Amare Stoudemire Injury Outlook Getting Worse

Amare Stoudemire will be getting a second opinion on his left knee injury, which reports are now speculating could keep him out 15-20 games.  That’s a far cry from the initial diagnosis of 2-3 weeks for a simple ruptured cyst.  At this point, it really seems that there could be more to his knee injury than is being reported.

Fantasy Outlook – If Stoudemire is required to miss extended time, the Knicks playoff hopes really take a huge hit.  They’ll probably move Carmelo Anthony to power forward and maybe try to run with Steve Novak and Ronnie Brewer at Small Forward.  If the Knicks decide to move Melo to power forward, his stats could be better than what he could do at small forward, especially his rebounding numbers.

Tyson Chandler would also probably see a little bump up in rebounding numbers.

With Anthony at power forward, New York would also likely lean a little more heavily on the perimeter offense provided by J. R. Smith, which would really help his fantasy value.

I got stuck with Stoudemire a couple of weeks ago in one keeper league when he just fell a ridiculously long way down the draft board, but this just goes to show that sometimes what you think is a bargain is simply a piece of trash that will never get any better.  I’d avoid Stoudemire, let someone else deal with that headache.

Kevin Love Breaks Hand, Out 6-8 Weeks

Kevin Love suffered a broken hand yesterday and will miss 6-8 weeks.

Fantasy Analysis:  What a brutal start for Roto league owners who used a top 5 pick on Love.  With Love out, Derrick Williams really has a chance to get some significant minutes and make a case for more playing time even after Love returns.  Williams has had a great camp and I was already giving serious thought to taking a late round flier on him, especially in a few keeper leagues.

Andrei Kirilenko also sees a spike in value with Love out.  Kirilenko should get the start at small forward with Williams moving to power forward.  He’s looked pretty good in camp and can help you in just about every category.

Nikola Pekovic should also see a bump in value with a couple more rebounds without Love around.   He could also be leaned on a little more for interior scoring.

Fantasy Red Flags: Dirk Nowitzki

I’ve loved having Nowitzki on my team in the past, but I definitely think it’s time to hop off the bandwagon before it goes crashing over the cliff.  The latest reports have Dirk suffering from a lingering knee injury and talking possible surgery, but you also have to wonder just how much of his attitude could be disgust with Mark Cuban and the dismantling of their team as Dirk winds down his career.  Curious timing to say the least.

So where should we draft Nowitzki and who else might benefit if he is sidelined?  I’ve currently got him slotted as the sixth best power forward on the board, but that was before I ran across the latest news report about the knee.  I could easily see moving Greg Monroe ahead of him, possibly David Lee and likely Zach Randolph if Randolph shows to be back to full health.  If you are in a keeper league, then you have to drop Nowitzki behind guys like Paul Millsap, Serge Ibaka and maybe even Amare Stoudemire.

If Nowitzki does end up having surgery, or even if he’s just seeing a big decrease in minutes, the guy that stands to benefit the most is Elton Brand.  I’ve pretty much written Brand off as nothing more than a 25 minute per night backup, but he could really gain some value if he’s getting big minutes backing up Nowitzki, as well as seeing good minutes backing up Kaman in a smaller lineup.  Keep an eye on Dirk’s health and keep Brand in mind at the end of your draft, and most definitely as a handcuff if you decide to roll the dice on Dirk.

Mirza Teletovic – Fantasy Three Point Machine

If you are looking for three pointers late in your fantasy draft, then you’ll definitely want to give 6’9 Euroleague star, Mirza Teletovic, a look.  Not many NBA fans know about the recently signed Brooklyn Net, but the guy has a great shooting stroke and could be a huge source of threes from the power forward position.  Here’s a quick look at his game.

NBA Rookie Draft Ranking and Fantasy Outlook: Thomas Robinson

The Sacramento Kings selected Thomas Robinson with the fifth pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.

Robinson’s career stats at Kansas:

105 Games, 9.8 points, 7.3 rebounds, .7 blocks, .6 steals, 52.4 FG%, 60.5 FT%

Fantasy Advice:  The Kings needed some size to pair with DeMarcus Cousins and they got just that in the 6’9 power forward from Kansas.  Robinson is a very high character  guy and will hopefully pair well with Cousins.  The only fear here is that Cousins’ questionable attitude will rub off on Robinson or at least frustrate him somewhat.  Hopefully, the coaching staff keeps an eye on the situation.

Robinson is also great human story, even outside the world  of basketball.  ESPN had an emotional feature on him that you can read HERE.  If you watched the draft, you saw his little sister with him and you know the back story.  If you don’t know the story, then definitely check out the article.

Robinson’s biggest fantasy contribution this season will be with his rebounding.  The Kings were 29th in the league last season in defensive rebounding and Robinson should get an immediate shot at starting and improving that team rebounding figure.  He’s not a great FT% shooter with a career 60.5 FT% in college, so he’ll have to work on that.

If you are looking for a late round keeper league power forward to pad the rebound category, Robinson is probably your guy.  Just don’t expect much more than a one category boost in his first season as he won’t be asked to contribute much on the offensive end with guys like Cousins, Tyreke Evans, Isaiah Thomas and Marcus Thornton surrounding him.