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2014-15 Fantasy Basketball Rankings – Forwards

A list of the top forwards to draft for the 2014-15 fantasy basketball season.

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F

1. Kevin Durant  Oklahoma City Thunder

2014-15 Projected Stats (per game)
G Min Pts Reb Ast Stl Blk 3PM TO FG% FT%
View Kevin Durant's 2014-15 projected stats.

Fresh off winning his first MVP award, Durant enters his eighth year in the league as a superstar in every sense of the word. Durant played 39 minutes per game in 2013-14 and had his best scoring season (32.0 points per game) ever, while also dishing out a career-best 5.5 assists per contest. He also averaged 7.4 rebounds, 1.3 steals, and 0.7 blocks per game and shot 50 percent from the floor, 39 percent from beyond the arc (while recording a career-best 2.4 three-pointers per game), and 89 percent from the charity stripe. Still only 25-years-old, the best may be yet to come from Durant. That's a scary thought for the rest of the league, and Durant should also be well-rested after withdrawing from Team USA for the FIBA Basketball World Cup this summer. The five-time NBA All-Star enters the 2014-15 season as the consensus number one overall fantasy player yet again, and with his ability to stuff the box score in practically every way imaginable, Durant will justifiably be the first player taken in a majority of drafts.

2. LeBron James  Cleveland Cavaliers

2014-15 Projected Stats (per game)
G Min Pts Reb Ast Stl Blk 3PM TO FG% FT%
View LeBron James's 2014-15 projected stats.

LeBron James has returned to Cleveland after four years in Miami. While James gave up the position as the top ranked fantasy basketball player to Kevin Durant over the last couple seasons, he still put up excellent all-around numbers last season. Through 77 games, James averaged 27.1 points, 6.9 rebounds, 6.4 assists, 1.6 steals, and 0.3 blocks (a career low) in 38 minutes. The four-time MVP hit a career-high 57 percent of his field goals, while hitting 38 percent of his three-pointers (1.5 three-pointers per game), and 75 percent of his free throws. His value should not change significantly in his return to his home state. Even with teammates like Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving, James should be the focus of new coach David Blatt's Princeton-style offense. He should have the ball in his hands a great deal, and his counting numbers should remain excellent. The one concern is that James has played very heavy minutes through his 11-year career, and Blatt may want to manage his minutes in a Spurs style that utilizes a deep rotation to limit his players' minutes. James looked like he lost significant weight this offseason, which may allow the superstar to play more minutes, but he may also spend less time in the paint. After spending four years as the NBA's villain after The Decision, James should revel in the love of his well-received homecoming.

3. James Harden  Houston Rockets

2014-15 Projected Stats (per game)
G Min Pts Reb Ast Stl Blk 3PM TO FG% FT%
View James Harden's 2014-15 projected stats.

During the 2013-14 season, James Harden was able to reward the fantasy owners who drafted him and posted impressive numbers in his second season with the Rockets. He finished the year averaging 25.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, 6.1 assists, 1.6 steals, and 2.4 three-pointers made, while playing 38 minutes per game. Although the loss of Chandler Parsons in free agency initially felt like it might sting a bit, the Rockets bounced back with the signing of Trevor Ariza, so the starting lineup didn't take as big of a hit as originally thought, and the team will still have a decent shooter to open the lane for Harden to drive to the hoop. Harden also continued his consistent shooting last season by slightly improving his field goal percentage from 44 percent in the 2012-13 season, to 46 percent last season. While his field goal percentage increased, it stayed the same from behind the arc, as he shot 37 percent from deep for the second season in a row. Look for Harden to continue to get plenty of shots up again this season, and post scoring averages in the mid to upper 20's, as most of the roster is pretty similar to last year, and the Rockets will be in the playoff hunt once again. While it seems strange to say, Harden could carry an even larger load on offense this season with Jeremy Lin having been traded to the Lakers this offseason.

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