Welcome to rookie roundup, a column where each week I’ll be taking a look at a few rookies (which will vary by week) and monitoring their progress to see who’s stock is up, down, checking to see who should be in line for some more PT, etc. In the pre-season, since there are really no stocks to monitor, I’ve decided to take a look at four rookies that I feel can contribute in your fantasy leagues this year. I will be doing one a week until the season starts. As such, the only logical place to start with any rookie list for this season is with Anthony Davis.
I’m very high on Davis, as I feel he has superstar written all over him. For the 2012 season, I should probably temper my expectations, but if you’re in a keeper or dynasty league, Davis is someone you definitely want on your squad. I play in a dynasty league which is currently conducting an offline slow draft. Anthony Davis went 17th overall. 17th! He was drafted ahead of players such as LaMarcus Aldridge, Marc Gasol, etc. That should speak volumes to what people think about him.
As for the 2012-13 season, we shouldn’t expect to much on the offensive end out of the Kentucky alum. His primary contributions will be on the boards and in the middle, where he can be expected to block a good amount of shots. Anthony Davis was included on team USA this summer not because they needed scorers, but because they needed a presence in the middle, and Davis was one of the best (Americans) around. Expecting anywhere between 7 and 10 rebounds per game and 1.5 to 2.5 blocks is not unreasonable. As for on the offensive end, he should be able to finish in double digits, where I’m expecting anywhere between 11 and 14 points a game from him. He won’t be the most impactful player on your roster this year, but he will definitely have an impact.
As for his ceiling, which I’ve touched on a little bit, I wanted to throw in one more tid bit. Draftexpress.com, which is one of the premiere scouting services on the Internet, projects Anthony Davis’s ceiling as “Blake Griffin meets Tyson Chandler”. That’s insane. For Griffin’s career, in only two years, he’s averaged over 20 points and 11 rebounds per game. If you can get Davis for the long term and expect those numbers on offensive, while throwing in Chandler’s blocks on defense, well, you are pretty much set. Keep in mind that Davis was a guard until midway through high school when he hit a ridiculous growth spurt. The Unibrow is crazy athletic for a guy his size.
The most important thing here is to remember that Davis is still young and isn’t the primary option on his team. Eric Gordon is a scorer by nature, and he and Ryan Anderson should carry the offensive load for most of the season. Davis might not catch on to the offensive side of things at first. While there is almost no doubt that he eventually will be a force on both sides of the ball, remember that he’s still young and his main value right now lies in his rebounding and blocked shots. The points will come, just not right away.
In the next edition of this series I’ll be taking a look at Bradley Beal and how he fits in with his new team the Washington Wizards, and how he might be able to impact your fantasy team this season.
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