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NBA Wired: Top Pickups Week 11

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I’m done. That’s right, it’s over. No mas. If you already guessed that I’m talking about the Milwaukee Bucks, give yourself a gold star with a RW on it. I’m not going to recommend any more Bucks in this column, at least not right now. Brandon Knight is killing it and I hope that you own him. But if you own Larry Sanders, O.J. Mayo (20 points Saturday), John Henson, Ersan Ilyasova, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Khris Middleton, Caron Butler (four treys Saturday), Luke Ridnour or anyone else who plays for Larry Drew, you’re probably miserable more often than you’re happy. The Bucks just have too many guys who do the same things and none of them can seem to figure out what their role is. I am holding Ilyasova in a league or two in hopes that he can suddenly pull his head out of you-know-where and start producing, but I’m not holding my breath. I’m ignoring all of them going forward, at least as of today. Writing blurbs after Bucks games is like trying to herd cats. It’s just a mess.

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Games Played for Week 11

4 Games: ATL, BOS, BRK, DAL, DET, MIN, NOP, ORL, PHI, PHX, WAS

3 Games: CHA, CHI, CLE, DEN, GSW, HOU, IND, LAC, LAL, MEM, MIA, MIL, NYK, OKC, POR, SAC, SAN, TOR

2 Games: UTA

With just two games this week, I think you can safely bench all your Jazz in weekly leagues, unless you’ve got limited options and want to fly with Derrick Favors, Trey Burke or Gordon Hayward.

Point Guards

Darren Collison LAC 37% owned in Yahoo! leagues

Chris Paul could miss a couple months with his shoulder injury and the point guard job now belongs to Collison. He should be owned in 100 percent of leagues by the end of the week, so stop what you’re doing and go get him if he still happens to be available in your league.

Kendall Marshall LAL 30%

Marshall is the last point guard standing in L.A. and went off for 20 points, six rebounds, 15 assists and two 3-pointers in his first start on Friday. He’ll take a hit if we ever seen one of the Steves again (Blake or Nash), but until then, he looks like all systems go.

Jarrett Jack CLE 32%

Kyrie Irving is banged up with a knee injury, meaning Jack is your starter. He’s been shooting it pretty miserably, hitting just 6-of-24 shots in his last two games, but he’s playing heavy minutes and has triple-double potential if you catch him on the right night. Obviously his potential for value drops once Irving is back in action, but he should still see a lot of minutes even when that happens.

Beno Udrih NYK 5%

Raymond Felton is still nursing his groin injury and as long as he’s out, Beno is the starter in New York. He’s averaging 8.4 points, 2.8 rebounds, 6.6 assists and 1.6 steals over his last five games, and has gone for 10 & 7 in each of his last two.

Shaun Livingston BRK 3%

Livingston is starting at shooting guard for the Nets, but is a point guard by trade. He’s averaging 10.8 points, 3.4 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 1.2 steals and 28 minutes per game over his last five. If you need 3-pointers, look elsewhere, but as long as he’s starting for the Nets, he has the potential to be worth owning in many leagues.

Shooting Guards

Gerald Green PHX 32%

Eric Bledsoe is quickly becoming quite annoying to own and will miss “another week” with his knee injury. Green has played well when Bledsoe has missed games all season and that should continue this week. Green has scored 20-plus points in two of his last three games, can block shots, and has nabbed nine steals in his last two games, and buried 13 3-pointers over his last four games. He looks like a must-start player this week with four games.

Jodie Meeks LAL 36%

Meeks is starting at shooting guard until further notice and has hit double figures in four of his last five games. He’s averaging 13.4 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.8 steals and 2.8 3-pointers over that stretch, despite hitting just 37 percent of his shots. If they start falling, look out.

Tony Wroten PHI 16%

Wroten has scored 20-plus in two of his last five games and while he’s much more attractive when a teammate is injured, he’s holding his own off the bench. He’s averaging 14.0 points, 3.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.2 steals and 0.8 3-pointers on 38 percent shooting over his last five games, and carried the Sixers in Thursday’s win over the Kings.

Iman Shumpert NYK 27%

Shumpert is suddenly on fire, going for 26 and 27 points in each of his last two games. I have no idea if it will last, but Mike Woodson is probably hoping it will, just like Shumpert and Knicks fans are. Even with a 12-minute, zero-point dud in the mix, he’s averaging 13.4 points, 5.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.6 steals and 2.8 3-pointers over his last five games. And over his last two, he checks in with 26.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 2.0 steals and 6.0 3-pointers. I would not be afraid to launch him with three games this week.

C.J. Miles CLE 5%

Miles has quietly scored 19, 14 and 17 points in three of his last four games and is starting at shooting guard over Dion Waiters. He’s also hitting 3-pointers and stealing the ball some, and now could be a good time to pounce on him if he can stay hot.

Small Forwards

Terrence Ross TOR 28%

Ross is cranking 3-pointners and has scored in double figures in five of his last six games. Over his last five he’s averaging 14.4 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 1.4 steals and 3.2 3-pointers. It looks like he’s finally turned the corner and he should be owned in more than 28 percent of the leagues out there. Especially given how shallow the small forward position is in fantasy.

