With the long-awaited 2020 NBA Draft now in the rear-view, it's time to take a closer look at which players could make an immediate impact.
Looking through a Fantasy lens, here are the rookies to consider targeting in re-draft leagues, as well as some to consider for Dynasty formats:
Anthony Edwards, Timberwolves
Unlike most No. 1 overall picks, Edwards isn't walking into a situation where the cupboard is bare and he'll be one of the clear go-to guys. Edwards still projects as a starter -- even after the Wolves acquired Ricky Rubio during the draft -- but he may have to play slightly out of position. With Karl-Anthony Towns and D'Angelo Russell firmly ahead of him in the pecking order, Edwards is unlikely to have a big-time statistical season as a rookie. The Georgia product may be worth a flyer in deeper leagues, but as of now he holds much more value in Dynasty formats.
James Wiseman, Warriors
Unfortunately, most of the Warriors-related attention on draft night was focused on Klay Thompson, who sustained what may be a serious injury during a workout Wednesday afternoon. Wiseman walks into an extremely unique situation as a No. 2 pick for a team with title aspirations. Thompson's injury could change the Warriors' course a bit, but Wiseman should be positioned to, at the very least, compete for a starting spot. While for the first time in his life he won't be the focal point, Wiseman should play a large enough role to rack up rebounds and blocks, while scoring efficiently around the rim. Wiseman should be on the radar in standard leagues, while ranking as perhaps the most valuable rookie in Dynasty leagues.
LaMelo Ball, Hornets
Ball slipping to No. 3 was somewhat of a surprise, and it lands him with a team that already has two starting-caliber guards in Devonte' Graham and Terry Rozier. It's possible the Hornets could bring Ball off the bench, but it's also possible they could explore the possibility of selling high on Graham (or Rozier, for that matter) this offseason. Either way, Ball is going to get his opportunities next season. If the minutes are there, Ball could be a high-level source of assists right away, and he's also a fantastic rebounder for his position. The question is whether he can shoot the ball efficiently enough to avoid being a significant drain on percentages. Ball projects as a much better free throw shooter than his older brother, but his outside shot needs work.
Killian Hayes, Pistons
Before seeing Hayes play an NBA game, it'll be tough to justify spending a draft pick on him, but there's no doubt he's in an advantageous position. Derrick Rose is still on the roster, but there's a good chance that changes between now and Dec. 22. And in trading Luke Kennard, the Pistons officially signaled what most expected: they're ready to embrace a full rebuild. For now, Hayes is the highest-upside player on the roster, so his development should be a top priority. If that leads to big minutes right away, Hayes could be the best bad-team-good-stats guy in this draft next season.
Obi Toppin, Knicks
Speaking of bad-team-good-stats guys, if I had to pick a top Fantasy rookie, it would be Toppin. There are reasons the best player in college basketball fell to No. 8, but they mostly pertain to his age (Toppin turns 23 in March) and his defense. For Fantasy purposes, neither of those are overly concerning. In fact, Toppin's age probably works to his advantage. He's the most NBA-ready player in the class, and while he may not have the highest long-term ceiling, Toppin should be an impact player from Day 1. If his collegiate profile translates, Toppin should be an ultra-efficient scorer around the rim who can also step out and hit 3s. At Dayton, Toppin relied heavily on his athleticism on the defensive end, but he still averaged 2.2 combined blocks and steals. If he can approach a full block per game next season, that would be an added bonus.
Isaac Okoro, Cavaliers
Would I recommend drafting Okoro in standard leagues? No, I would not. But the Auburn product landed in a great situation and should have a chance to compete for the starting small forward spot right away. The minutes alone could enable Okoro to put up some meaningful defensive stats, but the more likely scenario is that he struggles as a shooter and 2020-21 is mostly a developmental year.
Deni Avdija, Wizards
As with Hayes, there's a lot to like about Avdija, but he's not enough of a sure thing to warrant drafting in most leagues. Avdija is also in a considerably worse Fantasy situation than Hayes -- especially if the Wizards are able to re-sign Davis Bertans. Avdija would probably need an injury or two to be Fantasy-relevant next season, but he's a solid draft-and-stash candidate in Dynasty formats.
Tyrese Haliburton, Kings
Haliburton's tumble to No. 12 was among the biggest surprises on draft night. Widely considered one of the safest prospects in the draft, Haliburton ultimately landed in a pretty good spot. Obviously, De'Aaron Fox is entrenched at point guard, but by the end of the month, it's possible neither Bogdan Bogdanovic nor Buddy Hield is still in a Kings uniform. That doesn't necessarily mean the Kings are looking to hand a starting spot to Haliburton, but he'll almost certainly have a path to a decent workload as a rookie. If his production at Iowa State translates, Haliburton could be the most well-rounded Fantasy prospect in the class. And if the Kings do ultimately hand him a starting spot, Haliburton would be among the rookies worth a dart late in some drafts.
Aaron Nesmith, Celtics
The Celtics added a valuable win-now piece in Nesmith, but his path to Fantasy relevance in Year 1 will be an uphill battle. The sharpshooter out of Vanderbilt may be the best shooter in the class, however. If he can emerge as a consistent 3-point gunner off the bench, Nesmith could have some value as a single-category specialist.
Saddiq Bey, Pistons
It might require another roster move or two, but there's no reason the Pistons shouldn't see what they have in Bey this season. Right now, Trevor Ariza and Tony Snell project to sit ahead of him on the depth chart, but neither player is a part of the Pistons' future. An accomplished, versatile scorer at Villanova, Bey is a player to monitor if -- and probably when -- the Pistons eventually turn things over to their young players.
Malachi Flynn, Raptors
Early in the draft process, I claimed Flynn as one of my favorite players in the class. I'm not sure there's a more perfect landing spot than Toronto. As a prospect, Flynn garnered some Fred VanVleet comparisons. Ironically, he becomes a lot more interesting as a Fantasy commodity if the Raptors part ways with their free-agent-to-be guard this offseason. Toronto has enough pieces to avoid a full rebuild, but Flynn is ready-made to contribute to a contender or non-contender alike. If there's a Malcolm Brogdon-esque prospect in this class who could break out as a rookie, my money would be on Flynn.