With the NBA season just over two weeks away, fantasy teams are being selected. Here are four players you should think twice about before drafting with an early pick.
Anthony Davis – C Los Angeles Lakers
Anthony ‘day-to-day’ Davis, as he is known in the fantasy community, has a reputation for injury and sitting out games for rest.
Davis, when playing last season, put up decent numbers at a clip of 42.5 Yahoo fantasy points per game, with 36 games played. He put up 1,500 points on the year which ranked him at 110 overall.
Yahoo has Davis slated as the 11th overall pick while ESPN has him going 20th.
When Davis does play, he is a perennial all-star, last year he averaged 21.8 points per game (PPG), 7.9 rebounds (RPG) and 3.1 assists (APG). It’s hard to say whether these totals will increase or decrease with the addition of Russell Westbrook.
What can be said is there should be more consistent options in the 10 – 20 picks scope. Trae Young, Jason Tatum, and Julius Randle, to name a few, are floating around that range they are more reliable and have superior fantasy numbers.
Ben Simmons – PG Philadelphia 76ers
The situation between Simmons and the Sixers that has been going on all off-season shows no indication of resolution.
Last year he put up 14.3 PPG, 7.2 RPG and 6.9 APG on an excellent Sixers team.
Under the right lens, Simmons could be looked at as a bargain, but his enigmatic style remains too chancy to justify a high pick.
As a basketball player, shooting notwithstanding, he will get your fantasy team points. It just all comes down to will he play?
Simmons is a pass in all but the mid-to-late rounds.
Gordan Hayward – SG/SF Charlotte Hornets
Hayward continues to struggle with injury. Last season the Butler product missed 28 games after missing over 100 games in a three season stint with the Boston Celtics.
When Hayward is on the floor he is a solid wing scorer and facilitator, but his availability leaves something to be desired. Last season he recaptured form not seen since his Utah Jazz days with splits of 19.6 PPG, 5.9 RPG and 4.1 APG in 44 games played.
This totaled 1,551 fantasy points, ranking 105th overall. Yahoo has Hayward going as early as the 60th pick, ESPN has him at a more sensible 112th.
The gamble is on his health and availability, recent history does not favour him.
Lonzo Ball – PG/SG Chicago Bulls
Ball is going to have a fantastic supporting cast in Chicago, and he should have more opportunity to create for his new teammates DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine.
He had an excellent season in 2020-21, averaging 14.6 PPG 5.7 APG and 4.8 RPG. What is interesting is Ball is ranked higher than both DeRozan and LaVine.
ESPN has Ball ranked 42nd while Yahoo has him at 41. Ball racked in 1807 fantasy points in 51 games played last year, good enough for 69thoverall.
Ball Deserves a roster spot in all leagues but taking him before the likes Brandon Ingram, LaVine or DeRozan is ill-advised.