Lost password?

Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!


Receive free daily analysis


Already have an account? Log In


Forgot Password


Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Weekly Rankings
Compare Any Players
Starts and Sit
Daily Fantasy
Who To Pickup
Fantasy Updates
24x7 News and Alerts

Early Season Usage Rate Analysis - Fantasy Basketball

What exactly is Usage Rate (USG%)?

In the simplest sense of the term, it represents the percentage of team plays a player is involved in when on the floor, given the play results in a shot attempt (including a free throw) or a turnover. For reference, the average player typically has a usage rate of around 20%.

This article will highlight the early season usage rate of a few key players and discuss whether or not that usage will continue as the season progresses. Some players are in new situations and others are just being utilized differently. I will dissect the circumstances, and give my opinion and recommendation on how to proceed based on that analysis.

Upgrade To VIP: Win more with our NBA and DFS Premium Pass, get expert tools and advice from proven winners! Will Priester (@ChiefJustice06) from RotoGrinders joins the RotoBaller team in 2023-24 with his exclusive DFS picks, Prop picks and more. Gain VIP access to our Lineup Optimizer, Research Station, DFS Cheat Sheets and VIP Chat Rooms. Go Premium, Win More!

Let's get right into it!

Note: all rankings based on 9-category head-to-head leagues


Joel Embiid (PHI - PF, C), Current Rank: 39

2021-22 Usage Rate - 33.8%

2020-21 Usage Rate - 43%

As I'm writing this piece, the Sixers stand alone atop the Eastern Conference standings with an 8-2 record. As a team, they look much more balanced than a season ago with Ben Simmons. Maybe that has something to do with it, or maybe it doesn't, but the fact of the matter is other guys are stepping up for Philadelphia early in the season. Seth Curry, Andre Drummond, Georges Niang, Tyrese Maxey, Matisse Thybulle, and Shake Milton all look like really good complementary pieces surrounding Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris. That's great from a real-life perspective for the team, but from a fantasy perspective, it's a little troubling for Embiid in particular.

This season, he's averaging just 15.3 field goal attempts compared to 17.6 a season ago. He's scoring just 21.4 points per game. But with the lower scoring numbers has come more assists. He's taken on more responsibilities as a passer with Simmons not playing. On the young season, Embiid is averaging a career-high 4.0 assists per game. The scoring numbers should climb back up into at least the mid-20s as Embiid for his career has been a 48.5% FG shooter and this season he's shooting at just a 43.5% clip. The 33.8% Usage Rate this season, combined with the constant questionable tags due to his chronic knee issues has to be a bit concerning for fantasy managers.

Analysis - The 33.8% usage rate could be here to stay with the rest of the team performing admirably. Might not be a top-15 fantasy asset if this continues and he'll always come with his fair share of questionable tags due to chronic knee issues.


Kevin Porter Jr. (HOU - PG, SG), Current Rank: 199

2021-22 Usage Rate - 24.3%

2020-21 Usage Rate - 27.7%

Porter Jr.'s usage has declined playing alongside rookie Jalen Green, who owns a 23.3% usage rate of his own. KPJ struggled with inefficient play last season but was able to overcome some of that with his stat-stuffing ability down the stretch on his 27.7% usage rate. With the ball in his hands less, it's worrisome that he's turning it over even more (4.7 times) and shooting just 38% from the field this season.

Analysis - Look to move KPJ during the stretch of games where he gets hot and shoots a high percentage with low turnover numbers. His efficiency issues are here to stay and it doesn't appear as if the volume will be as prolific this season enough to mask those issues.


Ja Morant (MEM – PG), Current Rank: 48

2021-22 Usage Rate - 32.3%

2020-21 Usage Rate - 25.2%

Morant has been nothing short of spectacular to start the season, averaging a career-high 25.2 points per game on 49.4% shooting from the field. His usage rate is through the roof without Dillon Brooks on the floor. Last season, Morant's usage rate sat at just 25.2% playing next to Brooks. De'Anthony Melton has been fantastic filling in for Brooks early in the season, but he's not a usage hog like Brooks (26.2 USG% last season).

