Wednesday, January 30, 2013

How the Rudy Gay Trade Will Affect Your Fantasy Team

The Memphis Grizzlies, Toronto Raptors, and Detroit Pistons made some noise around the NBA Wednesday night as they all agreed on a blockbuster trade that will clearly effect these franchises going forward, not to mention the rest of your fantasy season!

The Grizzlies, Raptors and Pistons agreed to a six-player trade Wednesday that sent star swingman Rudy Gay to Toronto.
The Grizzlies, in the midst of a money-motivated makeover, acquired forward Ed Davis and veteran guard Jose Calderon in the deal that also sent backup center Hamed Haddadi to the Raptors.
Memphis then shipped Calderon to Detroit for Austin Daye and Tayshaun Prince.The Grizzlies also received a 2013 second-round pick from Toronto as part of the deal.  ESPN
We'll start with the center piece Rudy Gay. Gay's fantasy value goes sky high, as now he'll be the leader of the offense in Toronto. Right now Gay is averaging 17.2 points, 2.6 assists, and 5.9 rebounds. Yes Gay was leading the Grizzlies in scoring, but he had to share the ball with Zach Randolph (15.8 points), Marc Gasol (13.7 points), and Mike Conley (13 points).  Going to the Raptors, Gay will be the main guy alongside DeMar DeRozan who is averaging 17.3 points this year.  With Ed Davis and Jose Calderon off the team Kyle Lowry is the only other healthy option to score for the Raptors, as Andrea Bargnani has yet to return from injury. I'll be shocked if Gay doesn't average 20+ points the rest of the season.

A lot of people think DeMar DeRozan loses fantasy value with this trade, but I think playing alongside Rudy Gay will only improve his game.  DeRozan is a very athletic player just like Rudy Gay and he can learn a lot from Gay. I expect DeRozan to stay right around 17 points for the season but I see his 2.2 assists to go up. Jose Calderon was dishing out 10+ assists pretty much on a nightly basis so with Kyle Lowry the main PG on the roster, I expect the Raptors to spread the ball around which will result in a higher assist total for DeRozan who now has a teammate who can score 20 points a night.

The Grizzlies lose their leading scorer but they acquired 23 year old big man Ed Davis. Ed Davis who had been starting with the Raptors will certainly return to the bench as the Grizzlies already have Marc Gasol at center and Zach Randolph at power forward.  He's been seeing around 33 minutes over the last month, but that number will be lowered by about 10 minutes.  Davis owners will certainly take a hit in this trade, as with limited minutes he won't be taking 10+ shots anymore and he'll also be coming off the bench alongside Darrell Arthur who was the last big men left off the bench after sending Marreese Speights to Cleveland.

Taking Rudy Gay's spot in the Grizzlies starting lineup will be Tayshaun Prince. Prince, who is a NBA Champion, played the last 10 seasons with the Pistons and will go from one of the worst NBA teams to arguably a top 5 team. Prince does a little bit of everything and will be a perfect fit in Memphis. It's hard to think that Prince's fantasy value can take a big blow as he's going to a team where they traded the leading scoring and a guy who plays his position.  Expect Prince to keep his 12 points, 4.5 rebounds and 2.5 assists pace the rest of the way. However I'm not sure if he can maintain a 43% from 3pt the rest of the season as that's nearly 10% higher than he's shot in the past 3 years.

It's going to be interesting in Detroit to see how they manage Jose Calderon and Brandon Knight. There is no doubt in my mind that Calderon will turn Knight into a better PG as time goes on as Calderon is a great leader on the court and can mentor Knight who is only 20 years old.  I believe Knight will keep his job as the starting PG and Calderon will take a seat on the bench. However I do think Calderon will still get a lot of playing time. He's a quarterback on the basketball court and can really help create shots for an awful Pistons basketball team.  When Calderon is on the court, I also see Knight moving over to shooting guard as he's only averaging 4 assists a game anyways. As a Brandon Knight fantasy owner your probably going to take a slight loss at assists but he'll probably take more jumpers and have less turnovers as Calderon will control the ball.  Calderon fantasy value won't take much of a hit either as he'll still get plenty of playing time even if he does come off the bench and when he's on the court he'll rack up the assists no matter who he is playing with. Still expect around 10 points a night from him as well.

Hamed Haddadi is expect to be waived and I don't expect Austin Daye to get much playing time in Memphis.
 




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