It is a sad occasion as we come to the end of this series of fantasy basketball articles. To be honest, I shed a tear, I know you'll shed a tear, heck even my rankings are in tiers.
Thanks to everyone who has taken the time to read and debate them with me on twitter. I hope these positional tiers have helped you in your draft planning and preparation. Good luck for the season!
This season to secure a quality big man, you will need to draft them very early on in drafts. That may sound like some obvious advice, but the talent pool drains away quickly so you don't want to be stuck relying on a couple of the late round options.
To prevent confusion, the players in my tiers are listed in the position which they appear in Rotowire's depth charts. Underneath each tier you will find a paragraph with my thoughts and comments on those particular players.
For all your fantasy basketball needs you can follow me on twitter SmanSports.
- Rudy GobertUtah Jazz
- DeAndre JordanLos Angeles Clippers
- Andre DrummondDetroit Pistons
- Marc GasolMemphis Grizzlies
- Al HorfordAtlanta Hawks
Rudy Gobert is the best fantasy centre in the game (assuming we define Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins power forwards). After the All-star break Gobert, was third in total rebounds and equal first in total blocks (with Anthony Davis). Amazingly, Gobert blocked eight more shots over the course of the season than DeAndre Jordan, despite playing eight less minutes per game!
I see no plausible reason to draft DeAndre Jordan or Andre Drummond before Gobert. Gobert will keep you towards the top of the standings in field goal percentage, rebounds and blocks, but not completely destroy your free throw percentage like Jordan and Drummond. Last season Gobert shot 62 percent from the line and at EuroBasket this offseason he went at 66 percent. That's definitely something you can build upon by drafting the right players around him. Given the scarcity of players who can give you advantages in field goal percentage, rebounds and blocks, yet not slaughter your free throw percentage, I wouldn't hesitate to draft Gobert at pick 10-12 in any league.
DeAndre Jordan does everything slightly better than Andre Drummond, including killing your free throw percentage. Expect a big year from Drummond with Greg Monroe in Milwaukee. Do not draft Jordan and/or Drummond in rotisserie leagues if you want to win.
Marc Gasol is the most complete centre in the game. His efficiency is spot on, he scores enough points, blocks enough shots, hardly turns the ball over and throws in 3-4 assists per game. Another rebound or two per game would be icing, but he is a lock as a top 25 player.
Al Horford's output is very similar to Gasol. His field goal percentage is slightly better, but he isn't as good from the free throw line nor does he block as many shots as Gasol. A slight increase in points and rebounds isn't out of the question with DeMarre Carroll now in Toronto.
- Brook LopezBrooklyn Nets
- Nikola VucevicOrlando Magic
- Greg MonroeMilwaukee Bucks
Brook Lopez was one of the best fantasy players in the game for a stretch last season. His post All-star numbers were off the charts at nearly 20 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks at 52 percent from the field and 81 percent from the free throw line. The ongoing question is can Lopez stay healthy? Whether to draft him or not is up to each individual owner as Lopez is the ultimate 'high risk/high reward' player.
Nikola Vucevic is one of the more underrated centres in the league. He is super-efficient and if he can ever get to a steal and block per game he would jump into the top tier.
Greg Monroe joins Milwaukee where he will instantly be one of the Bucks' main offensive threats and leading rebounder. This bodes well for his fantasy value and if he can increase his blocks per game and maintain his steals level, Monroe will be a top 40 player this season.
- Hassan WhitesideMiami Heat
- Dwight HowardHouston Rockets
- Al JeffersonCharlotte Hornets
Hassan Whiteside came from the wilderness last season to average 13.7 points, 11.7 rebounds and 2.8 blocks whilst shooting 61 percent from the field after the All-star break. The jury is out as to whether he can produce over a full NBA season, so he comes with some risk inside the top 50.
Dwight Howard is not the player we used to know. Gone are the days where you can build a dominate rebounds and blocks team around him. Pair him with Jordan or Drummond, otherwise leave him alone.
Al Jefferson had a very disappointing 2014-15 campaign with a decline in all categories except blocks. Apparently he's lost 20 pounds over the summer, but that's not enough to convince me to draft him inside the top 40 on draft day.
- Jonas ValanciunasToronto Raptors
- Marcin GortatWashington Wizards
- Tyson ChandlerPhoenix Suns
- Tim DuncanSan Antonio Spurs
- Karl-Anthony TownsMinnesota Timberwolves
Jonas Valanciunas could be one of the game's best fantasy big men, if only he could see 30+ minutes per game. He has the points, rebounds and blocks to go with supreme efficiency, and when his breakout season comes, you will be kicking yourself if you miss out.
