Well that was fast. We know that everything is all out of whack this year but didn’t the NBA season just end with the Lakers raising the championship trophy? It did so here we are moving on to the new season. And that means there simply isn’t time for Los Angeles to rest on their laurels.
We have to acknowledge that what the Lakers did last season worked as you can never argue with a season that ends in a championship but there are already questions about their outlook for the upcoming year. With the acquisition of Dennis Schroder though, Los Angeles took the first step in building towards a repeat while securing the point guard position. Even more important though the point guard’s fantasy prospects have improved following his trade from Oklahoma City.
With the Thunder, Schroder came off the bench as the former first round pick was stuck behind both Chris Paul and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander but you wouldn’t have known it based on his production. Despite starting the game on the bench Schroder was still a large part of Oklahoma City’s core as he averaged 31 minutes per game. Over the last four seasons playing time hasn’t exactly been a problem for Schroder as he has averaged between 29 and 32 minutes per game. Entering the 2020-2021 season we should see a slight uptick in his playing time though as he will be moving back into the starting lineup with the Lakers but more importantly he will be upgrading his supporting cast.
Last season Schroder averaged just four assists per game which is light for a starting point guard but sharing the floor with LeBron James and Anthony Davis will provide ample opportunity to boost those numbers and at least trend closer to his career high of 6.3 assists if not surpass it. Offensively Schroder has never been shy about putting the ball through the hoop and that continued last season as he averaged 18.9 points per game.
Not only did Schroder upgrade as far as a supporting cast as he now will team up with two of the best players in the sport, but he also becomes the third option on a high scoring team that will likely play at a fast pace. From a DFS perspective field goal percentage is not nearly as important compared to seasonal leagues as all we care about it is that the points are there, not necessarily how efficiently they are gathered. However it is still a good sign that Schroder shot a career best 46.9% from the field last season. Of greater importance though is Schroder reaching career high marks in three pointers both made and attempted along with three-point percentage (38.5%).
The ceiling with Schroder is going to be lower than with other, more explosive options but there is also a pretty big caveat in play here; price. By no means is Schroder going to be cheap but there will be some cost savings compared to the “elite” options. With 3.6 rebounds and roughly one steal per game Schroder produces enough that reaching the 30 to 35-point threshold each game is a relatively reasonable expectation.
While there is upside here and Schroder is a valuable DFS option with the trade to Los Angeles benefiting him, I’m not expecting to see a drastically different player than we did last season even as his situation has improved in all counts. We have to remember that despite the fact that Schroder will be the starting point guard, it is James who will be handling the ball quite often.
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