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InsideHoops NBA [Home]

Fantasy Basketball Season Closer




/ April 20, 2004

Answerman is the first and only fantasy basketball and romance advice columnist on the net. He is here at Inside Hoops to answer all your questions (or at least the interesting ones).

Fantasy season is over, which pretty much ends the usefulness of my columns for the year. Lets look back and see what we've learned...

Upgrade Jason Richardson in your draft for next year. Its a process and he is developing nicely. He's starting to figure it out. He's a good scorer and rebounder. He's been improving over the last few years. Next year he'll be closer to 4 assists and 1.5 steals per. He does not get hurt.

Downgrade Tracy McGrady. He played real well when he played. However, now we are adding leg problems to his back problems and a spoken fading desire. I wouldn't take him until the second round (which means I'm not getting him)

During the NBA playoffs do nice things for your girl. Flowers, dinners, movies, whatever it takes on the nights your team is not playing (especially in the extended first round).

Upgrade James Posey. He is a good rebounder for a guard, a good stealer and a good - occassionally very good - scorer. Its a useful combination. Posey is funny. Two years ago when he was the ONLY player in Denver, I thought he was going to tear the place up. He didn't. Now in the structure in Memphis he is having a career resurgence. Some people are better in systems.

Downgrade Allen Iverson. Trade or no trade, all the talk about AI wearing down is finally coming true. If he's on another team he will lose the freedom Philly gave him during his great years. I wouldn't take him until the third round (which means I'm not getting him).

Call the time you spend in Sports Bars watching the games her much-needed "alone time". If you have kids, agree to watch the kids at night (while they sleep) so she "can go out with her girl-friends". When she comes home "I hope you had fun. I just sat around, y'know, watching some game"

Upgrade the Whole Rookie Class. I love this Rookie Class. Carmelo with be closer to 10 rebounds per (2nd round); James will be closer to 25 points per game (1st round); Bosh is going to be bigger and more consistent (5th round); hopefully Wades' health will improve, Dallas' Howard will continue to phase out Finley; if Nash leaves watch for Marquis Daniels; Hinrich, Kaman, Gaines will all get better.

Downgrade Baron Davis, Larry Hughes, Gilbert Arenas, Jamal Mashburn, Jerry Stackhouse, Kobe Bryant and any other player that randomly missed games with "nagging injuries". I don't mind extended stints on the disabled list due to one injury (Amare Stoudemire, Elton Brand), I do mind inconsistent attendance.

Owners need to plan. We need games to be played. The above players have "played one-missed two" without warning all season long. Its intolerable.

Upgrade Andre Miller. He was great in Cleveland. Rotten in LA. He's very good again. Depending on your needs, he's a 3rd round pick.

Do not make the mistake of dating a girl who claims to be a big "basketball fan" in the hopes that you will get to watch the games. Generally, women do not like sports the way we do. That is, they would rather watch something else. You are better off with a girl who respects a man's need to watch sports.

Downgrade Shaq. He did come back to LA in better shape this year. Turns out it wasn't his condition causing his stats to suffer. It was him leaving his prime. He should be available around the 3rd round.

Upgrade Odom. Nice season. He stayed pretty healthy, did a nice job across the boards and will continue to be over-sized in the East. He's an early 3rd rounder.

Downgrade Chicago. Every year those guys promise big things. Every year they are inconsistent. I would not draft any player from Chicago. Not one.

It is very important to develop the skill of fake listening while watching a game. Here's the trick, look at her while she is talking but listen to the announcers (I know its painful but it beats a pissed spouse). Say things like "You are right" - but you have to be able to sell the line. Practice it on your boss.

Know Pau Gasol. Its been a few seasons. Now we know. He's not going to get 10 rebounds a game. He'll block shots and score but he won't pass or steal. He's a "double-double" guy who doesn't actually get double-doubles. Fifth round.

Respect Sam Casell. Just need to write it. This season was Casell being Casell in a better situation. He is a second round pick - that you can get in the fourth.

Respect Z. Ilgaukas. Next year, the third round passes and Yao Ming is already gone. You are center-less. Pick Z in the 5th.

Yao's Season: 17.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 1.5 apg, 1.91 bpg.
Z's Season: 15.4 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 1.3 apg, 2.48 bpg.

Do you see the difference? It so subtle its barely there. Yao is capable of bigger games, Z is more consistent. Yao has more upside, but upside doesn't win fantasy leagues. Respect Z.

Ladies: understand that this is playoff season. Know that you can probably get whatver you want in exchange for the promise to watch a game undisturbed. Use it to your advantage. Jewlery, parties, new kitchen...whatever it is.

Watch Joe Johnson. Phoenix will be a free agent player this offseason. If they bring in a top shooting guard (Bryant), Joe Johnson's 2nd half will be a blip on the screen. If they bring in a top point guard (Nash), Joe Johnson is a good scoring-rebounding-stealing-passing guard who merits 4th round attention.

Watch Mikeal Pietrus. Guard who has shown steal and rebound potential. Just watch. I predict articles out of Golden State about his conditioning and summer pick-up games. Late round sleeper.

Men should not wear cologne, designer clothes, or get expensive hair cuts. Women want men who smell and look like men. Do not let television tell you differently.

Watch Micheal Sweetney. Assuming the Knicks lose Baker, Harrington, and Mutombo, he will be a double-double guy. Always helpful to have.

Watch Miami during this playoff run. This team doesn't really know who they are yet. They will find out during these playoffs and it will carry through next season.

Finally, read less basketball columns and give your girl more sexual attention.

Well, that's it for me. Last column. It was a fun ride. Hope you had good seasons. Thanks for your e-mails.

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