Analysis - It's going to be difficult for Morant to sustain this level of production when Brooks returns to the lineup because he's a guy that likes to operate with the ball in his hands. Recall last season Morant finished outside the top-150 players in 9-category head-to-head fantasy leagues. Selling high while his value has likely peaked might not be the worst idea.


OG Anunoby (TOR – SF, PF), Current Rank: 10

2021-22 Usage Rate - 25%

2020-21 Usage Rate - 20%

If you read any of my stuff this preseason, I was all over Anunoby as a breakout candidate. So far, he's outperformed even my lofty expectations, ranking 10th on a per-game basis. His usage rate is up nearly 5% from a season ago, but Pascal Siakam is expected back in the very near future, so expect that to decrease just a bit. I expect Siakam's return to negatively affect rookie Scottie Barnes more than it affects Anunoby. He may no longer average 20.6 points and 2.8 assists per game, but efficiency, along with impressive defensive stats, should always be there for OG.

Analysis - Temper expectations, but do not sell-high thinking that Anunoby will "come back down to earth" as a result of Siakam returning to the lineup. OG can still be a top-30 fantasy asset in 9-category head-to-head leagues.


Derrick White (SAS – PG, SG), Current Rank: 67

2021-22 Usage Rate - 18.9%

2020-21 Usage Rate - 27.6%

White led the Spurs with a usage rate of 27.6% last season playing without DeMar DeRozan. This season, his usage rate sits at just 18.9%, and he's still ranked 67th on a per-game basis. The minutes are up, and more importantly, the assists are up by a lot (5.7) compared to a season ago (3.5). He'll continue to produce in the defensive categories (currently averaging 1.1 steals and 1.0 blocks per game).

Analysis - The lower USG% is a combination of a couple of things. One, Keldon Johnson has a USG% of 25.3% compared to last season when he had a USG% of just 19.3%. Dejounte Murray's USG% is also up from a season ago and both of those guys are averaging more shots per game this season, contributing to those higher usage rates. White's assists are up, but his shot attempts are down thus far, suppressing his usage rate. There's room to grow here for White, which is why I'd be attempting to buy low wherever possible.


DeMar DeRozan (CHI - SF, PF), Current Rank: 15

2021-22 Usage Rate - 31.2%

2020-21 Usage Rate - 26.4%

DeRozan is averaging 27 points (50.6% FG) on 19.5 shot attempts per game. The last time he's taken that many shots per game was way back in 2016 with the Raptors when he averaged a career-high 27.3 points per contest. Despite the massive usage rate, DeRozan is averaging just 1.6 turnovers per game, the lowest since his rookie season. He's also hitting almost one three-pointer per game, up from 0.3 per game last season in San Antonio. Meanwhile, Nikola Vucevic's usage rate sits at just 21.5% early in the season. Compare that to his usage rate of 28.7% a season ago in Chicago.

Analysis - There's no way DeRozan can keep this up. Sure, he's scored 30 or more points in three of his last four games, but his usage and efficiency metrics are all-time highs on a very formidable Bulls squad. Expect his usage rate to drop while Vucevic's comes up a bit. I'd be doing my best to move DeRozan while his value is at an all-time high.


Download Our Free News & Alerts Mobile App

Like what you see? Download our updated fantasy basketball mobile app for iPhone and Android with 24x7 player news, injury alerts, lineup notifications & DFS articles. All free!

