Before anything else, take a good look at all the new names and faces in the FabFive Challenge registry. You'll find Pau Gasol of FC Barcelona at the very bottom of Range 4. Iffe Lundberg CSKA Moscow is nestled into the middle of Range 3 and you will see three new players – Jeremy Evans of AX Armani Exchange Milan, Mario Hezonja of Panathinaikos OPAP Athens and Micheal Eric of CSKA Moscow – at the tail end of that range. Two players who may face one another on Thursday, FC Bayern Munich's David Kraemer and Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv's T.J. Cline, are in Range 2.
Will any of these players help your team in Round 26? Several of them just joined their teams and will not even dress this week. However, others have had time to practice and prepare and could not only make their debuts, but potentially with big roles. The safest approach is the wait-and-see one, but if you like what you see, it could be a risk worth taking.
Among the players suggested below for Round 26, you will find many different strategies, including players who may have bigger roles due to injuries, the players who have been hot lately and players with promising matchups. Choose Wisely!
With that in mind, here are some FabFive suggestions for Round 26:
Range 1 (0 to 3.99) – Since he moved into TD Systems Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz's starting lineup in Round 12, Tadas Sedekerskis has averaged 4.4 points per game. He's had at least 8 points in half of his last eight appearances, including a career-best 11 last week. Facing Crvena Zvezda mts Belgrade at home could be another good opportunity for him to score.
Range 2 (4 to 7.99) – Maccabi's go-to guy, Scottie Wilbekin, is dealing with a thumb injury and his availability will be a game-day decision. Even if he plays, Wilbekin may be limited. And if he's out, it leads to plenty of speculation as to who might soak up his shots. Chris Jones is a top candidate.
Range 3 (8 to 11.99) – Zenit St Petersburg center Arturas Gudaitis is playing some of his best basketball with point guard Kevin Pangos looking for the big man whenever he's open. He made 4 of 5 shots in a road win the last time Zenit faced Valencia Basket and he is getting many more looks now.
Range 4 (12 to 14.99) – Some teams just have too many players to stop. In the Istanbul Derby, Efes will surely pay extra attention to former MVPs Nando De Colo and Jan Vesely, which means Marko Guduric, who has made multiple threes in seven straight games, should continue to get his fair amount of open shots.
Range 5 (15.0 or higher) – Playing like a man on a mission, Mike James has three of this season's top 10 scoring efforts. What's more, he knows a thing or two about playing Olympiacos Piraeus at Peace & Friendship Stadium after his stints with Panathinaikos. In his last five games against the Reds, James has averaged 21.4 points. 'Nuff said.
Good luck in Round 26!