Rudy Gay
Rudy Gay
33-Year-Old ForwardF
San Antonio Spurs
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Gay will be back in San Antonio this season after signing a two-year, $32 million deal to return to the Spurs. Despite starting 51 games last season, Gay played the second-fewest minutes (26.7) of his career. Gay enjoyed his most efficient shooting season as a pro, shooting 50.4 percent from the floor and 40.2 percent from downtown. He managed just 13.7 points per game -- the third-lowest mark in his career -- though he did that on a respectable 10.8 shots per contest. Gay was forced into the starting lineup frequently last season due to a variety of injuries to his teammates, though he is expected to primarily come off the bench in his 14th season. His defensive efforts have been minimal over the last two seasons, but Gay is still a good source of rebounds, pulling down a career-high 6.8 boards in 2018-19. The 33-year-old veteran may not put up the big point totals we saw in Memphis and Sacramento, but if he can maintain his newfound efficiency, he'll be a valuable fantasy asset. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year, $32 million contract with the Spurs in July of 2019.
Personal Bio

Rudy Carlton Gay Jr. was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Rae and Rudy Sr. He began playing competitive recreational basketball in his hometown of Baltimore when he was 12 years old. Gay attended Eastern Technical High School in Essex, Maryland, for two years before transferring to Archbishop Spalding High School in Severn, Maryland, during his junior year. He played basketball for Spalding for two years, earning first team All-Baltimore Catholic League honors as a junior and senior. During his senior year, Gay averaged 21.2 points, 9.2 rebounds and 3.7 blocks per game. He was named the Baltimore Sun's co-player of the year, the Washington Post All-Met Basketball Player of the Year, a McDonald's All-American and a Parade first-team All-American. Since joining the NBA, Gay has taken part in a number of charitable activities. In 2010, he was named an ambassador for the Hoops for St. Jude fundraising program for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis. Gay donated $20,000 to the program, which raised funds by allowing donors to pledge a set amount of money for each point scored by Gay and other participating NBA players. As a result of his actions, Gay was awarded the NBA Cares Community Assist Award for March of 2010. That resulted in a $5,000 donation from the NBA to the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, and Gay kicked in another $22,222 of his own money. Gay also founded the Flight 22 Foundation in his hometown of Baltimore, with the aim to serve "as the runway to helping school-aged children in under served communities take flight." Learn more about Gay by following him on Twitter (@RudyGay) and on Instagram (@rudygay).

College/International Summary

Gay led the University of Connecticut in points (15.2) and steals (1.8) per game while checking in second on the team in assists (2.1) and third in rebounds (6.4) during the 2005-06 season. The Baltimore, Maryland native earned All-Big East First Team honors on the strength of those accomplishments, which came in what was his sophomore campaign. He led the Huskies to the Elite Eight in the 2006 NCAA Tournament before losing to George Mason in overtime. Gay was named to the 2005-06 All-America Second Team. In his 2004-05 freshman year, Gay collected the Big East Rookie of the Year award after averaging 11.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game. Gay announced that he would enter the 2006 NBA Draft after his sophomore year. He was drafted by the Houston Rockets with the eighth overall pick and then was traded a couple days later to the Memphis Grizzlies.

Drops 24 points Monday
FSan Antonio Spurs
August 3, 2020
Gay totaled 24 points (9-15 FG, 2-4 3Py, 4-4 FT) and four rebounds in 24 minutes during Monday's 132-130 loss to the 76ers.
ANALYSIS
Gay has been shooting the ball well and that trend continued during Monday's loss. Now a permanent fixture on the second unit, Gay appears to have embraced his new role. As age catches up with him, Gay's fantasy value is typically reliant on his ability to score. This makes him a more attractive option in points formats, though he should be rostered in most competitive leagues.
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Past Season Summaries
2019

