Ryan Knaus

The Numbers Game

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Roto, Points & DFS Values

Wednesday, March 14, 2018


It's the final stretch of the NBA season, which means fantasy owners are either in the fantasy playoffs, fighting to make them, resigned to missing them, or maxing out games-played in roto leagues. It’s also one of the busiest times for waiver-wire action, when long-term considerations give way to immediate needs. This is the ‘what have you done for me lately’ stage of the season, where fantasy fortunes change with the winds.

 

Klay Thompson's fractured thumb will keep him out until at least March 22 –  if you're in the middle of a do-or-die playoff matchup, he's cut. Kawhi Leonard's return date was pushed back indefinitely – if you're not sure you can make the playoffs with his DNPs, he's cut. Meanwhile, opportunistic owners could be taking advantage of Corey Brewer's sneaky roto production, ringing whatever they can out of Marcus Morris, or gambling on guys like Mike Muscala and Garrett Temple.

 

Plenty hinges on your league format and scoring system, of course, so today's column will take a wide view with post-break rankings for both 8-cat leagues (representing roto) and the NBA's official points system (representing points leagues). The NBA's scoring system is identical to FanDuel and Draft.com, too, so DFS owners should take note. The difference in player ranks between formats is also calculated, with stark results – more on that below.

 

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The ranks below encompass Feb. 20 - Mar. 14, which is about 9-10 games for most players. As usual, I've ditched anyone averaging fewer than 15 minutes since the break. That got rid of many failed stashes (Willy Hernangomez), disappointing second acts (Jahlil Okafor), faded veterans (Derrick Rose), and players with dwindling roles (Maxi Kleber). We also bid farewell to Jordan Bell and Boban Marjanovic, with regret.

 

I set the cutoff for games-played at just two since the break. That allows Danilo Gallinari, Tyler Ulis, Ryan Anderson and others stick around (at least initially), but eliminates Jimmy Butler, Tyreke Evans and Brandon Jennings. I'm not buying Jennings' stock but he's certainly worth a shot if you're in a deep enough league to be toying with the likes of Tyler Dorsey and David Nwaba.

 

From there, I trimmed the list to the top-200 players in points leagues. Here are the results:

 

                  Name                      PTS-League Value PTS-League Rank 8-cat Rank Difference from PTS to 8-cat

 

