Welcome to draft season Razzball Nation. This week, I present the results of an industry mock draft in which I was fortunate enough to get some great basketball minds to kindly offer their time to bring you some extra research material for your dynasty leagues.

Before I begin, I want to give a shout out to Steve Connell, who designed the awesome new Dynasty Deep Dive logo. Check it out above. It is literally fire.

The Format:

Slow draft on Fantrax, as we had participants from the USA, Canada, Phillipines, Australia, New Zealand, and of course England. Standard 9-Cat H2H with the ability to keep everybody at no round cost. Total of 18 roster spots.

Roster Construction:

PG, SG, G, SF, PF, F, C, C, UT, UT, UT with 7 bench spots

Participants:

Name Site/Role
Craig Bozic Razzball – Dynasty Deep Dive/Razzball Podcast
Stan Son Razzball Basketball
Kostas Oikonomou Razzball – Writer
Brett Nelson Razzball – Writer/Dynasty Deep Dive Research Team
Josh Lloyd Basketball Monster Lead Analyst/Locked on Fantasy Podcast Host
Adrian Benjamins Hoop Ball – Dynasty Podcast Host
Zach Bodine Hoop ball – Dynasty Analyst
Jay Collins Hoop Ball – Contributor
Jordan Schultz Hashtag Basketball – Dynasty Podcast Co-Host
Sam Macey Hashtag Basketball – Dynasty Podcast Co-Host
Steve Connell Dynasty Deep Dive – Research Team
Patrick Laroco NxtLvLFntasyNBA – Co Founder

Dynasty drafts have the most subjective valuations and results often differ from redraft or keeper leagues. Some teams go all-in to win from the start. Others try to find a balance between winning now and looking towards the future. The rest choose to build a solid, young foundation, knowing full well they won’t be competitive in the first few seasons, but could develop into powerhouse. There are examples of each of these strategies from different owners, so factor in the motivations of the owners when deciding whether a pick was successful or not.

My Strategy:

I like to keep an open mind when going into an inaugural draft, but generally speaking, in season one I like to find value that will likely make me a contender two to three years down the road. My theory is that there are a few people in every league looking to go all-in season one. I am never willing to sell off long-term value for immediate satisfaction and thus find it tough to keep up with the Jones’s in the inaugural season. Ultimately, I am looking to construct a team that can build value season after season, looking for guys who could reach their potential by year three.

The Results

Round 1:

Zach Bodhane Anthony Davis PF/C
Adrian Benjamins Karl Anthony-Towns C
Pat Laroco James Harden PG/SG
Kostas Oikonomou Giannis Antetokounpo PG/SG/SF
Steve Connell Nikola Jokic PF/C
Craig Bozic Joel Embiid C
Josh Lloyd Kevin Durant SF/PF
Jordan Schultz Ben Simmons PG/PF
Same Macey Kawhi Leonard SG/SF
Jay Collins Donovan Mitchell PG/SG
Stan Son Victor Oladipo SG
Brett Nelson Lebron James SF/PF

My Pick:

Once James Harden was taken at number 3, leaving Giannis Antetokounmpo the likely selection at 4, it sparked a conversation between Steve and myself where he was debating between the immediate elite all-around production of Kevin Durant or the younger Ben Simmons. I was thinking Nikola Jokic would be there at 5, so I was immediately put on tilt when Steve threw a curveball and took the 23 year old play-making center from the Nuggets. That left me with four options: take the 30-year old KD, injury risk Joel Embiid, punt TOs, 3s, and FT% Ben Simmons, or take the chance on Kawhi Leonard returning to elite level production. GO BIG OR GO HOME! Yeah, it is a HUGE risk, especially for my first overall pick, but grabbing an elite center who contributes in everything and doesn’t hurt my FT% was the way I decided to go. Sure, he might only play 60-70 games, but I am hoping Embiid can leave the injury prone tag behind. In hindsight, maybe Kawhi Leonard should have been the selection, as I am bullish that he returns to San Antonio form, but at just 24 years of age, the boom or bust route of Embiid was the chosen path.

