
Rumored destinations: Magic, Knicks and Trail Blazers
If traded his Fantasy value would: decline
Nash has been in the same system since 2004, and he has averaged a double-double in points and assists in all but one year. So a trade to the Knicks, to be reunited with Mike D'Antoni, would benefit Nash the most. However, following the emergence of Lin, that move is not likely to happen. CBSSports.com NBA Insider Ken Berger recently went on the Jim Rome radio show and mentioned Nash going to Orlando (with Howard staying). Berger said Nash running the Magic offense with all those 3-point shooters would be solid. Nash will still remain a quality Fantasy option wherever he goes, but his best value would be if he stays with the Suns.

Ramon Sessions, PG, Cavaliers
Current stats: 10.2 points, 5.7 assists, 3.2 rebounds
Rumored destination: Lakers
If traded his Fantasy value would: improve slightly
The good thing about Sessions is we've seen what he's been capable of doing as a starter since he has two double-doubles in points and assists in his past four games with 41 assists over that span in place of Kyrie Irving (concussion). He would likely start for the Lakers or play the majority of minutes at point guard, but I wouldn't get overexcited about that. The Lakers don't have a need for a ton of production at point guard with Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum. Still, the increased minutes would help his value, and he is someone to target in trade now.

Each week we will take a look at a variety of topics around the NBA. We will look at guys to trade, trade for, add off the waiver wire and also answer some of your social media questions, among other things. It's our CBSSports.com potpourri look at Fantasy Basketball.

Sell-high candidates

Brandon Jennings, PG, Bucks
Why you should trade him: Jennings has struggled of late. In his past five games he is averaging 14.4 points, 4.8 assists and 3.6 rebounds while shooting 31.2 percent from the field. Those stats are down from his season averages, and he could be trending in the wrong direction. You might want to sell him now in case this continues.

DeAndre Jordan, C, Clippers
Why you should trade him: Jordan has been a serviceable No. 2 center for most of the season, but his value is on the decline. He has one double-double in his past six games, and he has just one game with more than 24 minutes over that span. He is losing playing time to Kenyon Martin, and the Clippers will likely continue to give Martin an increased opportunity.

Jeremy Lin, PG, Knicks
Why you should trade him: We all know Lin has been awesome. In his past five games, he is averaging 23.6 points, 9.8 assists and 4.2 rebounds. But you have to be concerned if he can keep this up, especially once Carmelo Anthony (groin) returns. The smart play is to trade him now while his value is at an all-time high. You can probably get something great in return.

Tony Parker, PG, Spurs
Why you should trade him: Parker is having an amazing season at 19.0 points and a career-high 7.8 assists, but with Manu Ginobili back after missing 22 games with a broken hand you will see Parker's production decline. In the first two games since Ginobili returned, Parker averaged 13.0 points and 6.0 assists, and he might continue to suffer going forward.

Kemba Walker, SG, Bobcats
Why you should trade him: Walker has filled in admirably in place of D.J. Augustin (toe) and Gerald Henderson (hamstring), but Augustin is back now. Augustin's return is expected to put Walker on the bench, and Corey Maggette is also healthy. Walker will still get plenty of playing time, but he won't average 15.2 points like he's done to start February.

Buy-low candidates

Carmelo Anthony, SF, Knicks
Why you should trade for him: Fantasy owners are sprinting from Anthony because of Lin's explosion on the scene, but let's keep things in perspective. Anthony is still averaging 22.3 points, 6.0 rebounds and 4.2 assists in a down year. If you can find an owner willing to unload him for the right price then acquire him now because when healthy he will produce.

Jamal Crawford, SG, Trail Blazers
Why you should trade for him: Crawford has scored at least 17 points and dished out five assists in four of his past six games. He is seeing increased playing time with Raymond Felton struggling, and Crawford will continue to improve unless Portland makes a trade for someone like Nash. We like Crawford to keep getting better as the season goes on.

Zach Randolph, PF, Grizzlies
Why you should trade for him: Randolph has been out with a knee injury, but he is expected to return in early March. He will be a great addition to a Fantasy playoff run, especially if he gets close to 100 percent. When healthy, Randolph is capable of averaging at least 20 points and 10 rebounds, which is something he's done each of the past three seasons.

