This year’s trade deadline brought moves that once again had massive ramifications around the league. Trades cause value changes for players and it is important to know which players are the risers and fallers. These players should be targeted for their upside or traded to try to get back as much as possible.
Fantasy Basketball Risers and Fallers, Post NBA Trade Deadline
Riser: Wendell Carter Jr.
Out of all of the risers and fallers, nobody had a larger jump in value than Wendell Carter Jr. Prior to the deadline he had recently been demoted to the bench due to being outplayed by veteran Thaddeus Young. He was competing for touches with the likes of Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen, and Coby White. Now that he is headed to the Orlando Magic, he will have no competition for usage. He should instantly slot in as the starting center for the rebuilding Magic, and while his production so far hasn’t been very impressive in his two and a half seasons in the NBA, he should have every opportunity to flourish. He should be picked up everywhere off of waiver wires.
Riser: Kevin Porter Jr.
While not involved in a trade, Kevin Porter Jr. is somebody who was indirectly affected by one. The Victor Oladipo trade, which sent him to the Miami Heat for Kelly Olynyk, Avery Bradley, and a draft pick swap was one of the biggest moves of the deadline. While all of the discussion is about the Heat, the aftermath the of Houston Rockets is also important. Porter Jr.’s sample size when given starters minutes this season has been impressive (20.5 points per game, 7 assists per game) and this trade should allow him to start once again. He should be given every chance to develop as a young player on the tanking Rockets. Porter Jr. is somebody that will continue to break out over the second half of the season.
Riser: Terrence Ross
The aftermath of the Orlando Magic trading their best players (Nikola Vucevic, Aaron Gordon, Evan Fournier) has left the Magic with little talent. One thing is certain though, Terrence Ross is currently the most talented scoring threat on the team. While the 30-year-old Ross could certainly be held out of games due to the Magic trying to give their younger players more playing time, he still needs to be added. Somebody on this team needs to score points, and he is by far their best player currently.
Faller: Aaron Gordon
Aaron Gordon was traded to the Denver Nuggets in exchange for Gary Harris, R.J. Hampton, and a future first-round pick. Gordon is joining a loaded Denver team lead by MVP candidate Nikola Jokic. Gordon instantly slots in as the starting power forward, but his role in the offense is concerning. He will be the fourth scoring option (behind Jokic, Jamal Murray, and Michael Porter Jr.) and his usage will decline. Gordon’s supporting stats (6.6 rebounds per game and 4.2 assists per game) will decrease as well. While this is more of a “wait and see” situation, all signs point to a decline in production from Gordon.
Fantasy Basketball Fallers: Bulls and Heat role players
The result of the Nikola Vucevic and Victor Oladipo trades has caused two high usage players to go to teams with good role players. In Chicago, Vucevic is going to operate as the 1b to Zach Lavine’s 1a. Key role players such as Lauri Markkanen and Coby White will have their already decreasing value take an even bigger hit. Rookie Patrick Williams‘ chances of a late-season breakout are also now most likely gone. Thaddeus Young’s value will also take a hit as he will move back to the bench.
In Miami, Heat guards Tyler Herro, Goran Dragic, Kendrick Nunn, and Duncan Robinson will all lose value with the Oladipo trade. Oladipo will shift into the third option on offense behind Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. With the Heat having a deep roster, the expectation is that everybody not named Oladipo, Butler, and Adebayo will have to share the leftover usage. In other words, this is a situation to avoid barring injuries from happening.
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