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2021-22 NBA Fantasy Basketball Rankings: 10 tiers for each position

2021-22 NBA Fantasy Basketball Rankings: 10 tiers for each position

After rolling out my Top-150 NBA Fantasy overall rankings last week, I have broken down each position into tiers.

It is important to state that these rankings are based on a nine-category roto format (points, assists, rebounds, steals, blocks, three-pointers, field goal percentage, free-throw percentage and turnovers). Also, please note position eligibility is based on Yahoo’s fantasy settings and, as a result, many players qualify at multiple positions.

Guards

The two biggest question marks among all guards reside in Philadelphia and Brooklyn. Ben Simmons has (awkwardly) returned to Sixers, but it is still unclear whether Big Ben plans to "merely report to the team or truly rejoin the team," according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. Thus, Simmons is arguably the biggest boom-or-bust fantasy pick in the NBA this season.

Irving, on the other hand, is persona non grata in the borough of Brooklyn. Although Kyrie is eligible to participate in the Nets' away games, Brooklyn general manager Sean Marks said Tuesday that Irving will not be allowed to play or practice with the team at all until he gets vaccinated. “He has a choice to make, and he made his choice,” Marks told reporters Tuesday. “And my job here is to make what we deem is the best choices for the organization moving ahead and as a whole.” There is certainly still a chance Irving gets his jab and is cleared to play, but it’s too much of a risk to roll the dice until late in the draft, in my opinion.

Tier 1:
James Harden PG, SG (BKN) 
Luka Doncic PG, SG (DAL)
Stephen Curry PG, SG (GSW)
Damian Lillard PG (POR)

Tier 2:
Bradley Beal SG, SF (WAS)
Trae Young PG (ATL)
Jimmy Butler SF, PF, SG (MIA)
LeBron James PG, SG, SF, PF (LAL)

Tier 3:
Fred VanVleet PG, SG (TOR)
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander PG, SG (OKC)

Tier 4:
Jrue Holiday PG, SG (MIL)
Chris Paul PG (PHO)  
Zach LaVine SG, SF (CHI)
Donovan Mitchell PG, SG (UTAH)

Tier 5:
Khris Middleton SF, PF, SG (MIL)
Jaylen Brown SG, SF (BOS)
De'Aaron Fox PG (SAC) 
Devin Booker SG, SF, PG (PHO)

Tier 6:
LaMelo Ball PG, SG (CHA)
CJ McCollum PG, SG (POR)
Russell Westbrook PG (LAL)
Kevin Porter Jr. SG, SF, PG (HOU) 
Dejounte Murray PG, SG (SAS)
Malcolm Brogdon PG, SG (IND) 
Terry Rozier PG, SG (CHA)

Tier 7:
Mikal Bridges SG, SF (PHO)
Lonzo Ball PG, SG (CHI)
Gordon Hayward SG, SF (CHA)
Ja Morant PG (MEM)
Bogdan Bogdanovic SF, PF, SG (ATL)
Darius Garland PG, SG (CLE)
Anthony Edwards SG, SF (MIN)
DeMar DeRozan SF, PF, SG (CHI)
Kyle Lowry PG (MIA)
Tyrese Haliburton PG, SG (SAC)
Derrick White PG, SG (SAS)

Tier 8:
Mike Conley PG (UTAH)
Jalen Suggs PG, SG (ORL)
Spencer Dinwiddie PG, SG (WAS)
Cade Cunningham PG, SG (DET)
Ben Simmons PG (PHI)
Caris LeVert SG, SF (IND)
D’Angelo Russell PG, SG (MIN)
Collin Sexton PG, SG (CLE)
Marcus Smart PG, SG (BOS)
Jordan Poole PG, SG (GSW) 

Tier 9:
Andrew Wiggins SG, SF (GSW) 
Nickeil Alexander-Walker SG, SF, PG (NOP)
Devonte’ Graham PG, SG (NOP)
Evan Fournier SG, SF (NYK)
Buddy Hield SG, SF (SAC)
Norman Powell SG, SF (POR)
Kemba Walker PG (NYK)
RJ Barrett SG, SF (NYK)
Reggie Jackson PG, SG (LAC)
Dennis Schroder PG (BOS)
Jordan Clarkson PG, SG (UTAH)
Joe Ingles SG, SF, PF (UTAH)
Joe Harris SG, SF (BKN) 
Malik Beasley PG, SG, SF (MIN)
Kyrie Irving PG, SG (BKN) 

Tier 10: 
De’Anthony Melton PG, SG (MEM)
Jalen Green SG (HOU)
Klay Thompson SG, SF (GSW)
Dillon Brooks SG, SF (MEM)
Matisse Thybulle SG, SF (PHI)
T.J. McConnell PG, SG (IND)
Derrick Rose PG, SG (NYK)
Tim Hardaway Jr. SG, SF (DAL)
Kelly Oubre Jr. SG, SF, PF (CHA)
Eric Bledsoe PG, SG (LAC)
Kevin Huerter SG, SF (ATL)
Josh Giddey PG, SG, SF (OKC)
Tyrese Maxey PG, SG (PHI)

Forwards

Looking for a potential sleeper at forward? I’d suggest highlighting Pascal Siakam or Evan Mobley on your cheat sheet. 

