Sport Fantasy Basketball: Biggest booms and busts of the first five rounds of Fantasy drafts
NBA Power Rankings: Suns move up to second as West dominates top five
Only 3 of the top 10 teams in the rankings are from the East. 1. Jazz (38-12, Last Week No. 1). Casual fans will say that defense/Donovan Mitchell/Rudy Gobert are behind Utah’s run to the top of the standings (and these NBA power rankings). They’re not totally wrong, but the reality is it’s the 3-ball that propelled the Jazz the NBA’s best record. Utah is averaging 43 attempts from three a game — the most per game in NBA history, topping the 2017-18 Houston team — and is hitting 39.5% of them. That’s 17 made threes a game on average, blowing out the previous record of 15.3 per game by those same Rockets.
With the Fantasy playoffs just around the corner and the play-in tournament a little more than a month away, it feels appropriate to start looking back at what went right and what went wrong in Fantasy for some of the league's most hyped players. I found the biggest differences in Average Draft Position to current Fantasy ranking (total production, eight-category leagues) for each round of drafts this season to compare expectations to reality.
What players have had the biggest booms, and which are the biggest busts of the first five rounds?
One fantasy baseball draft fade from every MLB team
Steamer projects a 4.20 ERA and 1.35 WHIP for Soroka, who will also have to deal with a shaky Braves defense that was one of the worst in baseball last season. There aren’t many great options who fit this exercise in Baltimore, but Mountcastle’s ADP feels a bit inflated thanks to his production in last year’s shortened season, including a .398 BABIP despite an exit velocity that was in the bottom quarter of the league. I can’t get behind him having a higher Yahoo ADP than Josh Bell, although Mountcastle does currently have a higher batting average than on-base percentage in spring training, which is always fun.
Current Rank: 1
Two other players drafted in the first round, Steph Curry and, have also seen their current rank jump eight spots above their ADP. However, Jokic breaks the tie since he's the best player in Fantasy. Jokic's numbers have slowed down since joined the team, though you won't hear the complain since they've rattled off six straight wins. On the season, Jokic has averaged 26.4 points, 10.9 rebounds, 8.6 assists and 1.5 steals in 35.5 minutes. He projects as both the real-life MVP and Fantasy MVP.
Current Rank: 134
Davis was having a down year even before suffering injuries to his calf and Achilles that have kept him out for 23 straight games. His points, rebounds, assists, 3s, blocks, steals and free-throw percentage are all lower than last season. Whether it was fatigue from playing in the NBA Finals a little over two months before the start of this season or taking it easy to save himself for this season's playoffs, Davis' downturn in production was going to hurt Fantasy managers even if he didn't get hurt.
Reflecting on the Fantasy Success of First-Round Wide Receivers (2012-2020)
SI Fantasy analyst Michael Fabiano recaps the fantasy success rate of first-round wide receivers drafted from 2012 to 2020 Fantasy First-Round ReflectionsQuarterbacks (2012-2020)Running Backs (2010-2020)Wide Receivers (2012-2020)The wide receiver position has gained a lot of value in the world of fantasy football in the last decade, even surpassing running backs at one (inconceivable) moment in time. The position does have a ton of talent, and rule changes that favor offenses give wide receivers an advantage over opposing defenses.
Current Rank: 5
Vucevic put up great numbers during both the 2018-19 season and 2019-20 season. But his lack of help from teammates this season, due to both injury and skill level, forced him to run more of the offense than ever before. And so far, being dealt to thehasn't affected his numbers. In 33.8 minutes per game, Vucevic has averaged 24.3 points, 11.7 rebounds and 3.8 assists.
Current Rank: 61
On a per-game basis, Simmons is in the midst of the worst Fantasy season of his career. He's unquestionably made strides on defense during his career, and we have to give him credit for continuously improving his free-throw percentage, but he's gone stagnant everywhere else. After he put up 16/8/8 with nearly three combined steals and blocks as a rookie, it would have seemed inconceivable for us to be seeing a version of Simmons that's producing worse across the board as a fourth-year player. My guess is that he'll continue to be drafted based on upside for most of his career, but it's becoming difficult to blame those who see his name available and pass in the second and third round.
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Current Rank: 15
Adebayo certainly can't be blamed for thestruggles. He's proving to be one of the league's elite, well-rounded big men. In 33.6 minutes per game, Adebayo has averaged 19.2 points, 9.6 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 1.2 blocks. In addition to his nice bump over last season in points, Adeabyo's improved free-throw shooting (82.4%) has really helped his cause. It's hard to imagine Adebayo not being a second-round staple from next season onward. His only true weakness is a non-existent 3-point shot.
Current Rank: 185
Many Fantasy managers (including myself) took a chance on Drummond having a great season with Cleveland before inevitably being dealt somewhere else, where his numbers could decline. What wasn't expected was thetelling Drummond to go home more than an entire month before the trade deadline. Losing about six weeks of production from a player in Fantasy Basketball is just as brutal as it is in Fantasy Football, and those who selected Drummond in the third round are feeling it now. He also got injured almost immediately in his first game with the , and we haven't seen him since his debut. From here on out, getting anything from Drummond is a bonus.
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Current Rank: 10
After Paul ranked 11th in total value last season, the thought became, "there's no way he continues to stay healthy and plays at this high of a level as a 35-year-old." Joke's on us. Paul is on pace to have an even better season this time around, and he's helped drag theto the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference. In addition to his 16.0 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.5 steals per game, Paul has averaged his most assists (8.8) since his final season with the .
Current Rank: 152
Fantasy managers took a shot here, banking on Wall returning to great form after last playing in December of 2018. Wall hasn't been bad -- 20.2 points, 6.8 assists, 3.4 rebounds, 1.0 steals -- but the lack of assists from a man nicknamed Optimus Dime is concerning. He was also one of the best sources of steals in the NBA during his prime. His 40.0 percent field-goal percentage is the lowest of his career as well. And this is all before we get to him missing 18 games due to injury and rest. The pessimists prevailed in this one.
Current Rank: 12
Randle believers are taking a victory lap this season, as new head coach Tom Thibodeau has handed the keys to the seventh-year forward. He's posted career highs nearly across the board, with averages of 22.9 points, 10.8 rebounds and 6.0 assists in 37.0 minutes. Randle leads the NBA in total minutes played (1,849), which is part of what's vaulted him to first-round value. Considering Randle is just 26 years old, there's still room for more improvement next season and beyond. It wouldn't be shocking to see him drafted in the third round in 2021-22.
Current Rank: 132
This is a bizarre ADP. Adams has never ranked higher than 68th on a per-game basis in his career. Regardless, Adams' time in New Orleans hasn't felt exactly comfortable. He's a poor fit with, and there was a point in time where coach Stan Van Gundy began to experiment with giving more minutes to -- not a great sign for Adams' on-court fit. Adams is having his worst season since his sophomore campaign, as he's averaged just 7.9 points, 8.9 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.0 steals in 28.1 minutes.
Honoring the hottest March Madness stars right now, plus who are the best MLB players at every position? .
Let us celebrate the standout players through the first couple of rounds . Our David Cobb put together an "All-First Weekend Team" that highlights the stars that deserve recognition for their big-time performances so far. Here's the First Team lineup: Max Abmas, Oral RobertsBuddy Boeheim, SyracuseJustin Smith, ArkansasKevin Obanor, Oral RobertsDrew Timme, GonzagaCobb also compiled a Second Team and some honorable mentions, so you can check out the full list of standouts right here.