The 2019-20 season was Gay's 14th season in the Association and his third with the Spurs. The 33-year-old appeared in 60 out of 63 possible games for San Antonio, with five starts. The veteran forward averaged 10.0 points, 5.4 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 three-pointer, 0.5 blocks and 0.4 steals over 21.5 minutes per game. Gay has averaged at least 1.0 three-pointer a game in five of his last six season. In 2019-20, the versatile forward shot 44.2 percent from the field, 31.4 percent from behind the arc, and a career-best 87.6 percent from the free throw line. Gay opened the season on Oct. 23 with 13 points, six rebounds, three assists, a steal and a block during a home win over the Knicks. He got hot in mid-November. In seven games from Nov. 11 to Nov. 22, Gay averaged 15.3 points, 5.4 boards, 1.9 assists and 1.6 three-pointers in 23.7 minutes per contest. To end the span, Gay scored a season-high 22 points, with four boards, in a loss at Philadelphia. On Dec. 16, Gay double-doubled via 12 points, 12 rebounds and three assists during a 2-point loss at Houston. Gay had four double-doubles for the season. On Feb. 29, Gay posted 19 points, six boards, four dimes, two blocks and steal during a 1-point home win over the Magic. For the season, Gay reached double digits points in 29 games.

2018

2018-19 marked Gay's 13th season in the NBA. The UConn product seemingly took a swig from the Fountain of Youth as he refined his game and set a number of career marks. He played in 69 games, starting 51, and averaged 26.7 minutes per contest. As has been the case often in his career, Gay took a lot of shots. However, he was more efficient than ever last season. Gay made 50.4 percent of his field goals, which was a personal best for him. He also made a personal-best 40.2 percent of his three-point shots. He added to his list of career-best numbers by averaging 6.8 rebounds per contest. Gay had some games in which he turned back the clock, including a 31-point outing in December that was his first game with over 30 points since joining the Spurs. The former lottery pick also made significant contributions during San Antonio's first-round playoff clash against Denver. In the seven-game series, Gay averaged 11.1 points and 7.1 rebounds while shooting 42.1 percent from behind the arc.

2017

After over three years with Sacramento, Gay signed with the San Antonio Spurs prior to the 2017-18 campaign. Despite suffering a ruptured Achilles tendon the previous January, Gay was ready to play by the start of the regular season. He scored 14 points and grabbed five rebounds against Minnesota in his debut with the Spurs on Oct. 18. Gay went on to score in double figures in each of his next three games as the Spurs started the season with four straight wins. The veteran forward appeared in 57 games. He logged 21.6 minutes per contest. On the season, Gay averaged 11.5 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.3 assists. A right heel injury sidelined Gay for nearly two months from late December to late February, but he found his groove at the end of the regular season, scoring in double digits in five of his final six games. In the postseason, Gay played in all five games during San Antonio's first round series against Golden State. He posted per-game averages of 12.2 points, 5.6 rebounds and 1.6 steals.

2016

Gay got off to a strong start during the 2016-17 campaign, scoring 22 points in a season-opening win against Phoenix. He went on to score at least 22 points in three of his next four games, topping out at 30 against Miami on Nov. 1. Overall, Gay scored in double figures in all but two of the games in which he played for Sacramento during the season. He collected four double-doubles, including a 29-point, 14-rebound effort against Portland on Nov. 11. On Jan. 13 and 15, he registered back-to-back double-doubles against Cleveland and Oklahoma City. Unfortunately, Gay's campaign came to an end soon thereafter as a result of a ruptured Achilles tendon suffered on Jan. 18. On the season, the veteran forward played in 30 contests, the lowest total of his career. He posted per-game averages of 18.7 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.8 assists. Defensively, Gay averaged 1.5 steals and 0.9 blocks. He continued to grow from beyond the arc, as his 1.4 treys per game and 37.2 three-point percentage were both the second best marks of his career.

2015

Gay again served as a stable frontcourt force for the Kings in his second full season with the club. He played in 70 games, all as a starter, and averaged 34.0 minutes per contest. The veteran forward averaged a career-high 6.5 rebounds per game along with 17.2 points and 1.7 assists. Gay also recorded 1.4 steals and 0.7 blocks per contest. He converted 1.1 three-pointers per game, knocking down 34.4 percent of his attempts from deep. Gay made 46.3 percent of his field-goal attempts overall and 78.0 percent of his attempts from the free-throw line. The University of Connecticut product scored a season-high 36 points in a win over Milwaukee on Nov. 25. He grabbed a season-best 14 boards against Portland on Dec. 27. Gay totaled seven double-doubles during the campaign, including a 20-point, 13-rebound effort versus Miami on April 1. On Dec. 15, he established a career high with six steals in a win over Houston.

