Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

2013 Fantasy Basketball Draft Prep: Rookies breakdown

Fantasy Writer
  •  

This year's draft class was considered one of the weakest in years. And the rookie class that emerged looks extremely underwhelming as the start of their careers looms.

Looking over the first-year players, I don't see anyone who has a chance to come close to Trail Blazers Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard, who emerged as a top 10 Fantasy guard last season thanks to a combination of skill and team need.

A number of rookies could be looking at a Lillard-esque role this season, but it is difficult to see any of them stepping up and emerging as stars in the same way. Still, that doesn't mean you should overlook all of this year's class, even in yearly Fantasy formats. This is how I would rank the rookies at this point in the preseason.

Starting Material

Michael Carter-Williams, G, 76ers; Trey Burke, G, Jazz; Victor Oladipo, G, Magic

This trio of guards shares three things in common that put them above their peers at the start of the season -- they play for bad teams, they should get big minutes on those bad teams and they should have the ball in their hands a lot. All three showed they had a lot to learn in the Orlando Summer League, but they all play on teams that are likely to let them learn on the fly.

Oladipo is likely a step below the other two, due to the presence of Arron Afflalo, as well as the learning curve that will be involved with a defense-first guard attempting to learn to run an offense on the fly.

Burke and Carter-Williams will almost certainly struggle with their efficiency, though for very different reasons. Burke has nice shooting range, shooting 38.4 percent on five 3-pointers per game as a sophomore. He may struggle to finish in the paint in the pros, which was his biggest issue in the summer league. Carter-Williams, on the other hand, has the length to become a really good finisher inside, but has absolutely no jump shot at this point, while playing on a team that offers him very little help.

On the border

Ben McLemore, G, Kings; Kelly Olynyk, F, Celtics; Cody Zeller, C, Bobcats; C.J. McCollum, G, Trail Blazers

It says a lot about how I feel about this rookie class that I would not be surprised if any of this group was the best Fantasy option as a rookie. They do all, however, carry some significant barriers to reaching that point, hence their lower rankings.

McLemore and McCollum have more than enough ability to be starting Fantasy options, but the opportunities may not be there. Even with the loss of Tyreke Evans through free agency, the Kings are still loaded with guards, which leaves his role in doubt at this point. McCollum is a big part of the Trail Blazers' revitalized bench, but the presence of Mo Williams as the backup point guard severely limits his potential.

As for Olynyk and Zeller, they are undoubtedly skilled offensive big men -- and have been since college. Both should get plenty of chances to show that on teams that desperately need offense. Still, Zeller will likely have to spend a lot of time out on the perimeter with Al Jefferson around, which should hurt his efficiency and rebounding numbers, while Olynyk has lingering injury concerns, as well as questions about his athleticism transferring to the NBA.

I would certainly draft every player mentioned so far and expect them to stay on at least someone's roster for much of the season.

Reserves

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, G, Pistons; Otto Porter, F, Wizards; Anthony Bennett, F, Cavaliers; Alex Len, C, Suns; Sergey Karasev, F, Cavaliers

This is the part of the class where I start to think about leaving players off my draft board. I have concerns about every player here, mostly due to their probable roles.

Bennett has the skill set to be a solid stretch-four in a modern NBA offense, and that is the role the Cavaliers see for him now. Unfortunately, he has to contend with the presence of Tristan Thompson and Anderson Varejao ahead of him, while also possible lineups with Earl Clark at power forward. I'm simply not convinced the No. 1 overall pick is going to stand out in a deep Cleveland frontcourt.

Caldwell-Pope, Porter and Karasev all look likely to take on roles from day one on their teams, but perhaps not big ones. They all look like role players at this point, who will likely be more important to their actual teams than Fantasy owners.

The big upside play in this group is obviously Len, a project center with injury concerns who was nonetheless in the conversation for the top pick in the draft. Len has a lot of work to do and the Suns can ease him in with Marcin Gortat around. If Len shows he can play, however, don't be surprised if a Gortat trade opens up a spot in the starting lineup. His potential could make him worth stashing even if his play is lackluster during the first half of the season.

Sleepers

Shabazz Muhammad, F, Timberwolves: Seems destined for an extended stay in the D-League, but Chase Budinger's injury could end up giving him a shot.

Shane Larkin, G, Mavericks: Larkin has recovered from a broken ankle and is ready for the start of the season. He is third on the depth chart at point guard, though he is behind a couple of players with some injury concerns.

Steven Adams, C, Thunder: High-upside big man, but unlikely to make an impact this season. He might be worth snagging in dynasty formats as the eventual replacement for Kendrick Perkins.

Giannis Antetokounmpo, F, Bucks: He's long and athletic -- that pretty much covers what we know for sure about Antetokounmpo. He played at a lower-level league in the Greek league last season -- and is very raw -- but the Bucks expect him to be a stat-sheet stuffer down the road.

Nerlens Noel, C, 76ers: Noel is recovering from knee surgery and is likely to miss a big chunk of his rookie season. Still, the 76ers are bad enough that he'll get plenty of minutes when he's ready.

