It’s impossible to have fantasy basketball sleepers surging teams to the championship without fantasy basketball busts to balance them out. The former is sweet and the latter is sour, but they exist in harmony when combined. Anyone who plays fantasy basketball on a consistent basis knows the hard reality of getting excited to pick a player who ultimately falls short of their goals. It’s a tough pill to swallow, and one that’s avoidable if you play your cards right.
Entering the 2022-23 NBA season, it’s safe to say that the talent pool is deeper than ever. Impact players will spend the year on waivers in many standard 10-team leagues due to the sheer volume of players available. By the time the year ends, it doesn’t matter if you began with the first, fifth, or 10th pick on draft day so long as you play your cards right, look for telltale signs of regression and keep up with shifting tides around the league.
What constitutes fantasy basketball busts and how do I avoid them?
Some people might consider a player who gets injured to be a bust, and while that injury might bust your team, it’s not a true bust unless the player was truly underperforming. For example, Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard is historically one of the 10-to-15 best players in fantasy basketball, but he was a complete loss for those who drafted him a year ago. His on-court performance was hampered from day one by the injury that ultimately cost him the season.
Some players are much better in theory than they are in practice. Whether they’re a victim of circumstance due to coaching, positional battles, or simply regressing as a player, it can happen to anyone at any time. To take things a step forward, some players aren’t necessarily busts for their performance, but for the spot where they’re selected. The people who drafted Lillard easily could’ve picked a top performer in his place, effectively seeping into the realm of fantasy basketball busts.
The four players under the microscope today are excellent basketball players, but due to the circumstances through which they’re playing, aren’t worth spending your coveted draft pick.
Please note that this is specifically catered to a standard points league. Some players are more valuable than others in category leagues, or leagues with custom scoring settings. Don’t forget to make sure you know your league’s scoring settings before preparing for the draft.