Booms, Busts, and Battlestar Galactica: NBA Week 11+12
Spring brings new and wonderful things for us to enjoy.
WandaVision gives way to Falcon and the Winter Soldier; the first half of the NBA turns into the second half.
The All-Star Break gave fantasy managers a two-fer week to make up for the six-day absence of NBA games. Here some players who were able to keep their rhythm through the midway point siesta and others that even the break couldn't help.
Kelly Olynyk Forward/Center Miami Heat
Miami is starting to look like Bubble Miami and one of the factors is a more involved Kelly Olynyk. The former Celtic has filled the stat sheet the last two weeks, averaging 14.4 points, 7.8 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 2.2 steals and 2.4 made threes. He's also shooting 56.3 percent from the field and 85.7 from the charity stripe while only turning the ball over 1.4 times in that same time span.
That is eight categories (seven in 8-cat) that he is positively contributing to. With a firm grasp on a starting spot, logging 32.3 minutes the last five games and ranked 68 in 9-cat Yahoo leagues, he is worth a pickup. (44 percent rostered in Yahoo leagues)
Chris Boucher Forward/Center Toronto Raptors
The Raptors are trending towards irrelevant this season, but Chris Boucher's emergence has been a positive for the struggling team. The lanky Oregon product has averaged 22.0 points on 58.7 percent shooting, 6.4 rebounds, 1.8 made threes and 1.6 blocks.
While Toronto is last in the Atlantic Division, it can still make a push for the Play-In Tournament and they will need all hands on deck in order to accomplish it. Chris Boucher might be the one they lean on to answer the call.
Robert Williams Center Boston Celtics
The man Celtics fans affectionately refer to as Time Lord for his inability to show up on time to events early in his Boston stint is making the most of his minutes on the court. Williams has been all over the court the last four games, averaging 10.3 points on 76.2 percent shooting, 8.0 rebounds, 3.8 blocks per game. He's also been a surprising playmaker, throwing in a bonus 2.5 assists per game in the same stretch for his fantasy managers.
Williams is providing all of that production at just over 20 minutes per game. If he starts logging 30 or more minutes consistently, we could be looking at a blooming fantasy star.
Danilo Gallinari Forward Atlanta Hawks
Injuries and a new bench role have slowed Gallinari's integration into the Atlanta Hawks roster, but it looks like he's found his groove with his new team. He's averaging 17.2 points while making 3.4 threes, six rebounds and 1.2 steals the last five games.
The 32-year-old isn't going to outshine Trae Young or the other young stars on the team, but he is still looked to as one of the team's more consistent shot makers and will continue to get opportunities to put up numbers while De'Andre Hunter is sidelined with a knee injury.
Serge Ibaka Forward/Center Los Angeles Clippers
Despite posting his worst numbers since 2013, Ibaka has been a source of consistency for managers all year, but he's hit a bit of a skid midway through the season. He's been held scoreless in two of his last four games and averaged 5.8 points on 40 percent shooting, 5.8 rebounds and 0.5 made threes in that time. Granted, one of those games, he did leave early due to back spasms.
Long gone are the days of the Congolese dominating on the defensive end, but he's still capable of finishing in the top-100 in 9-Cat formats. Hold him despite this slump.
James Wiseman Center Golden State Warriors
Wiseman is starting to learn that being a rookie is tough. Sometimes, you play a lot and sometimes you don't. Unfortunately for him and fantasy managers, that can lead to uneven performances.
The last two weeks, Wiseman has averaged 20.3 minutes per game. Twice he was held under 12 minutes. In that time he has averaged 11.8 points, six rebounds, 0.5 blocks and shooting 40 percent from the free-throw line.
He's a promising rookie, but even he goes through the struggle. We'll see whether this is just a blimp or if the rookie wall has claimed another victim.
Bobby Portis Forward/Center Milwaukee Bucks
Portis stepped up while Donte DiVincenzo and Jrue Holiday were out, but since the team has gotten healthier, Bobby Buckets has taken a step back.
He's only averaged 18.3 minutes the last four games resulting in an average of 8.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and nearly nothing in every other category. Portis is able to step up when someone goes down, but if the Bucks are healthy, you should look for other options to roster.
Keldon Johnson Forward San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs put LaMarcus Aldridge on the shelf, opening things up for other players to perform well. Keldon Johnson, who has been a surprising contributor with some big games, was looked to as a player who could capitalize on the opportunity. He has yet to do that.
Since coming back from the health and safety protocols, Johnson has averaged 10.2 points, 2.8 rebounds and 0.8 made three-pointers. He has also only been playing 20.2 minutes per contest which could be impacting his chances to produce.
Gregg Popovich is still experimenting with post-Aldridge life and that could mean inconsistent minutes for everyone not named DeMar DeRozan. Proceed with caution when considering Johnson for your lineup.