Marcin Gortat was a dominate force down the stretch last season, which should continue into this season with no other inside scoring and rebounding option on the Wizards roster. He is a great mid-round option to compliment a tier 1 or 2 big man.
Tyson Chandler moves to Phoenix where he will start are should see 30+ minutes per game. The Suns will rely heavily on him to grab as many rebounds as possible and he'll be a great pick and roll option for Eric Bledsoe on offence. Gortat and Chandler are also two of the best mid-round options if your field goal percentage needs a boost.
Tim Duncan can now take a back seat to LaMarcus Aldridge and Kawhi Leonard. A slight dip in playing time and production should be expected, but Duncan will still be a solid contributor to any team.
As with most rookies, patience will be required for any owner who drafts Karl-Anthony Towns. Expect a slow start for the number one draft pick, but once we hit the final couple of months of the season, Towns could be putting up top 60 value.
- Robin LopezNew York Knicks
- Jusuf NurkicDenver Nuggets
- Roy HibbertLos Angeles Lakers
- Zaza PachuliaDallas Mavericks
Robin Lopez should see a bounce back season as he joins the Knicks. If he can average 10 points, eight rebounds, 1.5 blocks with his usual brilliant efficiency then he'll be a guy you start and rely upon every game.
Jusuf Nurkic is on a number of 'sleeper' lists and rightly so considering some of the big lines he was able to put up last season. Nurkic is still rehabilitating after need surgery in May, so will have a delayed start to the season. He should still be a target in the latter rounds, just temper expectations as owners will need to be invested for the long haul with Nurkic.
Roy Hibbert finds himself in LA with the centre position all to himself. It is hard to see how he will get shots with Kobe Bryant, Jordan Clarkson and D'Angelo Russell on the court. Hibbert will grab some boards and block some shots, but will be largely underwhelming again this season.
So, Zaza Pachulia is kind of back in fashion now. A decade after starting for the Hawks, Pachulia will start for the Mavericks in a thin frontcourt. He brings job security and handy rebounds and steals to your team.
- Mason Plumlee Portland Trail Blazers
- Jahlil Okafor Philadelphia 76ers
- Steven Adams Oklahoma City Thunder
- Timofey Mozgov Cleveland Cavaliers
- Amir Johnson Boston Celtics
- Joakim Noah Chicago Bulls
- Andrew Bogut Golden State Warriors
- Omer Asik New Orleans Pelicans
- Ian MahinmiIndiana Pacers
Steven Adams would have been a valuable member of many championship winning teams last season. He averaged 9.5 points, 10.2 rebounds, 1.2 blocks, 0.9 steals and shot 55 percent from the field during March. Kevin Durant and Serge Ibaka are obviously back and will eat into Adams's playing time and stats, but don't completely disregard him this season.
Jahlil Okafor will be a popular pick for the uninitiated, but he will only be a two category contributor - points and rebounds. Not only that, but his field goal percentage will be below par and his free throw percentage will make Dwight Howard look good. Avoid temptation.
Timofey Mozgov is another unassuming big. He won't play heavy minutes for the Cavs, although it would help if Tristan Thompson signed elsewhere. Mozgov will start at centre and only has the oft-injured Anderson Varejao behind him. Mozgov can provide tremendous efficiency and occasional blocks.
Amir Johnson is in a deep Boston front court and it will be fascinating to see how their rotation plays out during training camp. If Johnson can find some minutes he'll offer owners some points and rebounds, and can flirt with a steal and block per game. A large chunk of his value also comes from his supreme field goal percentage.
After a terrible season, the future doesn't look too bright for Joakim Noah. He could find himself coming off the bench and have his playing time decrease to below 30 minutes per game for the first time since his sophomore season.
Andrew Bogut is a player who could get your team off to a quick start in the first month of the season. He'll provide boards and blocks and very good field goal percentage. You know that an injury is just around the corner though, so always have a backup plan in place if you own the big Aussie.
Remember opening night last season when Omer Asik had 14 points, 17 rebounds and 5 blocks? After that he was about as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike. Use Asik as a streaming options when you need rebounds.
The fact that Ian Mahinmi is in the shuffle to start in Indiana tells us how weak their front court really is. In 367 regular season games, he has only ever had three double-doubles so there is very little value here.
Sleeper alert: Mason Plumlee finds a home in Portland and if he can find the playing time in a very deep front court, Plumlee should have some value. He is a very good rebounder, can offer close to a steal and block per game and provide a huge boost to your field goal percentage. Beware that Plumlee is an awful free throw shooter, so plan accordingly.
P.s. don’t accidently draft his older brother Miles instead.