NBA Rookie Draft Ranking and Fantasy Outlook: Jeremy Lamb

The Houston Rockets selected  shooting guard Jeremy Lamb with the twelfth pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.

Lamb’s career stats at Connecticut:

75 Games, 14.1 points, 4.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 steals, 48.1 FG%, 80.5 FT%

Fantasy Advice:  The Rockets recently traded Chase Budinger and the only real threat at small forward is Chandler Parsons.   While Lamb is probably more of a shooting guard type player, if he can adjust quickly he should be able to carve out some nice minutes in a platoon with Parsons, much like Budinger did last season.  He’s 6’5, but he’s got a 6’11 wingspan which should help him if the Rockets decide to give him some run at small forward in a small lineup.  It’s really his only hope of getting solid minutes since the Rockets still have Kevin Martin full time at shooting guard.

Lamb is a great offensive threat with an excellent shot.  He managed to hit 60% of his two point shots last season.  He’s got a good three point shot too and he can stroke it from well outside the three point line, but he’s going to have to keep working on it to develop into elite status.  He attempted 6.2 threes per game last season, but only hit them at a 33.6% rate.  He’s a solid career free throw shooter at 80.5%.

As we get further down the list of the players drafted in 2012, it gets much more difficult to make early fantasy predictions.  It does appear that Houston is going with youth, so anything is possible for Lamb this season.  Keep an eye on summer league and training camp to get a feel for his role.




NBA Rookie Draft Ranking and Fantasy Outlook: Terrence Ross

The Toronto Raptors selected SG Terrence Ross with the eighth pick in the 2012 NBA draft.

Ross’ career stats at Washington:

69 Games, 12.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, .9 steals, .7 blocks, 45.2 FG%, 76.3 FT%

Fantasy Advice:  Terrence Ross was a surprise pick by the Raptors at number eight, especially with Austin Rivers still on the board.  I’m not sure what the Raptors see in Ross, but there must be something.

Ross has a good three point shot, launching 5.5 per game last season and hitting 37.1% of them.   Whether or not he can consistently get to the basket remains to be seen.   His defensive stats of .9 blocks and 1.4 steals per game are fairly impressive and point to a well rounded fantasy asset.  He also showed good rebounding ability with 6.4 a game last season.  He pretty much amounts to what most fantasy owners describe as a typical ‘three and D’ type player.  He’ll play some tough defense and be asked to hit the occasional three pointer, which isn’t the type of player most fantasy owners are looking for.

He’s a pretty solid athlete at 6’7, 200 pounds with 3% body fat.  He also put on a show with a 38 inch vertical.

Ross is going to be a fantasy wildcard in Toronto, so his final draft position will depend on training camp and how the Raptors handle the other small forward/shooting guard competitors on the roster during free agency.  They still have DeMar DeRozan at SG and it’s going to be pretty difficult to start Ross over DeMar, so it could be tough to find many minutes initially for Ross.

NBA Rookie Draft Ranking and Fantasy Outlook: Dion Waiters

The Cleveland Cavaliers selected Dion Waiters with the fourth pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.

Waiters’ career stats at Syracuse:

71 Games, 9.7 points, 2.0 assists, 1.9 rebounds, 1.5 steals,  45.3 FG%, 75.3 FT%

Fantasy Advice:  The Cavs were looking for a scorer to pair with Kyrie Irving in the backcourt and they most definitely wanted Bradley Beal, however Beal was long gone and Cleveland decided to take a gamble and go with Waiters over Harrison Barnes.

All I’ve seen from Cleveland fans is that ‘Waiters never started a game at Syracuse’.  Whatever.   The guy has a pretty broad skillset and can probably thrive in whatever role is chosen for him.  He can drive to the basket or hit the three.  He’s also pretty good with the ball in his hands as a playmaker and could easily end up in a Tyreke Evans type of role.

With Waiters,  it’s difficult to guage his offensive contributions due to the fact that he only played 24.1 minutes per game, but if you convert his stats to a per/40 minute basis, the picture gets much clearer:

FG attempts per 40: Waiters = 16.03 / Beal = 12.41 / Ross = 17.28 / Rivers = 14.24 / Lamb = 14.34

Points per 40: Waiters = 20.97 / Beal = 17.24 / Ross = 21. 10 / Rivers = 18.67 / Lamb = 19.05

If you break some of the top offensive players of the draft down into a per/40 basis, Waiters can hold his own with the best of them.  Cleveland probably isn’t going to do much this year and they have the luxury of putting Waiters into the starting lineup to build future chemistry with Irving.  Combine this with the fact that the Cavs desperately need scoring and it looks like Waiters could possibly be a fantasy steal and may come at a cheaper draft price than Bradley Beal.

NBA Rookie Draft Ranking and Fantasy Outlook: Bradley Beal

The Washington Wizards selected Florida’s Bradley Beal with the third pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.

Beal’s career stats at Florida:

37 Games, 14.8 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.2 assists, 1.4 steals, 44.5 FG%, 76.9 FT%

Fantasy Advice:  Beal fell into the perfect draft scenario for his skill set.  The Wizards have an opening day lineup of John Wall, Trevor Ariza, Emeka Okafor and Nene.  All they are missing is a shooting guard with a dependable outside shot.  Welcome to Washington Bradley Beal.

Beal took 5 three pointers a game at Florida and hit them at a 33.9% clip.  He’s going to have to continue to work on his shot to add a few points to that percentage, but he’s got the right mechanics and mental ability to do so.  If he can consistently hit the jumper, he’s going to play and open things up for John Wall.  If his shot goes south to a level that is worse than Jordan Crawford’s, then he’s going to see the pine while Crawford plays.  It’s pretty simple, the Wiz are asking just one thing out of him, hit the shot that opens the floor.

Another quality that hasn’t been talked about too much is Beal’s rebounding ability.  He managed to grab 6.7 rebounds a game, which is pretty solid from the guard spot.  If that skill translates to the NBA, he could be looking at Dwyane Wade type rebound figures from the shooting guard position.

Beal will be an attractive fantasy draft target for owners who need to bolster their three point category, while hopefully getting decent points, rebounds and steals.

Dwyane Wade to Have Knee Surgery, Miss Olympics

Dwyane Wade will opt to have surgery on his troublesome left knee.  (Source:  Pro Basketball Talk, NBC Sports)

Fantasy Advice:  This is something that many people suspected while watching Wade struggle thoughout the playoffs.   There aren’t any reports detailing the medical findings or upcoming surgery and it’s simply being described as a ‘cleanup’ procedure that will only require him to be on crutches for a couple of days.  It doesn’t  sound like it will be anything that should affect his 2012-2013 fantasy value.  If anything, the extra rest that he’ll get from missing the Olympics will only help his performance next season.