Thursday, October 29, 2015

I Love When White People Describe Other Races

Today's post is just to give a quick shoutout to one of my favorite things in this world. It's when white people are describing someone from another race. Too often, they try to be too progressive and not see skin color in their description of a person. 

I was working on a college campus, and they were trying to describe this black guy named Greg, but they refused to say black guy. It was one of the most painfully hilarious conversations I have ever overheard, as it went something like this.

Guy 1: Oh, you know Greg. He's about our age, in good shape, real friendly.
Guy 2: I don't think I know him.
Guy 1: Oh yeah you do. Nice guy, I know you'd know him if you saw him.

There are like three black guys who work on campus, but guy number one just refused to state the obvious and state his race. As a white male, I'm not allowed to make any proclamations on what is and isn't appropriate when it comes to race (or any other issue for that matter), but I will go as far as saying that I'm pretty sure it's okay to describe someone using their race...

...but I am 100% sure that it is hilarious if you choose not to state the obvious.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Reviewing My Fantasy Basketball Draft - Part 3

My annual fantasy basketball draft was held this past Tuesday, and as opposed to a free-for-all with everyone having a chance to take home a title, this is more a ceremony, almost a coronation, if you will, as I have yet again acquired a ton of basketball assets to put myself in prime position to take home another fantasy basketball championship. Since we can trade between leagues, I had an extra first and fourth round pick as well as a couple prime keepers. But, just for fun, we'll take a look at the draft, and see who has the best chance of coming in second place this year. You can find part one here and part two here. Today, we conclude the series with the final rounds and summary.

121 Mo Williams, Cle PG The Kid From Thunder Struck
122 Myles Turner, Ind PF   The Outsiders
123 Harrison Barnes, GS SF Flint Tropics
124 Josh Smith, LAC SF oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
125 Avery Bradley, Bos SG Team Autoprick
126 Jared Sullinger, Bos PF For the love of the game
127 Noah Vonleh, Por PF Wilson Chandler Bing
128 Alec Burks, Uta SG Kissing Cousins
129 Louis Williams, LAL PG Butt Stuff
130 Bojan Bogdanovic, Bkn SG Duncan's Donuts
131 Marcus Smart, Bos PG Unleash the Dragic
132 Darren Collison, Sac PG Wennington Baseline
Best Pick: Louis Williams
I love Lou Williams. Now, full disclosure here: Lou and I did not get off to a good start. Somewhere between 5-7 years ago, I was playing an NBA video game against my brother, and he was the 76ers. I don’t even remember who I was at this point, but I will never forget how Lou Williams torched me, and I thought to myself, “Who the fuck is Lou Williams?” It turns out Lou Williams is a super fun basketball player who will be one of the top scoring bench players in the league. I’ll be shocked if he doesn’t finish in the top-75 of ESPN’s Player Rater at the end of the year.

Worst Pick: Josh Smith
Blake Griffin and Josh Smith cannot play Center. Blake Griffin and Josh Smith should not play Small Forward. That means you really don’t want those guys out on the court at the same time. In this scenario, I am going to go out on a limb and say Blake Griffin gets the edge in minutes over Josh Smith. So you’ve got Josh Smith in limited minutes where he’s only occasionally good. That does not sound like a recipe for success.

My Pick: Myles Turner
Toot toot! That’s the sound of the Myles Turner hype train coming through. I may not be the conductor, but I do have a first class seat. All he’s got to do is beat out Jordan Hill for minutes, and he’ll be able to show what he can do. Jordan Hill is the definition of a guy you want beaten out for minutes. Also, there’s a dirty little secret that Myles Turner was about as good as Okafor and Towns, but he was coached by Rick Barnes who will always get the least out of the most talent. In the words of Mojo Rawley, “I don’t get hyped; I stay hyped.”

