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Fantasy Basketball Buy, Sell, or Hold: Jonas Valanciunas and Deandre Ayton

Trading in fantasy basketball can help you improve your team in the short, as well as in the long term. But, even more than that, it's just plain fun. Negotiating with your mate, going back and forth with offers, and hopefully, reaching a mutually beneficial agreement in the end.

It's not always easy to find the right deal that both parties could agree upon, so using the current form to your advantage could be helpful for you to get a deal done, and perhaps even get the most out of it.

Here are our Sell High and Buy Low candidates for Week 8 of the NBA season, right here at RotoBaller.

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Are You for Real, Jonas Valanciunas?

I would like to clear the air first - I love Jonas! He is an old-school center that has adapted to new trends in a great way! He is a pretty good free-throw shooter for a big and has three-point range too (although he isn't prolific). Furthermore, this season he has ramped up his steal numbers as well.

Jonas has missed a couple of games due to ever so popular health and safety protocols but has returned since and in his three games back he is averaging 20.7 PTS with 0.7 3PM on 63.9 FG% and 93.3 FT%, 14.0 REB, 2.7 AST, 1.0 STL, 0.7 BLK AND 2.7 TO in 29 minutes per game which has him ranked at #4 in Yahoo rankings. This is something quite unsustainable, I believe we all can agree.

Now, I had J-Val marked in my mind as an injury risk before going into deeper analysis and what I concluded was quite eye-opening for me. Valanciunas has missed more than five games in a single season just once since the season 2016-17, and three times overall in his 9 full seasons (once in his rookie campaign - I don't know if I should take that into account at all). I guess having him on my roster in his injury-plagued 2018-19 season has left its marks. So, using this argument, you can build Jonas up to appear quite durable in trade talks.

Furthermore, Memphis has had quite a few games postponed that will most likely have to be played at a later date, which makes their players even more attractive in trade talks. His apparent durability, his insane for and the fact that Memphis has six games in hand compared to let's say the Lakers or the Clippers, are all good points you can make in an attempt to swap Jonas for a stud.

Valanciunas should be at around top 50 anyways, so with his current form and the fact that he should have some additional games later on in the season (possibly during fantasy playoffs), I would aim for a top 30 player in a straight swap. If you put forth some good arguments, you could potentially target players like our buy low target Deandre Ayton, Jonas' struggling teammate Ja Morant or even Ben Simmons if he fits your team build. If no one bites, keeping the Lithuanian beast is not a bad thing at all either.

Baller Move: Sell high


Time to Panic on Deandre Ayton?

Then #1 pick in one of the most controversial drafts ever (where Luka Doncic went 3rd overall!?) has really dropped of recently with averages of just 13.9 points with 0.1 threes on 55.0% from the field and 66.7% from the charity stripe, 13.1 boards, 1.9 dimes, 0.1 steals, 1.0 blocks and 2.3 turnovers in over 34 minutes per outing over the last two weeks. This has Ayton all the way down at #54 on Yahoo.

He is down in every statistic except for rebounds when compared to his averages over the course of the previous season, so it is quite reasonable to expect him to bounce back at some point. Especially since it was projected, and still seems quite plausible, that the addition of Chris Paul will benefit Ayton as well.

Now if Ayton's fantasy GM is not a believer, or is just looking to cut his losses, if you can get him for anyone outside the top 40, I would definitely count that in the WIN column. Fred Vanvleet, Tobias Harris and Zach LaVine are all in better form at the moment but should all do worse in the remainder of the season, so if Ayton fits your team build better than anyone of these guys who are on your roster, it might not be hurtful to try and make a trade happen.

Baller Move: Hold or buy low.

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