2022-23 Fantasy Basketball Week 4 Buy Low-Sell High

by Greyson Adams
2022-23 Fantasy Basketball Week 4 Buy Low-Sell High

We're into a new week of basketball, with changes that can affect our fantasy teams for better or for worse. But are those changes permanent? Or are they just a short phase that you can take advantage of? I'm here to help, with the 2022-23 Fantasy Basketball Week 4 Buy Low-Sell High.

As we get further into the season, it will be more difficult to consider players a buy-low or sell-high as they regress to their norm. But there will still be some short stints where players under/overperform. A fantasy player's memory can be very short, or they can make rash decisions because of frustration with a player.

These short periods of a slump or a hot streak are when the magic happens. Be sure to take advantage of them!

This column is done weekly, so make sure to come back every Friday to check out the new post! Reminder as always that context is important to whether these players are truly a buy-low or sell-high in your league. Use this as a guide. I hope it helps.

Disclaimer: This was written before any games on Thursday, November, 11. All stats and opinions will reflect that.

2022-23 Fantasy Basketball Week 4 Buy Low-Sell High

Buy of the Week: Rudy Gobert, C, Minnesota Timberwolves

The French center has had a very frustrating season, both from a fantasy and a real-life standpoint. He's averaging 12.6 points, 13.9 boards, 1.1 assists, 0.6 steals, and just 1.6 blocks. He's shooting 59% from the field and 62.8% from the line. When comparing these numbers to his numbers last year with the Jazz, they are all worse. His field goal percentage is noticeably worse, dropping 12% from last year's mark of 71% on the same volume of shots. I don't believe this trend will continue for the entire season. I'm expecting positive regression to come his way, especially in his shooting.

Rudy Gobert was with the Utah Jazz for nine seasons before the trade over to the Minnesota Timberwolves. In those nine seasons, Gobert saw almost the same amount of usage every year, ranging from 13.5% to 16.3%, per Cleaning the Glass. This season, Gobert is seeing a usage rate of 13.0%. This is slightly lower, but nothing to cause a significant change to his statistics.

Cleaning the Glass also has another statistic that we can look at to see what the problem may be: points per shot attempt. They define this as "total points scored per 100 shot attempts, including all field goal attempts and trips to the line." Pretty straightforward. In each of his last six seasons, Gobert has been in the 92nd percentile or higher, scoring at least 131.8 points per 100 shot attempts. His best season came last year on a discombobulated Jazz team, where he scored 143.9 points per 100 shot attempts. This year, he is down to just 124.7, good for the 65th percentile, a massive drop from his norm. Why might this be happening?

Gobert is on a new team with a different dynamic than the one he had grown accustomed to in Utah. The style is much different. It will likely take them a while to develop chemistry and become more comfortable both offensively and defensively. In addition, I believe Gobert will revert to taking smarter, more efficient shots. Per NBA.com, Gobert is currently taking 87% of his shots from five feet or closer to the basket. This might feel like a lot, but it is significantly lower than the 92% mark he had last year. Gobert has already attempted two three-pointers this year. Last year he attempted 4 all season.

My point in these stats is to highlight that Gobert is not fully comfortable yet, and the team is still trying to work out some of the kinks. Once they do figure it out, I would expect Gobert to see his field goal percentage make its way up to at least 65%. As a bonus, I also believe Gobert's block numbers will see positive regression. Apart from his rookie year, Gobert has never had his blocks per game dip below two.

Gobert is the perfect buy-low right now, with this combination of struggle coming with the recent two games he missed. Managers are likely very frustrated with his performance. Now is the time to grab him.

Main Buy Targets

Alex Caruso, PG/SG, Chicago Bulls

The CaruShow has been bad at putting the ball in the hoop recently. He's shot a combined 2/14 (~14%) from the field over the last three games, including 0/1 in 23 minutes most recently. Seeing a big zero in your points column is never fun. But as a manager on the outside looking in, it's a good time to ask about him. As we saw against Toronto in his double-double effort of only assists and rebounds, Caruso's value has never come from his points. However, we've likely seen the worst of it and he'll improve from here. The volume will never be high, but it will be much improved from what we're currently seeing. He's a great low-value guard to have on your team.

Jeremey Sochan, PF, San Antonio Spurs

The young rookie has consistently been a starter for the Spurs, but the minutes haven't been as consistent to start the season. Sochan looks more and more comfortable every game (yes I've been watching a lot of Spurs games, they're fun). Pop has given the young players a much longer leash and it's working.

Sochan hasn't yet produced at an eye-popping level, but his defensive stats are there already. He has only two healthy games this year where he did not have at least one steal or block. His stocks (steals and blocks) numbers should only increase and I'd expect to see the rest of his numbers do the same. He's a very unique player on a young and fun team. His price is nearly nothing if he's on a roster (likely in a deeper league), so you can probably offer a player you plan to drop and get him.

