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Week 5 Roto Fact Sheet

by | Fantasy Writer
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A wave of injuries has shifted the statistical landscape in the NBA over the past couple weeks. More minutes for replacements means more chances to help out in areas of expertise. 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.

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(All stats up to date through Nov. 29 games. Info provided by NBA.com and Teamrankings.com)

Scoring

John Wall has been on a tear, averaging a hair less than 30 points per game over the last seven days. The Wizards are without Bradley Beal's 20 points per game for the time being, so expect Wall to keep scoring in bunches during his absence. ... Rodney Stuckey (65 percent) has always had a knack for getting buckets, but lately his production has exceeded expectations. He's gone over 20 points twice in the last three games and is averaging 16.6 points per contest for the season. ... Nick Young (32 percent) is another shoot-first guard who's picked up his scoring as of late. Young scored a season-high 26 against Brooklyn Wednesday night and is averaging 17.5 points per game over the last seven days. ... The 76ers remain the most frequently scored on team, giving up a league-high 109.1 points to opponents per game. They play the Bobcats next week, so consider Gerald Henderson (80 percent) a good Week 6 start if you need help in the points column. ... A surprising 71 percent of leagues consider Kevin Garnett worth rostering, despite his horrendous 6.7 points per game on 36 percent shooting for the season. These owners might be better off adding Andray Blatche, who's reached double-digit scoring in each of his last seven games.

Field-Goal Percentage

Andre Drummond spends a lot of time dunking, currently leading the league with 41 slams on the season. Dunks comprise 47.6 percent of his made field goals so far. Therefore, his 64.7 "shooting" percentage doesn't come as a surprise because almost every other "shot" he attempts involves a hand or two on the rim. ... LeBron James is converting a mind-boggling 60 percent of his field goal attempts. Pretty amazing considering he's third in the league in scoring while shooting almost seven fewer shots per game than second-place Carmelo Anthony. ... Tony Allen is on your team because of his 2.2 steals per game, but his 55 percent field goal shooting is a nice bonus for Roto players. ... J.R. Smith has struggled mightily with his stroke to start the season, converting on only 32 percent of his 13 field goal attempts per game. ... Reggie Jackson (41 percent) has remained productive coming off the bench. His 48 percent shooting from the field is fifth in the league among point guards who attempt at least nine field goals per game. He can help out in just about every other category too -- shooting 90 percent from the free throw line to go along with 4.0 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.2 steals per game.

Rebounds

Kosta Koufos (54 percent) looks comfortable in the Grizzlies starting lineup, grabbing 13 rebounds in each of his first two starts filling in for Marc Gasol. ... How is it that the Heat can be both the worst rebounding team in the league and still give up the fewest rebounds to opponents per game? It's made possible by ultra efficient offense as Miami is the only team to make more than 50 percent of its field goals. Meanwhile, the Lakers give up the most rebounds to opponents because they attempt almost 12 more field goals per game than the Heat while making only 43.8 percent of them. ... Robin Lopez (71 percent) has been rebounding well as of late, averaging 10.5 over the last seven days. ... Martell Webster ranks fourth among shooting-guard eligible players with 5.0 rebounds per game. He's logged 40 minutes-plus in four straight games and will remain cemented in the Wizards' lineup during Beal's absence. ... Ryan Anderson is great for Roto because of his shooting, but his rebounding has been pretty bad to start the year. He's only grabbing 4.8 a game. Reggie Evans has been able to grab more per contest despite playing only 13.5 minutes a night compared to Anderson's 31.4.

Assists

Mike D'antoni continues to work wonders for point guards, as evidenced by Steve Blake's surging numbers. Blake (84 percent) has dished out more than 10 assists in five games this year, which he hadn't done once since 2010. He ranks sixth in the league in helpers per game with 7.3, more than LeBron James, Tony Parker and Kyrie Irving. ... At the other end of the spectrum is Kemba Walker who only contributes 4.1 helpers per game. The only starting point guard averaging fewer assists per contest is George Hill at 3.8. ... Kenyon Martin wins the award for most unlikely assist man over the last seven days, averaging 4.7 during that span. He'll likely continue to get minutes while Tyson Chandler recovers from injury, so keep an eye on his numbers. ... Fancy new stats allow Fantasy owners to see whether or not assist numbers are sustainable. For instance, Stephen Curry is averaging 8.8 assists on 14.7 assist opportunities per game. This means his teammates are shooting about 60 percent when Curry passes them the ball. Meanwhile, John Wall is averaging the same number of assists on 18.7 opportunities per game, making it much easier to buy into his numbers long term as opposed to Curry's.

