Unfortunately Charlotte, Washington, Sacramento and Portland may be some of the worst teams in reality this season, but when it comes to fantasy those same low-win clubs may be the best in holding unexpected winning value for your team down the stretch.
With many of the aforementioned losing franchises flooded with young, hungry and unproven talent; the atmosphere is ripe for an unpredictable smorgasbord of fantasy goodies with the current NBA season now deep into itsâ€™ third and final stage.
Remarkably you may find yourself at seasonsâ€™ end a winner based on your ability to find nuggets of fantasy gold in losers.
Not to sound so harsh; but losing teams hold tremendous winning value, especially late in the season.
Weâ€™ll take a quick look at the four clubs mentioned above here, however almost every bottom-feeding team from the Golden State Warriors to the Cleveland Cavaliers this late in the game has some players worthy of short-term run or spot duty needed to get you over the hump and put you in position to win your fantasy league.
Charlotte Bobcats (7-37, 15th place Eastern Conference)
The Bobcats, if the ping-pong balls go the way theyâ€™re supposed to come June, should have a true fantasy stud in Anthony Davis next season, but for now they happen to hold the worst record in the Eastern Conference and the entire NBA for that matter.
With Boris Diaw recently bought out, Tyrus Thomas reliably inconsistent and Corey Maggette also not available with his routine wave of injuries, Charlotteâ€™s frontcourt is now rookie PF/C Bismack Biyomboâ€™s to monopolize.
Biyombo is more of a specialist averaging 9.3 rebounds and 2.3 blocks per game in the month of March, but since the healthy block-rebounding big is so hard to come by these days his value to your team cannot be understated.
And now with the end of the season approaching Charlotte will want to give him as much playing time as possible to gain valuable experience heading into next year.
Keep an eye out for some other young Bobcats as well down the stretch as Kemba Walker, Byron Mullins and Gerald Hendersonâ€™s numbers could all jump in the hopes of ending the season on as high a note as possible heading into the 2012-13 campaign.
Portland Trail Blazers (22-25, 12th place Western Conference)
Something interesting happened when Gerald Wallace and long-time Head Coach Nate McMillan were shipped out of town last week; the team actually began to look like what a regular team looks like.
Meaning, they had five starters with specific roles and a key cog off the bench in Jamal Crawford with another stated role. No more of this hodge-podge, make-shift lineup with way too many wings, a point guard and one LaMarcus Aldridge.
And although their record has produced mixed results in reality, in fantasy this new rotation has led to significant increases in production across the board.
Matthews, now getting consistent starterâ€™s minutes to match his starting two-guard title, has found his stroke from beyond the three-point line again knocking down an average of 3.6 per game over his last five contests.
In those contests he is also scoring 16.2 points per game while also racking up 2.4 steals and hauling down 4.2 rebounds.
Felton, spry with opportunity, is putting in 15.0 points, 6.6 assists and 2.0 steals per contest over the Blazers last five as he finally resembles the fantasy player we have all become accustomed to seeing over the years.
But itâ€™s not just the starters who are getting more reliable court time; Luke Babbitt, Nolan Smith and recently traded point-man Jonny Flynn are all finally getting a real chance to scuff their shiny clean sneaks against the polished hardwood.
The West is tough, so if the Blazers look too far out of the playoff picture here soon youâ€™ll want to keep an eye out for some of the seldom-used youngsters on their roster to get even more run.
Sacramento Kings (17-30, 14th place Western Conference)
The Kings apparently arenâ€™t interested in lying down. Donâ€™t let their subpar record fool you, thereâ€™s no quit in this young team. And thatâ€™s the exact thing you have to wisely look out for as every night becomes a must win now.
The hungrier these young teams are the better and Sacramentoâ€™s roster is filled with young and hungry NBAers trying their darndest to make a name for themselves.
The Kings recently let J.J. Hickson go which opened up a huge door for PF/C Jason Thompson.
Thompson has responded admirably by averaging 17.6 points and 13.6 rebounds over his last five while shooting a deft 65.5% from the field. An atrocious free-throw shooter to start the season, Thompson has even shot over 70% from the stripe in that same span with his increased opportunities.
Watch out for Thompson, Fredette and Hayes as the season winds down. The Kings are a prideful bunch and although Tyreke Evans, Marcus Thornton, DeMarcus Cousins and Isaiah Thomas are all surely picked up by now, this is a team youâ€™ll want to pay close attention to moving forward.
Washington Wizards (11-35, 14th place Eastern Conference)
Utter dysfunction has tattooed this team for far too long, but with the removal of JaVale McGee and Andray Blatche, the Wizards are sending a clear message about what types of players they want representing their franchise.
You could call these Randy Wittman guys because he appears to have the most to do with the teamsâ€™ much-needed change in culture and philosophy.
Very much a part of that change are a host of young players who will surely use the remainder of this season and the summer to become better pros.
Trevor Booker and Chris Singleton have taken over the starting power forward and small forward spots, respectively. Jordan Crawford now runs the two as D.C. waived goodbye to the inconsistent Nick Young and the Wizardsâ€™ second unit consists of a sharp-shooting vet in Roger Mason, a D-League call up, Edwin Ubiles, and two International talents in Jan Vesely and Kevin Seraphin.
Booker has been on the fantasy radar for a while now and is worth starting if you need rebounds, steals, blocks and field goal percentage.
But guys like Singleton and Seraphin are just now beginning to consistently give prospective fantasy owners a real taste of just what it is they do well on a nightly basis.
Singleton is a lanky 6-8 small forward capable of helping in the steals category if given ample time. Over his last three heâ€™s put in 3.0 steals per game in 33.0 minutes of action. Although Singletonâ€™s scoring can be erratic, he can be a potential help in threes, blocks and rebounds.
Kevin Seraphin, on the other hand, is a true low-post threat. He gets his points in the paint and off the glass. Over his last five games he is shooting 66.7% from the floor while averaging 6.8 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game.
Now these numbers are indicative of his filling the starting role for Nene until he was with the club, but with McGee gone and Blatche also now out indefinitely, Seraphin garners attention due to his immediate value for the Wizards upfront off the bench.
However, considering Neneâ€™s long and consistent injury history, youâ€™d be wise to monitor the situation carefully in D.C.
Seraphin is one of those rare big men who are not going to hurt you with horrible free throw shooting, but he will at the same time help you out with consistency in rebounds, blocks and field goal percentage.