The blog Eight Points, Nine Seconds has presented a detailed breakdown of Danny Granger's early shooting woes. Shot selection has never been a strong point for Granger, but converting 42 percent of attempts at the rim, 14 percent of mid-range jumpers, and 11 percent of long twos (!) goes beyond shot selection and puts us will into "there's no way this continues" territory. He's currently checking in with an effective field goal percentage of 36.2, while his career mark is 50.4, and his career low (from 2010-11) is 48.7. League average tends to be around 50.0, which does reflect that efficiency has never really been a strong suit of Granger's, even while accumulating numbers for fantasy has been. Granger's surplus steals (2 per game) and blocks (1) have helped keep his per-game rank respectable (65), relative to his anemic shooting, and the fact that his defensive numbers have perked up again is a good sign. If your squad can handle his shot volume at somewhere around 40 percent and those combined, threes, steals, and blocks are just what you are missing, then maybe a trade feeler to his frazzled current owner is in order before a few more of those looks do start to fall.
• Matt Barnes has been announced as the Lakers' permanent starter at small forward, and his recent play has him on fantasy radars. Foul trouble and sporadic contributions marked his early starts, but he's at least dealt with the production issues more recently - his past two games include 15.5 points on 67-percent shooting, 8 boards, 3.5 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.5 blocks, and 4.5 fouls. The Lakers are desperate for production from the position and for some of the little things they lost in the Lamar Odom trade - Barnes can defend, score transition buckets, and knock down an open three. Barnes should be added in anything deeper than standard 12x13 leagues, and he could push for standard league relevance (by way of combined threes, steals, and blocks) if the Lakers give him a consistent 30 minutes per game.
• The Bobcats' starting five looked a bit different on Saturday, with DeSagana Diop starting at center, moving Boris Diaw to power forward and D.J. White to the bench. And Tyrus Thomas was the starter at small forward, replacing Derrick Brown. Paul Silas wants size at center, and that's one thing Diop does provide. Monday's matchup with the Knicks will help us establish possible fantasy impacts of a few players going forward. Diop will start again, but Byron Mullens figures to see more minutes and has been very productive lately (21 minutes, 14.3 points, 53% FG, 6.3 boards, 1 block over the past four games). Mullens showed positive signs in the D-League and has surprised with a solid jumper so far this season. There will be plenty of minutes available behind Diop on most nights, and Mullens could end up starting if his recent play continues. Thomas will once again start at small forward, so Carmelo Anthony will put his defense to a serious test, but we'll also see if Thomas can present any kind of challenge for Melo's defense. How he performs in this matchup will be telling as to whether or not he can stick at small forward, possibly even after Corey Maggette returns from his hamstring injury. And yes, White is now the odd man out here after looking solid in his run as the starting power forward.
• Marreese Speights' line from Sunday (29 minutes, 17 points, 8-18 FG, 7 boards, 2 steals) reinforces that (1) he can score when he shoots a lot and (2) there are minutes and usage available for him while Zach Randolph is missing. Speights also had one of the team's worst +/- ratings (-10), but that's not a knock on his fantasy potential until Lionel Hollins says it is. The Grizzlies have averaged 86 points on offense in three games without Z-Bo, and Speights' jumpshot will be an asset for the team if it continues to fall with regularity.
• Status updates: Carmelo Anthony says he's pain free and will play Monday .. Kyle Lowry (foot) was a full participant in the Rockets' Monday practice and looks ready to go for Tuesday. Kevin Martin did not practice because of flu-like symptoms .. Spencer Hawes' back feels much better and he's playing Monday .. Nene Hilario (heel) will try to play Monday .. Marvin Williams (ankle) will miss at least the next two games. Look for Vladimir Ramanovic and Tracy McGrady to see a bump in minutes .. Monday's game-time decisions for the Pacers: Danny Granger (food poisoning), Roy Hibbert (ankle), and George Hill (back) .. For the Pistons: Rodney Stuckey (groin) and Charlie Villanueva (foot) are out, Austin Daye (ankle) is a game-time decision .. Mehmet Okur (back) is out Monday and targeting Wednesday for a return .. Also see: Week 3 Dashboard
• Scanning the Buzz Index leaders: Toney Douglas probably can be cut for a hot hand in a typical standard league, but don't forget that he made his mark with productive reserve minutes last season. He can still make an impact if he stays in the 25-minute range and those threes finally start falling .. Markeiff Morris' play (good energy, defense, and spot-up shooting) has him firmly in the Suns' rotation at both forward spots. Add with confidence here .. Gary Neal's third start was his best yet (28 minutes, 18 points, 2 threes, 3 assists, 1 steal) and who is the main benefactor of the Manu Ginobili injury should no longer be in doubt .. I'm not quite ready to give up on Jonas Jerebko, as he's been a victim of poor point guard play, like the rest of his team. A healthy Rodney Stuckey will help him turn those offensive numbers back around .. Chase Budinger can hit waivers now that he's adjusting to his role as a reserve. Kevin McHale is hoping that Bud will have more offensive opportunities with the second unit, but what he won't find are the consistent minutes needed to make a fantasy impact.
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