A Summary of our Fantasy Basketball Dynasty Draft

I’ve been playing fantasy basketball with the same core group of people in a re-draft league since the days of Shawn Marion being a first-round pick, and it never occurred to us to start a dynasty league.

Until now.

We opted for an auction draft, given how unfair snake drafts can be in certain scenarios, with each team getting a $200 budget in a standard nine-category H2H format, since this is how we’ve always played our re-draft league. Each team has to keep at least one rookie on their active roster at all times (just to make things interesting) and we get to keep 10 players at the end of the season.

 I thought it would be fun to document our draft, given this is the first time any of us has taken part in an auction dynasty league (I clearly need to find more exciting things to do with my spare time).

I’ve ranked each team’s draft with a win-now rating, a future outlook rating, and then combined them for an overall rating. There’s also a quick Q&A with each team, to give you a better understanding of everybody's thought process during and after the draft.

Jacob Win Now: 2nd Future: 6th Overall: 1st

PICK PLAYER SPENT
2 Kevin Durant (GS - SF,PF) $68
10 Kyle Lowry (Tor - PG) $46
47 C.J. McCollum (Por - PG,SG) $25
48 Tobias Harris (Det - SF,PF) $10
49 Steven Adams (OKC - C) $9
50 Jeff Teague (Ind - PG) $8
54 Mike Conley (Mem - PG) $9
68 Marc Gasol (Mem - C) $9
79 Dwight Howard (Atl - PF,C) $4
114 Dario Saric (Phi - PF) $3
122 Clint Capela (Hou - PF,C) $1
126 Robin Lopez (Chi - C) $3
140 Jusuf Nurkic (Den - C) $3
  Unused Budget $2

You spent 57% of your salary cap on your first 2 players (Durant at pick 2 for $68 and Lowry at pick 10 for $46). Was your plan always to go strong early?

My plan was to take a strong, easily tradable asset with the bulk of my cap, then sit back and be patient, looking for undervalued guys. I'm happy to have got Durant at around the market rate - after that, though, I came a bit unstuck.

Paying $46 for Lowry was, unfortunately, a case of user error. Whilst rummaging through the cutlery drawer for a bottle opener (opening the customary draft beer), I saw the clock was running down on what I thought was unders for Lowry. I quickly hit bid without noticing that someone had just thrown $45 down on Lowry a split second earlier. So that's how, in an effort to squeeze cash out of whoever wanted him, I ended up paying $46 for Lowry.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on, and why?

I thought Capela for $1 was pretty criminal - he could be a beast in the paint for years to come, even if he's a bad FT shooter!

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

If I could do the draft again, I'd have not drafted Lowry and saved that money to flex in the early middle rounds. A lot of good players went cheaply when people started realising how much cash they were burning early.

Nem Win Now: 1st Future: 8th Overall: 2nd

PICK PLAYER SPENT
4 Stephen Curry (GS - PG,SG) $70
23 Al Horford (Bos - PF,C) $36
32 Gorgui Dieng (Min - PF,C) $15
36 Brook Lopez (Bkn - C) $24
57 D'Angelo Russell (LAL - PG) $20
62 Ricky Rubio (Min - PG) $10
80 Ryan Anderson (Hou - PF,C) $9
83 Goran Dragic (Mia - PG,SG) $6
112 Wesley Matthews (Dal - SG,SF) $6
119 Danny Green (SA - SG,SF) $1
128 Patrick Beverley (Hou - PG,SG) $1
151 Jaylen Brown (Bos - SF) $1
154 Willie Cauley-Stein (Sac - PF,C) $1
  Unused Budget $0

You drafted 3 players under the age of 26 and 8 players 28 and older. How do you plan on refreshing your roster in a dynasty league, that you know will be active for 5+ years, knowing you have to keep 10 players at the end of each season?

My plan is to contend for the title over the next three years with my core group of players. I'll aim to bring in youth via trade or replacing the three guys I drop with the young talent available each year.

You waited until round 12 to draft your rookie and it was potentially somebody who won’t be seeing too many minutes at the start of the season (Brown). Was there a reason why you waited so long?

I wasn't overly concerned about getting a rookie because I want to win now. I've since dropped Brown and picked up Rodriguez as he suits my team build and I won't have to rely on him to win.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

I wouldn't have dropped a bid of $15 on Dieng when it was only at $5. I love him and I'm really happy that he's on my team, but I probably could've got him for $10.

