• One of my favorite things to do when the regular season wraps up is the postseason fantasy draft.

    Mostly, I just like drinking a bunch of beer and mindlessly drafting after an 82-game schedule of incessant analysis.

    This year I got to do two drafts.  One was with a few indie rockers that indie rock people would know — and most folks would never believe how obsessive the indie rockers get about fantasy hoops.  Maybe it’s all the time on the tour bus.

    The other draft was with the new crew here at Hoop Ball, which was as cutthroat and hilarious of a draft as I’ve been a part of in a while.

    Surprise, surprise — the second draft I did was much better than the first.  In most setups you’re trying to pick players from teams that you think will advance and that’s the fun element of these drafts.  Folks are underprepared, predisposed to overvalue big names, unclear on who they like to advance in the playoffs, and not really used to the valuations of players.  Scoring systems aren’t standardized.

    It’s total chaos … which is why it’s so fun and I embrace that with little to no studying on my part.  Now you might not be grinding through an 82-game season as a fantasy basketball writer or you might simply want to win. You might have money involved.  So let’s get to breaking down this draft.  The guys gave blurbs on why they picked who they picked and also who they thought had the best pick in the round.  They weren’t supposed to pick their own pick but it was a bit of a free for all.

    The scoring system is below.  We added a fun wrinkle that ejections, Flagrant Fouls, Game Winning Buzzer Beaters and technical fouls all are worth positive points.  Otherwise, the system more or less tries to emulate some semblance of a standard league without percentages.


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    ROUND 1

    Pos Pk Ov Team Player
    PG 1 1 Mike Yusko Curry, Stephen – GS
    PF 2 2 Aaron Bruski Green, Draymond – GS
    SF 3 3 Dan Besbris James, LeBron – CLE
    SF 4 4 Vince Miracle Durant, Kevin – OKC
    SG 5 5 Riaz Dhanani Thompson, Klay – GS
    PG 6 6 Giovanni Musa Westbrook, Russell – OKC
    SF 7 7 Ace Tran Leonard, Kawhi – SA
    PF 8 8 Dimitri Tzaneteas Millsap, Paul – ATL
    PG 9 9 Robert Munoz Lowry, Kyle – TOR
    PG 10 10 Zain Dhanani Irving, Kyrie – CLE
    PF 11 11 John Sill Love, Kevin – CLE


    MIKE YUSKO: Stephen Curry

    Tough choice…


    Best pick: Draymond Green by Bruski. I had him ranked #2 and thought he’d slide.


    DAN BESBRIS: LeBron James

    This was a pretty easy pick. The King will keep his teammates involved with assists and defensive stats in the early rounds against weaker competition, and as the playoffs wear on he’ll start to dominate the ball and rack up points and boards.
    Best Pick: Mike Yusko – Steph Curry – Most of the players drafted in the 1st round are going to put up stats. Getting first pick MIGHT just win this entire league this year.


    RIAZ DHANANI: Klay Thompson

    GSW is the favorite to win the title and he was the best available on their team.


    Best Pick: Kyrie Irving. If the Cavs get to the NBA Finals, which they are favorite to do, then they will likely end the playoffs with the most games played. Kyrie at 10th pick could be a steal.


    GIOVANNI MUSA: Russell Westbrook

    I like OKC to at least make the WCF, so getting the triple-double machine known as Russell Westbrook at 6th overall was a no brainer for me. He should slaughter whoever the Mavs – his first round opponent – throw at him along the way.


    Best Pick: Draymond Green. After Steph Curry there was no obvious pick. But Dray absolutely fills it up in the Warriors’ small ball lineup of death – a lineup you’re sure to see a whole lot more than you saw during the regular season.


    ACE TRAN: Kawhi Leonard

    The Spurs have a great chance to take it all this year if they can outlast the onslaught of the Warriors. Regardless, it definitely won’t be a sweep if the Spurs and Warriors face-off in the WCF. Clearly the best pick in this round was Stephen Curry and I don’t think I need to explain why!



    Huge Hawks fan and I am feeling a long playoff run. If that occurs then Milly is definitely deserving of a round one pick.

    Best Pick: Stephen Curry – Best player on the best team. This one is a no-brainer.


    ROBERTO MUNOZ: Kyle Lowry

    This is the year the Raptors take the next step and for them to do that they will need their best player to produce, and produce he will! Lowry has the potential for steals, technicals and 3pts…as well as game winning buzzer beaters.


    Best Pick: (Yusko) by default! How can you go against Curry?


    JOHN SILL: Kevin Love

    Seemed like the safest pick to stay alive near the end of the first round. Cavs have best Vegas odds to make finals and Love had his highest scoring average (24 ppg) against the Pistons (1st round matchup) this year.


    Best Play: LeBron James – he tends to step it up in the playoffs and has the best odds to make the finals

Fantasy News

  • Dwight Howard
    C, Memphis Grizzlies

    Dwight Howard has agreed with the Grizzlies on a buyout, and will sign a non-guaranteed contract with the Lakers.

