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Curse of Strahd: A Call of Cthulhu Rewrite: The Village of Barovia

So the poor Wallchian investigators have began their journey down the Old Svalich Road, which has led them to the tragic village of Barovia, Castle Ravenloft looming overhead in the distance. Barovia's great, but it needs a little bit of fleshing out for it to work in the context of a CoC campaign. If you make a lacklustre beginning, the investigation will flounder and the campaign could honestly collapse right away, therefore it's important to get the opening questions of the campaign out quickly and clearly. So let's get started.
STAT CHANGES
Intro Post
The Cthulhu Way
Backstory
The Investigators
The New Valley
Campaign Structure
Strahd's New Stats
Arc 1/2 Travel Encounters
Tser Pool
Old Bonegrinder
Vallaki NPCs
Vallaki First Impressions
Vallaki Arabelle

The Lay of the Land

The Blood of the Vine Tavern

The Burgomaster's House

Davian, my friend
You know of the ruins of Berez, yes? I must confess that in my youth, I uncovered secrets of how the village came to such devastation. Secrets I fully intended to take to my grave. But no! I fear that my own daughter had some role to play in its destruction. And yet I hear you ask "How can this be, when Ireena was born centuries after the end of Berez?" To this, I do not know, but I fear that my daughter is cursed. Cursed to some horrid fate. Or perhaps she is the curse herself? Oh, the fear! How it overwhelms me! And now the Devil himself comes for my daughter, for reasons I am oblivious to! I understand that Father Lucian of St Andral's Church in Vallaki has some knowledge of dark forces. Perhaps, the next time you send wine the way of our village, you could take us with you so that we may visit Vallaki with good company?
Your friend, Kolyan Indirovich

The Church

Other Changes

You'll see over the course of the rewrite that I really don't like outright removing features of the campaign. It's a lazy way of adapting the campaign to a different system for stuff that doesn't work. I will have to sometimes significantly alter certain things to fit the campaign flow better. And sadly, there will have to be a few times where stuff just has to go. But for now, I've managed to keep the important parts of Barovia Village mostly intact.

Conclusion

And there we go, the village of Barovia, Cthulhufied! It's good to finally get to real areas of the campaign. Next time, I'll be tackling Tser Pool, the Fortunes of Ravenloft, and one of my favourite characters in the rewrite Madame Eva/Nyarlathotep. See ya next time!
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[OC] How many All-Time Top 25 Players are Currently in the League? (longpost)

There was some conversations going around NBA twitter, about two months ago now, about the liklihood of current stars passing the current perceived legends (one I remember specifically was, what's more likely, Harden>Kobe, Steph>Magic, or Durant>Bird). That conversation piqued my interest a ton, I don't think we do a great job of contextualizing non-Lebron stars and so I thought I'd try my hand at just that. To make it something I could tangibly work towards, I narrowed down the idea to "How Many Top 25 Players are in the League", and producing at a high level.
 
To do that, needed to establish something resembling a consensus All-Time ranking, and I used Simmons Pyramid and top 50 lists from CBS and SI. The point of doing that instead of making my own list from scratch was that the focus of this analysis was contextualizing current players and I was hoping it would save time and prevent people from yelling at me. Ultimately, I basically used those as a framework to get a consensus group of 25 players, and then I put them in tiers (GOATs, Generational Talents, and Greats) from there based on the consulted works and criteria I thought made some sense. All the stats are pulled from Basketball Reference, so shout out to them. There's also pre-80s tiers from Greats and GOATs, just because the stats from that era are so weird and it would make any threshold basically pointless. The descriptions/reqs for each tier aren't supposed to be end all be alls, just a general idea, though I'm sure Kobe being in Tier 3 instead of Tier 2 will bother some people (the cutoff line basically became three titles as The Guy vs two, because I feel like the two title guys are closer to Malone than they are to Duncan). Anyway, another housekeeping note, I listed Wade and Dirk among the established All-Time Top 25 because they're role players at this point, and I wanted to focus on guys still playing at a star level.After the list of 'consensus' top 25 are four sections looking at current players, all focused on different career points and viability. And that's pretty much it, this is long as hell, but covered a lot of ground.
Last note on the formatting, the career profiles are sequenced like:

Player Name

with notations for any top ten ranking within major categories. There are a couple exceptions, Dirk and Havlicek have a line for peak season as well as an extra for playoff peaks just below it, because they had unreal playoff runs that didn't conicide with their regular season peaks that I felt were relevant; and Harden's peak season is a consecutive two years, because I thought it was impressive mostly.
 
The projections for current players are based on 538s CARMELO model, it projects BPM and RPM (translated into wins), so players on good teams are rewarded and the more games you play in, assuming you're a plus player, the more you're rewarded. The stat doesn't trace production though, it's a plus/minus metric, I'm using it as a baseline for like, for how long and how good is each guy expected to be. Link here to CARMELO
Oh also, I actually ended up with 26, not 25 All-Timers, but I thought that would make the title even more nonsensical than it is and that's why I'm telling you here. On with it forreal now >
 
 
TL ; DR
 
Current Consensus All-Time Rankings
Tier 1: Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain
Tier 2: Shaquille O’ Neal, Tim Duncan, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson
Tier 3: Kobe Bryant, Hakeem Olajuwon, Karl Malone, Steve Nash, Dirk Nowitzki, Dwayne Wade, John Stockton, Kevin Garnett, David Robinson, Charles Barkley, Scottie Pippen, Moses Malone, Julius Erving, John Havlicek, Oscar Robertson, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Bob Pettit
 
Current Stars With All-Time Careers
Part 1, Already In: Lebron James, Chris Paul, Kevin Durant
Part 2, All-Time Peak but Short on GP: Stephen Curry, James Harden
3 and 4 aren't defintive , but are notable
Part 3, Toss Up: Anthony Davis, Russell Westbrook
Part 4, Too Soon to Tell: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Devin Booker, Karl Anthony-Towns, Ben Simmons
From my research I'd say there's at least 5 of the 25 best players ever in the league now, playing at a high level, and possibly as many as 11. Safe bet seems like 8 seems, it's hard to imagine at least one of BookeRuss/KAT/Simmons as well as Davis and Giannis busting hard enough to knock them off the path they've set for themselves and once the Lebron era finishes up the standard will be raised a good amount. This lil paragraph is gonna be posted at the end if you stick around till then.
 
 
And for the people who like to read lots of stats and some words, enjoy ~
 
 
 
 
Pre-80s Tier 1 - GOATs 

Bill Russell

Wilt Chamberlain

 
 
 

Tier 1 - GOATs 1000+ GP, 10x+ All-NBA, 6x+ combined MVP and FMVP, top 5 all-time points and win shares 

Michael Jordan

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

 
 
 
Tier 2: Generational Talents 900x+ GP, 4x combined FMVP and MVP, 10x All-NBA 

Tim Duncan

Magic Johnson

Larry Bird

Shaquille O’Neal

 
 
 

Pre-80s Tier 3:Greats 

Oscar Robertson

Jerry West

John Havlicek

Elgin Baylor

Bob Pettit

 
 
 

Tier 3: Greats Any of 1x MVP/double digit All-NBA/top ten in any major category gets at least a look here. Hakeem and Kobe could be up a tier, I just think they're closer to Malone than they are to Duncan, for example. 

Kobe Bryant

Karl Malone

Hakeem Olajuwon

Moses Malone

John Stockton

Charles Barkley

Dirk Nowitzki - Active

Scottie Pippen

Kevin Garnett

Julius Erving - no ABA

Dwyane Wade - Active

Steve Nash

David Robinson

 
 

Recap 
Tier 1: Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain
Tier 2: Shaquille O’ Neal, Tim Duncan, Larry Bird, Magic Johnson
Tier 3: Kobe Bryant, Hakeem Olajuwon, Karl Malone, Steve Nash, Dirk Nowitzki, Dwyane Wade, John Stockton, Kevin Garnett, Charles Barkley, Scottie Pippen, Moses Malone, Julius Erving, John Havlicek, Oscar Robertson, Jerry West, Elgin Baylor, Bob Pettit, David Robinson
 
 
Part 1: Already In Self explantory, players who have already put in strong enough careers to be listed among the top 25 ever while still in their relative prime. 

Lebron James

Best Career Comps: Michael Jordan, Karl Malone, Shaq (?)
Current Ranking: Borderline Tier 1/2
Projected Career:
There’s been a ton of ink already spilled on Lebron’s GOAT candidacy and all-time significance, so won’t spend much time here. Two more seasons at roughly his current production and that’s a consensus top 3 all time career, where he’d only be 36 with a chance to get into truly unprecedented levels of sustained dominance. Read Zach Kram’s piece if you want analysis here, it’s basically what I’m doing but more well defined and uniform in every way. Here’s roughly the range of numbers given there (Win Shares estimated):
40k Points All-Time Leader 11k Assists 3rd All-Time 11k Rebounds 260 Win Shares 2nd All-Time
 
Projected Ranking: Tier 1
 
 
 

Kevin Durant

Best Career Comps: Dwanye Wade, Bob Pettit, Larry Bird
Current Ranking: Low Tier 3
Projected Career:
There have been 29 individual seasons of 30/5/5 averages, move that to 30/7/5.5 and it’s cut to 11 seasons, include a 60%TS qualifier to the search and you’ll find two seasons, Michael Jordan’s ‘88-’89 season and Kevin Durant’s ‘13-’14 season, increase the parameters to Durant’s actual averages of 32.0ppg/7.4rpg/5.5apg/1.3spg on 50/39/87 splits or 63%TS/56%eFG and he stands alone. That is a Tier 1 level peak, one of the 20 or so best seasons ever (maybe that’ll be my next project), but his candidacy is going to have some holes. This year has really strengthened the idea that even if Durant is better that Curry is more important to the Warriors, Durant got that FMVP (two now) and was fantastic in that (those) series, but to date only one (two) title (s) total and only one Finals appearance as “the guy”. I think that matters to an extent, looking at positional rankings he’s chasing Bird, who got three titles and two FMVP, but was no question the guy on all three of those teams. Durant’s career is going to be longer, so he’ll pass Bird statistically at some point within the next three years probably, with the metrics are pretty neck and neck. Once he gets to 900-1100 GP, he’ll be near or at the top of Tier 3 and once he closes in on 1200 he’ll be fringe Tier 2, with Hakeem or Kobe, the real question is how many games he has left. Multiple serious injuries to this point in his career, and it’s easy to forget he’s a legit 7 footer who’s going to be 30 next season, and the durability concerns that generally come with that. CARMELO was pretty spot on with his value this year, overestimated his decline just a touch, and he’s expected to be in the same range next year. After that, his value is projected in the above average wing range, similar to Jaylen Brown, KCP, and Kyle Korver this year, for the following three years; finally, two seasons in the Jeff Green/Buddy Hield range. Assuming he sticks at the 65-70 game range, that could look something like: 70 games at 25.0/6.5/5.0/1.0/1.0, 200 games at 21.5/4.0/5.5/1.0/1.0, and 130 games at 18.5/4.0/4.5/1.0/1.0, and Win Shares wise those sections should respectively net about 10, 21, and 9. Adding that onto his current career, his final profile would be:
 
1171 GP: 29.5k Point 8th All-Time ⋄ 7.3k Rebounds ⋄ 5k Assists ⋄ 1.3k Blocks ⋄ 1.3k Steals ⋄ 170 Win Shares ⋄
 
If his defense actually picks up to peak OKC levels, the Warriors win 3-4 titles in a row, or he has one or two more 30 point seasons, his profile will end up a lot stronger than this, but based on this year and his projections I think it’s as likely his career gets short by injuries or he doesn’t even get 400 more games. There’s a lot of variance with Durant, his metrics have always been kinda weird and the deeper this Warriors run goes you’d think his regular season games will drop, ultimately this seems reasonable.
 