DanielWin Now: 6th Future: 3rd Overall: 3rd

PICK PLAYER SPENT
15 Kawhi Leonard (SA - SG,SF) $68
24 Draymond Green (GS - SF,PF) $36
38 Kevin Love (Cle - PF,C) $19
39 Isaiah Thomas (Bos - PG) $19
42 Nikola Jokic (Den - C) $32
98 Elfrid Payton (Orl - PG) $1
108 Jahlil Okafor (Phi - C) $5
125 Gary Harris (Den - SG) $2
127 Luol Deng (LAL - SF,PF) $1
130 Marcus Smart (Bos - PG) $7
136 Justise Winslow (Mia - SF,PF) $1
144 Ivica Zubac (LAL - C) $1
150 Seth Curry (Dal - PG) $1
  Unused Budget $7

Potential aside (and it’s big), do you have any regrets spending so much on Jokic ($32), given he’s still a relatively unproven player?

I was fairly happy with him at that price. Had him valued at $51, but realistically would have stopped bidding if it hit $40. Am a bit mindful of what happened to Gobert last year, so that's partly the reason why I later added Nurkic as a handcuff and insurance.

You waited until round 12 to draft your rookie and it was potentially somebody who won’t be seeing too many minutes at the start of the season (Zubac). Was there a reason why you waited so long?

I feel historically rookies mostly disappoint in year 1, and generally over their careers so didn't want to spend mute than a dollar on a rookie. Plus, I watched him in two summer league games and he looked really good. He only has Mozgov and Tarik Black ahead of him and Marc Roberts and Josh Lloyd are really high on him. I know he will do nothing this year, but hopefully next season he will be huge in blocks for my team.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

Not have my internet drop out and bid an extra few dollars for Mudiay, considering I had him in my queue and automatically nominated him. That was just as my internet cut out. I was fairly high on him this year. Good luck to Paul for grabbing him for $2!

Paul Win Now: 3rd Future: 7th Overall: 4th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
1 James Harden (Hou - PG,SG,SF) $60
17 John Wall (Was - PG) $50
33 Eric Bledsoe (Pho - PG,SG) $36
45 Jeremy Lin (Bkn - PG,SG) $10
66 Chris Bosh (Mia - PF,C) $5
72 Rudy Gay (Sac - SF,PF) $5
74 Monta Ellis (Ind - PG,SG) $7
87 Nikola Mirotic (Chi - SF,PF) $8
93 Dragan Bender (Pho - PF) $4
105 Markieff Morris (Was - PF,C) $1
113 Bismack Biyombo (Orl - PF,C) $2
115 Deron Williams (Dal - PG) $1
118 Emmanuel Mudiay (Den - PG) $2
  Unused Budget $9

You spent 73% of your budget on your first 3 players. Was your plan always to go strong early?

I didn't plan to go that strong, but players were going a lot cheaper in the early rounds than I anticipated. It balanced out with players going for more in the middle rounds, but it was hard to plan for.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on, and why?

Pretty happy with Gay for $5. If he gets traded to the right team it could mean bigger numbers for him.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

I wouldn't have drafted Bosh.

Jason Win Now: 9th Future: 1st Overall: 5th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
8 Karl-Anthony Towns (Min - C) $73
27 Kristaps Porzingis (NY - PF,C) $55
59 Buddy Hield (NO - SG) $9
77 Brandon Knight (Pho - PG,SG) $9
84 George Hill (Uta - PG,SG) $5
92 Kent Bazemore (Atl - SG,SF) $6
95 Thaddeus Young (Ind - SF,PF) $5
102 Joel Embiid (Phi - C) $5
104 Harrison Barnes (Dal - SF,PF) $3
111 Evan Fournier (Orl - SG,SF) $13
124 Alex Len (Pho - PF,C) $5
131 Kyle Korver (Atl - SG,SF) $3
133 Derrick Rose (NY - PG) $1
  Unused Budget $8

You spent 64% of your budget on your first two players (Towns and Porzingis). Was your plan always to build your team around two young players?

The plan was definitely to build around those two, and hoped I'd get Embiid for a steal and have my big men sorted for the next 10 years. As for spending, I reckon I would've spent 100% on KAT, but then maybe paid a bit over on Porzingis, so it balanced out.

ou drafted 4 players 28 years or older on a roster which looks to be built on youth (8 players 24 years or younger). What was your reasoning behind drafting a few older players?

If my young bucks can dominate this year, having some of those older guys could be a nice balance. Especially if my high risk/reward pick of Rose comes off.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

I regret spending a combined $8 for George Hill and Korver.

Cam Win Now: 7th Future: 4th Overall: 6th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
11 Paul Millsap (Atl - PF,C) $31
16 Damian Lillard (Por - PG) $56
43 Dirk Nowitzki (Dal - PF,C) $11
46 Otto Porter (Was - SF) $9
51 Victor Oladipo (OKC - PG,SG) $27
58 Nerlens Noel (Phi - PF,C) $9
63 Brandon Ingram (LAL - SF) $8
65 Rajon Rondo (Chi - PG) $8
70 Aaron Gordon (Orl - SF,PF) $7
81 Robert Covington (Phi - SF,PF) $5
86 Zach LaVine (Min - PG,SG) $9
94 Kenneth Faried (Den - PF,C) $3
96 Danilo Gallinari (Den - SF) $4
  Unused Budget $13

Two of your first three drafted players are 31 years and older. What was your thinking behind drafting older players early, and was is something you had always planned to do?