More Fantasy Basketball Analysis


Articles & Tools
Import Your Leagues
Weekly Rankings
Compare Any Players
Starts and Sit
Daily Fantasy
Who To Pickup
Fantasy Updates
24x7 News and Alerts


Demario Douglas22 mins ago

In Concussion Protocol
Noah Brown31 mins ago

Returns To Practice On Wednesday
Tank Dell36 mins ago

Missing Practice Wednesday
Emilio Pagán40 mins ago

Emilio Pagan Agrees To Two-Year Pact With Reds
Andrei Svechnikov56 mins ago

Doesn't Play Tuesday Due To Illness
Zach Hyman1 hour ago

Misses Tuesday's Game With Illness
Mark Giordano1 hour ago

To Miss Extended Time After Blocking Shot Off Hand
Jonathan Taylor1 hour ago

Undergoing Thumb Surgery Wednesday
Dougie Hamilton1 hour ago

Leaves Game Early Tuesday, Undergoing Evaluation
Kenneth Walker III1 hour ago

Unlikely To Play In Week 13?
Jacob Markstrom1 hour ago

Back At Practice Wednesday
Aaron Rodgers2 hours ago

Jets Open Practice Window For Aaron Rodgers
New England Patriots2 hours ago

Patriots Not Ready To Name Starting Quarterback
Baker Mayfield3 hours ago

Expected To Be Full-Go On Sunday
Filip Forsberg3 hours ago

Maintains Momentum With Game-Winner
Seth Jarvis3 hours ago

Continues Hot Spell With Ninth Goal
Connor McDavid4 hours ago

Notches Three Points In Tuesday's Win
Jake Oettinger4 hours ago

Posts First Shutout Of Season
Brock Boeser4 hours ago

Hits Two Goals In Tuesday's Win
Michael Carcone4 hours ago

Nets Two Goals Against Tampa Bay
Jamal Murray4 hours ago

Considered Questionable Wednesday
Kelly Olynyk4 hours ago

Questionable Wednesday
Jordan Clarkson4 hours ago

Questionable For Wednesday's Action
DeSean Jackson5 hours ago

Calling It A Career
Trey Murphy5 hours ago

III Listed As Doubtful Wednesday
Jonathan Isaac5 hours ago

Questionable For Wednesday
Cam Reddish5 hours ago

Likely Returning For Lakers On Wednesday
Anthony Davis5 hours ago

Probable On Wednesday
Mathew Barzal14 hours ago

Has Three-Point Night In Loss
Dylan Cease14 hours ago

Dodgers "Among Most Aggressive" Teams For Dylan Cease
Jack Hughes14 hours ago

Contributes With Three Points In Victory
Shohei Ohtani14 hours ago

Yoshinobu Yamamoto "Above All Other Options" For Giants
Akira Schmid14 hours ago

Picks Up Victory In Relief Appearance
Miami Dolphins14 hours ago

Dolphins Signing Jason Pierre-Paul
Juan Soto14 hours ago

"Almost Certain To Be Traded"
Cody Bellinger14 hours ago

Earns NL Comeback Player Of The Year Award
Liam Hendriks15 hours ago

Earns AL Comeback Player Of The Year Award
Anthony Beauvillier15 hours ago

Blackhawks Acquire Anthony Beauvillier
LeBron James17 hours ago

Uncertain For Wednesday
Draymond Green17 hours ago

Returning On Tuesday
CJ McCollum17 hours ago

Tagged As Questionable For Wednesday
Zach LaVine17 hours ago

Won't Return On Tuesday
Nikola Jokic17 hours ago

Listed As Questionable For Wednesday
Lauri Markkanen17 hours ago

To Miss Next Two Games
Keon Ellis17 hours ago

Available On Tuesday
Pat Connaughton18 hours ago

Won't Return Tuesday
Jackson Chourio19 hours ago

Brewers Discussing Deal With Top Prospect Jackson Chourio
Wendell Carter20 hours ago