Chris Douglas-Roberts CHA 1%

CDR started at small forward over Anthony Tolliver on Saturday and I see no reason why he won’t continue to do so. He plays tough defense and had 10 points, four boards, two assists, a monster block on Isaiah Thomas, and a 3-pointer on Saturday, and poured in 20 points and two 3-pointers off the bench on Thursday. If he sticks in the starting five, give him a look over Mirza Teletovic, or anyone else you’re holding that isn’t getting it done.

Earl Clark CLE 1%

Clark is starting at small forward for the Cavs and has been underwhelming, averaging 7.2 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.2 blocks and 1.2 3-pointers over his last five games. But as long as he’s starting, the potential is there for him to play better than this.

Matt Barnes LAC 5%

Barnes played 28 minutes on Saturday and while he hit just 2-of-9 shots, the signs are pointing to a bump in minutes with Chris Paul down and out. He has the potential to be a nine-cat player and while his recent numbers aren’t really worth mentioning, buying him now could pay off down the road.

James Johnson MEM 19%

JJ has been quiet over his last two games, totaling 10 points on 4-of-10 shooting, but over his last five, the numbers check in at 9.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.8 steals, 1.4 blocks and 0.4 3-pointers. His minutes dipped to just 13 on Friday, but it may not be permanent. Tayshaun Prince simply isn’t very good and I think the Grizzlies have to play Johnson more. Keep a close eye on him over his next couple games and hope that Friday’s low minutes total was a fluke.

Power Forwards

Glen Davis ORL 39%

Davis has gotten some extra burn lately with Nikola Vucevic nursing a sprained ankle, but was playing well before he went down. He’s at 14.0 points, 7.6 rebounds and 0.8 blocks over his last five on 43 percent shooting, and may be able to keep it going once Vucevic is back.

Channing Frye PHX 47%

Frye is suddenly hot again, scoring 22, 14 and 12 points in each of his last three games while knocking down 16 3-pointers. Over his last five games, he’s averaging 13.0 points, 5.8 boards, 2.2 assists, 1.0 steals, 1.2 blocks and 3.0 3-pointers, and has played more than 33 minutes in each of his last two games. He can cool off and give way to the Morris twins at any time, but he’s hot right now and plays four times next week.

Kris Humphries BOS 28%

Humps has come out of nowhere to grab double-digit rebounds in three straight games and is averaging 10.4 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocks over his last five games. And he’s averaging 26 minutes over his last three, meaning there should be more production coming his way. It’s time to pick the former Kardashian up.

Al-Farouq Aminu NOP 10%

Ryan Anderson is in the hospital with a potentially serious back problem and could miss significant time. And that should mean Aminu is relevant again. He hasn’t done much over the last week, but if he gets heavy minutes in Anderson’s absence (and he should), there should be some points, boards, steals, blocks and 3-pointers coming his way.

Trevor Booker WAS 12%

Booker is still starting over Nene and has racked up 13 and 19 rebounds in each of his last two games. He’s averaging 8.8 points, 11.0 rebounds and 0.6 blocks over his last five, and is worth a look as long as he’s starting for the Wizards.

Centers

Pero Antic ATL 6%

Antic exploded for 16 points, seven rebounds and four 3-pointers on Friday against the Warriors, and backed it up with nine points, seven rebounds, a block and three 3-pointers on Saturday. He’s hit a 3-pointer in six straight games and while he’s no Kyle Korver, he deserves a look by any owner in need of a center.

Brandan Wright DAL 24%

Wright has hit double digits in scoring in three straight games, but hasn’t blocked a shot in any of them, and has five boards or less in them. His shot is dropping, as he’s hit 20-of-26 over his last four games, and it’s hard to imagine him not grabbing a few more boards going forward.

Enes Kanter UTA 66%

Kanter is still hit or miss, but is a good player to hold in case he ever gets back into the starting lineup. He’s kind of hot again right now, going for 16 points and 10 boards on Friday, and is averaging 11.2 points, 7.4 rebounds and 0.8 blocks over his last five. If he was dropped in your league, think about stashing him, and see how he plays in his two games this week.

Jason Smith & Alexis Ajinca NOP 7%

Ryan Anderson’s back injury could mean good things for Smith, as he could move back to starting once he’s back from his shoulder injury. We don’t know when that will be and he’s missed four straight games. Alexis Ajinca started at center on Saturday and had 17 points, seven rebounds, a steal and a block, and is worth a look until Smith is healthy. But as long as Anderson is out, one of these two is going to get a lot of minutes at center.

Boris Diaw SAN 9%

Tiago Splitter suffered a shoulder injury on Saturday and didn’t return to the game. If he’s going to miss time, Diaw could be in line for some nice minutes. Unfortunately, he didn’t play on Saturday due to strep throat, but that shouldn’t keep him out for long. Keep an eye on an update for Splitter and act accordingly if he’s going to miss time. 

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