Projected Ranking: Upper Tier 3 - Borderline Tier 2/3
 
 
 

Chris Paul

Best Career Comps: Magic Johnson, Steve Nash, Hakeem Olajuwon
Current Ranking: Lower Tier 3
Projected Career:
Currently 538’s projections have CP logging two more seasons of similar quality to this year’s effort, where he put up 18.6/7.9/5.4/1.7 in 58 games, then two seasons at roughly Rubio production, before transitioning into a full time role player. Some notable comps are late career Chauncey and Stockton, betting on at least 4 more quality 60 game campaigns appears to be safe though. The first two let’s say at 17/7/4/1.5 and the back two at 13/7/3/1, which adds 240 GP, 3.6k Points, 1.7k Assists, .8k Rebounds, and .3k Steals. For the first two seasons add on 18 Win Shares and for the back two add 8 Win Shares (CP got 10 this year, Rubio had 5 for reference).That puts a safe estimate for Paul’s final tally at:
 
1132 GP: 20.3k Points ⋄ 10.4k Assists 3rd All-Time ⋄ 4.8k Rebounds ⋄ 2.3k Steals 5th All-Time ⋄ 190.8 Win Shares10th All-Time
 
Without getting into metrics and efficiency, and especially in a conversation generally very saturated with playoff accomplishments, it’s a bit complicated to establish Paul’s spot. Luckily I am using Win Shares and that stat displays a lot of what I’m talking about with CP3, specifically let’s compare him first to Wade, who holds an 100 game and 5000 point lead on Paul. Which hypothetically should give Wade a leg up in this metric, more game time and more pure production, but in actuality, Wade trails CP in this area by a margin of >50< Win Shares, or the equivalent of five ‘18 Chris Paul seasons (who lead the league in Win Shares/48), or two ‘72 Kareem seasons (the single season Win Share record); Pippen has 300 more games, more points, played for winninger teams, and is considered a better defender, but Paul has 25 more Win Shares (or two 2001 Allen Iverson seasons); Kobe has 300 more games and has doubled CP’s point total, yet only holds a 8 Win Shares advantage (that’s less than Paul had this year in a 58 game campaign); Nash has a 300 game edge, more Assists, and more Points, and is generally considered a better floor general, but even so trails CP by a staggering 40 Win Shares. Building on the abursdity of CP's Win Share collection, it’s not like Paul’s numbers are anything to look down on. There’s only 15 seasons on record with his career averages, of which he accounts for five, but it also doesn’t really seem acknowledged that he’s basically averaged 20/10 for a decade now. Honestly I kinda think it’s because he only averaged at least 20 for two of those seasons, and players aren’t really mentally benchmarked as elite scorers if they’re at 19.0ppg instead 21.5ppg. Regardless, Paul’s definitely up there already, honestly I’d have him tied with Wade in the 20s, and depending on his longevity going forward, he should pass Stockton. He won’t have the same longevity as Stockton, but the comparison between their peak seasons and longevity of peak is a joke, ultimately the 2nd PG All Time behind Magic is CP's for the taking. Game total and playoff success are working against him, and the clocks ticking, but I think he ends up passing Stockton and somewhere in the top 20. A consecutive decade with 19/10/4/2 on 48/38/88 as the premier defender at his position is just ludacris, his final act should add some much needed playoff success and resume padding.
 
Projected Ranking: High Tier 3
 
 
 
Part 2: All-Time Peak, Short on GP Title explains. 

James Harden

Comparable Peaks: Larry Bird, Shaquille O' Neil + Steve Nash, Oscar Robertson
Projected Career:
First things first, Harden’s individual peak season, either last year or this year depending on playoff performance, is Tier 2 level. 30 ppg and 10 apg on his efficiency is plain absurd, the only better perimeter scorer seasons are Jordan and Lebron. The main two things working against him at the moment is it taking him 3 years to reach high volume numbers and lack of playoff accolades, so even though his peak is already better than Kobe's, it would take a great deal to pass him everything else considered. Next thing to note is a bit of a quirk in Harden’s CARMELO projections, his top ten closest comps include prime Grant Hill, Deron Williams, and Magic Johnson, as well as ‘91 Jordan and ‘10 Wade. Grant Hill had a steep drop off due to injuries, Magic had a medical situation that cut his prime short, Williams just fell off, Jordan took two years off for baseball, and Wade was at the tail end of his prime. It seems like those specific comps curbed his projections, because considering his durability and non-athletic dependent skillset I wouldn’t expect that much of a drop in production for another 3ish years when he hits 31-32. With those caveats out of the way, and a note that he overperformed his projection this year, CARMELO gives him three more years at around a Paul George/Derozan/Beal level and the three after that in Teague range. Next three years assume he stays in the 75 GP a year range, and I’m going with a line of 26.5/7.5/4.5 which... is low looking at his past 3 years and a tad generous looking at the CARMELO projections, but uhh.. can’t please everyone. That adds 6k Points, 1.7k Assists, and 1k Rebounds to his total, with roughly 35 Win Shares. That takes him through his 31 year old season, and for the following three years I’m gonna be a bit more generous in relation to the CARMELO numbers, for years 32-34 I think 65 GP with 23.5/9/4 is well within reason. This gives him another 4.6k Points, 1.8k Assists, and .8k Rebounds, plus 25 Win Shares going into year 15, where he’d be at 1107 career games. He’ll probably play longer than that but projecting that far gets dicey so his final talley here is:
 
1107 GP: 26.4k Points ⋄ 7.6k Assists ⋄ 5.3k Rebounds ⋄ 156.7 Win Shares ⋄
 
That’s a stronger profile straight up than Wade, Erving, Pippen, and Nash, and very much comparable to Barkley. 3 MVP level seasons with around 8x All-NBA and 1000GP is something only a handful of perimeter players have accomplished.
 
Projected Ranking: Tier 3
 
 
 

Stephen Curry

Comparable Peaks: Dwanye Wade, Steve Nash, Jerry West, Dirk Nowitizki
Projected Career: If Curry retired tomorrow he would go down as the greatest shooter to ever play the game and he already holds one of the best offensive seasons ever, putting up 30 a game on a ridiculous 67%TS/63%eFG (the only player with a season of that volume and efficiency) with an equally absurd 125 OffRating in 2700 minutes. Curry’s peak puts him in the Tier 1-2 conversation and in the top 5 point guard conversation, assuming he can start stacking games to bolster his resume. The main blemishes here are a good, but not great, first MVP season(24/8/4/2, 67 wins, title), no FMVP(he deserved Iguodala's), and not really breaking out till he was 24-25. He’s smack in the middle of his prime right now though, he could hypothetically double his game count depending on how he ages. There’s also at the very least, one more year of this Warriors run, but probably longer and while the Rockets are a very real threat, that team isn’t built for the long term. Point being, Curry could feasibly end up with 4-5+ titles, alongside 2 MVPs, a ton of wins, greatest shooter ever, and that’s looking like a resume that could start rivaling Magic. Bringing in the CARMELO, he’s projected to be pretty steady for the next six years; he underperformed this year because he only played 51 games, but is expected to stay at the same effectiveness next year, before marginal a drop, three years at that level, and another two after another small drop. It’s a close enough overall range I’m just going to combine all six of those seasons, 65 games a piece (he’s, somewhat surprisingly, only played less than 74 twice but playing full seasons as the Warriors age seems unlikely +leveraging in case of injuries) at 24.0/6.5/4.5/1.5. That point total may seem low, but that includes his age 34-35 seasons where you’d assume a dip in production of some kind; in terms of increasing Curry’s career stats, from this scenario he adds; 390 GP: 9.4k Points ⋄ 2.5k Assists ⋄ 1.8k Rebounds ⋄ .6k Steals and 55 Win Shares or so. Given that, we’re looking at a final tally of:
 
1,015 GP: 23.4k Points ⋄ 6.5k Assists ⋄ 4.6k Rebounds ⋄ 1.6k Steals ⋄ 143.3 Win Shares ⋄
 
A total like that with a peak as strong as his gets into Tier 2 range with enough wins and playoff success. I think his profile is a touch stronger than Durant given the two MVPs, 73 win season, and Championship prior to Durant joining. I’m not going to project titles or playoff success, but with his head start accolade wise and their success from here on out being tied, I give him a little bit stronger chance to end up Tier 2, especially if he ever nabs at least one FMVP.
 
Projected Ranking: Borderline Tier 2/3
 
 
 
Part 3: Toss Up A bit more vague, but I explain the reasoning on why they're not in the tier up in their projections. 

Russell Westbrook

Projected Career: Well, this is definitely an interesting one, back-to-back triple double seasons, an MVP, a few deep playoff runs with Durant, but about to hit 30 with the very legitimate possibility he doesn’t sniff the Finals again. Despite a few notable scoring seasons, he only actually has 3 seasons above 25 ppg and his career average is somehow only 23 ppg despite a career usage of 32.7%. And yet, an MVP and 1000GP is close to automatic entry to this very definitive, scientific ranking; ultimately failing to pick up a title with Durant is probably going to hurt his resume a good bit when he’s lacking in so many other areas. Taking a step back from narrative and context, let’s see how his stats could measure out; CARMELO gives him two more elite seasons and then four really good seasons and Russ generally does play full seasons, so that could work in his favor. 150 games at 27.0ppg/8.5rpg/8.5apg/1.5spg with 18 Win Shares, and the four season period after that a very slight less game load where he’ll be ages 32-35, so 280 games at 24.0ppg/8.5apg/6.0rpg/1.5spg and 28 Win Shares. His new total given this is:
 
1,178 GP: 27.8k Points 9th All-Time ⋄ 8k Rebounds ⋄ 9.7k Assists 7th All-Time ⋄ 1.9k Steals ⋄ 136.1Win Shares ⋄
 
Everything said prior and acknowledging the holes in his game and legacy, that’s a damn impressive career profile. Top ten in scoring and assists, and he has a shot at steals too, basically the pure counting stats would have him in, but no 60 win or title seasons as The Guy is sorta damaging. “Best Player on a Bunch of Sub-50 Win Teams, Only 1 Finals Appearance with Prime Durant” isn’t a generous reading per say, but also wouldn't be particularly untrue to point out. There’s definitely a threshold where his numbers are so ridiculous he gets in though, and the MVP is a very strong accolade, so wait and see?
 
Projected Ranking: Fringe Tier 3
 
 
 

Anthony Davis

Projected Career:
Little fun fact about Anthony Davis, he is a full 25 years of age, and won’t turn 26 until -next- March. He led the league in PER at age 21 and should reasonably be in his prime for another seven years, even with some nagging injury concerns. Because of the day-to-day nature of following the league, it’s easy to forget perspective when looking at players, especially younger ones with prodigious talent. Anthony Davis averaged 28 and 12 with All-NBA defense when he was 23, and we’ve seen big men who didn’t fully blossom until they’re 28 or later. The sky is absolutely still the limit for AD basically, his metrics and the Pels defensive stats lag, suggesting that his team defense has room for improvement, he’s already added a 3pt shot this year, and now it looks like the Pels should be playoff competitors through Holiday and (possibly)Boogie’s primes with AD. CARMELO has Davis staying in the same range of production until he’s 30, but the model doesn’t go past there, I’m gonna give him to age 35 though with a guesstimate drop. This is projecting the farthest so even though the numbers will probably easily be in Tier 2 or 3, it’s not definitive. For these next six years, his production should be similar and should actually increase, but in the interest of being conservative here, 70 games a year at 27.0/11.5/2.0/2.0/1.0 with 11.5 Win Shares. Through his first six years he’s played 410 games, so it’s only a small uptick, but if he’s healthy from here on out that number should be higher too. At that point he’ll be 31 with five seasons till he’s 35, and a lot of great bigs still played full time into their late 30s, but given the modern NBA I’m going to drop him to 65 games a year for those years at 23.0/9.5/2.0/1.0 and 8.0 Win Shares. It is entirely reasonable to expect him to blow those numbers out of the water though, but even with that let’s take a look at his new profile, with an added; 745 GP: 18.8k Points ⋄ 7.9k Rebounds ⋄ 1.5k Assists ⋄ 1.5k Blocks ⋄ .7k Steals ⋄ 97.5 Win Shares. On top of his current numbers, that gives him a final line of:
 
1,155 GP: 28.4k Points9th All-Time ⋄ 12.1k Rebounds ⋄ 2.2k Assists ⋄ 2.5k Blocks10th All-Time ⋄ 1.2k Steals ⋄ 160.0 Win Shares ⋄
 
Moral of the story being that if AD stays healthy and stops improving he could sleepwalk into top ten All-Time in points and blocks. He’s at a point where he legitimately could have two more leaps though, on top of the possibility of him having a crazy long career, ala Dirk/Kareem; as well as the fact that during his real prime (generally ages 28-31): Lebron will be on the wrong side of 36 and the Warriors will be broken up or see some age regress as Curry and Durant head towards 35, so there could be some legit playoff success. He could end up anywhere in the top 25, and I would bet on him making it into there in some fashion.
 
