In this article, we’ll talk about a few players who we think can crack the Top 25, Top 50, Top 100, and some potential busts who might fall out of the Top 100.
Last season, Chavano “Buddy” Hield played ALL 82 games while averaging 32 mpg, 20.7ppg, 5 rebounds, 2.5 assists, with respectable counting stats. There’s no reason to think the former shooting guard out of Oklahoma can’t expand on those gaudy numbers.
Entering his 4th year in the league, he has the best supporting cast of his young career led by budding star De’Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley, veteran Harrison Barnes, and newly acquired big man Dewayne Dedmon.
Iron Man – He has only missed 2 games in his 3-year career, which absolutely qualifies him as an Iron Man. Remember, the best ability is AVAILABILITY. With no injury history, better supporting cast, and a realistic shot at making the playoffs, there’s no reason to think Buddy won’t play all 82 games while cracking the Top 25 this year. I’m all in on Buddy this year and you should be, too.
There’s a lot of questions surrounding the 3rd year pro out of Arizona. Can he stay healthy? Can he overcome all of the mouths to feed in Chicago?
Last season, Markannen missed the first 23 games of the season due to an elbow strain. He winded up finishing the season with averages of 18.7 ppg, 9 rebounds, 2.3 3PM, and the occasional block and steal. He’s entering the 2019-2020 season fully healthy and ready to take over as the alpha on this rising team of budding stars. Although his teammates Zach LaVine, Otto Porter Jr., and Wendell Carter Jr. could command usage in this offense, I think Markannen will insert himself as the go-to guy in this offense.
Only time will tell, but I think having quality players around him will take attention away from him, and it will make sure he’s never double-teamed allowing him to ball out. I don’t think it’s out of the realm of possibility that he can average 20+ ppg, 10+ rebounds, 2.5 3PM, while upping his counting stats. Draft him with confidence in the 3rd-4th round.
Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like this guy has been in the league forever. Despite this being his 8th year in the league, he is only 27 years old. He is entering the 2019-2020 season as the unquestioned starting center for a young, up-tempo Memphis Grizzlies team that will lean on him for his veteran leadership and capabilities underneath the basket.
The first 7 years of his career, he constantly showed promise with limited playing time. It felt like his ceiling was always capped by Serge Ibaka, and he was never the focal point of this offense. In Memphis, he’s going to see upwards of 28-30 minutes per game as the starting center. It would not surprise me to see him average 18 points, 10 rebounds, 2 blocks, and the occasional 3PM. Top 50 production seems inevitable for the 8th year center out of Lithuania.
Ever since the Nuggets traded for Gary Harris in the 2014 NBA Draft, he has been one a premier 3&D guy in the NBA. Over the past three seasons, Harris has averaged well over 1.5+ steals and 1.5+ 3PM. He’s been one of the most efficient players in the league keeping his FG% above 45%.
Last season was an injury-riddled season for Harris, but he was still able to hit 1.5 3PM and 1 steal per game. He’s coming into the 2019-2020 season as the unquestioned starting shooting guard for the talented Denver Nuggets, and I see him continuing his efficiency while getting back to averaging 15+ points, 3+ rebounds, 3+ assists, 1.5+ steals, and 1.5+ 3PM while keeping his FG percentages high.
Last season was Cedi’s first year as the full-time starter. He went on to play 76 games while averaging 32 mpg, 13 ppg, 1.7 3PM, 2.6 assists, and 0.8 steals. He had flashes of being a fantasy stud, but also went through some growing pains. Despite the inconsistencies, Cedi showed why the Cavs trusted him to be their starting forward. Entering his 3rd year in the league, he has the opportunity to become the go-to scorer on this young Cavs team. There’s no one behind him to challenge him for minutes, so his minutes are likely going to stay in the low 30s. With Sexton and Garland distributing the ball, I can see Cedi taking a considerable jump and vaulting himself in the top-100 when all is said and done.
At 25 years old, Jerami Grant is entering his 6th year in the league. Last season, he broke out to the tune of 33 mpg, 13.6 ppg (on 50% FG), 5.2 rebounds, 1.3 blocks, and 0.8 steals. That’s incredible! Grant took advantage of his opportunity in OKC and performed very well. Unfortunately, OKC decided to do a fire sale after they shipped Westbrook to Houston. Grant was traded to possibly the worst situation as far as opportunity goes. The Denver Nuggets have the most depth out of anyone in the league, and Jerami Grant will be fighting for minutes off the bench.
Sure, he might get occasional spot starts when Paul Millsap receives load management, but to expect the same stats as last year will be near-impossible for Grant to duplicate. Even if he gets 22-26 minutes off the bench, there are too many options in this high-powered Nuggets offense for Grant to score enough to keep him in the top 100. He will still be good for some counting stats, but don’t expect top 100 numbers.
I’m a firm believer that the 3rd year is when a player finds his groove and starts to take off, but I don’t think this will be the case for Kyle Kuzma. When Lonzo, Brandon Ingram, and Josh Hart were shipped to NO, the initial expectation was that Kuzma’s usage rate was going to spike, but this is will not be the case. With usage rate monster Anthony Davis coming into town, Kuzma will now be a distant third option on a Laker team full of veterans.
Let me get one thing straight; I’m not questioning Kuzma’s talent and prowess for scoring. Kuzma can score there’s no denying that, but what can he provide to fantasy owners apart from points? He gets no counting stats and needs a high usage rate to score in bunches. With LeBron James and Anthony Davis as his teammates, the only times he’ll be able to produce top 100 numbers is if one or both are load-managed.
Kuzma’s current ADP is at 76 (early 7th round). I need someone who can get me counting stats with a better opportunity for me to pay that price on draft day. Pass.
Do you agree or disagree with my list? I want to hear from you!
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God bless and let’s win a championship together!
Jacob W Dunne