Basketball Surprise Third Team has been up and running for a bit, which
means it must be time to announce the players who made the second team. Once
again, Kevin Durant and Kobe Bryant are not included. You knew what you were
getting when you drafted them. As well as they played this year, Kevin Garnett
and Tim Duncan did not qualify either narrowly missing the cut. Here are the
players that made the All-Fantasy Basketball Surprise Second Team.
Batum averaged almost 14 points per game
Point Guard - Jose Calderon, Toronto Raptors
Calderon is one of those players that will give you a little of everything.
Of point guard eligible players, he averaged 8.8 assists per game ranking him
fourth among the NBA assist leaders in 2012. He also averaged three rebounds
and nearly a steal per contest. Calderon had a great year shooting the ball,
as he shot over 45 percent from the floor, 37 percent from three-point range
and over 88 percent from the free throw line. Calderon scored 10.5 points per
Even though a couple of injuries plagued his year a bit, Calderon is still
a player you should target in the early-to-middle rounds of your drafts next
season. You do not need to reach as early on a player like Rajon Rondo when
you can get a similarly skilled player who fills up the stats five rounds later.
Shooting Guard - Nicolas Batum, Portland Trail Blazers
Since Wesley Matthews made our All
Fantasy Basketball Third Team, I have decided to include the second part
of the Brandon Roy relief in Portland: Batum. Averaging nearly 14 points per
game, Batum also averaged a steal and a block per game. The only other shooting
guard eligible player that averaged one block and one steal per game who played
at least 10 games this season was Dwayne Wade.
Batum shot the ball very well this season; hitting 45 percent from the field,
nearly 40 percent from beyond the arc and over 83 percent from the free throw
line. Batum is a very aggressive player as he also grabbed over four rebounds
per game. Batum is a sleeper that you will be able to grab toward the latter
part of your draft. He might be playing in a new place next season, but the
stats don't lie and he is a valuable mid-draft commodity.
Small Forward - Paul George, Indiana Pacers
George is on this list not only for averaging 1.6 steals per game, ranking
him fifth among small forward eligible players, but he is also very durable.
George played in all 66 games this season, averaging 12 points and 5.6 rebounds
per game. He had five double-digit rebound efforts in 2012, including one game
in which he grabbed 16 rebounds! Just like Calderon and Batum, George had a
great year shooting the ball. He hit 44 percent from the field, 80 percent from
the line and 38.5 percent from the three-point line. With the small forward
position being one of the more scarce positions in fantasy basketball, you should
look to draft George towards the middle part of your draft as he will give your
team depth that is needed to win.
Power Forward - Kris Humphries, New Jersey Nets
Yes, one of the most hated athletes nationwide does deserve a spot on this
team. If averaging 13.8 points per game and 11 rebounds per game is not enough
to convince you, Humphries was one of the top-five rebounders in the league
in 2012. Even though he got booed everywhere he played, Humphries still manage
to record 1.2 blocks per game. With the media against him, he still recorded
29 double-doubles on the season. Knowing that Kim Kardashian did not take away
his ability to play basketball, I would look to draft Humphries towards the
middle of your drafts. Since the break-up with Kim proved to help his cause
and improve his stats from the 2011 season, if he has dated and broken up with
another celebrity by October, you might want to look to draft him even earlier.
Center - Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City Thunder
In 2012 there were six center eligible players that averaged two or more blocks
per game. Ibaka led the NBA in 2012 by averaging 3.7 blocks per game, which
is 1.5 blocks more than JaVale McGee, who ranked second to him. Ibaka also helped
out on a shooting percentage front by shooting 53.5 percent from the field.
For the second straight year, Ibaka averaged 7.5 rebounds per game. His position
eligibility at both power forward and center also made him a bit more valuable.
Next season Ibaka will be targeted earlier, so make sure you have a solid guard
and heavy rebounder before taking a chance on Ibaka.
About Justin "Fensty" Fensterman
Fensterman covers fantasy basketball for KFFL and joined the team in 2012. He is a Sports Radio Producer on SiriusXM's Fantasy Sports Radio channel, the first channel dedicated solely to fantasy sports. An avid fantasy basketball player, Fensty's biggest accomplishment in the fantasy sports world was in 2004 when he had an undefeated season in a Yahoo! Sports Fantasy NBA league and was ranked in the top 30 among all players in the world.
A native from Oyster Bay, NY, Fensty left New York to study Broadcast Journalism at American University in Washington D.C. in 2005. Fensty has previously worked for MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM, NBC Sports, Fox Sports, MTV and News 12: Long Island.
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