Week 21 Fantasy Basketball Player Rankings: The Playoffs Begin

It’s playoff time!

Week 21: March 16th – March 22th
Four Games: NYK, ORL, SAC, ATL, BOS, DEN, DET, GSW, LAC, MEM, MIL, MIN, NOP, MIA, CLE, IND, CHA, BKN, POR, SAS, TOR, UTA, WAS, PHI, OKC, DAL
Three Games: PHO, CHI, LAL, HOU

For most fantasy leagues, Week 21 represents the start of the fantasy playoffs, and the playoffs are what playing fantasy basketball is all about: the chance to prove that you are the best fantasy player in your league.

Here are our Week 21 rankings to help you navigate your first-round matchup. The Rankings are based on each player’s projected stats (which you can find here), as well as the number of games each player plays in Week 21. A few things to keep in mind:

  1. The table above shows the number of games each team plays in Week 21. Only four teams play three games, which makes it more difficult than usual to play players with only three games.
  2. RotoWire’s recommended strategy (which we’ve discussed since the preseason) for head-to-head leagues is to focus on being as dominate as you can in the six positive counting categories (points, rebounds, three-pointers, assists, steals, and blocks), even if that means you aren’t competitive in the other three categories (field goal percentage, free throw percentage, and turnovers).

This strategy is even more effective in the fantasy playoffs because all that matters now is advancing to the next round. As a result, these rankings take into account only the six positive counting categories. If you’re using a different punting strategy, you can create custom rest-of-season rankings here.

Point Guard

My Two Cents:

Marcus Smart’s production in the counting categories have been underrated all season, and with Isaiah Thomas’s (back/elbow) health in question, Smart becomes close to a must-add this week. Over the last month, Smart has averaged 9.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 1.8 steals, 1.3 3PM, and 0.3 blocks.

Mo Williams has played great since arriving in Charlotte (21 points, 7.9 assists, 2.5 rebounds, 0.8 steals, 0.2 blocks, 2.7 3PM), but with Kemba Walker working his way back into the rotation, I’d be nervous about the level of playing time Mo will get this week. I’d keep him out of your lineup in shallower leagues if possible.

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Isaiah Canaan projects to make 11.4 three-pointers this week, the third-highest in our projections. (I wish I had an audio clip from our Fantasy Basketball Podcast of Kyle McKeown yelling “Canaan Ball!” to put here.) Canaan is owned in just 22% of ESPN leagues.

Rank Player Games Overall Rank Overall Value ESPN %
PG1 Russell Westbrook 4 1 $67 100%
PG2 Stephen Curry 4 2 $64 100%
PG3 Chris Paul 4 5 $52 100%
PG4 Damian Lillard 4 7 $44 100%
PG5 John Wall 4 9 $42 100%
PG6 Ricky Rubio 4 10 $40 79%
PG7 Kyle Lowry 4 11 $39 98%
PG8 Kyrie Irving 4 14 $35 100%
PG9 Michael Carter-Williams 4 28 $30 84%
PG10 Kemba Walker 4 29 $29 80%
PG11 Mike Conley 4 30 $29 92%
PG12 Jeff Teague 4 34 $26 91%
PG13 Deron Williams 4 43 $22 75%
PG14 Isaiah Canaan 4 44 $21 22%
PG15 Isaiah Thomas 4 46 $21 73%
PG16 Rajon Rondo 4 48 $20 80%
PG17 Marcus Smart 4 49 $20 7%
PG18 George Hill 4 53 $19 55%
PG19 Elfrid Payton 4 55 $19 36%
PG20 Ty Lawson 4 58 $19 96%
PG21 Reggie Jackson 4 74 $14 74%
PG22 Goran Dragic 4 78 $12 92%
PG23 Louis Williams 4 87 $10 44%
PG24 Tony Parker 4 89 $9 83%
PG25 Eric Bledsoe 3 102 $5 96%
PG26 Mario Chalmers 4 103 $5 16%
PG27 Trey Burke 4 106 $4 34%
PG28 Dennis Schroder 4 107 $4 12%
PG29 Ray McCallum 4 109 $3 5%
PG30 Mo Williams 4 115 $3 66%
PG31 Devin Harris 4 118 $2 3%
PG32 Greivis Vasquez 4 119 $1 3%
PG33 Brandon Knight 3 126 $1 81%
PG34 Jarrett Jack 4 132 $1 30%
PG35 D.J. Augustin 4 138 $1 16%
PG36 Ish Smith 4 152 $1 3%
PG37 Andre Miller 4 153 $1 1%
PG38 Nick Calathes 4 158 $ – 0%
PG39 Aaron Brooks 3 168 $ – 19%
PG40 C.J. Watson 4 172 $ – 2%
PG41 Shaun Livingston 4 173 $ – 5%
PG42 Gary Neal 4 177 $ – 3%
PG43 Patrick Beverley 3 178 $ – 19%

