The return of Byron J. Mullens!

By Jeff Rosenberg – Staff Writer

Welcome back everyone. This week we shift back to the East. Before we dive into the typical facets of my weekly article, lets kick this Eastern Conference write-up off by paying homage to The King. LeBron James put on a clinic last night at the Triple A in Miami, posting 31/8/8 with two steals. He made his first eight field goals, and was an absolute enigma for the Bobcats D. Amazing night for LeBron, even if he did miss a jumper in the lane (13-14 from the field). Good news for James owners and Pat Riley, LBJ has not yet peaked. Better days ahead.

Back to the matter at hand. Lets get into it…

BEASTS OF THE EAST

(Eastern Conference Players under 50% owned, endorsed by me)

SG/SF Kyle Singler (DET) (16% Owned): Since the Rudy Gay trade (Jan. 30th), Singler has drawn the start at the three for the Pistons in all four of their games, getting 30, 36, 40 and 25 minutes. While he had a lackluster game last night @NY (5/2/1 with one steal), the minutes are there for him. In the three starts prior to last night, Singler was averaging 12/5/0.5 with 1.3 blocks/steals/threes per game. Very solid numbers, with equally solid potential available for the former Blue Devil thanks to the latest minutes boost and departure of Tayshaun Prince. Keep an eye on Singler.

PF/C Taj Gibson (CHI) (26% Owned): Joakim Noah is out indefinitely. Carlos Boozer is banged up (and went 4-12 with 10 points and five boards last night). Remember Taj? In the three games that Noah’s been out, Gibson has averaged 45+ minutes, 15.0 points, 13.0 rebounds (including 13 total offensive rebounds over that stretch), 1.7 assists, .7 steals and 3.3 blocks. Those are must start numbers. Obviously, Noah is the key here, and that may work to Gibson’s advantage. The Bulls are comfortably settled amongst the top Eastern Conference teams, with only four games left until the All-Star break (in which the Bulls will have a full five days of rest between games). Noah suffered from plantar fasciitis in 2009-2010, and ended up missing 18 games. Looks to me that the Bulls will keep Noah out through the break, making Gibson a nice plug and play this week and next. As long as Noah (or Boozer) is out, Gibson is a must-start.

PF/C Byron Mullens (CHA) (27% Owned): Though I thought he was more marketable when he was better known as B.J. Mullens, this Byron version seems a little more reliable. Mullens returned Monday night @Miami and played a surprising 28 minutes. Not surprising because he isn’t expected to play that much (he’s expected to play 30+ when proven healthy), it’s surprising because reports from Charlotte had him only playing +/-15 minutes Monday night, and he nearly doubled that number in his return. The artist formerly known as B.J. dropped 12 points on 5-14 shooting (2-5 from 3) with 9 rebounds, one assist, two steals and a block. As the season goes on, I’m expecting all of the same numbers with points in the mid-to-high teens. 27% Ownership is just unacceptable. I can’t imagine there being a player with higher ability than Beej on your league’s wire. Make the add and don’t look back.

SG/SF Nick Young (PHI) (31% Owned): .449/.885 percentages, 14.0/3.2/1.6/0.9/0.5 with 1.5 threes per game over the last 30 days in an average of 29 minutes per. Ok, but what has he done for me lately? Last 14 he’s at a full 2.0 threes and 17.7 points in 35 minutes per game, while all the other stats see increases (although his FG% is down .002). Last night, Young went 7-15 15/6/2/4/2. You are not dyslexic. That’s 15 points, six rebounds, two dimes, FOUR STEALS and TWO BLOCKS; all of which came in 36:20 minutes. Where has this been all season? Jason Richardson (who is 38% owned) who has been in and out of the 6ers lineup with injuries has held Young’s minutes down all year. However, Philly insiders are now saying that when Richardson does return, it’ll likely be to a diminished bench role, leaving Young in the starting lineup due to his recent surge. Young’s the guy to own here. If you have Richardson, please make the swap. Young looks like a very good add ROS.

Abandon Ship…

(Eastern Conference players +35% owned, and I have no clue why)

SF Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (CHA) (65% Owned): Gilchrist is the best of the bunch this week (though, once you read on, that’s not a compliment at all), but that ownership percentage is way too high (I’d hope for it to be cut in half). While it’s attractive to have an SF getting 9.6/5.9 per game, you’d hope that SF could crack double digits for you once in a while in points (hasn’t dropped 10 points since Jan. 14th, has scored 20+ just three times this season). The #2 overall pick has great potential, but it won’t be realized during your 2013 fantasy season. By the way, he’s concussed and not expected to play for the rest of this week… and my boy B.J. came back last night and looks to regain his #1 spot in the Bobcat offense (as said as that is, it’s B.J.’s, and he’s proud of it). If you can grab one of this week’s BEASTS, cut MKG all day.

