2015-16 Fantasy Basketball: NBA Stock Market
Welcome to NBA Stock Market, a weekly article where I will take the temperature of certain players around the league. This will be designed to let you know who you should be trading for, and who it may be time to cut bait with. There will be two sections in this article, one being “stock rising,” meaning those players who are playing above their head, while “stock falling” will be for players who should be playing at a much higher level than they currently are. For the sake of the article we will only touch upon players with serious NBA cred. If James Anderson is having a bad week, we can just chalk it up to the fact that he isn’t very good. It is pretty self-explanatory. Without further ado, let’s get started.
Karl-Anthony Towns- C, Minnesota Timberwolves
The rookie phenom has been showing everyone why he was deserving of the No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft. In his last three games he has scored at least 17 points, grabbed at least 12 rebounds and blocked at least 3 shots, all in limited minutes. Towns has yet to receive more than 33 minutes in a game this season. Coming out of Kentucky, we all knew he could play, but no one expected him to have this much success this early in the season. He has shown a litany of offensive moves, including a silky smooth touch around the rim. His length has been showing as well, as he is blocking a ton of shots in the early going. The scary part about his game is that he is a very proficient shooter. He can step out from beyond the free throw line and knock down a mid-range jumper and he is a very smooth stroke from the foul line.
The buy low window has officially closed on Towns. If you were lucky enough to snag him in the middle rounds of drafts, go ahead and crack open some champagne, because you’ve earned it. He may very well finish the season with late first round value.
Paul George – PF, Indiana Pacers
After a slow start to the season PG13 has picked up his play in a big way. In his past five games he is averaging 30 points, nine rebounds and five assists while knocking down 2.5 treys per contest as well. We can chalk his slow start up to a combination of rust and adjusting to a new position. Frank Vogel said before the year he wanted George to play the four this season, in hopes that his rebounding total will rise and that the Pacers’ offense will be able to utilize their quickness more effectively.
Similar to Karl-Anthony Towns, the buy low window has slammed shut on PG. He is one of the most dynamic players in the NBA and his ability to fill up a stat sheet makes him a unique fantasy asset. Good luck trying to trade for him. If you selected George in the first round of drafts this season, you will continue to see a massive return on your investment.
Chris Paul – PG, Los Angeles Clippers
What has happened to CP3? He will enter play Thursday averaging career lows in assists and points. The Blake Griffin emergence to super stardom and the Clippers’ overall depth probably has something to do with his lower point total, but there is no reason why he should only be averaging eight assists. He has been battling a nagging groin injury this past week, so maybe we should give him the benefit of the doubt, but if his recent trend of play continues I will begin to worry.
Having said all that, this makes for the perfect time to trade for CP3. You will never be able to get better value for him than right now. Odds are his owners are extremely fed up with his play and probably assume old age has kicked in. These people would be incredibly foolish. CP3 is one of the greatest point guards in the history of this league, and is as tough a customer as they come. It would not be wise to count him out. Go offer up some trades while you still can.
Klay Thompson – SG, Golden State Warriors
If you are not a Klay Thompson owner, this is a dream scenario for you. I would sprint to the nearest computer and offer any trade possible for him. The only issue here is that the Warriors are so ridiculously good that his minutes have been capped. Golden State wins by about 30 points on a nightly basis, so playing in the fourth quarter is not necessary for Thompson. His numbers do not look good right now as he’s averaging a mere 15 points and four rebounds on the young season. There is nothing physically wrong with him though, and he did not forget how to shoot, I can promise you that.
The Warriors cannot continue this torrid pace that they are on, and even if they do, Klay will start posting monster lines sooner rather than later. Another reason for his slow start is that his backcourt mate and fellow splash brother, Stephen Curry, has been setting the world on fire with his play. Things will settle down for the defending champs, and when they do, Klay will be back to dropping 25 nightly with close to 4 treys per game. If you are Thompson owner, just sit tight, because good times are ahead.
For more fantasy basketball analysis, follow Landon on Twitter @LandonSilinsky