If you drafted a player who might be out for a few weeks (or months) and need to find someone to plug into your roster while they heal up, or just want to start fast out the gate, here’s a few guys that could start hot this season…
Jerian Grant – Chi PG
With Zach LaVine and now Kris Dunn on the shelf to start the season, the Bulls will turn to Grant to man the point until Dunn is able to return to action. Granted, it’s only preseason, but he did put up 10 points, 9 boards and 8 dimes while chipping in 2 steals and a three in 27 minutes of action Friday night. Not to hate on Grant, but this has less to do with his overall potential than it does about the dire situation for talent in Chicago. Scoop him if you need a PG to start the season.
Malik Monk – Cha SG
Hornets cornerstone Nicolas Batum always seems to miss an extended amount of time, usually leaving Kemba Walker solely responsible for shouldering the offensive load. Charlotte wisely brought in the former Kentucky Wildcat to help on that front. Monk is known for being a scorer, and should have no problem putting up 12-15 shots per night with Batum on the mend.
Joel Embiid – Phi C
Mr. “Trust the Process” looks great in the limited time we’ve seen him on the hardwood this year. If I owned Embiid, I would be looking for a trade partner after the first couple weeks, targeting a top 15-20 player in return. You could choose to ride out the season with his historically (projected) early returns, but numbers don’t lie–especially for big men in the NBA. The number I’m talking about is his 31 games played out of a possible 246 to start his career. I’m not calling him a bust or wishing bad vibes on the young star, just pointing out the risk-reward you need to weigh if you’re a fantasy owner.
Patty Mills – SAS PG
With Tony Parker out until the holidays at the earliest, look for Coach Popovich to have Mills split time with projected starter Dejounte Murray to lend some stability on a team that needs to stay competitive in a ridiculously stacked Western Conference. Mills should be good for decent points and assists while earning his value in the 3’s and FT% departments.
Khris Middleton – Mil SG/SF
The 2017-2018 season might be a reversal of how Middleton’s 2016-2017 season went (sans any injuries). Meaning, last year we saw Khris close out the season with Top 40 value; while this year he may pick up where he left off, only to taper off slightly once Jabari Parker returns. Any drop in production shouldn’t be substantial, but usage and shot opportunities will surely take a hit whenever the Bucks are back to a full squad.
It’s important to get those early season wins and start out on the right foot. Hopefully these names helped you out. If you haven’t already, check out my 2017-2018 Sleepers article as well as our other fantasy basketball articles.
Also make sure to hit me up on Twitter @FantasyHoopsMat if you have any fantasy basketball questions or want to talk NBA.