Welcome back. I had to step away from the writing game due to a lack of time a couple years ago. I was asked to post some stuff last year about a week before the season started, and despite not being prepared, I said yes, but I should have passed. Instead I rushed out rankings without doing even close to my normal homework prior. If you know me from my prime writing days, you know half-assing isn’t my thing. I would say I was going to cut back on my word counts a bit and still type up 2000+ words on a damn weekly waiver wire column… So, I admit I was a bit embarrassed by what I put out there a year ago.
So, why now? For one, I have more free time now. I’m back over-analyzing my few fantasy hoops squads, spending time daily in continuous trade negotiations, crunching numbers for no real reason on BasketballMonster and Basketball-Reference, and most of all, I’m just in a good spot mentally for it. What sparked things up in January? I’ve been keeping my own rankings all season long, and I got curious the other day as to where other analysts ranked certain players in their dynasty rankings. Upon searching I found that there were hardly any options at all. HashtagBasketball has some ranks out there that they update monthly, but that’s it really. If you’re like me, you like to over-think the ish out of things and want more than one opinion if you’re seeking one.
I was disturbed. Dynasty is my baby, I actually only have three fantasy basketball teams this year, and they’re all dynasty leagues — a 16-team, a 20-team and a 30-team. So, when I look around and see basically no dynasty coverage, I felt the itch come back immediately. I frequently get asked if I still do ranks and such, and it’s apparent that the dynasty hoops diehards need more love. Well, I’m back, and I’m here to share the love via dynasty rankings and content.
Now, let’s talk about dynasty rankings. You ever made your own dynasty rankings? It’s a son of a bish to say the least, because there’s so many things to factor in. You’ve got the super young guns, the latter part of their prime studs, the could soon be greats and the still delivering via their rocking chair gang. Now, each of those has value in dynasty in different ways. The young studs like Giannis are your alphas, but just because Harden is 29 doesn’t make him chopped liver. Potential future ballers like Mo Bamba aren’t in position for success yet, but to rebuilding teams, he’s super valuable on upside alone. LaMarcus Aldridge is 34-years-old, but he’s delivering top-35 stats this season, so to a contender, he’s got definite value. Meanwhile, rebuilders wouldn’t touch LMA with a 75-foot pole. It’s all relative to where your team stands, and that makes ranking these players incredibly difficult.
I like what hashtagbasketball does with the separate rankings, one for contenders and the other for rebuilders, but while I do have time to write now, I don’t want to wear myself thin doing multiple sets of rankings out of the gate. Not to mention, a lot of you, and myself, prefer general rankings where it’s all combined. We can decipher which players have more or less value to us based on our team makeup. If you’re battling for a championship, those opportunities don’t come that often (unless you’ve built an absolute dynasty juggernaut, in which case you’ll probably have to redraft in a year or two to get people interested in being in your league again, ha), so you’ve got to seize that moment and go all-in for it. Trading a future piece like Dejounte Murray or Michael Porter Jr. for someone like Mike Conley, who is aging, but can still help you become a champion right now.
So, I took my time this go around and tried to balance everything as well as I could between the studs, future gems, boom/busts and elders, but I need you to use common sense, too. Don’t come at me for having Marc Gasol ranked ahead of Bam Adebayo because Bam is 12 years younger and the MUCH BETTER dynasty upside. I’m not a fool, I get that. It’s just that Gasol has value in his own right, just not in the eyes of half your league. In my post-ranks content, I plan to breakdown some of the players from my rankings that I see as win-now targets in trades. I’ll also have additional content for rebuilding teams, discussing what kind of deals they should be hunting for. You’ve gotta use your leverage no matter which of those scenarios is your own. Don’t sweat it, I got you.
You see, I’m over 750 words for an intro to some damn dynasty rankings. WTF, Zack?! If you’re new here, this is how it goes. I don’t just write info, I type my content as if I’m standing in front of a chalkboard talking directly to you… the people.
Now, since I’ve covered my tracks above on how to look at these general dynasty ranks from your own POV, I can deliver them. These are more of H2H rankings, as my roto ranks would be very similar, but you know I don’t personally even consider drafting % killers in roto.
I posted their ages as what they’ll be at the start of the 2019-20 season. So, yes, I know most are listed as a year older than they currently are.
p=points r=rebounds a=assists s=steals b=blocks t=treys/3s
Well, what do you think? Comment your thoughts if you have any. Didn’t see me mention a player that you like the upside of and curious why they didn’t crack the top-150? It’s tough leaving some names out, odds are they narrowly missed, but if you want my take on the player, just ask. Other questions? Hit me up in the Twitter-verse @BigZack44
My next rankings update will likely be around the All-Star break, shortly after the trade deadline. Speaking of, I’ll be keeping up a live article trade deadline day, updating you on how each trade shakes up the fantasy outlook for both this year and dynasty.