Late round NBA fantasy selections are the most rewarding. You get to take a shot in the dark and hope that it turns into a home run. If not, the player can simply be dropped to waivers. Players like Pascal Siakam, Caris LeVert, and Buddy Hield were late-round picks last year that became great fantasy assets. The following are the top five late-round selections (rounds 9-13) for standard leagues (10-12 team).
Top Five NBA Fantasy Sleeper Picks
With Robinson becoming the starting center this year, he could lead the league in blocks per game. Robinson also offers double-double upside on a nightly basis. He’s a late-round pick that will finish as a top 50 player as long as he receives starter minutes. Robinson should definitely be reached for, as his stock will only continue to rise before the season commences.
Robert Covington was a great late-round pick last year and is going in the late rounds again this year. A forgotten player entering drafts, Covington quietly averaged 3.5 steals plus blocks per game and he is a great three-point shooter.
Covington was limited to 35 games last year due to a knee injury but is reportedly healthy for training camp. Head coach Ryan Saunders may play him more at power forward this year, which could increase his rebounding numbers. Covington is currently going in the early 13th round of drafts, which is a bargain given his upside. If he is there past the 11th round, get ready to pounce.
Many have written off Gordon Hayward after a subpar first full year with the Boston Celtics. Coming off of a major ankle injury, Hayward averaged 11 points, 4 rebounds, and 3 assists in 26 minutes per game. Now having a full offseason to train, Hayward is looking to get back to the player he used to be. Could he bust again this year? Sure. But Hayward is worth the gamble.
Going in the late 10th round, Hayward could be a difference-maker if he is able to carve out a significant scoring role in the Celtics offense. With Danny Ainge wanting to prove he didn’t make a mistake, Hayward should play more this year. The former Butler star is a great late-round selection.
The mystery man of the 2019 NBA draft, Darius Garland was a risk at number five overall by the Cleveland Cavaliers. As a result of tearing his meniscus and only playing five games in his freshman season at the University of Vanderbilt, Garland is very much an unknown. This is why he is the perfect flier in fantasy drafts.
Garland was considered the best point guard prospect coming into this year’s college basketball season before tearing his meniscus. Then he fell off of everybody’s radar until the draft. With top rookies Zion Williamson, Ja Morant, and RJ Barrett costing owners early and mid-round picks, Garland is the ideal rookie to target.
He is currently going in the late 13th round of drafts. He should start on a bad Cavaliers team, splitting playmaking duties with sophomore Collin Sexton. With 25 plus minutes right out of the gate and incredibly talented, Garland is a must draft after round 10.
Ricky Rubio signing with the Phoenix Suns has been one of the underrated topics this offseason. After having a solid, yet unspectacular tenure with the Minnesota Timberwolves and Utah Jazz, Rubio is quickly becoming a journeyman player. The Suns should have a better lineup this year, and Rubio should be the primary ball-handler on offense.
His assists dipped during the past two years in Utah (5.7 in Utah compared to 8.5 in Minnesota) but they should improve in Phoenix. The Suns play at a fast pace and disregard defense, which should help Rubio’s numbers. There is a possibility Rubio gets injured (only played 70 plus games four out of eight seasons) or gets shut down if the Suns start tanking again, but considering the asking price, he needs to be drafted. Currently being drafted in the late 13th round, Rubio makes the top five of late-round selections.
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