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Home : Fantasy : Perspectives

Fantasy Hardwood

Early season thoughts

Author: Christopher Williams

Rating: 7.9 out of 10
Total votes: 9
Hibachi is back! Throughout the first week of the season Gilbert Arenas is averaging 28.0 PPG 6.7 APG and is shooting 50 % from the field. I think it's safe to say his knees are feeling good. We all knew Arenas had the talent but after only playing 15 games in the last two years who knew if he had the body. But with the Wizards desperate to get back in the playoffs and Arenas' drive to show people he can still play, I would say this is the year he pays off for fantasy owners, but, let's keep our fingers crossed that his body holds up.

Not everyone is as lucky as Gilbert Arenas. It only took a week for Micheal Redd's balky knee to falter. The Milwaukee Bucks expects their injury prone star to be out for at least two weeks after he sprained his left surgically-repaired knee in their home opener. I would sell Redd if I was a fantasy owner, but with the circumstances, that may be easier said than done. With his previous injury history other owners will be scared away from Redd. But with his talent and the likelihood that he was drafted as a starter makes him too valuable to drop. Your best bet: wait until he's healthy and has a good game then trade him away before his knee acts up again.

Not everything is as clear cut as, who's hurt and who's not. Every year surprise players have breakouts, or surefire players become busts. Rookies play like vets and veterans play like rookies. It's never too early to watch trends and try to find a fantasy diamond in the rough.

Danilo Gallinari SF NY Knicks- When a player jacks up 13 three-pointers in one game off the bench and hits 6 of them a lot of people start to look at that player. Let's hope that the people in your league haven't taken notice and already claimed him off waivers. Gallinari has all the makings of a fantasy star in the making. His coach is totally on his side and has given him the green light to shoot whenever he wants. He is now a starter in an up-tempo high scoring offense. And, he leads the league with 19 threes made in 4 games! The major knock on Gallinari is that he isn't a very good defender and is a defensive liability; but on the Knicks who isn't? Anyway stopping your man from scoring doesn't get you any fantasy points. If he's still available in your league take a flier on the young sharp shooter.

Brandon Jennings PG Mil Bucks- Jennings made highlights last year as the first-ever star prep player to skip college and go overseas to play pro-ball before the NBA. Well, now he's making highlights in the NBA by almost being the first player since Oscar Robertson to record a triple double in his first game with 17 points, 9 assists, and 9 rebounds. Then he followed that performance by scoring 24 points. Not to mention with his lighting quick speed, he is a great source of steals. Still recognize that he is a rookie so you have to expect inconsistent play and a lot of turnovers but he should be owned in all but the shallowest leagues.

Channing Frye C Phx Suns- Frye was a star in college in Arizona and has been a bit of an underachiever in his stay in the league. But he has seemed to find a home in the Suns high octane offense and is reaping the benefits and the fantasy goodness. Frye is starting at center next to Amar'e Stoudemire who should take pressure away from Frye both defensively and offensively. Frye has put up great numbers so far: 19.7 PPG and 5.7 RPG. He won't block any shots and his rebounding will be low for a center, which is bad, but he does hit threes at a nice clip. He hit 6 in his last game. I don't expect him to keep up at this level of production but I think he will be serviceable this year. Also keep in mind Amar'e is an injury risk and if he goes down, Frye will benefit, making him worth an add in leagues.

All in all there is so much to learn in this short fantasy season, but it is also too early to make any major decision about the fantasy studs on your team. Be patient with the Jose Calderons and the Al Jeffersons of the league. Yes, these guys have started out slower than expected, but you have to hold on to them. Because you only have two options: trade now and see them go off and put up stats for another team; or, hold on to them until they get hot. The season is still young but it's never too early to make or break your fantasy team.

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