I’ve been on hiatus, probably since about a month to go in the 2017-18 season. I blame myself, and my schedule, for not being loyal to my readers. My league had ended, as I ranted about in my last piece, but yours probably didn’t. For those looking for the league winners I had been providing throughout the season, I apologize. For those who are reading my column for the first time ever here in July, I applaud and welcome you to Beyond the Glory.

For those who don’t remember, I was literally two game 7 wins away from being the only Razzball writer to have the Rockets and Celtics in the finals, and then I got neither. I would have basked in that glory for at least a year, but being bold only brought me close to brilliance. Either way, I am back and will be knocking out more content in the offseason, before going back to weekly columns for your reading pleasure.

Oh, the offseason. The start of the NBA season is many months away, yet something inside of me is far too excited for fantasy basketball. Call it what you will. We are the midst of the baseball season and fantasy football prep has begun in earnest. With all of this going on, though, I come home at night and turn on the NBA Summer League. I don’t know why, but my remote leads me there. The only reasonable explanation is that I am pumped for the new draft class. I am pumped to see free agent signings and I am pumped for LeB… I promised myself I wouldn’t go there. I am going to hold strong, because in truth, I’m not excited for anything but basketball, fantasy basketball, and Kevin Knox (more on him later) for 2018-19. So let’s get into the recent draftees and who they may compare to this upcoming year, giving us some pre-pre-preseason sleepers.

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The NBA is now a year-round drama, but the last 24 hours have been nuts! LeBron James finally made his decision and will join Laker Nation, whose fans are preparing for the next chapter in their colorful existence. Not only do we get to see LeBron adorn the sacred Purple and Gold, but the theatrics of LaVar Ball and Lance Stephenson, which could simulate the experiences of the Ultimate Fighter Challenge. It wasn’t all about Lebron, though. Kevin Durant, Paul George, and Chris Paul committed to the Warriors, Thunder, and Rockets respectively. The West now hoards all the talent, while the East looks to be the land of opportunity.

Free agency dominoes have, and will continue to fall over the upcoming weeks, but don’t let that distract you from another piece of the NBA machine: SUMMER LEAGUE.

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So here we are. Time for those Dynasty Deep Dive rookie rankings that you have been clamoring for. The draft has come and gone and we now know the landing spots for those who had their names called out on draft night. In addition, many of the undrafted rookies were fortunate enough to find themselves a home as well.

Remember that these rankings are for the entirety of a player’s career arc, not for 2018/19 redraft leagues. They are also representative of my own thoughts and not of anyone else at Razzball. We all have our personal biases and preferences in how we evaluate the long term future of NBA players. As always, I am happy to answer questions. Find me on Twitter @storytelling41.

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Welcome back Razzball Nation. What a night the draft was. A true testament to Adam Silver and the NBA for putting on a fantastic spectacle which had more twists and turns than a South American mountain road. One clear message that came from current and former players was that work is only the beginning. For this article, I have also taken a twist and turn, as I bring an email dialogue between myself and Steve Connell about the draft. Steve works hard researching high school and college basketball and provides inspiration for many of the Dynasty Deep Dive articles. Two minds are better than one, right?

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SANTA’s COMING!!

We are on the eve of the 2018 NBA draft and what better way to celebrate than to bring you a Razzball mock draft special. Joining me in exploring where we believe teams will go with the first 20 picks in this draft are Razzball’s very own Brent ‘The Fantasy Dick’ Carlson and one of the Dynasty deep Dive research team members Brett Nelson.

We start off talking about the minefield of potential trades that might affect the draft and then delve into who we think each team will take from picks 1-20, finally finishing off with 6 guys who we feel might well be a fantasy steal in the long term.

Sit back, enjoy, and let us know where you see picks going in the draft and who you want your team to draft. Don’t forget to join us next week for a post-draft reaction and whose stock rose and fell with their landing spots.

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It’s that time of year again Razzball Nation! The pre-draft edition of the Dynasty Deep Dive rookie rankings, and what a treat I have for you, as I am not only sharing with you my rankings, but the rankings of two of the great minds that do a lot of research and discussion behind the scenes that inspire the Dynasty Deep Dive articles. I can’t stress enough how influential these brothers from different mothers have been, as they scout games, debate, and open my eyes to different paths of thinking. Not only that, but our leader here at Razzball basketball has dropped in to give a few of his thoughts and top 15.

For those of you that are new to Dynasty Deep Dive, these rankings are for the entirety of a career. Therefore, should not be used for redraft leagues. It’s also important to consider that these are pre-draft, so landing spots will shake things up. I will make the necessary adjustments for my post-draft rankings, so keep an eye out for those. 

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The combine has now come and gone, and a whole set of rumors have come with it. We now have speculation that the Celtics may have interest in moving up to acquire the services of man child Mo Bamba, the Nuggets are willing to part with the 14th overall pick for the two years/$26 million left on Kenneth Faried’s contract, Luka Doncic is gobbling cheeseburgers and piling on the pounds faster than a John Wall coast-to-coast dunk, and of course both Michael Porter Jr. and Trae Young declaring that they are the best player in the draft class.

NBA Twitter is flush with draft big boards right about now, but as I have stated numerous times, it is important to remember that each team has a vital role to play when it comes to developing the players. Would Ben Simmons, Jayson Tatum, or Donovan Mitchell have had the same kind of season on other franchises? My guess is no because each player landed in the ideal landing spot for their development and were utilized to maximize their potential. Fact of the matter is that landing spot is HUGE! 

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The results of countless prayers have been tallied, as the draft order for the upcoming NBA draft was revealed on May 15th. It appears the “lucky underwear” that Josh Jackson was sporting paid off big, as the Suns secured their very first number 1 overall pick in franchise history.

So who were the big winners and losers? The Sacramento Kings were positioned to select at No. 7, but with a 6% chance, defied the odds and ended up with the No. 2 pick. Let the Doncic vs Ayton debate commence. Or, since we are talking about the Kings, can we rule out the possibility of incompetence?

Below, I will speculate on how the first seven picks may play out in the upcoming draft. Next week, I will look at the final seven.

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