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Rotisserie specials for Week 11

by | Fantasy Writer
  •  

Now that the holiday season is behind us, the NBA returns to somewhat of a normal schedule this week, albeit there are a few teams who once again have a light workload over the next seven days.

Fantasy Week 11 (Jan. 7-13) marks the halfway point in the season for most leagues, which means it's time for owners to start making their push toward the postseason. With all the injuries that have been popping up of late, that can easier said than done, but we have combed over rosters and upcoming schedules and 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.

Find a place for 'em

Kyle Korver, G, Hawks (@MIN, @CLE, UTA, @WAS): Korver continues to earn starts for coach Larry Drew, which is part of the reason he is averaging 10.6 points over his first 27 games -- his highest scoring output since the 2006-07 season. However, the main reason for Korver's increased scoring has been his 3-point shooting, as he has already made 71 triples on the year and is connecting on 43.3 percent of his shots from downtown, which ranks ninth in the league. The Hawks have given Korver the green light to fire away at will and the veteran has responded by chucking up 6.1 3-point attempts per game -- the second highest of his career. He gave Fantasy owners 11 treys during the last scoring period and will continue to fire away in Week 11 with the Cavaliers, T'Woves, Jazz and Wizards on the schedule. Utah, Cleveland and Washington are all allowing their opponents to make more than 36 percent of their shots from behind the arc, and Minnesota has also had recent issues defending the long ball. Korver is shooting 44 percent from behind the arc over his last 10 contests so get him active this week. (owned in 36 percent of leagues)

Ray Allen, G, Heat (@IND, @POR, @SAC): Allen got off to a nice start with the Heat this season as he averaged 12.4 points over his first 20 games on 49.4 percent shooting from the field, including 46.3 percent from downtown. But the veteran hit a cold spell during the holidays as he made just 36 percent of his shots over his next seven games and only scored in double figures twice over that stretch. He was only averaging 1.3 made treys during his slump and as a result ended up on many Fantasy benches. However, Allen has caught fire again and just in time for the start of Week 11. The 37-year-old has made 19 of his last 33 field-goal attempts over his last four contests, including going 9 of 15 from downtown in that span. He is averaging 13.5 points and four rebounds during his recent hot streak and now will get to face the defensively challenged Trail Blazers and Kings in the upcoming scoring period. All players go through shooting slumps at some point during the season but Allen seems to snap out of his quicker than most. Get him active for the upcoming scoring period. (owned in 58 percent of leagues)

Carlos Delfino, F, Rockets (LAL, @NO, @BOS, @PHI): Delfino has been one of the more frustrating options for owners this season as he has struggled with injuries and inconsistency for much of the year. However, the 30-year-old seems to be fully healthy now and responded by dropping in 14 made 3-pointers over his last four games, fueling a pair of 22-point scoring performances. Delfino's main asset to Fantasy owners continues to be his 3-point shooting, as he has made at least 36 percent of his shots from behind the arc over his last five seasons. He is shooting 37.7 percent from downtown this season and has been encouraged to shoot at will in coach Kevin McHale's up-tempo offense. Delfino has responded by attempting a career-high six shots from behind the arc per game thus far and should continue to fire away this week against some teams that have struggled to defend the 3-point line. The Hornets and Celtics both rank near the bottom of the pack in opposition 3-point percentage, and Delfino dropped in 15 points in his lone meeting against the Lakers earlier in the year. He is shooting 48.6 percent from downtown over his last five contests and should remain active in the majority of formats this week. (owned in 20 percent of leagues)