Projected Ranking: Assuming health, floor is Tier 3. Outside that, who knows?
 
 
Part 4: Too Soon to Tell 
This is seriously way-way-way too soon, however, there’s a few players who have historically impressive early careers and should be given a cursory glance.
Giannis Anteokounmpo
Why He’s Notable: This should go without saying, but averaging 27/10/5/1.5/1.5 with 12 Win Shares at age 23 is extremely impressive. Giannis could’ve gotten a profile, AD only has one more actual season on him, but AD has been producing like a cornerstone for four years now and Giannis has only been at this level for just two seasons, including the most recent campaign. He’s the youngest player in the modern era to have at least 25/9/4 in a season, so this is another sky’s the limit player, however I would say Tier 1 is likely out of reach though. He’s made a major leap every year in the league and is about six years short of his prime at the moment, so even though his first two seasons could weigh down his eventual career profile, he could very easily catch up to a lot of Tier 3 guys who had injury periods or weren’t first options large parts of their career. Depending on who the Bucks bring in to coach, Giannis could have Tier 1 peak as soon as next year if the Bucks defensive numbers tick back up and their win total starts to match their talent.
Ben Simmons
Why He’s Notable: Simmons statline this year was a startlingly impressive for a rookie,
81 GP- 15.8ppg/8.1rpg/8.2apg/1.7spg/0.9bpg/9.2 Win Shares, 52-30 record.
Well actually, the rookie qualifier isn’t even necessary to illustrate the rarity of his season, there have only ever been 16 seasons in the history of the NBA with a 15-8-8 line and of those 16 seasons, Simmons is not only the youngest but ranks second in DRPM and third in Defensive Win Shares. Include his 1.5 Steals a game and it’s an even more exclusive club with just seven seasons putting up that line. He is already 21 and the free throwing shooting is a concern, but even if he barely improved and averaged 18.5ppg/8.5apg/8.5rpg/1.5spg/1.0bpg/10 Win Shares as a top ten defender for the next 13-14 years, that’s an all time career. The fact that he’s already putting up All Time numbers bodes very well for the 76ers, his start was legitimately strong enough that Tier 2 is within the realm of possibility if he makes any major leap within the next 3-4 years.
Devin Booker
Why He’s Notable: Booker is one of 9 players to ever average 24.5ppg by age 21, and that’s honestly the only noteworthy accomplishment he has, but points are pretty important so note this accomplishment I have. Issue projecting Booker is his playoff and team success in the next decade is an complete unknown and and he could reasonably hit 6,000 Points before he’s 23, a near lock (health presuming) for the All-Time Points leaderboard. which deserves a mention at the very least. For reference, Kobe’s first four seasons netted him 4,240 Points, Dirk’s left him with 5,383; and Malone and Jordan played their rookie seasons at age 22. That’s the 3rd, 6th, 2nd, and 4th All-Time scoring leaders respectively, and Booker is absolutely in range to have a huge head start on a point total if he’s a legit 25 a game scorer moving forward.
Karl Anthony Towns
Why He’s Notable: KAT also falls in the prior mentioned group of sub-22 year olds with a 25 ppg season, doing so last year before the acquisition of Jimmy Butler. He has a couple of legs up on Booker when looking at their production to date: KAT has so far not missed a game in his career, his rookie season was a great deal more impressive, and his comical efficiency. He’s already sitting at 5,307 Points through his first three seasons, averaging 21.6 ppg at age 22 with these shooting percentages: 54/39/84 & eFG/TS of 58/62. Basically off to a strong enough start at a young enough age that the sky's the limit scoring wise, as well as nearly 12 boards a game for his first three seasons and a solid collection of metrics. It seems like his stock has taken a hit the past year, especially last few weeks, but all he’s shown so far in his career is machine-like levels of durability and production. His full potential could be held back by playing next to multiple high usage perimeter guys, though on the flip side maybe that will be offset by increased early playoff success.
 
That's That 
From my research I'd say there's at least 5 of the 25 best players ever in the league now, playing at a high level, and possibly as many as 11. Safe bet seems like 8 seems, it's hard to imagine at least one of BookeRuss/KAT/Simmons as well as Davis and Giannis busting hard enough to knock them off the path they've set for themselves and once the Lebron era finishes up the standard will be raised a good amount.
submitted by Ghostnappa4 to nba [link] [comments]

[OC] Annual Reddit NBA Celebrity Game Preview - 2019

I am back for my yearly post on nba, breaking down the most anticipated game of the NBA Season, the Celebrity Game. This game will likely feature low quality basketball, large stretches of time where the camera focusing on things not happening on the court and a surprise celebrity entrant or two. The “Home” team will feature celebrities with ties to Carolina, the “Away” will feature the remaining celebrities. The term “celebrity” gets a looser definition every passing year with this game. There are even “celebrities” without Wikipedia pages playing in this year’s game! I was also surprised by how few of the celebrities in this game even played High School basketball. However, thank all your gods that Nick Cannon is finally not in this game. It took an agonizing ten years for the NBA/ESPN to realize that no one wants him here. This game will also feature a “Hometown Hero” on each team, a non-celebrity person who has committed heroic acts in the last year. This year’s game will feature the 4-point line for the entirety of the game (it was only used in the second half last year) – which the NBA will hopefully implement for the Finals later this year. Every player’s scouting report includes their 4-point shot making potential.
If you want to check my credentials, lasts year’s breakdown located here. I feel comfortable declaring myself to be the world’s foremost expert on the shit post of All-Star Weekend. I was not able to find data/footage of many of the celebrities that will be playing in this year’s game. I ended up having to judge player’s skills without as much evidence to base it on as I have had in previous years.

Check out a podcast where I discussed this year's Celebrity Game and the Celebrity Game in General.

Game Info: Friday, February 15, 2019, 7:00PM, ESPN, Bojangles Coliseum.
Betting Odds: Away Team -10
Over Under: 140

Break downs of the rosters for each team are below:

Home Team
This is the worst Celebrity Game roster since 2013. The team is old and lacks size, talent and athleticism. I have a hard time seeing how they can keep up with the Away Team. Steve Smith is the wild card player who could have a huge game to help pull off the upset. Head coach Dawn Staley will need to have the team buy into a defensive philosophy to keep the game close, but few people show up to celebrity games to play defense.
The roster has eight guards and four forwards. The starting line-up should be Williams, Wilson, Smith, Los and Smoove. I am not expecting huge efforts from Williams and Wilson, but Los and Smith should provide some athleticism and scoring for the first unit. Smoove is on the floor because he is tall. The bench provides nothing and there is no second unit, hopefully the starters are still in shape. This game may not end up being competitive.

Mike Colter (Actor)
Age: 42 Height: 6’3” Weight: 200 lbs
High school: Calhoun County
College: South Carolina
This will be Colter’s first appearance in the Celebrity Game. Colter has no known history of playing basketball and I cannot find a record of him appearing in any other celebrity games. His size and athleticism are both above average for this game, he should be able to grab some boards score at the rim.
4-Point Potential: Low

Chris Daughtry (Singer)
Age: 39 Height: 5’8” Weight: 180 lbs
High school: Fluvanna County
College: None
Daughtry will be making his debut in the Celebrity Game. I was unable to find any basketball history on Daughtry. His height and weight are both below average for this game. He also will not be one of the younger players in this game. I do not have high expectations.
4-Point Potential: Low

Terrence Jenkins (Actor)
Age: 36 Height: 5’9” Weight: 165
High school: Northern Nash
College: North Carolina A&T State
Terrence J returns for his fifth appearance in the Celebrity Game after taking a two-year hiatus. In his most recent outing in 2016, he posted a triple-single with 3 rebounds, 4 points and 1 steal in 14 minutes, putting up a solid -15 in plus/minus. Terrence J is not an accomplished baller and I have low hopes for his production in this game.
4-Point Potential: low

Famous Los (Influencer)
Age: 29 Height: 5’11” Weight: 165
High school: Riverside-Durham (Played Varsity)
College: Union (Played Varsity)
Los is yet another Celebrity Game rookie. Los has the pedigree of having averaged 37 points per game in High School and Playing in the NCAA Division II. He had a hard time getting on the court in college, but that background makes him one of the best players in this game. He is a quick, scoring guard, who struggles defensively, but there won’t be many players in this game who are difficult to guard. I can see him being a star for this team and an MVP candidate. Instagram stars who have a basketball background have a track record a success in this game. Los will see minutes since he is also going to be expected to provide some comedic relief during the game.
4-Point Potential: medium

Dr. Oz (TV Personality)
Age: 58 Height: Unknown Weight: Unknown
High school: Tower Hill
College: Harvard
Dr. Oz last appeared in the Celebrity Game in 2010. Dr. Oz does not ooze athleticism, but he does have a basketball court in his basement. His greatest achievements in hoops include feats such as beating Jill Martin in a game of HORSE on the Today Show. Dr. Oz is a decent jump shooter; however, he starts his shot from way too low and will need a ton of space to shoot. He is to old to start, but maybe he can help off the bench as a spot-up shooter.
4-Point Potential: Low

Rapsody (Rapper)
Age: 36 Height: 5’3” Weight: Unknown
High school: Unknown
College: North Carolina State
Rapsody has also never played in the Celebrity Game before. Her height is going to be a major issue in this game. She has played in the 2018 BET Celebrity Game, so she has the right kind of experience for this game. Rapsody is another player that won’t make an impact on the game.
4-Point Potential: low

Bo Rinehart (Musician)
Age: 37 Height: Unknown Weight: Unknown
High school: Unknown
College: Clemson
Bo Rinehart is making his initial entry into the Celebrity Game. There is almost no information about him available for me to determine what type of skills he has. I am going to guess that he is not good.
4-Point Potential: low

JB Smoove (ActoComedian)
Age: 53 Height: 6’4” Weight: 220 lbs
High school: Mount Vernon
College: Norfolk State
Smoove played in the 2012 Celebrity Game, and failed to make an impact. He has great height and weight for this game, but he is over 50, so I don’t think he will be on the floor a whole lot or have the required athleticism to keep up.
4-Point Potential: low

Steve Smith (former NFL Player)
Age: 39 Height: 5’9” Weight: 195lbs
High school: Los Angeles
College: Utah
Steve Smith is yet another Celebrity Game rookie. Somewhat surprisingly, Smith did not play basketball in High School. Smith is an elite athlete and has the potential to dominate this game. He should start and will most likely be the primary scoring option for this time. He does not help the Home Team’s height issue, but he does help with the team’s complete lack of athleticism.
4-Point Potential: medium

A’ja Wilson (WNBA Player)
Age: 22 Height: 6’4” Weight: 195 lbs
High school: Heathwood Hall Episcopal (2014 High School Player of the Year)
College: South Carolina (2018 National Player of the Year)
Wilson will be making her NBA Celebrity Game debut. Wilson has everything that the rest of this team doesn’t: height, skills, youth and athleticism. The only thing she can’t do is shoot from range. She averaged 20 points and 8 rebounds per game in her first season in the WNBA. Wilson will be the best player on this team, but the WNBA players have a long history of putting no effort into this game. Despite her talent, I expect her to be on the floor for about 15 minutes with no effort or production.
4-Point Potential: low

Jay Williams (NBA Analyst)
Age: 37 Height: 6’2” Weight: 195 lbs
High school: St. Joseph (All American)
College: Duke (National Player of the Year)
This will be Jay Williams first appearance in the Celebrity Game. If he had a functioning left knee, he would be the best player on this team be a wide margin. In his lone NBA season, Williams averaged 9.5 points and 4.7 rebounds in 26 minutes per game. He was not an efficient scorer, however. I am not expecting much effort from Williams but he could be a sleeper MVP candidate if he decides this game matters to him.
4-Point Potential: high

Jason Weinmann (Hometown Hero)
Age: 47 Height: Unknown Weight: Unknown
High school: Unknown
College: Unknown
The “Hometown Heroes” are a new addition to this year’s Celebrity Game. He drove a military transport vehicle into Hurricane Florence to rescue stranded people, so I won’t roast him here. I don’t expect the Hometown Heroes to play more than 5 minutes or impact the game.
4-Point Potential: low

Coach:
Dawn Staley (US Women’s National Team Coach)
Dawn Staley is slightly over qualified to be coaching in this cluster of a game. This team has barely any talent and may require a first-rate effort by the coach. Historically, the coaches don’t actually coach and mostly chat with the commentators on the sideline, but maybe Staley can buck that trend, since most of the other people who have coached in this game had never a coached a game before in their lives.

