Fantasy Basketball Buy & Sell: Week 18, Part 2 (2021-22)
I usually start these columns the same way.
“It’s Thursday, and you know what that means.”
It’s an ode to Brodie Lee, who passed away in 2020.
But today, it’s a little different. I didn’t want to write this column. I don’t care about fantasy sports right now. It seems so minor compared to everything else that is happening. Why should we give a damn about fantasy basketball? Why should we care about who is being drafted where in fantasy baseball? Attacks are happening, and we are bickering about high-stakes leagues vs. expert leagues.
I’m just … tired.
But my friend texted me while he was working on a piece for the NFL Draft and said “sometimes, people need an escape. And whether it’s the NFL or if it’s fantasy basketball, we can help provide that.”
So that’s what I’m doing here today as the NBA picks back up after the All-Star Break.
So with that, I hope this helps provide an escape. It helped me writing this, for sure.
And with that … it’s Thursday, and you know what that means …
Buy low, sell high is one of the oldest terms in fantasy, but it’s more involved than that. You have to look at the “low” and “high” of it to make sure you’re maximizing value. We can also buy the player, but question the team and role that they are in when it comes to maintaining the pace that they are on.
Most importantly, you have to be willing to lose the deal or accept that you made the wrong call with any call you make. It happens all the time when we think we are selling at the highest value, only for that player to buck the trend and play like a stud going forward.
Now that you have an idea of what to expect for this column week to week, let’s get to the players.
With the action picking back up, I’m going look at some players who are ranked in the top 50, top 75, and top 100 and whether or not I buy – or sell – them finishing there for the rest of the season.
Derrick White (PG/SG – BOS) Rank: 36
The move to Boston had me concerned for White’s value, as he was going to slide to the bench and backup Marcus Smart. But in his four games with the Celtics, White has played at least 27 minutes and has scored in double-digits in three of those games.
What’s more, Marcus Smart is dealing with an ankle injury, which will increase White’s usage and minutes for a short-term boost. His overall value may dip a bit from where it was in San Antonio, but it’ll be high enough for him to remain a top 50 player moving forward.
Dorian Finney-Smith (SF/PF – DAL): Rank: 61
With Kristaps Porzingis out of the picture, DFS has a clear path to be more than just a, well, DFS option moving forward.
The ceiling is low, but a high-floor player is pretty much a guy who will live in the 60-75 range. Just look at some of the names who surround him in the season-long ranks. For DFS, he’s giving you solid scoring, some three-point help, and help with boards and steals.
For volume purposes alone, he’ll check in around the 65th overall player by season’s end.
Alec Burks (PG/SG/SF – NYK): Rank: 76
With the news that Kemba Walker is shut down for the rest of the season, Burks is suddenly an interesting rest-of-season option for fantasy managers.
Yes, Derrick Rose will be back sooner rather than later, but it’s going to be Burks’ job moving forward.
He’s been seeing steady minutes in the mid-20s, and I expect those to climb to the high-20s to low-30s soon. I’m buying.
Robert Covington (PF/C – LAC): Rank: 38
It’s not that Covington has been bad for the Clippers, it’s just that he’s been inconsistent. Well, rather, his minutes have been. RoCo has played seven games with the Clippers so far, and he’s played 14 or fewer minutes in three of them, 21-23 minutes in two of them, and 27-29 minutes in two others.
The number of bodies that the Clippers have will make consistent minutes for Covington tough to find, and he needs high minutes to be a fantasy contributor with his dwindling skillset.
Jarred Vanderbilt (PF/C – MIN): Rank: 55
I wrote about Vanderbilt last weekend. Well, kind of. I wrote about Jaden McDaniels, who looks to be usurping Vanderbilt in Minnesota. I like McDaniels, but I love Vanderbilt, so it makes me sad.
It’s not a foregone conclusion yet, but Vanderbilt played just 18 minutes in his last game, and while the high rebounding totals have been there, he’s scored in double-digits just once since February 3.
Over the last month, he’s been outside the top 100 for fantasy, and I’m expecting him to end up around there at the end of the year.
Seth Curry (PG/SG – BKN): Rank: 93
Curry has been great for the Nets so far, scoring 55 points in three games – including 12 three-pointers.
But it looks like Kyrie Irving may soon be cleared to play all games for the Nets, and with Kevin Durant on his way back and Ben Simmons ramping up for a return, I just don’t see how Curry will be involved enough in the offense to maintain his fantasy value.
He’s not a cut by any means, but he’s more likely to be a backend player than he is a starter for you.
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