Ryan Knaus

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Top-200 Draft Overview

Thursday, October 5, 2017


The NBA preseason is in full swing, which means the annual 30-team fantasy basketball extravaganza known as 30-Deep is also underway. Wrangling together dozens of owners for a multi-day draft is no small feat – even with a 25-minute clock that runs from 10am-midnight, this draft typically lasts 4-5 days. Everyone involved is an experienced, hardcore fantasy hoops owner, of course, which is a prerequisite in a league that requires 360 players to be drafted.

 

Before examining the results, it’s critical to understand the rules and settings that determine lineups.

 

Style: H2H

Scoring: 9-cat (Pts, 3pt, Reb, Ast, Stl, Blk, FG%, FT%, TOs)

Lineups: Weekly

IR: Two IR spots

Transactions: Unlimited; first-come, first-serve

Positions: PG, SG, G, SF, PF, F, C, UTIL, Bench (x4)

Draft: Snake

 

The league is hosted by CBS, which is very stingy with position designations. As the draft progresses, therefore, owners must give increasing weight to finding the best values at a given position, rather than simply the best overall value. Steve Alexander landed first pick this year, for instance, and used the honor to select Karl-Anthony Towns. He then had to wait 59 picks to make his second and third selections, at which point the elite PGs and swingmen were gone – knowing it’d be another 59 picks before he’d pick again, Doc took the opportunity to add D’Angelo Russell (PG) and Brandon Ingram (SF).

 

The rigid positions also give extra incentive to target guys with multiple-position eligibility. Giannis Antetokounmpo is the modern prototype of versatility, but even he is limited to SF and PF. Aaron Gordon has the good fortune of also being a SF/PF, Wesley Matthews gets SG/SF, and James Harden is one of the few players to qualify as PG/SG.

 

One final thought before looking at the picks: in terms of primary positions, CBS eligibility looks well-balanced, but this is largely due to the nature of our draft, where owners intentionally seek out PGs and Cs before they become scarce. Here’s the breakdown of primary positions (as assigned by CBS) so far, through 200 picks:

 

PG – 40

SG – 43

SF – 41

PF – 38

C – 38   

 

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Below are the top-200 picks, with 160 yet to go. They are up-to-date (the draft is still underway) and owners have yet to fill out their active lineups, never mind their benches. 

 

Round 1

 

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

1

Karl-Anthony Towns 

 C

Steve Alexander

2

Giannis Antetokounmpo 

 PF

Frankie Lloyd

3

Stephen Curry 

 PG

Aaron Bruski

4

Kevin Durant 

 SF

Matt Stroup

5

James Harden 

 SG

David Klyce

6

Russell Westbrook 

 PG

Mike Gallagher

7

Anthony Davis 

 PF

Scott White

8

Nikola Jokic 

 C

Mike Passador

9

John Wall 

 PG

Ryan Knaus

10

LeBron James 

 SF

Daniel E. Dobish

11

DeMarcus Cousins 

 PF

Tom Lorenzo

12

Damian Lillard 

 PG

Brian Flood

13

Chris Paul 

 PG

Nick Raducanu

14

Kawhi Leonard 

 SF

Joe Polito

15

Rudy Gobert 

 C

Tommy Beer

16

Kyrie Irving 

 PG

Randall Dean

17

Myles Turner 

 C

Hector Castro

18

Kyle Lowry 

 PG

Dan Besbris

19

Draymond Green 

 PF

Tracy Fay

20

Kristaps Porzingis 

 PF

Matt Satten

21

Kemba Walker 

 PG

Rick Kamla

22

Jimmy Butler 

 SF

Josh Lloyd

23

Hassan Whiteside 

 C

Ethan Norof

24

Paul George 

 SF

Erik Ong

25

Blake Griffin 

 PF

Chris Towers

26

Gordon Hayward 

 SF

Dennis Velasco

27

Joel Embiid 

 C

Tom Carpenter

28

CJ McCollum 

 SG

Jamey Eisenberg

29

Mike Conley 

 PG

Brandon Klyce

30

Marc Gasol 

 C

Benny Aziz

 