Player Skill Ranking:
  1. Jay Williams
  2. A’ja Wilson
  3. Steve Smith
  4. Famous Los
  5. JB Smoove
  6. Dr. Oz
  7. Terrence J.
  8. Mike Colter
  9. Rapsody
  10. Chris Daughtry
  11. Bo Rinehart
  12. Jason Weinman
Away Team
The Away Team is comprised of four veterans and eight rookies to the celebrity game. The roster has six guards and six forwards. This is a large line-up for a Celebrity game and will lead to dominating the glass. This team also has a good mix of skills on the team including ball handlers, spot shooters and post players. They should be able score for anywhere on the floor. The starting line-up is more talented than the Home Team and most of the players on the bench bring something to the table. I think Quavo will likely dominate the game again, with Ronnie 2K and Ray Allen as secondary scorers. North Carolina’s D-list celebrities are seriously out gunned against the rest of the world’s D-list celebrities. I would start Quavo, Allen, 2K, Dolson and Ray. Bad Bunny and Shaw should be able to bring some energy off the bench. Lasry can provide limited second unit scoring. Buckley’s production is a wild card, but this team doesn’t need any help. I think that the Away Team has a better roster and should win this game easily.

Ronnie 2K (influencer marketing)
Age: 35 Height: 6’5” Weight: Unknown
High school: Redwood
College: California – San Diego
Ronnie 2K will be making his inaugural Celebrity Game appearance. I expect Ronnie to continue the recent success of social media stars in the Celebrity Game. Ronnie has NBA height, good handles and 3-point range. I think that he will have a big role on this team, but the stacked roster could keep his individual stats down. Ronnie will play good minutes, score and rebound and could be the games MVP.
4-Point Potential: High

Ray Allen (former NBA player)
Age: 43 Height: 6’5” Weight: 205lbs
High school: Hillcrest (Played Varsity)
College: Connecticut (All American)
Ray Allen is way to good to belong in this game. He could probably still be a bench player in the NBA if he wanted to be. Ray Allen is one of the best shooters of all time and has exceptional height, handles and athleticism for this game. His twitter skills are not up to modern Celebrity Game standards. If Allen decided he wants to put effort, he could dominate this game. I expect that he will mostly stand around and shoot a couple of 3’s and 4’s, but if he hits a few, it will make a big impact on the game.
4-Point Potential: very high

A.J. Buckley (Actor)
Age: 41 Height: 5’9” Weight: 185lbs
High school: St. Thomas Moore
College: None
A.J. Buckley is….. you guessed it, another rookie to the Celebrity Game. While Buckley’s physical stats are what the ideal male body looks like for attracting females, it is not the ideal body for round ball. I couldn’t find any information on his life as a baller, so I am going to project the Buckley will not be a factor in this game.
4-Point Potential: low

Bad Bunny (Singer)
Age: 24 Height: 6’0” Weight: 175lbs
High school: Unknown
College: Puerto Rico at Arecibo
This will be Bad Bunny’s first NBA Celebrity Game appearance, though he did appear in the 2016 Reggaeton Celebrity Game. Unfortunately, there isn’t much footage from that game available. (Maybe I should start of database of Celebrity Game footage). Bad Bunny is one of the younger players in this game, and thus should be expected to hustle on defense. He has above average height as well. I can see him putting up a state line close to 1 steal, 2 points and 2 rebounds in 7 minutes.
4-Point Potential: low

Stefanie Dolson (WNBA Player)
Age: 27 Height: 6’5” Weight: 214 lbs
High school: Minisik Valley High School (Played Varsity)
College: University of Connecticut (Played Varsity)
Dolson is a WNBA All-Star, who will be making her second appearance in the Celebrity Game. Dolson once again will have a large height advantage over almost everyone in this game. Last year she stayed true to the WNBA tradition of putting zero effort into this game and played 12 minutes without taking a shot or recording a steal, rebound or assist. She did manage to commit 3 fouls. In the WNBS she is primarily a rebounder but has a good finishing touch on the post as well. She can also step out and hit around 40% from 3. Despite the abundant skills, I predict that Dolson’s performance will be no different from last year and that she will be a non-factor.
4-Point Potential: low

Mark Lasry (Milwaukee Bucks owner)
Age: 58 Height: Unknown Weight: Unknown
High school: Unknown
College: Clark
Lasry has played in the past three Celebrity Games. His most impressive achievement was putting up a game low -20 in plus/minus in 2016, while putting up 8 points and 6 rebounds in 18 minutes. He played less in 2017 and was mainly used to guard fellow owner Mark Cuban. In 2018, he was on the court for 9 minutes and scored 3 points while grabbing 2 rebounds. Lasry is old, slow and short, but has sneaky old man game. He is good at back door cuts, being in good spots on the floor and has a good mid-range jumper. He is a liability on the defensive end, being an old man and everything. Lasry can help off the bench, but it would be a mistake for him to see big minutes, last year’s 9 minutes was about double what I would want him to play.
4-Point Potential: None

Hasan Minaj (actor, comedian)
Age: 33 Height: 6’0” Weight: 175lbs
High school: Davis
College: UC-Davis
In 2017, Minhaj show cased why he cut three times from his high school basketball team when his team in the Celebrity Game was blown out by 29 points in one of the most lopsided Celebrity Games in history. He is not good and won’t offer much production.
4-Point Potential: none

Quavo (Rapper)
Age: 27 Height: 5’10” Weight: 163lbs
High school: Berkmar
College: None
Quavo previously appeared as a surprise entrant in last year’s Celebrity Game and skrrrt’d all over the competition, posting 19 points, 5 rebounds and 3 assists while shooting 7 of 10 from the floor and playing a game high 36-minutes. He was voted as the game’s MVP. Quavo is quick, can shoot and can handle the ball and most importantly, actually puts effort into this game. He is going to lead this team and scoring and could repeat as MVP. Steve Smith is probably the only player on the Home Team that can guard him.
4-Point Potential: medium

Adam Ray (Host)
Age: 35 Height: 6’2” Weight: Unknown
High school: Shorecrest (Played Varsity)
College: Southern California
Ray will be making his Celebrity Game debut. He played Varsity basketball in Highschool, which puts him ahead of many of the other players in this game in terms of basketball pedigree. He has good height for this game. I was not able to find any footage of him playing (a theme this year), but based on physical attributes, I think he should start at forward. He should be able to help on the boards.
4-Point Potential: low

Brad Williams (Comedian)
Age: 35 Height: 4’4” Weight: 104lbs
High school: Sunny Hills
College: Southern California
Brad Williams will be making his first appearance in the Celebrity Game. As part of ESPN’s desperate quest to replace Kevin Hart, he will be the first player born with achondroplasia to appear in the game. Being dwarf comedian who likes to make jokes about his height, Williams will most likely have a comedic role in this game. He will probably attempt a 4-point shot and get repeatedly stuffed.
4-Point Potential: low

Amanda Seales (Actress/Comedian/Recording Artist)
Age: 37 Height: 5’5” Weight: 135lbs
High school: Dr. Phillips
College: SUNY-Purchase
Amanda Seales is one of 17 rookies who will be appearing in the Celebrity Game. I don’t expect that Seales will be the first female celebrity to goo off in this game. At a Towering 5’5”, she is going to struggle in her small minutes in this game.
4-Point Potential: low

James Shaw Jr.(Hometown Hero)
Age: 30 Height: Unknown Weight: Unknown
High school: Hunters Lane (Played Varsity)
College: Tennessee State
James Shaw is the other “Hometown Hero” who will be appearing in this Celebrity Game. Shaw is the man who charged at and disarmed the shooter in the Nashville Waffle House Shooting. Shaw played basketball in high school, and I think that he may be able to contribute in the small amount of minutes that he will see the floor.
4-Point Potential: low

Coach:
Sue Bird (WNBA Player)
Sue Bird is two-time veteran of the Celebrity Game. She may be able to use this unique insight to guide her team to victory. Though realistically, all she needs to do it keep Quavo on the floor for an easy win.

Player Skill Ranking:
  1. Ray Allen
  2. Stephanie Dolson
  3. Quavo
  4. Ronnie 2K
  5. Adam Ray
  6. James Shaw Jr.
  7. Bad Bunny
  8. AJ Buckley
  9. Marc Lasry
  10. Hasan Minaj
  11. Amanda Seales
  12. Brad Williams
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bathrobeDFS - Daily Analysis for April 3rd (MLB)

