The 2021-22 NBA season is underway, and some fantasy managers got to see their players in action during Tuesday's two-game slate, which featured the Bucks, Nets, Lakers, and Warriors. Week 1 continued on Wednesday, and fantasy managers should know where their fantasy teams have room for improvement ahead of Week 2.
Some fantasy managers in Roto leagues could be in for a rude awakening when they realize they didn't stock up on enough playmakers, three-point shooters, or shot blockers. However, there's plenty of time to shore up your roster. I've identified a few category boosters worth pursuing during Week 1.
Killian Hayes, G, DET (47% rostered)
A series of injuries derailed Hayes's rookie season, but he showed promise as a playmaker when he was on the court. While he'll share playmaking responsibilities with Cade Cunningham throughout the year, he has a chance to dominate Detroit's point guard minutes while the top pick from the 2021 NBA Draft recovers from an ankle injury. The Pistons will likely ease Cunningham into things once he returns, so Hayes could be fantasy-relevant for a few weeks early on. He averaged 10.1 assists per 100 possessions throughout his brief rookie campaign. Those numbers are on par with what Ben Simmons, LaMelo Ball, and Damian Lillard put up last year. Playmaking is a given if Hayes can stay on the floor. The real bonus could come from him showing his defensive potential with steals as well.
Three-point shooting/three-point percentage
Duncan Robinson, G/F, MIA (53% rostered)
Robinson finished fourth overall in threes made in each of his last two seasons. He converted his attempts at a 40 percent clip or better in both years. Only Damian Lillard and Buddy Hield have attempted more triples since the 2019-20 season. While Kyle Lowry could take some of Robinson's scoring potential away, the sniper is still a starter who's capable of boosting your fantasy teams outside shooting numbers. His efficiency should make him a top target if your fantasy team needs three-point shooting.
Ivica Zubac, C, LAC (36% rostered)
Zubac was one of my favorite waiver wire targets earlier this week, and he's still widely available. His rostership has gone up by 3 percent since Tuesday. Ibaka played 5-on-5 basketball for the first time since last June on Sunday, and the timeline for his return to the hardwood remains unclear. Zubac averaged 10.1 points and 7.6 rebounds on 25.5 minutes a night as a starter last year. His rebounding numbers should rise unless the Clippers choose to give Isaiah Hartenstein legitimate backup minutes after winning the team's final roster spot.
Matisse Thybulle, G/F, PHI (11% rostered)
Thybulle averaged a league-high 3.8 steals per hundred possessions last season. He's likely to get more minutes on the wing while Ben Simmons is sidelined, and he made the most of that opportunity in his 2021-22 debut on Wednesday. Thybulle racked up four steals and one block in 27 minutes. Thybulle isn't going to lead the league in blocks, but few wings can match his instincts. No player below 6-foot-7 could match his mark of 1.8 blocks per 100 possessions from last season.