April 11, 2018, 12:22 amNerlens NoelPF/C, Dallas Mavericks
Nerlens Noel served the final game of his 5-game suspension on Tuesday night.
Noel was popped for violating the league's drug policy, and now heads into a very interesting free agent saga. He accepted a qualifying offer and bet on himself rather than sign a longer-term deal below his perceived worth and it certainly looks like a mistake in retrospect. Noel did have a nice finish to the year, playing enough to finish as a top-190/165 player on a per-game basis. It's tough to take those numbers at face value as Noel began the year as a bit part before falling out of the rotation entirely. He later sustained a thumb injury that required surgery but was actually given minutes upon his return, flashing the defensive upside that made him a fantasy darling in the first place and returning middle-round value over the final two months of the year. Noel was a top-310/300 player overall thanks to just 29 games but averaged 1.1 steals and 0.8 blocks in only 16.3 minutes per game. We'll see where he lands.