Fantasy Rumors: Keep an eye on Ross
December, 31, 2013
By Joe Kaiser | ESPN.com
Ross' growing fantasy value
If you need scoring and/or 3-point help, Toronto's Terrence Ross is suddenly an option to consider.
Up until recently, the 2012 lottery pick out of Washington was always somewhat of a tease on the court, with his jaw-dropping leaping ability often left on the bench. That all changed since the Raptors traded Rudy Gay, though, and Ross has benefited from the additional minutes.
Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun points out that Ross has started nine of the 10 games since Gay's departure and shot 48 percent from 3-point land during that time.
“Huge,” Toronto coach Dwane Casey told the newspaper of the contribution Ross has been making. “He’s really adapting well. When the teams are double-teaming Kyle [Lowry] and DeMar [DeRozan], he’s the beneficiary of it and I think he likes it. ...
“What’s next for Terrence is catching and attacking their feet. He’s coming. He’s made big strides, playing consistently at both sides of the floor. He’s getting there.”
In terms of fantasy, Ross is very much a specialist who isn't going to provide much more than points and 3s. He's not a big rebounder or steals guy for a rangy 6-foot-6 athlete. And though he shoots 79 percent from the free throw line, he gets to the stripe less than one time per game. For now, he's mostly just a catch-and-shoot option who serves as a floor-spacer, so keep that in mind before you add him to your roster.
Who does Andrew Bynum's suspension impact most?
Anthony Bennett and Tyler Zeller have already seen a bump in minutes in the two games since Bynum's suspension, but both former first-rounders have a lot to prove before they can be fantasy relevant in traditional leagues.
It's the rise in production of Anderson Varejao and Tristan Thompson, who will undoubtedly have a bigger workload with Bynum's 20.0 MPG no longer in the lineup, that is a much bigger deal.
Varejao and Thompson are double-double candidates every night out on the floor, even more so than before, but each carries their own element of risk.
Varejao provides higher shooting percentages (FG and FT) than Thompson and is more of a factor in terms of blocks and steals. However he hasn't played more than 31 games in any of the last four seasons. If you own him, now could be the time to sell high, before the oft-injured big man goes down again.
Meanwhile, Thompson is mostly just a points (12.0) and rebounds (9.7) guy who won't hurt you as much at the free throw line (68.5 percent) as he has in previous years, but he's also a much safer option going forward.
Is Tobias Harris finally on track?
It took nearly two months into the season, but Harris finally is playing like the player so many expected in his second season with Orlando. And if you didn't trade for him by now, it may be too late; anyone with Harris on their team would now need quite an enticing trade offer to part with him based on what he's done over the last five games.
During that stretch, he's averaging 16.4 points, 7.6 rebounds 2.2 assists and 1.0 steals per game. While it's come mostly against poor competition (Utah, Sacramento, New York, Detroit, Atlanta), the encouraging thing is he's done it while struggling from 3-point range (27.8 percent).
If the 3-ball starts to fall for Harris, who has jacked up 3.6 attempts over the last five games, he'll become even more of a fantasy force.
Bumps and bruises
- Andrei Kirilenko could return to the court Tuesday when Brooklyn plays San Antonio, according to Roderick Boone of Newsday. Back troubles have prevented the 32-year-old veteran from playing since Nov. 8.
- Luol Deng, who has missed the last five games with a sore Achilles, could return to the lineup against Toronto on Tuesday, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. If he plays, Deng will eat into Mike Dunleavy's and Tony Snell's minutes.
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