The word “bust” is generally a bit harsh for most of the big name players on this list since they still have fantasy value. That being said, we will simply define a “bust” as a player that will under-perform their average draft position so temper your expectations and rank them accordingly on your cheat sheet.
Bibby had nice numbers in his first full year in Atlanta averaging 14.9 points, 5.0 assists and 3.5 rebounds per game. The offseason signing of Jamal Crawford will likely hurt his chances of a repeat performance. Bibby will still be a No.2 fantasy guard in most leagues with double-digit scoring and a decent source of 3-pointers and steals, but you should drop him down a bit on your draft board because of the added depth in the Atlanta backcourt.
Parker is coming off a great season in which he posted career highs with 22 points and 6.9 assists per game. We expect Parker’s scoring numbers to decline this season on the Spurs revamped lineup which features a healthy Manu Ginobili and the newly acquired Richard Jefferson and Antonio McDyess. Parker may post another career-high in assists, but for a PG he has below average steals, 3-pointers, and free-throw percentage. Parker is still a solid second or third point guard in most fantasy leagues we’re just not ready to give him elite PG status.
After coming off the bench for a portion of last season, Hamilton now finds himself on the trading block and in a timeshare with Ben Gordon. Gordon is coming off a nice season with the Bulls where he averaged 20.7 ppg, 3.4 assists, and 3.5 rebounds, while Hamilton posted his lowest shooting percentage in four seasons at .447. Although we expect the Pistons’ to try and give them both significant floor time, until it is a bit more clear how the Pistons will use these two scorers you may want to avoid drafting Hamilton until the later rounds.
The days of KG being the king of the fantasy world are long gone. Don’t let his his big-name status sucker you into drafting him before young stars like Danny Granger, Brandon Roy, or Kevin Durant. Garnett is coming off knee surgery and has very capable backups with Glen Davis and newly acquired Rasheed Wallace so the Celtics will certainly continue to limit his minutes. Garnett is still worth a early-round pick in most leagues, but just temper your expectations.
Odom was a big disappointment for fantasy owners last year and there is a very low ceiling on his fantasy production again this season. Andrew Bynum is healthy, last season’s contract-year motivation gone, and the Lakers signed Ron Artest to add to their lineup that is already stacked with contributors. All of these are very unpromising signs that there any chance of a bounce-back year. Odom will again be nothing more than a role player so don’t overpay for him in your draft.
Artest had a solid season last year in Houston, averaging 17.1 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.3 assists. Artest joined the Lakers in a quest to win a championship, however it could have a negative impact on his overall statistical production playing alongside Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum. Artest will continue to put up useful numbers in most statistical categories and he does have guard eligibility, but fantasy owners should expect a drop in his scoring numbers.
Last season Murphy posted career highs in FG%, 3PTM 3PTA and 3PT%, rebounds, assists, and steals. We have some fears that Murphy may have peaked last season and because of this may be slightly overvalued in many drafts this year. Don’t get me wrong, he can be a double-double machine and will shoot great percentages, but the return of Mike Dunleavy and development of Roy Hibbert will cut into Murphy’s rebounding and scoring. Murphy will post solid numbers, we just caution you not to expect a repeat of last year if you plan on drafting him as early as the 2nd round.
Big Z has been a quality center for a long time, but at age 34, he is certainly not going to get any better at this point in his career. He will also lose some playing time as Cleveland traded for Shaquille O’Neal. Ilgauskas will still be effective in his limited minutes and a decent source of points, boards, blocks and the occasional 3-pointer, but we expect a slight decline in numbers across the board. He will still be worth a late-round reserve pick or a handcuff option for O’Neal owner in deeper leagues, but nothing more.
Wallace does have center eligibility and offers a unique combination of 3-pointers, boards, steals, and blocks from that position, but his fantasy value took a hit when he was traded to the Celtics. Wallace will be splitting time with Kevin Garnett, Kendrick Perkins, and Glen Davis. He should still get a decent amount of minutes but fantasy owners should not expect a resurgent season, so draft accordingly.
The Grizzlies drafted center Hasheem Thabeet with the No. 2 overall pick. We often see a tendency for fantasy owners to draft over-hyped rookies way too early. The Grizzlies have Zach Randolph and Marc Gasol ahead of him in the front court and although the 7-foot-3 Thabeet may be an impressive shot-blocker, it may be a while before he refines his offensive game. If you are looking for a late-round shot-blocking specialist he’s your guy, just don’t expect much more.