With the NBA season coming up fast, many fans will be heading into fantasy basketball drafts. Keeping that in mind, I've decided to write up an article on some mystery players to select that will take your team from being a middle of the road team to a league-winning team. So without further adieu, here we go!
1. Corey Maggette, SG/SF, Milwaukee Bucks
While Maggette is often thought of as a bad pick because he didn't turn out to be a star in Golden State, he's actually a great pick for the mid-rounds. Remember that Maggette is now a member of the Milwaukee Bucks, and will be allowed and asked to play a much bigger role with his slashing and finishing inside.
Last year with the Warriors he put up solid numbers. He averaged 19.8 PPG and 5.3 RPG. Like I said, he doesn't sound like a flashy player but given those numbers, you can see that he will make an impact on your fantasy team.
2. John Salmons, SG/SF, Milwaukee Bucks
Salmons, who has been a journey-man throughout his NBA career, finally found a place to stick around and play. He's playing for the Milwaukee Bucks as well, and is preparing to have another huge season for them. Last season, he was traded to the Bucks mid-season and came in and lead them to the playoffs.
Down the stretch of the season, Salmons was putting up almost 23-25 every single night, but he wasn't heralded much about it. Last season, he averaged 15.4 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 2.8 APG, and 1.2 SPG.
Now keep in mind that he was traded mid-season so I would challenge you to go look up the numbers he put up with the Bucks alone. Trust me, this guy is a good pick even in the first six rounds or so, he's going to put up great numbers for your team.
3. Al Jefferson, PF/C, Utah Jazz
Al Jefferson has been a big name for quite some time after being the centerpiece in the trade that Boston acquired Kevin Garnett in. Obviously, he didn't work out in Minnesota due to injury and his lack of co-existence with Kevin Love. That being said, the T-Wolves shipped him off to the Utah Jazz. The Jazz lost Carlos Boozer in free agency to the Chicago Bulls, and they will be asking Jefferson to start power forward for them more than likely.
Assuming they want to keep Milsap off the bench, that would be the case unless they want to start Jefferson at center. However, because of the injuries, Jefferson's fantasy stock has been down as of late, but I think you should still go ahead and pick him up this season. He's been working extremely hard on getting his knee back in shape, and especially with switching to a new city, he will make want to prove himself even more.
Last season, Jefferson put up 17.1 PPG, 9.3 RPG, and 1.3 BPG. Look at those numbers and tell me that Jefferson isn't a huge factor when he's on the court? Sure, if he gets injured you'll just have to drop him for another big man, but almost averaging a double-double is something you can't pass up on.
4. Anthony Randolph, PF, New York Knicks
Randolph was acquired in the David Lee trade this offseason from Golden State, and is yet another former Warrior with loads of talent, but that just hasn't rose to that talent yet. In New York, you can expect D'Antoni to use Randolph because of his quickness and athleticism for his position.
Last year Randolph averaged 11.6 PPG, 6.5 RPG, and 1.5 BPG. Take into consideration that he 749 minutes all season in 33 games because of an injury. That's pretty impressive, because if you do the math that comes out to only being 22.7 MPG. If he can put up those kind of numbers in that kind of time, what will he do in New York if he is somehow able to win the starting power forward job?
I think you could see lineups with Amare Stoudemire starting at center and Randolph at power forward. So yeah, Randolph would be another very solid option for your team.
5. Andray Blatche, PF, Washington Wizards
Personally, I would make Blatche a Top Four round pick, if not Top Three or Top Two. He proved last year that he could put a team on his back, and even though he did make a couple judgement mistakes because of his youthful thinking, he still put the team on his back and carried them.
Blatche averaged 14.1 PPG and 6.3 RPG, but again I would challenge you to look up what kind of numbers he put up in the last half of the season. He's going to pick up his numbers again this year after an offseason of hard work, although he did break his foot and that has hampered some of his ability to work on his game.
Most defenses will be focusing on John Wall, and with the growth of JaVale McGee, that opens up some post room for Blatche to go to work.
Well, there are five options for your fantasy basketball teams. They aren't really "mysterious," but they also aren't known as being huge fantasy basketball players. Hope you guys enjoyed the read, and I would love to get comments from you guys regarding other players you think are "mystery" fantasy players. I'll be writing up a couple more of these pieces in the coming weeks, so I will probably be thinking of some players that you name already.