Is Biedrins poised to break out?

February, 8, 2010

With the hullabaloo surrounding some other game in some other sport this weekend, it was an under-the-radar few days for the NBA, and for the first time in a while, no major injury occurred. There was a slew of interesting performances and fantasy developments, especially Friday and Saturday, when there were a combined 22 games. Here are some nuggets from the weekend:

Looking Back

Chauncey Billups, Nuggets: 39 points, 9 3-pointers, 8 assists Friday against the Lakers.
Aaron Brooks, Rockets: 34 points, 6 3-pointers Saturday versus the 76ers.
Lamar Odom, Lakers: 10 points, 22 rebounds, 6 assists Saturday against the Trail Blazers.
Danilo Gallinari, Knicks: 7 points, one 3-pointer in 35 minutes Friday against the Bucks.
Brandon Jennings, Bucks: 5 points (2-10 FG), 7 assists Saturday versus the Pacers.
Ben Wallace, Pistons: No points, 2 rebounds Friday against the Trail Pacers.
Andris Biedrins finally reminded us he's actually pretty good, snaring 18 boards with three blocks Sunday. I am a big fan and recently bought low on him, hoping it'll pay off once he manages to play 30 minutes on a nightly basis. His value still is pretty low, but I don't see the 18 boards as an aberration and expect more big games from Biedrins in the second half. Plus, I've got to love his insane field goal percentage -- 61.1 percent this season, 60.4 percent career.

• With Earl Watson out for personal reasons, T.J. Ford outplayed A.J. Price this weekend. Ford had 31 points, 8 assists, 2 steals and 3 trifectas; Price had 17 points, 8 assists, 1 steal and 2 treys. Watson still will get the biggest chunk of minutes, although the members of this triumvirate of mediocrity kill each other's value, and I wouldn't rely on any of them as a regular fantasy option.

Ben Gordon's 26 points (8-for-11 on field goals) and four 3s on Friday likely grabbed the attention of fantasy owners, although, in typical Gordon fashion, he contributed three rebounds and … that's it. Additionally, he followed it with a five-point effort Saturday, and has just one steal and four assists in the five games since returning. Yuck.

Antoine Wright scored 16 points (6-for-7 on field goals) with 5 rebounds, 4 assists, a steal, a block and 2 3s in 22 minutes off the bench Sunday, marking the fourth game in his past five that he scored 13 points or more. He's averaging 0.8 3s in just 18 minutes per game, making him a definite consideration in deep formats.

Ty Lawson stepped up in Chauncey Billups' absence Saturday, scoring 25 points with 4 rebounds, 4 assists, one steal and one 3-pointer in a hefty 37 minutes. He won't be much of a factor when Billups is in the lineup, but his play this season has proved without a doubt that he's capable of being a factor on an NBA team.

J.R. Smith had a nice weekend, with a combined 46 points and five 3s, although he's still volatile, and his minutes will be unpredictable. Still, 1.9 3s and 1.2 steals in just 28 minutes per game are significant contributions in those categories, and if you can stomach his 40.9 percent shooting, Smith isn't devoid of value, especially since Arron Afflalo tweaked his ankle this weekend, potentially opening a window for Smith to snatch some extra minutes.

Carlos Boozer returned with a vengeance, dropping 19 points (8-for-11 on field goals) and 13 rebounds in 34 minutes. Paul Millsap, who was dominant at times in Boozer's absence, still did well but once again will be a questionable start in many leagues as Boozer's backup.

D.J. Augustin had 13 points (5-for-6 shooting), 5 assists, 2 steals and a 3 in 19 minutes off the bench, a rare solid performance during his disappointing sophomore campaign. He has failed to show improvement this season but still is averaging 0.8 3s in less than 18 minutes per game. He won't have much impact with minutes regularly in the teens, but he's been mentioned in trade discussions, so don't completely erase him from your radar, as he would have impact in 3s, assists and steals if given a starter's minutes.

Donte Greene went off for 31 points, 7 rebounds, 2 blocks and a 3 on Friday, then followed it up with a solid 17 points and 5 rebounds Sunday. His combo of 3s and blocks (0.9, 0.8 respectively) is what makes him special, especially considering it's in just 23 minutes per game. Greene is available in nearly 99 percent of ESPN leagues.

Jerry Stackhouse had 14 points, 6 rebounds and 3 3-pointers off the bench Saturday for the Milwaukee Bucks, although with Luc Richard Mbah a Moute (32 points and 17 boards in two games this weekend) and Ersan Ilyasova (25 points, 9 rebounds, 2 3s in 30 minutes off the bench) around, he won't have enough opportunities to demonstrate the fact that he can still do it. Much like the point guard situation in Indiana, this situation is too crowded for any one of them to emerge as a viable nightly fantasy option.

Josh Whitling is a fantasy basketball analyst for



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