Free Projections + Analysis: Kyrie Irving

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by Eric Wong on September 10, 2017

The Celtics clearly had the most interesting offseason of any team, so let’s delve into this outlook of their new star point guard…

Even our Basic Draft Guide includes Player Profiles + Stat Projections for 300+ players. Some sites like to take the easy way out by relying on algorithms to make their projections, but we continue to calculate by hand, going team by team, player by player, category by category.

Boston has been a fun team to project because of all the fresh faces and new opportunities!

Irving was one of the easier Celtics to project of course (his stats are trending up), but trying to accurately project guys like Marcus Smart, Marcus Morris, Jaylen Brown and Jayson Tatum requires much more effort (I’ve put in countless hours) and refined skill (been projecting NBA stats for 12+ years, and am quite confident in my abilities).

So while I hope you enjoy and appreciate this preview for Kyrie, I also hope you see the value in trying to find the most accurate and useful assessments for THE OTHER GUYS, because that’s often what separates winners from losers in fantasy leagues.

Just something to think about if you’re considering RotoEvil vs. our competitors…

Kyrie Irving

Kyrie got his wish and received a positive change of scenery. Now out of LeBron’s shadow and entering his prime years, Irving should be able to blossom in Boston. Offensively he’s a juggernaut, one of the best in the league at creating his own shot and very accurate from mid-range, with the cojones to take clutch shots.

Last year the Cavs led the league in isolation play frequency (11.9%), whereas the Celtics were 3rd from the bottom (5.5%). As such, I’m expecting less dancing with the ball and quicker decisiveness from Kyrie this season, which should lead to more catch and shoot threes and aggressive drives to the hoop. Consider that Irving attempted only 4.6 FTA per game last year while IT got to the foul line 8.5 times per game… but no more LeBron watching now, so it’s easy to project Kyrie attempting 5-6 FTA or more for the 1st time in his career (where he’s over 87% from the stripe for his career).

Irving’s rebounds will also surely climb, as his new team doesn’t have the likes of Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson to secure boards, so it’s very important for Boston’s guards to pitch in. He won’t snatch ’em like Avery Bradley did last season, but he’ll be closer to 4 boards rather than last year’s 3.2 rpg. Kyrie has quick hands and is decent in steals, but more importantly, Brad Stevens will ask him to simply stay in front of his man more, as he hasn’t always given 100% effort on D in the past.

Last year Kyrie handed out just 5.8 dimes per game and his career-best in that category is 6.1 apg, but Boston will be relying on him to make plays, so I’m projecting a healthy increase to 6.7 helpers. It’s possible he could top 7+ apg, but remember that the Celtics love to share the ball and that Hayward (career-best of 5.2 assists) and Horford (5.0 assists last year, which led all centers) are fantastic facilitators in their own right.

Bottom Line: One would be foolish to not expect a healthy and happy jump in production from Uncle Drew. Last season he ranked 14th in minutes, 11th in points,17th in made threes and 22nd in assists per game, but this season he’ll surely finish Top 10 in minutes and scoring, Top 15 in threes and Top 20 in assists, while maintaining strong efficiency. Irving’s durability has been an issue in the past however, as he’s missed an average of 15.8 games per season since joining the NBA (75+ games only once in his career).

RotoEvil’s 2017-18 Projections for: Kyrie Irving
Free Fantasy Basketball Projections - Kyrie Irving

These free projections are being shown as images, but our Draft Guide users get access to a giant spreadsheet containing ALL of our Stat Projections, sortable by category, so you can quickly view league leaders and easily compare stats of similar players.

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