For those who play in fantasy basketball auction leagues, there are essentially two main routes you can go, as far as constructing your team. The first is to grab one or two elite studs and fill out your roster with lower-priced, sleeper options (aka, stars and scrubs). The other involves not spending too much on any single player and mostly avoiding the bargain bin.
No matter what strategy you wish to employ, it's important to get familiar with the pre-draft auction values for the top players at every position. This will help in determining whether you want to pay up for the elite options, and whether there are any values as you venture further down the list.
Below, we will delve into the top-five auction values at every position in fantasy basketball for the 2019-20 NBA season. We will also provide one bargain bin option (i.e., players you can get for a dollar) toward the end of your draft.
1. NBA Best Players – Fantasy Basketball Point Guards
1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors (Yahoo! Auction Value: $67) – Stephen Curry has the potential to put up a career fantasy season, considering the Golden State Warriors no longer have Kevin Durant and will be without Klay Thompson for a large chunk of the year. Curry will have to do a lot of heavy lifting on offense, and could be in line for a monster season if he can keep the efficiency numbers up to par.
2. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $54)
3. Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets (Yahoo! Auction Value: $47) – Joining his third NBA team, Kyrie Irving will also be asked to score a lot while Durant sits out the season following his Achilles rupture in the NBA Finals. While Kyrie will have the opportunity in Brooklyn, it's important to note he has yet to play anything close to a full season, missing 76 games in the last four years alone.
4. Russell Westbrook, Houston Rockets (Yahoo! Auction Value: $46)
5. Kemba Walker, Boston Celtics (Yahoo! Auction Value: $41)
2. NBA Best Players – Fantasy Basketball Shooting Guards
1. James Harden, Houston Rockets (Yahoo! Auction Value: $67)
2. Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards (Yahoo! Auction Value: $47)
3. Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns (Yahoo! Auction Value: $40) – Now that Ricky Rubio has joined the Phoenix Suns, the Devin Booker point guard experiment is over. Expect a dip in his assist numbers, but another dominant season with some improvement in three-point percentage and turnovers.
4. Donovan Mitchell, Utah Jazz (Yahoo! Auction Value: $25)
5. D'Angelo Russell, Golden State Warriors (Yahoo! Auction Value: $20) – After playing the first four years of his career at point guard, D'Angelo Russell will slide over to shooting guard in the new-look Warriors' offense. The hope is that the team's elite efficiency can rub off on Russell, who is a career 41.9 percent shooter from the field.
3. NBA Best Players – Fantasy Basketball Small Forwards
1. LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $53) – While he has played small forward for most of his career, LeBron James is essentially a position-less player, and will now take on the role of starting point guard for the fascinatingly configured Los Angeles Lakers starting lineup. Expect another typically impressive stat line for LeBron, though there will likely be rest days scattered throughout the season.
2. Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles Clippers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $49)
3. Paul George, Los Angeles Clippers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $47) – Paul George's early-season availability is in serious doubt as he recovers from offseason shoulder surgeries. If it leads to a price reduction at your auction, George could deliver tremendous value by season's end.
4. Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat (Yahoo! Auction Value: $45)
5. Otto Porter Jr., Chicago Bulls (Yahoo! Auction Value: $25)
4. NBA Best Players – Fantasy Basketball Power Forwards
1. Anthony Davis, Los Angeles Lakers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $68) – Due to his refusal to play the five, Anthony Davis will remain locked in at power forward on the Lakers. He is arguably fantasy's best player on a per-game basis, and it will be interesting to see if he can unlock a new level playing next to LeBron this season.
2. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks (Yahoo! Auction Value: $67)
3. John Collins, Atlanta Hawks (Yahoo! Auction Value: $27)
4. Kristaps Porzingis, Dallas Mavericks (Yahoo! Auction Value: $25) – Kristaps Porzingis is all set to make his Dallas Mavericks debut in 2019-20. While the upside is tantalizing at his reduced price, it's been reported that he can miss anywhere from 15-20 games due to load management.
5. Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans (Yahoo! Auction Value: $23)
5. NBA Best Players – Fantasy Basketball Centers
1. Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves (Yahoo! Auction Value: $61)
2. Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets (Yahoo! Auction Value: $60) – After a tremendous fantasy campaign last season, Nikola Jokic has upside for more this year. A potential increase in scoring is always possible for Jokic, which would make him arguably the top option in fantasy thanks to his elite assist numbers out of the center spot.
3. Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $58)
4. Myles Turner, Indiana Pacers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $36) – While Myles Turner may never become a 20-point scorer, he did have a career season in 2018-19, averaging an elite 2.7 blocks per game. Any incremental improvements he can make in scoring and rebounding will only increase his value.
5. Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz (Yahoo! Auction Value: $34)
6. Fantasy Basketball Bargain Picks
1. Darius Garland, PG, Cleveland Cavaliers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $1) – Darius Garland is in line to start at point guard for the Cleveland Cavaliers, and can be a steady source of points on a talent-deprived roster.
2. Joe Harris, SG, Brooklyn Nets (Yahoo! Auction Value: $1)
3. Bojan Bogdanovic, SF, Utah Jazz (Yahoo! Auction Value: $1)
4. Zach Collins, C, Portland Trail Blazers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $1) – With a lot of roster turnover in the front court, Zach Collins is line to start at power forward for the Portland Trailblazers and could put up strong numbers based on his per-36 averages.
5. Ivica Zubac, C, Los Angeles Clippers (Yahoo! Auction Value: $1)
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