Hello, everyone!! bathrobeDFS is here with your Daily MLB Analysis. First, I will go over any weather concerns. Then, we will take a look at the Vegas lines. Next, I will take a look at Pitchers. Then I will look at the Hitters. All of this will be discussed as someone who plays on DraftKings. If you have any additional questions or want to see guaranteed updates in regards to breaking news- I provide additional updates, information, and stats on my twitter @bathrobeDFS. Feel free to throw me a follow cause it’s much easier and more timely to provide updates over that medium. I also have a Venmo and Patreon for those that would like to donate
I also strongly suggest joining us on Flick. It’s a live chat app that allows me, and a wonderful group of people, to deal with news as it happens, talk about the slate, share lineups, and break things down in a way I simply can’t on any other medium. It is also invite only, so there are no trolls and only good, helpful people talking all different sports, all day, every day.. If you want to join us there, Download the Flick App and send me a message so I can get you an invite. That’s it! Free and easy!
With that being said, let’s get into it!
Game Notes (SPs, Vegas Lines, Weather)
MIL (Peralta, RHP) vs CIN (Castillo, RHP) - 1235pm - O/U - 8.5, Pick Em
PHI (Nola, RHP) vs WAS (Sanchez, RHP) - 105pm - O/U - 7.5, PHI -129
CWS (Rodon, LHP) vs CLE (Kluber, RHP) - 110pm - O/U - 7, CLE -195
COL (Marquez, RHP) vs TB (Morton, RHP) - 110pm - O/U - 7, TB -127
MIN (Gibson, RHP) vs KC (Bailey, RHP) - 115pm - O/U - 8.5, MIN -138
ARI (Ray, LHP) vs SD (Lucchesi, LHP) - 340pm - O/U - 7.5, SD -130
DET (Boyd, LHP) vs NYY (Loaisiga, RHP) - 405pm - O/U - 9.5, NYY - 185
BAL (Karns, RHP) vs TOR (Shoemaker, RHP) - 407pm - O/U - 8.5, TOR -160
NYM (deGrom, RHP) vs MIA (Richards, RHP) - 610pm - O/U - 7, NYM -210
STL (Mikolas, RHP) vs PIT (Taillion, RHP) - 705pm - O/U - 7.5, STL -120
CHC (Lester, LHP) vs ATL (Teheran, RHP) - 720pm - O/U - 8.5, ATL -120
HOU (Cole, RHP) vs TEX (Minor, LHP) - 805pm - O/U - 9, HOU -168
BOS (Eovaldi, RHP) vs OAK (Estrada, RHP) - 1007pm - O/U - 8.5, BOS -128
SF (Holland, LHP) vs LAD (Stripling, RHP) - 1010pm - O/U - 7.5, LAD -205
The Early Slate
A fun 5 game slate. Some good pitchers. Some good stacks. Should be a fun day. For those that are new to baseball, today are tomorrow are what’s called “getaway days.” That signifies an end of a series, where one or both of the teams are going to have to travel or “get away.” Because of that, the MLB schedule generally has only night games on Mondays and Tuesdays as teams start a series. On Wednesdays and Thursdays when series are finishing there will generally be 2 slates. One early slate and one late. Most getaway days will be like this. Then most Fridays are all night games. And weekends you’ve seen - a split day on Saturday, with most games on Sunday going off at 1 and 4 with one single Sunday night game. So let’s dive in to the first early slate on the first getaway day of this season!
Pitchers (in chronological order, basically)
Great Pitchers
Aaron Nola (10200, RHP) at WAS - Nola is in the category of “Potential Cy Young winners that you can play every day.” Let’s look at the numbers from last season. 33 GS, 212.1 IP, 224 K, 2.37 ERA, 3.01 FIP, 0.975 WHIP. Phenomenal stuff. He had 17 starts over 100 pitches and 16 under 100 pitches. 12% of fly balls against him were Infield Flies. I mean, dude had a 10.5 WAR. There are very few pitchers in the entire sport of baseball that are better than Aaron Nola. I can’t state that enough. Every single time he pitches, he is a viable play. I mean, sure Washington is a good team with a good lineup. But Nola is a beast and I feel like the public just doesn’t know that well enough yet. Plus, he gets a Nats lineup that will be missing Trea Turner due to a broken index finger, suffered from a HBP yesterday. His replacement is Wilmer Difo, which is like replacing a steak with a big mac - or, if you’re vegan, i’m sorry (i’m kidding, don’t send letters.)
German Marquez (9900, RHP) at TB - Marquez, like Nola, is a fantastic pitcher who gets ignored. It’s easy to ignore someone that pitches for the Rockies, but he is a legit ace. He had a K/9 of almost 11. He had an FIP of 3.40 as a starter that started predominantly in Coors. He is also someone with incredible home/away splits (something you really need to look at for Rockies players). He is decent at home, sure, but he is absolutely lights-out away from Coors. Now we get him in an extreme pitchers park in TB. Sign me up. What’s even more fun? He will be completely overlooked tomorrow with people going above and below him, price-wise.
Charlie Morton (8800, RHP) vs COL - This is one of those pitchers whose price and pedigree will make it so that people sleep on Marquez. But, to a degree, that’s ok. Cause Morton is a fucking awesome pitcher who can strike out a ton of people taking on a Rockies team that’s hitting worse than the BLUE JAYS lately. They can’t stop getting shut out. He doesn’t allow baserunners or runs. He has a K/9 of almost 11. And he’s way underpriced here. Don’t overthink this one, regardless of how chalky he is (and I expect him to be extremely chalky).
Good Pitchers, Bad Spots
Luis Castillo (8100, RHP) vs MIL - Castillo is a fantastic pitcher that can be as hit or miss as it gets. When he is on, he looks unhittable and will rack up double digit Ks. We saw that Castillo on opening day when, on a short leash, he struck out 8 in 5.2 IP. The thing with Castillo, though, is he is an extreme splits pitcher. That means he is absolutely dominant against RHB but has a lot of trouble with LHB. This is going to be a big problem against this MIL lineup that features a bunch of LH power from top to bottom. This is one of those situations (like almost anyone that would be in this category or the GPP category) where I advise, if doing MME, you get exposure to both Castillo AND the MIL Lefties.
GPP Plays
Freddy Peralta (7500, RHP) at CIN - I don’t love Peralta, but I do know enough about him to know that he is a dangerous pitcher with a ton of upside that is absolute murder on RHB. If you look at his first game, he came out of the gate really shaky, giving up a HR to Goldie right after walking Carpenter. He then hit the next hitter before getting Ozuna to ground into a fielder’s choice. Ozuna then came around on a double by Yadi Molina. Peralta lost Fowler on a 3-2 pitch before the pitching coach came out, settled Peralta down, and he struck out the next 2 batters. Over the next couple of innings, he gave up a single to Goldy, a double to Ozuna, another walk to Fowler, and then started off the 4th giving up a cheap knock to the opposing pitcher on an 0-2 count and another hit to Carpenter on an 0-2 count before being pulled. To me, knowing Peralta is someone that has trouble with LHB but is absolute murder on RHB, that seems like someone who might have had the first-start jitters and, after being unable to settle in, was given a quick hook. I would expect, against a much less imposing Reds lineup Peralta will have more success. There’s a couple tough Lefties there, sure (more on that later), but he should also be able to get himself more than a couple easy strikeouts and put up a high enough score to pay this salary today.
Anibal Sanchez (5900, RHP) vs PHI - This is not a play for the weak stomached among you. Sanchez is someone who had been coming off pretty terrible 2016 and 2017s. He was 7-13 with a 5.87 ERA in 2016 and 3-7 with a 6.41 ERA in 2017. Both years he was removed as a starter and placed in the bullpen. Last year, the Braves took a chance on him and, for the most part, he came through. He got a 7-6 record with 2.83 ERA in 24 starts, racking up 136.2 IP and 135 Ks. The deeper stats tell of someone who had a bit of a 2nd wind year, though, and not a complete renaissance. His FIP was 3.62, nearly a full point more than his ERA. This is in stark contrast to 16/17, when Sanchez’ FIP was significantly lower. This shows just how important defense is behind certain pitchers. Fortunately for Sanchez, he will be playing in front of one of the best Ds in the MLB, according to fangraphs projections. Though that would be different without Trea. His WHIP was 1.08 which is the lowest it’s ever been in his career. His H/9 was 7.0 which was the lowest in his career. We are going have to see how age and a completely new set of teammates and coaches treats Sanchez. He could be someone we regularly pick on (if he is 2016-17 Sanchez) or someone we can get for value (if he pitches like last year). This early in the season, I’m all for taking a chance on him at this price, especially since it’s only a 5 game slate. Also, playing him with any other pitcher would pretty much allow us to fit in any bat we wanted on this slate. Even if he has a mediocre game, that might give us enough points to take down a GPP.
Carlos Rodon (7000, LHP) at CLE - This is a play that is going to sneak under the radar because people don’t realize that CLE is a shell of the offense it was last year without Lindor at the top of the order. He will be back soon enough, I’m sure. And the pitching is more than enough to make up for any offensive deficiencies. But, that being said, they are real, real weak right now. And they get a kid in Rodon who was a top prospect with lightning stuff and huge upside that could never find enough control to make the jump to the next level. His first start was good, though, suffering a tough luck loss against a KC team that got a fantastic start from Keller that day. He still went 5.1 IP, only allowing 3 hits with 1 walk and getting 6 Ks. Another thing going for him? He’s a reverse splits pitcher who will only see 1 LHB in this Indians lineup. Like I said, this is a kid that will go overlooked today, but he has all the upside in the world. And he could make good on that against a poor Indians team.
**Batters **
Stacking Opportunities (in no particular order)
Brewers vs Castillo (RHP, @CIN) The Brewers get to travel to Great American Smallpark for a tough matchup against Castillo. Well a tough matchup for their RHB. For the LHB? Time to eat at low ownership!! Just last season, Castillo gave up an OPS of .587 to RHB and .882 to LHB. You have to go there if you can. Like I said earlier, this is a spot where, if you MME, you should have some shares of Castillo and some shares of MIL LHB.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 8
Chalk Level (1-10): 3
Preferred Stack: Full or Mini - LHB ONLY
Preferred Players: Yelich (OF - 5500), Shaw (1B/3B - 4300), Moustakas (2B - 4600), Grandal (C - 4100)
Phillies vs Sanchez (RHP, @WAS) - I did a full write up of Sanchez above. As I mentioned, he is coming off a good year preceded by 2 horrific years. If he pitches like the horrific Sanchez, Phillies are gonna score 10 runs in the first 3 innings. One thing to note - Sanchez shows reverse splits, so you can prioritize RHB and separate yourself from the field.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 5
Chalk Level (1-10): 9
Preferred Stack: Full
Preferred Players: If you are stacking this, you are going all in. So start at the top and work down. So - McCutchen (OF - 3800), Segura (SS - 3700), Bryce (OF - 4500), Hoskins (1B - 4100), Realmuto (C - 3800), etc..
Royals vs Gibson (RHP, MIN) - Kyle Gibson will finally be making his 1st start this season, after Berrios made his 2nd. That should tell you that this is a 31 year old we shouldn’t expect all too much out of (although he had a good year last year.) Last season, he had a FIP of 4.13, which was decent, but his WHIP of 1.302 was not. He gave up a ton of walks. So much so, if he had given up his career level of H/9, he would have had a WHIP of 1.44. He also gives up a decent amount of HR, meaning he is someone we are going to be able to stack against every time he pitches, for the most part. Today we get KC in the lucky spot. It’s worth noting a couple of things - 1st, before last season, when he had a K/9 of 8.2, he had never been over 6.9. I expect him to go back down under 7. All the better to help keep rallies going. Second, he is a normal splits pitcher, so make sure you prioritize LHB against him.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 7
Chalk Level (1-10): 3
Preferred Stack: Full
Preferred Players: Whit (2B/OF - 4900), Mondesi (SS - 5100), Soler (OF - 3900), O’Hearn (1B - 3900), Duda (1B - 4100), etc..
Twins vs Homer Bailey (RHP, @KC) - Homer Bailey is one of the worst pitchers in baseball. This stack is going to be chalk and I don’t care. Bailey is entering his age 33 season and, if it’s anything like his age 32 season, he will be unemployed before long and Ian Kennedy will be next up to work his way towards unemployment. Bailey had an FIP of 5.55 last season with a WHIP of 1.636. He gave up 11.9 H/9 and a horrific 1.9 H9. He’s also equally bad against RHP and LHP, but extra horrible against LHP when it comes to slugging, so play every single LHP that you can against him.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 10
Chalk Level (1-10): 10
Preferred Stack: Full
Preferred Players: Everyone. Including the ghost of Kirby Puckett. Kepler (OF - 4400), Polanco (SS - 4100), Cruz (OF - 5000), Rosario (OF - 4700), Cron (1B - 4500), etc..
One-Off Batters
Reds Lefties - Writing this at 1am, it’s hard to know exactly who is going to start. I assume that we will get Winkler (OF - 3700), Votto (1B - 4000), Barnhart (C - 3300), and Schebler (OF - 3900). It should be noted, though - Schebler is a reverse splits hitter, meaning he is better against LHP. Also, Barnhart is a much better hitter as a Righty meaning he is also better against LHP. I wouldn’t mind taking a chance on any one of them (or a 2 or 3 person mini stack). Though, again, Peralta is a tough pitcher who can have a lights-out game if everything is going right.
Rhys Hoskins (1B - 4900) - Hoskins is my favorite batter on this slate. He is an extreme reverse splits hitter going against a reverse splits pitcher. If you’re doing that math at home, that means Hoskins is going to get you a HR today. EVEN IF YOU PLAY SANCHEZ he is cheap enough you can ALSO play Hoskins and still have a GPP winning lineup.
HR CALL OF THE SLATE: Rhys Hoskins
Main Slate
This is a lot more tricky than this afternoon. Very few pitching options. A TON of stacks we will want to play. It will be interesting to see how you all decide to attack it. I will focus on 2 pitchers and make lineups with them and a bunch of different stacks around them.
Pitchers (in chronological order, basically)
Great Pitchers
Jameson Taillon (7900, RHP) vs STL - I know he didn’t have the best start of his career against the Reds on Opening Day, but I stand by what I said about him that day - he is a legit ace and will be a top 10 pitcher for the Cy Young this year. He has talent. He has drive. And he’s getting better. A 3.20 ERA with a similarly impressive 3.46 FIP. A 1.178 WHIP. A K/9 of 8.4. A H9 of 0.9. 20 of his 32 starts were QS. SO-BB is 16.9%. I mean, I could just go on, but I’m just reading off amazing stats he put up. This isn’t the easiest lineup to face in the Cards, but apart from Carpenter and Goldie, he shouldn’t have much trouble getting through these guys while racking up the Ks.
Gerrit Cole (11400, RHP) at TEX - As I have said a bunch of times now, Cole is my pick for Cy Young in the AL this year. He is a great pitcher and getting greater. He doesn’t walk anyone. He barely gives up any hits. He strikes out a ton of people (Opening Day he got 10 K in 6 IP). If he goes longer today (or even if he doesn’t) we can almost guarantee double digit Ks. You can’t say that about a lot of people. If you are new to DFS, you may be shocked to hear that pitchers will reach the 13-14k range eventually. Cole is still laughably underpriced due to how early it is in the season. I don’t care if he’s 75% owned and you are playing GPP, if you are doing one lineup and you don’t play Cole on this slate you should just burn your money instead. If you do MME, feel free to not have in some lineups, obviously. But don’t get cute here.
No Thanks
Nate Eovaldi (9000, RHP) at OAK - While you might be surprised when looking at Nate Eovaldi and his electric, 100-mph stuff, he doesn’t strike people out. He has the lowest K/9 of anyone on the Red Sox staff, hovering around 8 K/9. Which isn’t terrible. He’s just overpriced for a road matchup against a dangerous OAK team. I spent a long time debating whether to put him as a GPP play or make a stack recommendation out of Oakland that I didn’t really like. Then I realized I can just not play anyone from here, minus a one off or two...
Batters
Stacking Opportunities (in no particular order)
Pirates vs Miles Mikolas (RHP, STL) - On Opening Day, I recommended that you stack against Mikolas, even though it wouldn’t be popular to do so. I talked about how his success comes from control and some luck and, if he loses a little of either of that, he could have a terrible day. I mean, the dude only walked 25 people last season unintentionally. That’s insane. Well he’s already up to 1, on top of the 5 ER he gave up in 5 IP. Like I said, if he isn’t immaculate in his control, he is going to get hammered. So why not take the bet that someone won’t be perfect, when everyone else would be on him. Especially when people talk about his success and the story and the narrative and the control and ignore the fact he also gave up the most hits in the majors. I mean, come on. Learn to recognize a mirage quickly, folks, or prepare to get lost in the desert.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 9
Chalk Level (1-10): 3
Preferred Stack: Full - LHB preferred/Reverse Splits RHB
Preferred Players: The following batters are LHB/SH or Reverse Splits RHB - Frazier (2B - 3900), Dickerson (OF - 4300), Bell (1B - 3900), Melky (OF - 3800), Kang (3B/SS - 4200), Marte (OF - 4700), Gonzalez (SS - 3700)
Braves vs Jon Lester (LHP, CHC) - Another really sneaky stack here that I know that people won’t be on, cause they overrate Jon Lester and may not realize how annoying the Braves lineup is. In 2017, people worried about Lester and his 4.33 ERA. But, much like a lot of pitchers, this was somewhat bad luck as his FIP was 4.10. Not great, but still lower than his ERA. He also had a 9.0 K/9, though you could see a lot of the other peripheral stats worsening. In 2018, even though his ERA was 3.32, like i said before, his FIP was more than a run higher- 4.39. That’s really bad. His WHIP was 1.310, which is bad. This is reflected in his 8.6 H/9 and his 3.2 BB/9, the highest it had been since 2011. The real concerning stat, though, is his K/9 dropped from 9.0 to 7.4. The lowest since he was 24 years old in 2008. The AL East in 2008 is a lot different than last year’s NL Central, though. When a pitcher is striking out less and walking more, we can see the writing on the wall. Especially when he is 35. He is someone we can play occasionally (some lineups are horrible against lefties, some are the Marlins). But the high walks and the low Ks is something that worries me. Oh. Also- Lester can’t throw to first base (or has a lot of trouble doing it). So you can also prioritize people who can steal a base against him. Last thing- Lester is a lefty. He gave up a .250 BA to righties last year and a .279 BA to Lefties. He gave up a .696 OPS to Righties and a .878 OPS to Lefties. This is pretty extreme reverse splits and you need to focus on taking lefties against Lester when everyone else doesn’t realize this fact.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 9
Chalk Level (1-10): 3
Preferred Stack: Full - LHB preferred
Preferred Players: Freeman (1B - 4600), Inciarte (OF - 3900), Markakis (OF - 3700), Acuna (OF - 4800), Donaldson (3B - 4600), Albies (2B/SS - 4300), McCann (C - 3700)
Cubs vs Teheran (RHP, @ATL) - Much like Jon Lester, Teheran can’t get LHB out. While that mattered less on Opening Day against a predominantly RH Phillies lineup, it WILL matter a lot when the Cubs come to town. Teheran is an ace. But he’s like a diva ace. He’s very temperamental. He’ll show up, but he doesn’t always show up. And, with the built-in problems he has against LHB, I will have to take the chance of stacking here, though, at 7000, he is absolutely a GPP play given his upside. Just don’t expect anything out of him. And do not waste a single lineup spot on a -EV chance.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 8
Chalk Level (1-10): 9
Preferred Stack: Full or Mini - LHB greatly preferred
Preferred Players: Rizzo (1B - 4900), Zobrist (2B/OF - 3900), Schwarber (OF - 4600), Bryant (3B/OF - 4700), Baez (SS - 5300)
Astros vs Mike Minor (LHP, @TEX) - Oh boy. Not only do we get an Astros team that absolutely murders LHP, we get them against Mike Minor - someone who doesn’t strike anyone out and gives up more homers than the Fox Outlet during a clearance sale. This is probably going to be the chalkiest stack of the night. And it should be.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 10
Chalk Level (1-10): 10
Preferred Stack: Full
Preferred Players: Start at the top and work your way down - Springer (OF - 4900), Altuve (2B - 5200), Bregman (3B/SS - 5400), Brantley (OF - 4300), Correa (SS - 4800), etc...
Red Sox vs Marco Estrada (RHP, @OAK) - All these amazing road teams, guaranteed 9 times at bat, in great spots. It really is an embarrassment of riches for a 5 game slate. Estrada is a terrible pitcher. Sure he’ll have some great days. But the odds are thin one of those will come against this Red Sox team. I should also note, he is an extreme reverse splits pitcher, so stock up on RHB where everyone else will play the LHB. Also, and most importantly, Estrada gives up more homers than a Classics professor passing out her reading material for the semester.
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 9
Chalk Level (1-10): 10
Preferred Stack: Full - RHB preferred
Preferred Players: Betts (OF - 5500), Martinez (OF - 5100), Bogaerts (SS - 4300), Vazquez (C - 3300), Nunez (2B/3B - 3800), Benintendi (OF - 4800), Devers (3B - 4100)
Dodgers vs Derek Holland (LHP, SF) - Another great offense going against a horrible pitcher. This time we get LAD vs Derek Holland, someone who is lucky to have a job. If this was a 24 team league, he would either be in AAA or retired. The Dodgers are dangerous against everyone, although more potent against RHP, which is a slight knock to them. Also, they are home where most of the other stacks are away, meaning we are going to miss out on a whole inning of AB from them, which could be a tiebreaker to consider. Still, they are going against Derek Holland who gives up more homers than Lieutenant Gigot (look it up).
How much do I love this stack? (1-10): 8
Chalk Level (1-10): 10
Preferred Stack: Full - RHP preferred
Preferred Players: Hernandez (2B - 4200), Turner (3B - 4400), Pollock (OF - 4600), Freese (1B/3B - 3700), Seager (SS - 4400), Taylor (OF/SS - 4100), Barnes (C - 3900)
One-Off Batters
Kendrys Morales (1B - 3800), Grossman (OF - 3400), Profar (1B/2B - 3700) - While I wouldn’t take this as far as a 3 person stack, I wouldn’t mind playing 2 of these dudes tonight, especially Grossman at 3400 who should be batting leadoff. Eovaldi has a lot of trouble with LHB and these 3 are annoying enough that they can give him fits tonight. They are all also cheap as hell, which, honestly, we need desperately tonight given how expensive everything is.
HR CALL OF THE SLATE: George Springer
Alright everyone! That does it for an awesome day of MLB. Now for a giant NBA slate! I better get to work. It’s only 2am after all! I’ll eat and sleep when I’m dead. Or in a couple of weeks :D.
submitted by bathrobeDFS to dfsports [link] [comments]