PF Kris Humphries (BKN) (51% Owned): Can’t even formulate a blurb for this one. More than 50% owned? The guy isn’t even a Kardashian any more? Shooting 35.7% with 3.8 points and 4.8 rebounds over the last 30. Unlike Jay-Z, you CAN drop Humphries from your team. Whether you decide to pick up a replacement player for your team is up to you (either way, you will see beneficial results).

PG/SG Jordan Crawford (WAS) (46% Owned): Bradley Beal’s out and John Wall has a glass frame. Pick up Jordan Crawford?! Not a bad thought, but it just hasn’t worked out. Crawford has put up 24 points, five rebounds, four assists, one steal and two blocks (both last night…hmmm) over the last five games (Beal’s entire absence). Crawford quite simply, missed his opportunity. Beal is reportedly getting closer to full health, and while we don’t know what he’ll look like when he comes back, I just cannot recommend keeping Crawford any longer. Cut him now.

PF/C Glen Davis (ORL) (38% Owned): Boy have I eaten my words since my “Catfish, Lobster or Shrimp” article a few weeks ago. I had Nikola Vucevic facing a severe dropoff in production upon the return of Big Baby. In the eight games Davis played when he came back from injury, he averaged 12.4/5.4/2.7/0.7/0.4. Nowhere near the guy he was before he got injured. And now? Out again with a fractured left foot (out 8-12 weeks). Done for the fantasy season. Cut A$AP.

EAST RUN DOWN

Bobcats’ Jeffery Taylor went 4-8 for 10/2/0 with a steal and a block in 28 minutes. The guy plays PG/SG/SF, and could be quite valuable because of that versatility if he can keep these minutes… Knicks C Tyson Chandler has secured at least 20 rebounds in his last three games (and Garnett is the starting center for the East over the Knickerbocker, go figure); Chandler’s teammate J.R. Smith air-balled a free throw last night, despite shooting 79% from the line on the season… Bulls’ guard Marco Belinelli dropped 24 points in 24 minutes @Indy last night. Worth a look?… Detroit’s new PG Jose Calderon made his Pistons debut Monday night with 15 points and 3 dimes on 26 and a half minutes… ESPN’s Dunk of the Night from last night featured an alley-oop reverse throw down by the Pacers’ Paul George (assist by George Hill); highly recommended… Jonas Valanciunas didn’t make the article this week, though I do still love his upside for the ROS. He did get sonned by Caron Butler a few days ago though, as Butler faked the Lithuanian out with a hand shake that led to a Butler steal with seconds left in the Raptors’ blow out victory over Butler’s CP3-less Clippers. Jonas still has no idea what happened on that one… Low scoring affair in the Philly/Orlando game last night. Philly embarrassed E’Twuan Moore and company, holding the Lady Magicians to 61 total points.

Lastly don’t forget to hit me up in the Comments section below and to follow me on Twitter @Jewish_JeffSee, y’all!

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23 Comments

  1. I dropped Kyle Lowry for Korver. For now anyhow it seems like Lowry is just an assist man for Gay and DeRozan or whoever, but Lowry’s not the one exploding for 30 plus fantasy points a night….more like 15, I can get that from Korver and I need a SG anyways.Thoughts? Who do you like better between L.Sanders and Taj Gibson until Noah comes back?

  2. Hello,

    I’m having a problem with my lineup tomorrow in my 14 team, 9 cat, roto league. If you could only play two players from the list below, who would you choose? Also, should I sit Batum to play another one of these guys? Batum has been really bad since suffering his wrist injury.

    E.BLEDSOE @ORL
    N.YOUNG vIND
    E.MOORE vLAC
    K.LEONARD @MIN
    T.SPLITTER @MIN

    Thanks,
    Adrian

  3. Is the upside of Jonas enough to drop Ro Lo for? I keep holding on in case Ant Davis gets hurt again, but I was just wondering if I should move on. Thanks

  4. I was just offered Mayo and Dwight for my Sanders and Love. I’ve been looking to move Kevin Love, but I’m not very excited about Dwight Howard. Should I reject, accept, or counter offer (I’m interested in his Pierce/Hickson)?

