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News-Herald Assistant Sports Editor Kevin Kleps doesn’t just write headlines and stories. He also checks on his fantasy sports teams. A lot. See if the moves and news from the world of sports affect your fantasy teams.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Fantasy basketball: The Carmelo Anthony Chronicles

You're probably tired of hearing about the latest rumored trade destination for Carmelo Anthony.

You're not alone.

We've heard 'Melo is bound for the Nets. But he wanted to play for the Knicks.

Oh wait, the Lakers are interested, and they may or may not be willing to give up Andrew Bynum and his ancient knees.

To change it up, let's look at the Anthony situation from a fantasy perspective for the few of us out there who enjoy fake hoops almost as much as the real thing.

Anthony has never been a truly elite fantasy player because he does only two things very well -- score and make free throws. He doesn't shoot for a high percentage (44.4 this season, 45.8 for his career), he doesn't rebound that well (his 7.7 average this season is 1.4 better than his career norm) and he doesn't make a lot of 3-pointers (0.7 per game for his career).

If you own Anthony, you need him to average 25 points per game and get to the free-throw line nine or 10 times per contest. Anthony's average of 24.7 points this season matches his career norm, but is 3.5 below the 28.2 he posted last season.

If he's traded to the Knicks, who have four players averaging more than 16 points per game, Anthony probably wouldn't outscore Amare Stoudemire (26.2), and his scoring average in New York might not exceed its current figure.

If Anthony is traded to the Lakers, can you see him averaging more than 21 or 22 points per game on a team with Kobe Bryant (25.4 ppg) and Pau Gasol (18.7)? Me neither.

The solution: Stay in Denver, Carmelo.

Then we can stop hearing about it. And you can maintain your fantasy value.

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