I’d be lying if I said drafting veterans early was something I planned to do. Like most of us I’m guessing, I was dreaming of landing a Towns, Greek Freak or Kawhi early on. Obviously, in a Dynasty format it’s guys like these, who can contribute at a high level right away and for years to come that are most coveted. But heading into the draft I set my Dynasty dollar values for each player and tried my best early on to stick to them. This meant that I missed out on a few young guns in the early going. The first player I really felt was being undervalued, perhaps due to an age bias was the perennial fantasy-monster Paul Millsap, so I pulled the trigger at $31. After grabbing Lillard with my next selection, I was comfortable taking Dirk Nowitzki third. My strategy heading into the draft was to get a good blend of guys who are pre-peak, in their peak, or post-peak to ensure I can compete from day one and remain relevant in the coming years. Dirk obviously fits into ‘post-peak’, and I think he brings my roster some win-now capability that can be hard to find for just $11.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on, and why?

It’s gotta be between Victor Oladipo at $27 and Aaron Gordon at $7. Oladipo was 9th overall in Fantasy after the All-Star break last year, he’s going into his age-24 season and tasked with helping fill the scoring and creating void left by KD’s departure. Sign me up. I’d have gone a heck of a lot higher than $27.

Aaron Gordon is my guy. I’m definitely an Orlando homer, but the kid’s gonna be a gun. He’s entering his 3rd NBA season and only turned 21 in September. There’s so much growth and development to come and he’s already a physical freak. 

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

If I could do it over, I’d spend all of my budget! I finished up with $13 in the bank. It’s tricky, by the time I was down to my last spot to fill, I had about $17 in hand and nobody left was worth that sort of money. 

Joey Win Now: 11th Future: 2nd Overall: 7th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
30 Kris Dunn (Min - PG) $5
34 Ben Simmons (Phi - SF,PF) $19
35 Reggie Jackson (Det - PG,SG) $18
37 DeMar DeRozan (Tor - SG,SF) $13
55 Andrew Wiggins (Min - SG,SF) $16
56 Gordon Hayward (Uta - SG,SF) $28
61 Jabari Parker (Mil - SF,PF) $5
73 Myles Turner (Ind - PF,C) $22
76 Nicolas Batum (Cha - SG,SF) $15
82 Enes Kanter (OKC - C) $10
85 Devin Booker (Pho - SG) $11
90 Rodney Hood (Uta - SG,SF) $5
97 Jordan Clarkson (LAL - PG,SG) $15
  Unused Budget $18

You were the only team who didn't spend big on one player. Was this something you had planned?

My plan was to wait and see how much money was going to be thrown around for the first five picks. I wasn't keen on the idea of spending $60+ on one player, and I wasn't going to compete without a top 30 player, so I decided to sit tight and wait until everybody started running out of money before I started bidding on young players, in an attempt to build a team for the future. Knowing how much everybody enjoys trading, I decided to only draft players who I know I can trade at some point this season.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on and why?

Simmons for $19 given our rule of needing at least one active rookie (our draft was before his injury). Wiggins for $16 was also a bargain, who I managed to got so cheap because people started running out of money.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

I wasn't expecting young players to fall so cheaply, so in hindsight I should have chased a $50 player and picked off a few $2 players at the end of the draft.

Luke Win Now: 8th Future: 5th Overall: 8th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
6 Giannis Antetokounmpo (Mil - PG,SG,SF) $70
13 Jonas Valanciunas (Tor - C) $27
28 Kemba Walker (Cha - PG) $36
41 Andre Drummond (Det - PF,C) $19
64 DeAndre Jordan (LAC - C) $10
67 Nikola Vucevic (Orl - PF,C) $9
78 Marquese Chriss (Pho - PF) $2
99 Chandler Parsons (Mem - SF,PF) $9
100 Bradley Beal (Was - SG) $7
101 Darren Collison (Sac - PG) $7
107 Tyreke Evans (NO - PG,SG) $2
121 Bojan Bogdanovic (Bkn - SG,SF) $1
146 Stanley Johnson (Det - SG,SF) $1
  Unused Budget $0

Your first four draft picks were Giannis, Jonas, Kemba and Drummond (followed by Jordan). What made you decide to build a punt FT team after drafting 3 quality FT% shooters?

Getting good players like Drummond and Jordan for cheap prices were too good not to take, Giannis isn't a very good FT shooter either, so didn't really matter.

What was your reason(s) for drafting players you knew wouldn’t be starting the season (Collison and Evans) and players with an injury history (Beal and Parsons)?

