Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
By definition, something that is temporary has a limited run, an expiration date. Things will change and the temporary fix will no longer be needed. In fantasy sports, that is usually the return of an injured player.
The players listed below will not get an entire season of extra playing time, but at least for the next few weeks, should have a much-improved value and could be a solid fantasy contributor.
The key is to know when to release/trade/bench them and not get stuck with any bad games.
Luol Deng, Chicago - While Kurt Thomas has started at center for the injured Joakim Noah, it's Deng who has seen his fantasy value rise in the young center's absence. In January, Deng improved his ppg, rpg and apg from his December numbers, which had taken a hit from the return of power forward Carlos Boozer. But Noah is due back in about two more weeks and when both Boozer and Noah are available up front, Deng should see less playing time. This week could be the perfect time to "sell high" on Deng, as barring more injuries to the Bulls frontcourt, Deng will have limited upside value.
Randy Foye, LA Clippers - The Clippers' starting shooting guard, Eric Gordon, is out for three-to-four weeks (wrist) and Foye is taking full advantage of the opportunity. In his first four starts of the season, Foye averaged 19 ppg and 3.5 apg. There is no one else on the roster to fill the role, so Foye should be a solid fantasy option for another three weeks. Just be aware that once Gordon returns, Foye will have zero value again as he averaged just 11 minutes per game when Gordon was healthy.
Mike Miller, Miami - With Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh sidelined for multiple games last month, Miller became an important scoring option in the Heat's offense. He has posted double-digit points in three of the last five contests and also three 10-or-more rebound games in the same span. But with the return of the two injured superstars, Miller will take a much smaller role into February's games and should be left on your bench or released. He'll have little or no trade value.
Carlos Delfino, Milwaukee - Delfino filled in very nicely for injured shooting guard Michael Redd at the beginning of the season, but his time as a valued fantasy option is at an end. He and Chris Douglas-Roberts played a big role while much of Milwaukee's backcourt (Redd, Brandon Jennings, John Salmons) was watching in street clothes, but Jennings has come off the bench in the last two games and appears ready to resume his starting PG role, which also included a fair amount of shooting. And Salmons, who can play either shooting guard or small forward, will need a spot in the starting lineup when he is healthy. He's probably not going to take Corey Maggette's spot, which means Delfino and CDR will have to come off the bench.
Ben Gordon, Detroit - Gordon has put up two very nice games in a row (21 and 35 pts) while Rodney Stuckey was sidelined by a shoulder injury. Gordon had a shot as a starter a few weeks back, but a cold shooting streak ended his opportunity. Instead, the Pistons will opt to start Tracy McGrady and Stuckey at the guard positions -- as soon as Stuckey is healthy again -- and Gordon will return to the sixth-man role. I'd hold on to Gordon because as sure as it's going to snow in Philadelphia in February, McGrady will get hurt and Gordon will have another chance to start for the Pistons.