As we step into December, let’s look at some stats from the month of November. Last month, Brook Lopez was a top 30 player on ESPN basic (53% owned), and Evan Fournier was top 40 (52.9% owned). Tomas Satoransky (11.4% owned), Robert Covington (58% owned), and Richaun Holmes (43.9%) were top 50. The Finnisher, Lauri Markkanen, was outside the top 125 for the month. His average ADP on ESPN was top 60.
Here are some other numbers:
- Joel Embiid averaged less points than Brandon Ingram.
- Ten players averaged 8+ 3PA per game: JJ Redick (8.2 3PA), Kemba Walker (8.6 3PA), Devonte’ Graham (8.7), Karl-Anthony Towns (9.0), Dame Lillard (9.2), Trae Young (9.3), Luka Doncic (9.6), Paul George (9.7), Buddy Hield (10.5), and James Harden (14.1 3PA per game). Only Redick and the Big KAT have a 40+ 3PT%, too (Redick was 48.6 3PT%, get real).
- Top three in dimes in November: LeBron James (11.4 APG), Luka Doncic (10.4 APG), and Trae Young (8.7 APG). James’ +/- rating for the month was 10.4; Trae’s was -10.6.
- 14 players averaged 24+ PPG (at least nine games played, in ascending order): Pascal Siakam (24.0 PPG), Devin Booker, Anthony Davis, Brandon Ingram, Donovan Mitchell, Karl-Anthony Towns, LeBron James, Damian Lillard, Andrew Wiggins, Bradley Beal, Trae Young (28.9 PPG), Luka Doncic (32.4 PPG), Giannis Antetokounmpo (32.7 PPG), James Harden (39.5 PPG).
- 15 players averaged a traditional double-double (10+ PPG and 10+ RPG, in ascending order of boards): Tristan Thompson (10.0 RPG), Nikola Jokic, Jonas Valanciunas, Luka Doncic (Luka averaged a triple-double in November: 32.4 PPG, 10.3 RPG, 10.4 APG), Jarrett Allen, Bam Adebayo, Nikola Vucevic, Hassan Whiteside, Joel Embiid, Karl-Anthony Towns, Giannis, Domantas Sabonis, Rudy Gobert, Clint Capela, and Andre Drummond (16.2 PPG and 17.0 RPG).
- Jeff Teague (67% owned on ESPN basic), point guard for the Minnesota Timberwolves, averaged the 5th most APG in November, 8.4.
- Eight players averaged 1+ Steal Per Game and 1+ Block Per Game in November: Bam Adebayo, Willie Cauley-Stein (50% owned), Robert Covington, Giannis, Drum, Nerlens Noel (5% owned, 72nd on ESPN’s basic Player Rater for the season), Jonathan Isaac (17th PR for the season, lowest ownership in the top 20, 72.4%), and AD.
- Five Milwaukee Bucks were in the top 12 in +/- for the month of November: Giannis, Brook Lopez, Donte DiVincenzo, Wesley Matthews, and Eric Bledsoe. The Giannis Effect.
- Collin Sexton averaged the 30th most shots per game (FGA), 16.1 FGA per game. Sexton’s tied for 27th in total FGA on the season with the Big KAT, Karl-Anthony Towns. If someone’s taking as many shots as KAT, they should probably be owned more than 37%.
- Spencer Dinwiddie went to the line as much as Russell Westbrook, 6.1 FTA per game. Dinwiddie hasn’t missed Kyrie, in terms of fantasy: he averaged 20 and 6 in November, with Kyrie missing multiple games.
- Trae Young averaged 21+ drives to the basket per game in November. NO ONE ELSE in the NBA averaged even 20. Malcolm Brogdon was 11th in drives per game in November, 16.0, and he averaged 56% on shots on those drives. NOT BAD. That’s basically what Dame does on drives. The Bucks were batty to let Brogdon leave.
- 16 players averaged five or more catch-and-shoot 3PA in November. Bryn Forbes on the Spurs (currently 20th in team 3PT%) took 5.1 per game and hit 33.3% of them. Davis Bertans on the Wizards (6th in 3PT% as a team on the season, 4th best team Offensive Rating) averaged 6.8 catch-and-shoot 3PA per game with a 40.9 3PT%. Bertans was on the Spurs last season; they got rid of him because they thought they were signing Marcus Morris, Sr.; instead, Morris backed out and signed with the Knicks, and the Spurs were left with neither player. Bertans is EXACTLY who the Spurs need on their team right now. He’s taken the 14th most 3PA total on the season (136), and JJ Redick’s attempted 140; they are the only two players in the top 14 with a 3PT% over 43 (Bertans is 45.6 3PT% and Redick is 47.1 3PT% on the year).
- Only three players posted up twice a quarter on average in November: LaMarcus Aldridge (9.4 postups per game), AD (10.1), and, Joel Embiid (10.7). Embiid’s averaging 3.9 3PA per game, and he has a 30.6 3PT% on the season. 122 players are averaging 3.9 3PA per game this year (out of all players who’ve played in at least 9 games this season), and Embiid’s 30.6 3PT% ranks 104th out of those 122. He’s shooting 50% on 2-point field goals, and he’s shooting 62.5 FG% close to the basket. I understand that Embiid stretching the floor allows Ben Simmons room to operate, but damn man, at some point you just have to feed the beast, and let Embiid dominate down low.
- The Sacramento Kings played with the lowest pace during November, the only team to average under 97 possessions per game. They went 8-5, so you can’t criticize them, but that still seems mighty strange to me. They’ve been without De’Aaron Fox, so we’ll see how fast they are when he returns.
- The Utah Jazz were 13th in pace in November! Alright, let’s hear it for the 21st Century Jazz! The Bulls were 7th in pace, and went 5-10 in November, which means they were bad, swiftly. There’s definitely fantasy potential on the Bulls, but their complete lack of defense-brain is bewildering, and it’s tough to gauge how the front office will react if the Bulls keep losing. I assume that Zach LaVine’s fantasy value will decrease if he’s traded to a contender, but would you really want to sell high on him when he could be the best good player on a bad team this NBA year?
- The Knicks continue to look worse than the pessimists thought they would. They went 3-11 in November, and were second slowest in pace. Boring and bad and slow is not what the Mecca wants. At least run!...Oh yeah, the entire team is power forwards.
- The Golden State Warriors have the league’s best team free throw percentage. The Lakers are 21st. The Knicks are last (67.5 FT% as a team, no other team is beneath 71 FT%).
- Giannis, LeBron, and Wiggins are the worst free throw shooters in the top 20 of PPG. Wiggins is the only one of them hitting 70+% of his free throws. Giannis is under 60% (!). All three were top 25 in FTA per game in November, and they still scored 20+ PPG.
- Jimmy Butler had 80 total assists in November, good for 22nd overall, and more than Westbrook, Joker, DJ Augustin, Kemba Walker, and Mike Conley. Maybe Jimmy Buckets is just better without a costar?
- TJ Warren and Tomas Satoransky have quietly been top 50 players in November. Warren averaged 18+ PPG on 52+ FG% (!) last month, and Sato averaged 10+ PPG on 50 FG%, with 5+ APG, 3+ RPG, 1.5 SPG, 46 3PT% on 3+ 3PA per game. Satoransky is 11% owned, and he’s tied for 59th on the Player Rater for the season with Kyrie Irving. If Tomas Satoransky is available in your league, please please please pick him up.
(All numbers courtesy of ESPN.com, NBA.com, and Basketball-Reference.com. Thank you!)