NBA Fantasy

Best Draft Position Fantasy Basketball: Ranking Which Pick is Best for 2021

Adam Taylor McKillop
Best draft positions for fantasy basketball in 2021 ranked from worst to best.
Best draft positions for fantasy basketball in 2021 ranked from worst to best. / Christian Petersen/GettyImages
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Fantasy basketball draft season is officially here. That means fantasy managers are naming their teamsscouring rankings and digging for sleepers.

Some leagues add an extra wrinkle to the draft process: allowing managers to pick their draft slot. This can be based on a pre-draft competition, random draw or standings from the past year.

That can be a tough decision, but The Duel is here to help with a ranking, from worst to best, of the best draft positions for fantasy basketball in 2021, based on 12-team snake draft leagues.

Best Draft Position Fantasy Basketball 2021

12. 12th Overall

Picking back-to-back can give owners a sense of control over their rosters, but there's a big tier of players with an average draft position (ADP) in the early to mid second round that are all comparable values, meaning you've got the worst first-round pick without getting much of an edge in Round 2.

11. 11th Overall

This is pretty much the same story as the 12th overall pick.

10. 10th overall

More of the same at No. 10. The perk here is that you have the best chance of this group to have a mid-tier first-round pick fall into your lap.

9. 7th Overall

Landing the 7th pick means likely missing out completely on the elite top-6 players in fantasy basketball. The tier below these top-6 sees a drop-off in value without players such as Luka Doncic and James Harden. Then, in Round 2, you're stuck with pick No. 18, another drop down to players that cannot carry an entire fantasy roster.

8. 8th Overall

The No. 8 overall pick follows much of the same reasoning, missing out on that core of top-6 fantasy players that can carry your roster all year long. On the other hand, this lands you a higher pick in the second round and hopefully a better chance at some star power.

7. 9th Overall

The early second round features a number of similar players based on their ADP. Jimmy Butler, Trae Young and Bradley Beal flash similar values and while you'll miss out on the elite of the elite in Round 1, this group showcases high levels of consistency throughout the year.

6. 6th Overall

The top-6 of fantasy basketball players is exactly where fantasy managers want to be. The likes of Giannis Antetokounmpo and Steph Curry can carry a fantasy roster throughout the year and should be coveted selections in the draft. Then, in Round 2, you'll see a similar group of value players such as Donovan Mitchell, LaMelo Ball or Devin Booker.

5. 5th Overall

Very similar to picking No. 6, but provides better value in Round 1.

4. 2nd Overall

The end of Round 2 sees a drop-off in value, and having that 23rd overall pick doesn't leave you in a great spot. Having 20-pick gaps can also make it tough later in the draft to react to runs on positions, potentially leaving you high and dry at certain positions.

3. 3rd Overall

As mentioned above, the top-6 carries your fantasy roster. But, the third pick sees a potential drop-off in value in Round 2.

2. 4th Overall

The No. 4 overall picks lands second on our list because of your ability to land a superstar fantasy player in Round 1 and the best value in later rounds. Picking No. 21 in the second round showcases similar players such as Devin Booker, LaMelo Ball or LeBron James.

1. 1st Overall

Fantasy basketball is unique because of the dominance that the No. 1 pick can give you. Almost every draft expert pegs jack-of-all-trades Nikola Jokic as the consensus best pick. And that's exactly why, he'll stuff your stats in nearly every category.


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Adam Taylor McKillop is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Adam Taylor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username atmckillop. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel. 

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