2014

Gay enjoyed a season stability with Sacramento in 2014-15. He played in 68 games for the Kings, making 67 starts and averaging 35.4 minutes per contest. He averaged a career-high 21.1 points per game, ranking 12th in the NBA. Gay also averaged 5.9 rebounds and a career-high 3.7 assists. He posted his second-best season from deep, averaging 1.2 three-pointers per game and shooting 35.9 percent from beyond the arc. Overall, the 6-foot-8 forward knocked down 45.5 percent of his field-goal attempts and a career-best 85.8 percent of his tries from the charity stripe. He scored a season-high 40 points against Portland on Oct. 31, making 13-of-19 shots from the field. On Dec. 2, he dished a career-high 10 assists while scoring 20 points and grabbing six rebounds against Toronto. Gay went off for 39 points, just shy of his season high, against Orlando on March 6. The veteran scored at least 30 points five times during the campaign.

2013

Gay began the 2013-14 campaign with Toronto, to whom he was traded the previous season. In 18 games with the Raptors, he posted per-game averages of 19.4 points, 7.4 rebounds, 1.6 steals and 1.3 blocks. He logged six double-doubles in those 18 contests, including a 17-point, 10-rebound performance against Phoenix on Dec. 6. That turned out to be Gay's last game as a Raptor. On Dec. 9, Toronto traded the veteran to Sacramento in a seven-player deal. Gay continued to thrive in 55 games (all as a starter) with the Kings. He combined for 50 points in his first two games with his new club and totaled at least 20 points in seven of his first 10 contests. Overall, Gay posted per-game averages of 20.1 points, 5.5 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.2 steals with Sacramento. He shot 48.2 percent from the field and 83.6 percent from the charity stripe. On Jan. 21, Gay scored a career-high 41 points in a win over New Orleans, adding eight rebounds and five assists.

2012

Gay began the 2012-13 season filling his usual key starting role for the Grizzlies. In 42 games with Memphis, he posted per-game averages of 17.2 points, 5.9 rebounds and 1.3 steals. However, Gay was traded to Toronto in a three-team deal on Jan. 30. The 6-foot-8 forward didn't miss a beat with his new club, slotting into a starting role immediately and scoring at least 20 points in each of his first five contests. Overall, Gay played in 33 games with the Raptors, averaging 34.7 minutes per contest. His numbers improved to 19.5 points, 6.4 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game with Toronto.

2011

Gay returned Memphis and played in 65 games (all as a starter) for the Grizzlies during the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season. He continued to get a heavy dose of playing time, averaging 37.3 minutes per contest. Gay was again a steady offensive performer, averaging 19.0 points and a career-high 6.4 rebounds per game. He also averaged 0.8 blocks, 1.5 steals and 0.8 three-pointers per contest. Gay tallied a season-high 32 points in a win over Phoenix on Apr. 11, adding seven rebounds and two steals. After missing last season's playoffs due to a shoulder injury, Gay got his first taste of the NBA postseason in 2012 as the Grizzlies finished fourth in the Western Conference. Gay performed well in Memphis' seven playoff games versus the Clippers, posting per-game averages of 19.0 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.3 steals.

2010

Gay's 2010-11 campaign -- his fifth with Memphis -- was his finest statistical season to date. He averaged 19.8 points per game and established career highs with per-game averages of 6.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists. Gay's shooting percentages -- 47.1 percent from the field, 80.5 percent from the free-throw line and 39.6 percent from three-point range -- were also all career bests. The 6-foot-8 forward posted his best defensive numbers as well, averaging 1.7 steals and 1.1 blocks per contest. The versatile forward also drained 1.1 three-pointers per contest. On Nov. 3, Gay scored a season-high 35 points against Golden State. He collected a career-best six blocked shots in a win over the Lakers on Nov. 30. Unfortunately, Gay's campaign came to a premature end due to a left shoulder injury that caused him to miss the final 23 games of the regular season and all of the playoffs.