Archie Goodwin, G, Suns: Goodwin was one of the top recruits in the country coming out of high school, but his freshman season didn't blow people away. Still, he's a talented scorer on a bad team with a knack for drawing free throws, and he could emerge as a starter later in the season.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Lakers SG Kobe Bryant scores team-high 22 vs. Grizzlies
by Jeff Borzello | College Basketball Writer
(1:11 am ET) Lakers shooting guard Kobe Bryant scored a team-high 22 points on 5 of 15 shooting, including 2 of 5 shooting from three-point range, in his team's 99-93 loss to the Grizzlies Wednesday.

Bryant sank all 10 of his free throws to help boost his scoring total on a night where he struggled with a low shooting percentage for the second time in three games. He only managed to pick up four rebounds and two assists in 35 minutes in the loss, the team's third straight. The Lakers will look to get back on track Friday against the Timberwolves.


Grizzlies C Marc Gasol doubles up vs. Lakers
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(1:02 am ET) Grizzlies center Marc Gasol scored 19 points on 5 of 10 shooting from the field and 9 of 10 shooting from the free-throw line while grabbing 11 rebounds in his team's 99-93 win over the Lakers Wednesday.

Gasol has picked up double-doubles in three of his last four games, but he was unable to rack up 30 points for the third straight game Wednesday. He did fill out his line with four assists, three blocks and two steals in his 37 minutes of action. The Grizzlies take a three-game winning streak into Portland Friday.


Suns PF Markieff Morris doubles up vs. Nuggets
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:57 am ET) Suns power forward Markieff Morris scored 15 points on 6 of 17 shooting while grabbing 10 rebounds in his team's 120-112 win over the Nuggets Wednesday.

Morris' double-double was the third of the season but his first since Nov. 4 and he also managed season highs in two categories, racking up seven assists and four blocks in 36 minutes. He also picked up three steals in the well-rounded effort. The Suns have another date with the Nuggets scheduled for Friday.


Nuggets C Timofey Mozgov posts 18-13 line vs. Suns
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:52 am ET) Nuggets center Timofey Mozgov scored 18 points on 8 of 13 shooting while grabbing 13 rebounds in his team's 120-112 loss to the Suns Wednesday.

Mozgov has started to turn up his performance over the last six games, delivering five double-digit scoring performances and three double-doubles during that stretch. However, the Nuggets weren't able to come through with a sixth straight win. The center also managed three steals and two blocks in 32 minutes. He'll match up with the Suns again Friday.


Thunder G Jeremy Lamb delivers sharpshooting line vs. Jazz
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:42 am ET) Thunder guard Jeremy Lamb scored 21 points on 7 of 8 shooting, including 3 of 3 shooting from three-point range, in his team's 97-82 win over the Jazz Wednesday.

Lamb played just 24 minutes off the bench but nearly led the team in scoring in Wednesday's win, easily eclipsing his previous best of 58.8 percent shooting from the field. However, he did foul out in the game while also racking up four rebounds, three steals, two assists and one block. The Thunder snapped a six-game losing streak with the win, and they'll look to build upon Wednesday's success Friday against the Knicks.


Jazz SF Gordon Hayward scores team-high 24 vs. Thunder
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:33 am ET) Jazz small forward Gordon Hayward scored a team-high 24 points on 8 of 15 shooting in his team's 97-82 loss to the Thunder Wednesday.

Hayward delivered a strong shooting performance but also turned the ball over eight times, doubling his previous season high in turnovers in the loss. On a positive note, he did manage to tally eight rebounds, four steals and three assists in 36 minutes. The Jazz will be looking to end a four-game losing streak Saturday against the Clippers.


Magic forward Kyle O'Quinn comes off the bench
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:09 am ET) Magic forward Kyle O'Quinn was able to return from an ankle injury on Wednesday.

O'Quinn injured himself during the team's first game, and has not played since. He was able to put in 12 minutes of work, scoring six points. O'Quinn also managed to pull down seven rebounds. 


Rockets' James Harden takes career-high 31 shots Wednesday
by R.J. White | CBSSports.com
(12:07 am ET) Rockets shooting guard James Harden scored a team-high 26 points on just 10 of 31 shooting in his team's 102-89 win over the Kings Wednesday.

Harden's 31 shots eclipsed his previous career high of 28 shots, set late last season, but he suffered from a bout of inaccuracy in the win to fall short of 30 points for the first time in three games. He also managed to fill up his line with eight assists, seven rebounds, three blocks and two steals in 37 minutes. The Rockets take a three-game winning streak into Friday's game against the Clippers.


Magic forward Tobias Harris able to return from injury
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(12:06 am ET) Magic forward Tobias Harris was able to return from injury on Wednesday.

Harris was dealing with a calf injury. Harris injured himself on Friday, and was unable to play until Wednesday. He started the game, playing 30 minutes. Harris scored 16 points and added 10 rebounds during the contest. 


Magic guard Evan Fournier returns from injury on Wednesday
by Chris Cwik | CBSSports.com
(11/26/2014) Magic guard Evan Fournier was able to return from quad injury on Wednesday.

Fournier managed to start, playing 31 minutes. He scored 10 points in his return, shooting 4-9 from the field. He also pulled down two rebounds. 


 
 
 
Top Videos
Rankings