It’s easy to predict something like; I think Kevin Durant will win the scoring title. It’s a bit more out there to predict that Eric Gordon will make his first all-star team (which he will). But this is about making bold predictions. This is about predicting things that most would people would think was crazy, but might just come true.
Now I am not going out and betting a bunch of money on any of these predictions coming true. Essentially what these predictions are doing is showing you who some of the guys I really like for this season are and what I think they could be capable of.
Here are some of the crazier things I could see happening with some of the fantasy players I really like going into this season:
John Wall finishes the season as a top three point guard: The debate for who is the third best point guard is being contested between Deron Williams, Russell Westbrook and in some people’s minds, Stephen Curry. But I think John Wall is ready to enter the discussion in his sophomore season. Wall has some things he needs to improve on including his FG% and outside shooting, but those are things that should come to him as he gets comfortable with the professional game.
Wall showed as a rookie that he has what it takes to be a star in the NBA and be a top ten fantasy player as well. Most people think he’s a year away, and they might be right, but let’s look at what he is capable of. 19 PPG, 8.5 APG, 4.5 RPG and 2 SPG, those stats can hold up against any of the other contenders for the number three point guard. If he does improve his percentage and finds a bit of range there’s no reason he can’t make the next step this season.
Danny Granger is a top five scorer: A couple years ago this prediction wouldn’t have been bold at all, but Granger was a bit of a letdown last season and barely finished with over 20 points per game. Many expect last season to repeat itself as the Pacers are better with an improving Darren Collison and Roy Hibbert and the addition of David West.
I agree the Pacers are better, but Granger is still the guy who is going to get the ball and I think he gets better looks than ever before with other capable players around him. I think Granger gets back to the 18 shots per game range and could get back to the 25+ points per game he had a couple years back.
Austin Daye will be a top 75 player: This one is really going out on a limb considering that Daye isn’t even being drafted in many leagues right now. I’m worried about his playing time considering the Pistons re-signed Tayshaun Prince and have a wealth of overpaid and untalented big men taking up space, but they seem committed to Daye and Daye seems committed to breaking out this season. Many people are calling Daye the new Tayshaun, but I think his upside is much higher than that of Prince, at least for fantasy purposes. If Daye gets 25 – 30 minutes per game like he should I can see him putting up a stat line of 15 PPG, 6 RPG, 1 SPG, 1 BPG and 1.5 3PG.
Danilo Gallinari makes his first all-star team: I like a lot of the guys on the Nuggets, especially Ty Lawson. But I absolutely love Danilo Gallinari and I think he is going to blow up on the Nuggets this season. Denver has a lot of really good role players, but no star to take center stage, I think that’s the role Gallinari could fill. The Italian swingman has never averaged better than the 15.6 points he had last season, but I think he could elevate his game all the way close to 20 per game this season.
If Gallinari can even score 18 PPG while knocking down a couple treys per game and grabbing 5 – 6 rebounds he is a steal in the 8th round where he is being drafted now. Let’s also remember that Gallinari is one of the better free thrower shooters out there considering his high percentage couple with the amount of attempts he gets per game.
Jordan Hill will average a double-double per game and be a top 20 center: The Rockets are running out of time to find someone else to play center and I think they are growing more comfortable with the idea of Hill as their starting center. Last season Hill averaged 5.6 points, 4.3 rebounds and 0.7 blocks in just 15.6 minutes per game. If he is getting 30 minutes per game and he raises his game up a level this season he could definitely turn himself into a top 20 center.
If he starts I definitely think he gets double-digit points, the rebounds might be more of a stretch, but he also might have 1.5 blocks per game to help you out as well. Hill is one of my favorite deep league sleepers this season.
What are some of your own bold predictions for this season? What do you think the odds of some of my predictions coming true are? Give me your feedback and feel free to ask any questions you have.