Fantasy hoops thoughts

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Methinks things must have been rather tough in Croatia over the past 30 or so years. Just ask Peja Stojakovic.

On to the thoughts ...

• Methinks it will be fun to watch what Al Harrington can do in a wide-open offense. He should get more than 30 minutes of burn, so there's no excuse for him averaging fewer than 15 points, close to two treys, and around six boards per game ... with upside. Like I said: FUN.

• Methinks it won't work out so well having three start-worthy bigs in ClipperLand. Marcus Camby has already said he would come off the bench if it's for the good of the team, but why in the world would they ever start Zach Randolph next to Chris Kaman? The only difference in those guys' games is that Kaman will actually go up and block a shot. Put the defensive presence out there with a big who can board and score, and bring the other guy off the bench to spell both of them. If they don't start Camby and Randolph, we're looking at the "same old same old" in L.A. -- a team that just can't get its roster or rotation right.

• Methinks you were smart to listen to us in preseason when we warned you against drafting Jermaine O'Neal. If you didn't, surely you aren't stoked to watch him shoot just over 40 percent from the floor. But even worse, his surgically repaired knee is acting up again. Don't tell me that's a surprise. Dude hasn't played more than 69 games since 2003-04, and injury guys like that rarely rebound to play a full slate again, particularly big men with gimpy knees.

• Methinks that, if you missed the discussion about this topic on our BlogTalkRadio show last week, you should avoid starting all but your elite players against the Boston Celtics. Seriously, go look at their game logs, and you'll find a cornucopia of disappointing performances. After your top two or three players, take a serious look at employing your bench when your fringe starters have to take on the Celts.

• Methinks that a late first-round selection of Dwyane Wade might be the best value on many fantasy teams. But given what I've seen so far from Devin Harris, I have but one question: Where'd you take him again? Harris won't be averaging 30 points, but 20 isn't out of the question. Add in his adept passing abilities, sticky fingers in passing lanes, great percentages, and his greatly improved perimeter game over the past 18 months, and Harris is a potential fantasy star heading into next season. I wonder if Rod Thorn has gotten that raise he deserves after fleecing the Mavs so badly in switching out Jason Kidd for Harris last year.

• Methinks I was disappointed to see the Oklahoma City Thunder kick P.J. Carlisimo and Paul Westhead to the curb after a 1-12 start. I mean, c'mon, it's not like they choked anyone. Maybe I'm out of line here, but you have to give a coach more to work with than a bunch of young guys and pretenders if you plan to hold their feet to the fire when the losses pile up. On the other hand, perhaps a new coach will unleash Russell Westbrook and officially kick in the youth movement. This team will be lucky to have half as many wins as losses, so they should play for next year and give us fantasy owners something fun to watch. Interim coach Scott Brooks ... I'm talking to you. And I'm not asking that you start Damien Wilkins, because that doesn't help one bit.

• Methinks I'm starting to get a bit concerned about the state of Kevin Martin's ankle. Supposedly the ankle is healed, but now a tendon behind the Achilles tendon is swelling and collecting fluid. Supposedly nothing is torn according to an MRI, but something is amiss. Owners probably need to wait this out and keep their fingers crossed. Everyone else should look elsewhere for "buy low" opportunities, because this would be more risk than I'm willing to take on for the potential reward that Martin might offer.

• Methinks now is the time to sell high on super-rookie Derrick Rose. Not only is he on pace to improve in nearly every statistical category from his senior year in college, against superior/professional talent nonetheless, but Larry Hughes has already returned to steal some looks, and Kirk Hinrich will return around midseason to further complicate this situation. I won't talk too much about the "rookie wall," but just know that Rose played 40 total games as a senior at Memphis. If you completely ignore the summer league activities and the preseason games he played in, Rose will have played in 40 regular season games for the Bulls by Jan. 15. On top of that, he seemed to stay dinged up through the summer and again through the preseason. With him already smarting from a sore hip, what kind of wear and tear will 37 mpg do to him by the start of the new year? All signs say you need to cash in on him now, so if you decide not to deal Rose away, don't say you weren't warned.

• Methinks that some of the Denver Nuggets are having trouble adjusting after the big trade that sent Allen Iverson to the Pistons for Chauncey Billups and some throw-ins. In particular, Carmelo Anthony seems to have trouble getting open looks without defenses keying on A.I. I'm not worried one bit and would be looking to acquire his services if you have leaguemates who aren't so confident in his abilities. Sure, he's taking fewer shots from the field and the line and shooting horribly from the field lately. But he is on pace for career highs in boards (8.3) and assists (4.2), and he's still sinking the free throws and treys he is taking at career rates. His number of steals will improve and so will his shooting touch. Stay the course (or go get him if you can).

• Methinks that one of's preseason favorites, Marc Gasol, is performing even better than expected. He's big, he's experienced, and the team doesn't have much else to chew up his minutes on the floor. If you own him, congratulations. Enjoy the ride.

• While on the topic of the Grizzlies, Methinks we're starting to see signs of life from Mike Conley. Over his past three games (as of Sunday), he averaged 12.3 points, 5.0 assists, and 0.7 treys on 55.2 percent shooting. His free-throw shooting and other stats are still subpar, but pehaps these outbursts are earning him a larger piece of his timeshare with Kyle Lowry -- he has played at least 29 minutes in three of his previous four games. Watch this situation closely if Conley is a free agent in your league, because he just might end up delivering on his preseason sleeper status.

• Who out there remembers a guy named Doug Christie? You know, the defensive guru who made a name for himself during stints in Toronto and Sacramento with his great all-around play. Well, Mr. Christie is gracious enough to have accepted our invitation to appear on this week's Fantasy Basketball Internet radio show on BlogTalkRadio. Tune in on Saturday, Nov. 29 at 3 p.m. ET to hear his thoughts on yesterday and today's hoops talents.