Basketball Season 2: Movers of Week 3

© Athletes Unlimited, LLC 2023 / Credit: Jade Hewitt Media
Savanna Collins
Mar 14, 2023

Week 3 of most Athletes Unlimited seasons is typically where the tide starts to turn for the top of the leaderboard to pull away. But this season it gave very little separation between the top 10 spots. It did, however, feature some significant jumps for individuals. In particular, a rare 7-spot leap into the captain’s chair for Kierstan Bell.

Here is a breakdown of how each team finished the week and the win points their rosters took home:

  • Team Sims (2-1) and Team Smith (2-1) earned identical win points this week with 700 total
  • Team Hillmon also went 2-1 but didn’t win quite as many quarters as the Gold and Blue Squads so they earned 500 win points
  • Team Mitchell, unfortunately, was the odd team out, going 0-3 on the series and collecting only 200 win points from four quarters won.

Mover of the Week: Lexie Brown

There was one direction Lexie Brown was destined to go in Week 3 and that is up.

Brown missed two games in Week 2 due to an excused absence from the league, cutting into her stat points. She wasted no time heating back up on the court and leaderboard upon her return. She moved up 11 spots to No. 20 overall and was the 6th-highest stat point earner of the week.

Competing with Team Hillmon, Brown collected first-place MVP honors on Wednesday night when she hit a career-high 21 points. That night she tied the AU single-game three-point record with six treys.

Up and into the top 4: Kierstan Bell

Making a move that changed her entire AU experience is Kierstan Bell, who unexpectedly shot from No. 7 on the leaderboard to No. 3 on the final day of games. It’s not that Bell hasn’t been playing well, it’s that being a captain totally caught her off guard.

Week 3 was her best yet at AU: she was the highest overall point earner of the week and the second-highest stat points earner with 640 total across the series. What’s interesting about Bell is that it’s not often her performances result in deducted points.

Bell’s (minimal) deductions in Week 3 games:

  • Efficiency kept missed shot deductions down
    • Made 63.6% of two-pointers
    • Made 31.8% of three-pointers
  • Only turned the ball over twice (-20)
  • Fouled just four times (-32)

Her stellar performances garnered her election as a game MVP in all three contests. Twice she earned +90 for MVP 1 honors and a +30 for MVP 3.

Players to Watch: Lexie Brown and Kelsey Mitchell

If you’re competing in the AU Fantasy League this season, you know that Odyssey Sims and NaLyssa Smith should be an absolute given every week. They’ve been in the top four of point earners every single week this season and are almost immovable from the No. 1 and No. 2 spots on the leaderboard.

It’s your other two picks you have to make carefully.

First, it’s important to identify which team is predicted to have the best record that week because win points will always make the biggest impact. Wins combined with great performances individually are the key to Fantasy points.

With that being said, the aforementioned Lexie Brown and Kelsey Mitchell are two players to watch this week.

Both athletes are on Team Smith, whose captain has been all but perfect going at least 2-1 so it’s safe to predict the win points to be there for them. The team that Smith has assembled is reminiscent of her Week 2 squad (it’s what shot Mitchell to be a captain last week). Both these guards can thrive in the system Smith creates paired with Sydney Colson as the facilitator on the court.

Tune in to the Athletes Unlimited Preview Show on Wednesday, March 15 at 6:30 p.m. ET / 5:30 p.m. CT on YouTube. Then, Week 4 tips off with Team Bell vs. Team Smith at 7 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. CT on CBS Sports Network.

Savanna Collins is the Digital Media Reporter at Athletes Unlimited. You can follow her on Twitter @savannaecollins.

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