Round 2

Brett Nelson Stephen Curry PG
Stan Son Paul George SG/SF/PF
Jay Collins Russell Westbrook PG
Sam Macey Devin Booker PG/SG
Jordan Schultz Damian Lillard PG
Josh Lloyd Jimmy Butler SG/SF
Craig Bozic Kyrie Irving PG/SG
Steve Connell Andre Drummond C
Kostas Oikonomou Jrue Holiday PG
Pat Loroco Kemba Walker PG
Adrian Benjimins Luka Doncic PG/SG/SF
Zach Bodhane Myles Turner PF/C

Could they fall? This is dynasty after all. Nope, of course they didn’t. Damian Lillard and Paul George were the dream targets here, but in my heart I knew they were not coming back to me. But in my head Jimmy Butler would. Nope, denied faster than Nate Robinson attempting to score a layup with Dwight Howard waiting in the paint. I wanted an elite level PG here, having already nailed myself an elite center and I once again decided to play Russian roulette regarding health and selected Kyrie Irving, another player with first round upside. In drafts I have participated in, it’s a long wait if you miss out on a PG in the first three rounds. After watching two preseason games, Kyrie does look to be back, but I did make the pick before the preseason started. I love an Embiid/Kyrie one-two punch, especially given they are still just 24 & 26 years old, but the big question is in regards to health. Will their bodies remain durable enough to make them successful long-term dynasty investments?

Elsewhere, we already see certain strategies playing out. Brett felt there was too much production to ignore a Curry/Lebron turn, despite investing in two 30+ somethings. A Durant/Butler partnership is also looking formidable, especially since both are a tad younger. We also saw the first rookie off the board in Luka Doncic, who coupled with Karl-Anthony Towns could be the makings of a team thinking a little more long term.

Round 3

Zach Bodhane Bradley Beal SG
Adrian Benjimins John Collins PF/C
Pat Loroco Clint Capela C
Kostas Oikonomou Rudy Gobert C
Steve Connell Jayson Tatum SF/PF
Craig Bozic Deandre Ayton C
Josh Lloyd John Wall PG
Jordan Schultz Draymond Green PF/C
Sam Macey CJ McCollum PG/SG
Jay Collins Chris Paul PG
Stan Son Khris Middleton SF
Brett Nelson Jamaal Murray PG/SG

At the top of my wish list was Jayson Tatum, but once again Steve Connell proved to be the heart breaker and took him one pick before my selection. I kind of expected this because, if there is a guy who knows me inside out, it’s my brother from a different mother. So here we have rookie number two off the board, DeAndre Ayton, who I am more than happy to take at pick 30 in a dynasty draft. Ayton might have a hard time pushing top 30 value season one, but once again I am looking for upside for season two and beyond and feel that the floor, even in his rookie season, is high enough for me to still not be completely out of the running season one. He certainly has the physical gifts and opportunity to make a serious impact right away. Even in redraft leagues, I feel the floor is high enough to warrant a pick in the 50’s, so I have no qualms about selecting a guy 30th overall who has second round upside. It was nice to start the draft with two centers who will contribute across the board without killing my FT %.

Elsewhere, Adrian’s intentions got more clear as he took John Collins, a very trendy pick this draft season, signifying his intention to draft young with a long-term outlook. Jay locks up his guards, drafting three PG eligible players with his first three picks in Donovan Mitchell, Russell Westbrook, and now Chris Paul. I will never question Paul’s abilities to contribute in fantasy basketball, but at 33 years old and missing significant time in 3 of the last 5 seasons with the Rockets saying they will monitor his minutes to keep him fresh for the playoffs, count me out of wanting anything to do with investing a premium dynasty pick on him.

Round 4

Brett Nelson Trae Young PG
Stan Son Tobias Harris SF/PF
Jay Collins Kevin Love PF
Sam Macey Klay Thompson SG/SF
Jordan Schultz Kristaps Porzingis PF/C
Josh Lloyd Taurean Prince SF
Craig Bozic Lauri Markennan PF
Steve Connell Jonathan Isaac SF/PF
Kostas Oikonomou Otto Porter Jr SF
Patrick Laroco Eric Bledsoe PG/SG
Adrian Benjimins Jaren Jackson Jr PF
Zach Bodhane Gary Harris SG

Lauri Markkanen was my target and the 7-foot sharp shooter is exactly who I got. The best 7-foot shooter to come out of the NCAA, the sky is the limit for the Bulls power forward, especially with a commitment to add strength and what I believe will become an increasingly improved defensive game. I doubt it will ever be elite, though. Some people compare him to Dirk Nowitzki, but are they really so dumbfounded? Let’s compare their per-36 rookie numbers:

Name Pts FG% FT% 3PT RBD STL BLK ASS
Dirk 14.4 41% 77% 0.5 6.1 1.1 1.0 1.8
Lauri 18.4 43% 84% 2.6 9.1 0.7 0.7 1.4

Now, I am not saying Lauri is going to have a Hall-of-Fame career, but it’s certainly food for thought.