After a phenomenal 2019-20 campaign, in which he was named to the All-NBA Second Team, Siakam failed to live up to expectations last season; his scoring average, three-point makes and effective field goal percentage all decreased. In addition, Pascal is still working his way back from surgery on a torn labrum, which has forced his ADP (Average Draft Position) to plummet. However, earlier this week, Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse said his star forward has been “going 100%” without contact for about 4-6 weeks, and could return later this month. 

Mobley’s stock is soaring after impressive performances and extended usage for the Cleveland Cavaliers in the preseason (he’s leading his team in playing time, logging 28.4 minutes per game). Mr. Mobley is probably worth the gamble, as his upside is emarkably enticing. 

Tier 1:
Nikola Jokic PF, C (DEN)

Tier 2:
Jayson Tatum SF, PF (BOS)
Giannis Antetokounmpo PF, C (MIL)
Kevin Durant SF, PF (BKN)
Joel Embiid PF, C (PHI)
Anthony Davis PF, C (LAL) 
Bradley Beal SG, SF (WAS)
Paul George SF, PF, SG (LAC)

Tier 3:
Jimmy Butler SF, PF, SG (MIA)
LeBron James PG, SG, SF, PF (LAL)
Domantas Sabonis PF, C (IND)
Bam Adebayo PF, C (MIA)
Michael Porter Jr. SF, PF (DEN
Zach LaVine SG, SF (CHI)

Tier 4:
Khris Middleton SF, PF, SG (MIL)
Jaylen Brown SG, SF (BOS)
Julius Randle PF, C (NYK)
Devin Booker SG, SF, PG (PHO)
Myles Turner PF, C (IND)
OG Anunoby SF, PF (TOR) 
Tobias Harris SF, PF (PHI)

Tier 5:
Richaun Holmes PF, C (SAC)
Brandon Ingram SF, PF (NOP)
Christian Wood PF, C (HOU)
Kristaps Porzingis PF, C (DAL)
John Collins PF, C (ATL)
Kevin Porter Jr. SG, SF, PG (HOU) 
Zion Williamson PF (NOP)

Tier 6:
Pascal Siakam PF, C (TOR)
Mikal Bridges SG, SF (PHO)
Jaren Jackson Jr. PF, C (MEM)
Chris Boucher PF, C (TOR)
Gordon Hayward SG, SF (CHA)
Bogdan Bogdanovic SF, PF, SG (ATL)
Anthony Edwards SG, SF (MIN)
DeMar DeRozan SF, PF, SG (CHI)
Robert Williams III C, PF (BOS)

Tier 7:
Draymond Green PF, C (GSW)
Jerami Grant SF, PF (DET)
Caris LeVert SG, SF (IND)
Robert Covington PF, C, SF (POR)
Miles Bridges SF, PF (CHA)
Kelly Olynyk PF, C (DET)
Buddy Hield SG, SF (SAC) 
Isaiah Stewart PF, C (DET)
Andrew Wiggins SG, SF (GSW) 

Tier 8:
Nickeil Alexander-Walker SG, SF, PG (NOP)
Evan Fournier SG, SF (NYK)
P.J. Washington PF, C (CHA)
Norman Powell SG, SF (POR)
Kyle Anderson SF, PF (MEM)
Jonathan Isaac SF, PF (ORL)
Evan Mobley C, PF (CLE)
Larry Nance Jr. PF, C (POR)
Harrison Barnes SF, PF (SAC)
Mason Plumlee PF, C (CHA)
Bobby Portis Jr. PF, C (MIL)
De’Andre Hunter SF, PF (ATL)
Daniel Gafford C, PF (WAS)

Tier 9:
Thaddeus Young PF, C, SF (SAS)
Joe Ingles SG, SF, PF (UTAH)
Lauri Markkanen PF, C (CLE)
Joe Harris SG, SF (BKN) 
Keldon Johnson SF, PF (SAS)
Malik Beasley PG, SG, SF (MIN)
T.J. Warren SF, PF (IND)
Jae'Sean Tate SF, PF (HOU)
Daniel Theis PF, C (HOU)
Brandon Clarke PF, C (MEM)
Saddiq Bey SF (DET)\
Klay Thompson SG, SF (GSW)
Derrick Favors C, PF (OKC)
Al Horford PF, C (BOS)