133 Justise Winslow, Mia SG Wennington Baseline
134 Ersan Ilyasova, Det PF Unleash the Dragic
135 Raul Neto, Uta PG Duncan's Donuts
136 Brandon Jennings*, Det PG Butt Stuff
137 Jerian Grant, NY PG Kissing Cousins
138 Doug McDermott, Chi SF Wilson Chandler Bing
139 Bismack Biyombo, Tor C For the love of the game
140 Evan Turner, Bos SG Team Autoprick
141 Luol Deng, Mia SF oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
142 Al-Farouq Aminu, Por SF Butt Stuff
143 Mario Hezonja, Orl SF   The Outsiders
144 Zaza Pachulia, Dal C The Kid From Thunder Struck
Best Pick: Brandon Jennings
I thought about going Jennings with my pick before this, but if the Pistons were willing to trade for and pay Reggie Jackson, clearly, they aren’t huge Brandon Jennings fans. Still, he should get a decent amount of playing time alongside Jackson that he makes for a good addition when he gets back to 100%.

Worst Pick: Bismack Biyombo
Seriously? People are still drafting Bismack Biyombo? I know he has a fun name, but he can’t really play basketball. That’s an issue when you are competing in a fantasy basketball league. But it is the 12th round of a fantasy basketball league, why am I still writing this?

My Pick: Mario Hezonja
Oh, yeah, to get to this guy. For my last pick, I took my Croatian brother, Mario Hezonja. I could wax poetically about how awesome he is going to be, but I’ll let fellow Croatian, Zach Lowe, take the honors:

“You think he cares that he’s battling for minutes under coach Vic Mackey, who tolerates no such nonsense from uppity international rookies? Hell no. He drilled a run-up-the-score 3 during the closing seconds of a Eurobasket blowout, and dapped up the opposing coach. The best part? The coach dapped him back! He once said he has never respected any opponent. When a reporter suggested he watch Lionel Messi in person, Hezonja responded that Messi should come watch him.”

On top of all of that, I happened to be there in person for his bounce pass alley oop to Aaron Gordon. So, yeah, I’m a little excited about Mario Hezonja. So excited I’ll even review the last round despite me not having a selection in it.

145 Jordan Hill, Ind PF The Kid From Thunder Struck
146 Anthony Morrow, OKC SG oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
147 Jeff Green, Mem SF oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
148 Willie Cauley-Stein, Sac C oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
149 Kevin Martin, Min SG Team Autoprick
150 Ed Davis, Por PF Duncan's Donuts
151 Aaron Gordon, Orl PF Wilson Chandler Bing
152 Joe Johnson, Bkn SG Kissing Cousins
153 Jamal Crawford, LAC SG Butt Stuff
154 Frank Kaminsky III, Cha C Duncan's Donuts
155 David West, SA PF Unleash the Dragic
156 Gerald Henderson*, Por SG Wennington Baseline
Best Pick: Jamal Crawford
Doesn’t he win Sixth Man of the Year award like every year? That’s got to translate into decent fantasy stats. I mean, he’ll score and not much else, but that’s a pretty nice addition in the final round of the draft, so good for Jamal Crawford on being selected.

Worst Pick: Anthony Morrow
He can shoot threes pretty good. He does nothing else. He probably won’t see the ball too often. I’m trying to build up some outrage towards this pick, but it’s the final round, so it really doesn’t matter. Let’s get to the predictions.

So who's going to win this league? Well, me, obviously. But let's see who will take second place to my team of pure dominance. I'll add some insight into each team and rank accordingly. With my simple method of adding a point for bests, keepers (except Julius Randle, who, let's be honest, was no great value), and strong trades, while subtracting points for worsts, the standings should look something like this.

1. The Outsiders -  
It's pretty clear that this was a perfect draft. I got the guys who were 1-2 last year in fantasy value with the second and fourth picks. I'm going to dominate 3 pointers, free throw percentage, assists, and steals, while competing in field goal percentage. Oh, and points? Yeah, with Curry, Harden, Bosh, Thomas, and George, yeah, I don't see many people outscoring me. I guess if a team has a great week, they'll only lose 5-3. That's BEST case scenario for my opponents.

2. Wennington Baseline 4-1
Bill Wennington is known for his tremendous fundamentals, and this team is no different. He has a lot of guys that do many things well like Draymond Green and Nerlens Noel, but I question the depth of his team as there are a lot of very replaceable pieces.

