Every week Kevin Smith will preview the New York Knicks upcoming schedule from a fantasy perspective and take a quick look around the NBA. Kevin writes as Dime Magazine’s Fantasy Doctor. For more extensive fantasy basketball advice, click here.
KNICKS SCHEDULE ANALYSIS
Tuesday vs. Washington
Despite their lackluster record, the Wizards allow an average of 95.1 points per game, tying the Miami Heat for 6th in the NBA.
Thursday at Chicago
The Bulls average a league worst 92.8 points per game. In three games against the Knicks they are averaging 103.6 points.
Friday at Cleveland
Kyrie Irving is averaging 31.5 points in two games against the Knicks this season.
Sunday vs. Indiana
The Pacers are a game under .500 on the road (19-20), and with this game being at The Garden, it’s quite possible your Pacers could struggle.
STAT OF THE WEEK – 32.4
In 10 games since returning from injury, Melo is averaging 32.4 points per game. Incredibly, I think that pace is sustainable for him while Amar’e Stoudemire is out. His April average of 43.7 points per game is other worldly.
Wilson Chandler (55 percent owned in Y!, 34 in ESPN)
Danilo Gallinari’s season ending injury came as quite a blow to the Nuggets, but fantasy owners can easily swap Gallo for Chandler and not miss a beat. He plays the same exact role as the Italian, starting at the three with the capability of sliding to the four if Denver wants to play small, and is probably better defensively. Chandler started and played almost 30 minutes on Saturday night, dropping in 21 points with six rebounds, three assists, three treys, and a steal. I know losing Gallo hurts, but Chandler isn’t a bad consolation prize.
Corey Brewer (27 percent owned in Y!, 31 percent in ESPN)
If Wilson Chandler is the consolation prize to Danilo Gallinari, then Brewer is the runner up to Chandler. Expect Brewer to see an uptick in minutes, and although his fantasy game is predicated mostly on steals, his game is much more well rounded than it used to be. In three April games so far, Brewer is putting up 19.7 points 2.3 rebound 2.0 assists 1.7 treys 1.3 steals and 0.3 blocks while shooting 45 percent from the field and 86 percent from the free throw line. He makes for a better play in rotisserie leagues, but is useful in any format, making him a great add down the stretch of your fantasy playoffs.
Beno Udrih (27 percent owned in Y!, 34 percent in ESPN)
Surprise! A member of the Orlando Magic has made it to the pickups list for the 1000th time this fantasy season. Jameer Nelson’s injury has opened up the door for Udrih, who’s no stranger to the fantasy game. Udrih helped bring fantasy teams to the championship when Tyreke Evans went down in Sacramento late in the season a few years ago, and he’s looking to do it again. Over the last five games, he’s averaging 17.6 points 4.0 rebounds 8.4 rebounds 2.2 treys and 1.6 steals. I can’t imagine the Magic would rush Nelson back, meaning Udrih’s job should be relatively safe for the rest of the year.
Brandan Wright (23 percent owned in Y!, 18 percent in ESPN)
I usually advise people to stay away from players like Wright, who we’ve been waiting on to fulfill their full potential for over five years, but he’s been solid of late and deserves an add in deeper leagues. Over his last four games Wright is averaging 14.8 points 7.0 rebounds 0.5 steals and 1.8 blocks. There might be options with higher upside out there, but as a last resort, I can’t knock anyone picking him up.