    Here is my current team (14 team H2H, 10 cat – currently in 1st place) –

    PG – Lillard, Felton, Nash, IT2
    SG – Klay
    SF – Melo, Paul George
    PF – Sanders, Love, Taj
    C – Pekovic, Drummond

    Thanks guys!

  5. @Jethro Be patient… Lowry > Korver for sure. It’s not even a question… give him a chance to prove it to you. Same with Larry Sanders. As I said, Gibson’s a plug and play until Noah comes back. Larry has proven he’s a real talent this year (despite recent struggles). Keep the faith in Larry! I’d stay put on both.

    @Adrian Wow, it’s a tough scenario there… I like all those guys ROS (besides E’Twuan! haha). I’d recommend looking at your opponent’s strengths on the season, and their rest of the week schedule compared to yours. Base your decision on that. If you’re going to be short bigs/rebounds/blks, you’ll def want to play Splitter. If you’re going to be short dimes/pgs you’ll want to play Bledsoe (and maybe Moore depending how desperate). If you need 3s, Kawhi/Young will have to be in there. If I’m making a blind decision, I’m going to say Splitter and Young. In reference to Batum, his points are down but his rebounds/dimes are at like 7/8 over the last 30 days since his scoring is down. The guy’s still a stud (and is playing with a hurt wrist). I do not advise benching him for anyone… if he’s playing in real life, he’s a must start in fantasy

    @Colin While I do like Jonas’ upside more and more every day, I can’t advise a speculative drop on R. Lopez (still averaging 10/5 and a block and great %s last 30). Jonas still has Bargnani hanging around, in a situation that’ll need to play out before we’re sure on his minutes. Don’t cut Robin…

    @TeenWolf Wow. As I’m sure you know, my ranking on Love is close to 0 ROS, so anything you can get for him is a home run to me. Mayo/Dwight for Love/Sanders is actually a good trade, but I agree with your counter offer and would prefer Hickson/Pierce. If you can pull off the counter, I’d do it for sure. If not, the original offer is good for you too (again, Love has 0 value… don’t see him playing rest of this fantasy year, while Dwight is a lot more likely, and I have Mayo a lot better than Sanders ros)… Good luck!

  6. Would you trade Galinari for Dragic?
    I already have Ty Law and Faried as well from Denver.
    My other PG are CP3, Ty Lawson, and Darren Collison.

    Thanks!

  7. @T$ Welcome back… can’t advise you to do that, despite Dragic trending up under Lindsey Hunter. Gallo is on fire. If you’re set on cashing out, or just adding a PG, look for Dragic plus another solid/useable piece… or a 2for2 where you’re clearly upgrading the 2nd piece

  8. PG – Irving SG – Dudley G – Conley
    SF – Melo PF – Pau F – Iggy
    C – Asik C – Monroe
    UTIL – Bledsoe UTIL – Jordan
    BN – Hawes BN – Howard BN – Dunleavy

    I am below 7th in BLK,FT%,TO.None of my players are drawing much of any trade interest.To the point the last offer I saw was DeRozan for Pau.

    I have to bump up in atleast 2 of the 3 to have a shot.As I am in 4th, 10 pts behind 2nd. If you were me, what is your play here? Any names come to mind to target in trades?

    Biyombo,Dalambert(waivers until 2/6),Mullens,Patterson look to be the only big options on waivers.

  9. Thanks for the advice Jeff, Galo was hot but I was thinking about moving a Denver player to create some diversity.
    I originally offered Collison and Faried for Dragic, and he countered wanting Galo.

    How do you feel about Galo and Collison for Dragic and Bogut?

    He also has Nate Robin and Butler but not sure if they have long term value.

    Or I can just hold. How do you feel about having 3 players from the same team on your roster?

    Thanks Jeff!

  10. @LewbJob Mullens is your man. Low TOs, high percentages, 1 block per game. Dunleavy’s the likely cut.

    @T$ Gotcha, forgot the DEN 3 Player factor. I try to stay away from stocking up on one team, but Galo/Faried/Lawson is a solid three to have if you’re in that situation. I dislike the Galo/Collison for Dragic/Bogut offer even more than the prior one. (I’m not a believer in Bogut, never want him on my team… biggest injury risk in the league). If those are your only trade prospects, I’d hold. Galo is the truth, don’t sell him short.

  11. Doesn’t that kill me a bit flexibility wise adding another PF/C for an SG/SF? Especially since when healthy i can’t get all of Dwight,Pau,Monroe,Asik,Hawes,Jordan,Mullens in lineup without benching 1 of Dudley/Iggy/Bledsoe? Which could hurt me in other categories in long run.