3. The Kid From Thunderstruck 2-0
The Kid From Thunderstruck was a flash in the pan, but I think this team has staying power. It's loaded with athletes like Wiggins, Drummond, and obviously, Anthony Davis, and he's got some solid late pick point guards with Jrue Holiday and Deron Williams that could far exceed their draft status. Definitely a threat for the silver medal.

4. Kissing Cousins 2-0
Now you might be thinking that this guy got the team name Kissing Cousins from drafting DeMarcus Cousins, but I can assure you that this is not just a single year team name, this is a lifestyle. He took Derrick Rose, who I love, but who I would not trust to stay healthy in a ping pong match.

5. For the Love of the Game 4-3
Like me, they had an extra first round pick and a couple keepers, but I'm not concerned. Having Wall and Westbrook is a nice start, but his roster is fairly uninspired outside of that. That still just makes him a poor man's version of my team which probably makes him the favorite for second place, but I go by the numbers, and the numbers are unimpressed with his drafting acumen. 

6. Butt Stuff 3-2
Butt Stuff had an absolutely painful performance through most of this draft. But it seems like after getting worked through the draft for a while, it finally seemed like he could loosen up and enjoy the experience. It took a while for him to lube up his drafting prowess, but he got the bests in the last three rounds. So congratulations to him on being a willful receiver (of new players) and getting comfortable with a new and challenging experience.

7. Flint Tropics 1-0
Honestly, had I had the chance to name this team, I would have called them Jail Bait, because after the fourth round, he took one guy with more than three years of experience in the NBA. He likes 'em young, but needs to realize that, "She said she was 18" is no defense in this league.

8. Wilson Chandler Bing 1-1
That Serge Ibaka pick in the first round really put him behind everybody else, but I liked a lot of what he did outside of that. Since I live in Florida and don't like the Heat, I am putting my secondary support behind the Magic, so I probably like Aaron Gordon more than most. There's a lot that is above average but little that stands out.

9. Unleash the Dragic 1-1
Outside of that Melo pick, there is just nothing that excites me about this team. He's depending on the health of Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard, which doesn't seem like a great long-term plan for success.

10. Duncan's Donuts 0-0
This team managed to not have a single best or worst which is kind of amazing. The guy he has that I like more than most is D'Angelo Russell. Mudiay's getting a lot more publicity since he tore up the Summer League, but I'd rather look at what Russell did during his entire season at Ohio State than a couple weeks of exhibition games. 

11. Team Autoprick 1-2
This garbage person didn't even show up for the draft. He doesn't deserve to be ranked. Hell, he barely deserves to live (I take fantasy sports VERY seriously).

12. oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!! 1-3
This roster actually made me laugh out loud, because it was like he intentionally took the worst shooters in the league. If you described the weakness of every player on his roster (not counting Anthony Morrow), their biggest weakness would all be shooting. It's truly amazing how bad this team shoots, so hopefully that's not important in basketball.

But let's be real here. The title is mine to lose. None of these other teams matter.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Reviewing My Fantasy Basketball Draft - Part 2

My annual fantasy basketball draft was held this past Tuesday, and as opposed to a free-for-all with everyone having a chance to take home a title, this is more a ceremony, almost a coronation, if you will, as I have yet again acquired a ton of basketball assets to put myself in prime position to take home another fantasy basketball championship. Since we can trade between leagues, I had an extra first and fourth round pick as well as a couple prime keepers. But, just for fun, we'll take a look at the draft, and see who has the best chance of coming in second place this year. I knocked out the first five rounds last week, so today, let's tackle rounds 6-10, with the finale coming tomorrow.

61 DeMar DeRozan, Tor SG Wennington Baseline
62 Kobe Bryant, LAL SG Unleash the Dragic
63 C.J. McCollum, Por PG Duncan's Donuts
64 J.J. Redick, LAC SG Butt Stuff
65 Kyle Korver, Atl SG Kissing Cousins
66 George Hill, Ind PG Wilson Chandler Bing
67 Dirk Nowitzki, Dal PF For the love of the game
68 Jarrett Jack, Bkn PG Team Autoprick
69 Gorgui Dieng, Min C oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
70 Nikola Mirotic, Chi PF Flint Tropics
71 Danilo Gallinari, Den SF   The Outsiders
72 Ricky Rubio, Min PG The Kid From Thunder Struck
Best Pick: Dirk Nowitzki
I was pretty shocked how far Dirk fell in the draft. It’s not like he was rated super high, but it’s still Dirk Nowitzki, and he didn’t fall off that much last season. Obviously, with anyone his age, health is an issue, but if he can stay relatively healthy, it would be pretty shocking if he wasn’t a top-50 player this season.

