Lauri Markkanen

Lauri Markkanen

24-Year-Old ForwardF
Cleveland Cavaliers
Out
Injury Ankle
Est. Return 2/6/2022
2021 Fantasy Outlook
Markkanen saw his workload reduced for the second season in a row in 2020-21, and his health also remained an issue. Markkanen has appeared in just 153 games over the past three seasons. He hit career lows with 13.6 points and 5.3 rebounds, though he did reach career highs in field-goal percentage (48.0) and three-point percentage (40.2). He'll be joining a new team in 2020-21, as he was part of a sign-and-trade that landed him in Cleveland on a four-year, $64 million contract. Given the size of his contract, it seems possible Markkanen will start at power forward, even if that means bringing the No. 3 overall pick Evan Mobley or Kevin Love off the bench. The other option to get Markkanen in the starting lineup would be trying to play him at small forward, but that's something he's done very little of in the past. That would also result in kicking Isaac Okoro -- the fifth pick from last year -- to the bench, though it'd result in less backlash from the fanbase. Regardless, Markkanen should be in line to see minutes anywhere from the high-20s to the mid-30s on the Cavaliers depending on how he produces. He should be the team's No. 3 option at worst at any given time, and that could improve to No. 2 or even No. 1 if he sees minutes with the bench unit. Ultimately, this is a fresh start for Markkanen, and while it may not be the smoothest transition into a new role, it certainly has potential on the rebuilding Cavs. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a four-year, $67.47 million contract with the Bulls in August of 2021. Traded to the Cavaliers in August of 2021.
Personal Bio/PreCareer Summary

Lauri Elias Markkanen was born in Vantaa, Finland in 1997 to Pekka and Riikka Markkanen. His father Pekka attended the University of Kansas in 1989-90 and then played professionally in Finland. As a teenager, the younger Markkanen saw time at the junior level for HoNsU in Jyvaskyla. He then moved on to HBA-Marsky in the second-tier Finnish league before leaving for the University of Arizona in 2016. Markkanen has represented Finland in many international events, with his most notable accomplishments finishing as leading scorer at both the 2015 U18 Euros and 2016 U20 Euros. He has been actively involved with eco-friendly causes raising awareness for climate change. You can follow Markkanen on Twitter (@MarkkanenLauri) and Instagram (@laurimarkkanen). It did not take long for Markkanen to establish himself as a go-to player for coach Sean Miller at Arizona. The Finnish seven-footer scored at least 13 points in his first nine games, including the first of his six double-doubles for the season. He helped the Wildcats beat Michigan State and Texas A&M prior to the Pac-12 Conference schedule. Markkanen's production did not slow down against conference foes. He had a string of 20-point games in wins over Colorado, Arizona State and USC, including a career-high 30 points in the win over the rival Sun Devils. Despite slumping briefly in early February with four straight single-point efforts, the towering forward rebounded late in conference play and kept the momentum through the postseason. He helped Arizona win the Pac-12 Conference Tournament by averaging 20.0 points. The squad advanced to the Sweet 16 with wins over North Dakota and Saint Mary's. Markkanen averaged 18.0 points and 8.5 rebounds in that pair of victories. The Wildcat season ended against Xavier. Markkanen then announced his intention to enter the NBA Draft after the season.