KAT went to Doctor A at No. 1 which isn’t a surprise. Durability is a huge factor here, since 30-deep lineups are unforgiving – if your starting center goes down for an extended period, you could find yourself relying on someone like Jakob Poeltl overnight. The same logic holds for Steph Curry over Durant at No. 3. This isn’t something you’ll see in many standard drafts, but Steph has quietly been an iron-man ever since 2011-12 – in the past five seasons he’s missed a total of 16 games. Concerns about rest the past few years have also proven to be overblown, and the new rules discouraging DNP-Rest days should only help matters.

 

James Harden and Russell Westbrook go back-to-back at Nos. 5 and 6, which is tied specifically to the 9-cat format (and for Westbrook, perhaps background concerns about the PRP injection in his left knee). They one-upped each other for the NBA’s all-time turnover record last year, so this is basically a punt-turnover philosophy out of the gates. Nothing wrong with that. As you can see, Kawhi Leonard’s lingering right quad injury has taken a major toll on his value.

 

 Tellingly, among the first 18 picks in this draft, all but four qualify at PG or C. The exceptions are Durant, Giannis, LeBron and Kawhi. Joel Embiid went at No. 27, ahead of fellow centers Marc Gasol, Al Horford and Andre Drummond. In a league like this, that’s the definition of a boom-or-bust selection.

 

ROUND 2

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

31

Bradley Beal 

 SG

Benny Aziz

32

Klay Thompson 

 SG

Brandon Klyce

33

Paul Millsap 

 PF

Jamey Eisenberg

34

Devin Booker 

 SG

Tom Carpenter

35

DeMar DeRozan 

 SG

Dennis Velasco

36

Al Horford 

 C

Chris Towers

37

Kevin Love 

 PF

Erik Ong

38

Khris Middleton 

 SF

Ethan Norof

39

Nikola Vucevic 

 C

Josh Lloyd,

40

Andre Drummond 

 C

Rick Kamla

41

Eric Bledsoe 

 PG

Matt Satten

42

Ben Simmons 

 SF

Tracy Fay

43

Otto Porter 

 SF

Dan Besbris

44

Dennis 

 PG

Hector Castro

45

Dennis Schroder 

 PG

Randall Dean

46

Victor Oladipo 

 SG

Tommy Beer

47

Brook Lopez 

 C

Joe Polito

48

Lonzo Ball 

 PG

Nick Raducanu

49

DeAndre Jordan 

 C

Brian Flood

50

Andrew Wiggins 

 SF

Tom Lorenzo

51

Nicolas Batum 

 SG

Daniel E. Dobish

52

Jusuf Nurkic 

 C

Ryan Knaus

53

Gary Harris 

 SG

Mike Passador

54

Jeff Teague 

 PG

Scott White

55

Aaron Gordon 

 SF

Mike Gallagher

56

Goran Dragic 

 PG

David Klyce

57

Jrue Holiday 

 PG

Matt Stroup

58

Clint Capela 

 C

Aaron Bruski

59

Ricky Rubio 

 PG

Frankie Lloyd

60

D'Angelo Russell 

 PG

Steve Alexander

 

Kevin Love’s ADP has been climbing this preseason, and with good reason – he’ll be starting at center and coach Ty Lue has vowed to play through him more than the Cavs have in previous years. He went at No. 37 here and that looks like a serious value. Andre Drummond was the first true ‘punt’ player to come off the board – keep an eye on how Rick Kamla (who drafted Kemba Walker in Rnd. 1) builds around Drummond going forward.

