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Courtside Seat: Who makes the Fantasy All-Star team?

Senior Fantasy Writer
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The All-Star game is upon us this weekend and we should see the usual brand of basketball with plenty of dunks and a lack of defense. For Fantasy owners, it's a couple of days off from scouring box scores and trying to find the next Jeremy Lin or Nikola Pekovic.

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Lin and Pekovic have been the best free agent additions to start the season, but they are not All-Star players -- at least not yet. The Fantasy All-Stars to this point in the year also differ slightly from the NBA version.

In looking at Average Draft Position and comparing it to a variety of leagues – total points, average and an eight-category format – we've found the Fantasy All-Star teams for each conference. We kept the same requirements for the starters with two forwards, two guards and one center. But in our version, Josh Smith and Kyle Lowry won't be getting snubbed.

Eastern Conference All-Stars:

Starters
LeBron James, SF, Heat
Carmelo Anthony, SF, Knicks
Derrick Rose, PG, Bulls
Dwyane Wade, SG, Heat
Dwight Howard, C, Magic

Reserves
Chris Bosh, PF, Heat
Luol Deng, SF, Bulls
Roy Hibbert, C, Pacers
Andre Iguodala, SF, Sixers
Paul Pierce, SF, Celtics
Rajon Rondo, PG, Celtics
Deron Williams, PG, Nets

Western Conference All-Stars:

Starters
Kevin Durant, SF, Thunder
Blake Griffin, PF, Clippers
Chris Paul, PG, Clippers
Kobe Bryant, SG, Lakers
Andrew Bynum, C, Lakers

Reserves
LaMarcus Aldridge, PF, Trail Blazers
Marc Gasol, C, Grizzlies
Kevin Love, PF, Timberwolves
Steve Nash, PG, Suns
Dirk Nowitzki, PF, Mavericks
Tony Parker, PG, Spurs
Russell Westbrook, PG, Thunder

Eastern Conference Fantasy All-Stars:

Starters
LeBron James, SF, Heat
Josh Smith, SF, Hawks
Deron Williams, PG, Nets
Brandon Jennings, PG, Bucks
Dwight Howard, C, Magic

Reserves
Ryan Anderson, PF, Magic
Jose Calderon, PG, Raptors
Andre Iguodala, SF, Sixers
Greg Monroe, C, Pistons
Derrick Rose, PG, Bulls
Dwyane Wade, SG, Heat
John Wall, PG, Wizards

Roster difference: Smith should have replaced the injured Joe Johnson (knee) for the real All-Star game since he is having an outstanding season. He is a Top 5 player overall in an eight-category league and he has rewarded all owners who drafted him in Round 3. Jennings also is having a fantastic start to the season, but he is expected to falter and is a sell-high candidate. Calderon is another sell-high candidate just based on his injury history, but he's averaging close to a double-double and shoots a high percentage from the field and foul line. Monroe has been the second-best center in the East, and Anderson is the best 3-point shooter in the NBA. Wall, surprisingly, is a Top 10 player in total points, a Top 10 point guard in an eight-category league and a Top 10 guard in an average format.

Western Conference Fantasy All-Stars:

Starters
Kevin Durant, SF, Thunder
Kevin Love, PF, Timberwolves
Kobe Bryant, SG, Lakers
Kyle Lowry, PG, Rockets
Marc Gasol, C, Grizzlies

Reserves
LaMarcus Aldridge, PF, Trail Blazers
Chris Paul, PG, Clippers
Pau Gasol, PF, Lakers
Blake Griffin, PF, Clippers
Tony Parker, PG, Spurs
Ricky Rubio, PG, Timberwolves
Russell Westbrook, PG, Thunder

Roster difference: Lowry just missed being a Top 5 overall player in an eight-category league, and he was a steal for Fantasy owners in Round 5. For him to not make the real All-Star team was a travesty. Rubio might be the steal of all Fantasy drafts since he was selected in Round 9 on average but is a Top 12 player in an eight-category league. Marc Gasol, thanks to Zach Randolph (knee) being injured, has been the best center in the West, but his brother also deserves All-Star consideration. Even though Bryant recently said Pau Gasol has been bothered by trade rumors he is still a Top 20 player in all formats and a better Fantasy option than Bynum. One Fantasy snub in the West is Marcin Gortat, who is playing great for his value (Round 7), but he just missed the list by comparison to the other players.

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.

Anderson going forward

Anderson has been one of the best Draft Day steals this year. He was the No. 51 forward drafted in Round 11, but he is having a career season at 16.3 points and 7.4 rebounds with 97 made 3-pointers.

Fantasy owners want to know if he can keep this up, and Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said in an interview Sunday in Miami that he is curious of that himself.

"We knew he was a good player," Van Gundy said. "Did I think he would be capable of averaging close to 17 points and seven rebounds? No, probably not. We knew he could shoot the ball. He's still got a long way to go. There are a lot of things he still needs to do better. The other challenge for him will be, as the season goes on, teams will adjust. Ryan will have that at some point and he'll have to adjust. But he's had a good start."

The only way we see Anderson taking a dive in Fantasy value is if Howard is traded. Anderson benefits from teams doubling down on Howard, leaving him open on the perimeter. But as long as Howard remains with the Magic we should continue to see Anderson thrive.