The **GROAT** argument: Shane Battier

Shane Battier is the GROAT
Greatest Role [player] Of All Time
 
Role player as defined by Red Auerbach:
“For Auerbach, the key was to look beyond individual honors and focus on the team. Specifically, Auerbach and the Celtics are considered to be the first organization to popularize the concept of a “role player.” According to Auerbach, a role player is someone “who willingly undertakes a thankless job that has to be done in order to make the whole package fly.” Auerbach went on to add that the Celtics represent a philosophy that in its simplest form maintains that victory belongs to the team: “Individual honors are nice, but no Celtic has ever gone out of his way to achieve them,” he said. “We have never had the league’s top scorer. In fact, we won seven league championships without placing even one among the league’s top ten scorers. Our pride was never rooted in statistics.””
 
After his illustrious college career, Shane came into the league as a player expected to be the key go-to scorer, but alongside players like Pau Gasol and Mike Miller, Shane immediately assumed the role required to help the team the most (defense, corner threes, hustle, smarts) and continued it throughout his career. Part of what makes Shane the GROAT was his ability to alter his mindset and role for each game. When nothing more than a defender and rebounder was needed, Shane was there to lock it down; when the team needed someone to step up and score some points or hit a clutch shot, Shane was there to knock it down.
What distinguishes Shane from the other great Role Players in history (Dennis Rodman especially, Robery Horry, etc.) was Battier’s on and off court contributions. Shane was a crucial leader in EVERY locker room starting from his rookie year at Memphis, and on the court he would do whatever was asked. This is the X-factor when going against a Dennis Rodman in the “role player” category. Though Dennis is most likely the greatest rebounder the league has seen and an absolute force on defense, he lacked both the locker-room aspect (the “glue” or “lego”) as well as the adaptation to circumstances that Shane brought. Dennis was an all-star and DPOY, but he was not a role player; he was a HOF player who only had one role.
 
 
College (yes we’re going there for background info):
 
Grizzlies first term:
 
Rockets:
 
The prodigal son returns to the Grizz:
 
The Heat:
 
Veteran role:
 
Career
 
Personal roles:
 
Role in the Community:
 
 
Shane changed the way statistics are used in the game, both by management and players; changed the way shots are contested; changed the way teammates handled their newfound fame and fortune; changed communities; and ultimately, Shane changed what it takes to be the GROAT.
 
 
Quotes about Shane -
 
The Miami streak -
Udonis Haslem on Shane’s speech sparking the 27 game win streak:
Ray Allen:
 
 
Quotes from Shane -
Comments about David Green, a graduate of University of Florida through the Take Charge Foundation.
When asked about his jersey retired at Duke:
 
Shane on Kobe:
1)
2)
 
 
sources / interesting articles:
submitted by TheGROAT to nba [link] [comments]

