Fantasy Rumors: Go get Valanciunas
November, 29, 2013
By Joe Kaiser | ESPN.com
Ron Turenne/Getty ImagesJonas Valanciunas' per-game stats have stayed the same despite a bump in playing time.Why now is the time to trade for Valanciunas
After a promising finish to Jonas Valanciunas' rookie season, many expected the Toronto Raptors center to flourish as a second-year player, and it still may happen. But so far, it hasn't.
In fact, his points (9.0), rebounds (7.8) and blocks (0.9) are basically mirroring what he did as a rookie despite a three-minute bump in playing time.
What's worse is the fact that Valanciunas' minutes have been inconsistent. Six times already in this young season, he's played 23 minutes or less, a troublesome trend -- and a frustrating one -- for fantasy owners.
Still, Valanciunas' upside remains high. A double-double average is within his grasp this season, and unlike most centers around the league, he hits his free throws (79 percent for his career). There's plenty of reason to believe he could settle into a groove as the season progresses, and on Monday, ESPN Insider David Thorpe listed him No. 9 among all second-year players.