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Week 3 Roto Fact Sheet

by | Fantasy Writer
  •  

Sample sizes are still relatively small, but players and teams are starting to find their identities in this young season. For those of you in category-specific formats, here are some notable factoids that might help you gain an edge in areas of need. We'll continue to validate and debunk trends on a weekly basis in this column going forward.

(All stats up to date through Nov. 12 games. Info provided by NBA.com and Teamrankings.com)

Scoring

Alec Burks (66 percent) and Gerald Henderson (75 percent) are averaging more than 13.5 points per game and have both been in double figures in all their games except one this season. ... Roy Hibbert has been a monster in the blocks category, but he's averaging just 9.9 points per game. He started slow in the scoring column last year as well but picked it up as the season went on -- averaging 9.7 points per game in the first half of last season as opposed to 14.1 in the second half. ... The 76ers, Wizards, Lakers and Clippers are allowing opponents to score more than 105 points per game on average -- the four worst in the league. The Lakers allowed the Timberwolves to score a season-high 47 in the first quarter November 10, so they clearly have vast potential for getting scored on. ... Meanwhile, the Pacers are only giving up 84.5 points per game to opponents this year, so avoid them if you're looking for a spot-start scorer. The Bulls and Spurs are also allowing fewer than 92 points per game. ... One thing Andrea Bargnani will do with his time in the Knicks' starting lineup is score. He's been in double figures both games he's started, including a 25-point outing against Charlotte. Look for him if your team is lacking in points the next few weeks. ... It's still a bit early, but keep Heat forward Michael Beasley on your radar going forward. He played a season-high 20 minutes last night, leading to a season-high 19 points on 8 of 12 shooting off the bench. I wrote about Beasley as a sleeper in the preseason, and while it's not quite time to awaken yet, there's a good chance he'll be a cheap source of points down the road.

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Field-goal percentage

John Henson has been benefitting from Larry Sanders' absence, averaging 10.8 points and 1.4 blocks for the Bucks. Most of his shots comes close to the rim, and his 7-foot-6 wingspan makes it very easy for him to dunk, which has led to a 61.5 field goal percentage to start the year. Sanders will be out for six weeks, so go ahead and pick up Henson, who's still available in 36 percent of leagues. ... Nene has been well-balanced to start the season, making 58.5 percent of his field-goal attempts while averaging 14.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 3.0 assist, 1.2 steals and 1.0 blocks per contest. He's still not owned in 18 percent of leagues so check your free agent pool if you want an efficient big man. ... Rudy Gay's 19.3 points per game come at a hefty price for Roto players, as his field goal percentage is among the worst in the league at 35.6. Gay's inefficiency was in full effect November 11 against the Rockets as he scored 29 and still managed to miss 26 shots. ... Portland is the only team allowing opponents to shoot better than 51 percent on average. The Trailblazers also lead the league in points in the paint allowed per game at 49.7. The Warriors play both Portland and the Jazz in Week 4, so you can browse their fringe options if you're playing catchup in field-goal percentage. ... The No. 1 and No. 3 teams holding opponents to the lowest field goal percentage face off Saturday when the Bulls host the Pacers. There's bound to be some bad shots being forced up in that slugfest, so be sure to roll out your most efficient shooters for the rest of your lineup if you plan on starting anyone in that game.

Rebounds

Jordan Farmar (26 percent) is tied for 8th in rebounds per game among point guard-eligible players at 3.9 a night. He flirted with a triple-double Tuesday night against New Orleans, finishing with nine points, seven rebounds, eight assists and one block. His numbers should continue to go up as Nash will be sidelined for at least two weeks with a back issue. ... Mike Miller (10 percent) has been scrapping his way to 4.7 rebounds per game to go along with his two made threes per contest. Not a bad option if you're lacking in both categories. ... Brook Lopez has been a disappointing rebounder so far, only managing to grab 6.0 a night for the Nets. This number isn't likely to increase anytime soon as the Nets have some of the league leaders in rebounding percentage (Rockets, Raptors, Trailblazers, Bobcats) on their upcoming schedule. ... DeJuan Blair continues to be an intriguing Roto option, as he's averaging more rebounds than Paul Millsap, Al Jefferson and Enes Kanter at 7.9 per game, while only playing 20 minutes a night. His 2.1 steals per game are also good for third in the league among center-eligible players. ... Caron Butler is only owned in 51 percent of leagues, but he's been a fairly productive option at the very shallow small forward position. He's averaging 6.2 rebounds per game to go along with 12.2 points.

Assists

With Steve Nash out, category players might take a look at Steve Blake for assists. Blake dished out a season-high 10 assists Tuesday night and he's averaging 5.6 assist per game while making 2.4 three-pointers a night. Those numbers could increase as the Lakers rely more heavily on Blake and Jordan Farmar to lead their Nash-less backcourt. ... Jordan Crawford is averaging an improbable 4.3 assists per game for the Celtics -- a big shock if you're familiar with his ball-hogging antics. He's never finished a season averaging more than 3.9 so maybe just roll Crawford out there while he's still passing the ball. ... The 76ers' risk-oriented zone defense is meant to maximize steals and fast-break opportunities. A side effect of this style of play is lots of easy baskets off assists, evidenced by their league-leading 27.5 assists allowed per game. ... Conversely, the Pacers are huge and content to stay home on defense, forcing teams to play lots of one-on-one offense. They're only giving up 16.0 assists per game on average.