Anthony Davis 68.49 1 1 0
LeBron James 57.9 2 3 1
James Harden 50.78 3 2 -1
Russell Westbrook 50.7 4 12 8
Kevin Durant 48.06 5 4 -1
Karl-Anthony Towns 47.82 7 6 -1
Giannis Antetokounmpo 47.82 6 8 2
Damian Lillard 45.56 8 7 -1
Joel Embiid 43.68 9 27 18
Jrue Holiday 43.54 10 15 5
Rudy Gobert 42.29 11 16 5
DeAndre Jordan 41.72 12 26 14
Andre Drummond 41.67 13 31 18
Brandon Ingram 41.61 14 10 -4
Brandon Jennings 41.6 15 9 -6
Devin Booker 41.48 16 20 4
Julius Randle 40.97 17 28 11
Nikola Jokic 40.9 18 14 -4
Victor Oladipo 40.67 19 19 0
Stephen Curry 39.92 20 5 -15
Tobias Harris 39.75 21 11 -10
Ben Simmons 39.45 22 35 13
Marc Gasol 38.87 23 24 1
Kyrie Irving 38.48 24 13 -11
Nicolas Batum 38.15 25 17 -8
Aaron Gordon 37.81 26 46 20
Chris Paul 37.02 27 21 -6
Dwight Howard 36.93 28 43 15
Draymond Green 36.66 29 22 -7
DeMar DeRozan 36.5 30 44 14
Jeff Teague 36.46 31 25 -6
Hassan Whiteside 36.27 32 52 20
Bradley Beal 36.02 33 34 1
Paul George 35.75 34 48 14
Lou Williams 35.44 35 59 24
Kyle Lowry 35.4 36 29 -7
Lonzo Ball 35.32 37 23 -14
T.J. Warren 35.27 38 60 22
Kemba Walker 34.91 39 32 -7
Nikola Vucevic 34.02 40 50 10
C.J. McCollum 34.02 41 63 22
Eric Bledsoe 33.71 42 36 -6
Taurean Prince 33.66 43 18 -25
LaMarcus Aldridge 33.52 44 110 66
Otto Porter 33.43 45 33 -12
Donovan Mitchell 33.2 46 41 -5
Khris Middleton 32.96 47 38 -9
Jusuf Nurkic 32.76 48 82 34
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 32.66 49 30 -19
Elfrid Payton 32.18 50 95 45
Willie Cauley-Stein 32.03 51 99 48
Blake Griffin 31.91 52 108 56
Rajon Rondo 31.87 53 65 12
Myles Turner 31.81 54 39 -15
Steven Adams 31.73 55 49 -6
Enes Kanter 31.63 56 64 8
Gary Harris 31.59 57 37 -20
Goran Dragic 31.43 58 67 9
Nemanja Bjelica 31.22 59 42 -17
Will Barton 31.12 60 51 -9
D'Angelo Russell 31.08 61 47 -14
Harrison Barnes 30.8 62 97 35
Kris Dunn 30.39 63 53 -10
Ricky Rubio 30.36 64 93 29
Andrew Wiggins 30.35 65 90 25
Larry Nance Jr. 29.99 66 56 -10
JaMychal Green 29.94 67 94 27
Bobby Portis 29.87 68 92 24
Jonas Valanciunas 29.52 69 72 3
Andrew Harrison 29.51 71 166 95
Kyle Kuzma 29.51 70 71 1
Joe Ingles 29.43 72 40 -32
Brook Lopez 29.09 73 55 -18
Dennis Schroder 29.07 74 88 14
Justise Winslow 28.97 75 85 10
Wilson Chandler 28.94 76 74 -2
Clint Capela 28.9 77 102 25
Tim Hardaway Jr. 28.83 78 73 -5
Klay Thompson 28.81 79 81 2
Dejounte Murray 28.57 80 83 3
Markieff Morris 28.55 81 61 -20
Dennis Smith Jr. 28.42 82 147 65
Dario Saric 28.41 83 70 -13
Isaiah Thomas 28.37 84 84 0
Jamal Murray 28.24 85 57 -28
Paul Millsap 28.23 86 62 -24
Spencer Dinwiddie 28.04 87 89 2
DeMarre Carroll 28.03 88 76 -12
Josh Richardson 28 89 45 -44
Pau Gasol 27.98 90 112 22
Robert Covington 27.94 91 54 -37
Nikola Mirotic 27.81 92 79 -13
Ty Wallace 27.76 93 120 27
Caris LeVert 27.38 94 77 -17
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson 27.33 95 103 8
Josh Jackson 27.32 96 149 53
Austin Rivers 26.68 97 115 18
Kyle O'Quinn 26.65 98 58 -40
Evan Fournier 26.55 99 104 5
Bojan Bogdanovic 26.42 100 66 -34
Zach LaVine 26.4 101 170 69
Kyle Anderson 26.3 102 98 -4
Tomas Satoransky 26.2 103 80 -23
Marcus Smart 26.02 104 96 -8
Dwight Powell 25.64 105 134 29
Dirk Nowitzki 25.34 106 78 -28
Andre Iguodala 25.15 107 69 -38
Cory Joseph 25.08 108 113 5
Thaddeus Young 25.07 109 100 -9
Lauri Markkanen 25.06 111 145 34
Trey Burke 25.06 110 154 44
J.J. Barea 25.04 112 107 -5
Kelly Olynyk 25.03 113 87 -26
Tyler Johnson 24.95 114 106 -8
Zach Randolph 24.94 115 193 78
De'Aaron Fox 24.92 116 131 15
Bogdan Bogdanovic 24.85 117 114 -3
John Collins 24.74 118 105 -13
Eric Gordon 24.67 119 68 -51
Carmelo Anthony 24.64 120 139 19
Montrezl Harrell 24.53 121 118 -3
Jarell Martin 24.47 122 141 19
Reggie Bullock 24.32 123 122 -1
Skal Labissiere 24.24 124 123 -1
Taj Gibson 24.23 125 155 30
Dwyane Wade 24.21 126 165 39
David Nwaba 24.14 127 109 -18
Dewayne Dedmon 23.91 128 75 -53
Marcus Morris 23.88 129 168 39
Buddy Hield 23.86 130 135 5
Terry Rozier 23.81 131 138 7
Al Horford 23.77 132 143 11
Josh Hart 23.75 133 169 36
Kelly Oubre Jr. 23.72 134 124 -10
Serge Ibaka 23.65 135 133 -2
Jaylen Brown 23.54 136 126 -10
Allen Crabbe 23.22 137 132 -5
Jonathon Simmons 23.05 138 160 22
Darren Collison 23.01 139 146 7
Trevor Ariza 22.96 140 101 -39
Denzel Valentine 22.93 141 156 15
D.J. Augustin 22.76 142 86 -56
Kosta Koufos 22.64 143 187 44
Jakob Poeltl 22.62 144 91 -53
Jayson Tatum 22.58 145 111 -34
Frank Kaminsky 22.56 146 119 -27
Jarrett Allen 22.55 147 125 -22
Derrick Favors 22.32 148 174 26
James Johnson 22.12 149 142 -7
Ed Davis 22.11 150 163 13
Fred VanVleet 21.88 151 127 -24
Mason Plumlee 21.84 152 157 5
John Henson 21.83 153 173 20
Emmanuel Mudiay 21.77 154 227 73
Kent Bazemore 21.63 155 121 -34
Mario Hezonja 21.59 156 140 -16
Tristan Thompson 21.59 157 230 73
Pascal Siakam 21.41 158 159 1
J.J. Redick 21.34 159 116 -43
George Hill 21.2 160 171 11
Dillon Brooks 21.19 161 186 25
Jabari Parker 21.11 162 175 13
Wesley Matthews 21.01 163 137 -26
Daniel Theis 20.86 164 130 -34
Ben McLemore 20.66 165 129 -36
Rudy Gay 20.57 166 190 24
Jeremy Lamb 20.49 167 150 -17
Ish Smith 20.43 168 219 51
Dante Cunningham 20.41 169 144 -25
Jae Crowder 20.39 170 200 30
Nerlens Noel 20.19 171 189 18
Michael Beasley 20.12 172 191 19
Mike Muscala 20.02 173 136 -37
Cameron Payne 19.7 174 158 -16
Greg Monroe 19.65 175 164 -11
Yogi Ferrell 19.59 176 152 -24
Jordan Clarkson 19.55 177 177 0
Milos Teodosic 19.35 178 148 -30
Jerami Grant 19.26 179 199 20
Domantas Sabonis 19.26 180 213 33
Dragan Bender 18.99 181 183 2
E'Twaun Moore 18.92 182 233 51
Tyler Ulis 18.9 183 207 24
Ersan Ilyasova 18.88 184 176 -8
Corey Brewer 18.76 185 128 -57
Emeka Okafor 18.64 186 161 -25
Michael Carter-Williams 18.57 187 194 7
Patty Mills 18.55 188 192 4
Garrett Temple 18.5 189 117 -72
JaVale McGee 18.41 190 153 -37
Mario Chalmers 18.24 191 172 -19
Al-Farouq Aminu 18.02 192 221 29
Frank Mason III 17.99 193 184 -9
P.J. Tucker 17.89 194 181 -13
Dorian Finney-Smith 17.7 195 214 19
Marcin Gortat 17.53 196 239 43
Tony Parker 17.45 197 209 12
Jamal Crawford 17.43 198 245 47
Shabazz Napier 17.32 199 196 -3
Rodney Hood 17.24 200 243 43

