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Jayson Tatum Sits Atop Tier 2 of 8-CAT Fantasy Small Forwards

by NBC Sports EDGE Staff
Updated On: October 15, 2021, 3:18 pm ET

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As the NBA regular season tips off next Tuesday night, fantasy hoops managers far and wide are drafting their squads and conjuring up winning strategies for the 2021-22 campaign. With an abundance of data available ahead of the opener, we've got you covered with the sharpest and most digestible basketball analysis you'll need to build your own fantasy super team. 

This year's NBA Draft Guide is packed with exclusive content geared toward providing you the knowledge needed to get the best value in drafts and build championship-winning rosters. We're here to assist your team management from the opening tip on October 19th to the final week of the regular season. Whether you're looking for top sleepers, rankings, positional tiers, mock drafts, expert analysis or player profiles, we're confident these are some of the sharpest fantasy basketball tools we've ever produced.

We've already previewed our 8-CAT SG Tiers, 8-CAT PG Tiers8-CAT small forward rankings, 8-CAT power forward rankings8-CAT Center Tiers and identified some draft reach candidates from our Draft Guide. Today, we take a look at a sample of our 8-CAT small forward tiers for the '21-22 season.

By all accounts, Kevin Durant is the top small forward in the game, with his offensive and defensive prowess ranking second to none. However, after him, it's almost a toss-up on whom can be considered the next best small forward in fantasy. That's why it's important for fantasy managers to know which small forwards they can rely on and which unheralded names can yield value. 

It's important to take the time to research which small forwards can steady your team without having to expend important draft picks. Here, we highlight some small forwards worth considering this season. Check out who offers promise at the small forward position this year:

2021-22 SMALL FORWARD TIERS (8-CAT)

Tier 2

Tier 2 SF

Tier 3

Tier 3 SF

Though it might be surprising to see LeBron James ranked at the bottom of Tier 3, considering his age and the NBA's growing penchant for load managing star players, this makes sense. The NBA is increasingly becoming a young man's game and that is evident with Jayson Tatum's ascension to the top of Tier 2. Last season, Tatum averaged 26.4 points per game and became the second-youngest player in NBA history to 60 points in a single game. As he continues to grow his game further, Tatum is almost a lock because of his offensive repertoire.

Additionally, Brandon Ingram tops Tier 3, as New Orleans' most reliable and consistent scorer despite Zion Williamson's paint domination. In the middle of Tier 3 sits Mikal Bridges and Michael Porter Jr. Bridges was an instrumental part of the Phoenix Suns' surprise NBA Finals run, on both ends. Meanwhile, Porter Jr.'s offensive ability can outright win head-to-head matchups, provided all the right pieces fall into place. 

To see the rest of our 8-category positional tiers, expert columns, sleepers and positional rankings for a variety of formats and all that our 2021 NBA Draft Guide has to offer, you can purchase EDGE+ Roto here for as low as $3.99 per month! And if you're into DFS and betting, be sure to check out our EDGE+ Max package that includes our DFS and Betting Tools for as low as $11.99 per month.