Just as the 2013-14 NBA season concludes and the 2014 NBA Draft approaches, I thought it would be a good time to launch into a 2013 NBA Draft review.
Widely castigated as one of the worst draft classes of all time before the season even began, a lot of factors transpired to really stifle any chances this group had to surprise.
Preseason injuries or surgeries to four out of the top six picks and six of the top 10 really hampered these rookies’ abilities to get acclimatised to their new teams and to the rigors of an NBA preseason.
With a full and healthy preseason on the cards, the opportunity to prove a lot of the doubters wrong rests solely in these players hands and this next season could be career defining for a number of the players.
We are now up to picks 11 to 20. To check out picks one through 10, click here.
11. Michael Carter-Williams, PG, Philadelphia 76ers — 70 games, PER 15.5, 35 mpg
16.7 ppg, 0.8 3pm, 6.2 rpg, 6.3 apg, 1.9 spg, 0.6 bpg, 40.5 FG%, 70.3 FT%, 3.5 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 97
The NBA and fantasy rookie of the year, MCW was in a great position to succeed, given Philadelphia’s dearth of talent and coach Brett Brown’s uptempo system. And he started out like a bull out of a gate, almost racking up a quadruple double in his first NBA game. But after the first few weeks of the season, Carter-Williams regressed to become an average fantasy option. His high turnover rate combined with horrible shooting percentages really put a dent in his overall fantasy value.
If you were in a points league, MCW would have been a great option as the counting stats were all very high, but those three big negatives hurt his stock in other types of leagues. I’m nowhere near as high on Carter-Williams as other people are, so it’s doubtful I’ll own him on any teams. In fact, I think a reduction in his stats is likely in his second NBA season.
12. Steven Adams, C, Oklahoma City Thunder — 81 games, PER 11.2, 15 mpg
3.3 ppg, 0.0 3pm, 4.1 rpg, 0.5 apg, 0.5 spg, 0.7 bpg, 50.3 FG%, 58.1 FT%, 0.9 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 304
Like a lot of young centres, Adams is going make his money grabbing boards and blocking shots. Although he didn’t get a lot of court time (inexcusable in my opinion) in his rookie season, Adams showed the ability to do just that. Five games into his NBA career, he grabbed his first double double and added three blocked shots to that tally.
He was a sneaky chance to get into the initial Red Rock 150, but after Oklahoma City GM Sam Presti announced that the team would not be amnestying Kendrick Perkins, his value in fantasy leagues will be stalled for another season. Don’t expect too much from Adams and you’ll be pleased, but if you are expecting a top 150 season, it won’t happen just yet. Don the track, Adams will be solid NBA and fantasy contributor.
13. Kelly Olynyk, C, Boston Celtics — 70 games, PER 15.2, 20 mpg
8.7 ppg, 0.6 3pm, 5.2 rpg, 1.6 apg, 0.5 spg, 0.4 bpg, 46.6 FG%, 81.1 FT%, 1.5 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 203
Although Olynyk only played 20 minutes per game, he showed that he will be a solid, if not spectacular, fantasy player for years to come. For some reason, coach Brad Stevens played stiffs like Brandon Bass and Kris Humphries over Olynyk and fellow young gun, Jared Sullinger and that hampered the value that Olynyk returned in his first season in the pros.
But, over the last two weeks of the season, Olynyk got off the leash and put together some big, big lines. In those two weeks, Olynyk was the 51st ranked fantasy player, averaging 17.0 points, 1.3 three-pointers and 7.7 rebounds in 27 minutes. In fact, in each of his last three games of the season, Olynyk went off for over 20 points and at least seven rebounds, averaging 19.3 shots per game.
A lot is in flux in Boston, with rumours of a Kevin Love acquisition and the possibility of another big arriving with the number six pick. Despite that, I think Olynyk should be owned in pretty much all leagues next season and a run like the end of April could be replicated.
14. Shabazz Muhammad, SG, Minnesota Timberwolves — 37 games, PER 13.1, 8 mpg
3.9 ppg, 0.1 3pm, 1.4 rpg, 0.2 apg, 0.2 spg, 0.0 bpg, 46.0 FG%, 65.0 FT%, 0.4 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 404
Considering his limited court time, Muhammad actually scored a decent rate. Per 36 minutes, his numbers project to 17.8 points with 6.6 rebounds, which is very solid. Coupled with his very nice 46 percent shooting, it seems like the Timberwolves may have had a player on their hands.
But, in this case, the numbers don’t tell the full story. Muhammad was not as impressive as the numbers show and the fact that he played so few games, and not all of the misses were due to injury, is a bit of a red flag. There were glimpses — a 20 point performance in February against Phoenix, an 11 points in 12 minute cameo against the Clippers, but it wasn’t consistent enough.
His upside and future seems murky at best and he doesn’t look like he’ll be fantasy relevant for the upcoming season.
15. Giannis Antetokounmpo, SG/SF, Milwaukee Bucks — 77 games, PER 10.8, 25 mpg
6.8 ppg, 0.5 3pm, 4.4 rpg, 1.9 apg, 0.8 spg, 0.8 bpg, 41.4 FG%, 68.3 FT%, 1.6 tpg
The Greek Freak made a huge splash in the NBA this season. From screen captures of his giant hands to coverage of his tweets about smoothies, people flocked to the young man from Greece with the almost unpronounceable name. And for good reason. Antetokounmpo showed tons of potential in his first season away from his homeland and seemed to understand the game a lot better than most rookies.