Shooting Guard

My Two Cents:

The only shooting guard with three games this week that I’m willing to play is James Harden. There are simply too many other good options to consider playing anyone else on Chicago, Phoenix, or Los Angeles.

Rank Player Games Overall Rank Overall Value ESPN %
SG1 Klay Thompson 4 12 $39 99%
SG2 Victor Oladipo 4 15 $35 85%
SG3 Monta Ellis 4 22 $31 97%
SG4 Gordon Hayward 4 23 $30 95%
SG5 Dwyane Wade 4 33 $27 95%
SG6 DeMar DeRozan 4 47 $20 94%
SG7 Eric Gordon 4 57 $19 54%
SG8 James Harden 3 60 $18 100%
SG9 Kyle Korver 4 61 $18 79%
SG10 Danny Green 4 64 $17 56%
SG11 Bradley Beal 4 66 $16 72%
SG12 Andrew Wiggins 4 67 $16 82%
SG13 J.J. Redick 4 68 $16 60%
SG14 J.R. Smith 4 70 $15 47%
SG15 Kevin Martin 4 73 $15 75%
SG16 Joe Johnson 4 79 $12 79%
SG17 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 4 81 $12 10%
SG18 Avery Bradley 4 82 $12 35%
SG19 Tony Allen 4 84 $11 6%
SG20 Jason Richardson 4 85 $11 2%
SG21 Evan Turner 4 90 $9 18%
SG22 Rodney Stuckey 4 92 $8 39%
SG23 Alexey Shved 4 93 $8 13%
SG24 Langston Galloway 4 99 $6 12%
SG25 Iman Shumpert 4 104 $4 4%
SG26 Dion Waiters 4 108 $4 7%
SG27 Ben McLemore 4 111 $3 10%
SG28 Will Barton 4 117 $2 7%
SG29 Arron Afflalo 4 120 $1 48%
SG30 Markel Brown 4 122 $1 0%
SG31 Jodie Meeks 4 127 $1 4%
SG32 Courtney Lee 4 128 $1 7%
SG33 Manu Ginobili 4 129 $1 23%
SG34 Terrence Ross 4 130 $1 13%
SG35 Randy Foye 4 131 $1 1%
SG36 Gerald Henderson 4 133 $1 20%
SG37 Tim Hardaway 4 135 $1 7%
SG38 Dante Exum 4 147 $1 1%
SG39 Henry Walker 4 148 $1 1%
SG40 Kent Bazemore 4 149 $1 0%
SG41 O.J. Mayo 4 156 $1 6%
SG42 Tyler Johnson 4 159 $ – 1%
SG43 Marco Belinelli 4 170 $ – 1%
SG44 Rodney Hood 4 181 $ – 1%
SG45 Evan Fournier 4 186 $ – 4%
SG46 P.J. Tucker 3 190 $ – 24%
SG47 Lance Stephenson 4 192 $ – 24%
SG48 Anthony Morrow 4 193 $ – 2%
SG49 Elijah Millsap 4 199 $ – 0%
SG50 Bojan Bogdanovic 4 200 $ – 1%

Small Forward

My Two Cents:

Jae Crowder has a great chance to accumulate 6+ three-pointers and steals this week. He also provides solid production in rebounds and blocks, which makes him a solid add this week.

