We are getting close to the NBA season starting. Less than a week away, in fact.
We’ve seen most rookies play at least once, so we are getting a bit better of an idea of how they may look next to their new teammates in a more talented environment.
PRIMETIME: Seven players set for big breakout seasons
BIG VALUE: Eight potential end-of-draft steals
So, let’s take a look at the top rookies for Yahoo standard fantasy basketball leagues.
LaMelo Ball, Charlotte Hornets
Ball has been extremely fun to watch in his first preseason games, despite coming off the bench.
The shooting is rough, but he is going to get opportunities and he is likely to rack up fantasy points this season in Charlotte as the main attraction.
James Wiseman, Golden State Warriors
Wiseman is one rookie we haven’t seen play yet, as he recovers from COVID-19.
We may not see him opening night, but eventually the Warriors plan to start him and if he gets to 30 minutes a night, he will leap ahead of Ball as the number fantasy points rookie.
For now, the Warriors may be cautious with him, so I have him down at two.
Killian Hayes, Detroit Pistons
So much about fantasy production is about the opportunity.
Hayes is the Pistons starting point guard and he is going to get ample opportunity this season.
Casey said he saw some big developments from Killian Hayes from Game 1 to 2. Mentioned the missed shots, but was impressed with lower turnovers.
— James Edwards III (@JLEdwardsIII) December 15, 2020
There will be growing pains, but he improved from game one to game two and I like the usage and assist chances he will get as the starting point guard.
Isaac Okoro, Cleveland Cavaliers
Okoro may be the only other rookie who nails down a starting job early on.
He had an explosion in his first preseason game, scoring 16 fourth-quarter points, and his ability to lock down defensively gives him a leg up to be the Cavs starting small forward on opening night.
He is not a massive accumulator, but the minutes should be there.
— FOX Sports Cleveland (@FOXSportsCLE) December 16, 2020
Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves
Edwards has looked rough around the edges so far.
He is coming off the beach, and with Malik Beasley and Josh Okogie ahead of him, it may be a while before Edwards tastes the starting five.
His game is quite incomplete, so despite being the number one pick, he is a long way from being my number one rookie.
Aleksej Pokuševski, Oklahoma City Thunder
Unlike Okoro, Pokuševski doesn’t need big minutes to put up good numbers.
The seven-foot‘ point guard’ is going to be in the rotation immediately and can block shots and has no hesitation in launching from three. If he gets to start at all, Poku could rise up this list.
I have no idea what Aleksej Pokusevski will be in the NBA. He's so incredibly raw. I do know that a 7'3'' guy hitting pullup triples when the defender goes under the screen is a lot of fun! pic.twitter.com/dyDnssAZ1j
— Keith Smith (@KeithSmithNBA) December 13, 2020
Deni Avdija, Washington Wizards
Avdija may be an opening night start for the Wizards, but it does seem unlikely that they will give him 30 minutes a night out of the gate.
He was perfect from the field in his first preseason contest, but shooting accuracy has never been a strength of his, so that’s a little fluky.
Let’s see if he can lock down the starting job and then we can move him up.
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