This will go down as one of the strangest NBA seasons in history, and that feeling is amplified if you play fantasy basketball. But, at this point, most fantasy seasons are coming to a close. We've made it through the postponements, the extended absences and the bizarre lineups.
We've also had some great, positive surprises this season, like the emergence of Julius Randle and the Knicks. And even though some teams are underperforming, like the Raptors, their struggles have resulted in positive developments for players – Chris Boucher, for example. Below is a list of the biggest surprise players from this season. If you were lucky enough to have one on your team, there's a good chance you had a successful year.
Julius Randle, Knicks
Randle has been a solid fantasy player for a while. He ranked in the top-55 in total production from 2017-18 through 2019-20. But last season wasn't even his best on a per-game basis. It seemed like he had capped out his potential as a player – someone who makes for a solid third option.
Things changed this season. With a new coach in Tom Thibodeau at the helm, Randle was deemed the Knicks' star. He's setting a career high in usage rate (28.8%), and he leads the NBA in minutes per game (37.5). That's led to him being the league's fifth-most productive fantasy player.
The two most significant changes to his game are his three-point shooting and his passing. After previously being a