Even if Josh Smith and Trevor Ariza are usually in your lineup, this might be a week to go with a different option due to their three-game schedule.

Rank Player Games Overall Rank Overall Value ESPN %
SF1 LeBron James 4 4 $55 100%
SF2 Kawhi Leonard 4 6 $46 98%
SF3 Draymond Green 4 13 $38 81%
SF4 Rudy Gay 4 24 $30 99%
SF5 Khris Middleton 4 27 $30 59%
SF6 Nicolas Batum 4 32 $27 82%
SF7 Tyreke Evans 4 38 $25 86%
SF8 Chandler Parsons 4 41 $22 87%
SF9 Giannis Antetokounmpo 4 50 $20 70%
SF10 Jae Crowder 4 59 $18 7%
SF11 Danilo Gallinari 4 65 $17 46%
SF12 Luol Deng 4 69 $16 69%
SF13 Thaddeus Young 4 72 $15 78%
SF14 C.J. Miles 4 77 $13 6%
SF15 Wilson Chandler 4 80 $12 51%
SF16 DeMarre Carroll 4 83 $11 32%
SF17 Matt Barnes 4 88 $10 7%
SF18 Michael Kidd-Gilchrist 4 91 $8 33%
SF19 Jeff Green 4 95 $8 69%
SF20 Andre Iguodala 4 96 $7 14%
SF21 Paul Pierce 4 101 $5 40%
SF22 Luc Mbah a Moute 4 112 $3 7%
SF23 Harrison Barnes 4 123 $1 21%
SF24 Marvin Williams 4 125 $1 1%
SF25 James Johnson 4 146 $1 5%
SF26 Solomon Hill 4 151 $1 3%
SF27 Trevor Ariza 3 154 $1 75%
SF28 Caron Butler 4 155 $1 1%
SF29 Otto Porter 4 163 $ – 1%
SF30 Omri Casspi 4 167 $ – 1%
SF31 Jerami Grant 4 175 $ – 1%
SF32 Jared Dudley 4 176 $ – 1%
SF33 Hollis Thompson 4 179 $ – 1%
SF34 Cleanthony Early 4 180 $ – 0%
SF35 Josh Smith 3 188 $ – 76%

Power Forward

My Two Cents:

There was some concern about whether Robert Covington would ever regain his pre-injury level of playing time in Philadelphia. Over the past three games, he’s averaged 26.3 minutes, so feel free to deploy him as usual.

If you are lacking three-pointers and steals, Ersan Ilyasova projects to get five three-pointers and three steals this week. I would have to be a little desperate to trust him, but his unusual-for-his-position production makes him interesting this week.

Rank Player Games Overall Rank Overall Value ESPN %
PF1 Anthony Davis 4 3 $56 100%
PF2 Paul Millsap 4 17 $34 97%
PF3 LaMarcus Aldridge 4 19 $33 100%
PF4 Blake Griffin 4 26 $30 98%
PF5 Greg Monroe 4 35 $26 89%
PF6 Serge Ibaka 4 36 $26 99%
PF7 Kevin Love 4 37 $26 100%
PF8 Tim Duncan 4 39 $25 94%
PF9 Derrick Favors 4 40 $25 91%
PF10 Tobias Harris 4 45 $21 80%
PF11 Robert Covington 4 54 $19 35%
PF12 Zach Randolph 4 62 $18 94%
PF13 Dirk Nowitzki 4 75 $14 97%
PF14 Kenneth Faried 4 76 $13 83%
PF15 Ersan Ilyasova 4 94 $8 9%
PF16 David West 4 97 $7 66%
PF17 Andrea Bargnani 4 100 $5 29%
PF18 Patrick Patterson 4 110 $3 5%
PF19 Brandon Bass 4 121 $1 15%
PF20 Nene Hilario 4 124 $1 20%
PF21 Pau Gasol 3 136 $1 97%
PF22 Luis Scola 4 140 $1 4%
PF23 Amir Johnson 4 142 $1 15%
PF24 Joe Ingles 4 144 $1 0%
PF25 Tiago Splitter 4 145 $1 1%
PF26 Markieff Morris 3 162 $ – 72%
PF27 Terrence Jones 3 164 $ – 62%
PF28 Tristan Thompson 4 166 $ – 20%
PF29 Amar’e Stoudemire 4 171 $ – 13%
PF30 Trevor Booker 4 174 $ – 1%
PF31 Adreian Payne 4 182 $ – 1%
PF32 Louis Amundson 4 183 $ – 1%
PF33 John Henson 4 185 $ – 6%
PF34 Thomas Robinson 4 189 $ – 2%
PF35 Boris Diaw 4 194 $ – 3%
PF36 Channing Frye 4 195 $ – 4%
PF37 Jason Thompson 4 196 $ – 1%
PF38 Anthony Tolliver 4 197 $ – 0%