 

In a bit of a twist, Ben Simmons was the first ‘rookie’ off the board at No. 42, followed soon by Dennis Smith Jr. (44) and Lonzo Ball (48). Here is the full list of rookies taken through 200 picks:

 

*Ben Simmons – 42

Dennis Smith Jr. – 44

Lonzo Ball – 48

Markelle Fultz – 72

Josh Jackson – 100

De’Aaron Fox – 102

John Collins – 109

Jayson Tatum – 119

Jonathan Isaac – 151

Caleb Swanigan – 154

Kyle Kuzma – 162

Frank Ntilikina – 166

Malik Monk – 169

Jarrett Allen – 186

Lauri Markkanen – 194

(It’s worth mentioning that Donovan Mitchell went at No. 203

 

 

ROUND 3

 

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

61

Brandon Ingram 

 SF

Steve Alexander

62

Marcin Gortat 

 C

Frankie Lloyd

63

Taurean Waller-Prince 

 SF

Aaron Bruski

64

Serge Ibaka 

 PF

Matt Stroup

65

Nerlens Noel 

 C

David Klyce

66

Marquese Chriss 

 PF

Mike Gallagher

67

Carmelo Anthony 

 SF

Scott White

68

Tobias Harris 

 SF

Mike Passador

69

Harrison Barnes 

 PF

Ryan Knaus

70

Julius Randle 

 PF

Daniel E. Dobish

71

Elfrid Payton 

 PG

Tom Lorenzo

72

Markelle Fultz 

 PG

Brian Flood

73

Reggie Jackson 

 PG

Nick Raducanu

74

George Hill 

 PG

Joe Polito

75

Avery Bradley 

 SG

Tommy Beer

76

LaMarcus Aldridge 

 PF

Randall Dean

77

Derrick Favors 

 PF

Hector Castro

78

Thaddeus Young 

 PF

Dan Besbris

79

Tim Hardaway Jr. 

 SG

Tracy Fay

80

Danilo Gallinari 

 SF

Matt Satten

81

Rajon Rondo 

 PG

Rick Kamla

82

Jeremy Lin 

 PG

Josh Lloyd,

83

Trevor Ariza 

 SF

Ethan Norof

84

Patrick Beverley 

 PG

Erik Ong

85

Evan Fournier 

 SG

Chris Towers

86

Darren Collison 

 PG

Dennis Velasco

87

Robert Covington 

 SF

Tom Carpenter

88

Malcolm Brogdon 

 PG

Jamey Eisenberg

89

Rondae Hollis-Jefferson 

 PF

Brandon Klyce

90

Isaiah Thomas 

 PG

Benny Aziz

 

Marcin Gortat was a stunner at the top of Round 3, but this highlights the overwhelming importance of filling positions – Frankie came into the pick with Giannis Antetokounmpo and Ricky Rubio, and he wouldn’t be up again for 57 more picks. Nerlens Noel went three picks later and I’d take him 100% of the time over Gortat, who was dismal to finish the 2016-17 season. In the final two months, he averaged 8.6 points (54.4% FGs, 57.1% FTs), 8.0 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 0.4 blocks and 0.2 steals in 24.7 minutes.

 

Taurean Prince is a popular breakout candidate for a reason, and Aaron Bruski knew he needed to burn what would typically be a mid-round pick to get him. This round also featured a run on PFs, as the quality rapidly declines – Serge Ibaka kicked things off, followed by Marquese Chriss, Harrison Barnes, Julius Randle, LaMarcus Aldridge, Derrick Favors and Thaddeus Young, plus a few more with dual-eligibility (including Rondae Hollis-Jefferson).

 

This is also where the IR spot starts to come into play – Benny Aziz fearlessly grabbed Isaiah Thomas at No. 90, trusting that his squad could stay afloat long enough to be in the mix when IT returns around January. The IR spot is a critical weapon in 30-Deep, because as soon as the draft concludes you can shift injured players to the IR and immediately grab a few (extremely) deep sleepers. It’s like getting a free pick or two at the very end of the draft.

