Steve Alexander

Waiver Wired

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The Week's Top NBA Pickups

Friday, March 09, 2012


Forwards

 

Corey Maggette SF Bobcats – Maggette backed up his season-high 29 points with 25 points and seven boards on Wednesday.  He’s on fire and while he remains a big injury risk, the sooner you pick him up and plug him in, the more he’s going to be able to help you before eventually shutting it down for the season with an injury.  I picked him up on Monday and he’s carrying one of my teams this week in a highly competitive league.  The Bobcats finish up at 4-3-4-4-5-4-3, and if he’s still healthy for that five-game week, he could help you win a championship.  He should be owned in all leagues until further notice, and is averaging 21 points, 4.4 rebounds and a 3-pointer over his last five games.

  

Trevor Booker PF Wizards – Booker stayed hot on Wednesday with 18 points, a career-high 17 boards, a steal, a block and a 3-pointer.  Yes, Rashard Lewis is out and Andray Blatche is getting limited minutes, but Booker has been too good for too long to be ignored any longer.  And Blatche played just 10 minutes in his last game.  The Wizards go 5-4-4-4-4-3-3 the rest of the way, making Booker look like a must-add player for the upcoming week.

 

Alonzo Gee G/F Cavs – Gee started at small forward for the third straight game on Wednesday and had 19 points, seven boards, three assists, four steals, a block and a 3-pointer in Cleveland’s win.  In his three recent starts he’s averaging 17 points, five boards, 2.6 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.6 3-pointers.  Cleveland’s schedule is pretty good going forward at 3-4-4-4-5-4-3, and Gee looks like a very savvy pickup right now.  I’d bench him for the upcoming three-game week, but after that, as long as he’s still starting, he looks good.

 

Josh Howard SF Jazz – If nothing else, Howard has been consistent and healthy lately, scoring between 10 and 14 points over his last five games, averaging 12 points, six boards and 1.6 steals over that stretch.  He’s locked in as Utah’s starting small forward and is basically a must-own player as long as he’s healthy. The Jazz have five games in the upcoming week, and I’m rolling with Howard in that one.  They finish up 5-4-4-4-4-3-2 to end the season.

 

Kenneth Faried PF Nuggets – I love Faried’s game, but am concerned about Nene and Danilo Gallinari getting healthy.  He’s averaging nearly 13 points, nine boards, a block and a steal over his last five games, but had just five points, nine boards, zero steals and zero blocks in his last one, when he played only 20 minutes.  If he keeps his starting job alongside Nene, and they bring Timofey Mozgov off the bench, Faried will be worth holding in all leagues.  But if he moves to the bench, you can probably do better.  The Nuggets go 3-4-4-3-4-4-2 to finish up the season.

 

Steve Novak F Knicks – Novak was on fire for eight straight games, but cooled off suddenly on Wednesday when he had just four points and one 3-pointer in 17 minutes.  Novak could be yet another victim of Carmelo Anthony’s return, as he was consistently playing more than 20 minutes per game.  In his five games before Wednesday’s stinker, he had scored between 12 and 17 points, draining 22 3-pointers.  Points and threes are all he’s really good for, but he’s so good at them he’s worth owning in most leagues.  At least on nights when he’s getting more than 17 minutes.  I’m hoping for a bounce-back game against the Bucks on Friday.

 

Amir Johnson PF/C Raptors – Johnson is playing well again, but Andrea Bargnani will be back soon from his calf injury, which has to hurt Johnson.  He’s averaging nearly 11 points, eight boards and three blocks over his last four games, but a move to the bench once Bargnani is back would hurt his value.  Feel free to pick Johnson up if he’s available, but keep an eye on the starting lineup and rotation once Bargnani returns, which should happen on Sunday.

 

Jason Thompson PF Kings – Thompson is averaging 12.5 points and eight boards over his last two games, but one of those saw DeMarcus Cousins in street clothes due to food poisoning. The Kings finish up with a schedule of 4-4-3-4-4-5-3, and if your league uses that final full week of five games, Thompson could be a sneaky play.

 

Brandon Bass PF Celtics – Bass is averaging 12 points, four rebounds and a block over his last five games, but is also just getting healthy again after dealing with a left ankle injury.  It’s still sore, but don’t be surprised if his numbers pick up a bit going forward.  The Celtics remaining weekly schedule is 4-4-4-4-5-3-3-2.

 

Gustavo Ayon PF Hornets – Ayon is dealing with a foot injury, but is expected to play on Friday. In his previous four games, he’s averaging 10 points, 3.5 boards, two assists, 1.5 steals and nearly a block. The Hornets finish up 4-3-5-3-4-4-2, and Ayon will be especially valuable in that five-game week in some leagues.

 

Linas Kleiza F Raptors – Kleiza stepped up when James Johnson appeared to leave with a thigh injury and had 19 points, four boards, a steal, a block and a 3-pointer Wednesday.  He’s been inconsistent, but could get hot and help fantasy teams now that he’s finally over his knee injury.  The Raps go 4-4-4-4-4-3-2 to finish up.

 

Jason Maxiell PF Pistons - Maxiell had 10 points and 10 boards on Tuesday in another start, and is averaging eight points, seven rebounds and a block over his last five.  He's simply worth a look, but Jonas Jerebko could come along and ruin his value at any time.

 

Derrick Williams & Wes Johnson F Timberwolves – Despite coming off the bench, Williams is averaging 11 points, seven boards and a 3-pointer over his last five games, giving him more value than Michael Beasley.  And if Beasley gets traded, Williams becomes a must-own fantasy player.  Johnson is also coming on after going for 19 points, four boards, two steals and three 3-pointers on 8-of-11 shooting Wednesday. But he had scored five or less in three of his previous four games (despite starting), which is a big reason why Williams has been playing well.  Williams is the guy to own here, but just keep an eye on Johnson.

 

Chandler Parsons F Rockets – Parsons has been a fantasy tease all season, but has hit double figures in four straight games, capped off by Wednesday’s performance, when he had 19 points, four rebounds, two assists, a block, three steals and a 3-pointer.  The Rockets go 4-3-4-3-4-5-1 to finish out the season, and Chandler might be worth using in deeper leagues on those four-game weeks.


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Steve "Dr. A" Alexander is the senior editor for the NBA for Rotoworld.com and a contributor to NBCSports.com. The 2014-15 NBA season marks his 13th year of covering fantasy hoops for Rotoworld. Follow him on Twitter - @Docktora.
Email :Steve Alexander



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