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2014-15 Fantasy Basketball Rankings

RotoWire's fantasy basketball rankings for the 2014-15 NBA season.

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1.
Stephen Curry 
Golden State Warriors  PG / SG / G

2014-15 Preseason Proj:   78 G   36.5 MIN   23.6 PTS  4.2 REB  7.9 AST  1.6 STL  0.2 BLK  3.4 3PT  

Curry avoided significant injury for the second straight season in 2013-14, playing 78 games for the second consecutive season. Concerns about his wobbly ankles are slowly fading. He averaged a team-high 24.0 points on 47-percent shooting with 4.3 rebounds, 8.5 assists, 1.6 steals, and 0.2 blocks in 37 minutes per game. Curry also led the league in three-pointers made for a second straight season with 261. Not only is he one of the better field-goal shooters in the league, Curry is an excellent free-throw shooter. He made 89 percent of his freebies last season, and he's getting to the line more often, averaging a career-high 4.5 free-throw attempts per game. Curry can score from anywhere. Turnovers can be a problem, but he has improved his point-guard skills from when he first entered the league. Curry continues to hone his court vision, making those around him a little bit better. The 8.5 apg last year were good for sixth in the NBA. Heading into the new season, the Warriors added a competent backup point guard in Shaun Livingston, and we could see Curry playing a few minutes less per game at point guard, but he should continue to lead the Dubs in assists. A new head coach means some tweaks to the game plan, but Steve Kerr is a smart enough guy to leave Curry alone. Perhaps Kerr will give him some guidance in the finer points of point-guard play, but nothing needs to be done in terms of Curry's scoring or shot selection.

2.
LeBron James 
Cleveland Cavaliers  PF / SF / F

2014-15 Preseason Proj:   77 G   37.5 MIN   27.1 PTS  6.7 REB  6.3 AST  1.7 STL  0.6 BLK  1.4 3PT  

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  SG / G

2014-15 Preseason Proj:   77 G   38.2 MIN   26.0 PTS  4.5 REB  6.3 AST  1.6 STL  0.3 BLK  2.5 3PT  

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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