 

From this point on, I’ll just let the picks speak for themselves. If you find yourself in disbelief about a certain player going too high (or, less frequently, too low), try searching (CTRL+F) for the team owner’s name and you’ll probably see the reasoning – they needed a backup PG, they wanted to handcuff the backup for their star big man, etc.

 

ROUND 4

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

91

T.J. Warren 

 SF

Benny Aziz

92

James Johnson 

 PF

Brandon Klyce

93

Jamal Murray 

 SG

Jamey Eisenberg

94

Marcus Smart 

 SG

Tom Carpenter

95

Robin Lopez 

 C

Dennis Velasco

96

Zach Randolph 

 PF

Chris Towers

97

Jae Crowder 

 SF

Erik Ong

98

Rodney Hood 

 SG

Ethan Norof

99

Willie Cauley-Stein 

 C

Josh Lloyd,

100

Josh Jackson 

 SF

Rick Kamla

101

Kris Dunn 

 PG

Matt Satten

102

De'Aaron Fox 

 PG

Tracy Fay

103

Jonas Valanciunas 

 C

Dan Besbris

104

Nikola Mirotic 

 PF

Hector Castro

105

Pau Gasol 

 C

Randall Dean

106

Marvin Williams 

 PF

Tommy Beer

107

Eric Gordon 

 SG

Joe Polito

108

Markieff Morris 

 PF

Nick Raducanu

109

John Collins 

 PF

Brian Flood

110

Dwight Howard 

 C

Tom Lorenzo

111

Kent Bazemore 

 SG

Daniel E. Dobish

112

Buddy Hield 

 SG

Ryan Knaus

113

Zach LaVine 

 SG

Mike Passador

114

Dwyane Wade 

 SG

Scott White

115

Josh Richardson 

 SG

Mike Gallagher

116

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist 

 SF

David Klyce

117

Steven Adams 

 C

Matt Stroup

118

Gorgui Dieng 

 PF

Aaron Bruski

119

Jayson Tatum 

 SF

Frankie Lloyd

120

Seth Curry 

 SG

Steve Alexander

 

 

ROUND 5

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

121

JaMychal Green 

 PF

Steve Alexander

122

Austin Rivers 

 SF

Frankie Lloyd

123

Richaun Holmes 

 C

Aaron Bruski

124

Lou Williams 

 SG

Matt Stroup

125

Enes Kanter 

 C

David Klyce

126

Boban Marjanovic 

 C

Mike Gallagher

127

Milos Teodosic 

 PG

Scott White

128

Jordan Clarkson 

 SG

Mike Passador

129

Dirk Nowitzki 

 C

Ryan Knaus

130

Ersan Ilyasova 

 PF

Daniel E. Dobish

131

Jabari Parker 

 SF

Tom Lorenzo

132

Dario Saric 

 PF

Brian Flood

133

Will Barton 

 SG

Nick Raducanu

134

Ryan Anderson 

 PF

Joe Polito

135

Wilson Chandler 

 SF

Tommy Beer

136

Dion Waiters 

 SG

Randall Dean

137

Rudy Gay 

 SF

Hector Castro

138

Joe Ingles 

 SG

Dan Besbris

139

Skal Labissiere 

 PF

Tracy Fay

140

JJ Redick 

 SG

Matt Satten

141

Chandler Parsons 

 SF

Rick Kamla

142

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 

 SG

Josh Lloyd,

143

Willy Hernangomez 

 C

Ethan Norof

144

Tyler Johnson 

 SG

Erik Ong

145

Wesley Matthews 

 SG

Chris Towers

146

Taj Gibson 

 PF

Dennis Velasco

147

Tyler Ulis 

 PG

Tom Carpenter

148

Greg Monroe 

 C

Jamey Eisenberg

149

Alex Len 

 C

Brandon Klyce

150

Patty Mills 

 PG

Benny Aziz

 

 

