In the week after Christmas, all of the retail stores are looking to cash in before the New Year with various huge deals and discounts. It's not out of the ordinary to see signs for 80 percent off or special deals like five items for $5. Well, the Fantasy Lab has its own special this week as we near 2009: Nine players under nine percent owned. The following article profiles nine players who are not owned in more than 90 percent of Yahoo! and/or Sportsline leagues who are likely to help your fantasy team at some point in '09, if not as soon as next week in certain situations.
The Birdman is back in the NBA after a two-year hiatus and is flying high once again. Only he's doing it better than he ever did before his banishment, particularly so in the blocks department. Andersen is third in the league in blocks with 2.24 per game, yet he's doing it in a mere 17.1 minutes a night. That translates to a ridiculous pace of 6.2 blocks per 48 minutes. As the Nuggets' only legit backup 4 or 5 (until they possibly make a move for a warm body about 7-feet tall), Andersen figures to be in line for a big boost in minutes as the wear and tear slows down
These past two weeks have shown us that Jack is a fantasy game-changer when he's starting.
Continuing the injury theme with this one -- a unifying characteristic for the vast majority of the recommendations in this edition of the Lab -- it wouldn't surprise anyone if
Power forwards who hit threes are few and far between -- aside from the other players on the Knicks roster. Still, Thomas is a rare bird in that he's capable of so much, yet chooses only to focus on the peculiar and less talented parts of his skill set. But
The second Pacer on this list, Rasho can be a decent third center when he's holding down the starting spot in Indy. Late last year in Toronto, and earlier this year, the Yugoslavian native was downright serviceable with scoring outputs of 20-plus points and dime sprees of up to 8 in an evening, aiding his sweet average (for a center) of 3.0 apg this season. Split stats from when he started of about 10 ppg, 5 rpg, 3 apg and 1 bpg, with strong FG and FT percentages, demonstrate he's capable of helping the tail end of your roster. If it wasn't for a six-turnover game that led to his benching, he'd probably be starting today. Rookie
The prize of the free agent market,
After starting the first seven games of the year, Johnson was demoted to the bench and then banished with five straight DNP-CDs in mid-December. Undaunted, the 21-year-old worked hard and stayed ready, allowing him to excel on Saturday in his temporary return to the starting role due to a
The Lab considered profiling SF/PF
And as a special bonus, inspired by those annoyingly catchy car commercial jingles stolen from terrible '80s music, the following is a player owned in 0 percent of leagues who could be very valuable sometime soon in the New Year ... if the theme of the article continues and a certain someone gets bit by the bug.
The diminutive Michigan native is
That's it for this week's rendition of the Fantasy Lab. Have a safe and happy New Year and remember: Fantasy Ball Above All.