Apr 14

Fantasy Basketball Week 25: Look Ahead to Next Season

As the Fantasy Basketball season is now effectively over, we’ll spend some of this week’s observations on a couple of players who can help you scrape that last point or two from this season’s team, and the rest on popular picks for breakout players next season who are finishing this season in promising fashion.



If Timofey Mozgov can get some playing time next year he will be a big time Fantasy Basketball player. (Getty Images)

Pick Up:

In 5 April games Aaron Brooks is averaging 16 points, 6.4 assists, 2 threes and 1.6 steals.  That matters because during that stretch starting Nuggets PG Ty Lawson has gone down for the season, essentially guaranteeing Brooks the ball. Like most teams, Denver plays 3 times in the last week of the season.

Timofey Mozgov has been the primary beneficiary of shots from Wilson Chandler’s injury, and over his last 6 has put up averages of 18.5 points, 9.5 boards, 1.7 blocks and .5 threes.  Yes, you read that last number right.  Apparently Mozgov added a three point shot to his arsenal a few weeks ago, and he’s pretty much been on fire ever since.  Yes, the stat line includes the shocking 29 rebound outlier, but Mozgov is likely the only big who can move the needle at all in most leagues.


Late Season Success Could Carry Over For:

Next year Michael Carter-Williams should be surrounded by some talent.  One of the team`s two high profile rookies, Nerlens Noel, will not necessarily be a big help on the offensive end right away.  The other could help, however.  When MCW hit the part of the season when rookies often fade, he did, and then the Turner trade changed the offense drastically.  MCW has put it back together since and has had a hot shooting April, which if nothing else gives hope for improvement in his one true fantasy weakness.

Jonas Valanciunas has racked up career high games in both points and rebounds in the last 2 games.  This has nothing to do with his recent DUI but a lot to do with Amir Johnson and his wonky ankle, which is giving Jonas much more run of the paint.  That’s not the whole story though.

Kenneth Faried had a huge March, averaging 19.2/9.8 with 1.4 steals – all best of any month.  Faried is my nomination of for the next player to get so overrated he becomes underrated.  He’s scoring even more in April, and the difference is a new post game.  It`s not good, but it`s a post game (more or less).  The Manimal will turn 25 towards the beginning of next season, so the post game should not be a shocking development at this point.

Speaking of surprising post game, Taj Gibson’s isn’t pretty, but it gets the job done, and that means he’s likely to see some opportunity on the block for a Bulls team that may look quite different than it did for most of this year.  His peak scoring month was actually February, when he averaged 16.9 points for an injury riddled team, but this career 9ppg scorer has clearly taken a step.  Rose could use a post presence next year, and Boozer watch will be on again this offseason.

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