ROUND 6

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

151

Jonathan Isaac 

 SF

Benny Aziz

152

Terrence Ross 

 SF

Brandon Klyce

153

Justise Winslow 

 SF

Jamey Eisenberg

154

Caleb Swanigan 

 PF

Tom Carpenter

155

Allen Crabbe 

 SG

Dennis Velasco

156

Mason Plumlee 

 C

Chris Towers

157

DeWayne Dedmon 

 C

Erik Ong

158

Jaylen Brown 

 SG

Ethan Norof

159

Tyreke Evans 

 SF

Josh Lloyd,

160

Marcus Morris 

 PF

Rick Kamla

161

Thon Maker 

 C

Matt Satten

162

Kyle Kuzma 

 PF

Tracy Fay

163

Andre Iguodala 

 SF

Dan Besbris

164

Tristan Thompson 

 C

Hector Castro

165

Ish Smith 

 PG

Randall Dean

166

Frank Ntilikina 

 PG

Tommy Beer

167

Cody Zeller 

 C

Joe Polito

168

Kenneth Faried 

 PF

Nick Raducanu

169

Malik Monk 

 SG

Brian Flood

170

Bojan Bogdanovic 

 SF

Tom Lorenzo

171

Dejounte Murray 

 PG

Daniel E. Dobish

172

Maurice Harkless 

 SF

Ryan Knaus

173

Kelly Olynyk 

 C

Mike Passador

174

Al-Farouq Aminu 

 PF

Scott White

175

Norman Powell 

 SF

Mike Gallagher

176

Jeremy Lamb 

 SG

David Klyce

177

Denzel Valentine 

 SG

Matt Stroup

178

Bogdan Bogdanovic 

 SG

Aaron Bruski

179

Derrick Rose 

 PG

Frankie Lloyd

180

Tony Snell 

 SG

Steve Alexander

 

 

ROUND 7 (Most of it, anyway…up until pick 200)

Pick

Player

Main Position (CBS)

Owner

181

DeMarre Carroll 

 SF

Steve Alexander

182

Frank Kaminsky 

 C

Frankie Lloyd

183

Justin Holiday 

 SG

Aaron Bruski

184

Danny Green 

 SG

Matt Stroup

185

Trevor Booker 

 PF

David Klyce

186

Jarrett Allen 

 C

Mike Gallagher

187

Jerian Grant 

 PG

Scott White

188

C.J. Miles 

 SG

Mike Passador

189

Courtney Lee 

 SG

Ryan Knaus

190

Evan Turner 

 SF

Daniel E. Dobish

191

Bobby Portis 

 PF

Tom Lorenzo

192

Doug McDermott 

 SF

Brian Flood

193

Kyle O'Quinn 

 PF

Nick Raducanu

194

Lauri Markkanen 

 PF

Joe Polito

195

Lance Stephenson 

 SF

Tommy Beer

196

Stanley Johnson 

 SF

Randall Dean

197

Ramon Sessions 

 PG

Hector Castro

198

Jonathon Simmons 

 SG

Dan Besbris

199

Jahlil Okafor 

 C

Tracy Fay

200

Emmanuel Mudiay 

 PG

Matt Satten

 

Hopefully seeing how these 30 owners navigated a tricky draft will help you build your own squads this season. If you want even greater depth, check back in a few days for more 30-Deep related content – Mike Gallagher (the reigning back-to-back champ!) is planning a post mortem podcast, and Matt Stroup provides an in-depth look at the top-100 picks. And of course, Rotoworld’s ultimate guide to crushing your draft is just a click away, complete with two sets of stat projections, rankings for multiple formats, schedule grid/breakdown, and dozens of exclusive columns on sleepers, strategies, and so much more. Good luck!



Despite residing in Portland, Maine, Ryan Knaus remains a heartbroken Sonics fan who longs for the days of Shawn Kemp and Xavier McDaniel. He has written for Rotoworld.com since 2007. You can follow him on Twitter.
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