Fantasy Review For 2017/18 Season:

On one side there were serious injuries to their 2 stars, especially Hayward was unlucky in this regard [he fractured tibia in left leg and dislocated left ankle during the opener], but on the other side with heavy-hitters sidelined youngsters had a chance to step up. Jayson Tatum and Terry Rozier took advantage of this opportunity and delivered their first good season in 9-cat Roto.

Changes in the offseason

Lost = Shane Larkin
Added = healthy Gordon Hayward, Robert Williams

Projected Depth Chart:

PG SG SF PF C
Kyrie Irving Jaylen Brown Gordon Hayward Jayson Tatum Al Horford
Terry Rozier Marcus Smart Marcus Morris Marcus Morris Aron Baynes
Marcus Smart Terry Rozier Semi Ojeleye Guerschon Yabusele Daniel Theis

Positional Battles: None

It’s possible Aron Baynes will start against bigger centers and I’m sure because of rest/injuries there will be some spot starts for Rozier or Smart or Marcus Morris along the way but with everybody healthy it’s a pretty locked starting lineup.

Fantasy Relevant in leagues with 12- to 15-teams:

Kyrie Irving

47,8 FG%, 89 FT%, 2,83 3PM, 23,18 PTS, 3,46 REB, 4,93 AST, 1,07 STL, 0,29 BL, 2,22 TO

At this point Kyrie clearly established what to expect from him on the court – elite offensive stats [including percentages] with mediocre defensive numbers. But the main story for his value is how often he actually is on the court. He played more than 73 games only once in his NBA career so that makes it 7 out 8 years [I’m including freshman year in NCAA] he missed a significant part of the season which are not great odds for him to stay healthy. In my opinion you have to assume he will miss 10+ games again so his 1-round worthy averages overstate his real fantasy value.

Gordon Hayward

45,8 FG%, 82,4 FT%, 2,05 3PM, 19,23 PTS, 5,29 REB, 3,36 AST, 1,08 STL, 0,36 BL, 2,24 TO

Paul George had a great season after he missed a year with similar injury so I assume it won’t have any negative effects on Hayward outside of occasional rest days [but keep in mind this could be an optimistic scenario!].

The most tricky part about projecting Hayward’s stats is… he played only 5 minutes in Celtics uniform. So we still don’t know what his role will be next to other stars and how their deep roster of wings will affect his numbers. It’s easy to assume career-year thanks to Stevens’ magic but you would have to ignore he had a spectacular and hard-to-top last season in Utah and he won’t have the same usage in Boston. Overall there are multiple reasons to be cautious here.

Al Horford

47,3 FG%, 78,6 FT%, 1,16 3PM, 11,21 PTS, 6,88 REB, 4,74 AST, 0,52 STL, 1,25 BL, 1,81 TO

At age 32 with additional ball-handler in the starting lineup the decline probably will accelerate but versatile statline from a position of center fits well into many strategies so he should be able to be a good second or third big in fantasy. Just remember to focus on rebounds from other positions because Horford rebounds like a solid small forward and this trend could get worse with his successful move behind the three-point line.

Jayson Tatum

46,2 FG%, 83,8 FT%, 1,37 3PM, 14,36 PTS, 5,4 REB, 1,52 AST, 0,98 STL, 0,78 BL, 1,39 TO

After spectacular rookie season many expect him to blossom into fantasy star but in my opinion there are two obstacles that should slow this hype train down – lower usage and regression in 3P%.
A typical 3rd pick in the draft would easily take on more responsibility and minutes in his second year but Tatum’s situation is far from typical. Not only he plays next to 3 other stars already but also for a coach who prefers low minutes for his top players and both of those factors will limit his upside this year.
What’s more, it’s surprising how few people noticed this list from basketball-reference.com.
Is Tatum one of the greatest three-point shooters of all time? I don’t think so… he will probably follow the path of non-Curry players from that list so I assume worse performance after rookie season in this category.

Could be useful with trades/injuries [or in deeper leagues than 15 teams]:
Jaylen Brown, Terry Rozier, Marcus Smart, Marcus Morris

Just don’t bother with:
Backup centers.

Don’t forget to check the rest of the Boston Celtics fantasy basketball projections..

Posted in Teams preview