With the 2022-23 NBA season approaching, fantasy basketball managers are gearing up for another year of action. In each season, drafting a player who will go on to outperform his ADP is crucial to success. That type of player tends to be a small forward, or someone eligible to play the position. This is a deep group across the league, so identifying sleepers and busts is important. Here’s a few players we feel will take a step forward this season, along with a few set to decline a bit.
Small forward sleepers
Keldon Johnson, San Antonio Spurs
ESPN ADP: 91.8
DK Nation ranking: 11th SF, 51st overall
The Spurs are going to be bad, which likely hurts Johnson’s ADP. He’s also coming off an injury, which may scare people away. However, the forward should be the focal point of this offense and has shown he can deliver solid production regardless of the environment. Pure numbers are what matter here, and Johnson should have those this season.
RJ Barrett, New York Knicks
ESPN ADP: 96.2
DK Nation ranking: 17th SF, 76th overall
Barrett just inked a contract extension with the Knicks, who believe he’s a star in the making. The small forward did have a nice jump last year, averaging 20.0 points per game. He’s going to be taking more shots this season as a result, which should further bump up his point total. Look for Barrett to blast this ADP by a good margin, especially if he gets the keys to the offense sooner rather than later.
Small forward busts
Saddiq Bey, Detroit Pistons
ESPN ADP: 84.8
DK Nation ranking: 15th SF, 71st overall
The big problem with Bey is going to be opportunities. Cade Cunningham is likely to be the focal point of Detroit’s offense, and the team acquiring Bojan Bogdanovic didn’t help Bey’s cause. This player has emerged as a viable starter with some upside, but it might be a year too early before he truly jumps into the next realm.
Andrew Wiggins, Golden State Warriors
ESPN ADP: 63.6
DK Nation ranking: 21st SF, 86th overall
There’s a lot of hype around Wiggins, especially after his playoff and Finals run. The small forward should be more of a force on the boards, especially if Draymond Green remains away from the team for some time. However, Wiggins is not going to be the offensive focus with Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Jordan Poole around. That cuts into his fantasy basketball value significantly.