Free-throw percentage

The rim-missing free throw attempt that allowed Jeff Green to steal a game form Miami on November 9 wasn't the only free throw attempt Dwyane Wade's botched this year. In fact, Wade has only hit 65.8 percent of his foul shots so far this season. ... Andrew Bynum is averaging more than two free throws per game and has converted on 92.9 percent of them so far. He'll reportedly miss the next two games for a personal issue, but keep an eye on Bynum going forward, as he received his first start of the season November 11, going a perfect 6 for 6 from the free-throw line while logging a season-high 21 minutes against the Bulls. ... Brandon Bass has been logging 30.0 minutes per game for the Celtics while shooting 90.0 percent from the charity stripe. He's also averaging 12.7 points per contest. ... J.J. Redick continues to be the quintessential free-throw ace, shooting 96.0 percent while averaging more than three attempts per game.

Three-pointers

Gerald Green may have finally found a home in Phoenix, and he's at least shooting well enough to stay in the Suns' rotation. Green is tied for eighth in the league, averaging 2.4 made threes per contest. ... Jodie Meeks is starting to pick up his production for the Lakers, averaging 2.2 threes and 13.0 points per game. ... The 76ers' zone is also leaving tons of space for three-point shooters, as Philadelphia is giving up 12.0 made threes per game -- the worst rate in the league. Look for shooters who play them to gain an edge in that category. ... The Celtics, meanwhile, are still defending the three-point line better than any other team, giving up only 4.4 made threes per game. ... The Wizards are attempting a league-high 27.8 threes per game, making Martell Webster a nice streaming option if you're in need of a long-range shooter. He's currently averaging 1.8 made threes per game. ... If for some reason Kyle Korver isn't owned in your league, you should go ahead and grab him. Making close to three triples per game while shooting close to 50 percent from downtown is totally realistic for Korver over the span of a season. He finished last year netting 2.6 made threes per game while converting on 45.7 percent of them.

Steals/Turnovers

Bucks guard Nate Wolters leads the league in assist-per-turnover rate, averaging just 0.8 turnovers a night while dishing out 5.7 assists -- good for 18th in the league. ... The 76ers and the Lakers have been the sloppiest ball-handlers so far this year, with opposing teams averaging more than 10 steals per game against them. ... Mario Chalmers (67 percent) is tied for fourth in the league in steals per game at 2.3. He's also scoring 10.4 points and dishing out 5.3 assists. ... Corey Brewer has been using his long arms to pick up his steals production, as he's come up with 11 in the span of his last five games. He usually scores on a run-out whenever he steals the ball, so his 13.4 points per game could see an increase as he becomes more active on defense. ... Metta World Peace has done a good job of not turning the ball over, only doing so an average of 1.3 times per night. He's also taking the ball away 1.7 times a night while scoring 11.5 points and grabbing 4.0 boards. ... Derrick Rose is finally averaging more assists than turnovers, but neither number is very impressive. He's tied for third in the league with 4.2 giveaways per game, while only dishing out 4.5 assists per night. ... John Henson has been a model of ball security, averaging less than one turnover per game. This number might increase as he takes on a larger role filling in for Larry Sanders, but go ahead and grab him for efficient play around the rim to go along with a few blocks per night.

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Player News
Hornets center Al Jefferson looking to improve defensive presence
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(5:25 pm ET) Hornets center Al Jefferson said he is tired of being a defensive liability and is looking to make sure opposing teams don't target his pick-and-roll defense, according to The Charlotte Observer.

"I refuse to continue getting picked on at the end of games. It’s not fun," Jefferson said. "Last year at the end of games teams always put me in high pick-and-rolls. I got sick of them thinking that was to their advantage, and it was to their advantage."

Coach Steve Clifford said he was happy that Jefferson brought up the subject of his defensive issues and saved the coaches from having to point it out.

"He’s working hard. His attitude is great. I sense more of a hunger than any kind of complacency," Clifford said. "He sees what the possibilities are for the group. He’s competitive and wants to win."


Pistons coach speaks highly of Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(5:14 pm ET) Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy spoke highly Wednesday about second-year guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, according to the team's official website.

"You always look at players first to their strengths, where can a guy be great," Van Gundy said. "I think he can be an elite defender in this league at the two guard and we’ll look for that every night. I think he is a high-energy guy who can get up and down the floor and attack the basket in transition. Those two things have got to be his foundation."

Caldwell-Pope averaged 24 points per game in the Summer League. However, he's still not at the stage in his career where the Pistons are counting on him to be one of their top scorers.