Worst Pick: JJ Redick
I don’t know how you take Redick when Korver is still on the board. Redick has struggled with injuries, and with the Clippers increased depth, he is likely to see less minutes and shots this season. 

My Pick: Danilo Gallinari
My goal for this round was to add some shooting, and Gallinari fills that role. He was solid last year, but I think he takes a big step forward this season since he will be another year removed from his injury. The second year is the time to strike on injured players, so I really think Gallinari can be a big part of the Nuggets offense this year and have my team joining the Mile High Club. Wait, I think I just implied that my fantasy basketball team is going to have a giant orgy in an airplane. I just meant that they’ll be good; the orgy was not intended.

73 Dwyane Wade, Mia SG The Kid From Thunder Struck
74 Isaiah Thomas, Bos PG   The Outsiders
75 Zach Randolph, Mem PF Flint Tropics
76 Emmanuel Mudiay, Den PG oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
77 Ryan Anderson, Nor PF Team Autoprick
78 Markieff Morris, Pho PF For the love of the game
79 Jimmy Butler, Chi SG Wilson Chandler Bing
80 Wesley Matthews, Dal SG Kissing Cousins
81 David Lee, Bos PF Butt Stuff
82 Thaddeus Young, Bkn SF Duncan's Donuts
83 Jordan Clarkson, LAL PG Unleash the Dragic
84 Trevor Ariza, Hou SF Wennington Baseline
Keepers: Isaiah Thomas and Jimmy Butler

Best Pick: Wesley Matthews
I came very close to selecting Matthews with the Gallinari pick, but he is coming off of a serious injury. Still, Wes Matthews is a guy that continues to be doubted and continues to do awesome things on a basketball court. He’ll likely start off slow, but by midway through the season, I think you’ll see the vintage Wes Matthews, just in a Mavericks jersey instead of the Blazers.

Worst Pick: David Lee
Are we sure David Lee is still good at basketball? The Celtics basically took him to swap out a completely worthless player (Sorry, Gerald Wallace). Is he beating out Olynyk and Sullinger for playing time? I don’t know what David Lee is, but I know it’s not too impressive, because he barely played last year, and his team did just fine without him. I’m not saying he’s a terrible player now, but I’m also not willing to go on the record to say he’s a good one.

My Pick: Isaiah Thomas
Isaiah Thomas was one of my keepers for this year, and I feel very good about him. He could have gone as high as the fourth round, so to get him in the seventh is a very nice value play for me. Isaiah Thomas will continue to produce good numbers, because he’s Boston’s best scoring option, so they are going to need him if they ever want to put up more than 75 points. It’s also always nice to get an NBA player who is only as tall as me, so here’s one to the little guys.

85 Jahlil Okafor, Phi C Wennington Baseline
86 Robin Lopez, NY C Unleash the Dragic
87 D'Angelo Russell, LAL PG Duncan's Donuts
88 Jabari Parker, Mil SF Flint Tropics
89 Enes Kanter, OKC C Kissing Cousins
90 Marcin Gortat, Wsh C Wilson Chandler Bing
91 J.R. Smith, Cle SG For the love of the game
92 Arron Afflalo, NY SG Team Autoprick
93 Elfrid Payton, Orl PG oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
94 Julius Randle, LAL PF Flint Tropics
95 Paul George, Ind SF   The Outsiders
96 Jrue Holiday, Nor PG The Kid From Thunder Struck
Keepers: Julius Randle and Paul George

Best Pick: Jahlil Okafor
I have to say, this is a really strong round of guys that I like. I think D’Angelo Russell is getting underestimated because of a poor Summer League, but I’m also not sure how the Lakers pieces are going to fit together. I also like Jabari coming back, but I don’t know how the minutes are going to play out since they have Middleton and Giannis with a bunch of bigs. I also love Jrue Holiday, always and forever, because if he can stay healthy, even with limiting his minutes some, dude is one of the ten best point guards in the league. Still, I’ll go with Okafor, because somebody has to score for the 76ers, and I think it will likely be him. He’ll rebound well enough, but he’s not going to be great with defensive categories. Still, he has a good chance of outperforming his draft position and being a keeper for the following season.

