RotoWire Partners

Category Strategy: Shumpert Blooming

James Anderson

James Anderson

James "Thunder" Anderson is an editor, radio host and scribe at Rotowire, primarily focused on basketball and baseball. In 2013 he was a FSWA finalist for Fantasy Basketball writer of the year. He is a proud University of Minnesota alum, with allegiances to the Packers, Brewers, Bucks (sigh) and Gophers (double sigh).


Each week, this article highlights players who are widely available in standard leagues that can help in specific roto categories. Remember, while each player highlighted can help in a specific category, there's no guarantee for production in other areas.


Randy Foye, SG, Nuggets
Foye has really taken advantage of coach Brian Shaw's spat with veteran Andre Miller, who is now on the trade market, and unlikely to take the court again for the Nuggets. Since Miller last took the court (Dec. 30), Foye has averaged 17.7 points on 50.7 percent shooting from the field in 34.3 minutes per game over six contests. He's also been good for 4.7 boards, 3.7 assists and 3.3 three-pointers per game over this stretch, which makes him worth owning in most formats, at least until he cools off. He's a career 40.8 percent shooter, so while I'd recommend scooping him up (primarily because of the 34.3 mpg, as opposed to 23.6 mpg before Miller's benching), if you already own him in a deeper league, I might try to sell high right now, before he inevitably cools off. Still, his significant run means he should be owned in more than just 46 percent of Yahoo! leagues and 23.3 percent of ESPN leagues. Gerald Green, Jodie Meeks, C.J. Miles and Marco Belinelli are other solid options here.


Kris Humphries, PF, Celtics
Full disclosure: I'm a big Hump supporter as he's a fellow Golden Gopher, and I think he got a raw deal from the Kardashians. I probably shouldn't be recommending Hump, but his recent numbers have provided me an opening, and I'm going to take it. He has started the last three games for the Celtics, and over his last seven games, he has averaged 11.4 points and 9.4 rebounds while shooting 50 percent from the field and 90.9 percent from the free-throw line in 28.2 minutes per game. I'd still prefer to have Jared Sullinger (available in almost 50 percent of leagues), who's been coming off the bench, just because he is more well-rounded and is more of a long-term asset for Boston, which makes me more confident in his playing time over the rest of the season. That said, as long as Hump is seeing close to 30 minutes per game, you can bank on solid rebounding numbers, as that's the one thing he's offered his entire career, boasting 11 rebounds per 36-minutes for his career. He is owned in 38 percent of Yahoo! leagues and just 6.4 percent of ESPN leagues. Terrence Jones is another guy, along with Sullinger, that I'd rather own than Hump, but I'm guessing he is already owned by most people reading this because of how hard I've pimped him in this space. Jones hasn't been a consistent scorer, but he's averaging 11.2 rebounds in less than 30 minutes per game over the past two weeks and is available in more than 50 percent of leagues.


Brian Roberts, PG, Pelicans
Desperate times call for desperate measures, and I'm probably one of Roberts' biggest supporters. If you want assists, Roberts (available in more than 80 percent of leagues) is probably the best option out there after Jrue Holiday's tibia injury, which has him sidelined indefinitely. The Pelicans would be a perfect landing spot for Andre Miller, and the thought of him running pick and rolls with Anthony Davis is tantalizing, but as of now, Roberts could be the guy at the point in The Crescent City. He had eight assists in a start Saturday, but the Pelicans were also without Tyreke Evans, who was out with a sprained ankle. Upon Evans' return, Roberts might not be a lock for significant run, but Evans hasn't started at point guard in quite some time, so I could see coach Monty Williams still opting to play him off the ball quite a bit. If Roberts doesn't do it for you, guys like D.J. Augustin and Mo Williams are out there. So, as I said, these are desperate times.


Iman Shumpert, SG, Knicks
Shumpert is averaging 2.2 steals per game over the past two weeks, while also seeing 33 minutes per game. He's a guy who should have been doing a lot more this season based on his talent and the dearth of talent surrounding him in New York's backcourt, and he may finally be ready to offer real fantasy value. Shumpert also gets a leg up over the likes of DeMarre Carroll, who is also a good option here, but who doesn't contribute quite enough in other categories to be a really attractive option. Shumpert is available in 50 percent of ESPN leagues and 70 percent of Yahoo! leagues. Jodie Meeks, Corey Brewer and C.J. Miles are other options here.


James Johnson, SF, Grizzlies
Why Johnson still comes off the bench and Tayshaun Prince remains a starter in Memphis is beyond me, but he has been seeing more minutes than Prince lately and is a true across-the-board contributor in fantasy. Over the past two games, Johnson is averaging just more than 30 minutes per game and has four blocks over that span, which is perfectly reasonable given his 1.9 blocks per-36 minute average for his career. Getting that kind of production from the small forward position is pretty valuable, and he's available in more than 85 percent of leagues.


C.J. Miles, SG, Cavaliers
Obviously, Miles' 10 makes from downtown in last week's game against the Sixers will artificially enhance his stats, as he's not likely to go for five three-pointers in a game anytime soon, let alone double-digits. But that big game is significant for other reasons, as it's likely to give him the constant green light in his head for the rest of the season, and it should help him see solid run for coach Mike Brown, as a proven source of instant offense. Even if we remove that outlying performance, he's still averaging two three-pointers per game in his previous four contests and is also a solid contributor in most of the other key categories for wing players. Miles is owned in 26 percent Yahoo! leagues and 20.7 percent of ESPN leagues. Terrence Ross and Marco Belinelli are other good options for three-point shooting.