Alright, my word of the day has been used, and I can mark that off my to-do list. See ya next week! What’s that, Son? You want me to write an article or else you’re taking away my pop tarts privilege? Son-of-a… OK. With thieving prominent on my mind right now, I bring you none other than the streamer of the week who will snatch you more balls than Son when he plays at the YMCA: Devin Vassell!
Availability: As the 11th overall pick in the 2020 draft to the San Antonio Spurs, Vassell has been largely overlooked by fantasy managers. He’s available in 95% of Yahoo leagues, and basically went undrafted except in the deepest of leagues, so he’ll be available for just about everybody reading this article.
Steals: In terms of per-36 rankings, Vassell’s fourth in the NBA in steals with 2.7 snatches. The same goes for the per-100 possessions ranking. If you went Center/Forward heavy or punted steals in the draft, Vassell is available everywhere or can be acquired for cheap, and he’s putting out top efficiency numbers in steals.
3-Pointers: He’s shooting .415 from beyond the three, which puts him in the top 50 in the NBA in terms of percentage. On a per-36 basis, he’d be shooting five treys per game and landing two of them, which would be in the top 125 players right now. Between the 3-point shooting and the steals, I get the sense that we could call Vassell a [pinky to mouth] 3 AND D PLAYER.
Usage: Here’s the rub. 13%. Yuck. But — and it’s a James Harden coming out of lockdown-sized but — Vassell is a rookie. He’s behind third-year man Lonnie Walker on the depth chart, but Walker doesn’t exactly shine defensively (0.6 steals per game, 0.5 blocks per game), and Vassell is already out-rebounding and out-assisting Walker while playing 10 minutes less per game. Vassell’s three-point shooting is superior to Walker’s, which gives the Spurs reason to give Vassell more run in the future for scoring and defensive lineups. If this keeps up, it won’t be long until Vassell is getting the superior minutes in the lineup, which would skyrocket his defensive stats.
FG%: [hides face] It’s worse than Ricky Rubio. Like, I mean, old Ricky Rubio. But again, you’re probably looking for 3-and-D because you punted these categories in the draft in favor of a big team. You knew the 3-and-D players would be available in 95% of leagues, right? So while your big men are dunking buckets faster than the ice bucket challenge, you can let Vassell be on your B-team and shoot .370 while snagging 1-2 steals a game. And in case you didn’t read the previous 300 words, Vassell’s played like 11 games in the NBA. That FG% will improve a bit. Because if it doesn’t…well, he doesn’t play, and you drop him and move on to the next streamer.
Fantasy Takeaway: Small sample size, sure. But coach Gregg Popovich could use a bit more defense on the Spurs, and Vassell provides a huge upside in that category. Rotowire is already projecting Vassell to take the starting role in the next few weeks, which will boost his value immensely while demolishing his availability. If Vassell takes or even splits the starting gig, that’s a fine no-cost 3-and-D player for your steal-deficient team. Just don’t start him on Sunday when you’re down FG% until we see some more consistency. If you’re in a dynasty, he’s definitely worth a speculative grab.
What’s your take on Devin Vassell? Drop it down in the comments, and have a great day!