Fantasy basketball - DeMar DeRozan thriving next to Zach LaV
เวลา:2022-12-23

How DeMar DeRozan found his level playing next to Zach LaVine

Commanders Young will play Saturday vs. 49ers

Former Broncos RB Hillman dies of cancer at 31

House passes Team USA Act equal pay bill

Ravens again rule out Jackson; Huntley to start

Eagles Hurts out; Minshew to start vs. Cowboys

YouTube nabs NFLs Sunday Ticket for $14B+

Laporta: Football needs ESL to stop Prem power

Dual-threat star Hunter follows Deion to Colorado

NFL Week 16 playoff picture and clinching scenarios: How the Ravens and Giants can lock in a spot

Who was snubbed from the Pro Bowl rosters? Our panel picks the biggest surprises

Pro Bowl selections for all 32 teams: Full AFC, NFC rosters

National signing day recap: New signees, who flipped and best classes

The best and worst Christmas sweaters from top soccer clubs

How the Jets brightened their future in 41 minutes by drafting Sauce Gardner, Garrett Wilson

NFC East showdown: Do Eagles or Cowboys have the better roster?

January transfer window preview: Gakpo, Ramos to Man United?

LIVE Transfer Talk: Arsenal interested in Shakhtar star Mudryk

Two Blackhawks fans turn arena entertainment into a Christmas movie

Mens college basketball fantasy draft: Who got Zach Edey?

Aliyah Boston, Caitlin Clark, Azzi Fudd and the 25 best players in womens college basketball

Deions first signing day at Colorado: The recruits and transfers starting a new era

NBA Christmas Day games: Schedule, storylines, how to watch/stream all five games

Arsenals tricky schedule, Barcelona derby, Man City vs. Chelsea: Must-see games over the holidays

World Cup best and worst: Memorable Messi and Morocco; Infantinos rant and Salt Baes cameo

The World Cup belongs to Lionel Messi

Hall of Fame running backs impact on NFL history, Pittsburgh Steelers fans was felt until his final day

UFC 2022 awards: What were the best moments of the year?

Boxing pound-for-pound rankings: Is Inoue closing in on Crawford for No. 1?

Basketball Hall of Fame: Class of 2023 nominees, schedule and more

NBA Power Rankings: Can KD carry Brooklyn into the top five?

When are others going to be held accountable?: Allegations of Suns misconduct extend beyond Robert Sarver

Fantasy 30: Kevin Durants incredible shooting efficiency and other NBA notes

Fantasy basketball: DeMar DeRozan thriving next to Zach LaVine

DeMar DeRozan of the Chicago Bulls.

In his first season with the Bulls,DeMar DeRozanturned in arguably the best season of his career. He averaged a personal best of 27.9 PPG, was named All-NBA Second Team, and finished in the top-10 in the MVP voting.

Could he replicate that success this season, his 14th, at age 33?

Before the season, I projected that answer to be yes. I projected DeRozan to average 27.1 PPG on 50.0 FG% and 87.0 FT%, 5.1 RPG and 5.0 APG.

In his first two games, he burst out as though he planned to far exceed expectations, with back-to-back 30-point efforts and averages of 34.5 PPG, 7.5 APG and 6.0 RPG.

Then,Zach LaVinemade his season debut.

In the next 12 games, DeRozans numbers would plummet to 22.1 PPG (49.7 FFG%, 91.4 FT%), 3.6 RPG and 3.7 APG. DeRozan would score 20 or fewer points in seven of those 12 games, including two single-digit efforts with nine points against the Hornets on November 2 and nine points against the Raptors on November 7.

Lets unpack this a bit. LaVine had missed the first two games of the season as he continued to recover from knee surgery earlier in the year, and in his absence DeRozan had popped. But, when LaVine returned, there was a negative correlation between LaVines presence and DeRozans declining production:

The pattern seemed clear and went beyond just points. If you look at the seven aforementioned games in that stretch where DeRozan scored 20 or fewer points, youd find that LaVine averaged 23.5 PPG and 4.8 APG in the games he played versus DeRozans 14.9 PPG and 3.7 APG. In the other five games in that stretch, where DeRozan averaged 32.2 PPG and 3.6 APG, LaVine was at 19.5 PPG and 3.0 APG in the games he played.