Worst Pick: J.R. Smith
Do you want to be the guy who buys in on J.R. Smith? I don’t want to be that guy. You shouldn’t want to be that guy either. Don’t be that guy.

My Pick: Paul George
I took him in the tenth round last year strictly for this purpose. The Pacers are looking to run more this season which should mean an even greater chance for Paul George to succeed. Obviously, he had a very serious injury, but considering he made it back late last year, I don’t think it will slow him down too much this year. Obviously, George was great before the injury, but I think a lot of people are forgetting how many people were expecting him to take another step forward to join the elite of the elite before his injury. Worst case scenario, he’s great, best case scenario, he’s an absolute fantasy monster.

97 Terrence Jones, Hou PF The Kid From Thunder Struck
98 Joakim Noah, Chi C   The Outsiders
99 Otto Porter Jr., Wsh SF Flint Tropics
100 Michael Carter-Williams, Mil PG oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
101 Jeremy Lin, Cha PG Team Autoprick
102 DeMarre Carroll, Tor SF For the love of the game
103 Wilson Chandler, Den SF Wilson Chandler Bing
104 Stanley Johnson, Det SF Kissing Cousins
105 Eric Gordon, Nor SG Butt Stuff
106 Trey Burke, Uta PG Duncan's Donuts
107 Rajon Rondo, Sac PG Unleash the Dragic
108 Draymond Green, GS SF Wennington Baseline
Keepers: DeMarre Carroll and Draymond Green

Best Pick: Michael Carter-Williams
I’m not a huge MCW fan, but it’s gotten to the point where people are focusing way too much on what he doesn’t do than appreciating what he does do. He’s an absolute beast defensively, and he can dish out assists. He isn’t a great shooter; that sucks, but he’s still a really good player in the right system. The Bucks knew what they were getting when they traded for him, so he is going to get a chance to do what he does best.

Worst Pick: Jeremy Lin
Jeremy Lin is fine. But he is what he is, and that’s a backup point guard. He’s nothing special, but he did play really special for a few weeks. If he’s your backup point guard, you should feel good. If you’re drafting him in fantasy, uuuuuuh, I wouldn’t feel too good about that.

My Pick: Joakim Noah
I’d like to believe this is an upside pick, but it may be a homer pick. I love Joakim. Every Bulls fan loves Joakim. Did you know that two years ago he was an MVP Candidate and actually won Defensive Player of the Year? It’s true. You can look it up and everything. He was never healthy last year, and I think increased health along with moderate minutes considering the depth the Bulls have in the frontcourt, I think Joakim will bounce back. He can fill it up in all categories, and that is ideal for what I need out of my big men.

109 Roy Hibbert, LAL C Wennington Baseline
110 Kristaps Porzingis, NY PF Unleash the Dragic
111 Jusuf Nurkic*, Den C Duncan's Donuts
112 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Det SG Butt Stuff
113 Robert Covington, Phi PF Kissing Cousins
114 Tyson Chandler, Pho C Wilson Chandler Bing
115 Danny Green, SA SG For the love of the game
116 P.J. Tucker, Pho SG Team Autoprick
117 Tony Parker, SA PG oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
118 Zach LaVine, Min PG Flint Tropics
119 Tristan Thompson, Cle PF oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
120 Deron Williams, Dal PG The Kid From Thunder Struck
Keeper: Danny Green

Best Pick: Deron Williams
Typing that makes me feel stupid. It may actually legally make me a stupid person, but I’m still not ready to totally give up on Deron Williams. Everybody wants to count out the Mavericks this year, but if they can figure out a Center, there’s no reason they can’t compete for a playoff spot with their roster. Deron Williams was a high school wrestler, and I will always stick by wrestlers, so great pick here (likely not a great pick, but if things work out, a solid pick).

