This week, we’ve seen the rise of New York’s new darling point guard, Jeremy Lin. Many managers in fantasy have bought into the hype and have been pretty much bullish on him, while others are still skeptical and fear a sharp decline somewhere down the road. Nonetheless, Lin’s fantasy stock has shaken the market like a Facebook IPO announcement.
For this week, let us take a look at some of the losers and gainers on the fantasy basketball point guard market and analyze what to do with them.
Jeremy Lin, NY – For three straight games, the New York Knicks have rallied behind the impressive performance of Lin. He’s scored 25, 28, and 23 points in each of those wins respectively. Scoring, check. He didn’t win those games by himself. He appears to have been able to understand and execute Mike D’Antoni’s offensive sets pretty well as he distributed the ball well dishing out seven, eight, and 10 assists. Passing, check. He’s also averaging 1.6 steals per game over his last three. Defense, check. Looks like a good (great?) point guard right there.
Factors that skeptics fear about buying into the “LINsane” hype:
- Two of those wins and good performances were against New Jersey and Washington, two teams not really known for excellent defense.
- He’s quick, but teams will eventually catch on to his moves and will figure out ways to shut him down. Especially since he clearly has been the catalyst for the Knicks’ recent success.
- He (or at least this improved version of himself) has yet to play alongside Amar’e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony. Once active, those two players will take away a big number of touches from Lin. Therefore, his scoring averages are likely to drop. How much, we will see.
- Baron Davis is set to eventually play for the Knicks once his conditioning and health issues are under control. He’s a veteran who is established as a capable passer and floor general. Will Davis push Jeremy back to the bench?
As great as he has performed so far and wonderful it has been to follow his Cinderella, feel-good story; Jeremy Lin is not a “Blue Chip” investment in fantasy basketball. It’s not because he is a bad basketball player or he doesn’t fit with the Knicks. In fact no other Knick has shown potential to execute “the D’Antoni system”. At the end of the day, we will all have to accept the fact that Carmelo Anthony is too much of a ball hog and simply kills the system. When he returns (in about a couple of weeks), Lin’s value will take a huge hit. At best, Lin will get into a timeshare situation with Baron Davis and the reduced minutes will also hamper his value. He’s just a victim of the Knicks having to continue living with the consequences of its decisions. He still has the potential to carry the team into a new era of success, but that’s farther down the horizon. The Knicks now don’t need to chase Steve Nash in free agency this summer. If they do, it will be most likely for about two seasons, enough for him to impart his knowledge to the young Lin.
Think of him as a promising company during the dot com boom. Ride him like the wind while he’s hot. One more week. Sell him high. Get what you can, and go on.
D.J. Augustin, CHA - Augustin is projected to come back either late this week or early next week. He should resume his PG duties and will likely share the backcourt with Kemba Walker. He was a good source of treys (1.5) and some assists (6.6) prior to his injury. Expect him to pick where he left off.
If he was tossed into the FA pool in your league, you may want to consider picking Augustin now.
Tyreke Evans, SAC – His slump is finally over and he’s been able to produce closer to what he was expected to deliver based on draft day ADP. With Marcus Thornton now healthy, Reke has someone to share the opposing defensive pressure with. He has someone he can pass to who can convert on a regular basis and this should improve and stabilize his assist averages.
Evans will still be in for some more ups and downs, but for the near, foreseeable future his outlook remains good.
Jordan Farmar, NJ - Farmar has been very productive as the Nets’ sixth man, while Brook Lopez, Marshon Brooks, and Mehmet Okur are all out of commission with injuries. He’s a solid contributor of points and threes while he has the playing time at his disposal.
Lopez and Brooks are due back in a few weeks. Ride Farmar while his streak is there. He won’t remain this productive throughout the remainder of the season. Package him as a value-kicker in a trade proposal to maximize the return value you can get in the deal.
Greivis Vasquez, NO – Jarrett Jack has returned from injury and has taken back the starting point guard gig. Vasquez’ best future outlook at the moment is some productive minutes at SG and sparing time at PG, relieving Jack. While he was great as a starter, he now overstayed his fantasy welcome on most teams.
Drop him for the best, hottest FA in the pool. Stash him only in very deep leagues. When Eric Gordon finally returns to action, Vasquez’ value will plummet even further.
Tony Parker, SA – Manu Ginobilli is on his way back from a broken digit in his shooting hand and will drastically reduce Parker’s opportunities for 30-point outings down the road.
Keep Tony. He’s still solid for the remainder of the season. Just be sure to recalibrate your expectations.
Brandon Jennings, MIL – He was having a career year until he hit a three-game slump (so far). He’s failed to score in double figures in two of his last three games and has managed to average less than a trey per game over that period.
Buy low on Jennings if you can. He should recover soon enough and may just get refreshed after the all-star break. Take advantage of currently disgruntled owners and make a move before he bounces back.