TRIVIA time! Which wide receiver scored 20.6 (non-PPR league) in the first six weeks of the season and then exploded for his first 200+ yard game of the year last week? Correct it was Oakland wideout, Amari Cooper. So you would expect me to be happy that his 33 points were coming my way. The only problem was I was teaching him a lesson by letting him reside on my bench for Week 7. The news in fantasy basketball isn’t much sweeter with my team currently consisting of the injured Kawhi Leonard, Dennis Schroder, Trevor Ariza and Nic Batum. Oh, and I took a flyer on Rondo with my last draft selection. Lord have mercy.
IF you like what you read be sure to check out more SportsbyFry articles by hitting this link. Make sure you keep up to date with the latest Fantasy articles and follow my fan pages on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to never miss a minute of the action!
*All fantasy stats and numbers are based on ESPN format fantasy leagues.
- EASILY the biggest news from the basketball world last week was the dramas surrounding the Phoenix Suns. The fantasy implications of those dramas revolve around Eric Bledsoe and what will happen to him going forward. The combo guard has likely played his final game for the Suns and they are actively trying to shop him after he tweeted ‘I don’t want to be here’ earlier in the week. That opens the door for Mike James to see a boost in numbers as he started the last two games for Phoneix.
- ANOTHER team that was anchored at the bottom of the standings last year, the Lakers continue to run Julius Randle off the bench and start Larry Nance Jr. After starting 73 games last year Randle is only seeing the court for 18.5 minutes through four games. It hasn’t hampered his production too much and he could return to the starting five if he keeps playing the way he is. Don’t give up on him just yet.
Image from hoopshype.com
- IN Cleveland the lineup is being shaken up in an effort to find consistency. First Dwyane Wade joined the second unit with gunslinger J.R. Smith returning to the starting lineup. This may impact Wade’s output and he has struggled to start the year and find his role for the team. Ty Lue then gave LeBron James the nod as the teams starting point guard and James has 26 assists in his two games at PG. Expect the assist totals to continue climbing.
- AARON Gordon’s fantasy stock continues to soar with the Magic forward enjoying a career night in Orlando’s fourth game of the season. Fueled by a personal best five three-pointers he scored a new career-high 41 points against the Nets. He won’t keep up those numbers, but if he can stroke it from outside owners will definitely see a nice boost in his nightly scoring output.
MUST ADD – Darren Collison, Indiana Pacers, PG
IN Indiana’s first five games Darren Collison has been flat out balling. His 15.6 points a night are nice, but it’s his high assist totals that is raising eyebrows. He dropped 11 dimes in his season debut against Brooklyn and followed it up a few games later with 16 dimes in a win over the Timberwolves. If you need point guard help, look no further.
Other candidates: Dejounte Murray (Spurs, PG, 64.6%) & DeMarre Carroll (Nets, SF, 42.0%)
MUST DROP – Willy Hernangomez, New York Knicks, C
HEADING into this season Hernangomez was expected to take another step in his development and play a solid role for the Knicks. That was until the team acquired Enes Kanter in the Carmelo trade. Hernangomez now finds himself fighting just to see the court and hasn’t done much in New York’s first three games to warrant giving him a spot on your roster.
Other candidates: Tim Hardaway Jr (Knicks, SG/SF, 58.0%) & Gorgui Dieng (Timberwolves, PF/C, 64.8%)
Image from postingandtoasting.com
INJURY NEWS – FANTASY superstar Anthony Davis (Pelicans, PF/C) went down against the Blazers yesterday and everyone immediately expected the worst. However, in good news the MRI on his left knee came back negative, keeping him as a day-to-day prospect moving forward. Chris Paul (Rockets, PG) was the other big name bitten by the injury bug, with knee soreness potentially sidelining the future HOFer for up to a month. His replacement for the Clippers Milos Teodosic (Clippers, PG) has been diagnosed with a plantar fascia injury in his left foot, ruling him out indefinitely. Markelle Fultz (76ers, PG), Dennis Schroder (Hawks, PG) and Trevor Ariza (Rockets, SF) are the others dealing with niggling issues that will see them miss a handful of games.
WEEK 8 BYE TEAMS: Green Bay Packers, Arizona Cardinals, New York Giants, Jacksonville Jaguars, Los Angeles Rams, Tennessee Titans
- AS mentioned above Amari Copper (33, 44 PPR) was one of the weeks top scorers after scoring two touchdowns to compliment his 210 receiving yards. Ezekiel Elliott (39.9, 40.9 PPR) had an impressive three score game with 219 all-purpose yards and the honour of top fantasy QB went to none other than MVP favourite Carson Wentz for his four TD, 268 yard game against the Redskins.
- AFTER a glaring lack of red zone targets to start the season, the Falcons threw in Julio Jones’ direction four times against the Patriots. It didn’t translate to a win, but it helped Julio snag his second TD catch of the year and it could translate to a boost in production moving forward.
- THE Ravens defense (28 points!) had arguably their best performance of the season in a 40-0 mauling of the Dolphins in Week 8’s first match. It wasn’t all good news for the Ravens though with Joe Flacco concussed after a massive hit from Kiki Alonso late in the second quarter. Flacco didn’t return to the field and could miss the next week or longer too.
MUST ADD – Kai Forbath, Minnesota Vikings, K
WITH 37 points in the last fortnight Forbath finds himself added by 46% of fantasy owners. His only miss this season came on a 39 yarder against the Lions and Forbath 17 makes are the third most in the league. His missed extra points are a little concerning (11/14 on the year), but with a fixture against the Browns this week expect the big stats to keep coming.
Other candidates: JuJu Smith-Schuster (Steelers, WR, 23.4%) & DeAndre Washington (Raiders, RB, 32.0%)
MUST DROP – Mason Crosby, Green Bay Packers, K
YES that’s right kickers are dominating the fantasy football waiver wire right now. Crosby has failed to score in double digits for the whole season to date and as a result, owners are abandoning ship. Now that Aaron Rodgers isn’t under center his production is likely to dry up even more. Until we can see signs of promise then leave him on the scrrap heap.
Other candidates: Samaje Perine (Redskins, RB, 18.2%) & Martavius Bryant (Steelers, WR, 67.2%)
Image from lombardiave.com
INJURY NEWS – THIS week it was the Arizona Cardinals who lost their quarterback to injury. A broken arm to Carson Palmer will rule him out for at least eight weeks and may mean we have seen the last of the 37-year old. Dan Bailey (Cowboys, K) will miss a few weeks with a groin complain confirmed by head coach Jason Garrett. Other notable names Danny Amendola (Patriots, WR), Leonard Founette (Jaguars, RB) and Golden Tate (Lions, WR) remain under an injury cloud with knee, ankle and shoulder issues respectively.