2009

Gay was again a durable and productive player for Memphis in his fourth campaign. He started all 80 games in which he played, ranking third in the league by logging 39.7 minutes per game. Gay posted across-the-board improvements in his numbers over the previous season, averaging 19.6 points, 5.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 1.5 steals and 0.8 blocks per game. He also posted a career-best mark in field-goal percentage (46.6 percent). The University of Connecticut alum notched eight double-doubles during the campaign, including a 33-point, 10-rebound effort in a win over Philadelphia on Nov. 20. He scored a career-high 41 points in a victory over Miami on Dec. 13.

2008

In Gay's third NBA season, he remained an anchor of the Grizzlies' offense, leading the team in scoring with 18.9 points per game across 79 contests (78 starts). Gay remained an effective rebounder and ball thief, pulling down 5.5 boards and nabbing 1.2 steals per game. He made 1.1 three-pointers per game for the second straight year, shooting a slightly improved 35.1 percent from deep. Gay scored 20-plus points on 41 separate occasions and double-doubled six times. He poured in a season-high 35 points against the Clippers on Mar. 4, adding eight rebounds, four assists and two steals. Two weeks later, Mar. 18 against Denver, he scored another 30 points on 13-of-21 shooting. On Mar. 30, he established a career high with five blocked shots in a win over Golden State.

2007

Gay's playing time and production jumped dramatically in his second season. He played in 81 games for Memphis, all as a starter, and averaged 37.0 minutes per contest. Gay nearly doubled his scoring average to a team-leading 20.1 points per game, setting the franchise record for most total points in a season with 1,632. He improved his per-game averages in rebounding (6.2), assists (2.1), steals (1.4) and blocks (1.0) as well. The 6-foot-8 forward emerged as a legitimate three-point threat, averaging 1.7 treys per contest and shooting 34.6 percent from beyond the arc. Gay scored 30-plus points a dozen times, setting a new career high with 36 against the Suns -- twice. He also double-doubled 10 times, including a 34-point, 12-rebound effort Jan. 26 against the Clippers. For the second straight season, he was invited to participate in the Rising Stars Challenge during the All-Star break, matching his total from his rookie campaign with 22 points in the exhibition. He participated in the Slam Dunk Contest for the first time as well.

2006

Gay was selected by the Houston Rockets with the eighth overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft. His tenure with Houston was short-lived as the team traded Gay to Memphis a few weeks later. During his rookie campaign, Gay played in 78 games, starting 43 contests and averaging 27.0 minutes per game. His NBA career got off to a strong start as the 6-foot-8 forward won Rookie of the Month honors in November. On the season, Gay posted per-game averages of 10.8 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.3 assists. He was named to the All-Rookie First Team and finished third in Rookie of the Year voting.

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Transaction History
  • June 28, 2006
    Drafted by the Houston Rockets in the 1st round (8th pick) of the 2006 NBA Draft.
  • July 12, 2006
    Traded by the Houston Rockets with Stromile Swift to the Memphis Grizzlies for Shane Battier.
  • July 15, 2006
    Signed a multi-year rookie contract with the Memphis Grizzlies.
  • July 1, 2010
    Signed a five-year contract with the Memphis Grizzlies.
  • January 30, 2013
    As part of a 3-team trade, traded by the Memphis Grizzlies with Hamed Haddadi to the Toronto Raptors; the Detroit Pistons traded Austin Daye and Tayshaun Prince to the Memphis Grizzlies; the Memphis Grizzlies traded Jose Calderon to the Detroit Pistons; and the Toronto Raptors traded Jose Calderon, Ed Davis and a 2013 2nd round draft pick to the Memphis Grizzlies.
  • December 9, 2013
    Traded by the Toronto Raptors with Quincy Acy and Aaron Gray to the Sacramento Kings for Chuck Hayes, Patrick Patterson, John Salmons and Greivis Vásquez.
  • November 18, 2014
    Signed a three-year contract extension with the Sacramento Kings.
  • July 6, 2017
    Signed a two-year contract with the San Antonio Spurs.
  • July 11, 2018
    Signed a one-year contract with the San Antonio Spurs.
  • July 8, 2019
    Signed a two-year contract with the San Antonio Spurs.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
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After spending just over three years in Sacramento, Gay decided to join a playoff contender in the Spurs and took a fairly significant pay cut in doing so. Even with the change of scenery, injuries once again crept into the picture and Gay ended up missing a stretch of 23 games while dealing with bursitis in his left heel. That marked his second straight season playing less than 60 games. In addition to the the extended absence, Gay also saw his workload take a significant hit. The veteran averaged just 21.6 minutes, which was far-and-away a career low -- Gay averaged 33.8 minutes in his final season with Sacramento in 2016-17. He finished the campaign averaging 11.5 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.3 assists, while knocking down just 31.4 percent of his three-pointers. That kept him out of the picture in all but deeper Fantasy leagues, though his contributions as a mentor and as a reliable bench presence still made him a valuable basketball player for the Spurs. Looking forward to the upcoming season, Gay should have a chance at a bounce-back showing. The Spurs dealt superstar Kawhi Leonard to the Raptors in exchange for DeMar DeRozan. DeRozan should slot into the starting lineup at shooting guard, but Leonard's absence, as well as the departure of Kyle Anderson in free agency, means Gay has a clearer path to playing time at the two forward positions and seems destined to see a bump in his playing time. It will likely only be a slight jump considering the 31-year-old is coming off of two straight injury-plagued seasons, but it's encouraging nonetheless. All of that said, owners still may want to temper expectations a bit because of Gay's injury history and coach Gregg Popovich's propensity to rest his veterans at random points throughout the season.
Gay's 2016-17 campaign was marred by injury, with the 30-year-old forward rupturing his left Achilles tendon in January, which resulted in him missing the bulk of the season. That limited Gay to just 30 games, where he averaged 18.7 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.4 three-pointers across 33.8 minutes. While the recovery process has treated him well and he's fully expected to be ready by training camp, Gay is still heading into a situation that isn't going to benefit his Fantasy value. Gay surprisingly declined his $14.3 million player option to remain with the Kings and instead took a hefty discount to join a contender in the Spurs at just $8.4 million annually over two years. He'll be transitioning into a bench role for the first time since his rookie season and is largely expected to do most of his work behind the likes of Kawhi Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge at the two forward spots. When you add together the fact that he'll be playing behind one of the best players in the league, he's coming off a significant injury and he's playing for a coach that loves to rest his veteran players, Gay's value will likely take a significant hit. He's sure to see a decline in production across the board, although look for Gay to potentially settle in as the team's sixth man if he can stay healthy.
Gay filled his familiar role as the top sidekick to DeMarcus Cousins last season, but turned in one of his most disappointing years as a professional, with his 17.2 points and 1.7 assists per game both ranking as his third-lowest averages in 10 NBA seasons. Cousins’ climbing usage rate may have contributed to the demise of Gay’s role in the offense, as the veteran forward also attempted two fewer shots per game than the year before. On a positive note, Gay seemed to benefit from some cleaner looks, raising his mark from the field to 46.3 percent, while also noticing bumps in his rebounds (from 5.9 per game in 2014-15 to 6.5 in 2015-16) and steals (1.0 to 1.4). The 30-year-old enters the coming season as one of the Kings’ primary scorers, but the team has made it no secret that he’s on the trade block. As a 34.4 percent career three-point shooter who needs the ball and doesn’t add a ton of a defensive value, Gay doesn’t fit the mold for what most contending clubs are looking for, making it difficult for the Kings to shed his $13.3 million contract for 2016-17. Perhaps a reunion with new Kings coach Dave Joerger, who worked as an assistant in Memphis under Lionel Hollins when Gay was with the Grizzlies, could help ignite the forward’s trade value, but if not, he’ll still provide some quality counting stats and respectable marks from the field and free-throw line for those rostering him in fantasy leagues.
Entering the first year of a three-year, $40 million contract extension with Sacramento, Gay enjoyed one of the most productive seasons of his career. In 68 games played, Gay averaged 21.1 points and 3.7 assists while shooting 86 percent from the line, all which registered as career-highs. A midseason coaching change and emphasis on up-tempo play from George Karl seemed to invigorate Gay, who increased his offensive output to 23.9 points per game and shot 48 percent from the field and 39 percent from beyond the arc in the second half of the season. Gay's biggest strength is his ability to create his own shot and score from all over the court. His main weakness is his inability to maintain focus on the defensive end, along with getting caught up in isolation plays for himself on offense. Gay will now get the benefit of playing with a defensive-minded big man in rookie Willie Cauley Stein and a pass-first point guard in Rajon Rondo. Entering his 10th NBA season, Gay still possesses the talent to produce as an elite-level small forward this upcoming season.
A month-and-a-half into the 2013-14 season, the Raptors made the decision to send Gay and his inflated contract to the Kings in exchange for a package centered around Greivis Vasquez and Patrick Patterson. Prior to the deal, Gay was off to the worst start of his career, shooting 39 percent from the field while attempting a career-high 18.6 field goals per game. Gay would only play 18 games for the Raptors. Astonishingly, he failed to top 50-percent shooting in any of those games. After the trade, however, Gay was a different player. His scoring average saw a moderate bump, but it was the efficiency that caught the eyes of the league. In 55 games for Sacramento, Gay shot a career-high 48 percent from the field, despite making only 31 percent of his three-pointers – well below his career average of 34 percent. Gay's two-point percentage skyrocketed from a career-low (by far) 39 percent pre-trade, to a career-best 52 percent post-trade. He also added 5.5 rebounds and a career-best 3.1 assists per game. Over the summer, Gay exercised his $19.3 million player option for the 2014-15 season, as expected. He'll return to join DeMarcus Cousins in one of the most intriguing, but enigmatic frontcourt duos in the Western Conference. The Kings hope Gay can use the second half of last season and a summer with Team USA at the FIBA World Cup as a springboard to more consistent, efficient production.
In 33 games with the Raptors last season, Gay saw modest jumps from his Memphis numbers across the board in every counting stat. However, his production in those categories comes at a cost. The most disturbing development surrounding Gay's 2012-13 campaign was a steep drop off in efficiency from the field. In his previous five seasons, he shot between 45 and 47 percent from the field, but last season that fell to 42 percent while his field goals attempted per game stayed relatively constant. Gay has averaged better than 1.2 steals per game in every season since his rookie year, and he has steadily averaged around 6.0 boards per game, but he has also averaged 2.5 turnovers per contest for his career, and after joining the Raptors, that climbed to 2.9 per game, which, over a full season would represent a career high. Despite playing alongside similar players in DeMar DeRozan and Terrence Ross, Gay will have the freedom to hoist to his heart's content and could approach 20 points per game, but he's certainly not without his flaws.
Gay brings a lot to the table from a fantasy perspective, and his averages in the counting stats have been almost identical each of the past five seasons. The only negative on Gay’s resume from last season was his poor shooting from outside. He hoisted 2.7 threes per game, but only connected on 31.2 percent of them, down from 39.6 percent shooting from long range in 2010-11. After missing the end of the 2010-11 season with a dislocated shoulder, Gay returned last year and played in 65 of 66 games. He has averaged between 18-to-21 points per game each of the past five seasons, while maintaining a field goal percentage of 45 percent or better. He’s not much of a distributer, but his averages of 6.4 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 0.8 blocks helped keep him in the top tiers of small forwards to target in drafts.
Gay was one of only two players to average over one block, three-pointer, and steal per game last season, the other being Kevin Durant. Unfortunately for Gay’s owners, he dislocated his shoulder so badly he was forced to undergo season-ending surgery. Gay’s expected to be ready to participate in regular activity by September, putting him in great position to start the 2011-12 season. Through 54 games played last season, Gay averaged 19.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.1 three-pointer, 1.7 steals, 1.1 blocks, and 2.5 turnovers in 40 minutes. With his efficiency beyond the arc increasing last season, we might see Gay start to hoist up more three-pointers this season, a development that would raise his fantasy value even higher.
After his breakout 2007-08 season, there were a lot of reasons to be excited about Rudy Gay. About 134 of them, you could say, as that was the number of three pointers he hit. And as he was just entering his age-22 season, even the most conservative projections would've called for him to improve, both in that category and all across the board. But he didn't. Not at all. In fact, he regressed. In 2008-09, playing in only two fewer games than the season before, Gay's total three pointers dropped by 48, to 85. Basically everything else declined, as well: points per game (by over a point per game), rebounds (by 0.7), assists (0.3), steals (0.2), blocks (0.3), field goal percentage (by 0.9), and free throw percentage (by 1.7) – all this despite his playing time rising slightly. In retrospect, it's likely the arrival of O.J. Mayo had a bigger-than-expected effect, but even factoring in Mayo's touches beforehand, the downward trend was surprising. Appropriately, it was difficult to know what Gay's 2009-10 would look like, especially when accounting for the arrival of Zach Randolph – and, to a lesser extent, center Marc Gasol. Would Gay continue to decline? Would his touches dry up? All things considered, last season was probably almost as surprisingly pleasant as the previous season was disappointing. The three-point totals continued to recede (only 66 on the season), but most everything else saw a slight improvement. And with a very similar cast returning this season, it's reasonable to expect something similar.
Gay took a step back in his third NBA season, producing slightly worse numbers in all nine rotisserie categories after his stellar sophomore campaign. There’s reason to be optimistic about him, though, as he was extremely impressive during the Team USA practices this summer against the best young talent in the NBA. Gay is also entering a contract year, and has had a full season to get used to playing next to another high-scoring wing in O.J. Mayo on a Grizzlies team that, on paper looks like an up-and-comer. Gay is 6-9 with extremely long arms and outstanding leaping ability, with the quickness to defend most guards and the strength to hold his own at power forward. He has shown the ability to make an impact as a help defender and knock down the trey at a decent clip, and with two-year averages of almost 46 percent shooting from the field and almost 78 percent shooting from the line, he has the potential to be an eight-category contributor with assists as his only noticeable weak spot. If Gay does break out he has Danny Granger-type potential, making him a nice name to call a few rounds after Granger in your draft.
On physical ability alone, Gay’s potential has always been off the charts, but observers worried that he just didn’t like basketball all that much. Gay took a bit of a tumble in the 2006 Draft after developing a reputation for occasionally sleepwalking through games. But he woke up as a rookie with a campaign that earned him a first-team All-Rookie selection. As a sophomore he was even better, nearly doubling his scoring average to 20.1 points per game while posting significant improvement in his shooting percentages and every significant roto category. Primarily a wing, the 6-9 Gay has developed the strength to play on the low block at times – which may be necessary on a Memphis team that looks terribly thin in the big man department. But he hasn’t sacrificed the speed and agility that make him a very tough assignment for most threes, and an emerging long-range shooting touch (1.7 threes per game in 2007-08) will make him even harder to defend.
Gay is a tremendous physical specimen, 6-9, with the wingspan of a pterodactyl and “leap-out-of-the-gym” athleticism. He’s blessed with all the tools to emerge as a superstar in the NBA. But questions about his mental approach – and a tendency to disappear during games he should have dominated at the college level – knocked him out of contention to be the top pick in the 2006 draft. Memphis grabbed him with the eighth overall pick and was rewarded with a first team All-Rookie performance. Gay finished the year by averaging almost 14 points and six rebounds after the All-Star break. Gay also had a strong showing at the Las Vegas Summer League this past summer, and with a full season under his belt he could be on tap for a breakout sophomore campaign.
More Fantasy News
Produces 19 points in restart
FSan Antonio Spurs
July 31, 2020
Gay scored 19 points (8-15 FG, 3-5 3Pt) while adding eight rebounds, an assist and a block in 26 minutes during Friday's 129-120 win over the Kings.
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Scores 23 points in 21 minutes
FSan Antonio Spurs
July 28, 2020
Gay registered 23 points (7-12 FG, 3-7 3Pt, 6-6 FT), five assists, four rebounds and one steal in 21 minutes during Tuesday's 118-111 scrimmage win over the Pacers.
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Puts up shots off bench
FSan Antonio Spurs
March 9, 2020
Gay finished Sunday's 132-129 overtime loss to the Cavaliers with 19 points (7-19 FG, 3-9 3Pt, 2-2 FT), nine rebounds, two blocks and one steal.
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Scores in double digits again
FSan Antonio Spurs
March 7, 2020
Gay posted 15 points (6-9 FG, 1-4 3Pt, 2-2 FT), six rebounds and two assists across 23 minutes during Friday's 139-120 loss to the Nets.
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Pops for 19 points Saturday
FSan Antonio Spurs
March 1, 2020
Gay amassed 19 points (7-12 FG, 4-6 3Pt, 1-2 FT), six rebounds, four assists, two blocks and one steal in 30 minutes during Saturday's 114-113 victory over the Magic.
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