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Finding Value in the Draft
Finding value in any fantasy draft is crucial for building a successful fantasy squad. At the same time, reaching for a player because his name brings more value than his actual production, is something fantasy owners want to avoid in drafts as well. The players below offer very similar production, but one player is being drafted too highly based on their name, while the other player will be a great value pick in fantasy drafts because they provide stats similar to the player that is being drafted a lot higher than them. By taking away the name of each player, it allows us to see the players by their production, and not by their name.
All stats are based on the players 2013-14 per game production. *(Field goals attempts per game (field goal percentage)/ free throws attempts per game (free throw percentage))
Player A- 18.4 points (15.5 (44.4%)/ 2.3 (79.5%)), 3.1 rebs, 2.2 ast, 0.9 Steals, 0.5 blocks, 2.8 3PM,
Player B- 19.1 points (15 (43%)/ 5 (89%)), 3 rebounds, 1.8 ast, 1 steal, 0.1 blocks, 1.7 3PM.
Everyone loves Player A, but I will never own him in fantasy leagues because he’ll always be taken to high drafts. Meanwhile, player B has been putting up those type of numbers throughout his career. Player A makes one more three pointer more per game than player B, but player B shoots extraordinary from the free throw and doubles Players A attempts from the charity stripe. Both of these players do very little in assists and steals, which is another reason I wouldn't take player A so high in drafts. Also, player B is likely to see more shots than he did last season because he just became the top scoring option on his team (which is kind of sad).
Player A is Klay Thompson. Player B is Kevin Martin. Let that sink into for a second...don't worry, I'll wait. On a per game basis, Kevin Martin was just as valuable as Klay Thompson last season and both players will put up similar numbers again this season. Except Martin is going to see more shooting opportunites since they Timberwolves shipped away Kevin Love. Thompson will be drafted around the fifth round, while Kevin Martin will go four to five rounds later. Give me Kevin Martin at his draft day value over Thompson's draft day value, every single time.
Player A- 15.8 points, 5.8 FGM/12.9 FGA (45.4%), 2 FTM/2.4 FTA (81.5%), 3.4 rebounds, 2.7 assist, 0.6 steals, 2.1 3PM
Player B- 15.7 points, 5.4 FGM/11.6 FGA (46.3%), 2.9 FTM/3.4 FTA (85.7%), 2.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.4 steals, 2.1 3PM
Both of these players put up identical numbers, but player A made the All-star team for the seventh time, while player B was playing for a losing team and most people ignore him in fantasy leagues. Player A is none other than Joe Johnson, whose name is more valuable than his actual production. Player B is Jodie Meeks, who just signed a three year deal with the Pistons. Meeks will be the starting SG for the Pistons and produce similar numbers as last season. However, Johnson isn't the same player he used to be and will be taken in fantasy drafts just because of name recognition. Meeks has more value in a rotisserie than a points league, while Johnson has become just an average fantasy producer, but does have more upside than Meeks.
Player A- 21.7 points (17 (42%)/ 5.6 (86.4%)), 6.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.9 steals, 2.3 3PM
Player B- 22.7 points (17.8 (43%)/ 8 (82.4%)), 4.3 rebounds, 4 assists, 1.1 steals, 0.8 3PM
Going to spoil this for you as player A is Paul George, who's out for the entire season with a brutal leg injury. I put him in here to show you that player B put up very similar stats as George and is going a lot later in drafts than he should be. Player B is going to win people a lot of leagues because he will be even BETTER this season. That player would be rising star DeMar DeRozan. His numbers increased once Rudy Gay was traded away, is elite in free throws because he attempts a lot per game while having a high average, and will be a player that is going to finish as a second round value, but is getting taken in the fourth or fifth round of drafts. Also, he finished eighth overall in the NBA in points scored. I plan to own him in every league this year because he keeps slipping in drafts and should average close to 25 points, five rebounds, and four assists per game this season.
Player A- 38.7 MPG,13.1 points (10.3(39.7%)/ 5 (77%)), 4.9 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 1.9 steals, 0.5 blocks, one 3PM
Player B- 32.2 MPG,12.3 points (10 (48%)/2.8 (72%)), 2.6 rebounds, 1.7 assist, 1.9 steals, 0.4 blocks, 0.7 3PM
This is another example of a player (A) being extremely overrated, especially since he played 38.7 minutes per game (tied for highest in the NBA with Carmelo Anthony), yet, scored only 13 points per game and was a miserable 39.7% from the field. Player B is going to be drafted at the every end of drafts or maybe not even at all and that would be Corey Brewer. Now i’m not saying Brewer makes a great fantasy pick, I’m just pointing out how average Jimmy Butler was last season. Butler has to play major minutes just to produce decent fantasy numbers and didn't improve his shooting. This is another player that will not be on any one of my fantasy teams because he's overrated and will be drafted way too high in fantasy drafts.
Thats all I got for now for value plays, but theres plenty more of that and more, in the Fantasy Alarm Fantasy Basketball draft guide that will be coming out later this year. Remember, a key to be successful in fantasy sports is by valuing the numbers, not the names, of players. Also, make sure to checkout the awesome Fantasy Alarm Fantasy Football Draft Guide. Feel free to comment below about or hit me up on twitter, @DaTrueGuru ,with any fantasy basketball related question.