Elsewhere, I was hoping to grab both Jonathan Isaac and Trae Young with my next two picks, but both were selected by Brett and Steve respectively. Can’t have them all, right? The Kristaps Porzingis stash comes into play here and Adrian now pretty much put a stamp on his draft strategy, as he selected the long term upside in Jaren Jackson Jr.

Round 5:

Zach Bodhane Josh Richardson SG/SF
Adrian Benjimins Dejounte Murray PG
Patrick Laroco Robert Covington SF/PF
Kostas Oikonomou Aaron Gordon SF/PF
Steve Connell Kyle Lowry PG
Crag Bozic Lonzo Ball PG
Josh Lloyd Jarrett Allen C
Jordan Schultz Wendell Carter Jr C
Sam Macey Dennis Smith Jr PG
Jay Collins DeMar DeRozan SG/SF
Stan Son Brandon Ingram SF
Brett Nelson Dario Saric PF

There is a lot of hate for Lonzo Ball, but I am huge believer in the abilities of the Big Baller and, given the minutes, is a triple-double threat on any given night. Sure, the percentages are questionable, but the lack of volume from the free throw line won’t kill me. Let’s not forgot that he shot over 50% in college, so there’s hope for improvement. Ball enters the season coming off surgery and spending the majority of last season on the shelf, but before the critics judge him too hard, let’s remember how young Lonzo is and that his rookie season was coming off a one-and-done freshman year at UCLA. There is a supreme amount of talent here, and who better to mentor him than former NBA champ, Rajon Rondo, and the King.

Dejounte Murray has picked up a lot of steam this off season with the departure of Tony Parker, but I fail to buy into the hype. Sure, the defensive numbers are nice, but I just don’t see the offensive upside, as he is neither a good shooter nor a high level passer. His per-36 numbers last year were 13.5 points and just 4.8 assists, with just 0.2 treys on 44% shooting (which is low for someone who shoots so few treys) and 70% from the line. San Antonio is also a place where point guards don’t put up elite fantasy numbers. In addition, I think Derrick White will eat into that upside. The hype is there, but he won’t find himself on any of my teams.

Round 6:

Brett Nelson Jaylen Brown SG/SF
Stan Son Markelle Fultz PG/SG
Jay Collins Marc Gasol C
Sam Macey Al Horford PF/C
Jordan Schultz Gordan Hayward SG/SF
Josh Lloyd Lamarcus Aldridge PF/C
Craig Bozic D’Angelo Russell PG/SG
Steve Connell Mike Conley PG
Kostas Oikonomou Kris Dunn PG
Patrick Laroco Steven Adams C
Adrian Benjimins Mo Bamba C
Zach Bodhane Nikola Vucevic C

Believe it or not, D’Angelo Russell is still just 22 years old. Before getting hurt last year, he was flirting with top 30 production. Sure, the percentages are unlikely to ever be elite, but there is plenty of upside to consider this as a potential long term bargain. In the short term, it’s going to be interesting to see how a Russell/Spencer Dinwiddie partnership takes shape, but Russell is the guy I want and it’s not close. Oh, Brooklyn plays at the leagues fastest tempo, so even 28 minutes a game leaves plenty of room for production. If you can handle the streaky shooting, I think you can do a lot worse than the former number two overall draft pick.

Round 7:

Zach Bodhane Ricky Rubio PG
Adrian Benjimins Shai Gilgeous-Alexander PG
Patrick Laroco Julius Randle PF/C
Kostas Oikonomou Zach Lavine PG
Steve Connell DeMarcus Cousins C
Craig Bozic Will Barton SG/SF
Josh Lloyd De’Aaron Fox PG
Jordan Schultz Andrew Wiggins SG/SF
Sam Macey Jonas Valanciunus C
Jay Collins Jordan Bell PF/C
Stan Son Willy Cauley-Stein C
Brett Nelson Marvin Bagley III PF

Although 27 years old, I couldn’t ignore the value of Will Barton in the 7th round. I was in need of a small forward eligible player and I can see him putting up a 17/5/5 season with good percentages. Sure, the situation in Denver is crowded, but it won’t be Barton that suffers. I can see sustained 4th round production over the course of the next few seasons. I expect more of the same from the 6 year veteran who is one of the most unheralded and undervalued players in fantasy.

