• Lots of insecure and vulnerable players out there who need to vent and talk in an open space, and I’m here to answer their questions. If you need to talk to someone, get a therapist. I can’t be there for everybody, only basketball stars who aren’t performing like they thought they would. These disappointing performances so far deserve some TLC. Unless we are talking about Josh Primo, who just got waived by the Spurs.

     

    The following are all real letters sent to me, privately, as a fantasy therapist. These should not be released to the public, and no one should read any of these. These were confidential, and should not be spread around the internet whatsoever. 

    *

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    A lot of people thought I was going to take a big leap this year. I was an MIP candidate, and an early-round selection in a lot of drafts, especially salary cap leagues! But so far, we’re just all waiting by the wayside as James takes over the show, and brings his Rockets-era ball hog act to Philly. He isn’t the MVP caliber guy he thinks he is, Joel Embiid should be that!

    Signed,

    Tyrese

     

    Well Mr. M, I think you should hang tight. Don’t give up yet, because there might be a coaching change in your future AND you never know about injuries! Who knows, with one pulled hamstring by an elder statesman, you become the leading scorer on the team. Hang in there, young fella.

     

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    I was an unexpected, early draft pick on a legacy franchise. I was entrusted to become a ruthless defender, and the future of the Midwest. After lots of injuries, and the fact that I’m so young, I still haven’t developed. And now, out of the gates, my minutes are going down and I’m not contributing anything on my team. What should fantasy owners do with me going forward?

    Signed,

    Pat Williams

     

    Patrick, I feel your pain. But you should look for another profession because basketball might not be for you. Anyone who has you on their rosters in fantasy should get rid of you ASAP and not look back, not with Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan in town. And if possible, just request a trade to another team. Sorry pal, thems the breaks.

     

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    I missed last year, and as a RFA I somehow left a playoff team on the rise to join the worst roster in the league. Everyone thought I would be able to light it up nightly, and score at will. So far I’m a bench warmer who is being stifled on a team with no expectations and they’re winning without my scoring. Help!

    Signed,

    C.Sexton

     

    Hi C. Maybe that injury really did stunt your growth into the next D’Angelo Russell, but you should remain a bench player for now. Both in real life and in fantasy. Once everyone realizes that, especially since Jordan Clarkson is a better version of you, the better off everyone will be. Until something changes, like Clarkson is dealt or you improve yourself back to pre-injury Collin. Oops, not supposed to use your name like that!

     

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    I have the best nickname in the league. I should be a Sixth Man of the Year right now. I got the benefit of having no healthy players around me last year, but now they’re all back! My usage is down tremendously, and I was a hot commodity before the season. Now, I have no idea when my time will be. I want that limelight back, what should I do???

    Signed,

    Nah’Shon

     

    Take a wrench to Jamal’s knees, then you’ll be worth picking up in all formats. Just pull a Nancy and Tonya, you’ll thank me later.

    Just kidding! Don’t do that, we do not recommend committing crimes here at SportsEthos. I think in your predicament, it’s hard to be patient since there are probably better options for managers right now. Lots of better performing guys are out there now or could have been picked up in place of you, and that sucks. It could be a mistake to miss out on someone else, but the grass is always greener. Who knows, maybe soon there could be some injuries and you’ll be starting soon. Fate has a weird way of working out like that. Keep working hard and hopefully you’ll start heating up; screw the haters who bailed on you and prove them wrong! Unless your team stays fully healthy, then it’s a lost cause.

     

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    I just inked a deal with my team, and I thought I was going to get a great opportunity with a starting gig on a young, hungry, scrappy team. But alas! Some doofus named Santi is starting over me, and not only that, he’s showing me up. I’m not even doing that well, he totally stole my thunder, and I’m a disappointment so far. With JJJ coming back eventually, where do I sit on the team, am I in their plans, should I have not signed long term with them, and should I ask out for a bigger role on another squad? I’m panicking.

    Signed, 

    Brandon

     

    Well Brandon, no one had ever heard of Santi and he’s looked terrific. Maybe the reason he’s starting over you is because he’s better? A better fit, a better player, and giving a better reason to earn the minutes. Whether or not you regret signing that deal is something only you can figure out, your happiness is your own making. But in terms of fantasy, I would have picked up Santi a week ago and given up hope you would become the second coming of JJJ. It’s all about the minutes and the stats, not who starts and who comes off the bench, and so far, you are just not worth the price of admission your ADP said you’d be. It’s a common trend here, but GMs should care about the statline, NOT where someone was drafted or who their name is. Sorry!

     

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    Zion and Brandon Ingram are hurt, yet we cannot figure out why our seasons so far have sucked eggs. This is ridiculous, we were the best defenders on the court during our playoff series last season, we deserve to be out there doing more, stretching our wings, and contributing!

    Signed,

    Herbert and Jose

     

    I think this is a case of certain players being better in real life then they are in fantasy. Nothing wrong with playing defense, in fact it will get you paid a lot of money! But to expect defense to lift a player to fantasy relevance alone is disingenuous. Not sure anyone on the Pelicans can be worthwhile if Zion, CJ, and Brandon are running the show. Sorry to the rest of the Pelicans roster.

     

    Dear Dr. Russo,

    Jae is gone, and I’m the starting PF. I’m in a contract year because they didn’t give me an extension. I can light it up, but right now, I’m not doing it. What is going on? Give me the ball!!

    Signed, 

    Cameron

     

    Patience, young padwan. Your time will come, and that time might be now, since Deandre is hurt and your team is known to poop the bed. You’re slowly coming into your own, you’ll be worth rostering soon enough. Keep grinding, I have faith in you. Plus, you better have a tremendous year because it’s a contract year and you want to get paid. So light it up! Don’t be timid, shoot your shot young man.

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