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Go BIG or Go Home - Jake Magnusson

If sporting a bronze or silver trophy makes you happy there’s nothing wrong with that but, if you want to string together a few championships you need to start going the extra mile. Nothing wrong with having a little fun with your buddies but, why waste your time for three months playing with the hand the draft dealt you, when you could be a nerd for a few days a year and give make an actual run.

Since you mean business you might as well treat it like one. The three P’s… preparation, planning, and players. This is your chance right now to create a Trade Debate Fantasy Basketball folder and add a few memos including this article. Make next year’s draft day party rock by peeking your file a few days before. Next Year’s draft should be epic since this year’s shortened season produced a new crop of ballers that will level the competition around your league.

The evolution of the wingman has produced a number of premier scorers that have changed the game by exploiting teams that can’t defend well and who cannot score enough points. The impact of the shot blocker has owners clamoring for the next big man to provide solid numbers that reward them every week by locking up the block category. Since there is a shortage of these giants an opportunity awaits in next year’s draft to break into this cache of rare point totals. Having that extra advantage week in and out allows your squad to win when they don’t perform. Looking at the components of those lineups that are consistently edging out wins, it seems a particular DNA is being developed as the season emerges. Just like the evolution of the big three roster in the NBA next year’s draft, should you choose to go big, it should go a little something like this.

Round 1- Premier Superstar
Round 2- 2nd Best Superstar still available
Round 3- No.1 Shot Blocker/Rebounder (Preferably on playoff team)
Round 4- No.2 Shot Blocker/Rebounder; Due to their being very few premier players
Round 5, 6, &7- Best Guards Available
Round 8- Prospect PF, C; Interchangeable due to Early Injury
Round 9- Touted Rookie

Going big early is like the first two times around the monopoly board. If you’re able to pick up key pieces that generate the most points across all categories you win the game. The reason is a) Consistency with the Superstars will carry you at the top all season. Recently the wingman scorer has been branded better to build a team around then the previous power forward. The athleticism of the pure scorers has been pushing the points per game higher than ever.  With that said their second attribute and most underrated I might add is the superstar’s durability. Without the abuse of banging around down low it’s far less likely they will be out at some point. Russell Westbrook, Deron Williams, and Monta Ellis should go much earlier in the 2013 draft. B) Shot Blocker/Rebounder is the difference maker between you and the rest of the league with the NBA having a great shortage in these 8 few elite. My god the most owned person in the NBA should be Serge Ibaka as every week he decimates this category along with Kevin Love who outperformed the giant expectations that he already was living up to. Guys like Marc Gasol, Love, Howard, and Ibaka are far fewer than the number of great guards and therefor far more valuable. And C) As I stated earlier categorically good guard play keeps you in matchups as Fantasy Points favor having strength at guard. If there is a sidebar or caveat it would be that saving room in your lineup for the next Jeremy Lin or Marshon Brooks and keep a close eye on past conference leading teams as they tend to be a very deep reservoir of talent as such in the case of the Mavericks, Clips, and Sixers where you can most likely find value in their rosters during in a pinch. Rodrigue Baeubois, Mo Williams and Lou Williams proved to be worth their weight in gold for many clubs this year. Next year no one will be discounting these guys for a late add.

Drafting this way next season will keep you competitive in almost any league and against almost any opponent. The association is back with a vengeance and with it comes a renewed Fantasy League full of possibility. Unlike past draft days the 2013 draft should be exciting and interesting. Getting a good read on the top crop right down to the last weeks of this season may prove worthwhile to see who’s a pretender and who’s a contender for your team.