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Rotisserie specials for Week 8

by | Fantasy Writer
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As many Fantasy owners fill up shopping lists with the holidays right around the corner, some may be asking for help regarding their respective Fantasy teams.

With all the injuries that have piled up and coaches continuing to fine-tune their rotations, keeping track of who to start and sit can be quite a challenge.

Fortunately, we have kept an eye on all the action here at CBSSports.com and have compiled our weekly installment of the five players who are worth a look in Roto formats and the five players who should be avoided for the upcoming scoring period. As always, we recommend Fantasy owners do their own homework but to still use our list as a guide when setting lineups for Fantasy Week 8 (Dec. 17-23).

Find a place for 'em

Jose Calderon, G, Raptors (@CLE, DET, ORL): Last week we listed Calderon as a sit as he had struggled to produce on a consistent basis in his reserve role. However, Kyle Lowry was injured in Toronto's first game last week, which allowed Calderon to see starters' minutes and produce like one as well. The veteran continues to thrive when inserted into the starting lineup as he is averaging 12.7 points, 11.3 assists and 3.4 rebounds in the nine games he has started this season compared to the 8.1 points, 4.1 assists and 1.8 rebounds he puts up when coming off the bench. With Lowry now out for at least the next 10 days, Calderon will once again be handed over the reins to Toronto's offense and should be able to flirt with a double-double some nights with the Cavaliers, Pistons and Magic on the schedule. Make sure to get Calderon active in all formats this week. (owned in 86 percent of leagues)

Jarrett Jack, G, Warriors (NO, @SAC, CHA, LAL): After going through a bit of a lull a few weeks ago, Jack has gotten himself back on track. He has scored in double figures in seven of his last nine games and is averaging 13.3 points, 5.3 assists and 3.9 rebounds per contest to go along with 1.1 steals. He is shooting 50 percent from downtown during his hot stretch and has logged at least 30 minutes in five of his last six contests as coach Mark Jackson has been using him at point guard with Stephen Curry sliding over to the two-spot and Klay Thompson moving to small forward. The moves have resulted in Golden State playing its best ball in years, so there is really no reason for Jackson to switch things back up. While Jack doesn't excel in any one particular category, his all-around production coupled with his recent hot shooting from downtown has made him a very productive low-end Rotisserie option over the past few weeks. Fantasy owners in those formats should continue to roll with Jack heading into Week 8. (owned in 66 percent of leagues)

Matt Barnes, F, Clippers (@DET, NO, SAC, @PHO): Rather quietly, Barnes has turned in a bounce-back campaign with the Clippers this season and has been heating up over the past few weeks. The 32-year-old has scored in double figures in seven of his last nine games and is averaging 13 points over that span to go along with 4.2 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.4 steals. He is shooting 59 percent from the field during his run while logging 25 minutes per game, mostly at small forward. Barnes' defensive prowess -- as well as his ability to get up and down the floor -- has earned him extra playing time in coach Vinny Del Negro's rotation and he should be able to keep things rolling this week with the Pistons, Suns, and Kings on the schedule -- all three of those teams rank near the bottom of the pack in opposition field-goal percentage as well as points allowed. Fantasy owners should continue to ride Barnes' hot hand in Week 8. (owned in 20 percent of leagues)

Bismack Biyombo, F, Bobcats (@LAL, @PHO, @GS, @DEN): While the losses continue to mount in Charlotte, the one thing that has started to increase has been Biyombo's playing time. The 20-year-old, who is averaging 24.6 minutes on the season, has seen around 32 minutes over his last seven games. Obviously more playing time usually leads to more production and Biyombo's case is no exception. The second-year man from Congo is averaging 6.2 points and 8.6 rebounds over his last seven contests and is shooting 53 percent from the field over that stretch. He is also putting up 1.9 blocks during his run and should be able to at least maintain his production this week as coach Mike Dunlap will need Biyombo's length to combat a couple of large frontcourts in the Lakers and Denver. While Biyombo's offense continues to be extremely inconsistent, he has been an excellent source of rebounds and blocks for most owners in Rotisserie formats. With some poor defensive teams on the docket combined with his recent strong play, owners should consider rolling with Biyombo this week. (owned in 34 percent of leagues)

Nikola Vucevic, C, Magic (MIN, WAS, @TOR, UTA): After going through a bit of a lull a few weeks back, Vucevic has gotten himself back on track of late. The 22-year-old continues to flex his muscle on the boards as he has posted double-digit rebounds during six of his last nine games and is averaging 9.1 rebounds over that stretch. He has shown some improvement in his offensive game as well, putting up 10.6 points per contest over his recent board streak and is also giving Fantasy owners over a block per game on the year. While his offensive game very much remains a work in progress, Vucevic should at least be able to maintain or match his rebounding numbers this week. The Raptors, Timberwolves and Wizards all rank near the bottom of the pack in field-goal percentage and points scored this season and Vucevic pulled down 16 rebounds, six points and two blocks in his lone meeting against the Jazz this season. Leave him active in the majority of category-based formats this week. (owned in 83 percent of leagues)

