Jokic is No. 1 in Early Top-150 for 2021-22

Jokic is No. 1 in Early Top-150 for 2021-22

This article is part of our Player Rankings series.

The NBA postseason is in full swing with all four second-round series underway as of Tuesday night. While most fantasy managers have turned to playoff pools or DFS contests since the regular season ended, it's never too early to begin preparing for next season. With that in mind, we've spent the last few days preparing our initial batch of fantasy rankings for 2021-22, when the league is (hopefully) back to a normal, 82-game schedule.

Of course, at this point in the NBA calendar, there are still some major checkpoints we've yet to hit. The NBA Draft – set for Thursday, July 29 – and free agency are chief among them. Free agency, in particular, promises to carry some significant fantasy implications, so we'll update our rankings accordingly when the time comes.

A few notes before we get into the rankings:

  • The 2020-21 fantasy season is over, so any references to rankings or stats refer to a players' end-of-regular-season figures (unless otherwise specified)
  • We're looking ahead, so "last season" refers to 2020-21
  • Most injured players are presumed to be healthy to begin next season, though the rankings account for those with longer-term injuries (Jamal Murray, for instance)
  • Rankings are based on eight-category roto leagues (PTS, REB, AST, STL, BLK, FG%, FT%, 3PM)
  • A handful of 2021-22 rookies are included, and the rankings will be updated to reflect their projected value following the NBA Draft

    

RKPLAYERTEAMPOS 
1Nikola JokicDENCThe No. 1 overall player by a mile in 2020-21, Jokic's unique skillset and durability keep him at the top of the list.
2Stephen CurryGSWGComing off of a lost season, Curry stayed healthy and proved he's still the most lethal offensive force in the game.
3Kevin DurantBROFMissed games could again be an issue, but Durant looked like his peak self when on the floor in 2020-21.
4Damian LillardPORGLillard finished sixth in per-game value, but his durability gives him a higher floor than several of his peers.
5Joel EmbiidPHICHealth will always be a concern, but Embiid may have been on his way to an MVP season before missing 13 games in March and April.
6James HardenBROGHarden took a step back as a scorer after joining the Nets, but he's still an assists machine who should be much healthier in 2021-22.
7Giannis AntetokounmpoMILFIf not for his still-shaky free throw shooting, the two-time MVP would be in contention for the No. 1 overall pick.
8Karl-Anthony TownsMINCAn ironman through his first four NBA seasons, Towns' recent health issues have dinged his fantasy stock a bit.
9Anthony DavisLALF/CDavis was one of the biggest letdowns in all of fantasy basketball in 2020-21, but he's too talented and well-rounded not to bounce back.
10Luka DoncicDALGDoncic is a counting-stat machine, but as a high-volume free throw shooter, his percentage (career 73.5%) brings down his fantasy value.
11Kawhi LeonardLACFLeonard has been a top-10 player on a per-game basis in five of the last six years, but missed games are an expectation at this point.
12Bradley BealWASGA 30-point-per-game scorer in back-to-back seasons, Beal is one of the league's elite contributors in points and free throw percentage.
13Jayson TatumBOSFOnly 23 years old, Tatum posted career highs in points, rebounds, assists, field goal percentage and free throw percentage in 2020-21.
14LeBron JamesLALG/FAt some point, father time is going to come for James, but before his ankle injury he was in the midst of yet another MVP-caliber campaign at age 36.
15Kyrie IrvingBROGImprobably, Irving was the healthiest of the Nets' Big 3 in 2020-21. Missed time remains a concern, but Irving's upside is immense.
16Zach LaVineCHIGLaVine flipped the narrative with easily the best – and most efficient – season of his career in 2020-21.
17Domantas SabonisINDFSabonis made a major leap in 2020-21, averaging 6.7 assists and showing tangible improvement as a three-point threat.
18Trae YoungATLGYoung only hit 2.2 threes per game in 2020-21, but he remained an elite points/assists/FT% contributor.
