IF you have been living under a rock you wouldn’t know that Milwaukee Bucks forward Jabari Parker suffered an ACL tear on Wednesday night. It is a repeat of the same injury that robbed Parker of most of his rookie season in 2014. Parker was having a career year averaging over 20 PPG and looked to be back at his explosive best, but unfortunately the basketball gods had other plans. Therefore, the Bucks will be lacking a major piece of their rotation and someone will have to step up to fill Parker’s shoes.
WITH every injury comes opportunity and there are plenty of guys on the Bucks that are ready to step up and shine. Malcolm Brogdon (34.% ownership) has dipped slightly in ownership ever since his breakout month in January. Brogdon was a bench piece moving into the new year and showed flashes of his potential throughout the season. Then over a 12 game period when he started every game, playing a tick over 32 minutes a game, he scored double digits in all but one game. It wasn’t just his 11.7 PPG though, Brogdon was able to contribute 5.8 assists, 4.5 rebounds and made 23 of his 24 free throws. Since being demoted back to the bench Brodgon’s averages in now 28 minutes have dropped in the past 10 games. A few bad shooting nights dropped his percentages, but his overall output has fallen off, despite the fact that he is only playing four less minutes.
NOW that Jabari is injured, Brogdon could be called upon to re-enter the starting line-up, which bodes well for his output based on his past numbers. Another guy who can help fill the void left by Parker is Khris Middleton (50.5%). Ironically, he returned from a hamstring injury to make his season debut in the same game that Parker went down. With his return and Parker’s injury his ownership has skyrocketed 20% in the past week and will only keep going up. Last season Middleton had the best season of his career averaging 18.2 points, and while he may not mirror those numbers this year he can still help the Bucks. Jabari was helping shoulder a lot of the offensive load alongside All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo (99.9%). Speaking of the ‘Greek Freak’ so far without Jabari he has dropped a career high 41 points and followed that up with a near triple double against Indiana. He will obviously continue to star for Milwaukee and may even step up a notch, which is a scary prospect to consider for opponents.
THERE are a few lesser known fantasy guys like Michael Beasley (5.2%), Mizra Teletovic (4.1%) and Greg Monroe (82.1%) could all be in line for more minutes now too. Out of those three I expect Beasley to be the biggest beneficiary and he has shown in the past he has shown he can contribute with more time on the floor. Thon Maker (1.5%) started against the Lakers without Jabari and could be in line for some more time, but the rookie needs time to develop before considering him as a serious fantasy piece.
CLEARLY there are many players who are going to benefit from Parker’s injury from a fantasy perspective, but some stand out above others. To replace Parker you should try and get Middleton first. While he may not replicate the same numbers from last season he will still be able to produce enough to be worthy of a roster spot in your fantasy squad. Secondly Beasley is the guy to go after. He can average 25+ minutes and score double digits, while putting up numbers in other areas too. Finally consider Brogdon as an option if you have a need at guard and he can recapture the production from a month ago.
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