Put 'em on your bench

Shannon Brown, G, Suns (SAC, CHA, @POR, LAC): Brown continues to earn starts at shooting guard for the Suns and has been able to keep his scoring up for the most part. He has scored in double figures in seven of his last eight contests and is averaging 13.6 points per game over that stretch. However, Brown's scoring has come at a price as he has not been very efficient at all. In fact, he is shooting just 37 percent from the field over his last eight contests and just 27 percent from downtown over that same span. While that may not matter to owners in Head-to-Head formats, Brown is actually doing more harm than good in some Rotisserie leagues. Because he doesn't offer much in the way of rebounds, assists or steals, Brown's poor shooting numbers have become a major liability to most owners in those formats. Even with somewhat of a favorable schedule on tap against the defensively challenged Bobcats, Kings and Trail Blazers, owners in category-based formats may want to sit Brown down until he starts making some shots with a bit more consistency. (owned in 34 percent of leagues)

Vince Carter, G, Mavericks (PHI, MIA, @MEM, @SA):. Carter has been his usual inconsistent self thus far this season as he continues to frustrate owners with his up-and-down production. While he can still be very useful to most owners during one of his upswings, he can be just as detrimental when he goes cold. Unfortunately for Fantasy owners, it appears the veteran is in the midst of another cold spell. Carter has failed to reach double figures in four of his last six games and is averaging just 8.4 points on 36.4 percent shooting from the field over that stretch. While Carter continues to see around 24 minutes per game most nights, he looks to have some tough matchups on tap this week. The 76ers and Grizzlies both rank in the top five in opposition field-goal percentage and points allowed while the Heat have finally started to flex its defensive force a bit in recent weeks. Fantasy owners may want to think about leaving Carter on the shelf until he heats back up again. (owned in 41 percent of leagues)

Carlos Delfino, F, Rockets (@NY, PHI, MEM): Delfino's first year in Houston has not gone as planned as he dealt with injuries and a major shooting slump in the early part of the season. The 30-year-old is shooting a putrid 34 percent from the field on the year and has been especially bad over his last few games. Delfino has made just 29 percent of his shots over his last five contests and is averaging 7.0 points and 2.6 rebounds over that stretch. While he continues to see around 25 minutes most nights, Delfino's poor shooting numbers have become a burden for owners in Rotisserie formats. With matchups against the Knicks, Grizzlies and 76ers -- who all rank in the top 10 in opposition field-goal percentage and points allowed -- on tap, it could be another long week for the seventh-year forward. Delfino should be able to bounce back eventually, it just may not be this week.

Brandon Bass, F, Celtics, (@CHI, CLE, MIL): After putting together a career campaign during his first year in Boston, Bass has not been nearly as productive in his second year with the Celtics. Despite continuing to see starts at power forward, Bass has only posted double-digit scoring totals in two of his last eight contests. He is averaging just 5.9 points per game on 46 percent shooting from the field over that stretch to go along with 5.4 rebounds. Bass' recent offensive slump has also forced coach Doc Rivers to tweak his rotation late in games, as Bass is seeing around 25 minutes per game over his recent cold stretch after averaging close to 30 over his first 15 games. While Bass does get to face the defensively challenged Cavs this week, owners should seek other options until Bass gets himself back on track. (owned in 45 percent of leagues)

Jonas Valanciunas, C, Raptors, (@CLE, DET, ORL): Valanciunas got off to a very nice start this season and looked primed to make a major impact for the Raptors. However, the rookie has hit a major wall of late as he is averaging just 5.7 points and 4.7 rebounds over his last nine games. He is shooting 48 percent from the field over that stretch, but coach Dwane Casey has been so upset with Valanciunas' defensive effort that there has been talk about pulling him out of the starting lineup. We aren't as concerned about Valanciunas' defense as his offense, especially since he has scored in double figures in just one of his last nine games. While it is not uncommon for young players to go through ups and downs, Fantasy owners should try and avoid sticking with Valanciunas while he works through his struggles. We strongly recommend leaving him reserved until he is able to turn things around. (owned in 55 percent of leagues)

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Player News
Magic guard Victor Oladipo looking iffy for season opener
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(11:07 am ET) It appears doubtful Magic guard Victor Oladipo, who is recovering from a sprained MCL, will be ready in time for the season opener Oct. 28 against the Pelicans, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Oladipo did attempt a few jumpers and made a few dunks at the outset of practice Monday.

"It feels a lot better," Oladipo said. "It's a day-by-day process. A sprained MCL is kind of like a scab. You've just got to let it heal. That's pretty much what I'm doing."


Amar'e Stoudemire enthusiastic as new season approaches
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:56 am ET) Only time will tell how many games Knicks veteran forward Amar'e Stoudemire will play and how much he will be able to contribute in 2014-15. However, Stoudemire said he feels healthy entering the season and clearly he isn't short on enthusiasm.

