Fantasy Basketball

Fantasy Basketball Week 5 Preview

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By: Joe Bond

USATSI

Injuries, as I noted in my Weekly Dime article, are making a huge difference in the NBA right now, and they are affecting fantasy basketball too. The injuries to Derrick Rose, Marc Gasol and Andre Iguodala are sure to shake up rosters quite a bit for those who owned those players. Especially for those who own Rose and Gasol. They are going to miss significant time and its tough to drop those kinds of players knowing they will return eventually, but also hard to keep an injured player for that long.


This upcoming week is a very full week of games as most teams play four games, the rest play three with the exception being the Kings who play just two games this week. This pretty much means you are just going to play your best players, but  I will go through some guys that might be difficult decisions for you. 

Number of games played this week:
Atlanta Hawks: 4
Boston Celtics: 4
Brooklyn Nets: 4
Charlotte Bobcats: 4
Chicago Bulls: 3
Cleveland Cavaliers: 3
Dallas Mavericks: 4
Denver Nuggets: 4
Detroit Pistons: 4
Golden State Warriors: 4
Houston Rockets: 4
Indiana Pacers: 4
LA Clippers:4
LA Lakers: 4
Memphis Grizzlies: 3
Miami Heat: 4
Milwaukee Bucks: 4
Minnesota Timberwolves: 4
New Orleans Pelicans: 4
New York Knicks: 4
Oklahoma City Thunder: 3
Orlando Magic: 3
Philadelphia 76ers: 3
Phoenix Suns: 4
Portland Trailblazers: 3
Sacramento Kings: 2
San Antonio Spurs: 4
Toronto Raptors: 3
Utah Jazz: 3
Washington Wizards: 4

Start /Sit Recommendations:
Andrew Bynum (C- CLE) – Cleveland only plays three games this week and two of the three are against two of the better defenses out there, Miami and Chicago. The last, Boston, isn’t too bad either. Combine that with the fact that he is only averaging 18 minutes limiting his production a lot, I’m keeping him benched if you still own him.

Caron Butler (SF- MIL) – With all the injuries to Milwaukee and how well Butler has been playing (38 points and 8 rebounds Friday night), he is a must start this week. I know all the starts are on the road, but he only faces one good defensive team this week and that is Charlotte on Friday. In fact if you are in daily leagues and you have a full lineup that night, I’d consider sitting him then too.

Sacramento Kings – Anybody not named DeMarcus Cousins and Isaiah Thomas should probably be sat this week with the Kings only playing two games. If Cousins goes off both games are can get over 50 points and 25 rebounds. That kind of production along makes him worth a start, not to mention the steals and blocks he gives you. Thomas on the other hand isn’t a must start since he isn’t an elite passer, but I do like him. If you have a bunch of other point guards playing four games this week then I can be convinced to start all of them over Thomas.

Kostas Koufos (PF/C-MEM)/Kirk Hinrich(PG – CHI) – I’m lumping these two together because they will be the main replacement players for Marc Gasol and Derrick Rose. Both teams only play three games this week and Koufos gets Houston, Boston and Brooklyn so I’d like to sit him this week if I have other good options to see how he fares against Dwight Howard and Brook Lopez/Kevin Garnett. Hinrich on the other hand is a tough choice. I’m leaning toward sitting him to make sure the Bulls are going to give him the minutes he needs to produce for you, but he does get to Utah, Detroit and Cleveland so he could still be good.

Josh Smith (SF/PF- DET) – I only mention this because I’m sure there are plenty of questions about him after being benched twice in 10 days. Well he is too good and fills the box score up when in there. Besides it is already being reported that Smith will return to the starting line up next week.

Raymond Felton (PG – NYK) – Felton has an injured hip and hamstring and is already said himself he doubts he will play Monday. With that news I don’t want to rely on a player only averaging 11 points and 5.2 assists a game if he only plays two or three games.

You can follow me on Twitter @FantasySixPack for more fantasy news and advice. Also be sure to like us onFacebook, and Google+ for all updates from FantasySixPack.

About Joe Bond

Not just another "Average Joe" when it comes to Fantasy Sports, he is the fantasy brain trust behind the FantasySixPack.net website. Joe is one of the Experts included in the FantasyPros Consensus Rankings for Football, Baseball and Basketball and finished well each year. You can find him on Twitter, @F6P_Joe, where he is waiting by the keyboard for your question.

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