So, in the first 12 games after LeVine debuted, when LaVine was high usage, DeRozans numbers went into the tank. When LaVine was relatively low usage, DeRozan shined.

But, if DeRozan struggles when LaVine plays well...why wasnt this the case last season?

Last season, DeRozans crowning glory, had included a high-usage LaVine that had averaged 24.4 PPG on 47.6 FG%, with 4.5 APG. If DeRozan could thrive with high-usage LaVine last season, why couldnt he this season?

FREE TO PLAY. $10,000 in prizes available! Who will you pick to win?Make Your Picks

The answer may lie, in part, beyond LaVine and instead with the rest of the backcourt. Last season, the point guard to start the campaign wasLonzo Ball. Ball is as close to a 3-and-D point guard as exists, a pass-first and pass-second player that took about 70% of his shots as spot-up 3-pointers created off ball movement. The second main point guard to start the season wasAlex Caruso, another low usage guard that focused on defense. Ball and Caruso both got injured and missed half of last season, but when they were out, rookieAyo Dosunmubecame the starter and continued their low-usage ways. If anything, DeRozan and LaVine took on a larger role as offense initiators.

Fast-forward to the start of this season, and closer examination shows the difference in that other guard spot. With Ball still out, Dosunmu was starting with newly acquiredGoran Dragictaking on a larger role as well. In the 12 games weve been examining, Dosunmu averaged 11.6 PPG and 3.3 APG in 29.7 MPG, while Dragic averaged 10.2 PPG and 3.6 APG in 18.9 MPG. Thus, for every 48 or so minutes, the Bulls point guard was averaging almost 23 points and 7 assists per game during that stretch. That is much more production at much higher usage than the position was giving last season, and effectively precluded DeRozan being able to thrive in games where LaVine approached his normal usage level.

However, right around November 16, the Bulls seemed to reorganize, as Dosunmu took a step back (8.7 PPG, 2.3 APG since Nov. 16), and Dragic fell almost completely out of the offense (3.5 PPG, 2.3 APG in 13.5 MPG since Nov. 16). Alex Caruso has taken on a larger role, up to 26.0 MPG, 8.7 PPG and 3.1 APG (from 4.3 PPG, 4.0 APG in 12 games before).

Suddenly, Caruso and Dosunmu are effectively reprising the point guard role from last season. And, like clockwork, DeRozan has started consistently producing even with LaVine playing every game.

Roundtable: Are Brook Lopez, Bol Bol and Lauri Markkanen here to stay?

Why the stage is set for LaMelo Ball to thrive upon his return to the court

Fantasy 30: Bennedict Mathurin, Khris Middleton and other NBA notes

In the seven games since November 16, DeRozan has averaged 31.1 PPG (53.5 FG%, 86.3 FT%) and 5.3 APG. He has scored at least 26 points in every game. There is still some correlation with LaVines output, but starting at a much higher level. LaVine has only two games under 20 points during that stretch, a 4-point effort against the Magic and an 18-point game against the Bucks, and DeRozan turned in his two highest scoring efforts with 41 and 36 points, respectively. But, conversely, even in the two games LaVine has scored 25 or more, DeRozan has still popped for 28 and 7 assists, and 30 points and 6 assists, respectively. With a low-usage, defensive-minded point guard slot that cedes the playmaking and offense creation to DeRozan and LaVine, their two best players are free to thrive.

This is excellent news for the fantasy basketball prospects of both DeRozan and LaVine, but particularly DeRozan. LaVines output still depends more on his health and ability to finish than his deployment, with his 40.7% shooting from the field keeping his scoring averages low despite his 17.8 FGA/G this season. DeRozan, though, is showing that he can absolutely replicate, if not improve upon, the career numbers he posted a season ago. If the Bulls put the ball in his hands, he has consistent 30-point/5-assist capability, with excellent shooting percentages on high volume to help in categories leagues. DeRozan could flirt with late-first round value in some league formats, and has easy top-20 expectation in pretty much every league.

So, if you can trade for him at any value less than that, or if you are still planning to draft your league in upcoming weeks, keep in mind that DeRozan has the kind of production-vs-reputation profile that can win you fantasy hoops leagues.