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The Specialists

Teague's Tornado

by Ethan Norof
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Nick Young, G/F Los Angeles Lakers: 3-pointers

 

Luke Walton has given new swag to the Lakers locker room and it’s a vibe that Young has been feeling really good about. After being written off by everyone in the offseason as a future ex-Laker, “Uncle P” has been provided new life in Walton’s regime and he’s done nothing but take advantage. Although the now 31-year-old Young can only be counted on to contribute in a couple of categories, he’s actually been fairly efficient when given the opportunity to shoot it this season fueled by the fact that he’s been on fire from behind the 3-point line.

 

Because he is a specialist, Young’s value on the fantasy trade market is squarely dependent upon the needs of the squad that you’re targeting in a deal. But for a guy with plenty of competition for minutes once D’Angelo Russell gets healthy, a history of inconsistency and nothing guaranteed, exploring the idea of selling now makes plenty of practical sense.

 

Editor's Note: The NBA Season Pass is up and running. Get weekly projections, rankings, the popular Pickups of the Day column, exclusive columns and customizable stat options. It's the extra tool that can take your fantasy basketball teams to the next level.

 

John Henson, F/C Milwaukee Bucks: Blocks

 

Anyone trying to sell you on the idea that they’ve figured out Jason Kidd’s rotations at center is likely doubling as a volcano insurance salesman. In reality, we’re all like Greg Monroe in that we’re just going along for the ride.

 

After going from starter to DNP-CD in the span of one game flat, Henson rebounded in a major way on Sunday with 20 points, seven boards, a steal and three blocks on 8-of-13 shooting in a season high 28.5 minutes of action. That’s going to cause a lot of folks to again hit the waiver wire with the hope of catching lightning in a bottle, and although Henson’s role could fluctuate based on Kidd's mood ring, his upside for blocks makes him worth a look if you need help in the category.

 

Marco Belinelli, G/F Charlotte Hornets: 3-pointers

 

Belinelli was looking a lot more appealing before sustaining a hamstring injury on Saturday, and now he’s got to deal with a healthy Jeremy Lamb who just erupted out of nowhere for 18 points and a career-high 17 rebounds during a cameo in the starting lineup in place of Nicolas Batum (eye) vs. New York. The ailment isn’t expected to be an issue of real concern for Belinelli, but Batum’s absence should be of the one-game variety and Lamb is someone who has at least earned the opportunity to play more minutes. Anyone with something to cut and in need of triples can give Belinelli a (quick) look, but anyone thinking this is something more than a bargain bin specialist based on a couple of fluky performances should quickly readjust expectations.

 

Jeff Teague, PG Indiana Pacers: Steals

 

It feels like Teague’s slow start to the season is something from distant memory and that’s because he’s really turned up the level of play as he’s grown more accustomed to his new surroundings. He could be pitched as somewhat of a sell-high target because he’s seen an inflated role with Paul George (ankle) in and out of the lineup of late, but Teague’s fantasy floor is as a solid mid-round pick even with PG-13 on the court.

 

The Wake Forest product has had a November to remember with averages of 16.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, 6.4 assists, 2.1 steals, 0.8 blocks, 1.1 3-pointers and 2.9 turnovers on 45.7% shooting, and he’s been especially good over his last seven contests by putting up 15.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, 7.6 assists and absurd 2.9 steals. Those concerns about Monta Ellis limiting Teague’s opportunities to initiate the offense have quickly gone by the wayside.

 

Kent Bazemore: 3-pointers

 

It boggles my mind that some of the same people who understand that basketball can be a game of runs can’t seem to wrap their brains around the idea that fantasy hoops can be a game of streaks. And if any player has exemplified that in extreme fashion this season, look no further than Mr. Bazemore.

 

Some will point to the $70-plus million contract he signed this offseason to remain in Atlanta. A few will point to the idea that Bazemore has more responsibility on his shoulders this season than he’s had prior. But what we should all recognize is a player whose value should stabilize in the 60-75-valuation range when it’s all said and done. You probably don’t have much of a buy-low window anymore after Bazemore predictably broke out of his mini-funk vs. the Lakers in a revenge game on Sunday night, but the next little slide he endures will provide another chance to smartly buy low on one of the more underappreciated players in fantasy hoops. 

Ethan Norof
Follow Ethan Norof on Twitter @Ethan_Norof for more fantasy basketball analysis, advice and all things Los Angeles Lakers.