Introduction: Fantasy Basketball: Building a Team

A guide to enjoying a great day in your fantasy basketball draft in order to compete with the best all season long.

Step 1: Step 1: Knowledge of the NBA

This step seems a bit redundant if you are signing up to play a full fantasy basketball season, however, preliminary knowledge of the NBA is necessary in order to succeed moving forward throughout the season. Without a grasp of how things play out on the actual hardwood, you will find it hard to gather a winning formula. As previously stated, this should not be an issue based on the audience this guide is intended for.

Step 2: Step 2: Find Your League's Home (and Rule Set)

In order to properly plan for your draft strategy, you must decide what service you will use to play. Yahoo and ESPN are among the most commonly used options, being free to play and providing excellent user support. The rules the league follows for scoring will be key to planning a proper draft strategy. The game's only played off stats accumulated, and so following scoring details is at the top of the priority list when attacking the draft.

Step 3: Step 3: Research

This is where you will separate yourself from the pack, going off of what they watch on TV and the prelisted player rankings. Over the course of the offseason leading up to your draft, regularly conduct research on NBA Fantasy advice. While experts will differ on certain players/subjects, they tend to follow a general consensus on trends in the league and their resulting meaning towards fantasy basketball. Many experts put out weekly or daily columns detailing their thoughts on current events. Another resource to have in mind are these experts "Big Boards". These boards curtail a 50-100 player list ranked in order of most fantasy value, according to that particular expert. Be sure to check what scoring system their rankings are based upon, and compare various boards. Looking at many of these will show a general trend to follow in draft order.

Step 4: Step 4: Draft Day

It's time to put the plan into action! Be sure to be logged in early beforehand and not rush last second into the draft. The biggest key in fantasy basketball to look out for is position versatility or availability. The game is played on a nightly basis even though not every team plays every day. This means some positions may be left without an available player that night, which would lead to a lost opportunity to gain further points. Looking to draft players which can be placed in multiple positions helps to combat this problem. It enables the owner of the team to shift players around, potentially filling in more roster spots per night. Be sure to also be conscious of other player's team building strategies as they become apparent throughout the draft. Noticing the needs of one team can be the difference in being able to draft a key player for your own roster.

Step 5: Step 5: Tinker, and Enjoy!

With your full roster fleshed out, now is the time to tinker with your potential lineups. Go inside your starting lineup, and look at different players position availability, both already starting and off the bench. You can experiment with lineups with nothing on the line, and figure out who will be ready to replace who depending on the schedule that evening. This will allow you to quickly edit lineups and manage your team effectively throughout the season. This will conclude the draft process for fantasy basketball, and you will now be able to enjoy the season!