Worst Pick: P.J. Tucker
I think Tucker is a solid player, but I think he is going to be less involved this season as TJ Warren takes a step forward as a huge asset for the Suns.

My Pick: No Pick
Had to give up a 10th rounder in order to get that extra fourth. Totally worth it, though.

And that wraps up part two. Stay tuned tomorrow for the grand finale.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Reviewing My Fantasy Basketball Draft - Part 1

My annual fantasy basketball draft was held this past Tuesday, and as opposed to a free-for-all with everyone having a chance to take home a title, this is more a ceremony, almost a coronation, if you will, as I have yet again acquired a ton of basketball assets to put myself in prime position to take home another fantasy basketball championship. Since we can trade between leagues, I had an extra first and fourth round pick as well as a couple prime keepers. But, just for fun, we'll take a look at the draft, and see who has the best chance of coming in second place this year. Today will be rounds 1-5, with the rest coming next week.

1             Anthony Davis, Nor PF     The Kid From Thunder Struck
2             Stephen Curry, GS PG       The Outsiders
3             LeBron James, Cle SF       Flint Tropics
4             James Harden, Hou SG    The Outsiders
5             Kevin Durant, OKC SF       Team Autoprick
6             Russell Westbrook, OKC PG          For the love of the game
7             Serge Ibaka, OKC PF         Wilson Chandler Bing
8             DeMarcus Cousins, Sac C               Kissing Cousins
9             Chris Paul, LAC PG            Butt Stuff
10           John Wall, Wsh PG           For the love of the game
11           Blake Griffin, LAC PF        Unleash the Dragic
12           Damian Lillard, Por PG     Wennington Baseline
Best Pick: Damian Lillard
Lillard was a top-10 fantasy player last year, and now LaMarcus Aldridge is gone, so I really can’t see him taking a step backwards. I would have strongly considered him as high as pick six, as I have Westbrook, Cousins, Wall, and him all rated very close together. He won’t supply much on the defensive side of the ball, but his offense will more than make up for it, and it really wouldn’t shock me if he took a leap into that Steph Curry/James Harden fantasy guard monster group.

Worst Pick: Serge Ibaka
What? For a second, I thought the ESPN Fantasy Draft room was having a glitch and forcing everyone to take Oklahoma City Thunder players. I was fully expecting Enes Kanter to go #8 off the board, but alas, it was just an…interesting pick. I am lower than most on Serge as he didn’t step up last year with Durant out, and his numbers are going in the wrong direction. As a guy who depends on his athleticism more than most, I don’t really see those numbers rebounding, as he’s only going to get less springy with age.

My Picks: Stephen Curry and James Harden
Steph Curry was a no brainer with the #2 pick. He had ankle issues earlier in his career, but he’s shown he can stay healthy, so I’m not too concerned about the injury bug popping up again. He was the best fantasy player last year, and I think there is a good chance he has a repeat performance.

James Harden was the pick that I struggled with. Before the draft, I knew I wanted either Harden or Durant with this pick and figured one of them would be off the board at #3. Since LeBron went at 3, I had to think about everything that I have read about Harden and Durant. Durant has the higher ceiling, but that foot injury terrified me. James Harden started hanging out with a Kardashian, and his minutes may go down now that Houston has an improved bench. But I also heard that Harden is pissed about not winning the MVP last year and has something to prove. I went with the safer choice in Harden as even if he takes a step back, he’s probably a top-8 fantasy performer and considering the assets that I acquired for this draft, the safe choice was the right choice for me.

