We're halfway through Week 2 of the 2021-22 NBA season, and the Fantasy Basketball space has gotten surprising performances from unexpected places. Some players have reached new heights by setting career highs. Others have bombed and made fantasy managers regret picking them up.
Who should Fantasy managers hold on to? Who should Fantasy managers hit the panic button on? We've identified some players worth buying and selling ahead of Week 3 to help you out.
Five to buy
- Harrison Barnes: Barnes has been a top-20 Fantasy small forward in points leagues since 2017, but he's taken an unexpected leap early in the 2021-22 season. He's averaging a career-high 26.8 points per game and leads the Kings in minutes and field goal attempts per contest. While I don't expect him to continue shooting over 50 percent from the field and 3, his role isn't likely to diminish. Marvin Bagley has been phased out of the rotation early, so small-ball minutes at power forward should keep Barnes busy for the foreseeable future. He has top-10 upside this year.
- Miles Bridges: LaMelo Ball was the Hornet who moved the Fantasy needle ahead of this season, but Bridges has been more impressive than the young point guard. Bridges has doubled his shot volume from last season, and that's led to career highs across the board. He's scored at least 25 points in four of his five games this season and will likely lead Charlotte in points and 3-pointers made.
- Desmond Bane: Bane's run as a starter has gone well. The Grizzlies wing has scored at least 17 points in all four games while shooting 50 percent from the field and 40 percent from 3. While Dillon Brooks is bound to return from the hand injury that's kept him sidelined, I think Bane's spot with the starters is safer than it is for DeAnthony Melton, who is more of a playmaker and is capable of running the second unit. If Brooks reclaims the starting small forward spot, Bane's shooting prowess could help him finish as a top-15 shooting guard.
- Kyle Lowry: Lowry's move to South Beach has been underwhelming so far. He's averaging just 7.7 points per game and is shooting under 30 percent from the field and 3. However, he's an essential part of Miami's rotation. He's eclipsed 30 minutes in two of the three games he's appeared in and is averaging a team-high 7.7 assists per game. The Heat don't have a legitimate backup playmaker, and Lowry's Fantasy value should rise when his scoring bounces back.
- Jordan Clarkson: Last year's Sixth Man of the Year still provides a significant scoring spark from the Utah Jazz bench. He's averaging 17.3 points and 3.0 rebounds per game in just over 24 minutes per contest. Only Donovan Mitchell and Bojan Bogdanovic have taken more shots than Clarkson. While it'll likely take an injury for Clarkson to finish as a top-20 point guard for a second straight year, few bench players will be given as much freedom. He can go toe to toe with low-end starters and has a good chance to lead all bench scorers.
Five to sell
- Chris Duarte: No rookie has showcased more scoring upside than Duarte so far, but the Pacers wing's role could be reduced soon. Caris LeVert is nearing a return after missing the start of the year with a back injury. Malcolm Brogdon and Domantas Sabonis are likely to be top 10 Fantasy options and their respective positions through Week 2, and LeVert could join them as a top 10 shooting guard in time. LeVert averaged 20 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 4.9 assists per game with a 27.9 usage rate during his first run with the Pacers. Duarte's impact should take a significant step back once LeVert resumes his old role.
- Kelly Oubre Jr.: The Hornets have an abundance of wings, and Oubre might be at the bottom of the pecking order. Miles Bridges and Gordon Hayward are Charlotte's top options, and the injured P.J. Washington (knee) is sure to play a significant role off the bench after finishing as a top 10 power forward in points leagues last year. Oubre won't average more than 31 minutes per game once Washington and Terry Rozier (ankle) are back in the rotation, so try to get something with more long-term value for him while you can.
- Precious Achiuwa: Achiuwa's notched double-doubles in five outings, but Toronto's depleted frontcourt should bounce back soon. Pascal Siakam is practicing in full without restrictions, and his impending return will drastically affect the minutes of the Raptors' power forwards. Siakam ranked seventh in minutes per game (35.8) last year, and he's sure to take on a similar workload alongside Fred VanVleet once healthy.
- Bogdan Bogdanovic: Bogdanovic was viewed as a top 20 shooting guard candidate early on, but Atlanta's wing depth looks strong now. The Hawks aren't struggling with injuries early on like they were last year, and young players are getting a chance to contribute off the bench. Cam Reddish's breakout start is the biggest threat to Bogdanovic, as he only trails Trae Young in points per game. Then there's Kevin Huerter, who's averaging 23.5 minutes per game. It'll be difficult for Bogdanovic to match the career-high mark of 16.4 points per game he hit last year with the Hawks' current personnel.
- Goran Dragic: Some thought Dragic could be a fringe top-40 point guard after relocating to Toronto, but he hasn't been very impactful with the Raptors. He's fallen short of 15 minutes in three of the four games he's appeared in and isn't a top-three scorer or assist man for the Raptors. Toronto is prioritizing youth during its rebuilding. Don't expect Dragic to turn things around anytime soon. He'll need a lot more playing time to be worth rostering.