Every fantasy basketball player knows what happened Tuesday night.
The return of the NBA season doesn't come without weeks of agonizing through the preseason and praying your drafted players don't get injured (I hate you,
Which is precisely why the Fantasy Lab, in its glorious return to SI.com, needn't waste your time reviewing what you surely saw with your own two eyes.
Yes, what happened yesterday is well documented by the time this article is live, and any competitive league has likely seen the proper transactions already executed --
Not every guy on this list will bust out tomorrow -- that would be impossible -- but there should be some names on here you weren't even considering drafting as recently as this past weekend. There are probably some guys listed below that you've never even heard of (remember
Minnesota is already without
Tonight will mark this fifth-year veteran's first ever start in the NBA. Expect him to make it a special night, especially against the team that sent the Sixers packing in last year's playoffs. As a reserve, Williams proved to be a more than capable scorer. Using that ability as a threat will draw help defenders creating open looks for teammates and dimes for Williams. He'll probably crack 20 points tonight, but you're going to have to deal with some category-dragging FG% and 3PT%, but in more-standard 3PM leagues, his value there will be buoyed simply by the number of threes he jacks up on a nightly basis. Sweet Lou has a legit shot to be the number two scorer on the squad -- if he's not too busy feeding others and posting more assists than anticipated.
The Clippers will be playing for a second straight night and while they should be fresh this time of year, there's nothing like the first real game of the season to give you some tired legs the next day. Plus, the team is lacking in frontcourt depth with Blake Griffin out Hill will take advantage of some poor defenders in
With everyone's favorite breakthrough player,
It seems too many people in fantasyland have forgotten about the man known affectionately as Curly. Krstic showed a little rust when he returned for the final quarter of the season last year, but he's six months more removed from his ACL surgery and the skills never really diminished. Showing a great touch on his face-up jumper and able to shoot a good enough percentage from the line, Krstic is a player who can average 14 and 7 and a block per night on this Thunder squad as the eldest starter at just 26 years old. He should excel in a favorable matchup with the Kings who seem to be inexplicably starting
This rookie is going to feast on a depleted New Orleans front line expecting to be without
The hype machine was set in motion earlier this preseason when Coach D'Antoni labeled the Italian "the best shooter I've ever seen." Cruising along just below the radar at this point thanks to a bench role, the Lab has a good feeling the machine is about to kick into overdrive tonight. Facing a defenseless Miami squad, the Knicks will be up to their three-point shooting tricks and there's a strong chance that Gallinari will lead that barrage. Obviously he has the coach's full confidence and D'Antoni doesn't want to burden him with the weight of the franchise by starting him, but if he splashes a few from downtown, everyone's going to go crazy for "The New Peja."
This one's a bit of a flier, but Ii's history in the making tonight when Casspi becomes the first Israeli to play in the NBA. Though he won't start due to some virus called
Hopefully that'll hold you over until next week's Fantasy Lab, published right here every Wednesday. In the meantime, for more fantasy basketball advice and NBA musings, please head over to the new basketball blog,