13           Klay Thompson, GS SG     Wennington Baseline
14           Carmelo Anthony, NY SF Unleash the Dragic
15           Kawhi Leonard, SA SF      Duncan's Donuts
16           LaMarcus Aldridge, SA PF              Butt Stuff
17           Paul Millsap, Atl PF           Kissing Cousins
18           Eric Bledsoe, Pho PG        Wilson Chandler Bing
19           Rudy Gobert, Uta C          For the love of the game
20           Nikola Vucevic, Orl C       Team Autoprick
21           Victor Oladipo, Orl SG     oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
22           Gordon Hayward, Uta SG              Flint Tropics
23           Chris Bosh, Mia C             The Outsiders
24           Andre Drummond, Det C The Kid From Thunder Struck
Best Pick: Carmelo Anthony
I am a sucker for Carmelo. The dude is just so naturally gifted at basketball. He’s just so smooth and effortless out there. If he’s healthy, I don’t see how he’s not a top-10 guy, and really, who else is putting up numbers on the Knicks? The Knicks added enough talent to help facilitate Melo without really making a dent in his numbers.

Worst Pick: Rudy Gobert
As you can tell from my best and worst picks, I am a points whore, so I’m not huge on the defensive specialists that either barely add or hurt your offensive categories. Also, Gobert has a fairly limited sample size of success, so I’m not fully ready to buy in on the guy in the second round.

My Pick: Chris Bosh
Chris Bosh is super good at basketball. Had he stayed healthy, he would have been a top-15 guy. The blood clots are not a long-term issue, so I don’t see why he can’t pick up where he left off last year. Miami does have some more weapons this year, so there could be a slight dropoff, but my team is focused on winning the small ball categories, and Bosh is a guy that fits in perfectly with my fantasy philosophy.

25           Rudy Gay, Sac SF               The Kid From Thunder Struck
26           Al Horford, Atl C               The Outsiders
27           Kevin Love, Cle PF            Flint Tropics
28           Hassan Whiteside, Mia PF             oladipOOOOYEA YOURHOT!!!!!!
29           Marc Gasol, Mem C         Team Autoprick
30           Chandler Parsons, Dal SF For the love of the game
31           Jeff Teague, Atl PG           Wilson Chandler Bing
32           Kyle Lowry, Tor PG           Kissing Cousins
33           Pau Gasol, Chi PF              Butt Stuff
34           Brook Lopez, Bkn C          Duncan's Donuts
35           Goran Dragic, Mia PG      Unleash the Dragic
36           Nerlens Noel, Phi C          Wennington Baseline
Keeper: Nerlens Noel

Best Pick: Kyle Lowry
I came very close to drafting Kyle Lowry. He has gotten in really good shape, which I know is bogus a lot of the time, but dude looks like he lost 20 pounds of fat off of his body. With a slimmer body, there is a better likelihood of him holding up throughout the entire season, which has really been his only question mark these past few years. He’s a menace on defense, and he sets the table on offense. I had him rated much higher than the other point guards taken in this round.

Worst Pick: Hassan Whiteside
I promise that I will not only pick big dudes who block shots on my list of worst picks, but I definitely have a type I don’t like, and it seems to be those guys. But honestly, if Whiteside does what he does, then this is a totally fine pick. The problem is that the guy has had troubles off the court, and even when he was successful last year, he still made poor decisions that got him in trouble. There’s a little upside with Whiteside, but there is tremendous downside with him, and that’s why I would have stayed away this early in the draft.

My Pick: Al Horford
I love Al Horford. This is the third straight year me and Al are going to pair together to dominate a fantasy basketball league. The first year he was doing great until he got injured for the year. The second year he did exactly what he was supposed to do and was great all year long. There is very little difference between Horford and Millsap, but Horford was rated criminally low by ESPN. In Yahoo, he was rated as the 13th best player. I think that’s a little high, but I will gladly take him twice as late as that, as I do think he will be a top-20 player.

37           Reggie Jackson, Det PG   Wennington Baseline
38           Kenneth Faried, Den PF   Unleash the Dragic
39           Kyrie Irving*, Cle PG         Duncan's Donuts
40           DeAndre Jordan, LAC C   Butt Stuff
41           Derrick Favors, Uta PF     Kissing Cousins
42           Nicolas Batum, Cha SF    Wilson Chandler Bing
43           Monta Ellis, Ind SG           For the love of the game
44           Jonas Valanciunas, Tor C               Team Autoprick
45           Brandon Knight, Pho PG                 The Outsiders
46           Karl-Anthony Towns, Min C           Flint Tropics
47           Bradley Beal, Wsh SG      The Outsiders
48           Al Jefferson, Cha C           The Kid From Thunder Struck
Best Pick: Jonas Valanciunas
Valanciunas was the 40th ranked player last year, and he’s a young Center who has gotten better every year. I think he continues to get better and could become a top-30 guy. It is stupid that this is my favorite pick, since this guy didn’t even show up, and he just got an autopick of Jonas when he probably would have taken somebody stupid.