Free agent watch

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

Gustavo Ayon, PF, Hornets
Owned: 51 percent of leagues

Tristan Thompson, PF, Cavaliers
Owned: 49 percent of leagues

Corey Brewer, SF, Nuggets
Owned: 45 percent of leagues

Marco Belinelli, SG, Hornets
Owned: 36 percent of leagues

Kenneth Faried, PF, Nuggets
Owned: 24 percent of leagues

Thompson was mentioned here last week with Anderson Varejao (wrist) out, and he has responded with two double-doubles in his past three games. Ayon has taken advantage of Emeka Okafor (knee) being out, and he is averaging 9.4 points, 9.8 rebounds and 1.6 steals in his past five games. Belinelli also has thrived of late with 13 3-pointers in his past five outings and he is averaging 16.6 points over that span. His value would increase if he did more than just score. Brewer has helped the Nuggets with Danilo Gallinari (ankle) out and he is averaging 13.8 points, 5.0 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 2.2 steals in his past five games. And Faried has also helped the Nuggets with Nene (calf) out with two double-doubles in his past four games.

Social media corner

@Matt_Johnson22 on Twitter wants to know: I have Jarrett Jack and Greivis Vasquez on my team and need to drop one for roster space. Who should I stick with on my team?

It's pretty clear after this past week that Jack is the better Fantasy option when healthy. Vasquez still retains plenty of value with Eric Gordon (knee) out, but Jack has more upside even coming off the bench. If you have to pick one, go with Jack.

@detroitman606 on Twitter wants to know: Would you make the following trade: Lowry and Iguodala for Rose and Anderson?

In a category-based league I would stick with Lowry and Iguodala because they fill up the stat sheet as well as anyone. Anderson has been great and Rose will rebound now that his back is healthy, but Lowry and Iguodala should continue to play well. Now, in a total points league, I would rather have Rose and Anderson because of Rose's upside.

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
Timberwolves' Andrew Wiggins out Tuesday, likely out Wednesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:57 am ET) Timberwolves guard Andrew Wiggins didn't play Tuesday and will likely miss Wednesday's game as well after taking a hard fall Sunday, the Star Tribune reports. The issue appears to be minor in nature, and the rookie is day-to-day moving forward.

Jazz C Enes Kanter explodes for 27 points in preseason win Tuesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:05 am ET) Jazz center Enes Kanter scored a team-high 27 points on 12-of-17 shooting, including 2-for-2 shooting from downtown, while recording seven rebounds, three assists and one block in his team's 105-91 preseason win over the Thunder Tuesday.

Kanter played 29 minutes en route to his best performance of the preseason, as all five starters logged at least 28 minutes of action in the win. Kanter has a chance to build upon his career-best performance last season, in which he averaged 12.3 points and 7.5 rebounds per game. The Jazz open the regular season at home against the Rockets on Oct. 29.


Heat SG Dwyane Wade scores 26 points in preseason win Tuesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Heat shooting guard Dwyane Wade scored 26 points on 11-of-17 shooting while adding six assists, two rebounds and one block in 29 minutes of action during Tuesday's 90-85 preseason win over the Rockets.

Wade is in line to be the team's top scoring option on a nightly basis in the Heat's post-LeBron era, as long as he can stay healthy. Before dropping 26 Friday, his highest scoring mark in six preseason games had been 16 points. Wade and the Heat open the regular season at home against the Wizards on Oct. 29.


Pacers G George Hill exits game with knee contusion
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Pacers guard George Hill left Tuesday's preseason game against the Timberwolves with a left knee contusion and will not return. Hill is likely day-to-day with the bruise, though he might take it easy over the next week in hopes of being 100 percent for the regular-season opener.

Kerr: 'Highly doubtful' Warriors' Shaun Livingston plays in opener
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Warriors coach Steve Kerr said that it's "highly doubtful" guard Shaun Livingston (toe) plays in the season opener next Wednesday, Yahoo! Sports reports.

Livingston had offseason toe surgery and was reported to be targeting a return by the regular-season opener, but it appears he won't reach that goal. He averaged 8.3 points per game on 48.3 percent shooting for Brooklyn last season.


Report: Magic, Nikola Vucevic agree to four-year extension
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) The Magic and center Nikola Vucevic have agreed to a four-year, $53-million extension, Yahoo! Sports reports.

Vucevic posted a career-best 14.2 points per game last season while appearing in 57 games. He has shot 50.4 percent from the field in three seasons as a professional, the last two with Orlando.


Brooks: Thunder G Reggie Jackson expected to play in opener
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Thunder coach Scotty Brooks expects guard Reggie Jackson (wrist) to be ready for the regular-season opener, The Oklahoman reports. Jackson "didn't feel comfortable" after his Monday workout as he continues to recover from a wrist injury suffered earlier in the month.

MRI confirms sprained thumb for Bulls SG Jimmy Butler
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) An MRI has confirmed that Bulls shooting guard Jimmy Butler is dealing with a sprained thumb, the Chicago Tribune reports.

Butler is going to sit out practice this week as well as the team's preseason finale Friday before being re-evaluated this weekend. The Bulls open the season Oct. 29 on the road against the Knicks.


Lakers PG Jeremy Lin to return to action Tuesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Lakers point guard Jeremy Lin will return to preseason action Tuesday, he announced.

"[A]nkles are finally feeling better ... excited to get back on the court tonight!" Lin said Tuesday.

Lin has been dealing with an ankle sprain but appears to be on track to be ready for the regular season.


Williams: Jimmer Fredette to play scoring role off Pelicans bench
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/21/2014) Pelicans coach Monty Williams indicated that he plans to have guard Jimmer Fredette in a scoring role during the regular season, The Times Picayune reports.

"You are trying to take advantage of Jimmer’s ability to score," Williams said. "When he plays point, they pressure him full court, so you’re getting into your offense later than you want to."

Fredette has played on and off the ball during the preseason, filling the same role as guard Austin Rivers. Tyreke Evans should be the ball handler while on the court with either Fredette or Rivers, but when Evans hits the bench, Rivers will take the point over Fredette, who should be free to focus on scoring.


 
 
 
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