Likely out at least two weeks
FCleveland Cavaliers
Ankle
January 25, 2022
Markkaken is expected to miss at least two weeks with the sprained right ankle he suffered in Sunday's 94-87 win over the Thunder, sources familiar with his injury situation tell Chris Fedor of The Cleveland Plain Dealer.
ANALYSIS
Markkanen sat out Monday's 95-93 win over the Knicks with the injury and was spotted walking out of the arena on crutches while sporting a walking boot -- a sign that he's dealing with something that's more than a day-to-day concern. The Cavaliers likely won't have a firm timeline for Markkanen's return until the swelling in his right ankle subsides, but fantasy managers should prepare for his absence to stretch through the first week of February, if not longer. Dean Wade entered the starting five in Markkanen's stead Monday, finishing with 13 points (4-8 FG, 4-7 3Pt, 1-2 FT), five rebounds and three steals in 35 minutes.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
Markkanen disappointingly saw a dropoff in production during his third season in the league, posting career lows in points (14.7), rebounds (6.3) and field goal percentage (42.5). To add to that, injuries have slowed his progress, as he's missed time in each season thus far. It could be a make-or-break year for Markkanen in Chicago, and it'll be interesting to see if he's able to thrive alongside center Wendell Carter and shoot-first guards Coby White and Zach LaVine. The 23-year-old will be looking for a bounce-back under new coach Billy Donovan, who will likely want to fully utilize the 7-footer's diverse offensive talents. Markkanen's range is a much sought-after quality for big men in the modern game, and he averaged 6.3 three-point attempts per while firing at a decent 34.4 percent clip last season. If he's able to consistently make threes, rebound and stay healthy, the ceiling appears high for Markkanen under his new coach.
Though Markkanen has struggled to stay healthy in his first two seasons, totaling only 120 games played, his time on the floor has been impressive. The No. 7 overall pick in 2017, Markkanen set career highs nearly across the board during his sophomore campaign. Notably, he became the first player in NBA history to average at least 18 points, 9 rebounds and 2 three-pointers at 21 years old or younger. While the Bulls signed Thaddeus Young to shore up frontcourt depth, Markkanen is still in line to start at power forward and see 30-plus minutes per game. It seems unlikely the 7-footer will ever be a force defensively or as a passer, but his upside as a scoring big with great rebounding ability is undeniable. In Markkanen's 52 appearances last season, he racked up eight 30-point games, 20 contests with at least 10 rebounds and five performances with five made threes. But he's not just a stretch-big. Markkanen has shown aggressiveness, making 3.3 free-throws per game last season. Only three other players 6-foot-10 or taller in 2018-19 converted at least 2 threes and 3 free-throws per game (Kevin Love, Blake Griffin and Danilo Gallinari). All things considered, Markkanen looks to be on track to become one of the NBA's top power forwards sooner than later.
The seventh overall pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, Markkanen wasted no time bursting onto the scene for the Bulls. He started all 68 games he appeared in, led Chicago in rebounds per game (7.5), had the third-highest scoring average on the team (15.2) of everyone who saw at least 24 games with the club, and became the fastest player in NBA history to 100 made three-pointers. The sky seems to be the limit for the 21-year-old, who also recorded 14 double-doubles and two 30-point games. The addition of Jabari Parker via free agency and Wendell Carter through the draft gives Markkanen some more frontcourt competition, though it’s hard to imagine Markkanen getting the short end of the stick. Though he missed a handful of games to due nagging back spasms towards the end of the season, it’s tough to judge the seriousness of the issue, as the Bulls were more than willing to sit key players in order to secure a higher draft pick. So, in evaluating his Fantasy stock for 2018-19, those absences can arguably be ignored.
Born in Finland, Markkanen opted to come Stateside for his collegiate career, but spent just one standout season in Arizona before declaring for the 2017 NBA Draft. With Arizona, the seven-foot big man showed an impressive jump shot for his size, shooting 49.2 percent from the field, which translated to a team-high 20.2 points per game. Markkanen was also able to hit from the perimeter with a 42.3 percent clip from the three-point line, giving him the size and offensive skill set that's highly coveted in today's NBA. That prompted the Bulls to select Markkanen with the seventh overall pick of this year's draft. He's heading into one of the more beneficial environments of this year's rookie class, as the Bulls are in full rebuild mode. They traded away superstar Jimmy Butler to the Timberwolves and could potentially part with Dwyane Wade as well, in what appears to be a youth movement in Chicago. Markkanen is a candidate to immediately jump into the starting lineup as a stretch-four with his shooting ability. While he's got a ton of work to do defensively and needs to bulk up in order to have a chance on the boards against some of the bigger power forwards in the league, Markkanen will still be one of the more intriguing rookies due to his offensive ability and opportunity for playing time in the frontcourt. Markkanen will have to hold of Nikola Mirotic and Bobby Portis for rights to a starter's job, but look for his role to ultimately expand as the year goes on. Markkanen could be worth taking a flier on in later rounds of deeper leagues, as the Bulls are fully expected to commit to his development as one of the young building blocks for the future.
More Fantasy News
Expected to miss multiple games
FCleveland Cavaliers
Ankle
January 24, 2022
Cavaliers head coach J.B. Bickerstaff said Monday that Markkanen (ankle) is still being evaluated, but he's expected to miss a few games, Evan Dammarell of WKYC 3News reports.
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Won't play Monday
FCleveland Cavaliers
Ankle
January 23, 2022
Markkanen (ankle) won't play Monday against the Knicks.
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X-rays return negative
FCleveland Cavaliers
Ankle
January 23, 2022
Markkanen had X-rays on his right ankle sprain come back negative after leaving Saturday's game against the Thunder, Chris Fedor of The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.
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Sprains right ankle
FCleveland Cavaliers
Ankle
January 22, 2022
Markkanen exited Saturday's game against the Thunder with a right ankle sprain and will not return, Serena Winters of Bally Sports Cleveland reports.
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Excellent against former team
FCleveland Cavaliers
January 20, 2022
Markkanen provided 28 points (9-14 FG, 5-9 3Pt, 5-6 FT), seven rebounds, one block and one steal across 33 minutes during Wednesday's 117-104 loss to the Bulls.
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