Fantasy Review For 2017/18 Season:

They didn’t make playoffs in the NBA but in fantasy it was mostly a positive year. Jokic played like a superstar, Gary Harris and Jamal Murray made big steps forward and Will Barton was among the biggest surprises in the league. On the other hand Paul Millsap and Wilson Chandler did disappoint with injuries and worse than expected stats but both were stop-gaps anyway so young and thriving core is way more important information for the future including upcoming season…

Changes in the offseason

Lost = Wilson Chandler, Kenneth Faried
Added = Isaiah Thomas, Michael Porter Jr.

Projected Depth Chart:

Jamal Murray Gary Harris Will Barton Paul Millsap Nikola Jokic
Isaiah Thomas Torrey Craig Torrey Craig Trey Lyles Mason Plumlee
Monte Morris Jamal Murray Juancho Hernangomez Tyler Lydon Paul Millsap

Positional Battles: None

There’s a remote possibility Millsap will lose starting job to Lyles but I think it’s a worst-case scenario so in my opinion starting five is set in stone. The next big question is: who will play the 6th most minutes per game on this team? Isaiah Thomas? Trey Lyles? Torrey Craig? IT2 is probably the favorite because of his track record but I think Torrey Craig is a dark horse in that race because of his defense and ability to fill multiple positions. We’ll see but either way both shouldn’t crack the Top150 in 9-cat.

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

Nikola Jokic

49,4 FG%, 83,9 FT%, 1,42 3PM, 18,16 PTS, 10,68 REB, 5,96 AST, 1,18 STL, 0,82 BL, 2,77 TO

A new superstar on the fantasy scene made a nice progress in his third year but now the question is does he have another mini-leap in him or is he close to his peak value? I think it could happen if he becomes more of a scorer because with his efficiency he clearly could handle more shots but it probably won’t happen this year as Nuggets have simply too many weapons on offense. Also I’m not sure I buy him as 40% three-point shooter because teams will start to guard him more behind the line so I assume some regression there. But don’t let him slip outside of the Top10 in any of your drafts.

Gary Harris

47 FG%, 81,4 FT%, 2,32 3PM, 16,44 PTS, 2,73 REB, 2,83 AST, 1,65 STL, 0,21 BL, 1,65 TO

Sudden improvements from young players are obviously welcome and sometimes expected but it’s hard to prove whenever it’s the new normal or just a really good season. Harris is a good example for that dilemma as his steals and finishing at the rim made massive jumps last year. Are those here to stay? In the projections I hedged on the steals and I’m sceptical he has the tools to be one of the best finishing guards in the league so that’s why I assume some decline in his fantasy value. But if you disagree move him up in your rankings.
Also please notice that he played over 68 games only once in 4 years which is concerning.

Will Barton

44,2 FG%, 79,2 FT%, 1,89 3PM, 15,54 PTS, 5,24 REB, 3,89 AST, 0,98 STL, 0,61 BL, 1,8 TO

The most important part of his breakout last year was that he got a chance for it. Based on his per-minute numbers he didn’t do anything extraordinary, he just played more minutes than expected and he put together skills flashed in the previous seasons which is why I think he can do something similar again. But keep in mind this time around circumstances probably won’t be as friendly for him so don’t assume he will be even better.

Jamal Murray

44 FG%, 89,5 FT%, 2,1 3PM, 16,47 PTS, 3,65 REB, 3,36 AST, 0,97 STL, 0,34 BL, 2,02 TO

In a different situation I would be all over his mini-leap this year but 2 key additional veterans in the rotation [I include here Millsap’s come back] make it a little more murky he will have enough room to spread his wings. Also Nuggets are so focused on making the playoffs they signed… Isaiah Thomas? That one who among the worst rotation players in the league after his unfortunate injury? I”m not sure I understand this move but I don’t think such competition bodes well for Murray’s fantasy value.

Paul Millsap

45 FG%, 75,1 FT%, 1,03 3PM, 14,18 PTS, 6,68 REB, 2,58 AST, 1,02 STL, 1,06 BL, 1,91 TO

After a lost season due to injury it’s easy to assume a bounce back year [in Paul’s case especially in FT%] but there’s another force pulling Millsap’s value down – aging. Small-ish power forward at 34 years old are prime candidates for sudden drop in fantasy value so even though I assume it will be his last average season there’s way more risk than upside here.

Could be useful with trades/injuries [or in deeper leagues than 15 teams]:
Trey Lyles
If another injury hits Paul Millsap, Lyles will easily be in the Top150 but it’s worth noting he was a kind of iron-man in his prime so maybe last 2 years were only bad luck.

Just don’t bother with:
Isaiah Thomas, Torrey Craig, Mason Plumlee

Don’t forget to check the rest of the Denver Nuggets fantasy basketball projections..

Posted in Teams preview