I didn't expect Collison to miss much time, and Evans can be a solid contributor once he comes back from injury, so drafting someone like that isn't as bad in the long run.

Adrian Win Now: 4th Future: 10th Overall: 9th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
21 Paul George (Ind - SF,PF) $57
22 Hassan Whiteside (Mia - C) $43
29 Kyrie Irving (Cle - PG,SG) $35
40 Khris Middleton (Mil - SG,SF) $21
53 Pau Gasol (SA - PF,C) $9
69 Jrue Holiday (NO - PG) $13
91 DeMarre Carroll (Tor - SF,PF) $1
103 Julius Randle (LAL - PF) $7
110 Jae Crowder (Bos - SF,PF) $6
132 Zach Randolph (Mem - PF,C) $1
139 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (Det - SG) $4
141 Mason Plumlee (Por - PF,C) $2
147 Al Jefferson (Ind - PF,C) $1
  Unused Budget $0

You spent 78% of your salary cap on your first four players. Was your plan always to go strong early?

I thought it was really important to try and secure at least two top 20 players without blowing the bank too much. I've never been part of a dynasty draft before, so I was quite under-prepared and there were a lot of unknowns regarding player values. I was quite comfortable with my first four picks, however, in hindsight I didn't think Whiteside suited my team.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on and why?

I don't particularly think I got any bargains. I'm curious to see whether Kyrie can continue on from his playoff finals form and if so he could prove to be a bargain at $35.

You drafted two players (P. Gasol and Randolph) over the age of 35 in a league that will likely be running for 5+ years. If you had your time again, would you still draft them?

This was really poor drafting from me, and in hindsight I wouldn't draft them again. Maybe one of them, but definitely not two guys over 35.

Billy Win Now: 5th Future: 11th Overall: 10th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
5 Chris Paul (LAC - PG) $50
7 LeBron James (Cle - SF,PF) $43
9 Russell Westbrook (OKC - PG) $75
52 Jamal Murray (Den - SG) $7
71 Rudy Gobert (Uta - C) $14
106 Jared Sullinger (Tor - PF,C) $1
116 Al-Farouq Aminu (Por - SF,PF) $1
123 Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (Bkn - SG,SF) $3
134 Joakim Noah (NY - PF,C) $1
142 Amir Johnson (Bos - PF,C) $1
145 Terrence Jones (NO - SF,PF) $2
148 Jerryd Bayless (Phi - PG,SG) $1
152 Tristan Thompson (Cle - PF,C) $1
  Unused Budget $1

You spent 84% of your budget on your first 3 players, who were also 3 of the first 10 nominated players to draft. Was your plan always to to go strong early?

Yes.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on, and why?

Gobert at $17 - he's easily an early round pick.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

Probably the fact that my 2 oldest players on my roster cost $93. I had to go hard on Jamal Murray as well.

Adam Win Now: 10th Future: 9th Overall: 11th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
12 Anthony Davis (NO - PF,C) $71
20 Derrick Favors (Uta - PF,C) $35
26 LaMarcus Aldridge (SA - PF,C) $22
31 Klay Thompson (GS - SG,SF) $22
44 Dennis Schroder (Atl - PG) $11
75 Trevor Ariza (Hou - SG,SF) $9
88 Greg Monroe (Mil - PF,C) $6
109 Evan Turner (Por - SG,SF) $4
117 Avery Bradley (Bos - PG,SG) $4
120 J.J. Redick (LAC - SG) $4
129 Denzel Valentine (Chi - SF) $1
137 Cody Zeller (Cha - PF,C) $2
138 Will Barton (Den - SG,SF) $5
  Unused Budget $4

You drafted 4 of the first 31 players nominated, using 75% of your salary cap. Was your plan always to spend big early?

No.

Which player do you feel you got your biggest bargain on, and why?

JJ Redick, $4 for elite 3s is a bargain.

If there’s one thing you could change about your draft, what would it be?

I would have drafted more guards.

Alex Win Now: 12th Future: 12th Overall: 12th

PICK PLAYER SPENT
3 DeMarcus Cousins (Sac - PF,C) $51
14 Jimmy Butler (Chi - SG,SF) $41
18 Blake Griffin (LAC - PF,C) $31
19 Carmelo Anthony (NY - SF,PF) $33
25 Serge Ibaka (Orl - PF,C) $29
60 Marcin Gortat (Was - C) $5
89 Dwyane Wade (Chi - PG,SG) $4
135 Michael Carter-Williams (Mil - PG) $1
143 Tony Parker (SA - PG) $1
149 Eric Gordon (Hou - SG) $1
153 J.R. Smith (Cle - SG,SF) $1
155 Andrew Bogut (Dal - C) $1
156 Wilson Chandler (Den - SG,SF) $1
  Unused Budget $0

Alex had to leave the draft early after drafting Butler.


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