With a new year comes the chance for a fresh start. No, not for the NBA season – the all-star game is about six weeks away, and the fates of several teams are being slowly decided. But, for your fantasy basketball team, what better time to start wheeling and dealing? Here are a few players I’d recommend trying to sell if you got ‘em and buy if you don’t.
Joakim Noah, C, Chicago Bulls
The Bulls center has gotten over some early-season injuries and is putting up some huge numbers recently, so hopefully it’s not too late to get him at a discount. The assists and steals number Noah puts up as a center – to go with elite rebounding and blocks – are ideal and grant you more flexibility with the rest of your roster.
Michael Carter-Williams, PG, Philadelphia 76ers
Again, it might be too late – but this kid is for real. The point guard position is deep this year, but MCW has the potential to end up in the top five or six. If you can stomach a slightly below average field goal percentage (41%), the elite steals and rebounding (for his position) numbers will make you drool.
Deron Williams, PG, Brooklyn Nets
It’s got to get better in Brooklyn – well, at least for D-Will’s stats. He will take on more of a scoring burden without Brook Lopez around, which will result in him taking and making more three-pointers. His field goal percentage may dip, but his minutes will rise as the situation for Jason Kidd and his Nets get worse and worse.
Greivis Vasquez, PG, Toronto Raptors
If Kyle Lowry gets traded, he’s a top-10 fantasy point guard and could average 10 dimes per game – last year, he put up a cool 14/4/9 line. Risky to trade for, but also the type of bold move that could win your league.
Rajon Rondo / Marc Gasol / Russell Westbrook
If you can afford to stash any of these guys, send out an offer. Westbrook is a top 8 player, and Rondo and Gasol are second round picks when healthy. If you can get them for anything less, go for it – Gasol should be returning soonest, then Rondo (by February, as the C’s won’t rush him back), and Westbrook is due back after the all-star break.
Kyle Lowry, PG, Toronto Raptors
He is a top 10 PG option if he doesn’t get traded. The trouble is that Raptors’ GM Masai Ujiri is likely to deal the 27-year-old point guard before the deadline – that possibility alone warrants the consideration of unloading him. If you can get a potentially underachieving but superior point guard like Ricky Rubio, Williams or Mike Conley, pull the trigger.
Tim Duncan, F/C, San Antonio Spurs
It’s tough for me to include him here because he has been so consistently productive. However, just the likelihood that he sits out some games in the second half is enough to warrant trying to package him for higher upside guys like Paul Millsap, Noah or Gasol.
Chris Bosh, PF, Miami Heat
He is solid, if unspectacular. If you can get someone to bite on the brand name of Bosh and the Heat and is willing to overpay, go for it. There is not much upside here beyond what he is already doing.
Thaddeus Young and Evan Turner
I like MCW and Hawes regardless what happens but these guys, though they have been surprisingly and awesomely consistent, are also potential trade candidates. The Sixers are bad and might as well get some future assets for these guys and continue to tank.