The great hustler Matthew Berry does a love/hate column for fantasy football every week, so I thought I do one for basketball.
9-Cat Love (Yahoo standard leagues)
Anthony Davis (ADP 6) – If he can finally stay healthy this season he’s got top 3 upside
Kawhi Leonard (6.9) – In a league that counts turnovers it’s rare to get a top tier talent that helps you in that category
Chris Paul (8.6) – Mr. Consistency. Has been a fantasy beast for a decade.
Hassan Whiteside (14.7) – Post all-star he averaged 17.5ppg last season. With Bosh confirmed out and Wade gone, this dude is going to be a monster.
DeMarcus Cousins (14.9) – Will hurt your FG% as a big man & TOs are an issue, but could very well return top 10 value.
John Wall (16.1) – The turnovers will hurt, but delivers top tier assists.
Blake Griffin (27.8) – Coming off a season from hell, he’s a good bet to bounce back.
Brook Lopez (32) – Put up all-star numbers last season on one of the worst teams in the league. Should do it again this season.
Victor Oladipo (33.4) – Good situation for him in OKC and he was amazing down the stretch last season.
Gordon Hayward (49.6) – Had a slightly down season, but excellent price here for a wing.
Marc Gasol (61) – Word is that he is healthy. Good buy-low target.
Nicolas Batum (66.3) – Had a good season for the Hornets last year. No reason why he shouldn’t have another one.
Goran Dragic (67) – Bosh it out. Wade is gone. The Dragon is going to unleash his wrath this season.
Dennis Schroder (67.4) – Jeff Teague is gone in ATL. Feel like Schroder is a better cheaper Reggie Jackson.
Nikola Mirotic (82.9) – Pau Gasol is gone & he’s one of the few 3pt shooters the Bulls have. The playing time will finally be there for him.
Enes Kanter (97.4) – Ibaka and Durant are gone. Kanter is now the best scoring big man the Thunder have.
Robert Covington (100.1) – The Sixers don’t have a lot of shooters. He’s been really good the past two seasons & there is no reason why he won’t continue to be good.
Jae Crowder (100.9) – Was insanely good last season and is an efficient player.
Harrison Barnes (106.6) – Bigger role in store for Harrison. His efficiency will take a bit of a hit, but his counting stats will surely increase. MIP candidate.
Evan Fournier (108.6) – Was terrific post all-star last season. With Oladipo gone he might break 20ppg. Those high scoring players are hard to find at this point in the draft.
Clint Capela (114.6) [H2H ONLY] – His FT% will kill you in roto, but if you are playing H2H and punting FT% this is great value for Capela who is expected to start for the Rockets with Dwight gone.
Danny Green (115.3) – I’m not going to sugarcoat it. He was really bad last season. However, the previous season he was an efficient monster. Buy him at this discount and if he doesn’t bounce back in the first month drop him.
Rodney Hood (116.2) – Hood is a young player that has a defined role for the Jazz who is only going to get better.
Andrew Bogut (120.7) – You would think the FT% hurts, but since he doesn’t shoot a lot of them it’s not that bad. Good place to get blocks with low turnovers.
Kyle Korver (122.9) – Two years ago Kyle Korver was a rockstar. Last year he wasn’t great, but similar to Danny Green if he doesn’t produce early you can move on from him.
Marvin Williams (123.7) – He had a career year last season. Expect some regression with MKG back. Even though there might not be a lot of profit with Marvin he has a solid floor.
Markieff Morris (127.2) – Was his normal self after being traded to the Wizards. At h is sticker price you getting top 85 value.
Buddy Hield (137.3) – Situation, situation, and did I mention situation? Yes. he’s a rookie, but Tyreke Evans is still hurt and Jrue Holiday is likely to miss time. Someone is going to put up points on the Pelicans besides Anthony Davis and Buddy is a good bet to be that guy.
Alex Len (139.8) – The skill-set is there. Didn’t fit beside playing next to Tyson Chandler last season. This Suns team has a lot invested in youth. There’s no reason for them to play Tyson Chandler heavy minutes anymore.
Bojan Bogdanovic (140.4) – One of the few shooters on the Nets and he looked good last season. With the Nets upgrading to Lin at PG it should help free up Bojan for some better looks.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (146.7) – Was injured for the majority of last season. His shot looks a little better and he will be part of the rotation. Worth a flyer.
Dario Saric (147.2) – With Ben Simmons out, Dario Saric will have a place to play in this rotation. He does a little bit of everything and is worth rostering.
Terrence Jones (148.5) – Good situation for him to play along aside Anthony Davis in New Orleans. He is an efficient player that will deliver as long as he’s healthy.
Norman Powell (-) Call me biased. Do it! He’s the only Raptor I have on this 9-cat love list. Was terrific as a rookie post all-star break when he got legit minutes. Powell is an efficient player that has a spot in the Raptors rotation. It’s criminal he’s going undrafted. Baby, buy, buy, buy!