 

Exploring the Difference from PTS to 8-cat

 

Since this point-league system, like most, is focused entirely on counting stats, especially scoring, it's harder to find 'sneaky' values...and the concept of a specialist doesn't exist. Owners in points leagues will therefore have to act quickly with pickups for guys like Nemanja Bjelica, who has been top-60 with Jimmy Butler out of the picture. If you see Justise Winslow putting up 29.0 fantasy points per game lately, don't wait to see if it's sustainable -- grab him while we find out. Other players quietly getting it done with top-150 value in points leagues are Tyler Johnson, Cory Joseph, Kyle O'Quinn and Caris LeVert.

 

The biggest losers when shifting to an 8-cat perspective are 1) Guys with excellent percentages (FG% and/or FT%), since those aren't explicitly counted in this points system, 2) Players who rely on 3-pointers, since all scoring is treated equally, and 3) Players who rely on categories that aren't scoring -- raw points per game are king in most PTS leagues, and this one is no different.

 

As a result, the list of players who gain the most in 8-cat leagues is somewhat predictable: Garrett Temple (+72 spots in the rankings), Corey Brewer (57), D.J. Augustin (56), Dewayne Dedmon (53), Jakob Poeltl (53), Eric Gordon (51), Josh Richardson (44), J.J. Redick (43), Kyle O'Quinn (40)...and of course, Trevor Ariza (39).

 

There are also some guys not listed above because there were outside the top-200 for PTS scoring, but who have nevertheless been viable 8-cat options since the break. That group includes Kyle Korver, Jonathan Isaac, Wayne Ellington, C.J. Miles, Moe Harkless, Danny Green and Tony Snell. Dramatic shifts in value aren't limited to mid- and lower-tier players, of course. Joel Embiid falls from No. 9 to No. 27 overall in 8-cat since the break, and he'd dip even lower if turnovers were included. 

 

A few more tidbits...Brandon Ingram's strained groin came at an awful time for owners, as he was lighting it up as an early-round value in four games after the break. He's been ruled out for Wednesday but should be re-evaluated soon...Julius Randle has been no less impressive and will probably be gone by the 4th round in most leagues next year?...Nicolas Batum's late-season surge has been as impressive as it is unlikely, and owners can only hope the Hornets don't shut down veterans if/when they are eliminated from the playoff race...Tobias Harris is a rare player who seems to hit the ground running no matter where he's playing -- he's simply been elite over the past three weeks...Speaking of that trade, Blake Griffin is another guy who gains a lot of value in PTS leagues (No. 52) compared to roto (No. 108)...Andrew Harrison (wrist) was due back in "a week or two" as of Mar. 14, which means we could see him very soon. He was posting 29.5 fantasy points per game in four games after the break, putting him in the top-75, so keep a very close on him...I've been a proponent of Skal Labissiere, but if his hip injury costs him more games (currently questionable for Wednesday), I'm out. He was just outside the top-120 in his previous nine games and continues to get banged up, so the upside doesn't really justify the risk...that's all I have time for today, but let me know if you have any questions or insights via Twitter (@Knaus_RW)...good luck this week!



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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