The middle round NBA fantasy selections a fantasy owner uses, start to separate the good from the bad. The players taken in the early middle rounds should have elite upside if everything goes right for that player. In the late middle rounds, picks should be for solid established players that could have good seasons.
Top Mid-Round Fantasy Picks
Hassan Whiteside was a mid-round steal last year, and he will be once again this year. He posted averages of 12 points, 11 rebounds, and 2 blocks per game last year in 23 minutes on the Miami Heat. Whiteside was traded this offseason to Portland, where more minutes should be there for him. With starter Jusuf Nurkic on the shelf until the all-star break, Whiteside will be the Portland Trailblazers starting center.
He should flirt with 25 plus minutes per game which is enough for him to average a double-double. Currently ranked as an early sixth-round draft pick, Whiteside is being undervalued and disrespected by fantasy experts. He is a player worth reaching for in the fifth round of drafts.
Jonas Valanciunas was always a per minute beast on the Toronto Raptors, but it took a trade to the Memphis Grizzlies for him to be unleashed. In his 19 games on Memphis last year, Valanciunas posted averages of 20 points and 11 rebounds per game in 28 minutes. Valanciunas is being underrated as he is currently being drafted in the late ninth-round by most. Even with the emergence of Jaren Jackson Jr., Valanciunas should still produce in what should be a fast-paced Grizzlies squad this year under new coach Taylor Jenkins. Valanciunas is an excellent option if you passed on big men in the early rounds.
De’Aaron Fox took his game to the next level in his sophomore season. The exciting, young point guard averaged 17 points and 7 assists per game last year while increasing his shooting percentages significantly. Fox is being drafted around the late seventh-round, which is good value for a guy with so much potential. While there is some risk under new head coach Luke Walton, Fox is still a solid pick.
He should build on last year’s breakout and could flirt with 20 points and 10 assists per game. The point guard position is very top-heavy this year, so this increases Fox’s value. If you took a lot of forwards and big men early, Fox is one of the top mid-round selections.
Derrick Favors was traded this past offseason from the Utah Jazz to the New Orleans Pelicans. While many have forgotten Favors due to him being overshadowed by Rudy Gobert in Utah, Favors will now have a fresh start in New Orleans. Over the past few years, the Pelican’s centers have thrived playing next to superstar Anthony Davis. While Davis has taken his talents to LA, Zion Williamson has taken his place, and the Pelicans will still run a fast-paced offense.
With Williamson getting most of the attention, Favors should post fantastic numbers this season. Favors averaged 12 points and 7 rebounds in only 23 minutes for the Jazz last season, so he could be great with starters minutes. Currently drafted as an early ninth-round pick, Favors could be a league winner.
Jayson Tatum made a name for himself as a rookie during the 2018 playoffs, leading the Boston Celtics to an appearance in the Eastern Conference Finals. Last year, many thought Tatum would have a breakout season entering his sophomore campaign. Instead, he, as well as the other Celtics, didn’t take that next step. Now entering year three, this is a make or break year for Tatum.
Currently being drafted towards the end of round five, Tatum is a good pick for those who didn’t grab an elite small forward in the early rounds. Small forward is another shallow position this year, so Tatum could be a great option. There is some risk, but with Kemba Walker posing as the only threat to touches, he should have every opportunity to break out. Tatum should be scooped up if he drops in drafts.
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