19Paul GeorgeLACFGeorge has taken a lot of heat for the Clippers' shortcomings, but he quietly posted the highest true shooting percentage of his career in 2020-21.
20Jimmy ButlerMIAFMiami's Round 1 flame-out marred an otherwise career year for the 31-year-old.
21Nikola VucevicCHICVucevic's scoring took a slight dip after he arrived in Chicago, but he's been one of the most consistent big men in fantasy basketball over the last half-decade.
22Shai Gilgeous-AlexanderOKCGHe missed more than half of the season, but SGA averaged 23.7 points on 51-42-81 shooting in 35 appearances.
23Michael Porter Jr.DENFPorter Jr. has his flaws, but he was a top-20 fantasy asset after Jamal Murray, who will likely miss most of next season, went down. 
24Bam AdebayoMIAF/CHe doesn't shoot threes, but Adebayo is an excellent all-around big who shot 80% at the line last season – up from 69% in 2019-20.
25LaMelo BallCHAGAs a 19-year-old, Ball averaged 15.7 points, 6.1 assists, 5.9 rebounds, 1.8 threes and 1.6 steals in just 28.8 minutes per game.
26Fred VanVleetTORGWith Kyle Lowry perhaps moving on, VanVleet should step up as the true lead guard for the Raptors.
27Julius RandleNYKFRandle's durability helped make him a top-10 player in 2020-21, but he ranked outside the top 25 in per-game value.
28Russell WestbrookWASGFlawed as his game may be, Westbrook still piles up assists, rebounds and even steals at a rate unlike any other player in the league.
29Myles TurnerINDCTurner led the league in blocks per game for the second time in three years, but the rest of his stat profile is mostly average.
30Khris MiddletonMILFOne of the steadiest players in fantasy basketball, Middleton rarely misses time and holds a 47-39-88 shooting line over the last four seasons.
31Rudy GobertUTACThe Frenchman has averaged a double-double with at least 2.0 blocks in each of the last five seasons, but he's shooting 64.3% at the line during that stretch.
32Zion WilliamsonNORFWilliamson was the single most valuable FG% contributor in 2020-21 (by a wide margin), but his sub-70% free throw shooting was a massive drag on his value.
33Jaylen BrownBOSG/FComing off of a career year, expectations will be high for both Brown and Jayson Tatum.
34Jrue HolidayMILGIt took some time, but once Holiday settled in with the Bucks, he turned in the most efficient season of his NBA career.
35Donovan MitchellUTAGHe only shot 43.8% from the field, but Mitchell set career-bests in points, assists, free throws, and three-pointers per game.
36De'Aaron FoxSACGFox's free throw percentage (71.9%) is all that stood between him and a top-30 overall season.
37Christian WoodHOUF/CWood was as good as advertised in an increased role, but he missed 31 of a possible 72 games.
38Brandon IngramNORFIngram's 2020-21 numbers were virtually identical to his 2019-20 breakout, which isn't a bad thing.
39Devin BookerPHOGAs expected, Chris Paul cut into Booker's assists, but the rest of his numbers remained about the same. If Paul moves on, Booker's upside increases.
40Pascal SiakamTORFSiakam is still an excellent early-mid-round option, but his upside may not be as high as it seemed a couple years ago.
41Chris PaulPHOGInjuries have dogged Paul for most of his career, but he's managed to miss only four total games over the last two seasons.
42Clint CapelaATLCIn his first year with the Hawks, Capela picked up where he left off and led the league in rebounding at 14.3 per game.
43Tobias HarrisPHIFHe doesn't offer much on defense, but Harris was extremely close to joining the 50-40-90 club in 2020-21.
44John CollinsATLFCollins is coming off of a strange season in which he regressed in virtually every category – including minutes per game (29.3 MPG). His upside may be higher if he signs elsewhere as a restricted free agent.
45Lonzo BallNORGBall continues to be a difficult evaluation, but his improvement as a three-point shooter looks to be sustainable.
