When you’re writing about fantasy basketball, this is a fun time of season. Thanks in large part to limited statistical data, it’s easy to make one to one comparisons about a player’s production and value this time of year, and as such there is a tendency to want to extrapolate early season stats out over the course of the year. It’s important to remember that late in the season when you’re making a playoff push, these past weeks will appear mere splits that just as likely represent aberrations rather than trends. Nevertheless, being the first to spot certain trends and landing top waiver wire targets is essential to winning championships too, so just take the information for what it’s worth. Below are the players most outperforming their average draft positions:
Rank: 8, ADP: 118 — Tony Wroten (PHI) – 44.1fg%, 63.8ft%, 1.7 3ptm, 21.8pts, 6.7ast, 4.3rbd, 2.7stl, 0.4blk
Building on a solid first week, Tony Wroten continued his torrid run last week, including 27pt/8ast and 31pt/7ast games. Perhaps a sell high candidate, Wroten will likely regress somewhat when Michael Carter-Williams returns from his shoulder injury this Thursday. The 76ers have enough want of production that I think Wroten could remain productive, and therefore rosterable, though he’s probably more suited to fill a utility spot at best on your roster. He’s been terribly inefficient and careless with the basketball at times; ultimately MCW brings a much more polished game to the point. It’s unfair to expect Wroten to remain a top-10 player, but if you can get him for next to nothing (ie: someone you might end up dropping at some-point) I wouldn’t be against rolling the dice either.
Rank: 11, ADP: 112 — Reggie Jackson (OKC) – 37.0fg%, 79.2ft%, 1.8 3ptm, 20.0pts, 8.3ast, 4.3rbd, 0.3stl, 0.3blk
Jackson returned from injury into a near perfect situation (for him, and you): he’s the guy in OKC right now, logging 4 consecutive 40 minute games. Jackson has really emerged as am impact player last season and could wind up playing himself into a big contract even when he finds himself back as OKC’s 6th man by the end of the season. Owners should already realize that Jackson won’t be taking 20 shots per game once KD and Westbrook return, and should have already decided whether they’re going to sell him while he still has value, or simply ride him till the wheels come off.
Rank: 12, ADP: 74 — Brandon Knight (MLK) – 43.0fg%, 89.2ft%, 1.4 3ptm, 17.6pts, 7.3ast, 6.4rbd, 1.4stl, 0.1blk – 36.43pts
I wrote last week that I thought Brandon Knight is in for a career year, cough cough contract year.
Rank: 21, ADP: 95 — Jimmy Butler (CHI) – 50.0fg%, 78.4ft%, 0.6 3ptm, 19.6pts, 3.8ast, 6.2rbd, 1.8stl, 0.8blk
Jimmy Butler shot 39.7% from the field last season, but aside from that most of his stats are what you would reasonably expect from his career numbers. Now in his fourth year in the league however, Butler was hampered by injuries last year and he did shoot 46.7% in 2012, so it’s plausible to think his shot is just coming around. His splits from last season show he that shot sub-40% in December and January, but shot 40+% in February, March and April, supporting that conclusion. Butler is accustomed to playing without Derrick Rose, and the Bulls need his production either way, so look for Butler to continue balling. Noteworthy: he’s also in a contract year.
Rank: 52, ADP: 122 — Jordan Hill (LAL) – 52.3fg%, 78.3ft%, 0.0 3ptm, 14.3pts, 2.7ast, 8.7rbd, 0.2stl, 1.3blk
Jordan Hill is an absolute beast on the glass, who does everything you want a center to do from a fantasy perspective. Specifically, he blocks shots in bunches and shoots efficiently from the field and the line. Boozer can’t be the “guy” in the paint anymore and Julius Randle is done for the season so Hill will likely continue blowing up all season. Great snag if you drafted him.
Rank: 69, ADP: 133 — Draymond Green (GS) – 47.6fg%, 75.0ft%, 1.8 3ptm, 14.3pts, 2.2ast, 7.8rbd, 1.2stl, 1.3blk
It’s frustrating as an Andre Iguodala owner to watch Draymond Green do exactly what Iguodala used to do: play great defense, shoot efficiently and post diverse stat lines on a nightly basis. Otherwise it’s hard not to love what Green’s been doing lately, and he may have earned playing time regardless of David Lee’s status. From a fantasy perspective Draymond Green is a high upside fantasy play, an asset is 7 categories, and I’m holding on to him where I have him.
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Major League Fantasy Football Radio: Join Ej Garr and Corey D Roberts this Sunday November 16th from 11am-12pm EST for this week’s live episode of Major League Fantasy Sports Radio sponsored by the Sports Palooza Radio Network. Call in to ask questions live at 646.915.8596. This weeks guests are Bryan Robinson and Matt Barkman. Both Bryan and Matt write for MLFS. Bryan publishes a piece every Thursday called “FLEXual Tension” in which he focuses on the WR/RB position from week to week. Matt publishes a piece every Sunday morning at 9am EST called “Off the Matt” in which he focuses on key players either “out”, “questionable”, or “doubtful” to play Sunday or Monday. He then provides you with alternatives.
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