Fantasy Basketball Sleepers 2020-2021: Everyone in the early rounds of fantasy basketball drafts will be acquiring a stud one way or another. It’s not difficult to select one All-Star over another. What is truly difficult in fantasy is finding fantasy NBA late-round picks who contribute like stars at times and carry your roster from the ground up.
Sleepers are often what separate the best rosters in leagues from the rest. A crucial step is doing your due diligence in the later draft rounds. Don’t just find players who fit your team’s remaining build. Fantasy basketball managers are better off finding cheaper players capable of producing at early-round levels if all breaks right.
Here are four fantasy basketball draft sleepers to target regardless of league. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to hit me up on Twitter @RotoSurgeon!
Fantasy Basketball Sleepers 2020-2021
Dejounte Murray, PG, San Antonio Spurs
Dejounte Murray should be starting 2020-2021 without any minutes restrictions. Remember, he was coming off of a torn ACL that cost him all of the 2018-19 season. He was held out from playing back-to-backs early in 2019-2020.
Now that he’s rounding back into full physical form, Murray is a fantastic young point guard who is getting picked within a glut of veterans and low-upside picks after Round 5 in most drafts.
Albeit on low volume, Murray’s shooting numbers improved across-the-board last season. He is still not a “good" shooter nor a “scorer" by any means but it is fair to say that he is improving and even if the three-point percentage and free throw take a slight tick down, he will not be killing his team or your fantasy team with the shots he takes.
Murray won’t average a triple-double, but he can provide plenty of rebounds and assists while anchoring your team in the steals department. He could provide a three per game along with nearly 15 points if he continues to develop.
Murray is coming into his 5th NBA season and recently turned 24 years old, in the words of the immaculate Michael Jordan, “The ceiling is the ROOF."
Also notable for Murray’s fantasy value, fellow Spurs guard Derrick White will likely miss the start of the season due to a toe injury that required offseason surgery. White is going to miss all preseason games and could be slowly reintroduced to the lineup and rotation when healthy.
P.J. Washington, PF, Charlotte Hornets
The Charlotte Hornets are in an interesting spot for this upcoming season. They are not a good team, but they are not a bad team thanks to the addition of Gordon Hayward along with the presumed development of their young corps.
P.J Washington probably has the highest upside of this corps and is coming off of a solid rookie campaign in which he posted 12.2 points, 5.4 rebounds, 2.1 assists, 1.5 threes along with nearly a block and steal per game.
Washington is coming into his sophomore season as the starting power forward in Charlotte but will be sliding over to play a role as small-ball center often during games. The rebounding, blocking, and scoring potential from the 5 is extremely intriguing given that he will be much closer to the basket than last season.
Washington will still shoot plenty of threes this season given that he was effective from range as a rookie (37.4% on four attempts per game). How many more he shoots is up for debate but last year’s number’s are a very solid floor to work off of. If you can get two threes per game out of your big man, that is huge no matter what.
Donte DiVincenzo, SG, Milwaukee Bucks
With the Bucks acquiring Jrue Holiday in exchange for Eric Bledsoe, George Hill, and a treasure trove of draft picks — along with the subsequent departure of Wesley Matthews — plenty of minutes are now available to seize for 3rd-year guard, Donte DiVincenzo.
The Bucks head into the 2020-2021 season with a much top-heavier roster than years past and will require their starters and integral bench players to carry a significant load. The signings of free agents D.J, Augustin, Torrey Craig, and Bryn Forbes are not insignificant but should not blockade DiVincenzo’s increased role.
DiVincenzo only played 23mpg in 2019-2020 but that is a significant jump from 15.2mpg his rookie season. Not to mention, Giannis and Khris Middleton only played about 30 minutes per game. The rotations were deep with how talented last season’s roster was. DiVincenzo only started about one-third of last season’s games and contributed regardless of title.
His fantasy value will be derived from threes and steals while contributing better in points, rebounds, and assists moving forward. He will not shoot enough free throws to hurt managers with a potentially mediocre free throw percentage, same for the field goal percentage which he is closer to decent (for a guard). He will be a key rotational piece for Milwaukee whether off of the bench again or as a starter.
Obi Toppin, PF, New York Knicks
With the 8th overall selection in the 2020 NBA Draft, the New York Knicks selected Obi Toppin, PF from the University of Dayton. Toppin is a physical force who will be most effective when playing near the rim. He has a nose for the ball and should produce from the jump in New York.
The only real problem present is starting power forward Julius Randle who is still living off of name value and hollow production. Randle has essentially worn-out his welcome in multiple landing spots up to this point in his career and could find his way off the starting role with a slow start to the season.
Toppin was not the best player in this past draft, but he was arguably the most “NBA-ready" given his age, frame, and athleticism. Toppin will turn 23 this coming March and is coming off of a banner year in college basketball where he took home the Wooden, Naismith, and AP Player of the Year awards. While he did this as a redshirt sophomore in a fairly easy A-10 division, Toppin deserved his accolades. If his shot can translate from three, Toppin should be a solid contributor for a very long time.
His contributions can come in the form of immediate, nightly double-doubles that come with the occasional block, three, and a field goal percentage above 50% or just around it. All you really have to do is stomach an unfortunately gaudy free throw percentage this season (and probably moving forward). Toppin is currently getting selected after pick 100 and has the makings of a top-60 contributor right now if given the minutes. There is a very good chance he ends up winning rookie of the year off of volume with how desperate the Knicks are to instill hope in their miserable franchise.
Get ready for 2020-2021 NBA fantasy basketball & betting
After learning about Fantasy Basketball Sleepers 2020-2021 and targeting your fantasy NBA late-round picks:
Kev Mahserejian is an NFL/NBA/MLB analyst at The Game Day, residing in Los Angeles, CA. He graduated from the University of Southern California in 2017 and began creating sports content soon after. Kev currently writes fantasy and betting pieces while also hosting his podcast The Operating Room with various guests from the sports industry to discuss topics primarily regarding fantasy. He also writes for RotoBaller and is quite active on his Twitter @RotoSurgeon.