Lawson's strong month encouraging

Updated: February 4, 2013, 4:19 PM ET
By Brian McKitish | Special to ESPN.com

With another month coming to a close and the All-Star game just two weeks away, it's time for another game of fun with numbers, this time focusing on recent trends and splits for the month of January.

The Top 130

Note: Brian McKitish's top 130 players are ranked for their fantasy value from this point forward in the 2012-13 NBA season. Previous rank is indicated in parentheses.


1. Kevin Durant, OKC (1)
2. LeBron James, MIA (2)
3. Russell Westbrook, OKC (4)
4. James Harden, HOU (5)
5. Kyrie Irving, CLE (6)
6. Stephen Curry, GS (8)
7. Nicolas Batum, POR (7)
8. Kobe Bryant, LAL (9)
9. Chris Paul, LAC (3)
10. Carmelo Anthony, NY (10)
11. Serge Ibaka, OKC (11)
12. Marc Gasol, MEM (13)
13. Paul George, IND (12)
14. Dwyane Wade, MIA (16)
15. Jrue Holiday, PHI (15)
16. Deron Williams, BKN (17)
17. Brandon Jennings, MIL (18)
18. Josh Smith, ATL (20)
19. LaMarcus Aldridge, POR (21)
20. David Lee, GS (23)
21. Damian Lillard, POR (19)
22. Brook Lopez, BKN (24)
23. DeMarcus Cousins, SAC (25)
24. Al Jefferson, UTAH (22)
25. Greg Monroe, DET (26)
26. Ty Lawson, DEN (35)
27. Kemba Walker, CHA (27)
28. Paul Pierce, BOS (28)
29. Blake Griffin, LAC (34)
30. Rudy Gay, TOR (47)
31. Anthony Davis, NO (29)
32. Dirk Nowitzki, DAL (30)
33. John Wall, WSH (31)
34. Mike Conley, MEM (33)
35. Zach Randolph, MEM (36)
36. Tony Parker, SA (42)
37. Greivis Vasquez, NO (39)
38. Ryan Anderson, NO (41)
39. Al Horford, ATL (45)
40. Ersan Ilyasova, MIL (59)
41. Dwight Howard, LAL (32)
42. Chris Bosh, MIA (38)
43. Monta Ellis, MIL (43)
44. Larry Sanders, MIL (46)
45. Kyle Lowry, TOR (95)
46. Wesley Matthews, POR (44)
47. Klay Thompson, GS (52)
48. Andrei Kirilenko, MIN (37)
49. Tim Duncan, SA (40)
50. Danilo Gallinari, DEN (54)
51. J.R. Smith, NY (49)
52. Joakim Noah, CHI (14)
53. Goran Dragic, PHO (56)
54. George Hill, IND (51)
55. Luol Deng, CHI (58)
56. Jameer Nelson, ORL (53)
57. Steve Nash, LAL (48)
58. Andre Iguodala, DEN (60)
59. Jeff Teague, ATL (68)
60. Paul Millsap, UTAH (50)
61. O.J. Mayo, DAL (55)
62. Kevin Garnett, BOS (71)
63. Pau Gasol, LAL (62)
64. Nikola Pekovic, MIN (75)
65. Kenneth Faried, DEN (57)
66. Roy Hibbert, IND (64)
67. Amare Stoudemire, NY (69)
68. Carlos Boozer, CHI (66)
69. Joe Johnson, BKN (61)
70. Tyreke Evans, SAC (67)
71. Kevin Martin, OKC (70)
72. Tristan Thompson, CLE (82)
73. Jeremy Lin, HOU (73)
74. Raymond Felton, NY (72)
75. Ricky Rubio, MIN (74)
76. Evan Turner, PHI (76)
77. David West, IND (78)
78. Nikola Vucevic, ORL (83)
79. Jamal Crawford, LAC (77)
80. Eric Gordon, NO (63)
81. Thaddeus Young, PHI (79)
82. J.J. Redick, ORL (89)
83. Tyson Chandler, NY (80)
84. Omer Asik, HOU (84)
85. J.J. Hickson, POR (85)
86. Nene, WSH (81)
87. Jarrett Jack, GS (86)
88. Marcin Gortat, PHO (65)
89. Jose Calderon, DET (93)
90. Amir Johnson, TOR (92)
91. Darren Collison, DAL (88)
92. Manu Ginobili, SA (87)
93. Andre Drummond, DET (90)
94. Kyle Korver, ATL (96)
95. Kawhi Leonard, SA (97)
96. Ramon Sessions, CHA (98)
97. Metta World Peace, LAL (94)
98. Chandler Parsons, HOU (101)
99. DeMar DeRozan, TOR (99)
100. Andrew Bogut, GS (NR)
101. Tiago Splitter, SA (108)
102. Danny Granger, IND (103)
103. Emeka Okafor, WSH (109)
104. Arron Afflalo, ORL (91)
105. Taj Gibson, CHI (NR)
106. Brandon Knight, DET (107)
107. Tyler Zeller, CLE (105)
108. Luis Scola, PHO (104)
109. Carlos Delfino, HOU (102)
110. Jason Terry, BOS (112)
111. Jared Dudley, PHO (113)
112. Derrick Rose, CHI (114)
113. Isaiah Thomas, SAC (116)
114. Gerald Wallace, BKN (106)
115. Andrea Bargnani, TOR (117)
116. Michael Beasley, PHO (NR)
117. Kevin Love, MIN (118)
118. Jerryd Bayless, MEM (NR)
119. Gerald Henderson, CHA (120)
120. Eric Bledsoe, LAC (128)
121. Nate Robinson, CHI (NR)
122. Luke Ridnour, MIN (115)
123. Avery Bradley, BOS (122)
124. Derrick Favors, UTAH (126)
125. Dion Waiters, CLE (111)
126. Andrew Bynum, PHI (129)
127. Shawn Marion, DAL (NR)
128. Vince Carter, DAL (130)
129. Randy Foye, UTAH (NR)
130. Nick Young, PHI (NR)