"On the offensive end, he’s going to have to slow down a little bit, get under control, and like a lot of people it will come down to how many shots he can make, how efficient he can be shooting the ball, how consistent can you be," Van Gundy said. "But I think he’s got a great foundation with the defense and energy that will get him on the floor and give him a chance to develop in those other areas."


Lakers forward Ryan Kelly suffers hamstring strain
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(4:31 pm ET) Lakers forward Ryan Kelly suffered a moderate left hamstring strain Wednesday. The Lakers will have more information about the severity of his injury Thursday, according to the Los Angeles Daily News.

Pacers forward C.J. Miles not worried about calf strain
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(4:24 pm ET) Pacers forward C.J. Miles has been unable to complete a full practice at the start of training camp due to a calf strain, according to VigilantSports.com. However, Miles is not worried about the injury.

"It’s just a little strain, nothing crazy," he said Wednesday. "I’m pretty much healed. I’m doing everything just monitoring the contact a little bit just because of the wear and tear on it.

"It doesn’t make sense for me to be out with a strain for three weeks now when I could take a couple days just two get it all the way back, finish the month and be ready for the first game of the season. But I’m well past sitting out. Just monitoring it, that’s all."

Miles added he only sits out a portion of practice.

"I do everything throughout the whole practice until like just a little bit of the contact just towards the end," he explained. "Since the first practices are long, they don’t want me go through the wear and tear of the whole practice."


Jonas Jerebko will be part of Pistons' 10-man rotation
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3:24 pm ET) Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy indicated Wednesday forward Jonas Jerebko will be part of a 10-man rotation this season.

"We'll play at least nine on a nightly basis but probably 10 a lot, based on the way Jonas has played in September and in camp," Van Gundy said after Wednesday's morning practice, per the team's official website. "I've been really happy (with him). Nobody put more time in here this summer than Jonas did. Because of his play with the national team in years past, he's never really been able to devote as much time to his own development and his own game. He's gotten stronger. He's in tremendous shape.

"I think the key to Jonas -- and we talked about this early on -- is he has to get back to being the guy he was when he first came into the league, that hungry guy playing with incredible energy, trying to make his spot. What we've seen in September, he looks like a guy who is committed to being a high-energy guy."


D.J. Stephens added to Pelicans' training camp roster
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:34 pm ET) The Pelicans added guard/forward D.J. Stephens to the training camp roster, according to The Times-Picayune. Stephens appeared in three games for the Bucks in 2013-14, averaging 2.3 points and 1.7 rebounds.

Josh McRoberts expects to be ready by Heat season opener
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:31 pm ET) Heat forward Josh McRoberts will not play in Wednesday's scrimmage due to a toe injury, according to the Sun-Sentinel. McRoberts, who had toe surgery in the offseason, said he has dealt with the issue for years.

"I've needed surgery for a couple years," McRoberts said. "We kind of figured out last year before the season started. I knew right when the playoffs ended, so it was something I had planned for."

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said the Heat are just being cautious to avoid McRoberts aggravating the injury. However, McRoberts expects to be ready by the season opener in late October.

"I'm just kind of easing back into things," McRoberts said. "It takes time to recover from something like this. I'm just trying not to overdo it."


Heat forward Chris Andersen working on jump shot
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(2:24 pm ET) Heat forward Chris Andersen is spending extra time after practice during training camp to work on jumpers from the elbow and baseline, according to the Sun-Sentinel. Andersen is putting in the extra work because the Heat feel he can be used in more than just pick-and-roll situations.

"To step out and have that confidence to shoot the 15-footer, a lot of people haven't seen it or don't expect it," Andersen said. "This year, [coach Erik Spoelstra] says he's going to implement it into the game plan. I look forward to getting that opportunity."


Norris Cole looking to become a scoring threat for Heat
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:43 pm ET) Heat guard Norris Cole said he wants to become more of a scoring threat this season, according to the Sun-Sentinel.

"We had so many playmakers [last year] that there were times I deferred to let those guys make the plays," Cole said. "They were great at it…. But I also I saw [plays] where I could have been more aggressive to attack."

The Heat are expected to have more balanced scoring in 2014-15 since LeBron James is no longer on the roster.

"He's gotten better individually for sure," guard Dwayne Wade said. "He had a hell of a summer working out and getting prepared. Defensively, he's a monster. The next wave for him is how to be effective as a point guard and effective as a scoring guard. He's going to have to figure out the perfect way to do that. It's not always easy for guys but if he can figure it out he can be very dangerous for us."


Blazers' LaMarcus Aldridge expected to attempt more 3-pointers
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(1:35 pm ET) Trail Blazers coach Terry Stotts expects power forward LaMarcus Aldridge to attempt more than the 15 3-pointers he took last season during the 2014-15 campaign, according to The Oregonian. However, it doesn't appear Aldridge will become a 3-point specialist any time soon.

"This summer, I worked on it a lot more, so we'll see this season," he said. "If it's there, I'll take it. I'm not going to force it at all."


 
 
 
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