Worst Pick: Reggie Jackson
I think Reggie Jackson is worthy of this pick to start the season, but Brandon Jennings is going to be coming back, and I don’t know what that means for Reggie Jackson. I think Jackson remains the starter, but I have to think he’ll be giving some of the ball handling responsibilities to Jennings by the end of the year which could diminish him for the playoffs.

My Picks: Brandon Knight and Bradley Beal
Brandon Knight is my guy for this year’s draft. That guy that I am way obsessed with and was going to throw a hissy fit if he didn’t end up on my team. There are a few things that really stand out for me with Knight. The Suns acquired him and got rid of Isaiah Thomas and Goran Dragic, so that means that they believe that Knight will not only fit in their system but flourish. Next, all Suns guards put up big time fantasy numbers, so that is pretty sweet. Finally, point guards take some time. It’s rare for a guy to set the world on fire right away. His teammate, Eric Bledsoe, is a great example. So is former Sun, Goran Dragic. So is John Wall, and that last name is the one that has me excited. Knight is super talented, and although he’s not John Wall, I could see him making a big step forward and getting into the conversation along with some of the top guards in the league. I love me some Brandon Knight.

Bradley Beal is a guy who always ends up on my team, always fails me because of injuries, and yet I can’t quit him. I’m probably putting too much stock in his playoff run last year, but he has that sort of elite talent, and if he’s healthy, then he should be able to show that. Washington needs scorers, and Beal is the type of guy that can put up 20 a game while also helping out in a lot of other categories. Come on Brad Beal, this is the year.

49           Andrew Wiggins, Min SG The Kid From Thunder Struck
50           Mike Conley, Mem PG     The Outsiders
51           Ty Lawson, Hou PG          Flint Tropics
52           Giannis Antetokounmpo*, Mil SF Flint Tropics
53           Khris Middleton, Mil SF    Team Autoprick
54           Tobias Harris, Orl PF        For the love of the game
55           Tyreke Evans*, Nor SF     Wilson Chandler Bing
56           Derrick Rose, Chi PG        Kissing Cousins
57           Kemba Walker, Cha PG   Butt Stuff
58           Tim Duncan, SA PF            Duncan's Donuts
59           Dwight Howard*, Hou C Unleash the Dragic
60           Greg Monroe, Mil PF       Wennington Baseline
Keeper: Giannis Antetokounmpo

Best Pick: Andrew Wiggins
If I didn’t have a strong obsession with Bradley Beal, Wiggins would have been a really nice pick for my team. But he’s a nice pick for any team. He was good last year and showed glimpses of the potential to be great. The big question with him is scoring, but he’s a freak of an athlete, so everything else will get better and better these next few years.

Worst Pick: Dwight Howard
Surprisingly, this was the toughest round I had in finding a worst pick. It’s at the level where you’re not super excited about guys, but they all seem pretty good, and I could imagine any of these guys giving top-40 production. I probably should have gone with Derrick Rose, but I can’t do that to D-Rose, so I’ll go with another guy with injury issues and say that Dwight is probably not going to get a ton of minutes this year as they try to preserve him for the playoffs and take advantage of their bench depth. Also, even when healthy, Dwight is trending downwards, and I don’t see that reversing.

My Pick: Mike Conley
I have never had Mike Conley, but I’m excited to give it a try. I was a huge fan of his back in his Ohio State days, and he is one of the better examples of my Brandon Knight theory where point guards take a while to mature into great basketball players. I do think that Ty Lawson has a higher upside, but Mike Conley made sense in that he provides very little downside and provide in the categories where I need him to excel.

That's all for today. We'll hit up Rounds 6-10 on Monday before finishing up the final rounds and overall predictions on Tuesday.