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It's NY vs. LA in the battle to land superstar Carmelo Anthony before the trade deadline, and the Denver Nuggets doing a deal with either the Knicks or the Lakers could have some interest fantasy implications.
In New York, 'Melo, SF/PF, would become part of a faster offense that would probably need him to score early and often, with the possibility that both Wilson Chandler, SF/PF and Danilo Gallinari, SF, or Landry Fields, SG/SF (though maybe all three) could be shipped elsewhere in the trade.
In Los Angeles, 'Melo would be playing second fiddle to Kobe Bryant, SG. I don't see him taking points away from Kobe, do you? From a fantasy perspective, if you have Anthony, the better destination is the Knicks.
Meanwhile, some of the bargaining chips in these competing trade offers also would be affected. LA would send Andrew Bynum, C, to Denver. Bynum missed the first 24 games of the season and is still not really up to par. With Bynum, Denver would have a glut of injury-prone centers, since they already have oft-injured Nene Hilario and Chris Andersen, who also missed the first month of the season and is slowly making his way back. Bynum would be Denver's starting center of the future, but things could be dicey for the remainder of this season.
In a New York deal, Chandler at the very least would be headed to Denver, but the Knicks may have to add someone else. Corey Brewer, SG/SF, Minnesota also could be going to Denver if it becomes a three-way deal (In that case, the dead weight of Eddy Curry and Anthony Randolph could go to the Timberwolves).
Chandler has been having a great season, but if you think the Knicks' fast-paced offense should get most of the credit for that, you would not be alone. Chandler would score in Denver, but not as much. Brewer is not really a fantasy factor unless you're in a 12-team league where the steals category is especially contentious (he averages 1.6 per game), and Curry and Randolph are completely worthless.
If New York has to throw in Gallinari to Denver, the streaky but prolific shooter is a better, more direct replacement for Anthony than Chandler would be. If Gallinari stays and 'Melo comes to New York, it's bad news for Gallinari, as there won't be room for two shot-first-assist-never players in the Big Apple. If it's Fields who heads to Denver, he would have to battle for minutes and shots with J.R. Smith, SG/SF.
The NBA trade deadline is Feb. 24, so stay tuned.
* SI.com says you can find fantasy value on even the lowliest NBA teams. Including Cleveland? Yes.
* Bleacher Report says Amir Johnson, PF, Toronto, is on the rise. He's averaged a double-double over the last few games.
* HoopsWorld updates its Top 100 player rankings.
* Sports Grumblings says it's time to get rid of Gilbert Arenas. Isn't it always time?
Fantasy Football Fix
What did we learn from the Super Bowl, besides that Groupon should have sold itself to Google and kept its mouth shut?
Well, if it hadn't already been settled, Aaron Rodgers definitely position himself as a first-round fantasy draft pick next season.
I have been a fantasy fan of Rodgers for awhile, and would have taken him as the first QB this past season, but until the last few games he wasn't living up to the hype.
His Week 16 game against the NY Giants changed that, and his postseason run ensured Peyton Manning, Philip Rivers and Drew Brees will have to wait their turn to be picked next season.
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