Derrick Williams, F, T'Wolves (ATL, @OKC, @NO, @SA): Williams started the year as the team's starting power forward the last time Kevin Love was sidelined with a hand injury and averaged 10.3 points, 5.7 rebounds over his nine starts while seeing 25 minutes per game. His playing time was cut drastically once Love returned as he averaged 13.9 minutes per game once that happened and only saw more than 20 minutes once. However, he played the entire fourth quarter in Minnesota's last game and responded by dropping in 16 points in the final period. Now that Love will miss an extended amount of time, Williams will be counted on to help fill the void at power forward once again. While he may continue to come off the bench in favor of Dante Cunningham, the 21-year-old should easily see his minutes climb back up into the 20-25 minute range. Of course the rule of thumb is more minutes usually translates into more production, so we would expect Williams' numbers to be on the rise this week and moving forward. Fantasy owners should get the second-year man active this week. (owned in 40 percent of leagues)

Spencer Hawes, C, 76ers (BKN, @TOR, HOU): Hawes turned in another productive week for Fantasy owners as he posted a solid 11.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 1.8 blocks during Week 10. While the 24-year-old had a few tough shooting performances over his last four games, he still shot 47 percent from the field over that stretch while averaging 27.7 minutes off the bench. Hawes has been turning in productive stat lines on a nightly basis ever since snapping out of his slump in the middle of December and continues to see quality minutes off the bench for coach Doug Collins. The sixth-year center out of the University of Washington looks to have a decent chance to keep things rolling this week as he will face a pair of opponents he has already had success against this year. Hawes has averaged a 9-7-2 stat line in his two contests the Raptors thus far and dropped in 14 points and six rebounds in his lone meeting against the Rockets. Fantasy owners should continue to roll with Hawes as a viable low-end start in most Rotisserie formats this week. (owned in 56 percent of leagues)

Put 'em on your bench

Garrett Temple, G, Wizards (OKC, ATL): With the Wizards struggling to keep their guards healthy, Temple was signed and immediately became the team's starting point guard. The 26-year-old has started each of the past five games for the Wizards and posted 4.4 points, 6.6 assists and 4.6 rebounds over that stretch. However, Temple has failed to score in two of those contests and is shooting just 18.9 percent from the field during his starting run. While his decent assist and rebounding numbers have helped make up for his lack of scoring, Temple's poor shooting numbers are really hurting owners in Rotisserie formats. Despite the fact that he is seeing 30-plus minutes most nights as a starter, Temple should not be starting in most category-based formats until he proves he can consistently knock down some shots. That should ring especially true in the upcoming scoring period as the Wizards are one of three clubs scheduled to play just two games in Week 11. (owned in 12 percent of leagues)

Austin Rivers, G, Hornets (SA, HOU, MIN, @NY): Rivers has spent much of his rookie campaign in the starting lineup but was still seeing big-time minutes in the contests he came off the bench. However, now that Eric Gordon is back and proving to be healthy, the days of Rivers seeing 27-plus minutes per night appear to be over. The 20-year-old has not seen the floor for more than 18 minutes in either of his last four games and was replaced by Gordon in the starting lineup in New Orleans' last contest. Rivers' production has taken a big hit as a result of his reduced playing time as he has scored a combined nine points over his last four tilts and is just 2 for 17 from the field over in that span. While the Hornets remain very high on Rivers, the rookie will now spend most of his time on the bench behind Gordon -- at least for the time being. Fantasy owners should plan on leaving Rivers on the bench for Week 11 and beyond at this point. (owned in 29 percent of leagues)

Hakim Warrick, F, Bobcats (UTA, @TOR, @IND): Warrick was thrust into the starting lineup when Byron Mullens went down with an injury and got Fantasy owners' attention by averaging 14.3 points and 7.7 rebounds over his first three starts. However, anyone who has followed Warrick's career knows that while he shows flashes of high-end potential he has always had problems sustaining long stretches of productivity. The 30-year-old seems to be living up to his reputation once again as he scored a combined seven points over his last two games and then missed Charlotte's most recent contest with an illness. While Warrick will most likely be the team's starting power forward in Week 11, he could have a tough go of it against the Raptors, Jazz and Pacers. All three teams are very deep in the front court and Warrick has struggled when he is matched up against bigger bodies on the block. Fantasy owners are best to leave Warrick reserved for the upcoming scoring period. (owned in 15 percent of leagues)

