Fantasy Basketball Week 13 Mailbag: Deal Markelle Fultz for Marcus Smart? Hold on to Mitchell Robinson?
Mike Barner delivers his Fantasy Basketball mailbag to help with lineup decisions and close trade calls.
Believe it or not, we are almost halfway through the NBA season.
Even with such a significant portion of the campaign in our rearview mirror, there is still time to make up ground if you need to in your Fantasy basketball league. Among the topics that I will discuss in this week's mailbag column is whether or not it's time to move on from Mitchell Robinson and what to make of Markelle's Fultz's recent production.
If you have a question that you'd like answered in next week's column, reach out to me on Twitter @rotomikebarner.
Fultz has provided a few juicy stat lines lately, including posting 25 points, five rebounds, four assists, two steals and two 3-pointers last week against the Nets. While his numbers still aren't off the charts, he's come a long way from being a bust with the Sixers, averaging 11.5 points, 3.2 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.3 steals a game. His percentages have even been respectable with him shooting 46.1 percent from the field and 72.9 percent from the charity stripe.
To answer the first part of this question, yes, I do think his current averages are sustainable with some room for him to be even more productive. The Magic have been hammered by injuries, so they are going to need him to step up during the second half as they push to make the playoffs.
Since Roy is punting field goal percentage, we don't have to worry about Smart shooting an abysmal 37.6 percent from the field. While he mostly comes off the bench for the Celtics, he's always one injury away from being thrust into a huge role. His averages are nearly identical to Fultz at 11.6 points, 3.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 1.5 steals. However, he's also averaging two 3-pointers a contest, which is a big upgrade over Fultz's average of 0.5 a night.
This is pretty close to a toss-up for me, so if you need the 3-pointers, then I'd make the deal to add Smart.
Which player would you rather have for the rest of the season: Miles Bridges or P.J. Washington? I've been really high on Bridges but he keeps disappointing me. Washington's minutes are rock solid. -- @RoyShimron
Roy came in with two good questions this week, so he gets both answered. The Hornets continue to work on developing their young roster with both Bridges and Washington checking in as key parts of their future. Bridges is averaging nine more minutes a game this season compared to his rookie campaign, which has propelled him to average 12.2 points, 5.5 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.5 3-pointers. Meanwhile, the rookie Washington was immediately thrust into a starting role and has come through with averages of 12.4 points, 5.5 rebounds, two assists, 0.9 steals, 0.9 blocks and 1.4 3-pointers.
The problem with Bridges is that he can be frustrating. Case in point, entering Monday's contest against the Blazers, he had averaged 16 points, 7.2 rebounds, three assists, 1.2 steals, one block and two 3-pointers across his previous five contests. However, he couldn't get anything going against the Blazers, logging two points and two rebounds over just 18 minutes. Like Roy's previous question, this is a close one. One big difference between these two is that Bridges is shooting 79.2 percent from the free-throw line while Washington is only shooting 68.4 percent. Ultimately, I'd lean towards Bridges as I think he has the higher floor of the two.
What do I do with Marvin Bagley III? I had high hopes for him and drafted him high but it seems like every time he gets rolling, he ends up injured. - @DaglesBagels
It's been such a disappointing season for Bagley. He went down after the Kings' season opener, missing the next 22 games. Then after a brief eight-game return that saw him come off the bench six times, he went down with yet another injury. Eight more missed games later, he made his return to action Monday against the Magic.
As was the case the last time he came back from injury, the Kings brought Bagley off the bench and limited him to 23 minutes. Still, he cashed in with 18 points, six rebounds and two blocks. His upside is extremely high when he's healthy, so I certainly wouldn't cut bait with him now that he's back on the floor. If you are worried about his status for the rest of the season, wait until he has a few games back in the starting five under his belt before shopping him around in your league. However, I wouldn't deal him for a discounted return. If he can stay healthy, he has the potential to be a difference maker down the stretch.
Would you drop Mitchell Robinson for Tristan Thompson? I know we've been on Robinson all year, but the turnaround isn't happening soon enough. This is a 10-team, 8-category league. - @esveeone
Robinson looked primed for a breakout campaign this season, then the Knicks went on a weird shopping spree in which they stocked their frontcourt, leaving Robinson on the outside looking in with regards to playing time. He's only logged at least 30 minutes in a game one time all season and has had 13 games in which he has logged fewer than 20 minutes. The one encouraging stat is that despite his average of 22 minutes a game for the season, he's blocked 1.7 shots per contest.
The Knicks are not going to make the playoffs, so they would be wise to shop Bobby Portis and Taj Gibson. If one or both of them does get traded, Robinson could be in line for a significant boost in playing time, provided he can stay out of foul trouble. In a league this shallow, though, I'm on board with dropping him for Thompson, who has a much more reliable role and is basically a walking double-double. He's even averaging a career-high 2.2 assists. However, keep your eyes out for any potential Knicks trades and be ready to pounce on Robinson should they free up some minutes for him.
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