Derrick Rose, PG, Bulls
Why you should trade for him: Rose is dealing with a back injury, which has hampered him of late and caused him to miss the past three games. His Fantasy owners are frustrated, which is the perfect time to strike. Prior to sitting out, Rose averaged 29.0 points, 13.0 assists and 5.5 rebounds in two games, and he should be a beast when he returns at 100 percent.

Greivis Vasquez, PG, Hornets
Why you should trade for him: Jarrett Jack (knee) should return soon, but that shouldn't matter to Vasquez now that Eric Gordon (knee) is out for another six weeks. Vasquez will continue to get plenty of playing time, and he is worth buying now. We've seen what Vasquez can do when he gets an opportunity, and you can probably trade for him for a low price.

Free agent watch

Here are five guys I am looking at in my leagues:

Tristan Thompson, PF, Cavaliers
Owned: 44 percent of leagues

Carlos Delfino, SG, Bucks
Owned: 43 percent of leagues

C.J. Watson, PG, Bulls
Owned: 32 percent of leagues

J.R. Smith, SG, free agent
Owned: 29 percent of leagues

Chris Wilcox, PF, Celtics
Owned: 4 percent of leagues

Thompson should get an increased look with Anderson Varejao (wrist) out, and he is someone to put on your radar in case he starts to play well. Delfino has been on a tear of late with 17 3-pointers in his past five games, and his playing time has been consistent at 30 minutes per game over that span. Watson is taking advantage of Rose being out, and Wilcox should benefit with Brandon Bass (knee) out. Smith and Wilson Chandler (35 percent ownership) are looking for new teams after playing in China and they could be valuable additions in the right city.

Social media corner

@Matt Salter on Twitter wants to know: I need a center or forward and available are Trevor Booker, Kaman, Corey Brewer, Trevor Ariza and Gustavo Ayon.

I'd roll with Kaman since he's playing well now, especially with Emeka Okafor (knee) banged up, and he could see an increase in value if he's traded. Ariza is also solid, and Booker has played well with Andray Blatche (calf) out. But Kaman has the most upside of this group.

@nate mcwilliams on Twitter wants to know: Would you rather have Drew Gooden or Luis Scola for the rest of the year?

Gooden is the better option because he has been on a tear since Bogut went down. Scola has played well at times, but he's been more of a bust this season than a star. Gooden could lose value if Bogut returns early or the Bucks add someone via trade, but ride him now while he's hot.

Stay in touch with the most passionate Fantasy staff in the business by following us via Twitter @CBSFantasyNews . You can also follow Jamey at @JameyEisenberg and on Facebook .

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Player News
Jazz hand 10-day contracts to Bryce Cotton, Jarrelle Benimon
by Al Melchior | Data Analyst
(12:45 pm ET) The Jazz signed guard Bryce Cotton and forward Jarrelle Benimon to 10-day contracts on Friday, per the team's official website.

Benimon was playing with the NBA D-League's Idaho Stampede before signing his deal with the Jazz. Cotton's contract with the Jazz is his second 10-day deal. Utah will choose to sign him for the remainder of the season, or part ways with the guard once his second 10-day contract expires.


Rockets send Nick Johnson back to Rio Grande Vipers
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:38 pm ET) The Rockets assigned guard Nick Johnson to the Rio Grande Vipers of the NBA D-League, according to NBA.com. Johnson, 22, has played in 18 NBA games this season and has averages of 3.1 points and 1.3 rebounds per contest.

Pelicans' Ryan Anderson (MCL sprain) uncertain of timetable on his return
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:36 pm ET) Pelicans forward Ryan Anderson told reporters there is no set timetable on his return from a sprained MCL in his right knee, per the team's official website.

"Recovery has been a process. I'm really working a lot on getting mobility back, just walking," Anderson said. "The past week, I've made big strides, as far as getting out of a big knee brace. My flexibility is a lot better, as far as rotation. I haven't tried anything on the court yet. We're still doing some pool work and I did stuff on the arc trainer, which is kind of a treadmill that takes some of the weight off your body. It's tough, but it's something I have to do to get better."