Lamar Odom, F, Clippers, (DAL, ORL): After once again being out of shape entering the season, Odom wasn't much of a factor in coach Vinny Del Negro's rotation over the first few weeks of the season. However, Odom has worked himself back into shape and Los Angeles' rotation and is starting to show flashes of his old self. The veteran is averaging 22.5 minutes per game over his last 10 contests and has put up 4.2 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.7 blocks over that stretch. The only part of Odom's game that has yet to come around has been his scoring but to be fair, he isn't looking to do much of that of late. In fact, Odom is putting up a career-low 4.1 field-goal attempts and has made 40 percent of those on the year. While the 33-year-old appears to be on the verge of breaking out and becoming relevant in Fantasy land again, owners should continue to leave him reserved in Week 11. The Clippers are one of only three teams to play twice in the upcoming scoring period, which doesn't leave much room for error if he has a bad game. Still, keep an eye on how Odom fares moving forward as it appears his value is on the rise. (owned in 25 percent of leagues)

Andre Drummond, C, Pistons, (@MIL, UTA): Drummond continues to be one of the more impressive young big men in the game as the rookie is averaging 7.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks on the year. He is shooting 58 percent from the field and finally seems to have coach Lawrence Frank's trust as he has seen around 23 minutes over his last 10 games. While normally a downward trend or tough upcoming matchups usually dictate whether a player ends up on the sit list, Drummond's appearance this week is the result of Detroit's light schedule. The Pistons are one of three teams to play just twice in Week 11, which doesn't leave a ton of room for error if the 19-year-old has a bad game. While Drummond looks to have all the necessary tools to be a contributing option in Fantasy this season, owners should leave him reserved in the upcoming scoring period. (owned in 70 percent of leagues)

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Player News
Omer Asik ready to clean up in return to starting role
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Last season was a rough one for Omer Asik, who had to deal with returning to a reserve role after really shining as a starter the previous year. He should be much happier with his role this season, as the Pelicans acquired him this offseason with the intention of installing him as the starting center.

The Pelicans should have a fearsome frontcourt with Asik starting next to Anthony Davis, and Davis' presence should free Asik up to do the kind of work he excels at. Asik isn't a great offensive player, but he can be a dominant offensive rebounder, and should have many chances to clean up the boards with teams keying in on Davis offensively. Among players who have logged at least 5,000 minutes in the NBA, Asik is 22nd all-time in offensive rebounding percentage.

Asik had trouble staying healthy last season, but that was the first time he had ever missed a regular-season game in his career, so we can probably write that off as a fluke. He averaged a double-double with 1.1 blocks per game in 30.0 minutes per game two years ago, and should be capable of similar production as he returns to a starting role.

Asik should be viewed as a starting Fantasy option this season, though he may not have the upside of some other younger centers at this point. 


Tobias Harris' Fantasy value a mystery at this point
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Perception is a funny thing. Just ask Magic forward Tobias Harris, who enjoyed by far the most productive season of his career in 2013-14 but was somehow viewed as a Fantasy disappointment.

Part of that stemmed from Harris' issues with availability, as he missed 20 games and got off to a slow start to the season as a result. It really took until January for Harris to find his stride, but he averaged 15.2 points and 7.1 rebounds per game from Jan. 1 on, without missing a contest.

Harris was probably better than the general perception of him a year ago, but the power of expectations hurt him. And now he enters his fourth season as something of a career crossroads, and it is hard to say just how Fantasy owners should approach him this season.

The Magic added Channing Frye and Aaron Gordon to the roster this season, further confusing what was already one of the most crowded frontcourts in the league. Harris can play both forward spots, but he is probably best used as a small-ball power forward; the presence of Frye, one of the league's elite stretch-fours certainly complicates matters for Harris, then.

At just 22, Harris still has a world of potential ahead of him. However, he probably profiles best as a reserve Fantasy option heading into the season, given concerns about his role.   


