It's the first day of school. The impressions you make on your new classmates today could last for the rest of your life.
So don't do anything stupid.
Don't make any rash decisions.
Don't drop your 1st round pick cuz he went 1/8 from the field.
It's a long season, so you gotta pace yourself. But you also gotta be open to possibility...
After 2 days in the NBA, there has surprisingly been lots to write about already.
First of all, that Spurs-Mavs game was a beauty. Popovich is a genius, but the Mavs are going to make some noise this year. Dallas has made some great offseason acquisitions, and will challenge for their division. (With that said, Chandler Parsons looked completely lost in that offense. It's only 1 game, but he made a poor first impression on me in his new digs...)
It was a pretty awesome start to an NBA season though - that has already had its share of drama...
Julius Randle, LAL, PF
Taken 7th overall in the 2014 NBA draft (and widely considered a ROY contender), Julius suffered a freak injury, and is now out for the season. Ed Davis immediately becomes Fantasy relevant, and the Lakers continue their downward spiral into mediocrity... Is it possible this is a bottom-5 NBA team by the end of the season? It's starting to look that way. Against the Rockets on opening night, they weren't even close...
Jimmy Butler, CHI, SG/SF
His "day-to-day" just turned into 2-to-4 weeks. After a monster preseason that I wrote about here, I snatched up Jimmy in the Yahoo Friends & Family league. Luckily, it's a weekly league - so we have 3 roster spots that essentially operate as IR slots - but as my 6th round pick, this does not make me happy. Butler hit at a beastly 68% from the field during the preseason, and was one of the hottest players in the NBA. He's obviously a hold in all leagues, but it's a horrible way to start the year (in a thin SF position)...
Anthony Davis, NO, PF/C
As one of the highest-ranked Fantasy players in the NBA, I don't need to write much about him. But did you see those opening night stats? 26 points, 17 boards, 9 blocks, 2 assists, 3 steals. With KD missing the first 2 months of the season, it's a 2-way race between AD and The King. With the usage dilemma in New Cleveland, I've got my money on Anthony Davis as being the best Fantasy Basketball player in the game by the end of the year. And I even tweeted that out, so you know it's legit.
Nikola Vucevic, ORL, PF/C
15 points, 23 rebounds, 4 blocks. Even in the midst of a perpetual rebuild, Vucevic is clearly becoming a cornerstone. I'm curious to see how Aaron Gordon's development will affect Vucevic's counting stats as the season progresses, but I expect consistent production from NV all year...
Tony Wroten, PHI, PG
He's streaky, but with Michael Carter-Williams injured for awhile, there is usage available in the PG slot. Wroten went off in game #1: 22 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, 3 steals. He's got a track record too, so I expect this to continue until MCW returns...
Chris Bosh, MIA, PF/C
26 points, 3 3PM, 15 rebounds, 5/5 FT, 4 assists, 1 steal, 1 block in his first game of the season. I told you so.
Russell Westbrook, OKC, PG
38 points, 15/16 FT, 3 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals. Westbrook will likely be the best player in Fantasy Basketball until KD comes back in 2 months. If you were lucky enough to snag him, enjoy. (Anthony Davis will be the best Fantasy Basketball player by the end of the year though.)
Ed Davis, LAL, PF/C (17% owned in Yahoo leagues)
Only worth adding in deep leagues, Ed is the seasoned veteran of the Lakers' preschool 2nd unit. At 25, he looks like Grandpa compared to some of the kids on LAL's bench. He'll help in H2H leagues of 14 or more, but don't expect any miracles. Judging by the Lakers' embarrassing performance opening night, they're going to get blown out a LOT. So Davis will put up some decent counting stats as the alpha male of this horrible infantry unit (pardon the pun)...
Alexey Shved, PHI, PG/SG (1% owned in Yahoo leagues)
Might have been an anomaly, but in a fluid Sixers roster, anything is in play. Worth a flier if you've got a guy you want to bounce already... While Shved didn't do much last year, he had a nice rookie year with the T-Wolves. In 24 minutes/game, he averaged 8.6 PPG, 1.1 3PM, 2.3 RPG, 3.7 APG, 0.7 SPG. The Sixers are completely random, so he might get a chance to get some run. For his first game of the season, Shved went off for 18 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists, 0 TOs and 3 3PM in 24 MPG. He could disappear at any moment, but if you're looking for upside, here it is.
Kendall Marshall, MIL, PG
I'm not afraid to say when I'm wrong, and I was wrong. He didn't even play. And he was healthy. Cut him loose.
Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker combined for 14 points in their respective NBA debuts. Those beastly numbers might take awhile...
It's only the beginning of the season, all. So don't freak out after a game or 2. But don't take your sweet time either. Now is the time in the season where rotations become clear, and breakout stars emerge. Don't cut a proven veteran too quickly, but if you have players you're on the fence about, now's the time to grab a guy getting numbers for a guy who's done nothing...
It's only the first day of school, but you still gotta do your homework. You never know when the pop quiz is coming...
I mean, that's why they call it a pop quiz.