Fantasy Basketball: Enes Kanter Trade Affects Several Players In Fantasy


The trade that had the biggest impact yesterday was the one that saw Enes Kanter get dealt to the Oklahoma City Thunder. That part of the trade looks like this:

I will bet the Thunder front office and fans alike are glad the Brook Lopez deal fell through! And with enough time to land possibly the gem of the deadline in Enes Kanter. The Thunder also helped fill out their bench in the part of this deal that sent Mr. October to the Pistons. Yes, I do realize that it is a different Reggie Jackson, but the basketball version has been the starter in October for the last two years while Russell Westbrook got healthy. Now we will see if he really can run an NBA team.

The earliest pick that the Thunder could give up comes in 2017 because of two other protected Oklahoma City first rounders floating around the NBA. However, by the time 2017 comes, all of the picks should be off the docket. They are all top 18 protected, meaning that as long as Oklahoma City finishes fourth in the East, these picks will be satisfied. I don’t see their record falling below that of the fourth place team in the East anytime soon.

Fantasy-wise, Enes Kanter moves from a decent fantasy situation to a great one. Steven Adams will be out for quite some time yet with a hand fracture, and the Thunder front office was leaning towards him not being their future center anyway. If they do soften that stance, or can’t pony up the money to re-sign Kanter in the offseason, they are no worse for the wear. Except for that missing first round pick.

Kanter is not much of a defensive player, so him playing beside a monster defender like Serge Ibaka will likely help his stats out. And the fact that he won’t be fighting Rudy Gobert for minutes is always a plus. If Kanter is available, he should be added in all leagues. He is the offensive threat at center that the Thunder have not had in the last several years. It may take them a week or so to learn how to use him, but when they do, he could have great numbers down the stretch. It might be worth floating a few offers around for Kanter in leagues where he is already owned.

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The Jazz could afford to wait on the first round pick because they gained a project in Grant Jerrett. He has only played 24 minutes all season, but that will likely change in Utah. He could see minutes backing up Derrick Favors or Gordon Hayward in Utah. That makes him an interesting option for you players in deeper leagues. He won’t be immediately relevant in leagues with under 16 teams, though that could change if he becomes the outside threat of the bench that the Jazz want.

The obvious winner for Utah in fantasy is Rudy Gobert. He is already owned in a larger percentage of leagues than Kanter because he has outplayed him for most of the past six weeks. If he is still available in your league, go grab him. You likely will be glad you did. He is a capable scorer, and a much better defensive player than Kanter.

The wild card is international center Tibor Pleiss. He is not some run-of-the-mill international player at the deadline who will never see an NBA court. He would have been stateside already if his buyout option wasn’t so strict. The restrictions ease this Summer, which prompted many to believe that the Thunder were going to buy him out in time to play in the Summer League. Now the Jazz will likely do that. This gives them two years to see what they have in Pleiss and Jarrett before they have to decide what to do with that first round pick. They really can’t be upset with the deal they got for Kanter. They got a couple of projects that they wanted, and a first round pick when the team might only have one hole to fill.

Kendrick Perkins is expected to be waived by Utah. that means that the teams that missed out on Amare Stoudemire (Rockets, Clippers, Cavaliers) will have one more chance to grab a veteran big man.

The other piece of this trade is here:

The Pistons got Reggie Jackson without giving up a first round pick, which is a lower price that most figured Jackson would go at. This looks like a great deal for Detroit, but is it? D.J. Augustin is a proven playmaker, and had been very good since Brandon Jennings went down with an Achilles injury. Jackson is a better defender, but he is not a great passer, and is not a good shooter.

The 2017 second rounder was sent to the Jazz by the Thunder to satisfy the rest of the Kanter deal.

Some have speculated that the rest of the Thunder made Jackson look good. We will find out if that is actually the case. Off guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope is mostly a shooter and defender, so that could help offset Jackson’s weaknesses. Having big men Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond up front won’t hurt either. If Jackson is still on your waiver wire, it is time to go get him. Even if he is not a great passer, he is capable and a solid scorer. He is more valuable in points leagues or category leagues that don’t count percentages. Keep that in mind if you offer for him in a trade.

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  • As for the Oklahoma City side of this, those of you that added Augustin in the wake of the Jennings injury can drop him in all but deep leagues. He does not have the size to play off like Jackson did for the Thunder. He is strictly a backup again.

    Kyle Singler goes from quasi starter to Kevin Durant‘s backup. He can be dropped in any league with 16 teams or less. He may be worth hanging on to in category leagues with 12 or more teams because he is a 40% shooter from beyond the arc.

    Steve Novak still will not be fantasy relevant for the Thunder either. He can’t back up the center position, and the team would rather play Mitch McGary behind Ibaka than Novak.

    Dion Waiters could see a slight uptick in value since he won’t have to fight Jackson for minutes at shooting guard. He could be worth adding in points leagues, but his poor shooting makes him difficult to own even in deep category leagues.

    Stay tuned to Fantasy CPR for the fantasy impact of the rest of the deadline deals!

    Next: Does Going To Boston Help Isaiah Thomas?

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