[OC] Teams that will perform worse in the second half of the season

We tend to overuse the word "regression" in sports, but there's some value to the concept when it comes to predicting future results. Win-loss record can be deceiving, so you have to dig further into the numbers to determine which records are likely to continue and which are likely to be a mirage.
While there are 1000 different statistics that we can start to analyze to that end, I always find the simplest route is these 3 major factors.
(1) Point differential. Statisticians have always utilized "point differential" as a more predictive stat than pure wins-losses. The common sense suggests that a 100-80 win is a stronger statement than a 101-100 win. The superiority of point differential to predict future success is less extreme in basketball (because teams do tend to "turn on the gas" when needed), but it's still generally valid. For example, in this season, the Utah Jazz got off to a slow start, but had a positive point differential. Sure enough, the wins soon followed. Conversely, teams with better-than-expected records and mediocre point differentials (like Memphis or Orlando) started to sag.
(2) 3-point shooting. Some players improve as shooters over the course of their careers. Some get worse. But if a player's three point percentage takes a SUDDEN jolt (either up or down) there's always a strong chance of regression coming. For example, Klay Thompson got off to a cold start this year from beyond the arc, but is predictably warming up. The Houston Rockets also started in a shooting slump, but have started to turn that around (with wins to match.) Because three pointers are so important, the natural ebb and flow is something that we should monitor.
(3) Injuries. Obviously, injuries to star players can affect a team's performance. If a team anticipates getting that star back, then they can be expected to improve. Alternatively, if a team has been uniquely healthy then they may get slightly worse when a normal amount of injuries hit.
We used that easy formula to check in on teams that should get better, so now let’s examine some teams that may stumble in the second half.
teams that will be worse than their current record
Sacramento Kings: 24-24, 10th seed in the West
As far as unexpectedly hot starts go, the Memphis Grizzlies and Dallas Mavericks have already started to cool off. The Sacramento Kings are hanging around, but may be joining them soon.
The most obvious red flag would be their point differential of -2.0, a mark well below their .500 record. Their net rating (-1.7 per 100 possessions) is also a below-average mark that ranks 21st in the NBA. By all accounts, this team should already be worse than their record so far.
The shooting numbers suggest it may take an even stronger dip than anticipated. SF Nemanja Bjelica got off to a scorching start (shooting over 50% from three) that is already trending down to 41.3%. Buddy Hield is a great shooter (43% from three over the last two years) but also punching slightly over his weight class with a 45.5% mark that would be hard to anybody to sustain.
But at the end of the day, the player who is most likely to regress is their most pleasant surprise so far: super soph De'Aaron Fox. Fox has exploded in Year 2 from every category, and is shooting 36.9% from beyond the arc. It's natural for a young player to improve, but this much improvement makes you raise an eyebrow. Fox only shot 30.7% as a rookie last year. Moreover, his mediocre free throw percentage (72% from the line both years) suggest that his stroke is not as pure as someone like Hield. I would bet against Fox shooting 35% from three in the second half of the year, which should push these Kings a little further down the standings.
In terms of injuries, it goes both ways. I'm a big Marvin Bagley III fan so I'd like to see him come back and play 25+ minutes a night. He has All-Star potential down the road. Still, it's hard for most rookies to be "positive" players, so 25+ minutes a night for Bagley may not be a great thing for a playoff chase this year.
All in all, this is a Sacramento team that is most likely the 12th best team in the West. I would not expect their playoff push to continue throughout the year.
L.A. Clippers: 26-22, 8th seed in the West
Doc Rivers' brigade of above-average players have worked like a charm this year, yielding a 26-22 record and a playoff spot. So far. But if I had to gamble on their second half, I would bet against them making the field.
The point differential suggests this team may be overachieving slightly, at a +0.4 mark that's closer to .500 than 26-22. But to be fair, that's splitting hairs. That's around their expected record.
But my biggest concern for this team is that they've had to click on all cylinders to get to that record. Most notably: Danilo Gallinari. The Italian Stallion is playing like a star again, nailing 44.6% from three on the year. He's a good shooter, but he's not that good. For his career, he averages 37.5%. Expect him to shoot around that mark again.
The bigger concern is about Gallinari's health. He's played 44 games this year, but that durability may not continue. Gallinari has missed at least 15 games over each of the past 4 seasons. The idea that Gallinari would be 100% healthy for the entire year feels overly optimistic to me. And if Gallo misses an extended stretch, that may cause the team to sag. While the Clippers do have great depth, they're not loaded at the SF-PF spots beyond Tobias Harris and Gallinari. An injury to either would be a tough blow to overcome.
Overall, I'd expect this team to be around .500 in the second half of the season and finish around the 9 or 10 spot in the West.
Brooklyn Nets: 26-23, 6th seed in the East
This one pains me, because I am a huge fan of the rebuild that Sean Marks and Kenny Atkinson have achieved so far in the most difficult of circumstances. I am a fan of their decisions, their culture, and the passion of their fanbase. But to that fanbase, I would simply urge some slight caution. Your team may not be ready… yet.
The team has a better record than point differential (+0.2), but again, that's a marginal difference. In fact, with the team's constant improvement, you may project continued growth from here. They have won 5 games in a row, after all. They're hot.
But with that, there's a decent chance of a regression as well. The biggest culprit to that end would be new-star D'Angelo Russell. Russell has started to showcase his upside as a scorer this season, lighting it up for 19.3 points per game (and 24.1 PPG in January).
Still, there's a concern about how he is doing that scoring. Russell hardly ever gets to the free throw line. He's averaging 1.9 attempts per game, and is even under that 2.0 mark during his hot run in January.
And when you're not getting to the line, you're heavily reliant on your ability to shoot. There are shooters who can get away with that formula: Steph Curry, Kyrie Irving, Klay Thompson, etc. It'd a stretch to lump Russell in with that group. His 43.8% from the field represents a career high (which had been the 41.4% from last year). He's shooting 37.9% from three, despite a career 35.3% total.
There's absolutely a chance that Russell (still only 22) has turned the corner after 3 mediocre years. But there's also a chance that he's shooting better than expected and is about to take a step back. And if that happens, his inability/unwillingness to draw free throws will become much more problematic. I imagine this may be an unpopular notion right now, in the same way it was unpopular when I pointed out the same about Dion Waiters (during his hot season) and Donovan Mitchell (during his rookie year). We all may hate free throws, but they are hugely important for scorers.
Overall, I would still expect these Nets to make the playoffs in the weak Eastern Conference, but I would not count on this current trend where they're rocketing up the standings. More likely, they will settle in the back half of the playoff field and get bounced in 5 games in round one.
Indiana Pacers: 32-15, 3rd seed in the East
Unfortunately, we had to add this one in late after the horrible news about Victor Oladipo's season-ending injury. It's a cruel blow for him and a fanbase that's gone through this before.
There's no question the Pacers will be worse in the second half of the season: it's simply a matter of how much worse?
I don't think you can make the argument that Oladipo propped this team on his back in the same way James Harden does. While Oladipo may have been earning some darkhorse (and irrational) MVP predictions heading into the season, he predictably regressed as a shooter after his career year. That said, he's still a legit All-Star and someone that ESPN real plus/minus grades as the third best SG in the NBA. That'll be tough to replace.
On the bright side, the Pacers have one of the few backup guards capable of trying to emulate him in Tyreke Evans. Evans isn't great for every situation, but he has experience acting as a high usage playmaker in a way that few backups do. If he can play Poor Man's Oladipo, he can help fill that gap to some degree.
You also have to retain some faith in the Pacers' defensive system and culture. Oladipo was a key part of that, but it goes beyond Oladipo. In fact, the Pacers have averaged a top 10 defense since all the way back in 2000.
So all in all, this is a more optimistic portion of the post. The Pacers will be worse (qualifying them for this section), but not egregiously worse. They may be around .500 or even slightly better in the second half of the season. And with that, I expect them to only dip down to the 5th seed by the end of the year.
submitted by ZandrickEllison to nba [link] [comments]

bathrobeDFS - Daily Analysis for April 7th (NBA)