    The Lakers are giving Howard an opportunity to be fantasy relevant. When given minutes, Dwight can produce double-doubles with the best of them, but he has been changing teams for years now. He will be worth a gamble at the end of your draft if camp with the Lakers goes well, but this is a non-guaranteed deal, and he only played nine games last season.

    Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

  • Marcus Derrickson
    PF, Atlanta Hawks

    The Hawks signed Marcus Derrickson to an Exhibit 10 contract on Friday.

    It looks like Derrickson will be a G-League option for the Hawks, so there's nothing to see here. At one point he was competing for the last roster spot on the team. We don't need to keep of track of every computer-generated player.

    Source: Chris Vivlamore on Twitter

  • Marreese Speights
    C, Free Agent

    Marreese Speights will work out for the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday according to Alex Kennedy of Hoopshype.

    Speights spent last year playing in China and will attempt his NBA comeback with the Lakers. who are in desperate need of an additional center. He is among three centers the Lakers are looking into, the others being Dwight Howard and Joakim Noah. Of those three, Speights unquestionably has the best floor spacing ability, which would be his strongest bet to eke out those other two for the job.

    Source: Alex Kennedy on Twitter

  • Trevor Booker
    PF, International

    Trevor Booker has worked out for the Nuggets and has workouts planned with the Bucks and Clippers, according to Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype.

    Booker was out of the NBA in 2018-19, spending the season in China after he didn't get any offers in free agency. He did return to the US to undergo a procedure on his foot but is apparently fully recovered. The last time we saw Booker he split 68 games between the Nets, Sixers and Pacers in 2017-18. If he does make a successful comeback he'll have no fantasy relevance.

    Source: Alex Kennedy on Twitter

  • John Henson
    PF, Cleveland Cavaliers

    In a recent Q & A on Cleveland.com, beat writer Chris Fedor said that the Cavs are "excited" to have a healthy John Henson.

    Henson underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament in his left wrist last November and missed the rest of the season. He was limited to 14 games with Milwaukee before getting traded to the Cavs, averaging 5.6 points, 5.1 rebounds and 0.8 blocks in 13.4 minutes per game. The Cavs do have a crowded rotation at center with Tristan Thompson, Kevin Love and Larry Nance Jr. all candidates to see minutes, but Henson gives them an element of rim protection and could factor in. He's a name to remember for deep-league owners hunting blocks.

    Source: Cleveland.com

  • Robert Covington
    SF, Minnesota Timberwolves

    Robert Covington (right knee bone bruise) will reportedly be "good to go" for the start of training camp in October.

    Well, this is good news that we didn't hope we would need. Covington played 35 games last year and couldn't get over the bone bruise injury that kept him out for a majority of the year. We expected him to be ready to go, and the fact that we're even discussing this is slightly less than ideal.

    Source: Dane Moore on Twitter

  • Kemba Walker
    PG, Boston Celtics

    Team USA has named Kemba Walker, Marcus Smart and Donovan Mitchell as captains for the FIBA World Cup.

    Congratulations to Mitchell, Walker and Smart on the tremendous honor of being named captains for the USA men's team. This won't have any impact on their upcoming fantasy seasons, but it is a major accomplishment nonetheless. Team USA has an exhibition rematch against Team Australia on Saturday.

    Source: Boston.com Celtics News on Twitter

  • Isaiah Canaan
    PG, International

    Isaiah Canaan has signed a contract with the Shangdong Heroes of the Chinese Basketball Association.

    The veteran journeyman played for the Suns, Wolves and Bucks last season, appearing in 30 games total. Canaan will be looking at a more prominent role and payday overseas as he attempts to build his value back up before trying to latch on to a team towards the end of the year. Canaan is off the fantasy radar.

    Source: Zhang Duo on Twitter

  • Patty Mills
    PG, San Antonio Spurs

    Patty Mills put up 19 points, three assists, two steals, a block and three 3-pointers in Thursday's international exhibition between Team Australia and Team USA.

    The Boomers figure to be one of the chief threats to the Americans in the World Cup and put forth a competitive effort in today's exhibition. Mills has typically been a steady, late-round fantasy option for deep-league play but that may change this season as the Spurs will need to mix in both Derrick White and Dejounte Murray in the backcourt. Chris Goulding tied for the team lead in points, also scoring 19 while hitting four 3-pointers in 22 minutes off the bench.

  • Myles Turner
    C, Indiana Pacers

    Myles Turner put up 15 points and 14 rebounds in Thursday's exhibition win over Team Australia, shooting 6-of-8 from the floor with a 3-pointer.

    Turner didn't get any blocks but we know that last year's league-leader can rack those up in a hurry, whether he's getting them in international competition or not. Look for another early-middle round season out of the talented big man. Kemba Walker led Team USA with 23 points in the 102-86 win.