I want zero part of Andrew Wiggins in fantasy basketball, a one-trick pony (points) who is a negative contributor everywhere else. I get the notion that he could be on the verge of a breakout season with Jimmy Butler likely gone, but count me out on thinking that will boost his production. Fools gold with name value. This round also saw DeMarcus Cousins come off the board in what is likely a stash scenario. I want zero part of Cousins or any player coming off an Achilles injury for that matter, but at that price, it’s potential first round production in future seasons at the expense of him sitting year one.

Round 8:

Brett Nelson Mitchell Robinson C
Stan Son Bam Adebayo C
Jay Collins Serge Ibaka PF/C
Sam Macey Blake Griffin PF/C
Jordan Schultz Caris Levert SF
Josh Lloyd Kyle Anderson SF
Craig Bozic Malik Monk SG
Steve Connell DeAndre Jordan C
Kostas Oikonomou Jabari Parker SF/PF
Patrick Laroco Enes Kanter C
Adrian Benjimins Kevin Knox SF/PF
Zach Bodhane Larry Nance Jr PF

A Dynasty Deep Dive post without a mention of Malik Monk? Not on your nelly, mister. Having analysed all the other draft information out there, I am clearly the high guy on Monk’s talents. Am I expecting him to jump out the gate this season as a superstar? No, but he can easily play himself into top 100 redraft value and a whole lot more in dynasty territory after a couple of months into the season, especially with the Hornets “12 second uptempo offense” looking legit. Monk finished the final month of last season with 20 points, 4 assists, 4 boards, tons of threes on 48% shooting from the field and 100% from the line in 24 MPG. I am not naive enough to expect that, but it is a surefire demonstration of the talents of the former Kentucky star. The poor defense will limit minutes initially, but if/when Kemba Walker moves in free agency or otherwise, you want this guy, especially as Nicolas Batum is playing the 3 this year and Jeremy Lamb doesn’t possess the upside of Monk.

Round 9:

Zach Bodhane Nikola Mirotic PF
Adrian Benjimins Collin Sexton PG
Patrick Laroco Jusuf Nurkic C
Kostas Oikonomou Buddy Hield SG
Steve Connell Nicolas Batum SF
Craig Bozic Harry Giles PF/C
Josh Lloyd Lou Williams* PG/SG
Jordan Schultz Rondae Hollis-Jefferson PF
Sam Macey Kyle Kuzma PF
Jay Collins Hassan Whiteside C
Stan Son Tyus Jones PG
Brett Nelson Josh Jackson SG/SF

Harry ‘Not Styles’ Giles is another trendy name that has been gaining momentum this offseason, after an impressive Summer League. Dave Joerger has stated that the Kings will roll out the kids this year and will play to the uptempo style that fits their personnel: De’Aaron Fox, Marvin Bagley, Harry Giles, and WCS. I expect the Kings to continue to bring along Giles slowly this year, maybe even taking a half season before really returning fantasy value, but the long term upside for an athletic big with an excellent all-around game is too great to ignore, especially outside the top 100 in a dynasty league.

Lou Williams was an auto-pick, which was as a result of Fantrax having issues with their email notifications that day.

Round 10:

Brett Nelson Michael Porter Jr SF/PF
Stan Son Willy Hernongomez C
Jay Collins Paul Millsap PF/C
Sam Macey Jeff Teague PG
Jordan Schultz Frank Ntilikina PG
Josh Lloyd Bogdan Bogdanovic SG/SF
Craig Bozic Evan Fournier SG
Steve Connell Joe Ingles SG/SF
Kostas Oikonomou Elfrid Payton PG
Patrick Laroco Harrison Barnes SF/PF
Adrian Benjimins Mario Herzonja SG/SF
Zach Bodhane Luke Kennard PG/SG

This pick felt safe, solid, and dirty. Evan Fournier is not traditionally a guy I would be target, but after swinging for the fences with my previous two picks, I decided safe and boring was the way to go. Still just 25 years old, and given the lack of real firepower that the Magic possess, the French native should at least hold his value for the upcoming seasons, as well as provide some much needed stability for my team. I wasn’t singing from the hill tops after this pick, but I wasn’t crying over spilled milk either.