Hello, everyone! bathrobeDFS here with your daily basketball article. I will go over tonight’s slate as someone that plays on Draftkings. If you have any additional questions or want to see guaranteed updates in regards to breaking news- I provide additional updates, information, and stats on my twitter @bathrobeDFS. Feel free to throw me a follow cause it’s much easier and more timely to provide updates over that medium. I also have a Venmo and Patreon for those that want to donate.
I also strongly suggest joining us on Flick. It’s a live chat app that allows me, and a wonderful group of people, to deal with news as it happens, talk about the slate, share lineups, and break things down in a way I simply can’t on any other medium. It is also invite only, so there are no trolls and only good, helpful people talking all different sports, all day, every day.. If you want to join us there, Download the Flick App and send me a message so I can get you an invite. That’s it! Free and easy!
It also should go without saying, this is just a preliminary analysis of the slate: everything can change throughout the day, so make sure you are staying on top of any and all injury news and change your lineups accordingly!
Vegas Lines and Injury News
SA/CLE - 219.5, SA -9
OKC/MIN - 229, OKC -6.5
CHA/DET - 215, DET -6.5
BK/IND - 220, IND -3.5
DAL/MEM - 212, MEM -2
ATL/MIL - 234, MIL -10.5
PHX/HOU - 225, HOU -18.5 (lol)
ORL/BOS - 217, BOS -5
WAS/NY - 226, WAS -4.5
LAC/GS - 236.5, GS -11.5
DEN/POR - 217, POR -7.5
NO/SAC - 234, SAC -10.5
Oh god. It’s a 14 game slate. This late in the season. I don’t know how any of us are supposed to handle that when half of every roster is out, half of all teams don’t care about winning right now, and half of the games are not even playable. If you haven’t taken a look at the remaining schedule for the NBA season, you may be surprised just how it looks. Right now we have:
End of Season
So be ready for some pouring without any raining. Especially for me. Sigh. Let’s get into it.
Early Slate
Here is a quick 5 game! Then we have a bigger slate tonight. Let’s get into it.
Situations to take advantage of (injury news, etc.) - Basically, in chronological order
Spurs vs Cavs
This is a game vs a very good team playing the best D over the past month vs the Cavs. I don’t care what the spread says. On top of everything else, this is a slow paced game. With a 5 game slate here, we may have to take whatever we can get here. So, first, on the Spurs I am taking White (5400) matched up against a terrible CLE guard D. Sexton and Clarkson are so, so bad it’s not even believable. White is going to have a field day. You can also go to LMA (8500) but I suspect that he will be guarded by Love. DDR (7600) is a much better option for 50 DKP against the also horrid D of Cedi.
On the Cavs side, if you want to play anyone, go for the Bigs - with Thompson out, I will take a chance on either Love (7200), Nance (6600) or Zizic (3600), though Nance is slightly too expensive, even if Tristan is out.
Thunder vs Wolves
This one is super easy - almost all of the usage in this game is going to go through 3 people. So we should definitely focus on Westbrook (11400), who has a tremendous matchup against a bad Wolves PG defense, PG13 (10000), who will see the horrid D of Wiggins, and KAT (9700), who has a tough matchup against Adams, but isn’t really guardable since he creates shots if he can’t get to the basket. You can go for any of these 3, and I am a big fan of starting your lineups for this slate by taking 2 of them and building around it.
The other play I would draw your attention to is Okogie (4300), who I hate playing, but he is the SG getting 25-30 minutes against OKC. You can also go to Schroder (5600), since he will get a bunch of usage and will still face some terrible D. The same goes for Grant (5600) who will get a bunch of time against Saric.
Hornets vs Pistons
While I didn’t think it was possible, someone fell past Kanter into the spot of “worst defensive C in the NBA.” That someone is Hernangomez (4400). He is certainly someone you can play at that price, especially considering his opponent isn’t one of the best defenders himself. But the real play in this game is Drummond (9600). The Pistons are in a must win spot, and, as much as I think it’s worth a GPP shot on a too-cheap Blake (8400), Drummond should easily get a 20/20 today if given the time. If you want to take one of the OKC guys and Drummond instead of KAT, I totally get it.
You can take a shot on Kemba (9100) if you really want, but Detroit is SO SLOW and SO DEFENSIVE and they actually care, so I would rather find the money and spend up for someone else. With Marvin out, you can also take a chance on Kaminsky (5300) who should get a ton of minutes today, and could easily pay off a salary most people would be hesitant to pay.
Nets vs Pacers
With the Nets able to take advantage of the absence of Giannis yesterday, today that will face another one of the toughest defensive matchups in the NBA, taking on the Pacers in a pace down matchup where it is going to be tough for the Nets to score a lot of points. This means it will be really tough for me to go to D Lo (9300) at that price. I will, however, continue to take a stab on either Dinwiddie (5300) or LeVert (5700) since they have seemed to get to a point where only one of them will have a good performance per day, since fantasy points are a zero sum game after all. I would lean heavier on LeVert, given his matchups against Wes and Bojan are the best matchups on the Pacers while Dinwiddie will almost certainly see more Tyreke, who is a great defender in his own rite.
On the Pacers, we have CENTERS AGAINST THE NETS. This means you can play BOTH Turner (6700) and/or Sabonis (6500) and both would be fantastic plays with a serious chance to pay off. I even think, on a 5 game slate, you can play both of them together in order to separate yourself from a field that will not do that. I think one of these guys will have close to 50 and the other close to 40 and, at those prices, I will take it.
Mavs vs Grizzlies
Yuck. This game is a mess. Conley probably won’t play. Doncic isn’t playing. They traded away their good centers. They play slow but give up a ton of points. It just sucks. That being said, this is still a 5 game slate so we need to take what we can get.
That means, on the Dallas side, going all in on Brunson (5200) who should be the first person you lock in today. You should also give serious consideration to Powell (6100) who will be seeing a horrific defender, no matter who mans C for Memphis (presumably Rabb). BUt Brunson is, far and away, my favorite. I think Burke (5200) is an interesting pivot, especially considering how unpopular he will be (especially after his performance last game). But that’s the kind of player Burke is. Horrible and infuriating. With Kleber out, we have seen Dallas go smaller more often than not, making Jackson (4600) a really sneaky play that no one will be on, but could easily get over 30 DKP on this small slate, winning it for you.
On the Grizzlies side, it’s pretty easy. Wright (7100) is too expensive for most people to pay for him, but he showed you his upside. Dallas is one of the worst teams against PG and he could repeat. While I don’t expect him to, I don’t think it’s chasing points to expect him to have another fantastic game here. I do expect him to be chalky though, so if you want to pivot off that to another player who has shown his upside in a similarly fantastic matchup, go down to Dorsey (5000) who almost no one will be on. I will also add, Rabb (5600) is going to get about 30 minutes and, while he’s not the best, neither is Powell and he should easily pay this off. Also Zeller (3100) is going to play 18 or so minutes and, while I hate to use up a C spot here, he is my favorite punt on the slate and it’s not even close.
Main Slate
Ahhh the last Sunday of Regular Season NBA for this year. The Playoffs start in 6 days. That’s nuts. I can’t wait to be pissed that the Warriors win again cause, come on. Let’s be realistic here. No one wants it but who is going to stop them??
Hawks vs Bucks
Oh god. This game was already going to be a slaughter. Now we get a Bucks team on the 2nd half of a back-to-back, so we have NO idea who they are resting tonight (because, come on.. Let’s be realistic). What we do know is that Trae and Collins are OUT for the Hawks. THat means that you can literally just play any Bucks that wind up starting. Since Giannis was out yesterday, assuming that was for rest and not an actually injury, he is the best bet for production. But, again, why would this game stay even remotely close?? Depending on who starts, the most expensive play I would take is Bledsoe (7200) and then get cheaper from there. Any of the Bucks are in play against the super fast, non defensive Hawks team. I greatly prefer the punts though, like Hill (4600) and Wilson (3900) and PatCon (4800)
On the Hawks side, you have to lock in Jaylen Adams (3400) who will get all the minutes he can handle, and Bembry (5300) who becomes the backup PG. It’s not a great matchup, but it’s not like they’re going to forfeit at halftime. Dudes are still gonna get minutes and put shots up. It’s just a question of figuring out who is most likely. Right now, Adams and Bembry will control the ball enough, they should be the top priorities. This leaves Bazemore (3900) running SG for most of the time, making him a fantastic punt play as well. Just know he’s been exceedingly popular lately. I would imagine that Anderson (4000) and Bembry will backup Baze, with Anderson also getting on backup SF duty behind Prince (4900). While Prince is fine, I love Anderson significantly more, especially at that price and the minutes and production he will get without Trae and Collins. PF will be manned by Vince Carter (3600) and Isaac Humphries (3000). Adams and Humphries are almost certainly going to wind up being the best 2 punts on the slate. I expect both of them to get 10x here. Carter will also get some serious minutes, and he’s probably going to be done soon. So they might as well run him out as much as they can. Without Collins, I think Len (5100) and Davis (3300) are OK plays, but I like others more for production, especially given they will have to guard BroLo who will pull them from the basket a whole lot.
Suns vs Rockets
18.5 point spread!!! AHAHAHAHAHAHAH.
Ok, so… i mean.. In single entry don’t go to any of the expensive plays, but make sure you have some shares of Harden if you MME. But my god this game should be over by the half. I don’t even know why the Rockets are playing everyone, except to just cement the win and then rest them. So, if I am going anywhere on Houston, I’m going cheap. That means House (3800), Rivers (3300) and anyone else at the bottom here that will get mop up duty. I would bet on Faried (4200) too, but I’m mess less sure they don’t also try to rest him.
On the Suns side, you have to go back to who you played a couple days ago - Jackson (6700), Crawford (4600) and Daniels (3900). If Holmes (6200) plays, he’s a little expensive but I still love him here. If he sits, I am all over Spalding (4300) again with some Bender (5000) as well. Otherwise, yuck. What an awful game.
Celtics vs Magic
This is one of those times when this is going to be a FANTASTIC real life basketball game but not one that we are going to love for DFS purposes. We are talking 2 defensive minded teams that have no problem keeping the pace down. That being said, the Magic are in MUST WIN mode, so we are going to be able to count on their starters getting all the run they can handle, giving them a bump in terms of that. So let’s look.
I assume Boston starts Horford at the 4 and Baynes at the 5 again, at which point I will be all over Vuc (9600). Horford (6600) would also be underpriced for the matchup against Gordon. But Vuc against Baynes isn’t really a contest, and Vuc should be well on his way to 50 DKP. I don’t know if that will be enough, though. I will also point out that the best place to attack the Celtics are through Morris and Tatum lately, so I would take the backup Magic players, like Ross (5700), who is going to see some Morris in the 2nd unit and some Tatum when he gets some SF run with the main unit.
Also, you can play the hell out of Kyrie (8700). The Magic are slow and great at D, sure. But Kyrie can put up 60 DKP any game, and, assuming the Celtics don’t want Orlando in the playoffs, they can do a lot to get rid of them tonight. Kyrie gets the best matchup out of everyone, by far, and he’s already the lead dog when it comes to usage anyway.
Wizards vs Knicks
Oh god this is awful as well. I mean as a game, not for fantasy. It’s like the opposite of the last game. Beal is seeing his minutes cut back, so we can ignore him. But almost everyone else in this game that is going to get minutes is viable. They are all cheap enough, they are all going against shitty defenders on a bad team. So Bryant (7600) has the toughest matchup, but it shouldn’t really matter given how much run he will get, and the fact he is a 2x2 machine. Ditto Mitch Rob (7100) who will also get 30 or so minutes of run, and has been crushing his price with his production. I imagine Hezonja (5600) gets the start again, and it is absolutely not chasing points to lock him in immediately tonight. I won’t play Dotson. I’ll have a hard time playing Kornet or Ellenson. But everyone else is fair game, even Jenkins (3500) and Garrett (3300), who got serious minutes and just didn’t do anything with them last time. Well the Wizards are a different team and you can take a chance on them again.
Clippers vs Warriors
Another game that really shouldn’t stay close. That doesn’t mean we can’t find some good plays here. First - the best ways to attack the Clippers are with Cs and Guards. So that means I am going to prioritize Cousins (6800) as one of the plays of the day at that price, followed by Klay (6300) who should be 1000 too much, and Curry (8900) who isn’t as underpriced as the other guys, but should still be more in this matchup. Even if this game blows out, Cousins and Klay should have no problem getting value, and you really should have them in your pool, and give them serious consideration for single entry, no matter how popular they wind up being
On the Clippers side, with Gallo likely out, I am going to take a chance on Montrezl (5900) at that price, as well as LouWill (7000). If this game stays close, it will almost certainly be on the backs of these two. They are risky GPP plays, but Montrezl is cheap enough, and should get enough run, you can consider him regardless. Especially if JaMychal is also out again for the birth of his child.
Nuggets vs Blazers
With Denver having accepted their fate, they are resting their team today. No Jokic, No Millsap, No Muray. This means that Denver becomes one of the best spots today for value. We should pretty much lock in Plumlee (4700) and Monte (4300). Honestly, there are very few plays that will be good as them, minus some of the value from ATL. Still, both these guys are gonna get 30+ minutes and will push for 10x themselves. I also think Beasley (3500) could be in line for a bunch of extra minutes and, seeing as I don’t think he’ll be chalky, you can go to him as a pivot to Monte. We should also expect to see Lyles (3100) get some serious run here, making him one of the top value plays on the slate. And we’ve all seen him go 10x when given the run.
On the Blazers side, with CJ coming back and this Denver team playing backups, I don’t really want to take a chance on anyone expensive. If I go anywhere, it will be to Collins (4000). That’s it. Everyone else is overpriced due to CJ having been out.
Pelicans vs Kings
This is a great game for the Kings for production. I think people are underestimating how solid this Kings team is. I mean they’re not going to win the title this season, but they are going to blow this game out and it shouldn’t really be too close. Still, the Pelicans are tops in pace and worst in Defense, so we should still play as many Kings as we want. Especially since Fox (6900) is the most expensive one. My favorite is Hield (6800), then Fox, then Bagley (6800). Then anyone else you want to play. Bjelica (4000) is a sneaky play with Giles out. But anyone you have the money to fit in should get value.
On the Pels side, Randle (8700) is back to getting 38 minutes in close games. That’s a guaranteed 50 DKP. At that price, I’ll take it all day. Also, **Elf (7000) is in one of the better spots against the Kings guard D. While I don’t expect a 3x2, necessarily, if this game stays close, I do expect him to get you 40-50 DKP. Also, don’t sleep on Ian Clark (4900) who I’ve been talking about for a couple weeks now. He’s getting the minutes, and now his shot is finally falling..
Jazz vs Lakers
Another game that has no business staying close, so, even though the injury report is expansive, I still expect this game doesn’t stay close. Still, we have to realize the Jazz don’t really rest starters during blowouts. So that means we should be all in on Donovan (8600), who will get most of the PG duty and should be locked into 50+ DKP, especially against a Lakers team that has been worst against PG in the last month plus. The Lakers are also awful against C, but Gobert (9000) is mighty expensive. I still think you can go there, but I’m worried about how much they’ll even need him. If Jae (4600) plays, you should lock him in. Ingles (6800) will get some backup PG run, which increases his projection. Royce (3500) will get 35 minutes, but it’s hard to trust his production. Sefolosha (3500), though, is a super sneaky play. He is one of my top punts of the day, and I expect him to get you 10x today.
On the Lakers side, the only real place to attack the Jazz is at Center, so my favorite play would be JaVale (6800). Everyone else is just the right price for this matchup.
Chalk Talk
Let’s start this off by saying that “ownership projections” are, at best, educated guesses. They are often wrong by double digits. They can be used as a guide, but only as one person’s opinion on what it will look like. IF YOU THINK SOMEONE WILL BE HIGHER OR LESS OWNED, THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH TRUSTING YOUR GUT
Highest Owned Plays
Cousins (25%)
Fox (25%)
Mitch Rob (24.5%)
Vuc (23.7%)
Gobert (22.3%)
Lillard (22%)
Kyrie (22%)
Curry (21.8%)
Donovan (21.5%)
Durant (21.2%)
Most Surprising Ownership Projections
Ross (2.5%)
CJ (2.9%)
Wood (3.8%)
Bembry (3.5%)
LouWill (5.2%)
Bagley (5.7%)
Hezonja (5.2%)
Montrezl (6.4%)
Julius (9.6%)
High, but still too low - The following people still have between 10-15% ownership, and are in great spots tonight. I wouldn’t say no one is on them, but there are certainly low enough to help you gain the upper hand tonight:
JaMychal (12.9%)
Harden (14.4%)
Barton (14.5%)
Monte (15.5%)
Low Priced Punts currently projected to get 5x value - With Name (Price - Projected Score)
Today, punt means 4000 and under.
EARLY SLATE
Dirk
Poeltl
Mejri
Broekhoff
Knight
Devin Harris
Graham
Bertans
Monk
Mills
Galloway
Kennard
**MAIN SLATE*
Lyles (3100 - 26.1DKP)
Daniels (3900 - 26.4DKP)
Royce (3500 - 23.3DKP)
Bazemore (3900 - 26DKP)
Gary Harris (4000 - 26.6DKP)
DJ Wilson (3900 - 25.1DKP)
Sefo (3500 - 22DKP)
Ilyasova (3500 - 21.4DKP)
Hernangomez (3000 - 18.3DKP)
Rivers (3300 - 20.1DKP)
Bjelica (4000 - 23.7DKP)
Davis (3300 - 19.5DKP)
Thomas (3000 - 17.6DKP)
Okafor (4000 - 23.4DKP)
Shamet (3900 - 22.4DKP)
Hill (3300 - 18.9DKP)
Muscala (3600 - 20.5DKP)
Green (3200 - 17.8DKP)
Niang (3300 - 18DKP)
Temple (3900 - 21.3DKP)
Melton (3700 - 19.9DKP)
Craig (3600 - 19.3DKP)
Tucker (3700 - 19.7DKP)
Lance Thomas (3200 - 16.5DKP)
Alright! That’s it for today! I hope I laid it out well enough that you can make decisions when the final news breaks. Best of luck everyone!!!
submitted by bathrobeDFS to dfsports [link] [comments]

What does "plus" and "minus" mean as a sports betting term?. Odds expressed in terms of money, with $100 being the standard. If the odds are minus (–), then that amount of money must be wagered When betting on the moneyline, the favorite will always have a negative symbol in front of the number and the underdog will always have a plus sign in front of it (an example is -150 favorite or +150 for the underdog). How To Read The Point Spreads. Next, we come to what may be the most common type of sports betting odds, which is the point spread. The biggest difference between making the kind of casual bets mentioned above and placing wagers with online sportsbooks or at brick-and-mortar bookshops is the use of sports betting lines. Casual wagers usually involve each person in the bet picking one team to win, then wagering an equal amount, say $20 or $30. With the new betting line, the bettor is now at an advantage; but the payouts will become lower. Head-to-Head Bet A head-to-head bet is used in major sports events where it is difficult to wager on one winner because of a large field, like golf and Formula One racing. Over the past few months, we’ve posted quite a few articles on sports betting. We posted three guides to cover the basics on handicapping baseball, basketball and football, but these didn’t nearly cover everything a beginner would need to know.We’ve also posted articles that cover basic terms, as well as other assorted betting tips.. But we realized that, to some bettors, the number of

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