Anderson suffered the injury Feb. 21 against the Heat, and was given a two-to-four-week timetable for return. He was averaging 14.6 points per contest before the injury.

"It's really when my body feels good," Anderson said of his eventual return. "The strength work is going to be a part of it the next few weeks, building back up. Obviously I want to get back as soon as I can."


Heat list Deng, Andersen, Chalmers questionable at Washington
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:28 pm ET) The Heat listed Luol Deng, Chris Andersen and Mario Chalmers all questionable for Friday's contest against the Wizards in Washington, per the team's official website.

Deng is dealing with a deep thigh bruise, while Chalmers and Andersen are both dealing with what the Heat are calling "general soreness."

Miami is a 5-point underdog at Washington, per VegasInsider.com.


Celtics' Avery Bradley in danger of missing three-game road trip
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:23 pm ET) Celtics guard Avery Bradley is unlikely to accompany the team during their three-game road trip, which starts Friday against New Orleans and ends Monday in Miami, coach Brad Stevens told reporters, per the team's official website.

Bradley sprained his left elbow during Wednesday’s contest, but he was able to play 36 minutes and score 13 points. Isaiah Thomas will see an increase in minutes while Bradley remains sidelined during Boston's road trip.

"He had a badly sprained left elbow," Stevens said. "He hyperextended it."


Raptors guard Kyle Lowry will dress against Hornets
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(12:16 pm ET) Raptors guard Kyle Lowry participated in morning shootaround and will dress Friday night against the Hornets, according to the team's official website.

Lowry missed the last three games in order to rest a variety of injuries. He is averaging 18.0 points, 7.0 assists and 1.5 steals while shooting 41.4 percent from the field through 58 games. 

Toronto is a 1-point favorite on the road against Charlotte, per VegasInsider.com.


Report: Chris Johnson to sign 10-day deal with Bucks
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(11:02 am ET) The Bucks will sign guard/forward Chris Johnson to a 10-day contract, according to Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski on Friday.

Johnson, 24, was not brought back by the Jazz after signing a 10-day deal with them in February. He is averaging 6.2 points while shooting 34.8 percent from the field in 11 games this season.


Magic's Borrego: Evan Fournier, Luke Ridnour uncertain vs. Kings
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10:28 am ET) Magic coach James Borrego told reporters that he's unsure if Evan Fournier and Luke Ridnour will be available for Friday's game vs. the Kings, per the Orlando Sentinel. Fournier has missed three consecutive games with a a hip injury, while Ridnour has missed one game with a hamstring issue.

Hornets' Kemba Walker could return as early as Wednesday
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10:02 am ET) Hornets coach Steve Clifford is expecting guard Kemba Walker back in the starting lineup at some point during Charlotte's three-game homestand, which could come as early as Wednesday against the Kings, according to the Charlotte Observer.

Walker underwent surgery to repair a torn lateral meniscus in his left knee on Jan. 28, and was cleared Wednesday to resume basketball activities. Charlotte traded for Mo Williams before the deadline to fill in for Walker. Now Walker is looking forward to playing with Williams once he's back from injury.

"He makes so many plays," Walker said. "He's so smart; he knows when to shoot and when to pass. You can see it in his numbers; he's had some huge assist games."


Hornets' Clifford on Stephenson: Expectations were out of whack
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(9:38 am ET) When asked about guard Lance Stephenson's recent struggles, Hornets coach Steve Clifford said that Stephenson is a victim of unrealistic expectations, per Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated.

"A lot of this is totally off base among basketball people," Clifford said. "He's [24] years old. He'd played for one coach in one offense. This is Lance's first time playing with new guys. His attitude has been fine. The expectations were a little out of whack."

Stephenson signed a three-year, $27 million deal to play for the Hornets in the offseason, after a breakout campaign with the Pacers. Since joining Charlotte, his scoring(8.6 points per game) field goal percentage (36.6 percent) and three-point percentage (14.8 percent) have all taken a hit in his new role with the second unit.


 
 
 
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