October 12, 2022, 4:14 pm
While we’re only days away from actual NBA basketball, what’s the point of having media day and preseason games if you don’t overreact to them? Everyone is in the best shape of their life, every team but the Lakers is optimistic about their current roster, and every executive thinks every young player can guard one through five.
An annual tradition among NBA fandom is that when we like a player heading into the season, we make a victory lap when they play well and how that will translate, while we proclaim “it’s just preseason” when they don’t do well. And if we don’t like the player, we make the same victory lap when they struggle and have the same hand wave about it being preseason when they do well.
Even though I definitely have some guys that I like and don’t like, these reactions are going to result in something that will actually matter throughout this NBA season. If there’s anyone you think I missed, or anyone you disagree with, feel free to shout me out on Twitter @rhett_bauer!Tari EasonF, Houston Rockets
There’s no other player to start this with. Eason is everywhere on the court, contributing winning plays and fantasy production on both ends. It’s only been three preseason games, but he’s averaging 20 points, 10 rebounds, one assist and almost two steals per game in just 25 mpg with shooting splits of 64/44/80. It’s no certainty that Eason gets 30mpg this year with the options the Rockets have on the wing, but if they’re smart they’ll let him run loose and end up winning some redraft leagues.Grant WilliamsF, Boston Celtics
Robert Williams is going to miss somewhere from 15 to 30 games and will likely be handled carefully even when he does come back, and Al Horford turned 36 this summer. Horford was reportedly not playing in back-to-backs before Timelord got hurt, so does that now change for the whole year? Color me skeptical. Grant Williams turns 24 years old at the most important position in the league as he is pretty efficient and solid defensively. His fantasy game isn’t fantastic as a low-volume player that is probably better in real life, but opportunity is the name of the game in deeper leagues where Williams is most valuable.
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