5.2 -- Assists per game for Kevin Durant in the month of January. We've talked about Durant's improving assist rate before in this space, and this isn't a terribly surprising statistic, but it just goes to show how far Durant has separated himself from the rest of the fantasy pack this season. Remember when we used to debate Durant versus LeBron James for fantasy's top spot? Seems almost silly now when you add Durant's impressive assist totals to his wide edge in free throw shooting (on considerably more FT attempts). I'll gladly take Durant's 29.6 points, 7.4 boards, 4.4 assists, 1.6 steals, 1.2 blocks and 1.9 3-pointers with 51.6 percent from the floor and 90.4 percent from the line over LeBron's 26.5 points, 8.3 rebounds, 7.0 assists, 1.7 steals, 0.9 blocks and 1.3 3-pointers with 54.7 percent from the floor and 73.4 percent from the line.

47.1 -- Kyrie Irving's field goal percentage on the season, which is even more impressive given his 2.0 3-pointers per game. In fact, Irving is the only player in the league who is averaging 2-plus 3-pointers per game while also shooting better than 47 percent from the floor. Irving may not dish out as many assists as his elite point guard counterparts, but he remains a top-10 fantasy play thanks to his big contributions in points, steals, 3-pointers and the percentages.

1.8 -- Steals per game for Dwyane Wade in the month of January. Wade struggled out of the gate early this season, but he really turned up his game in January with 21.3 points, 5.1 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 1.8 steals and 1.0 blocks in 13 games. I have to admit, I was pretty worried about Wade earlier in the season, but this recent stretch has calmed my fears and I'm ready to roll with him the rest of the way.

70.1 -- Free throw percentage in 6.1 attempts per game for Blake Griffin in the month of January. Blake has become a much better fantasy player this season thanks to his improved free throw shooting and intensity on the defensive end. His owners may be slightly disappointed with his scoring and rebounding numbers compared to prior seasons, but he's a much more complete fantasy player these days after averaging 19.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 1.7 steals and 0.8 blocks while shooting 52.1 percent from the floor and 70.1 percent from the line in January.

47.9 -- Ty Lawson's field goal percentage in the month of January after shooting 41 percent for much of the season. Finally living up to his lofty preseason expectations with 17.9 points, 6.4 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.4 3-pointers last month, Lawson appears to have put his early-season shooting woes behind him. It's also no big surprise that the Nuggets are 13-3 since the turn of the calendar with Lawson playing so well.

5.9 -- 3-point field goal attempts per game for Danilo Gallinari in the month of January. We already spoke about Ty Lawson's improved play, but don't overlook the Rooster, who has posted 19.3 points, 4.8 rebounds, 0.8 steals, 0.8 blocks and 2.5 3-pointers in the same span. Gallinari had a rough time shooting the ball early in the season, but he should be golden the rest of the way now that he's found his touch.

34.4 -- Minutes per game for Suns point guard Goran Dragic since Lindsey Hunter took over the head coaching duties from Alvin Gentry. Dragic, who is averaging 15.1 points, 8.7 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.0 3-pointers since the coaching change, is finally starting to put things together thanks to Hunter's more consistent rotations. I'm not sure if he'll be able to return the third-round value many of us paid for him at the start of the season, but he should be a borderline top-50 player the rest of the way.

7.5 -- 3-point field goal attempts for Orlando Magic shooting guard J.J. Redick in the month of January. Redick has been one of fantasy's best pickups this season, posting 17.5 points and 3.5 3-pointers while shooting 49.7 percent from the floor and 87.5 percent from the line last month. Those numbers were good enough to place him 23rd on our Player Rater during that span, which makes Redick one of the more underrated players in fantasy at the moment. Given that he's shooting 46.7 percent from downtown over the past month, there's definitely a little sell high in Redick, but he should continue to be a big contributor in points, 3-pointers and the percentages the rest of the way.

11.4 -- Rebounds per game for Emeka Okafor, good for sixth in the league in the month of January. After averaging 11.2 points, 11.4 rebounds, 0.8 steals and 1.0 blocks in 27.9 minutes last month, Okafor has been an underrated force in the paint for fantasy owners. Given that the Wizards have been much more competitive with Okafor in the lineup (this also coincides with John Wall's return), we should expect him to remain a factor as a nightly double-double threat for the foreseeable future.

6.4 -- Free throw attempts per game for Ramon Sessions, who shot 88.9 percent from the line with 15.9 points and 0.9 steals per game in January. Sessions has been ultra-aggressive in looking for his shot and taking the ball to the basket for the offensively challenged Bobcats. I wish he would contribute a bit more in 3-pointers and assists, but he should continue to be a solid contributor in points, steals and free throw percentage.

1.9 -- Blocks per game for Taj Gibson in just 23.6 minutes per game in the month of January. I mention Gibson here not only because I'm actually pretty concerned about Joakim Noah's most recent bout with plantar fasciitis, but also because he's always produced big numbers whenever he's seen extended minutes. Gibson is posting 12.8 points, 9.4 rebounds and 2.8 blocks while shooting 57.7 percent from the floor over his past five games, and he'll continue to have big value for as long as either Noah or Carlos Boozer are out of action.

Brian McKitish is a fantasy basketball analyst for ESPN.com and is a two-time Fantasy Basketball Writer of the Year, as named by the Fantasy Sports Writers Association.

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