Jimmy Butler (ADP 12.1) – Jimmy Butler wasn’t a top 12 player last season and that’s before the nightmare additions of Rajon Rondo & Dwyane Wade.
Andre Drummond (42.9) – A FT% killer in roto you just can recover from
DeAndre Jordan (47) – *See Andre Drummond
Otto Porter (47.6) – Porter had an insanely efficient fantasy season last year, but finished barely in the top 60. Even if he improves his game there is zero profit picking him here.
Rajon Rondo (53.3) – Has become a horrible real-life NBA player. If he’s hurting Wade or Butler which he will that 35mpg will massively decrease.
Dwight Howard (67.6) – *See Andre Drummond
Dwyane Wade (69) – Wade finished barely inside the top 100 last season. He’s getting older and his situation is worse. You are taking a bath if you draft him here.
Bismack Biyombo (97.4) – Biyombo didn’t finish in the top 150 last season with the Raptors. Entering a crowded front-court with Ibaka, Vucevic, & Gordon just make things worse for him.
Paul Pierce (127) – Don’t buy the name brand. Absolutely useless for fantasy at this point in his career. Doesn’t have the “it” factor.
Iman Shumpert (131.7) – Was really bad last season. Hard to imagine him having fantasy value.
Tyson Chandler (137.4) Tyson Chandler has been a solid fantasy asset for much of his career, but last season finished outside the top 150. He needs to step aside and let Alex Len solidify himself as the starting centre on the Suns.
8-Cat Love (ESPN standard leagues)
Anthony Davis (ADP 9.4) – If he can finally stay healthy this season he’s got top 5 upside
Giannis Antetokounmpo (15.4) – Top 12 value in the final 2 months last season. Without Middleton that could climb to as high as 8.
John Wall (15.4) With turnovers not being tabulated Wall delivered first round value last season, so he shouldn’t be drafted outside the top 12.
Hassan Whiteside (16.8) – Whiteside was a monster post all-star break. With Bosh confirmed out and Wade gone expect more monster numbers.
Eric Bledsoe (28.9) – Bledsoe has the injury risk, but based on per game numbers he was a top 16 talent in this format last season.
Victor Oladipo (31.5) – Over the final 2 months of the season last year ‘Dipo was a top 13 talent. Situation gets better playing for OKC.
Brook Lopez (34.2) – Lopez gives you almost a round of profit drafting him here. Plus his role isn’t going to change, so he’s a nice safe bet to repeat.
Nicolas Batum (45.2) – Top 36 talent based on this format last season. No reason why he doesn’t continue doing more of the same.
Dennis Schroder (69.5) – Teague is gone. Schroder is a better cheaper Reggie Jackson.
Ricky Rubio (79.6) This is absolutely criminal! Was a top 35 talent last season. As good as Kris Dunn will be he’s not going to make a massive dent in Rubio’s stock as a rookie.
Jonas Valanciunas (81.4) – Please! He finished top 65 last season. With Biyombo gone he will at least finish in the top 55.
Robert Covington (114.8) – Top 60 player last season. Not a sexy name, but the Sixers need shooting to pair with their bigs.
Danny Green (119.2) – Had a season from hell, but two years ago was a top 30 talent. Expect a bounce back into that top 75 range.
Nikola Mirotic (120.4) – Was inconsistent last season, but he’s one of the few 3pt shooters the Bulls have, so the minutes have to be there.
Tim Frazier (-) With Jrue Holiday potentially missing time he could be a nice stop-gap.
Patrick Beverley (-) The value is there. Needs to be drafted in 10-man leagues.
Norman Powell (-) Feel like he has surpassed Ross on the depth chart and was pretty good post all-star. Expect a fantasy relevant year 2.
Karl-Anthony Towns (4.8 ADP) – Didn’t deliver top 15 numbers in this format last season. Why are you paying top 5 for him?
Damian Lillard (11.7) – Expensive. I have him in that same tier with Lowry, Irving, Thomas, & Bledsoe.
Andre Drummond (30.3) – His FT% will kill you in roto
Dwyane Wade (47.8) – Delivered top 66 value in this format last season. Things only get worse for him.
Bradley Beal (65.4) – Injuries aside he was barely a top 80 value last season.
Kent Bazemore (77.6) – Fell off down the stretch. Don’t think he repeats pre all-star performance. Wouldn’t even buy Baze on 420.
Derrick Rose (79.5) – Barely finished inside the top 130 last season. Why are you drafting him 50 spots earlier?
Andre Iguodala (89.9) – Good real life player, but just not good in fantasy anymore. Barely top 140 value last season.
Tristan Thompson (94.8) – Barely finished inside the top 165. How does he jump 70 spots?
Jarrett Jack (109) – Ya he was a top 75 value last season as a starter, but he’s not a backup for the Hawks. Really not fantasy value here unless Schroder goes down.