UP Delonte West, G, Cleveland
West gives you a little bit of everything: points, rebounds, assists, steals, even blocks. He can shoot the three, and he's a fearless competitor. Back from his wrist injury, West is already in the Cavs' starting lineup. Look for Delonte and the LeBrons to take off down the stretch.
UP Andrea Bargnani, C, Toronto
Bargnani's value as the season winds down will skyrocket now that Jermaine O'Neal has been traded to Miami. The Raptors have a balanced, skilled front line of Bargnani, Shawn Marion, and Chris Bosh, and Bargnani showed recently how well he fits in by posting 28 points, 10 boards, and three blocks against the Knicks.
UP Leandro Barbosa, G, Phoenix
As noted above, there are many more scoring opportunities available in Phoenix because of Amar'e Stoudemire's eye injury, and Barbosa -- "The Brazilian Blur" -- should receive many of them. Barbosa has been inserted into the starting lineup, and interim coach Alvin Gentry wants to play up-tempo, a style that suits the ultra-quick Barbosa.
DOWN Nene, C, Denver
The mammoth center was playing through an unprecedented (for him) healthy stretch until banging knees last weekend with Richard Jefferson. There's no major damage, but sit Nene and try for production from someone else (teammate Renaldo Balkman?) until he's back in the lineup.
DOWN John Salmons, G, Chicago
Salmons landed in Chicago after last week's deadline deal between the Kings and the Bulls. Salmons was the second or third scoring option in Sacramento, but in Chicago he's going to get only 20 to 30 minutes per night. Dropping him in favor of a player like Kyle Lowry (sent from the Grizzlies to the Rockets at the deadline) may be a chance worth taking.
DOWN Shaquille O'Neal, C, Phoenix
If you're a Shaq owner, you'd better hope he has his wind for the next six weeks, because the Suns are going to be running at all times. Conventional wisdom calls for Shaq's numbers to increase because Stoudemire is out for the year. Don't count on it. O'Neal will barely keep up with the Suns' fast-paced attack; expect his scoring and rebounding numbers to decrease.
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This week's OT cover
OT beat writersMaureen Mullen brings you Red Sox information and insights.
Tom Wilcox covers the Patriots.
Scott Souza is all over the Celtics.
Danny Picard is on the ice with the Bruins.
Mike McDonald takes a look at the humorous side of Boston sports