Hype may be too high for Giannis Antetokounmpo
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) No matter what he accomplishes in his second NBA season, Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo is likely to be a historical outlier, given his age. The question is, how much of a leap can the now-20-year-old take next season.

Only 15 players in NBA history have logged as many minutes in a single season as a teenager as Antetokounmpo's 1,897, so he is occupying fairly rarified air already. His age is a big part of why he is considered a big-time breakout prospect for Fantasy purposes, but he has a long way to go from a statistical standpoint.

Antetokounmpo was good for a 19-year-old rookie, but his season averages of 6.8 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game left a lot to be desired. It is easy to dream about a Antetokounmpo taking a big step forward, but that next step is never guaranteed -- for every Anthony Davis there is a Michael Kidd-Gilchrist whose development follows a slower, less linear path. 

Antetokounmpo was very good -- for a 19-year-old. However, Fantasy owners don't get extra points, rebounds or assists if the degree of difficulty is higher, so you are betting on Giannis taking a huge step forward at the age of 20. Antetokounmpo has become something of an internet darling, and his play in Summer League and the FIBA World Cup dominated much of the offseason discussion, which only helped build the hype to potentially unsustainable levels. 

He is a lottery ticket, for sure, but he is one that might not be worth the cost at this point. 


Improved jump shot all Jimmy Butler needs
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Bulls guard Jimmy Butler had the breakout season many expected from him a year ago, but there were still plenty of flaws apparent in his game as he finished his third NBA season. With a better team around him, Butler just might have enough help to vault him to stardom.

Butler's jump shot abandoned him last season, especially after a toe injury forced him to miss 11 games in November and December. He was shooting 43.7 percent from the field and 38.5 percent from three-point range prior to the injury, but connected on just 39.3 percent of his shots overall and 27.1 percent from three-point range from that point on.

We can blame Butler's season-long shooting slump on the injury or his increased offensive role, but he should have neither excuse available for him this season. Butler should be healthy, and the Bulls added plenty of offensive firepower this offseason, in the form of Pau Gasol and Doug McDermott, not to mention a hopefully healthy Derrick Rose. Butler took 154 shots off the dribble last season, per Stats.NBA.com, and made just 30.7 percent of them. With a better team around him, Butler should get many more opportunities to shoot with his feet set.

Butler has the skill set to be a tremendously efficient offensive player, given how often he bullies his way to the free-throw line. Last season, Butler filled up the box score extremely well, but his poor shooting limited his Fantasy value somewhat. If a new role helps his efficiency, he could be one of the very best guards in the league in category-based formats. 


Lance Stephenson set for bigger role in new setting
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Though there were fits and starts, Lance Stephenson finally began to live up to his considerable promise last season. Now in a new home in Charlotte, will Stephenson take another step forward in 2014-15?

By the end of last season, the Pacers were a mess, and Stephenson caught plenty of the blame for that. Still, he might have been arguably the team's most consistent player throughout the season, averaging between 25.8 and 29.7 Fantasy points per game from before and after the All-Star break as well as the playoffs. For as much of a mess as that team was, Stephenson emerged as something of a rock, at least for Fantasy purposes.

The Hornets are actually built in a somewhat similar way to the Pacers, so there wont' be much of a stylistic shift for Stephenson to get used to. Per MySynergySports.com, 11.8 percent of the then-Bobcats' possessions ended in post-ups, actually down from the 13.2 percent mark the Pacers' posted. Stephenson struggled at times with his post-entry passing, though his off-target feeds might find their mark more often when being lobbed in to the soft hands of Al Jefferson, as opposed to Roy Hibbert.

The Hornets might lean even more heavily on Stephenson than the Pacers did, since Indiana liked to spread the ball around with their starting five. The Hornets, on the other hand, look to be extremely top-heavy, and Stephenson will get plenty of chances to be the second or third option. We have him projected for 29.1 Fantasy points per game, and consider Stephenson a borderline top-50 Fantasy option for this season.  


