Thursday, April 07, 2005

The Final Stretch

We’re about two weeks away from the end of the season. Most teams have about 7 or 8 games left … which means that’s how many games your top players have left. Here are a couple of general pointers for how to close out the season successfully.

1. Do NOT leave yourself with leftover games.
This couldn’t be more important. There’s a reason we’ve been posting almost-daily one-day wonders, and it’s because even if you get a 5-point, 2-board night out of some random shooting guard, if it was making up an extra game, that’s 5 more points and 2 more boards than you would have had without him. And now, with so many players sitting out random games, it’s time to make sure you’ve gotten all your games covered. Don’t wait until the last day or two of the season to try and make up games, get it done now.

2. Watch the categories.
We’re going to cover this a little more extensively next week, but if you haven’t been dissecting the standings in your league just yet, you’d better start. Now. Know what categories you’re able to move up in, know what’s out of reach, and know where you’re pretty much stuck in a spot in the standings. This could (and should) have an affect on who you pick up to play your random missing games.

3. Constant news surveillance.
Now more than at any other point in the season, guys appear to be shutting it down. Even minor guys like Speedy Claxton possibly going out for the season opens up doors for guys like Dan Dickau. We’ve been preaching it all year – the most important statistic in fantasy basketball is MINUTES. Minutes are more in flux now than at any other point in the season. Heck, even Aaron McKie saw 30 minutes last night for just the second time all year. Manu Ginobili likely won’t play in back-to-backs again this year, so somebody’s gotta take those minutes - maybe even new Spur Glenn Robinson. These are the sort of things you need to stay on top of.

One-Day Wonders
Pick ‘em up today, so you can play ‘em tomorrow!

G – Gordan Giricek, UTH
With Raja Bell not even joining the Jazz on their road trip this weekend, Giricek is a great play. He put up 14/6/4 last night against Minnesota and should be good for something like that again Friday vs. New Orleans.

F – Othella Harrington, CHI
Othella was a mini-beast in three starts filling in for Eddy Curry last week, averaging 16.6/6.3, albeit with almost no blocks or steals or anything else. Now that he’s likely back from the birth of his child, and Curry is likely still out with his irregular heartbeat, he’s likely – yeah, likely – a good play Friday vs. the Knicks.

C – Clifford Robinson, NJN
Hey, he’s been at least useful in 2 of the last 3 games, and he should at least be good for a three pointer or two.


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