Tuesday, December 13, 2005

He's Baq.

And when I say "he," apparently I should be saying "they." Because, shock of the year, the day after Shaquille O'Neal returns from injury, Pat Riley returns from the tailor, and both are ready to make someserious impact on your fantasy team. With all the goings on in Miami, let's take a look at who stands to gain and who stands to lose.

Welcome Back, Big Guy!

Dwyane Wade
Nobody is going to be smiling more seeing Shaq back on the floor thanWade, who is now the official #1 guy in South Beach. Wade has been absolutely brilliant in Shaq's absence, putting up 27.3/6.8/6.7 with2.3 steals and 0.8 blocks. He's been looking more like LeBron thanLeBron has (minus the threes), and his value is sky high. And while Shaq's return might hurt his overall numbers, in the long run this is great news for Wade. In taking over the team, he's been attacking the basket like no player this side of Gilbert Arenas, taking the hits and hitting the deck to the tune of 11 FTA per game, second highest in the league behind Allen Iverson. And as much as his ad wants you to believe that every time he falls down, he gets back up, that's just not the case. Remember, it was just 2 years ago that he missed 16 games over the course of the season due to various injuries. Taking some of the scoring onus off of Wade means that he'll be more likelyto stay healthy throughout the year.

Jason Williams
One guy who's really been quiet this year has been Williams, who despite setting a career high in points has seen his assists drop to the lowest point in his career, a paltry 4.7. However, his three point shooting has risen to a new level in terms of percentage, and that's only going to go up with Shaq roaming the paint. His 2.4 3's per game are a career high right now, but that number could get higher.

That's Great, I Guess …

Udonis Haslem
This is a bittersweet adjustment for Haslem. On the one hand, he's clearly been suffering without the Diesel, have trouble finding his shot, getting blocks, and grabbing rebounds, so he should be more effective when he's on the floor. On the other hand, there's the distinct possibility that Shaq might see time on the floor alongside Alonzo Mourning (more on that later), meaning Udonis will spend more time on the bench and less time on the court. Those two things working against each other means Haslem should be just as valuable now as he has been thus far.

Antoine Walker
This is another plus/minus situation. On the plus, the return of Riley means that Walker will get every chance to show his stuff, as Riley will want to prove that he didn't waste millions of dollars on his in the free agent market. On the minus, just like Haslem, Walker might have some trouble getting the 30 mpg he's enjoyed so far. Also, as much as Riley the GM will want Walker on the floor, Riley the coach might get real tired of Walker's playing style. This might be a slight downgrade in the end, but for now, there's not much of an effect.

There's Not Enough Room on This Team for the Two of Us.

Alonzo Mourning
Zo has enjoyed a career resurrection this year, at least on the defensive side, where he's amassed 3.7 bpg in just 28.5 minutes. However, his points (10.7) and boards (7.9) are pretty lame, especially next to his killer 51% FT%. He is, however, one of Riley's favorite players, so he should find his way on to the court for a good 20 mpg, with some of that time being spent alongside Shaq. Still, 20mpg should knock him out of any potential fantasy value for your squad. Hey, he had a good run, but all good things come to an end.

Shaquille O'Neal
Oh yeah – that guy. The time is now – and I mean right now – to sell high on Shaq. Let me explain: The one reason that Pat Riley came back to coach the Heat is so that he can win an NBA title. And the biggest component (both literally and figuratively) to reaching that goal is a healthy O'Neal in the playoffs. Playing in the East, he'snot going to have to win 60 games to have a decent seed in the playoffs, and what that means is he's gonna take it easy on the Diesel. Shaq's 34 mpg last year were a career low, and this year, I'd be surprised to see Shaq top 32 or even 30 mpg. This is a great "sell fake low" candidate, as his perceived value is probably higher than his true value right now.

5 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

i just wanted to know what you guys thought about the whole artest situation that has suddenly brewed... would you drop someone like, say haslem, for danny granger's potential?

1:48 PM  
Blogger bv said...

right now, it's probably too early to make a move like that. you don't really know who's going to come in for artest, who's going to get what kind of minutes, etc. hold off until indy actually moves him and then see what happens.

3:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i believe one guy that will benefit for the time being is Sjax. As long as Artest is on the inactive list, Sjax will get a boost in at least 3's, pts, and perhaps stls. He might even be a good option after the trade depending on who they get for artest.

3:27 PM  
Anonymous G said...

who do you think is good value for shaq in a "sell fake low" situation? with bosh gaining C eligibility, i've got a new #1 C and could conceivably trade shaq for a true #1 PG which i sorely need. i have a glut of PGs but they are largely 3rd tier or lower. another manager has 4 quality PGs in kidd, cassell, billups and baron davis. however, he's in fairly good negotiation position as his #1 C is camby.

12:25 AM  
Blogger bv said...

baron would be a great guy to target in a trade for shaq. shaq's biggest liability - FT% - is just as big a liability for Davis, and the injury risk is about equal. I wouldn't trade Billups or Kidd for Shaq, and Cassell just isn't in Shaq's league fantasy-wise. Still, Davis is probably your best bet.

12:35 AM  

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