46Draymond GreenGSWFWhile Green's scoring touch will probably never return, he proved he's still capable of elite out-of-position assists (career-high 8.9 APG).
47Ben SimmonsPHIGComing off the worst fantasy season of his career during which he set lows in points, rebounds and assists per game.
48Deandre AytonPHOCRegressed during the regular season but an impressive playoff run could shoot him back up draft boards.
49Ja MorantMEMGRanked outside the top-130 (per-game value) after the All-Star break, but it feels like he's on the verge of breaking out after an impressive end to the season.
50OG AnunobyTORFPlayed well with an increased role, but can he be more than just a three-point shooter on offense?
51CJ McCollumPORGHasn't finished lower than 64th on a per-game basis since his second year in the league.
52Jonas ValanciunasMEMCHe's put together two top-55 seasons in a row and didn't slow down when Jaren Jackson Jr. returned from injury.
53Gordon HaywardCHAFInjuries continue to destroy Hayward's fantasy stock. He hasn't finished higher than 97th in total value since his last season in Utah, but his per-game value is much higher.
54Malcolm BrogdonINDGComing off his best statistical season but might not have any more room to grow.
55Dejounte MurraySANGEntering his fifth season, Murray looks poised for a true breakout campaign – especially if DeMar DeRozan moves on.
56Kyle LowryTORGGot his numbers again in 2020-21, but he'll turn 36 before the end of next season.
57Terry RozierCHAGEmerged as the Hornets' other lead guard over Devonte' Graham. Rozier set career-highs in points, assists, steals and field-goal percentage last season.
58Jerami GrantDETFBroke out as the No. 1 option on an awful Pistons team, but his second-half production didn't match his red-hot start.
59Tyrese HaliburtonSACGNot many rookie guards are capable of averaging 13.0 points, 5.3 assists, 2.1 threes and 1.3 steals with a 47-41-86 shooting line.
60DeMar DeRozanSANGHas been a top-55 player from 2015-16 onward, but will the free-agent-to-be find a reduced role on a different team?
61Caris LeVertINDGComing off a career-best season and should remain a focal point of Indiana's offense with health issues seemingly behind him.
62Chris BoucherTORF/CRanked inside the top 70 in per-game value in just 24.2 minutes. If he can see 30+ minutes regularly, he'll crush that number.
63Jusuf NurkicPORCDealt with injuries and split time with Enes Kanter, when healthy. Will be a tough draft-day decision since he's shown top-30 upside in the past.
64Kristaps PorzingisDALF/CHealth and dwindling role are concerns, but Porzingis can play like a top-30 fantasy player when 100% engaged.
65Richaun HolmesSACCOnce again established himself as a top-60 fantasy player.
66Bogdan BogdanovicATLGComing off the best season of his career and his first top-100 finish. Bogdanovic was a top-35 player post-All-Star-break.
67Mike ConleyUTAGHad a bounceback season following a disastrous first year in Utah. Ranked 58th on a per-game basis.
68Kemba WalkerBOSGRest days will likely continue, which caps his upside. Ranked 57th and 117th, respectively, in total value through his first two years in Boston.
69Klay ThompsonGSWGMay not be ready for the start of 2021-22 and is coming off a torn Achilles and a torn ACL. Thompson hasn't played since the 2019 playoffs.
70Mikal BridgesPHOG/FSaw an increased offensive role and delivered, ranking 70th overall on a per-game basis.
71Robert WilliamsBOSCProjects as the center of the future for Boston. Needed only 18.9 minutes per game to rank 90th in fantasy on a per-game basis.
72Jaren JacksonMEMF/CPlayed only 11 games after a longer-than-expected meniscus surgery recovery. Ranked 65th in per game value as a sophomore, but injuries and poor rebounding are a concern.
73Robert CovingtonPORFSaw a reduced offensive role with Portland and averaged 8.5 PPG – his lowest mark since his rookie year.
74Collin SextonCLEGHas improved in each of his first three seasons and averaged 24-and-4 last year on 48/37/82 shooting.