Free-throw percentage

If you're struggling in the category because of Dwight Howard or Andre Drummond, you might consider adding Channing Frye, who's averaging double-figure scoring while shooting better than 80 percent from the line. ... Brandon Bass is making a scintillating 90 percent of his free throws this season -- good for second among power forwards attempting more than two per game. ... Michael Carter-Williams does many things well, however free-throw shooting is not one of them. He's only making 68.3 percent of his five-plus attempts per game. ... Other productive guards shooting free throws in the 60s include Lance Stephenson, Dion Waiters, Tyreke Evans and Dwyane Wade.

Three pointers

Channing Frye has been launching from deep all season, but over the last week he's seen a lot of them fall. Frye has made 14 over a four-game span, including five against Charlotte. ... Patrick Beverley (60 percent) has also been hitting from deep, averaging 2.3 made threes per game in the last seven days. That number could remain for the next two weeks while Jeremy Lin recovers from a knee sprain. ... Caron Butler has been surprisingly effective from downtown, averaging two made threes per game for the season. He only averages 0.8 per game for his career, so don't expect him to maintain this pace. ... The D'antoni system has been fully implemented as the Lakers currently lead the league in three point field goals made and are second in attempts. Philadelphia continues to be a gold mine for three point shooters, allowing a league-leading 10.9 made threes per game.

Blocks

Not since Dikembe Mutombo in 1995 has an NBA player averaged four blocks per game for an entire season. Roy Hibbert and Anthony Davis are on the cusp of that number so far at 3.9 apiece. ... Serge Ibaka has been surging in the blocks category as of late, tallying up 21 over his last six games. ... Samuel Dalembert, Jon Henson, Robin Lopez and Wesley Johnson are all widely available players averaging at least 1.4 blocks per game. ... Opposing teams are having block parties against the 76ers, averaging 7.3 per game. Meanwhile, teams playing the Heat average less than three per game.

Steals/Turnovers

The Thunder are currently the most stolen-from team in the league, with opponents averaging almost 10 thefts a game this year. On the other hand, the Knicks' isolation-heavy offense has them giving up the least amount of steals per game at 6.1. ... DeJuan Blair (45 percent) is tied for first in steals among center-eligible players. He and Andre Drummond average 1.8 steals per game. ... The Rockets turn the ball over more than any other team, so it only makes sense that their star player, James Harden, leads the league in giveaways per game at 4.3. ... Victor Oladipo remains the Fantasy player giving owners the fewest assists with the most turnovers. On the flip side, Martell Webster has only turned the ball over seven times in 15 games -- probably because he's shooting just about every time he gets the ball.

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Player News
LeBron James dealing with some back soreness after scrimmage
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(10/1/2014) Cavaliers forward LeBron James is dealing with a bit of back soreness following the team's scrimmage Wednesday, according to ESPN.

Following the scrimmage, head coach David Blatt downplayed the issue. "I think overall [LeBron's] fine," Blatt said. "He’s got a little bit of back soreness and we’ll monitor that carefully." James scored 13 points during the scrimmage. 


Pelicans being 'smart' with Jrue Holiday's practice time
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(10/1/2014) The Pelicans are being cautious with point guard Jrue Holiday, limiting his practice time as he returns from surgery to repair a stress fracture in his tibia, The Times-Picayune reports.

"We are trying to be smart with his comeback," coach Monty Williams said. "After about two weeks of this, it's time to ramp it up and get going."

Holiday said he came out of Tuesday's and Wednesday's practices feeling good if a bit sore. "I'm sore," Holiday said. "Again I don't think I have pushed my body this much for a long time. It's good. All of our trainers and Monty had to kick me off the court yesterday because I didn't want to stop. But I am glad he did because I am feeling it today. Again that's a part of me still learning how to take care of my body and come back strong these next days."

Holiday didn't play a game after Jan. 8 last season and ultimately underwent surgery in February. He averaged 14.3 points, 7.9 assists and 4.2 rebounds in 34 games.


Hornets center Al Jefferson looking to improve defensive presence
by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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
(10/1/2014) 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."


 
 
 
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