"My joy is there. My love of the game is there," the 32-year-old Stoudemire said, per the New York Post. "I feel like I’m 19 again as far as how much I love to play the game of basketball. I feel youthful. To have that type of feeling again as I had my rookie year, to want to play and just want to be out there and get better as a player is pretty encouraging."

Stoudemire received his first start of the preseason Monday against the Bucks. He had 14 points and six rebounds in close to 24 minutes.

"I thought Amar’e was active, he did some good things. He was a good presence four us," said coach Derek Fisher, who had claimed Stoudemire at center was "something we’ve been thinking about" because of "his versatility at that position."


Thunder star Kevin Durant 'not going to rush' back from injury
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:46 am ET) Thunder forward Kevin Durant told reporters Tuesday he has "been antsy" since undergoing foot surgery last week. However, Durant cautioned that he has no intentions of returning sooner than the 6-8-week timeframe he was given.

"Nah, I'm not going to rush it all. That's one thing I'm not going to do," Durant said, per ESPN.

Durant is the NBA's reigning MVP after averaging a career-best 32.0 points per game in 2013-14. He also averaged a career-best 5.5 assists and 7.4 rebounds per game last season.


Thunder's Anthony Morrow adjusting to small-forward role
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:34 am ET) Anthony Morrow signed with the Thunder in the offseason expecting to come off the bench as a backup shooting guard. However, he has been coach Scott Brooks' choice recently to fill the starting small-forward role with star Kevin Durant sidelined due to a foot injury.

"That’s something I’ve had to do in the past, gotten used to it," Morrow said of sliding over to the small forward, per The Oklahoman. "Guarding guys like Stephen Jackson and Corey Maggette (at Golden State), I learned a lot from them early on. So a lot of times I’d be playing small forward my first couple years in the league."

Morrow said he has no preference as to starting or coming off the bench.

"Your physical preparation is the same," Morrow said. "But mentally, I’m the type of guy who wants to get off to a good start. So knowing if I don’t get off to a good start, I got the rest of the game to pick it up (helps). That’s something I had to (adjust to) over the years as I’ve started to come off the bench more."


Thunder have 'very realistic' expectations for Andre Roberson
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:25 am ET) Thunder guard Andre Roberson is tasked with the responsibility of replacing Thabo Sefolosha in the starting lineup in 2014-15 after Sefolosha left for Atlanta in free agency. While Roberson is viewed to have similar defensive skills to Sefolosha, his offensive game is still a work in progress.

"Him and I have had many conversations on what I need from him on the offensive end. And they’re very realistic," Thunder coach Scott Brooks said, per The Oklahoman. "I’m not throwing him out there to say, ‘On any given night I need you to hit 10 3s.’ That’s not the case. He just has to continue to compete on both ends of the floor and get better as the year goes on."

Roberson has appeared in all six preseason games, averaging 6.0 points on 48.3 percent shooting. He is averaging 27.5 minutes per game. Though, he has been hesitant to shoot from long range, as he has attempted only four 3-pointers.

"I got to stop hesitating and shoot it," Roberson admitted.


Stomach virus still has Nets veteran Kevin Garnett sidelined
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10:06 am ET) Nets forward Kevin Garnett was sidelined again during Monday's preseason game against the 76ers due to a stomach virus. The illness is also expected to keep Garnett out of Wednesday's preseason finale against the Celtics, per the New York Post.

"I don’t want to get into his personal bathroom habits," coach Lionel Hollins said with a smile, "But he’s been sick … sick enough to the point where he’s not playing."

The Celtics open the season Oct. 29 against Boston. Garnett should have enough time to recover before the season opener.


Anthony Davis sprains right wrist
by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(10/20/2014) Pelicans power forward Anthony Davis sprained his right wrist during Monday's game against the Wizards, reports the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Hornets G Lance Stephenson a late scratch Monday
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10/20/2014) Hornets guard Lance Stephenson was a late scratch Monday night against the Hawks in preseason action because of more groin soreness, the Charlotte Observer reports. Stephenson returned from the injury Sunday, so it appears as if the team is taking a cautious approach with their newly-acquired shooting guard.

The Hornets will open the season Oct. 29 at home against Milwaukee.


Mavericks' Raymond Felton making progress from ankle issue
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10/20/2014) Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle told reporters guard Raymond Felton is starting to make some progress in his recovery from a right ankle injury, according to the team's official website. Felton suffered the injury Oct. 10 and was given a 10-day timetable for recovery.

"He's doing much better. He's walking, and that's good," Carlisle said. "He's progressing every day."

Felton will not play Monday against the Grizzlies and will have games to return in the preseason. If he is unable to return, he'll be sidelined until Nov. 6 at Portland due to a four-game suspension.


Spurs C Tiago Splitter's status for opener becoming uncertain
by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(10/20/2014) Spurs center Tiago Splitter's status for the regular season opener is starting to look cloudy, according to the San Antonio News-Express. Splitter will not play Monday against the Kings and will likely sit out the team's penultimate preseason game on Wednesday against Atlanta because of a strained right soleus.

The Spurs will open the season Oct. 28 against Dallas.


 
 
 
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