Michael Porter Jr. might be the most boom/bust guy in this draft. The upside is truly phenomenal and, if available, would have considered picking him myself in this territory. There are concerns over his health, which is the reason he fell in the draft and will likely see him miss his rookie season. The 13 teams that passed over him could be Denver’s gain.

Round 11:

Zach Bodhane Cedi Osman SF
Adrian Benjimins Zach Collins PF/C
Patrick Laroco Malcolm Brogdon PG/SG
Kostas Oikonomou Montrezl Harrell PF/C
Steve Connell Miles Bridges SF/PF
Craig Bozic Jakob Poeltl C
Josh Lloyd Brook Lopez C
Jordan Schultz Tim Hardway Jr SG/SF
Sam Macey Bobby Portis PF/C
Jay Collins Kelly Olynyk PF/C
Stan Son Spencer Dinwiddie PG
Brett Nelson Goran Dragic PG

I was fully expecting Son to pounce on Jakob Poeltl in the previous round, but with Son hoping to see his Willy Free’d, I was pleased to scoop up his sloppy seconds and obtain the 22 year old who finished 12th in the NBA in blocks last season. With Pau Gasol soon to be drawing his vast pension, Poeltl will have plenty of opportunity to build on those defense stats while working on improving his offensive game. The FG% is high, but the amount of looks is low. I am not expecting a starters workload anytime soon, but at 22 years old with a high floor due to his defensive prowess, I felt good with selecting him here.

Round 12:

Brett Nelson Josh Hart SG
Stan Son Jerami Grant SF/PF
Jay Collins JJ Reddick SG
Sam Macey Terry Rozier PG
Jordan Schultz Domantas Sabonis PF
Josh Lloyd Tyreke Evans PG/SG/SF
Craig Bozic OG Anunoby SG/SF
Steve Connell Mikal Bridges SG/SF
Kostas Oikonomou Kentavious Caldwell-Pope SG
Patrick Laroco Fred Van Fleet PG
Adrian Benjimins Skal Labbisierre PF
Zach Bodhane Jeremy lamb SG

I’ve always admired the real life skill set of OG Anunoby ever since watching him make Jamal Murray look like an extra from the Let it Rain scene in Along Came Polly during the NCAA Tournament. In Kawhi Leonard, a player who had a similar skill coming out of college, OG has a mentor to help hone his craft. We have seen the skill on the defensive end, but will the offensive game to catch up? At this price, I don’t mind finding out, especially since the Raptors look to be one season away from a complete rebuild.

Round 13:

Zach Bodhane Elie Okobo PG
Adrian Benjimins De’Anthony melton PG
Patrick Laroco Reggie Bullock SG/SF
Kostas Oikonomou Kelly Oubre Jr SG/SF
Steve Connell Dwight Howard C
Craig Bozc Kent Bazemore SG/SF
Josh Lloyd Eric Gordon SG
Jordan Schultz Dennis Schroeder PG
Sam Macey Trey Burke PG
Jay Collins Darren Collison PG
Stan Son Pascal Siakam PF
Brett Nelson Derrick Favors PF/C

Time for a little more stability once again. Kent Bazemore won’t win you a league, but at this price won’t hurt you either. At 29 years old, Bazemore is easily the oldest player I’ve drafted and was another pick that made me feel dirty. The Hawks will be relying on heavy minutes from a lot of younger guys, so they will need some veteran presence. Not a pick I love and probably should have went for upside in hindsight. With that said, Bazemore will provide some threes, assists, and steals without killing me anywhere.

