Bynum returns, but it's Gasol who dominates
This isn't irrelevant to fantasy, either. He's eighth overall on the Player Rater, and 15th overall if you account for averages. Those who drafted Gasol anywhere near his average draft position of 37 got what is arguably a first-round talent. And in leagues that count turnovers, he's even more valuable; he commits fewer turnovers than anyone ahead of him on the Rater apart from Dirk Nowitzki. All in all, it makes him one of the best big-name values in fantasy this year, though I bet most people who don't own him are aware of that fact.
Next year, people will argue that his numbers will go down because Bynum won't get hurt again, but you should keep last night in mind, when Bynum made his return and Pau still eviscerated the Nuggets to the tune of 27 points, 19 rebounds and three assists in 38 minutes, during which the Lakers scored 15 points more than the Nuggets. Pau's going to give you late-first-round talent again next year, and despite his fantastic play this year, you'll likely still be able to get him a lot later.
Under the boards
• Ron Artest, Rockets: 26 points (10-for-18 FG), 3 assists, 2 steals, 3 3-pointers at Sacramento.|
• Kobe Bryant, Lakers: 33 points (11-for-19 FG, 9-for-10 FT) against the Nuggets.
• Francisco Garcia, Kings: 17 points, 4 assists, 2 steals, 3 blocks, 3 3-pointers against the Rockets.
• Chris Andersen, Nuggets: 1 point, 8 rebounds, 0 blocks against the Lakers.|
• Trevor Ariza, Lakers: 4 points (1-for-8 FG), 1 rebound, 0 steals against the Nuggets.
• Kirk Hinrich, Bulls: 9 points (4-for-9 FG), 2 rebounds, 2 assists against the 76ers.