Friday, July 16, 2010

Top 10 Players Going Into Contract Years in 2010-11

Like most people at draft time, I'm looking over player stats and trying to get an idea of where they will fit in on the team to get a better sense of a player's value. Aside from that, I always check which players are entering contract years in the coming season. A contract year is the ultimate motivator for many players. Players know that if they have an amazing year, no matter how good they were in previous years, they can get a fat contract in the offseason. Below are the top 10 players who's current contracts will expire at the end of this season:

  1. Carmelo Anthony: I expect him to have a great year no matter what. Still, Carmelo has the potential top be a top 3 player in fantasy this season. He's a guy I could see putting up monster numbers if he continues to improve his rebounding and all-around game to go along with his amazing offensive abilities.
  2. Al Horford: While Melo will get a max contract no matter what he does, Horford could be playing to get more money this offseason. Horford has shown steady improvement throughout his young career to the point of being an All Star last season. If he can improve on his numbers, Horford will be one of the top fantasy big men this season.
  3. Jason Richardson: JRich is in a great situation. Not only is he entering a contract year, but the moves the Suns have made this offseason make him their primary scorer. I expect career high scoring numbers out of him this year and, hopefully, we can see better contributions from him in the defensive categories as well as rebounding. It would not surprise me if he made the All Star team for the first time in his career.
  4. Yao Ming: Yao is coming off a major injury that caused him to miss all of last season as well as the end of the 2008-09 season. He has a lot to prove in 2010-11 as teams may not want to pay him big money for fear of another serious injury. Yao will be looking to put up the great numbers he has in his career while staying on the court as much as possible. He's a high risk/high reward player to gamble on in the middle of your draft if you have other centers to fall back on in case he goes down with another serious injury.
  5. Marc Gasol: Similar to Horford, Gasol has been steadily improving in his short career and he'll also be playing to get more money this offseason. He's firmly solidified himself as the Grizzlies' starting center and has the potential to further improve on his numbers this year.
  6. David West: West has been an All Star twice in his career, but hasn't really been paid like a star. He's considered one of the top PFs in the league, but last season was an off year for him. Look for him to put everything together this year to earn the big payday he deserves.
  7. Aaron Brooks: Brooks established himself as the starting PG for the Rockets last year. Look for him to improve this year as he seeks his first big contract.
  8. Joakim Noah: After a slow start to his career, Noah has begun to live up to the hype he had coming out of Florida and has become one of the best young bigs in the league. He is a big time rebounder and shot blocker. Look for that to continue this season. Even with Boozer in Chicago, Noah has a shot of taking his game up a notch this year.
  9. Tony Parker: While Tim Duncan is also a potential free agent going into this season, it's likely Parker who ups his game this year. The Spurs haven't shown they're committed to Parker even for next season. There's a chance Parker gets dealt at some point as the Spurs feel George Hill is ready to takeover and he'd come at a considerable discount. Look for Parker to improve on his numbers this year. I'd be even more interested in the French star if he were traded to a weaker team, as he'd be almost guaranteed to have a monster year.
  10. Troy Murphy: Murphy has been overpaid in his current contract, so he'll need to put up strong numbers to earn himself another big payday. Murphy has averaged a double-double the last 2 seasons, so look for that to continue. He's another player that could be dealt as the Pacers look for a starting PG. If Murphy ends up on a team without a big time scorer, he could put up some huge numbers.

Other Players of Note
  • Tim Duncan
  • Mo Williams
  • Nene
  • Carl Landry
  • Andrei Kirilenko
  • Zach Randolph
  • Greg Oden
  • Tayshaun Prince
  • Caron Butler
  • Tyson Chandler

No comments: