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Buy, Sell, or Hold: LaMarcus Aldridge and Jamal Murray


Who's hot and who's not? Who is the guy who is vastly overperforming expectations? Who is slumping hard and should bounce back any day now? And what to do with them?

LaMarcus Aldridge is playing his heart out lately and it is helping his Spurs creep into a playoff spot at the moment. But will he keep it up? And will it be enough for them to keep their record-tying 22-season playoff streak alive?

Jamal Murray, on the other hand, is in a shooting funk, and although his Nuggets are sitting pretty in the #2 spot in the West, it's not really thanks to him. Is it likely that he will snap out of it and what kind of a player should you offer his owner to get him to sell?

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These two guys will be our focus in our Sell High and Buy Low candidates for Week 11 of the NBA season, right here at RotoBaller.

 

Buy Low, Sell High Advice for Week 11

Are You for Real, LaMarcus Aldridge?

How good has been Aldrige lately? Let's take a sample size of the last month in which he played 10 games. He had at least one block in each of these games. He double-doubled in six of those games. He is shooting over 50% from the field and over 80% from the free-throw line during this stretch.

For a full picture, his averages from this timeframe are 20.5 PTS with 1.3 3PM on 50.6 FG% and 83.9 FT%, 9.6 REB, 2.4 AST, 0.6 STL, 2.2 BLK, and 1.0 TO in 33 minutes per outing. This is production has him just outside the top-5. He contributes in every category, is very efficient and quite useful both in head-2-head and rotisserie formats as well as categories and points leagues.

Given that Aldridge has been a force in the NBA for over a decade now this wouldn't be too surprising if he weren't 34 and playing for the Spurs. Coach Gregg Popovich is notorious for resting his older players but LMA has only missed two games out of 32 so far this season.

Also, he is 34! It's not really realistic of us to expect him to get close to 10 boards and over two blocks every night. He could stick around to near 9 boards and 1.5 blocks at best, with the rest of his stats taking a slight fall. Not too much, but just enough to get him back down to objective top-35 value.

But most of all, LaMarcus is a possible trade target. With only another year left on his contract, the Spurs are risking losing him in the summer of 2021 for nothing if they don't trade him before then. And with San Antonio quite far away from being a title contender, it wouldn't make much sense for Aldrige to re-sign.

If LMA is moved before the February trade deadline, it is most likely that he will be sought after by a contender. It is difficult to imagine him having the same usage and the same role on any contending team so a drop in production and therefore fantasy value would be imminent. Probably even outside the top-50.

For all these reasons, Aldrige is definitely a Sell high candidate if you own him. Swapping him for someone you can rely on being a top-30 guy for the rest of the season would make sense. Players like Ben SimmonsJayson Tatum or Nikola Vucevic would all be worth the LMA price tag in my opinion if they fit my team.

Baller Move: Sell high

 

Time to Panic on Jamal Murray?

With averages of just 13.7 points with 1.5 threes on 38.5% from the field and no misses (total of 13 attempts) from the line, 3.2 boards, 5.5 dimes, 1.2 steals, 0.2 blocked shots, and 2.3 turnovers in 32 minutes a night over his previous six games, Murray is sitting outside the top-100 in Yahoo leagues.

This isn't the Jamal Murray his owners were hoping for during their drafts. He was the 54th pick on average but has underperformed his ADP by some 15 spots so far this season. And with so much of his value tied up in his points and three-pointers made, this shooting slump he's in is really hurting his owners. And it just may be enough for them to consider selling him for an in-form guy.

Now Murray has never been a high percentage field goal guy, so we shouldn't expect a miracle coming his way. But he is a 43.3 FG% shooter during his career, and with almost 40% of his shots being from beyond the arc, it doesn't sound that bad.

Jamal is expected to be a leader of this Nuggets team along with Nikola Jokic, so the minutes and shots should be there all the time, and even though it is a gamble, if he starts to hit them at a 45 or even 50% clip, his value could skyrocket.

If you're willing to roll the dice on Jamal, a guy between the top-75 and top-100 should be the price you pay. This would qualify players like Dejounte MurrayDerrick Favors or Eric Bledsoe as guys you could hope to trade for him.

Baller Move: Hold or buy low

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