Other Players to Buy

Gordon Hayward, SF/PF, Charlotte Hornets

Hayward is a very boring option, which is why I consider him a buy-low when you add in the injury he's dealing with. Injuries have always been the main concern for Hayward, but when he plays he always produces solid all-around stats. Hayward is more of an option for those in a nice position right now that can deal with the injury, especially those in Yahoo! leagues with an IL and/or IL+ spot. Try to snag him if the price is right, you might be surprised.

Sell of the Week: Tobias Harris, SF/PF, Philadelphia 76ers

Tobias Harris has always been a solid fantasy guy. Nothing too flashy, but he'll give you some of everything. But with James Harden out of the picture his stats have been a little more flashy. Tobi is currently the 26th-ranked player in 9-category (9cat) leagues. His numbers with Harden gone have been even better, bumping him up to 15th in the rankings. His numbers aren't incredibly outlandish, and anybody paying attention knows that his numbers are being inflated with Harden out. This isn't the only reason I have him as my sell of the week. I also have him here because of his overall ranking and his defensive numbers.

Like it or not, you're probably influenced by the rankings for a player just like everyone else. Seeing a player ranked in the 20s makes them more enticing than someone ranked in the 70s, even if there isn't that much difference in their actual numbers. We can look deeper into Harris' ranking using Basketball Monster.

9-Category Breakdown

Harris has averaged 0.9 turnovers a game so far this season, a number that is incredibly low for someone who sees so much of the ball. This is of course a positive for your team, as you want to compete in every category. But how important is that one category to you? Looking into his breakdown, Tobias Harris' most valuable category is, in fact, turnovers. When we remove this category's value from the equation, Harris drops down to the 44th-ranked spot. Still a great player, but it doesn't feel the same, does it?

Another reason for his high ranking has been his defensive stats, which have seen a massive increase from last year, steals especially. Last year Tobias averaged 0.6 steals and 0.6 blocks. This year those averages have increased to 1.4 and 0.7, respectively.  Looking over his career, the block numbers are likely sustainable. He's averaged 0.8 or more blocks two different times in his twelve-year career, and several other seasons with 0.6 blocks. This is nothing irregular. However, when looking at his steals numbers, it would not be surprising if we saw some regression back to his normal average. Harris has never had a single season where he's averaged more than 1.0 steals a game. If he drops down from his current 1.4 steals to 1.0, his 9-category value would drop to the 38th spot.

Tobias is still a great player to roster, but I personally would not put too much stock into his ranking. It is inflated by his turnover stats and his high defensive stats I believe to be unsustainable. With that being said, you should use his ranking as a way to trade him, there's a high likelihood that you can get a great player out of him.

Main Sell Targets

Jalen Green, SG, Houston Rockets

After starting the season with his best Stevie Wonder impression, Jalen Green has really picked up his shooting accuracy. The Sophomore player's first eight games of the season saw him shoot just 36% from the field on almost 19 attempts. That almost guarantees a loss in that category. However, in his last four games, Green has shot 53.8% on about 16 attempts. Not only does this help the field goal percentage category, but this also increases his point totals, and makes his stat lines look much nicer.

I'd bet that Green is neither as bad nor as good of a shooter as we've seen between these two splits. I'd guess that he'll hover around the 43-44% mark when the season comes to a close. Use this hot streak as an opportunity to sell high. There are plenty of fantasy managers that still highly value him and could see this as the start of his breakout for the year.

Myles Turner, C, Indiana Pacers

This sell-high is a bit different from the others. I don't believe that Turner is outperforming his usual stats. He's always been like this, but the main problem is that he's also always been very injury prone. we've already seen it once this year. Turner had to sit out the first four games with an ankle injury.

The Pacers aren't planning on going anywhere but the bottom of the league standings and Turner has been involved in several trade rumors. So any injury that hits Turner will be met with extreme caution as we saw last year. This is enough for me to cash out on the big man and his elite value.

Other Players to Sell

Cam Thomas, SG/SF, Brooklyn Nets

Cam Thomas has taken full advantage of Kyrie Irving's absence, averaging 15.8 points, 2.8 boards, 3.5 assists, and 1.3 steals. He's almost guaranteed himself a spot in the rotation under new head coach Jacques Vaughn. Unfortunately for Thomas, even with Kyrie out, there is still a plethora of guards fighting for minutes in the Nets' rotation, and a hot-hand approach might be taken. Kyrie returning will only further muddy the waters, so it's best to try and get some value out of him while you can.

Jalen McDaniels, SF/PF, Charlotte Hornets

The Hornets have been facing multiple injuries to begin the year, and McDaniels has stepped up and performed admirably. His stocks numbers in particular have been impressive and made him valuable. This is not an immediate sell, but with the return of Lamelo Ball and Gordon Hayward, I would expect his minutes to take a very big hit. Using him as a trade piece is probably a smart court of action.

 

That concludes my 2022-23 Fantasy Basketball Week 4 Buy Low-Sell High. Good luck to everyone moving forward, and be on the lookout next Friday for my next edition!

If you'd like to look at last week's edition, click here.

 


For more fantasy basketball content, click here.

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