Read below for rest-of-season points-league ranks.
One of the most difficult parts of these rest-of-season rankings is deciding how much to factor in previous injury history when projecting forward. All season, I've penalized players like Anthony Davis, Joel Embiid, Danilo Gallinari and Nikola Vucevic (among others) slightly in the rankings because of their previous tendencies to get hurt. I've tried to be fair and not allow the injury risk to lower them too far from what their production would dictate their spot to be, but I have included a small injury factor in my calculations.
This week, for the first time all season, Davis' production surpassed the threshold, and I was all set to move him into first place in the rankings. So, what happens? Before I can actually publish this week's rankings, Davis got hurt and was announced out for the next week-plus.
In addition, Gallinari is skipping the flight for the LA Clippers' three-game road trip because of back issues. Embiid is also battling back problems, and though he hasn't missed a game yet, he's sporting a consistent 'questionable' tag that makes the nerves bad.
It would have been nice to have someone new atop the rankings this week, since Giannis Antetokounmpo has been camped in that spot all season. But, perhaps the timing of these injuries was meant to illustrate the utility of that injury risk coefficient I've been applying. I didn't know for sure that injuries would happen, but there was enough of a probability that it was useful for it to impact the rest of the season projections for these players.
Without further ado, here are my latest rest-of-season points rankings and reaction.
Chris Paul (hamstring) is expected to return this week from his long injury layoff. James Harden went into insane MVP mode with Paul out, but if healthy, Paul would be expected to return to his level as an impact player in his own right.
Lonzo Ball was playing his best basketball of the season before going down with an ankle injury that could land him on the shelf for a month or more. Meanwhile, Rajon Rondo's value increased despite his own continued absence, as the way is clear for him to start and produce in his return while Ball is out.
Donovan Mitchell has quietly stepped up his game of late after a slow first half of the season. He is averaging 29.0 PPG (48.3 FG%, 84.0 FT%), 5.0 APG, 3.9 RPG, 3.0 3PG, 1.6 SPG and 0.6 BPG during his last eight contests.
Lou Williams has missed the past two games with a hamstring injury, and is expected to miss at least one more, but he is traveling with the team on their upcoming three-game road trip and thus seems likely to return soon. He takes a small blip in the rankings, but should bounce back soon.
Kevin Huerter makes his debut in the rankings this week on the strength of nine straight double-figure scoring games, during which he has averaged 15.9 PPG, 3.9 APG, 3.7 RPG and 1.0 SPG in 37.8 MPG. The rookie is getting all the run that he can handle right now for the lottery-bound Atlanta Hawks.
While Bradley Beal gets the majority of the attention for the Washington Wizards since John Wall went down for the season, Otto Porter Jr. is quietly bouncing back from his slow start with averages of 19.5 PPG, 8.5 RPG, 2.3 SPG, 2.3 3PG and 1.0 APG during his past four outings.
Danilo Gallinari's back problems slid him down 15 spots in the rankings this week. His production this season has been clearly top-50 worthy, but as mentioned in the intro, we can't just ignore that he missed 109 games in the three seasons leading up to this one.
Carmelo Anthony has been on the sidelines for almost the whole season, but there are rumors that the Houston Rockets would like to trade him before the deadline. He'd be purely a speculative add at this point, but he's at least worth keeping an eye on.
Julius Randle and Nikola Mirotic both get a small short-term boost with Anthony Davis out. He should be back in a week or two, but in the meantime, both Randle and Mirotic have the potential to solidly up their production.
The Chicago Bulls' frontcourt is in flux right now, with Wendell Carter Jr. injured and out for the next couple of months (perhaps the season). Jabari Parker had re-entered the rotation before Carter's injury and has proceeded to average 13.8 PPG, 4.5 RPG and 2.0 APG in only 17.9 MPG. Bobby Portis, meanwhile, has quite a bit of upside if he starts getting more minutes in the middle with Carter out.
D.J. Wilson didn't quite make the top 150 this week, but he's worth keeping an eye on. The young big man out of Michigan has been getting minutes for the Milwaukee Bucks of late and is averaging 9.7 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 1.7 APG and 1.3 BPG during his past three outings.
Clint Capela was in the midst of a career-best season, but his injury is expected to keep him out for at least the next month. With only three months left in the season, this was enough to send him plummeting in the rankings.
Deandre Ayton sat out Sunday's game with a sprained ankle, and his return prognosis is unknown. While Luka Doncic seems destined to win the NBA Rookie of the Year, Ayton has been the fantasy ROY this season.
The rest-of-season rankings are influenced by my projections, current player performance, injury and player situation factors to quantitatively estimate the rest-of-season rankings with more precision.
Also, our rankings include arrows to indicate whether a given player made a notable move up or down the rankings since last week. This helps keep you up to speed with how player values are changing during the course of the season.
Note: These rankings reflect the expected player value for the remainder of this season.