75De'Andre HunterATLFStarted off hot before a knee injury essentially ended his fantasy season. Averaged 18/6/2 pre-injury on 52/38/88 shooting.
76Darius GarlandCLEGMade significant strides as a sophomore and ranked 82nd on a per-game basis. However, sharing the backcourt with Collin Sexton caps his upside.
77Kevin PorterHOUGCould be a focal point of the Rockets' rebuild. Averaged 17-6-4 and had a 50-point, 11-assist game.
78Norman PowellPORG/FHas finished in the top-80 in each of the past two seasons but doesn't do much other than score.
79Buddy HieldSACGBecame even more of a pure three-point shooter, launching 10.2 attempts from deep per game in 2020-21. Ranked 77th in per-game value.
80P.J. WashingtonCHAFMade minor improvements last season and mostly projects as a three-and-D forward
81Jarrett AllenCLECAveraged 13-and-10 with 1.4 blocks on 61% shooting after joining the Cavs. His offense is heavily dependent on the playmakers around him.
82D'Angelo RussellMINGContinues to struggle with injuries, as well as consistency, and relies heavily on jumpshooting. Doesn't seem to be making any real strides.
83Kyle AndersonMEMFComing off the best season of his career. Ranked 78th on a per-game basis, fueled by improved three-point shooting.
84Anthony EdwardsMINGStarted off slowly but turned a corner in mid-March. In his final 32 games, Edwards put up 23.3 points on 18.4 shots, 5.4 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.4 steals.
85Mitchell RobinsonNYKCThe Knicks were a much better team, but Robinson's stats took a step back. He still ranked 105th in per game value, however.
86Larry NanceCLEF/CPlaying time is dependent on Kevin Love's health. Could easily be a top-100 player if he can see near 30 minutes per game.
87Harrison BarnesSACFTook an unexpected step forward as a 28-year-old. Ranked 88th on a per-game basis and shouldn't see a massive role change unless Marvin Bagley makes a major leap.
88RJ BarrettNYKG/FImproved as a sophomore, notably turning into a 40 percent three-point shooter. However, it's unclear if he can be more than a secondary playmaker.
89Andrew WigginsGSWG/FShot career-bests from the field (47.7%) and from three (38.0%) but still struggles from the free-throw line and doesn't pass.
90Miles BridgesCHAFTurned into one of the league's premier lob threats from LaMelo Ball's passing. Averaged 12.7 PPG on 50/40/87 shooting, aided by Gordon Hayward's injury.
91Jordan ClarksonUTAGAveraged 18.4 points on 42/35/90 shooting on his way to the Sixth Man of the Year award.
92Kelly OlynykHOUF/C2020-21 marked the best season of his career, and he was a waiver wire hero after being dealt to Houston. Ranked inside the top 25 after the All-Star break.
93Cade CunninghamROOKGProjecting rookies is a dangerous game – especially when we don't even know which team they're on – but Cunningham will have a great chance to be a top-100 guy right away.
94Nerlens NoelNYKCWas a top-100 player for the second year in a row. One of the best per-minute shot-blockers in the league.
95Marcus SmartBOSGCan put up numbers as a secondary guard but still struggles with efficiency and shot selection.
96T.J. McConnellINDGHad a career year while Indiana dealt with injuries. Finished an impressive 67th overall in per-game value, but his role will diminish with a healthier roster.
97Delon WrightSACGRanked 89th per game due to increased roles in Detroit and Sacramento. Will probably see a minutes reduction with De'Aaron Fox healthy.
98Andre DrummondLALCDrummond's reign as a walking 15-and-15 player may come to an end with a new team, as he struggled to play effectively with the Lakers when it mattered most.
99Evan FournierBOSG/FHasn't ranked lower than 129th on a per-game basis from 2015-16 onward, topping out at 63rd last season. Could play for a new team next season, so he's a wait-and-see.
100John WallHOUGPlayed only 40 games due to injury and struggled even when healthy.