He drew comparisons to Kevin Durant, which although excessive, speaks of his skill set in a 6’11” body. I’ve got Antetokounmpo inside the top 150 and with his ability to generate blocks, steals, threes and rebounds from the shooting guard position, he could easily be a top 70 player by season’s end.
Antetokounmpo is probably the number one player in this class from a dynasty perspective and you’d be wise to get him n those formats and he’ll be a name to watch in standard leagues as well.
16. Lucas Nogueira, C, Atlanta Hawks — 18 games, PER 23.9, 17 mpg (Spanish ACB)
6.2 ppg, 0.0 3pm, 4.1 rpg, 0.5 apg, 0.7 spg, 1.6 bpg, 70.3 FG%, 67.7 FT%, 0.7 tpg
Nogueira stayed in Spain for the 2013-14 season and put up some nice numbers in an injury interrupted campaign. He had problems with his knee, but appears fully fit now and has announced he is journeying over to the states for the 2014-15 season. I’ve got super high hopes for Nogueira, but I don’t expect those hopes to come to fruition next season. Could he replace Paul Millsap in the starting lineup a few yeas down the road, moving Al Horford to his natural power forward position? The Hawks would love a paint presence like Nogueira next to Horford.
If he’s around in your dynasty league, snap him up now, but for standard leagues, leave him to the wire unless something changes dramatically.
17. Dennis Schroder, PG, Atlanta Hawks — 49 games, PER 5.8, 13 mpg
3.7 ppg, 0.2 3pm, 1.2 rpg, 1.9 apg, 0.3 spg, 0.0 bpg, 38.3 FG%, 67.4 FT%, 1.2 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 429
Let’s get the bad out of the way. Schroder was another draftee hampered by injury in his rookie season and when he did play, he was not great at all. He couldn’t dislodge Shelvin Mack as the backup point guard in Atlanta and looked a little lost at times.
But, that’s to be expected for a young man coming from Germany and adapting to a new league and a new way of life. Atlanta likes Schroder a lot and seem unsold on Jeff Teague as the point guard of the future, so they’ll want Schroder to present a decent challenge.
In the D League, Schroder was very good though. He averaged 17.0 points and 6.7 assists on 47.9 percent shooting and if he could translate some of that confidence to the NBA, we may have a player on our hands. As it stands, Schroder won’t impact leagues next season, but we can expect a better performance than what we saw this year.
18. Shane Larkin, PG, Dallas Mavericks — 48 games, PER 8.3, 10 mpg
2.8 ppg, 0.3 3pm, 0.9 rpg, 1.5 apg, 0.5 spg, 0.0 bpg, 38.0 FG%, 64.0 FT%, 0.8 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 390
Yet another rookie who got hurt in the preseason, Larkin broke his ankle in Summer League and struggled to make impact when he returned. Known as a defensive threat, Larkin notched seven steals in his first three NBA games and had games of five and six steals throughout the season.
Larkin was great in his D League assignment, averaging 15.3 points, 8.3 assists and 2.0 steals in 36 minutes. With Devin Harris set to leave in free agency Larkin could easily jump one spot in the pecking order, but to think he may surpass Jose Calderon, Monta Ellis or Vince Carter is doubtful.
19. Sergey Karasev, SG, Cleveland Cavaliers — 22 games, PER 2.3, 7 mpg
1.7 ppg, 0.2 3pm, 0.7 rpg, 0.3 apg, 0.1 spg, 0.0 bpg, 34.3 FG%, 90.0 FT%, 0.5 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 434
If I was to give you one word to describe Sergey Karasev’s rookie year, it would be yuck. The Russian shooting guard, who has god size for an NBA two, couldn’t get settled and even struggled a bit in the D League.
The fact that he posted a pitiful PER of 2.3, three times worse than that of Anthony Bennett, outlines how badly he struggled to adjust to the NBA game. Karasev’s highest scoring output was eight points, back in November and if there was one player in this draft who I would be ready to discard already, it would be Karasev. If you get him for minimum salary in a dynasty, that’s acceptable, but anything else is pure folly.
20. Tony Snell, SG/SF, Chicago Bulls — 77 games, PER 8.0. 16 mpg
4.6 ppg, 0.8 3pm, 1.6 rpg, 0.9 apg, 0.4 spg, 0.2 bpg, 38.4 FG%, 75.6 FT%, 0.6 tpg
Fantasy Rank — 329
It’s not easy for a rookie to crack Tom Thibodeau’s rotation, but Snell was able to get himself more minutes than a lot of people were expecting. He was mainly used a three and D guy, which isn’t great for fantasy, but his role will expand, much like Jimmy Butler‘s did after a season of learning with the Bulls.
Snell didn’t look lost on the court and that’s a great sign, but for fantasy, his scope for big numbers isn’t quite there. He has no standard league relevance and maybe never will, but there is a little upside there.
Much like the first 10 picks, there were some good performances like MCW and Giannis and some injury issues like with Schroder and Larkin.