Round 14:

Brett Nelson Isaiah Thomas PG
Stan Son Dante Exum PG/SG
Jay Collins Avery Bradley PG/SG
Sam Macey Ivica Zubac C
Jordan Schultz Reggie Jackson PG
Josh lloyd Danilo Gallinari SF/PF
Craig Bozic Dzanan Musa SF/PF
Steve Connell Thaddeus Young SF/PF
Kostas Oikonomou TJ Warren SF
Patrick Laroco Tyler Johnson PG/SG
Adrian Benjamins Allen Crabbe SG
Zach Bodhane Cody Zeller PF/C

Back to shooting for the moon with my Dzanan Musa selection. I am a huge fan and enamored by the offensive potential of the 6′ 9″ playmaker who shows a ton of aggression with the basketball in his hand. I also like the landing spot long term, since the Nets play at the fastest pace in the league and do not have a player with his size and ball handling/playmaking abilities. There were questions regarding the ankle injury he suffered during the World Championship qualifier over the summer, but he looks confident now and has received high praise from Kenny Atkinson and his Nets teammates. With the ability to distribute the ball, score from all three levels, and play through contact, Musa is able to overcome his lack of foot speed. A fierce competitor who I am more than happy to speculate on.

Round 15:

Zach Bodhane Joe Harris SG/SF
Adrian Benjimins Michael Kidd-Gilchrist SF
Patrick Laroco Al Farouq-Aminu PF
Kostas Oikonomou Lonnie Walker IV SG/SF
Steve Connell Taj Gibson PF
Craig Bozic Delon Wright PG/SG
Josh Lloyd Patrick Beverley PG/SG
Jordan Schultz Dillon Brooks SF
Sam Macey James Johnson SF/PF
Jay Collins Alex Len C
Stan Son Trey Lyles PF
Brett Nelson Marquese Chriss PF/C

The good news regarding Delon Wright is that per-36, he posted 13.9 points, 5 assists, 5 rebounds, 1.8 steals, and 1.4 treys on 46% shooting (83% from the line). The bad news is that minutes will be difficult to come by for the 26 year old former Ute. I’m speculating that either Wright or a disgrunted Kyle Lowry get moved. Regardless, this is the area to speculate.

Round 16:

Brett Nelson Troy Brown PG/SG
Stan Son Sviatolsav Mykhailuk SG
Jay Collins Rajon Rondo PG
Sam Macey Rodney Hood SG/SF
Jordan Schultz Grayson Allen SG
Craig Bozic Marcus Smart SG
Steve Connell Carmelo Anthony PF
Kostas Oikonomou D.J Augustine PG
Patrick Laroco Kevon Looney PF
Adrian Benjimins Josh Okogie SG
Zach Bodhane Rudy Gay SF/PF

37% field goal percentage. Yuck. 73% FT percentage. Yuck. If you draft Marcus Smart, you’re certainly not doing so for the shooting. More for the steals and assists (1.5 steals and 4.8 assists in 2017). Smart is good for close to 30 minutes a game, so it’s unlikely we see a decline in the production, especially with his fierce on-court temperament and positional flexibility. Do I love Marcus Smart in fantasy? No, but in round 16 he has his place and is still just 24 years old.

Round 17:

Zach Bodhane Mo Harkless SF
Adrian Benjimins Thon Maker PF/C
Patrick Laroco Bojan Bogdanovic SF
Kotas Oikonomou E’twaun Moore SG/SF
Steve Connell Trevor Ariza SF
Craig Bozic Derrick White PG
Josh Lloyd Jeremy Lin PG
Jordan Schultz Justic Winslow SF
Sam Macey Stanley Johnson SF
Jay Collins Jerian Grant PG
Stan Son Derrick Jones Jr SF
Brett Nelson Dewayne Dedmon C

In six Summer League games, the Spurs prioritized developing Derrick White and played him at both guard positions. He didn’t disappoint, as he often looked like a man among boys, averaging 15 points a game over 24 minutes of action. The shot form looked good, the passing ability looked excellent, and he actually thrived in the skills that Dejounte Murray is lacking. White is part of the reason I am lower on Murray than most for fantasy, as well as the fact I can see the Spurs running a more point guard by committee with Murray getting the bulk of the action, rather than Murray running away with the job like most are predicting. He isn’t the biggest or most athletic guy, but his IQ is off the charts, something which we all know Pops loves.