101Dennis SchroderLALGRanked in the top-100 for the second season in a row, but his future in Los Angeles is up in the air.
102Dillon BrooksMEMG/FWasn't especially efficient but still managed 17.2 PPG. Had a mini-breakout in the playoffs, which should bump him up draft boards.
103Malik BeasleyMINGInjuries and suspension led to Beasley playing just 37 games, but he had a career year and scored 19.6 points with 3.5 threes per game.
104Thaddeus YoungCHIFAveraged a career-high 4.3 assists per game and shot a career-high 55.9 percent from the field last season. 
105Josh HartNORFGrabbed a career-high 8.0 rebounds per game but still struggles to score consistently and efficiently.
106Saddiq BeyDETFHit the ground running as a rookie and hit 2.5 threes per game.
107Brook LopezMILCSaw decreases in assists, blocks and threes per game last season, which bumped him out of the top-100.
108Derrick WhiteSANGDealt with injuries but still had a career year, averaging 15/4/3.
109Derrick RoseNYKGFinished out the year strong with the Knicks but injuries will always be a concern.
110Joe InglesUTAG/FReached career highs in threes (2.7 3PM/G) and three-point percentage (45.1). Remains a good secondary playmaker.
111Mason PlumleeDETCComing off a career year but might not be part of the Pistons' future plans, despite signing a three-year, $25 million deal last offseason.
112Jakob PoeltlSACCRanked a career-high 111th per game behind averages of 9/7/2 with 1.8 blocks on 61.6 percent shooting.
113Kevin HuerterATLGHe's a good steals and threes contributor, but Huerter's value is lessened by the Hawks' overall depth.
114Jalen SuggsROOKGSuggs looked even more polished than expected at Gonzaga, and he'll likely be a high-minute player right away.
115Enes KanterPORCSaw increased run due to Jusuf Nurkic missing time. Fantasy upside will depend on where he signs in free agency.
116Jae'Sean TateHOUFCame out of nowhere as a rookie but doesn't appear to have massive upside when the Rockets are at full health.
117Thomas BryantWASCPlayed in just 10 games due to a torn ACL. Might miss the start of the 2021-22 season.
118Jonathan IsaacORLFWill be coming off a torn ACL but has flashed future-DPOY upside.
119Kendrick NunnMIAGAfter coming out of nowhere as a rookie, Nunn followed up with a 49-38-93 shooting season in 2020-21.
120Ricky RubioMINGRubio is not a reliable scorer, but he's averaged at least 6.0 assists in nine of his 10 NBA seasons.
121Kelly OubreGSWFOubre should enter 2021-22 as a high-risk/high-reward option after an up-and-down year in Golden State.
122Coby WhiteCHIGWhite's shooting never took off (35.9% 3Pt), but he remains a fairly high-upside player for the Bulls.
123Joe HarrisBROG/FHarris set career highs in made threes (3.1 per game) and three-point percentage (47.5%) playing alongside the Nets' superstar trio.
124Danny GreenPHIG/FHe's prone to slumps, but Green rarely misses time and averaged 2.5 made threes and 1.3 steals in 2020-21.
125Tyler HerroMIAGHerro's second season was mostly a letdown, but he should be entrusted with more responsibility in 2021-22.
126Isaiah StewartDETF/CDespite leading all rookies in total rebounds and blocks, Stewart may be stuck behind Mason Plumlee again.
127Cole AnthonyORLGA mid-season injury sapped some of Anthony's momentum, but he'll enter Year 2 as a prime good stats/bad team candidate.
128Jalen GreenROOKGA dynamic, athletic guard with major upside, Green will likely be worth a late-round flyer, regardless of where he lands.
129Devonte' GrahamCHAGGraham still hit 3.3 threes per game despite the emergence of LaMelo Ball, but he shot just 37.7 percent from the field.
130Victor OladipoMIAGOladipo hasn't looked like himself in three full seasons, so he has to be flagged as one of the NBA's biggest injury risks.
