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Fantasy Basketball: Bulls’ Mike Dunleavy has a golden chance to shine


Mike Dunleavy

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Since Luol Deng was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for Andrew Bynum‘s contract, Mike Dunleavy has started all 10 games for the Chicago Bulls.

In today’s edition of “All Wired Up”, I’ll delve into the fantasy strengths of potential waiver wire gold like Dunleavy and the Spurs’ Patty Mills for deep league consideration.

» Mike Dunleavy, SG/SF, Chicago Bulls (10.0 percent owned on ESPN.com) 

17 points (6-14  FG, 3-3  FT), 2 three-pointers, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 0 blocks, 1 turnover vs Clippers

Dunleavy is a player who gets very little love in the fantasy world.  He finished both of the last two seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks ranked within the top 130, but I highly doubt he was routinely owned in that time frame.

This season, he is currently sitting on a rank of 103, according to Basketball Monster.com.  That is obviously good enough to be owned in basically 100 percent of leagues, but here he is, languishing at 10 percent and somehow has dropped 3.7 percent in the last week.

This is craziness.  Dunleavy is the starting small forward for the Bulls and will be for the remainder of the season (injuries excluded) and we all know how Tom Thibodeau loves to run his starters into the ground.  In his past four games alone, Dunleavy has averaged 14.5 points (on 50 percent shooting), 1.8 three-pointers, 2.5 assists and 1.5 steals, which are great numbers for a guy sitting on so many waiver wires.

He has dual position eligibility, hits the three ball and shoots a good field goal percentage — all qualities all fantasy owners should be able to appreciate.

» Patty Mills, PG, San Antonio Spurs (0.1 percent owned):

18 points (6-10 FG, 0-0 FT), 6 three-pointer, 2 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, 0 blocks, 2 turnovers vs. Hawks

This is a deep, deep league play right here.  Patty Mills is available almost everywhere and I think that that should change.  In his past three games Mills is averaging 15.7 points, 4.3 three-pointers, 3.7 assists and 1.7 steals, good for the 18th spot in Basketball Monster.com’s rankings.

One big caveat with these numbers is that in two of those games the Spurs won by in excess of 20 points.  That is where Mills gets his value.  Once the Spurs start blowing teams out, on come the reserves.  The reason that I think this makes Mills a guy to own in 14-team leagues and deeper is that the Spurs are that good, that there will be many more blowouts as the season progresses.

In January, the Spurs have won five games by double digits already, and in those games Mills is averaging 13.2 points, 3.2 three-pointers and 1.2 steals, along with decent rebounding and assist numbers.

Mills is of no real use in close games, barely being able to get 10 minutes, but in a deeper league, having a guy who will have ample opportunity to put up top 50 numbers in blowouts is great news.

Add him to your roster, but be prepared for the ups and the downs.  As the season winds down and the Spurs rest more players, his consistency should rise as will his output.



Tags: Chicago Bulls Fantasy Basketball Featured Mike Dunleavy Popular San Antonio Spurs