T.J. McConnell
T.J. McConnell
27-Year-Old GuardG
Indiana Pacers
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Following four productive seasons in Philadelphia, McConnell has taken his talents to Indiana on a two-year contract. After spending 2017-18 as the 76ers' as the primary backup to Ben Simmons at point guard, the arrival of Jimmy Butler as a capable floor leader resulted in McConnell taking a reduced role in 2018-19, and the 19.3 minutes played per game was the lowest mark of the point guard's young career. His production last season, however, was still on par with his career averages, and he did shoot a career-high 52.5 percent from the field. On the Pacers, McConnell's role is up in the air, as he will be competing with fellow point guard Aaron Holiday for the backup spot behind expected starter Malcolm Brogdon. While Holiday has shown some promise and is more familiar with the Pacers' scheme, McConnell is the more experienced player, and one that's racked up valuable playing minutes. Ultimately, as a true backup, McConnell is probably only worth exploring as a fantasy option in deep formats. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year, $7 million contract with the Pacers in July of 2019.
Nears double-double in 20 minutes
GIndiana Pacers
October 15, 2019
McConnell managed 10 points (4-6 FG, 2-2 FT), eight assists, three rebounds, two steals, and one block in 20 minutes during Tuesday's 119-111 loss to the Timberwolves.
McConnell has proven himself to be a scrappy backup point guard who can create for himself and others, albeit with limited shooting range. He's likely battling with Aaron Holiday for the backup role behind Malcolm Brogdon, though either way McConnell shouldn't be expected to hold value outside of the deepest leagues.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
With Ben Simmons making his career debut and getting the bulk of his minutes at point guard, McConnell wound up seeing a decreased role in the backcourt in Year 3. He averaged 6.3 points, 3.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 1.2 steals across 22.4 minutes, all of which were slightly smaller numbers than a year prior. McConnell did show some semblance of a three-point stroke with his impressive 43.5 percent clip from deep, though it's worth it to note that he did take just 62 total attempts for the year, which lessens the impact that the number had. Looking ahead to the upcoming campaign, McConnell is likely looking at a similar, if not smaller, role in the backcourt. Both Simmons and J.J. Redick are back and likely to start at the two guard spots, while former No. 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz is expected to play in his first full season after being limited to just 14 games last year. As a result, there's likely less playing time for McConnell overall. If McConnell draws a spot start due to an injury, he'll be someone to consider for DFS purposes, but otherwise, he can be safely avoided in most leagues.
For two seasons in a row, the once undrafted McConnell survived a camp where he might have been cut, and then worked his way into a significant role in the rotation. As a rookie, he averaged 19.8 minutes, 6.1 points, 4.5 assists, and 1.2 steals. As a sophomore, he increased those totals to 26.3 minutes, 6.9 points, 6.6 assists, and 1.7 steals. He missed only one game each season. McConnell has established himself as a trustworthy backup, and should have no difficulty making the 2017-18 roster, but he’ll face a whole new challenge this year. After the 76ers drafted Markelle Fultz first overall this summer, and with the pending healthy return of veteran Jerryd Bayless and 2016 first overall pick Ben Simmons – who the 76ers have said they want to use as a part-time point guard – McConnell faces the deepest and most talented depth chart he’s seen in his career. If everyone stays healthy above him, he has almost no chance of repeating even his rookie season usage.
As an undrafted rookie out of Arizona, McConnell defied the odds to break camp with the 76ers, opening the season as the team’s No. 2 point guard. He would end up holding down that role all season thanks to his defensive toughness and abilities as a distributor. McConnell finished with averages of 6.1 points, 4.5 assists, 3.1 rebounds and 1.2 steals across 19.8 minutes per game in his 81 appearances, with his steal total ranking first among all rookies. Though McConnell’s contract isn’t guaranteed for the upcoming season, he proved himself to be a capable reserve in his first year in the league and looks like a lock to make the roster. Though he’ll again open the season as the top backup point guard, this time behind offseason pickup Jerryd Bayless, McConnell could see his overall responsibilities diminish in 2016-17. Along with acquiring Bayless, the 76ers bolstered their roster through the draft with No. 1 overall choice Ben Simmons, who will see most of his time at power forward but is advanced as a ball-handler and passer and could run the offense for extended stretches.
More Fantasy News
Joins Pacers
GIndiana Pacers
July 3, 2019
McConnell has agreed to a two-year, $7 million deal with the Pacers, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports.
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Well-rounded stat line in win
GPhiladelphia 76ers
April 10, 2019
McConnell totaled 18 points (9-10 FG), six assists, two rebounds and a block across 23 minutes in the 76ers' win over the Bulls on Wednesday.
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Starting Wednesday
GPhiladelphia 76ers
April 10, 2019
McConnell will start Wednesday's contest against the Bulls, Paul Hudrick of NBCS Philadelphia reports.
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Productive in limited minutes
GPhiladelphia 76ers
April 1, 2019
McConnell finished with 15 points (7-10 FG, 1-1 3Pt), three rebounds, two blocks, one assist, and one steal in 17 minutes during Monday's 122-102 loss to the Mavericks.
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Will start at point guard
GPhiladelphia 76ers
March 25, 2019
McConnel is starting Monday's game against Orlando, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
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