Round 18

Brett Nelson Aaron Holiday PG
Stan Son Kostas Antetokounmpo SF
Jay Collins Ante Zizic C
Sam Macey Juancho Hernangomez SF/PF
Jordan Schultz Robert Williams C
Josh Lloyd Jae Crowder SF
Craig Bozic Omari Spellman PF
Steve Connell Danny Green SG/SF
Kostas Oikonomou Frank Jackson PG
Patrick Laroco Zhaire Smith SF
Adrian Benjimins Moritz Wagner PF/C
Zach Bodhane Nerlens Noel PF/C

I swear Son picked Kostas just so I had to type Antetokounmpo again. I certainly wouldn’t put it past my boss, that’s for sure! On a more serious note, I rounded out my draft with another rookie, Omari Spellman, who won a national championship with Villanova last year. I’m particularly impressed with his high motor, quick hands, and high efficiency from beyond the arc. Atlanta is going to be in a position to see what they have in their new guys. With Dedmon hurt to start the year and the Hawks likely to play uptempo, Spellman could develop into one of those per minute fantasy darlings that we all crave.

 

What The others said about their draft:

Brett Nelson (Razzball * Dynasty Deep Dive)

”Going into the draft with the 12th pick, I knew I was either going to get lucky or have a tough decision to make at the turn.  I didn’t get lucky.  Rather than reach farther than I’d like on some younger players, I decided to go with the stud proven vets in Bron and Curry.  Old for dynasty, but they also aren’t going away any time soon.  I went the opposite direction the next time at the turn with getting a young, high upside PG in Jamal Murray and my top rookie Trae Young.  If anything, I will win assists and lose turnovers at this point.  Strategy for the next several rounds was to get younger players that are already producing – Dario Saric, Jaylen Brown – and more high upside ‘stash’ type picks – Mitchell Robinson, Marvin Bagley, Michael Porter Jr and Josh Jackson.  From there I went to more steady production with Goran Dragic, Derrick Favors, Isaiah Thomas (comeback!!), and Dewayne Dedmon (quietly very good last year).  Overall the team might not be the most balanced but lots of production mixed with high upside trade chips to help shape it. ”

 

Jordan Schultz (Hashtag Basketball Dynasty Podcast):

”This turned out to be one of my favorite teams I’ve drafted this off-season. I loved starting off with Ben Simmons, Damian Lillard, and Draymond Green. Simmons and Green’s elite out of position assists allowed me to fill out the rest of my roster without worrying about another point guard until round 10. This is a strategy I haven’t really tried yet, and I’m pleased with the results after ending up with Frank Ntilikina, Dennis Schroeder, and Reggie Jackson to backup Dame after focusing so much effort on my wings and bigs in the mid-rounds. This is a team that should compete for the playoffs right away, but has a bright future led by core guys like Simmons, Kristaps Porzingis, Wendell Carter Jr, Caris LeVert, Ntilikina, and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson.”

 

Steve Connell (Dynasty Deep Dive Research):

”My goal going into a draft like this is always to try to differentiate myself. You can’t force it however. My goal wasn’t to go Big-Big 1-2 but once I did my focus turned to getting a couple of young studs (Tatum, Isaac) to grow with Jokic. I knew I was going to need some luck with guards and I feel the age factor let some nice guys fall to me. After getting Lowry and Conley my plan to differentiate turned to a win now team as I already knew I had some nice young pieces and figured many would be drafting younger/unproven guys in the second half of the draft. I was quite happy to get Miles Bridges who I feel will be a great pro. Additionally, getting Boogie in the 7th could (while risky) prove to be huge for this dynasty team. I would love to play this team out.”

 

Pat Laroco (Next Level Fantasy):

”I’m the dynasty owner who’s not afraid of owning vets as my core. Basic strategy is target best player available in Round 1 then build around his strengths. 

I went after a point guard in Round 2 to support Harden. For Round 3, I wanted a young C and drafted Capella. With the age and strengths of a Harden + Kemba combo, I decided to go with Bledsoe to lock in my back court. For Round 4, I targeted RoCo for my 3-and-D guy. From Rounds 6-9, I decided to secure my front court and went after the young bigs.

For the remaining Rounds, I looked for youth and position needs of my roster.