Jr. Seen At Practice, Still Out Wednesday
Kevin Durant20 hours ago

Practices, Grayson Allen Absent Tuesday
Zach LaVine20 hours ago

Alex Caruso Both Active Against Celtics
Jrue Holiday20 hours ago

Derrick White Both Good To Go Tuesday
Fred VanVleet20 hours ago

Ready To Roll Against Mavericks
LaMelo Ball21 hours ago

Likely Facing Extended Absence
Aaron Rodgers21 hours ago

Not Ready To Play Yet
Kenneth Walker III21 hours ago

Trending Toward Missing Another Game
Jake Walman21 hours ago

To Return On Wednesday
Radko Gudas21 hours ago

Out Of Commission On Tuesday
Thomas Chabot21 hours ago

Expected Back On Friday
Matt Martin21 hours ago

Available Again On Tuesday
Curtis Lazar21 hours ago

Returns To Action Tuesday
Brandon Tanev22 hours ago

Out On Tuesday
Jonathan Taylor22 hours ago

To Have Surgery, Hoping To Return In 2-3 Weeks
Justin Jefferson1 day ago

Vikings To Activate Justin Jefferson From Injured Reserve On Tuesday
Jonathan Taylor1 day ago

Could Go On Injured Reserve
Tyler Glasnow1 day ago

Cubs In Trade Talks For Tyler Glasnow
Shane Bieber1 day ago

Cubs, Reds Looking At Shane Bieber
Kenny Pickett1 day ago

Experiencing "Ankle Discomfort"
Jonathan Taylor1 day ago

Status In Doubt Going Forward
Joshua Dobbs2 days ago

Vikings Considered Benching Joshua Dobbs Late On Monday Night
T.J. Hockenson2 days ago

Lifts Fantasy Output With Late Score
Joshua Dobbs2 days ago

Comes Back Down To Earth On MNF
Jason Heyward2 days ago

Reportedly Re-Signs With Dodgers Monday
Kenneth Walker III2 days ago

Listed As DNP Monday
Lucas Giolito2 days ago

Dodgers Interested In Lucas Giolito This Offseason
Steven Matz2 days ago

Available Via Trade
Tyler Glasnow2 days ago

Reds Showing Interest In Tyler Glasnow
Alex Bregman2 days ago

Could Be Moved This Offseason
Dylan Cease2 days ago

Braves In Talks For Dylan Cease
Jason Heyward2 days ago

Close To Re-Signing With Dodgers
Sonny Gray2 days ago

Cardinals Finalizing Three-Year Deal
Kenta Maeda3 days ago

Agrees To Two-Year Deal With Tigers
Johan Oviedo4 days ago

To Undergo Tommy John Surgery
Anthony Rizzo5 days ago

Doing "Great"
Shohei Ohtani5 days ago

At Least Seven Teams Linked To Shohei Ohtani




Rashee Rice - Fantasy Football Rankings, NFL wr, Draft Sleepers

Week 13 Half-PPR Wide Receiver Rankings for Fantasy Football: Rashee Rice, Puka Nacua, Nico Collins, Tyler Lockett, more

RotoBallers, we are coming to the home stretch of the fantasy football regular season with just two weeks left. The player pool for Week 13 will be slim compared to other weeks, with six teams on the bye. The Giants, Vikings, Ravens, Bills, Raiders, and the Bears are off this week. There will be tough... Read More

Week 13 Fantasy Football Start/Sit Analysis: Wide Receiver, Quarterback Booms and Busts

Check out our top 2023 fantasy football Start/Sit analysis for Week 13 of the NFL season! Matt Donnelly discusses his top Start/Sit decisions at the Wide Receiver and Quarterback positions that will have an impact in Week 13. The 2023 fantasy football season is here - win big with RotoBaller in 2023! Be sure to... Read More

Zack Moss - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Week 13 Half-PPR Running Back Rankings for Fantasy Football: Zack Moss, Kyren Williams, Joe Mixon, James Conner, more

Welcome back, RotoBallers, to more fantasy football rankings. Amazingly, Week 13 is already here. There are only two weeks left in the fantasy football regular season, so it's time to set those winning lineups and make that final push for the fantasy playoffs. We are here as always to help you guide you and are... Read More

Jaguars Defense - Fantasy Football DST, Defense Streamers, Waiver Wire IDP

Week 13 Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts - 2023 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

Week 12 is now in the books leaving the majority of fantasy leagues with only two regular-season games remaining. We also move on from another plentiful week with no byes directly into a week with six teams on bye. Playoff spots in many leagues will be decided this week, as well as playoff seeding and... Read More