Center

My Two Cents:

It’s hard for me to believe that Rudy Gobert is unowned in 39% of ESPN leagues, but if that’s true for your league, please, for the love of everything that is holy, go pick him up. He should get you 45+ rebounds and 12+ blocks this week, which is absurd.

Andrew Bogut’s per-minute numbers have been off the chart this season (12.2 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per 36 minutes), so I have no problem using him this week as a stream option in daily moves leagues; however, I would be nervous to put him in a weekly league. The risk of injury or rest far outweighs the potential reward.

Rank Player Games Overall Rank Overall Value ESPN %
C1 DeMarcus Cousins 4 8 $42 100%
C2 Rudy Gobert 4 16 $35 61%
C3 DeAndre Jordan 4 18 $33 97%
C4 Andre Drummond 4 20 $32 98%
C5 Hassan Whiteside 4 21 $31 79%
C6 Nerlens Noel 4 25 $30 66%
C7 Marc Gasol 4 31 $29 99%
C8 Nikola Vucevic 4 42 $22 96%
C9 Al Jefferson 4 51 $20 97%
C10 Brook Lopez 4 52 $19 82%
C11 Al Horford 4 56 $19 96%
C12 Gorgui Dieng 4 63 $18 46%
C13 Marcin Gortat 4 71 $15 82%
C14 Tyson Chandler 4 86 $10 79%
C15 Andrew Bogut 4 98 $6 27%
C16 Kelly Olynyk 4 105 $4 10%
C17 Roy Hibbert 4 113 $3 55%
C18 Robin Lopez 4 114 $3 37%
C19 Jonas Valanciunas 4 116 $2 71%
C20 Zaza Pachulia 4 134 $1 3%
C21 Omer Asik 4 137 $1 26%
C22 Enes Kanter 4 139 $1 57%
C23 Dewayne Dedmon 4 141 $1 1%
C24 Timofey Mozgov 4 143 $1 36%
C25 Cole Aldrich 4 150 $1 3%
C26 Spencer Hawes 4 157 $ – 3%
C27 Tyler Zeller 4 160 $ – 8%
C28 Nikola Pekovic 4 161 $ – 43%
C29 Joakim Noah 3 165 $ – 91%
C30 Jusuf Nurkic 3 169 $ – 6%
C31 Chris Kaman 4 184 $ – 3%
C32 Ian Mahinmi 4 187 $ – 1%
C33 Bismack Biyombo 4 191 $ – 1%
C34 Steven Adams 4 198 $ – 3%

 

More Rankings (Just for Fun Section)

Because basketball is fun and rankings are also fun, I ranked my four favorite GIFs from last week to share with you all:

4. Apparently Danilo Gallinari is nicknamed the “Rooster”, which makes me like him at least 30% more than I did before. Here is the Rooster going coast to coast:

3. DeAndre Jordan’s 1st career three-pointer. What’s the over/under for his career, 2.5?

2. Doc Rivers’ pregame routine, apparently:

1. Kyle Lowry hip checks Hassan Whiteside:

Also the Top-4 Blocks of the Week

4. RUDY! Extra points for running the floor and finishing on the other end.

3. Jerami Grant from the weak side!

2. The Manimal doesn’t like layups, and this is what he’s doing about it:

1. After this play, Tyler Zeller is going to need a hug: