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Week 12: Dynasty Risers And Fallers For Fantasy Basketball

Jalen Johnson - NBA DFS Lineup Picks, Daily Fantasy Basketball Rankings

RotoBallers, fantasy basketball managers, and dynasty enthusiasts welcome back! It's about that time when we venture back into the dynasty value woods and try to find which players are gaining or losing value. NBA All-Star voting is in full swing, so this is when everyone is up in arms about the fact that the actual best players from each conference aren't being voted as starters.

The good thing about players who aren't voted as a starter is that does not correlate with how good they are in real life or dynasty leagues. However, you could probably use that as a negotiation tactic if other managers take the All-Star game way too seriously and like to reminisce on the days when Kobe Bryant and Allen Iverson battled in the exhibitions. I'm not telling you to trick people into trades, just let them believe what they think about fantasy value, even if it's incorrect!

An older player hitting a week or two-week-long hot streak doesn't exactly change their value when it comes to dynasty. The average Joe getting a bunch of All-Star votes because the internet wants them to play as a joke doesn't change much either. If a rookie goes on a tear for a month or a player in their prime moves teams to an even better situation, well that could boost their value moving forward for the foreseeable future. So, let's get into which players are gaining or losing value this week!

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Risers For Dynasty Fantasy Basketball Leagues

Jalen Johnson (SF/PF, ATL)

If any of you are a consistent reader of this series, you're probably questioning whether or not Jalen Johnson has already been on this list. The answer is yes. Johnson appeared on the riser list before he missed some time for injury and he's back on the list as he rises to even new heights!

He's now up to a third-round value in terms of per-game numbers compared to the league average. To be more specific, he's sitting at 31st, according to Basketball Monsters nine-category rankings. Last season, Johnson failed to reach the top 275, and the season before he wasn't even inside the top 500. He has increased his averages by 9.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 0.6 steals, and 0.8 made threes per game.

The only other player who should be considered for Most Improved Player of the Year is Tyrese Maxey, which should tell you all you need to know about Jalen Johnson's improvement.

Vince Williams Jr. (SF, MEM)

We have entered the "opportunity due to injury" portion of the day. Ja Morant (shoulder) is out for the rest of the season, Marcus Smart (finger) is out again for multiple weeks, and the Grizzlies frontcourt has been thin this entire year. Vince Williams Jr. is getting a huge opportunity and he's already signed a brand new three-year contract worth $7.9 million.

Williams was playing out the second year of a two-way contract and due to the fact that he's already played 27 games and the Grizzlies need all the help they can get, he found himself with a new deal and some big numbers. Over the last week, the 23-year-old has played well enough to end up in the top 35 in nine-category leagues. An average stat line of 12.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.5 steals, 1.0 blocks, and 2.5 made threes per game has made Williams a popular waiver wire addition.

In the smaller dynasty leagues, Williams is a high-quality stash right now and he's likely just hanging out on waivers. In the deeper leagues, if he's not already taken, he can deliver some great value right off the bat.

Cam Whitmore (SF, HOU)

Slowly, but surely, Cam Whitmore is receiving more minutes and opportunities with this upstart Houston Rockets roster. Amen Thompson has returned from a lengthy ankle injury, but Dillon Brooks (oblique) and Tari Eason (leg) have both been out for several games. Whitmore is one of the biggest beneficiaries in this case.

His increase in playing time hasn't directly translated to a top-100 output just yet, but we're talking dynasty here, so the most important thing is that he continues to improve throughout his rookie season. Over the last two weeks, he's received north of 17 minutes a night and has turned it into 11.7 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.3 steals, 1.2 turnovers, and 1.5 made threes per game. Turnovers and assists are going to be the downside of his game right now since he's more of a high-energy gunner, but that always has time to change.

All I'll say is, I'm glad I drafted him in a 30-team dynasty league because he's going to be very good in due time!

Fallers For Dynasty Fantasy Basketball Leagues

Mark Williams (C, CHA)

Stats and opportunities are not the reason that Mark Williams' value is falling right now. Actually, it's quite the opposite, but also not under his own control. He only played 43 games in his rookie season and looked like he was ready for a breakout year until back issues started. Knee and foot injuries tend to derail bigs in the NBA, but back problems can derail anyone's career let alone their season. Bradley Beal and Ben Simmons are two recent names that have missed a chunk of time with back problems.

Williams didn't even have a timetable for his return until it was finally reported that he was going to miss "at least one more week." The last game he played was on December 8 and wasn't able to even finish that contest. When will the back problems end? Will the back problems be fully resolved or will it limit his minutes when he returns? Both are plausible questions from fantasy managers and no one has the answers.

Hopefully, he returns to full strength and becomes the centerpiece of a Charlotte Hornets defense that is in need of a lot of talent to become competitive.

Ja Morant (PG, MEM)

Well, here we are again, talking about Ja Morant. Unfortunately, the season started with a 25-game suspension and it has now ended with an unfortunate torn labrum in his shoulder. Morant's lightning-quick and electrifying style of play has only been limited by injury issues ever since he was drafted in 2019.

The "injury-prone" tag is officially getting placed on the young star whether anyone likes it or not. In his first five seasons, the amount of games played is as follows: 68, 63, 57, 61, 9. Yes, as I mentioned before, the first 25 games were due to suspension, but that doesn't excuse all 152 games that he's missed out of a possible 410.

When another fantasy manager thinks about trading for Morant, they're now going to look at it as a bigger risk. Usually, the bigger the injury risk, the less value you get in return. In this case, I hope I'm wrong in the long run.

Harrison Barnes (SF/PF, SAC)

I don't think I need to explain to all of the dynasty managers out there why Harrison Barnes makes the fallers section of this list. While he may not be an old man in reality, he is an old man in NBA terms. Gone are the days of his prime when he averaged 19 points, six rebounds, and two assists per game. He's approaching 32 years old and has hit his lowest nine-category rank since the 2013-14 season.

Made threes and low turnovers are his two main calling cards in the fantasy realm, which you can find in many places. This basketball world is full of 3-and-D players that don't turn the ball over too much. Barnes is suited to be the end of your rotation in a very deep dynasty league where every single point, rebound, and field goal percentage matters. Outside of that, Barnes will likely sit on the waiver wire without anyone throwing any sort of waiver or FAAB on him.

It truly is the end of an era for all of the former Golden State Warriors who played on the original championship team.



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