Zack Moss - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Fantasy Football Matchups to Target, Avoid (Week 13) - Offensive Line Champs and Chumps

The fantasy playoffs are just around the corner and every week matters. Teams who have already locked up a playoff spot need to keep optimizing their roster to push for a championship. Teams on the cusp of earning a playoff bid need to secure crucial wins to stay alive. Finding an edge in matchups can... Read More

Tyler Higbee - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Are You For Real? Jordan Love, Rashee Rice, Tyler Higbee - Fantasy Football Outlooks

Week 12 of the NFL is behind us and it's time to look ahead to next week's action. There were some surprising performances in the 10th week of the season, but were those surprising performances a sign of things to come for players? Every week, I'll be looking at three to five NFL players whose... Read More

Kyren Williams - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Updated Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

      Fantasy Football Rankings by NFL Position ALL - QB - RB - WR - TE - DEF Above you will find all of RotoBaller's fantasy football rankings, tiers, player news and stats for your 2023 fantasy football leagues. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's fantasy football rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Fantasy Football... Read More

Zach Charbonnet - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL DFS and Betting Picks

Sleeper.com NFL DFS Prop Picks - Over/Under Props for Week 13 Thursday Night Football

Welcome to our Sleeper NFL DFS prop picks for Week 13 Thursday Night Football: Seahawks vs. Cowboys. Each week we’ll highlight three top props for Thursday’s game and track how our picks do over time.  Sleeper offers some of the best and easiest-to-win NFL DFS games in the industry. Sleeper DFS works just like regular... Read More

Pat Freiermuth - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers - Week 13

12 weeks down, just a couple more weeks to go until the fantasy football playoffs. Your league's trade deadline may have passed, but it's still important to understand key risers and fallers to see who you may want to start and sit in the coming weeks based on new information. In this weekly column, we'll... Read More

Jonathan Taylor - Fantasy Football Rankings, NFL Injury News, DFS Lineup Picks

Fantasy Football Injury Reports For NFL RBs: Week 13 Updates for Jonathan Taylor, Kenneth Walker III, De'Von Achane, Rico Dowdle

Below you will find our fantasy football injuries report for running backs in Week 13, as of November 29. The injury statuses for various NFL running backs are up in the air for Week 13, including Jonathan Taylor, Kenneth Walker III, De'Von Achane, and Rico Dowdle. As the fantasy football season continues, every decision, transaction,... Read More

Chris Olave - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, NFL Injury News

Fantasy Football Injury Reports for NFL WRs: Week 13 Updates for Chris Olave, Justin Jefferson, Tee Higgins, Amari Cooper, and Demario Douglas

Week 12 was a rough week for fantasy managers. Not only did Justin Jefferson not get clearance to return, but neither did Tee Higgins. There were also several receivers who got knocked out of their respective contests to leave fantasy managers hanging. There are six teams on bye this week. The Ravens, Bills, Vikings, Giants,... Read More

Jeff Wilson Jr. - Fantasy Football Rankings, Draft Sleepers, Waiver Wire Pickups

Week 13 Waiver Wire Rankings - Fantasy Football Pickups Include Zack Moss, Greg Dortch, Jayden Reed, Pat Freiermuth, more

Hey, RotoBallers! Week 13 has arrived, and it's "byemageddon" as six teams are on the bye. Fantasy managers could be scrambling for replacements as the Ravens, Vikings, Bears, Raiders, Bills, and Giants are off this week. At RotoBaller, we have always got you covered and are here to help guide you through the bye gauntlet... Read More

Roschon Johnson - Fantasy Football Rankings, Waiver Wire Pickups, Draft Sleepers

Fantasy Football Week 13 Waiver Wire Pickups - Best Free Agent Adds Include Jordan Love, Roschon Johnson, Joshua Palmer, more

Welcome everyone to the fantasy football Week 13 waiver wire! I’m here as always to help you make the best fantasy waiver pickups for Week 13. There are a lot of other quality players to look at adding this week on the waiver wire. This article is challenging to make relevant to all the different... Read More