131Donte DiVincenzoMILGDiVincenzo's 5.8 boards, 3.1 assists, 2.0 threes and 1.1 steals per game made him a passable, lower-end option in standard leagues.
132Terrence RossORLGA high-volume three-point threat, Ross could be tasked with more scoring responsibility for a team that will likely struggle in 2021-22.
133Bojan BogdanovicUTAFHis efficiency has tailed off a bit since arriving in Utah, but Bogdanovic remains a rock-solid points/threes/FT% contributor.
134Gary TrentTORGTrent is essentially just a points/threes contributor, but he could be set to start alongside Fred VanVleet.
135Aaron GordonDENFMore valuable in real life than in fantasy, Gordon's numbers took a concerning dip after arriving in Denver.
136Wendell CarterORLCDurability remains a concern, but Carter should have the inside track to the starting center job in Orlando.
137Al HorfordOKCCIf Horford remains with the Thunder, he's probably a stay-away. But if he's moved to a better situation, he could have one last run in him.
138Bobby PortisMILFPortis was an excellent addition for Milwaukee, but he can't be counted upon to shoot 47% from three again.
139Serge IbakaLACF/CIbaka's ongoing back issues are a concern, but he's somehow only 31 years old
140James WisemanGSWCWiseman's rookie season was a disaster, but his upside and physical gifts are still impossible to ignore.
141Duncan RobinsonMIAGRobinson wasn't quite as impactful following last year's breakout, but he still poured in 3.5 threes per game at a 40.8% clip.
142Chuma OkekeORLFOkeke's long-term ceiling is unclear, but he showed plenty of promise as a second-year "rookie" in 2020-21.
143Kevin LoveCLEFAt this point, Love is almost guaranteed to miss 20-plus games and his upside is no longer worth the risk.
144Lauri MarkkanenCHIFThe last two seasons have been wildly disappointing, though Markkanen quietly shot 40% from three in 2020-21.
145Royce O'NealeUTAG/FA classic low-ceiling/high-floor player, O'Neale's best assets are his durability, rebounding and three-point shooting (career-high 1.5 3PM in 2020-21).
146Daniel GaffordWASCAfter coming over from Chicago, Gafford clearly solidified himself as the Wizards' best option at center. But the return of Thomas Bryant could further complicate things.
147Goran DragicMIAGHe's earned the benefit of the doubt, but it's very possible his outstanding 2019-20 season will stand out as a late-career anomaly. 
148Nicolas BatumLACFBatum resurrected his career with the Clippers and proved he's still an effective role player.
149Evan MobleyROOKF/CThe USC product averaged 16.4 points, 8.7 boards, 2.4 assists and 2.9 blocks as a freshman last season.
150Nickeil Alexander-WalkerNORGHe looked great when Lonzo Ball was injured, but if Ball remains in New Orleans there may be a roadblock at point guard.

Next up: Will Barton, DEN; Seth Curry, PHI; Mo Bamba, ORL; Brandon Clarke, MEM; Dorian Finney-Smith, DAL; De'Anthony Melton, MEM; Daniel Theis, CHI; Matisse Thybulle, PHI; Marvin Bagley, SAC; Darius Bazley, OKC; Alec Burks, NYK; Ivica Zubac, LAC

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ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Alex Barutha
Alex is RotoWire's NBA Assistant Editor. He writes articles about daily fantasy, year-long fantasy and sports betting. You can hear him on the RotoWire NBA Podcast, Sirius XM, DraftKings Live and other platforms. Vince Carter and Alex both first dunked during their respective sophomore years of high school.
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RotoWire's NBA Editor and host of the RotoWire NBA Podcast. Nick was awarded the FSWA Best Podcast -- All Sports award in 2017 and 2018. Many years ago, Stromile Swift gave Nick his unbelievably sweaty headband after a preseason game. Despite its failure to match his school colors, Nick went on to wear that headband for the entirety of his sixth grade basketball season. Catch Nick on Twitter @wha1en.
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