CATS targeted: AST, 3s, STLs, REBs, FG%”

 

Son (Razzball Basketball):

”Picking at 11, you really do have to channel your inner Bruce Lee and be like water. I felt Victor Oladipo was a no-brainer, as he literally does it all and is a ripe 26 years old. I do like pairing him up with Paul George, as he literally does it all. Hey, there’s a common theme here. Early on, I was looking for the most well-rounded players that weren’t too old. I’m in love with both Doncic and Ayton and was hoping they’d be there when it came back to me. I’m not a smart man. Anyways, I ended up with a ton of wings early in the draft. Wasn’t planned. Just channeling my inner Bruce Lee. I just felt the values were too good to pass up. I went Fultz in Round 6 because he’s really good and I wanted to be with the cool kids with all their rookie picks. After that, I hammered away at big men. I did want Poeltl but felt the upside if Willy gets Freed is much higher. Free Willy!”

 

You can find me on twitter @storyetelling41, or on the weekly Razzball Basketball Podcast with Son, Viz, and Brent.

  1. Tad

    Tad says:
    (link)

    Very helpful, Craig. You and Josh are my main dynasty resources for rookies. This makes me want to start a new dynasty league.

    • Craig Bozic

      Craig Bozic says:
      (link)

      @Tad:

      Appreciate the kind words Tad. Like you I think a variety of opinions are more valuable than just one man’s mindset. Even more so in dynasty where value is so subjective from owner to owner.

  2. Kostas

    Kostas says:
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    Great recap of the draft Craig!

    Just a few words about the team I drafted and my mindset behind the selections. I was fortunate enough to land Giannis with my first pick, a guy who one can argue is worth of the no1 spot in dynasty. After that, I tried to go for young but proven players who still have room to grow, while simultaneously punting ft%. The picks I was most happy with, excluding Giannis, are Gobert, Aaron Gordon at round 5, Kris Dunn at round 6, Zach LaVine at round 7 and Montrezl Harrell at round 11. Overall, the final team looks great at REB,BLK,STL,3PT,FG% competitive at AST,PTS,TO with a punt at FT%.

    • Craig Bozic

      Craig Bozic says:
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      @Kostas:

      Thanks for sharing Kostas. Always really valuable to hear the motivations of the people picking, to get their mindset on their own motivations.

  3. Cohen says:
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    Craig, great work. Im in a roto where turnovers is not a cat. Do u have a rankings without turnovers?

    • Craig Bozic

      Craig Bozic says:
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      @Cohen:

      I don’t no, but the boys at Basketball monster allow you to edit what stats your league plays and they adjust their own rankings to accommodate whichever cats you want.

      It’s common sense and naturally obvious, but guys with a huge usage rate will get a boost because if their value not being dampened by turnovers, so your guys like westbrook, harden, Ben Simmons, Trae Young etc etc can all get a bump up, whereas guys who play more off the ball or rely heavily on efficiency will go the other way like your Otto porters, jj Reddick, Bob Covington etc etc

  4. Todd Alexander says:
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    do you have dynasty rankings set for this year mate?

    • Craig Bozic

      Craig Bozic says:
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      @Todd Alexander:

      In a vacuum, I don’t have a strict numericalist for dynasty this year, as I have a) predominantly spent my summer watching way too much video of this and next year’s draft classes and B) I think more so with dynasty you have to be willing to flow more like water as Son says to see what value comes your way in a draft.as the subjectiveness of where to reach on young or take veteren value because its fallen due to age bias will vary from draft to draft dependent on the tendencies of your league mates. Part of the motivation of this article was for readers to see examples of both.

      Strict numerical dynasty rankings also fall into the biases of the writer, some will value a win now approach more than others. The way I address it, is fundamentally at each pick I want to get the guy I feel will have the highest ceiling in year 3. This will however change from writer to writer

  5. jeffrey says:
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    12 Team 10 CAT h2h Keeper League – I have the 5th pick and am thinking o taking Jaren Jackson. The 4 ahead of me said they are taking Ayton, Doncic, WCJ, Knox.

    Who do you think I should take?

    PG: Curry/Fox
    SG: Harden(PG eligibility)/THJ (SF eligibility)/Lamb/Hart
    SF: Giannis (PF eligibility?/Hayward (SG Eligibility)
    PF: Sabonis (C eligibility)/Anderson
    C: Willie Cauley-Stien

    • Craig Bozic

      Craig Bozic says:
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      @jeffrey:

      Given the makeup of your team I would agree JJJ is the call. If not centre eligible yet he should gain the eligibility throughout the season, and given you have out of position assists in harden and giannis, I’d take JJJ over Trae, especially as blocks look the biggest deficiency, something JJJ will help immediately with even if minutes are low are out the gate

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