THANKSGIVING meant there were no NBA games today, but of course as tradition has it we were blessed with three NFL games. Those matches may or may not have decided your Week 12 fate, which could in turn decide you playoff aspirations. Thanksgiving aside, there were another six days in the past week that I need to analyse to help you get the upper hand in the fantasy sport world!

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*All fantasy stats and numbers are based on ESPN format fantasy leagues.


NBA

  • NO NBA games yesterday didn’t mean there was nothing to talk about from the six days before that. Despite his low shooting numbers, Russell Westbrook (Thunder, PG) probably deserved the honours of the best player since the last Fantasy Friday, with the reigning MVP averaging a triple-double (23.7 pts, 11.7 rebs & 10 asts) in three games last week.
  • A few weeks ago I talked about keeping the faith in Julius Randle (Lakers, PF). Obviously, everyone’s situation is different, but I’m changing my stance now. With Larry Nance (Lakers, PF) due back sometime in December, don’t be sucked in by Randle’s one great showing a week (usually followed by a 8/5 game in 12 minutes). You can do better.
  • A similar thing can be said for the players in the Phoenix Suns frontcourt. With Greg Monroe arriving in town via an Eric Bledsoe trade, he joins a muddled group that includes Maquesse Chriss, Alex Len, Dragan Bender and Tyson Chandler. If I had to rank them Len would be the safest bet followed by Chandler, Monroe, Chriss (foul trouble hampers his ceiling) and then Bender. Again with Phoenix rumoured in a potential DeAndre Jordan trade, save yourself the headaches and look elsewhere.

Fantasy Friday - 24th November 1Image from nba.com

MUST ADD – Spencer Dinwiddie, Brooklyn Nets, PG
DINWIDDIE is balling out of his mind with Russell and Lin injured. Averaging 16.5 points and 9.2 assists in four straight starts, he looms as a solid pickup while Brooklyn struggles to cope with their depth at point guard. With his place in the lineup set in stone, the time to pounce on Dinwiddie’s production while you can.
Other candidates: Kris Dunn (Bulls, PG, 32.0%) & Rodney Hood (Jazz, SG, 37.7%)

MUST DROP – Buddy Hield, Sacramento Kings, SG
I was one of the many who fell for Hield’s potential entering this season. The Kings sophomore loomed as their potential No. 1 scoring option for Sacramento this year, but after losing his starting spot to the uninspiring Garrett Temple it’s time to give up on the Hield experiment.
Other candidates: Malcolm Brogdon (Bucks, PG/SG, 66.1%) & Terry Rozier (Celtics, PG, 17.2%)

INJURY NEWS – THE biggest injury news from the past seven days was Patrick Beverly (Clipper, PG) being ruled out for the rest of the year with a knee injury. Aside from Bevery, Nuggets star singing Paul Millsap could face upwards of three months out of action with a torn wrist ligament. Derrick Rose (Cavs, PG) and Markelle Fultz (76ers, PG) are both still out for at least a few more weeks and Nicolas Batum (Hornets, SG/SF) reinjured his elbow, an injury that kept him out for the first 12 games of the season. His status remains day to day.

Fantasy Friday - 24th November 2Image from faketeams.com

NFL

  • THREE Thanksgiving day games provided us with plenty of fantasy relevant guys going head to head. Wide receivers were the flavour of the day with Detroit’s Marvin Jones (22.9, 28.9 PPR), Washington’s Jamison Crowder (20.1, 27.1 PPR) and Los Angeles’ Keenan Allen (23.2, 34.2 PPR) with the 400+ yard, three touchdown Philip Rivers (Chargers, QB) the leader with 28.9 fantasy points.
  • KEEPING those three Thursday games in mind, the fantasy playoff matchup will be set in under two weeks. If you find yourself on the outside looking in the time to go for it is now. Take into account who has a cruisy fantasy schedule in the coming two weeks and invest in potential waiver wire options to boost your chances of postseason action.
  • AFTER a week of being screwed around it seems like Tyrod Taylor (Bills, QB) will once again start for Buffalo. Head coach Sean McDermott made the puzzling decision to start rookie Nathan Peterman, who threw five first-half interceptions. The Bills aren’t the only ones making a chance at quarterback with Denver relying on Paxton Lynch (Broncos, QB) after Trevor Siemian and Brock Osweiler have both failed miserably this season. Lynch has two career starts with 327 yards, a touchdown and an interception in those 2016 games.

San Francisco 49ers v Denver BroncosImage from broncoswire.usatoday.com

MUST ADD – Greg Olsen, Carolina Panthers, TE
REJOICE fantasy owners, after spending most of the year on the sidelines, one of Cam Newton’s main weapons Greg Olsen is ready to go again. With Kelvin Benjamin in Buffalo now, Carolina now will look for Olsen more than ever as the Panther make their playoff push. If he is starter, then Olsen is a must-start.
Other candidates: Samaje Perine (Redskins, RB, 16.6%) & Jamaal Williams (Packers, RB, 60.7%)

MUST DROP – Cameron Brate, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, TE
THERE was a period of time when Cameron Brate was a favourite target for Buccaneers QB Jamies Winston. With Winston sidelined and Brate’s production taking a hit, the third year Harvard alum, doesn’t warrant a roster spot anymore. If you are scratching at straws for replacements, then his teammate O.J. Howard is worth adding
Other candidates: Lions D/ST (Cowboys, RB, 29.2%) & Will Fuller V (Texans, WR, 66.2%)

INJURY NEWS – BAD news for those stashing David Johnson (Cardinals, RB) on their bench with the superstar halfback being ruled out for the rest of the year. The aforementioned Kelvin Benjamin tweaked his knee against the Chargers and his status is up in the air this weekend. Jay Cutler (Dolphins, QB), Jake Elliott (Eagles, K) and Devonta Freeman (Falcons, RB) are all unlikely to see the field this week too, and Jared Goff’s favourite target Robert Woods (Rams, WR) is slated to be out for at least a couple of weeks.