Move to Houston won't alter Trevor Ariza's trajectory
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Trevor Ariza parlayed a career-year into a lucrative free-agency contract with the Rockets this offseason -- stop me if you've heard this story before.

Ariza was largely a disappointment in his first stint with the Rockets, though it did lead him to the best per-game numbers of his career. Still, Ariza was obviously miscast as a primary offensive option the last time he was in Houston, and that won't be a problem this time around.

Ariza joins a Rockets team with two established stars, and will likely spend much of his time trying to fill the departed Chandler Parsons' role. That should suit him nicely, as Ariza has just enough of an off-the-bounce game to serve as the team's third ballhandler when the shot clock gets deep. Ariza attempted 11.1 field-goal attempts per game last season, and should see a boost given Parsons' role; he attempted 13.3 shots per game.

Ariza's improved three-point shot seems legitimate, as he is shooting 38.6 percent from long range over 738 attempts since 2012. However, he will no longer have John Wall feeding him for juicy corner 3-pointers; Wall to Ariza was the league's most productive corner-three combination last season. His shooting numbers may take a hit with his move.

Even acknowledging the loss of Wall's help, we know the Houston offense is set up to get every player the most efficient shots possible, so Ariza shouldn't see much of a dip in his efficiency. His ability to fill up the box score makes him a perfect No. 2 option at forward in category-based leagues, especially now that he is a high-volume shooter. 


Despite new role, don't write off Isaiah Thomas entirely
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Suns guard Isaiah Thomas might see one of the biggest dropoffs in his Fantasy value from last season to this, as he joins the crowded Suns' backcourt.

The Suns might have three All-Star caliber guards in the backcourt now, with Thomas likely to backup Goran Dragic and Eric Bledsoe this season. That should put a serious dent in Thomas' value; Thomas finished 13th in Fantasy scoring among guards a year ago, but is projected to finish just 43rd this season.

Still, Thomas is definitely someone you'll want to add to your team when drafting, and almost certainly before the rest of the No. 4-type guards he is grouped with. Thomas is likely to see his numbers fall off from the 20.3 points and 6.3 assists he averaged a year ago, at least at first. However, it wouldn't be a surprise to see him end up starting upwards of 25 games throughout the year, given Bledsoe's injury-proneness. Bledsoe has missed at least 25 games in two of the last three seasons for knee issues.

Thomas probably profiles as more of a bench option for Fantasy purposes next season, but you'll be targeting him much earlier than nearly any other reserve. His upside as a handcuff option for either Bledsoe or Dragic is sky-high, and will make him well worth your attention on Draft Day. 


Eric Gordon cleared for contact
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Pelicans guard Eric Gordon has been cleared to take part in full-contact offseason drills ahead of training camp, The Times-Picayune reports.

Gordon underwent season-ending knee surgery last April, but is expected to be ready for the start of the regular season. 


Jrue Holiday cleared for contact ahead of camp
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday was able to participate in full-contact offseason drills last week, the first time he has done so since undergoing season-ending surgery last January.

"Getting out playing has been a joy," Holiday told The Times-Picayune. "I've been running and jumping and stuff, but getting my rhythm back on the court is definitely a big thing right now for me."

The Pelicans open training camp Sept. 30, and Holiday is not expected to have any limitations as the team prepares for the start of the season. Holiday averaged 14.3 points, 7.9 assists and 1.6 steals per game last season prior to the injury.


Kent Bazemore focused on conditioning in recovery
by Chris Towers | CBSSports.com
(9/17/2014) Newly signed Hawks guard Kent Bazemore did not pick up a basketball until August, preferring to focus on conditioning in his recovery from foot surgery in April.

"I think the injury was definitely a blessing," he told the Daily Press, "because I was able to step away from the game of basketball. I took myself out of my element all summer. I did stuff I'm not used to doing."

Bazemore signed a two-year deal with the Hawks this offseason, and is expected to compete for playing time on the wing immediately, as he is fully recovered from the surgery. 


 
 
 
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