When you break it down to its simplest form, the sole purpose of playing fantasy ball is building the best possible team you can. The added advantage is meeting some great people and for me with the Worldwide Fantasy leagues, some of the closest lifelong friends I have had the pleasure of meeting. We even have one league in its second year now that we get together to draft live.

Mate ship aside, we all still want to kick everyone else’s ass in the league though πŸ™‚

How much preparation to you put into your fantasy draft? Do you fly by the seat of your pants, hoping that the best player will fall to you when your pick comes? Are you meticulous and stringently plan around every possible scenario or are you one that knows if you have a bad draft you can trade your way out of it to be competitive when it counts?

I have a little insight for you! There is no wrong or right answer in fantasy. If there was a foolproof plan that you could follow, everyone would do it and fantasy sports would be a boring venture. There are an enormous number of strategies and plans that can bring you the W, you just have to figure out which one you want to go with.

One thing for certain is you need a good team but where do you start? Who do you start with? Who are the best players to build around? Do I need to have the best talent or can I build a contender with complimentary pieces? These are the questions I have had over the years and we can answer all of them right here.

When assessing who you can take in your draft there are certain tiers of players. You have franchise cornerstones or studs, guys that get the lion-share touches on their respective teams and deliver you the most counting statistics. You have efficient players that don’t hurt your team anywhere but are still just as important as your best player. You have specialists, guys that contribute a high volume in a certain category and can win you your matchup no matter if it’s head to head, roto or points based scoring. Let’s take a look through the top echelon of players and ascertain their particular value for your squad.


These guys will be your first round picks, they’ll be the ones on your squad that you will build around. I will list them in order of preference and also give you their strengths.

Anthnony Davis PFC NOR (P R S B FG%)
Steph Curry PG GSW (P S A 3’s ft%)
James Harden SG HOU (P S A ft%)
Kevin Durant SF OKC (P R A S B 3’s fg% ft% 3%)
LeBron James SFPF CLE (P R A S 3’s fg%
Russell Westbrook PG OKC (P R A S ft%)
Chris Paul PG LAC (P A 3’s fg% ft%)
DeMarcus Cousins PFC SAC (P R B ft%)
John Wall PG WAS ( P A S)
Jimmy Butler SGSF CHI (P S ft%)
Damien Lillard PG POR (P A 3’s)
Paul George SFPF IND (P R S ft%)


These are the second tier of guys that will be available through the early to middle stages of your draft. These are the guys that can literally win you your season when utilised correctly. You will find any number of these guys as a staple on any of the elite teams in your league.

Paul Millsap PF ATL ( P R S B fg% ft%)
LaMarcus Aldridge PFC SAS ( P R B fg% ft%)
Kawhi Leonard SGSF SAS (S B 3’s ft%)
Klay Thompson SGSF GSW (P 3’s ft%)
Blake Griffin PF LAC ( P R A fg%)
Kyrie Irving PG CLE ( P A 3’s ft%)
Draymond Green SFPF GSW ( R S B ft%)
Marc Gasol C MEM ( P R A B fg% ft%)
Serge Ibaka PFC OKC ( R B 3’s ft%)
Carmelo Anthony SF NYK ( P ft%)
Chris Bosh PFC MIA ( P R B 3’s fg% ft%)
Rudy Gobert C UTA ( R B fg%)
Gordon Hayward SGSF UTA ( P A S 3’s ft%)
Eric Bledsoe PGSG PHX ( P A S )
Rudy Gay SF SAC ( P 3’s ft%)
Nikola Vucevic PFC ORL ( P R fg%)
Jeff Teague PG ATL ( P A 3’s fg% ft%)
Kyle Lowry PG TOR ( P A S )
Kevin Love PFC CLE ( P R 3’s ft%)
Goran Dragic PG MIA ( P R A S 3’s ft%)
Derrick Favors PFC UTA ( R B fg%)
Al Jefferson C CHA ( P R B fg%)
Brook Lopez C BKN ( P B fg% ft%)
Victor Oladipo SG ORL ( P R A S)


When we are looking for middle of the pack value selections, these are the guys we want. They offer just the right mix of production to be a handy addition through the middle rounds of the draft.

Bradley Beal SG WAS
Greg Monroe PFC MIL
Brandon Knight PGSG PHX
Nicolas Batum SGSF CHA
Chandler Parsons SF DAL
Monta Ellis SG IND
Reggie Jackson PG DET
Tobias Harris SFPF ORL
DeMar DeRozan SGSF TOR
Khris Middleton SGSF MIL
Kemba Walker PG CHA
Mike Conley PG MEM
Thad Young PF BKN
Ty Lawson PG HOU
Jrue Holiday PG NOR
Tyson Chandler C PHX
Wes Matthews SGSF DAL
Isaiah Thomas PG BOS
Danilo Gallinari SFPF DEN
Tyreke Evans SGSF NOR
Deron Williams PG DAL
DeMarre Carroll SF TOR


It’s getting late, all the good ones are taken and you’re looking for some special company. Don’t just take anyone, you want to select someone that will surprise you. The late night specials.

Jarrett Jack PG BKN
Robin Lopez C NYK
Terrence Jones PF HOU
Alec Burks SG UTA
David Lee PF BOS
Joe Johnson SGSF BKN
Wilson Chandler SGSF DEN
Ersan Ilyasova PF DET
Jordan Clarkson PG LAL
Roy Hibbert C LAL
Kevin Martin SG MIN
Aaron Afflalo SG NYK
Eric Gordon SG NOR
Meyers Leonard PF POR
Robert Covington SFPF PHI
Aaron Gordon PF ORL
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist SF CHA
Otto Porter SF WAS
AL Farouq Aminu SF POR


These guys are your specialist targets, they deliver an elite helping in particular categories

Kyle Korver SGSF ATL ( 3’s 3% ft%)
JJ Redick SG LAC ( 3’s 3% ft%)
Danny Green SGSF SAS ( S B 3’s ft%)
DeAndre Jordan C LAC ( R B fg%)
Andre Drummond C DET ( R B fg%)
Michael Carter Williams PG MIL ( A S)
Elfrid Payton PG ORL ( A S)
Rajon Rondo PG SAC ( A S)
Tony Allen SGSF MEM ( S )
Ricky Rubio PG MIN ( A S )
Hassan Whiteside PFC MIA ( R B fg%)
Dwight Howard PFC HOU ( R B fg%)


Now as a little favourite section I will list what I like to call “Fangrenades”! Young players that are set to explode onto the scene or take that next step forward toward entrenching themselves as either studs or compliments. If you are in a keeper league and just outside of the top teams, it would be smart to try and land these guys to build for the future.

Nerlens Noel PFC PHI
Andrew Wiggins SGSF MIN
Karl Anthony Towns PFC MIN
Jabari Parker SF MIL
Giannis Antetokounmpo SF MIL
Gorgui Dieng PFC MIN
Nikola Mirotic PF CHI
Julius Randle PF LAL
Emmanuel Mudiay PG DEN
Stanley Johnson SF DET
Myles Turner PFC IND
DeAngelo Russell PG LAL
Jahlil Okafor PFC
Mario Hezonja SF ORL

There are a lot of players I could ramble about here but let’s just focus on those that are going to help without question. Think I’ve missed anyone? Let me know on Twitter.

Matt McLean @wwfantasyteam

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s