This article is part of our Rebound & Rant series.
Each NBA team has roughly 7-8 games left, so there is still time to make moves to alter your fantasy league standings. Heck, that's 10% of the season. And to illustrate some possible tactics, we're going to bring a little more acclaim to some 2018 Service To America medal winners, otherwise known as the #Sammies. (And of course I'll throw in some other amusing tid bits.)
What, you are not familiar with the Partnership for Public Service's efforts to bring much deserved acclaim and attention to successful federal workers!?! Shame on you (I'm kidding). If you're like me, you'd love to see less political theater and more "getting the job done!" from our government. These federal employees have done just that, accomplishing great things and making America a better place to live!
PLAY THE PERCENTAGE GAME
I'm in second place in the heralded RW Expert Keeper League. My only chance to win it all is to make strides in field goal and free throw percentages. That means counting stats and number of games be damned! I need to play as many bigs as possible, ideally bigs that can also hit free throws. It means playing Ivica Zubac over Joe Ingles (side note: what the heck happened to Uncle Ingles' shooting this year?). It means starting Derrick Favors over Al-Farouq Aminu (though DF's free throw shooting isn't great). It means filling all your utility spots with layup driven big men and a few shot selective guards. Consider these "percentage game" free agents for the stretch run:
Any you know who is working tirelessly to reduce the percentage chance of American kids getting autism? Dr. Marshalyn Yeargin-Allsopp of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, that's who! She "pioneered research to understand the prevalence of autism and other developmental disabilities, influencing the expansion of health, social and educational services for children with special needs" and received the 2018 Career Achievement Service to America Award. Learn more here:
AVOID INJURED LAKERS
OK, this isn't really a tactic. It's just an excuse to insert this completely awesome video of Charles Barkley criticizing LaVar Ball.
FOCUS ON DEFENSE
Every year, steals and blocks receive less attention than points and rebounds. But in your typical Roto or Head-to-Head league, they are just as important. If you're the under dog in a tough head-to-head playoff game, think about focusing on the less glitz categories of steals, blocks, TO's and percentages and put points and rebounds. That might mean playing a DeMar DeRozan over a Trae Young type. Or maybe Montrezl Harrell over Blake Griffin (who's averaging only 0.9 steals + blocks per game over the last 30 days). And lookee here, Patrick Beverley is still only owned in 54% of Yahoo leagues. Here are a few defensive minded free agent possibilities:
And you know who else you can trust for great defense? Margaret Moeser of the Justice Department and Karen Dodge of the Federal Trade Commission, winners of the 2018 Homeland Security and Law Enforcement Service to America medal. Per the award, Dodge and Moeser "brought justice and restored financial losses of nearly $600 million for hundreds of thousands of people who were defrauded by money transfer scams." Boom! Good work Molly and Karen! Learn more:
RELY ON CAGEY VETERANS LIKE DWYANE WADE
Don't look now, but Dwyane Wade is ballin', as he's trying to carry Miami into the 8th playoff spot in the East. Over his past six games, he's averaging 17.8 points, 5.5 boards and 3.3 dimes per contest while shooting 47.7% percent from the field. Seriously! He's have a pretty darn useful swan song ending.
Speaking of the Heat, you probably noticed they retired Chris Bosh's number (1) last night. Here's all 27 minutes the nice half-time ceremony:
Wade and Bosh are both wise NBA veterans. And you know who did an amazing job of aiding U.S. Military Veterans in 2018? Marcella Jacobs and the VA Digital Service Team, that's who! Jacobs won the 2018 Service for America Medal for Management Excellent for creating "online digital tools for veterans to more easily access benefits and services, delivering a high-quality and seamless user experience." Who deserves our best service more than U.S. Military Veterans? Learn more here:
A hearty THANK YOU to all our 2018 Service to America Medal nominees and winners. Heck, there are six other winners I didn't get to highlight, so please go check out their web page.
My inspiration for highlighting these fantastic federal employees comes from two sources. First, my fabulous step-dad worked his entire professional career as an analyst for the CIA, helping protect America from outside forces. Second, I recommend everyone read Michael Lewis' The Fifth Risk to fully appreciate how federal employees work hard and sacrifice more lucrative careers to make America a better place to live. THANK YOU FEDERAL WORKERS!!!