NBA Draft 2012 Results: 10 Rookies Who'll Have Biggest Fantasy Impact
Now that the 2012 NBA draft is complete, basketball enthusiasts will begin prepping for their fantasy drafts.
No. 1 overall selection Anthony Davis has the potential to become one of the NBA's elite stat sheet stuffers, possessing the ability to score, rebound and block shots at a high level.
With the results in, draft speculation has officially turned into reality.
Here are 10 rookies who will have big fantasy impacts this season.
Anthony Davis (New Orleans Hornets)
The consensus No. 1 pick for months now, the coronation of Anthony Davis officially began on Thursday evening.
Davis will step in immediately as the starting center for the Hornets, and although he's only 19 years old, will make an immediate impact.
Davis has the potential to be a rebounding machine, but his added fantasy value will come from his outrageous wingspan, which will yield blocks aplenty in the Big Easy.
The No. 1 pick will also have the ability to grow immensely on the offensive end at the next level. With a nice jump shot and some developed post moves, expect Davis' offensive repertoire to grow exponentially in the NBA.
Bradley Beal (Washington Wizards)
The draft's premier shooter, Bradley Beal, will come into the NBA with a role cut out for him on the Washington Wizards.
With 2010 No. 1 overall draft pick John Wall running the point, Beal will have plenty of opportunities to fill it up on the wing.
A volume shooter and scorer, Beal averaged 14.6 points per game in his freshman year at Florida under Billy Donovan. Although he only shot 33.9 percent from beyond the arc last season, he will be an integral piece of the Wizards' plans moving forward.
With Nene, Wall, Trevor Ariza and now Beal, the Wizards have compiled a nice corps of young players.
Expect the Wizards to be one of the Eastern Conference's most improved teams in 2012-2013.
Dion Waiters (Cleveland Cavaliers)
Although he came off the bench at Syracuse, Waiters will be a nice scorer at the professional level.
Alongside 2011 No. 1 selection and Rookie of the Year Kyrie Irving, Waiters will find plenty of open looks, and should be able to post similar numbers to the ones he posted with the Orange.
Averaging 12.6 points per game last season, Waiters should be able to maintain that pace with one of the Eastern Conference's youngest teams. Shots will be available for Waiters all over the floor, especially with no go-to scorer on the roster.
Damian Lillard (Portland Trailblazers)
Although he's not a prototypical point guard, Damian Lillard will slot in as the Blazers' point man from day one.
A pure scorer with seemingly infinite range, Lillard averaged 24.5 points per game in his junior season at Weber State.
A 46.7 percent shooter from the field and 40.9 percent shooter from three, Lillard should have no problem filling it up in Portland during his rookie campaign.
The Blazers have some nice role players, and Lillard will be a great weapon who will help stretch the floor. Also an adequate passer, Lillard should have some added value for fantasy owners next season.
Thomas Robinson (Sacramento Kings)
After Dion Waiters was selected by the Cleveland Cavaliers at No. 4 overall, the Sacramento Kings received a gift when Thomas Robinson fell to them at No. 5.
Alongside Tyreke Evans and DeMarcus Cousins, Robinson will join a franchise in Sacramento that's very much in flux.
With averages of 17.7 points and 11.9 rebounds per game in an outstanding junior year at Kansas, Robinson will pay immediate dividends on the offensive and defensive glass.
Although he may fight to average double-digit points in his rookie season, Robinson is a sure fire double-double threat each and every time he steps on the floor.
Harrison Barnes (Golden State Warriors)
North Carolina's Harrison Barnes took a surprising tumble down the draft board on Thursday evening.
Scooped up by the Golden State Warriors with pick No. 7, Barnes is set to contribute immediately as a pro.
Although they have Dorell Wright at the small forward position, Barnes is far more versatile. After averaging 17.1 points and 5.2 rebounds per game, Barnes proved he was an NBA-ready shooter who's capable of filling it up.
While he doesn't have ideal range, Barnes' ability to knock down mid-range jumpers at a consistent level will be imperative to his success as a professional.
With much more upside than a player like Wright, Barnes should be a contributor for both the Warriors and fantasy owners in his rookie season.
Jeremy Lamb (Houston Rockets)
A surprising selection at No. 12 overall, the Houston Rockets used the pick they acquired from the Milwaukee Bucks to select Connecticut guard Jeremy Lamb.
With shooting guard Kevin Martin set to hit the free-agent market this weekend, Lamb is a logical fit with the Rockets.
Lamb filled it up at UConn last season, averaging 17.7 points on 47.8 percent shooting from the field. Although he has the offensive tools to start, expect Lamb to come off the bench in his rookie season.
Although Courtney Lee is a restricted free agent, it has been reported that the Rockets will retain him. Behind Lee, Lamb will have an opportunity to grow, and could be one of the league's best scorers off the bench in a short amount of time.
Moe Harkless (Philadelphia 76ers)
All along the consensus was that the Philadelphia 76ers would select a big man with their first-round pick.
One of the country's standout freshman a year ago, Harkless averaged 15.3 points and 8.6 rebounds in his lone collegiate season.
With Lou Williams opting out of his contract, the Sixers had some serious voids to fill on their bench.
An instinctive scorer, Harkless will come in and join Thaddeus Young, Nikola Vucevic and Lavoy Allen on a solid second unit.
On a team devoid of any natural scorers, Harkless could be a nice late-round sleeper pick in fantasy leagues next season.
Kendall Marshall (Phoenix Suns)
A great fit with the Phoenix Suns, North Carolina point guard Kendall Marshall will flourish in the desert.
The most pure point guard in this year's draft class, Marshall is a fantastic passer who will thrive in the NBA. Although he doesn't have a polished shot, Marshall is a great ball-handler, and is very unselfish.
If Steve Nash re-signs with the Suns this offseason Marshall will be able to learn behind one of the league's greatest point guards.
However, a more likely scenario is that Nash bolts for a chance to capture an NBA title, and Marshall will be thrust into the spotlight from day one.
Averaging nearly 10 assists per game last season for the Tar Heels, expect Marshall will develop into one of the league's craftiest point guards in a short time.
Jared Sullinger (Boston Celtics)
With Brandon Bass having already opted out of his contract, the Celtics were in need of some frontcourt depth.
With pick No. 21 the Celtics selected Ohio State big man Jared Sullinger, who proved to have one of the most volatile stocks in this year's draft.
Once projected as a top 10 selection, Sullinger is a big, but able body with some polished post moves.
Assuming his health checks out, Sullinger could be an absolute steal for the Celtics. In need of some consistent frontcourt scoring, Sullinger is built in the mold of Brandon Bass and Glen Davis, however his low-post skills give him an edge.
With Brandon Bass on his way out, Sullinger could become a starter for one of the league's most veteran teams. Sullinger will threaten to be a double-double threat, and a fantasy savior in his rookie season.
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