  12. This is not an Eastern Conference question, but when do you think is the best time to stash Mo Williams? I owned him before his injury and I liked his flexibility as a PG/SG and his assits (about 6/game). I would most likely drop Taj Gibson for him (even though I want to ride Taj till Noah returns). Please help me with this dilemma. Thanks!

  13. My team: 12-team H2H points ESPN league.

    PG: Irving, Lowry, Jennings, Lillard, Knight*, Ja.Crawford
    SG: Batum*, Afflalo*, Knight*, Korver*, Kawhi*, Ja.Crawford*
    SF: Batum*, Afflalo*, Korver*, Kawhi*
    PF: KG* Pau*
    C: Hibbert, Pau*, KG*

    This might be a stupid question, but i gotta ask it… -> 1. Would you trade away Pau, Lillard and Jamal for Kobe and Favors? 2. Who is better ROS? KG or Pau?

  14. Who is a better play up until All Star break? Nate Robinson or

    Who is a better play from now thru All Star break? Nate Robinson or Korver?( I assume Robinson will be used until the 14th, then Rose will come back, correct?)

  15. yoo. what should i do with matt barnes?? do i hang on to him or drop him for jerryd bayless, zeller, beal, robin lopez, delfino, hayward, aminu, jimmy buttler ?? 14 team 9cat.

    my team:
    pg: deron williams, george hill,
    sg: james harden, monta ellis, eric gordon,
    sf: matt barnes, kawhi leonard, earl clark
    pf: boozer, favors
    c: gortat, taj gibson

  16. @Lewb definitely hurts the flexibility, but you’re looking to add 2 of those categories. I’d look to trade DeAndre or Asik for equal (or even slightly less) value, and pickup Mullens. Trading either (or both) Asik/DeAndre will raise your FT exponentially and help in TOs.

    @Phanna Mo is progressing verrrrry slowly, and anticipating a mid-late March return. At this point, I would not advise stashing him (unless your league is 14+ deep) until after the all-star break at the absolute earliest. Personally, I think you’d be better suited to find someone else, and look at Mo Williams around March 1.

    @lfctor I’m always up for trading for a top 5 fantasy player (which Kobe is). Only problem I see is you getting weak at PF/C by trading Pau. If you have the ability to pickup a useable big ROS (like Hawes/Splitter/Mullens, even Gibson in the short term) I’d pull the trigger. KG vs Pau ROS, I’m going Pau, although I wouldn’t be shocked if it’s KG.

    @Betsy It’s Nasty Nate until Rose comes back. Long term it’ll be Korver over Nate, but until Rose returns it’s Nate.

    @Kimbo Hmmm. Looks like you could use some depth at PF/C, which is why I’d lean towards Lopez. Bayless/Butler could be worth a gamble depending how you feel about them. Keep an eye on Beal, as he would work as well if he returns 100%.

  17. No, neither is on waivers. That’s why i added Favors in the deal – i need at least 2 at PF and C. Best PF/C on waivers are Speights and Bass, but i’m considering moving Kawhi and Knight for a better PF.

  18. Anything stand out with either of these teams as a potential deal to unload an Iggy/Asik/Jordan?

    This owner needs a rebounder and is strong in blocks but i’ve been trying all season to find a deal to no luck

    Ja. Crawford Knight Deron
    Metta Davis Korver
    Hibbert Bosh
    Sanders Holiday
    Pierce Granger Zeller

    From a categorical standpoint this owner needs 3’s,Rebs,STL and may be my best bet in terms of me landing multiple needs in 1 deal.Atleast based on present standings.

    Nash Harden Teague
    Evans Scola Deng
    Favors Chandler
    Pekovic Miller
    Lillard Allen Ibaka

  19. Thanks Jeff! Ended up moving Sanders and Love for Pierce and Hibbert (so I can still compete on blocks). Sad to be losing Larry but the offer was too good to pass up!

  20. What do you think about t. parker, g. monroe, and igoudala for Westbrook, Cousins, and Bargani? My friend wanted me to get your opinion. thanks Hec!

    Danny

  21. @Eddie Randy Foye is hot… looked pretty damn confident Monday in OT too (added bonus haha)… like him better ROS, with Mo Williams out thru mid March earliest

    @Danny Westbrook/Cousins end of the deal is the winner by far… not close (with or without Bargnani)

    @lfctor Sounds like a smart idea

    @TeenWolf Like the move, it’ll pay off… I’m a big L. Sanders supporter, but you cant go wrong with “The Truth”

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