Fantasy women's basketball: Draft tiers at guard

r1327190 1296x729 16 9

To build a winning fantasy women’s basketball team, you don’t have to spend tons of time preparing. You just need a plan.

That’s where breaking the positions into draft tiers can be extremely helpful. Those fantasy managers who do a little extra work to know which players and positions to focus on early in the draft and which to leave until the middle or later rounds gain a big advantage.

On the basis of our projections and tiers, the forward/center position is much deeper than the guard position this season, so be sure to factor that in when making your selections.

With that in mind, here are our draft tiers at guard for this season.

Tier 1

Jewell Loyd, Seattle Storm
Arike Ogunbowale, Dallas Wings

After Breanna Stewart’s departure from Seattle to the New York Liberty, Loyd stepped up to fill the void. She averaged a career-high 24.7 PPG, 4.7 RPG, and 3.4 APG in 35.4 minutes, boasting an impressive usage rate of 31.5%. Despite the Storm’s addition of Skylar Diggins-Smith and Nneka Ogwumike to the roster this offseason, Loyd is expected to maintain a high usage rate and remains worthy of a top pick in drafts. She demonstrated her ability to coexist with Stewart and Sue Bird during their time together in Seattle.

Ogunbowale is also another safe pick. She averaged 21.2 PPG, 4.5 APG, 3.7 RPG and 1.7 SPG while playing a career high 37.2 minutes last season. The Wings offense will continue to revolve around her, and she could be leaned on even more with Satou Sabally set to miss the first half of the season as she rehabs a shoulder injury.

You can’t go wrong with Loyd or Ogunbowale early in the draft.

Tier 2

Sabrina Ionescu, New York Liberty
Chelsea Gray, Las Vegas Aces
Rhyne Howard, Atlanta Dream
Skylar Diggins-Smith, Seattle Storm
Kelsey Plum, Las Vegas Aces
Caitlin Clark, Indiana Fever
Brittney Sykes, Washington Mystics
Kahleah Copper, Phoenix Mercury
Jackie Young, Las Vegas Aces

The one player in this tier fantasy managers will have questions about is Clark. You should feel comfortable adding the rookie to your fantasy team. Clark was drafted No. 1 overall by the Indiana Fever and should command a high usage rate out of the gate, just like Aliyah Boston and Rhyne Howard as the top-over pick in the two previous seasons. Clark was the first player in Division I history, men or women’s, to reach 3,000 points and 1,000 assists. Her skill set will translate well to the WNBA. The supply of viable guards in fantasy hoops is limited so don’t hesitate to select anyone in this tier.

Kelsey Plum receives significant attention, and rightfully so, on an Aces team that led the league in offensive rating last season. However, Chelsea Gray should not be overlooked. She recently signed a contract extension and averaged 15.3 PPG, 7.3 APG, and 4.0 RPG last season. Despite injuring her left foot during the Finals last season, Gray is expected to be healthy by the start of the regular season. While Plum is known for her scoring abilities, Gray can also contribute across other statistical categories.

The Sky have undergone significant roster changes since winning the championship back in 2021, and Kahleah Copper now finds herself on a rebuilding Phoenix Mercury team after being one of the big offseason acquisitions. While she may not be the primary option on a Phoenix team that includes Diana Taurasi and Brittney Griner, Copper remains a solid fantasy option due to her ability to contribute across multiple statistical categories. Last season, Copper averaged 18.7 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 2.0 APG, and 1.0 SPG in 31.2 minutes, and we project similar numbers for her in 2024.

Tier 3

Courtney Vandersloot, New York Liberty
Allisha Gray, Atlanta Dream
Kelsey Mitchell, Indiana Fever
Marina Mabrey, Chicago Sky
Courtney Williams, Minnesota Lynx
Jordin Canada, Atlanta Dream

Don’t let Vandersloot’s teammates like Stewart, Ionescu and Jonquel Jones deter you from adding her to your fantasy team. Last season, the Liberty had the second-highest offensive rating (109.6), surpassed only by the Las Vegas Aces (113.0). This favorable environment sets the stage for Vandersloot to continue thriving. She averaged 10.5 PPG, 8.1 APG, and 1.3 SPG last season. Any guard in this tier is a solid choice if you prioritize the F/C position early in your draft.

Tier 4

Ariel Atkins, Washington Mystics
Kayla McBride, Minnesota Lynx
Diana Taurasi, Phoenix Mercury
Lexie Brown, Los Angeles Sparks
Diamond Miller, Minnesota Lynx
Moriah Jefferson, Connecticut Sun

Miller was someone I mentioned in my sleepers column. She should be healthy heading into the 2024 season after averaging 12.1 PPG, 3.5 RPG, and 2.5 APG in 26.1 minutes as a rookie last season. Miller is poised to exceed expectations. Despite Taurasi being 41 years old, she averaged 16.0 PPG, 3.6 RPG, and 4.6 APG in 27.3 MPG last season. While her workload may be managed throughout the season, resulting in missed games, Taurasi remains productive when healthy. As a hedge, fantasy managers should consider selecting Sug Sutton near the tail end of their drafts, providing a plug-and-play option for the games Taurasi misses.

Tier 5

Diamond DeShields, Chicago Sky
Dana Evans, Chicago Sky
Sug Sutton, Phoenix Mercury
Natisha Hiedeman, Minnesota Lynx
Jacy Sheldon, Dallas Wings
Sophie Cunningham, Phoenix Mercury
Sami Whitcomb, Seattle Storm
Rebecca Allen, Phoenix Mercury
Erica Wheeler, Indiana Fever

Tier 6

Shatori Walker-Kimbrough, Washington Mystics
Jordan Horston, Seattle Storm
Aari McDonald, Los Angeles Sparks
Crystal Dangerfield, Dallas Wings
DiJonai Carrington, Connecticut Sun
Tyasha Harris, Connecticut Sun
Kristy Wallace, Indiana Fever
Victoria Vivians, Seattle Storm
Layshia Clarendon, Los Angeles Sparks
Kia Nurse, Los Angeles Sparks

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top