THERE are three certainties in life. Death, taxes and the last two hours of the NBA trade deadline going bananas. With a ton of fantasy relevant players changing teams in the past week, today’s FF will focus on the impact of all the important moves. Let’s get it!
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*All fantasy stats and numbers are based on ESPN format fantasy leagues.
- PRE DEADLINE DAY
THE fantasy fallout of the Blake-to-Detroit trade has played itself out over the past week and we have a pretty good idea of what to expect from here on out. Blake Griffin is still doing Blake Griffin things (21.5 points, 7.8 rebounds and 6.3 assists in four games with Detroit), but the biggest beneficiary of Griffin’s trade to the Pistons might be his new All-Star teammate. Andre Drummond is averaging an absurd 18.4 points and 20.2 rebounds in the last five and is thriving as defenses turn their main focus onto Griffin. The man who swapped teams with Griffin, Tobias Harris has scored 24 and 19 in his two games as a Clipper so far and should keep up his solid 2017-18 production.
IT’S also worth mentioning that Nikola Mirotic, who was traded to the Pelicans had a huge game on debut with 18 points, 12 rebounds and four steals. He is worth picking up off your waiver wire if you need a solid points, rebounds and 3’s contribution.
- FREE WILLY!
Willy Hernangomez got his wish moving teams after a lack of opportunity with the Knicks this year. The Charlotte Hornets were the ones who took the chance on the 2nd year pro and despite Dwight Howard occupying the middle Hernangomez will still almost certainly play more than the nine minutes a game he is averaging this season. Still, he doesn’t offer a lot of fantasy value unless Howard or Cody Zeller goes down.
- THE CAVS BLOW IT UP 1.0
THE first big deadline day trade was a three-team deal that saw the Cavs acquire Rodney Hood and Geroge Hill, Derrick Rose and Jae Crowder become members of the Utah Jazz and the Kings land Joe Johnson and Iman Shumpert. The biggest beneficiary of this trade is easily De’Aaron Fox. Sacramento will hand him the keys to the franchise after he jostled for minutes with George Hill all season. Expect to see Fox play as much as he possibly can to close out the season and put numbers on the board (shoutout to Pusha T).
A lot of the players involved in the actual trade will still be on waiver wires and a change of scenery isn’t likely to impact their fantasy output greatly. It might be worth watching their role, but the only one I’m intrigued in is Rodney Hood. While his volume might drop there a high chance his efficiency will improve alongside LeBron as he fights it out for the starting spot in ‘The Land’. At absolute worst, he’s worth adding to your watchlist if no-one has claimed him yet.
Image from slcdunk.com
- RETURN OF THE FLASH
DWYANE Wade in a Heat jersey is something we all thought we would see again before he retired and Miami/Cleveland turned those dreams into reality yesterday. With Dion Waiters out the likes of Josh Richardson, Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington had been taking on the majority of the responsibilities left over, but Wade will probably eat into those minutes in some capacity. However, it’s unlikely that Wade outperforms his current averages of about 11 points, three rebounds and three assists in 23 minutes a game. If you own him he’s worth keeping, if not you won’t lose sleep over not having him on your squad.
- THE CAVS BLOW IT UP 2.0
I can say with confidence now that the Isaiah Thomas experiment was an epic failure. The Cavs sent him and Channing Frye to the Lakers yesterday and gained Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance in return. IT has still only played 15 games this season, with his best still yet to come making a potential buy-low candidate. Whether he will start or not is uncertain but Thomas will benefit from not playing in LeBron’s shadow, that much is certain.
FROM Cleveland’s perspective, Clarkson will likely see his numbers and minutes decrease as he becomes the team’s sixth man option. Similarly to Hood, he may see a rise in efficiency and there’s a slight chance that he can steal the starting spot from Hill. At least while Kevin Love is out, Nance will likely see a boost in playing time and could be a great late season steal.
- FROM THE CONGO TO NYC
DEVIN Harris to the Nuggets and Doug McDermott to the Mavs has very little impact on the fantasy world. However, the third part of this deal that saw Emmanuel Mudiay become a New York Knick is very interesting. If he can steal the starting role in NYC, there’s a real chance he can help your team to close out the season. Annually improving as a shooter, Mudiay averages 17.2 points, 4.3 rebounds and 5.8 assists per 36 minutes this year. If the Knicks give him a chance to shine all signs point to him delivering in a big way.
Image from hoopshabit.com
- ELFRID PAYTON (AND HIS HAIR) HEAD TO THE DESERT
IN the final year of his rookie deal the Magic dealt Elfrid Payton to Phoenix. While it’s a bit cloudy exactly what Payton will produce for the Suns, the trade opens up a ton of minutes and opportunities for D.J. Augustin. In his first game starting for Orlando, he put 18 points and nine assists. He probably won’t average those numbers but 15 points and 6-7 assists are achievable averages from here on out.
- IT wouldn’t be another week without injuries. The biggest one was Kristaps Porzingis (Knicks, PF/C) suffering an ACL tear ruling him out for at least the rest of this year. Darren Collison (Pacers, PG), Malcolm Brogdon (Bucks, PG/SG) and Trevor Ariza (Rockets, SF) are other relevant names who have been bitten by the injury bug since our last check-in.
- WITH Mike Conley out for the rest of the season, Andrew Harrison (Grizzlies, PG) seems set to be the Grizzlies starter for the rest of the year. Averaging 30 minutes in the last week, he will likely fluctuate in production, but can still be a good source of points, assists and shooting percentages from here on out.
- DANILO Gallinari (Clippers, SF/PF), Jarrett Allen (Nets, C) and Josh Jackson (Suns, SF/SG) are the three most added players in the last week, but of the trio, I would only trust Gallo. The other two rooks could be hot for a while, but chances are they will come back to Earth soon.