Tier 10:
Kyle Kuzma SF, PF (WAS)
Matisse Thybulle SG, SF (PHI)
Nicolas Batum SF, PF, SG (LAC)
Derrick Rose PG, SG (NYK)
Marcus Morris Sr. PF, C, SF (LAC)
Dillon Brooks SG, SF (MEM)
Alperen Sengun PF, C (HOU)
Tim Hardaway Jr. SG, SF (DAL)
Montrezl Harrell PF, C (WAS)
Kelly Oubre Jr. SG, SF, PF (CHA)
Nerlens Noel PF, C (NYK) 
Isaiah Roby C, PF (OKC)
Kevin Huerter SG, SF (ATL)
Khem Birch PF, C (TOR)
Aaron Gordon SF, PF (DEN)

Centers

Centers take on added importance in fantasy hoops due to the scarcity. That’s part of the reason why Jokic is viewed as the near-unanimous top overall selection in drafts this year. 

Last season, Jokic authored a season for the ages. Not only did he score a career-high 26.4 points and rip down 10.8 rebounds per game, but he also dished out an average of 8.3 dimes each night, joining Russell Westbrook and Oscar Robertson as the only players in NBA history to average at least 25 points, 10 boards and 8 assists over a season. Incredibly, Jokic tallied a total of 599 assists in 2020-21, which was the third-most in the entire league. Wilt Chamberlain, who led the NBA with 8.6 APG in 1967-68, is the only center to post a higher assist-average over a full season. As a fantasy cherry on top, the Joker proved incredibly durable, appearing in every game last season.

Tier 1:
Nikola Jokic PF, C (DEN)

Tier 2:
Karl-Anthony Towns C (MIN)

Tier 3:
Giannis Antetokounmpo PF, C 
Joel Embiid PF, C (PHI)
Anthony Davis PF, C (LAL)

Tier 4:
Nikola Vucevic C (CHI)
Domantas Sabonis PF, C (IND)
Bam Adebayo PF, C (MIA)
Rudy Gobert C (UTAH)

Tier 5:
Myles Turner PF, C (IND)
Clint Capela C (ATL)
Julius Randle PF, C (NYK)
Richaun Holmes PF, C (SAC)
Deandre Ayton C (PHO)
Christian Wood PF, C (HOU) 
Kristaps Porzingis PF, C (DAL)
John Collins PF, C (ATL)

Tier 6:
Jaren Jackson Jr. PF, C (MEM)
Jusuf Nurkic C (POR)
Pascal Siakam PF, C (TOR)
Chris Boucher PF, C (TOR) 
Robert Williams III C, PF (BOS)
Jonas Valanciunas C (NOP)
Draymond Green PF, C (GSW)
Robert Covington PF, C, SF (POR)
Jarrett Allen C (CLE)
Kelly Olynyk PF, C (DET)
Isaiah Stewart PF, C (DET)

Tier 7:
P.J. Washington PF, C (CHA)
Evan Mobley C, PF (CLE)
Mitchell Robinson C (NYK)
Larry Nance Jr. PF, C (POR)
Jakob Poeltl C (SAS)
Wendell Carter Jr. C (ORL)
Brook Lopez C (MIL)
Mason Plumlee PF, C (CHA)
Bobby Portis Jr. PF, C (MIL)

Tier 8:
Daniel Gafford C, PF (WAS)
Thaddeus Young PF, C, SF (SAS)
Lauri Markkanen PF, C (CLE)
Daniel Theis PF, C (HOU)
Brandon Clarke PF, C (MEM)
Ivica Zubac C (LAC)
Derrick Favors C, PF (OKC)
Al Horford PF, C (BOS)

Tier 9:
Marcus Morris Sr. PF, C, SF (LAC)
Mo Bamba C (ORL)
Montrezl Harrell PF, C (WAS)
Thomas Bryant C (WAS)
Nerlens Noel PF, C (NYK) 
Alperen Sengun PF, C (HOU) 

Tier 10:
Khem Birch PF, C (TOR)
Isaiah Roby C, PF (OKC)
Andre Drummond C (PHI) 
Steven Adams C (MEM)
Serge Ibaka PF, C (LAC) 
James Wiseman C (GSW)
Naz Reid C (MIN)
Marvin Bagley III PF, C (SAC)
LaMarcus Aldridge PF, C (BKN)
Nicolas Claxton PF, C (BKN)
Kevin Love PF, C (CLE)
Hassan Whiteside PF, C (UTAH)

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