Steve Alexander

Waiver Wired

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Wired: Top NBA Pickups Week 18

Sunday, February 19, 2017


Week 18 Games Played

 

3 Games: CHA, DEN, LAC, NOP

2 Games: ATL, BOS, BRK, CHI, CLE, DAL, DET, GSW, HOU, IND, LAL, MEM, MIA, MIL, MIN, NYK, OKC, ORL, PHI, PHX, POR, SAC, SAN, TOR, UTA, WAS

 

3 Stashes and Sleepers

 

Point Guards

 

Yogi Ferrell Mavericks 40 percent owned in Yahoo! leagues – We all witnessed the arrival of Yogi over the past few weeks and he’s still playing pretty well despite giving way to Deron Williams. Williams is as injury prone as they come and could go down again at any time. And when it happens, Ferrell will become a very hot pickup again. I’ll be shocked if Williams doesn’t miss another handful of games at some point the rest of the way.

 

Ish Smith Pistons 20% – Reggie Jackson could be moved this week and if the Pistons don’t get a point guard back in the deal, Smith could become the starter. If Jackson is moved and Smith does take over at point guard, he’ll be a highly sought after waiver-wire pickup.

 

Jameer Nelson Nuggets 26% – Nelson should be owned in a lot of leagues right now while Emmanuel Mudiay is out with his back spasms. And even when Mudiay is back, there’s a decent chance Nelson could hold onto the starting job. He’s averaging 14.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, 9.2 assists and 2.8 3-pointers on 49 percent shooting over his last five games. Nelson’s Nuggets have three games this week when 26-of-30 teams play just twice.

 

Others to consider: Brandon Jennings, Malcolm Brogdon, Brandon Knight, Ty Lawson

 

Shooting Guards

  

Josh Richardson Heat 27% – The arrival and breakout of Dion Waiters hurts the outlook of Richardson quite a bit, but the Heat are light on bodies and Richardson is a good enough player to still make some noise down the stretch. Waiters should be owned everywhere, but Richardson might be worth stashing for later on.

 

Ben McLemore Kings 13% - B-Mac had scored in double figures in four straight games before going cold on Wednesday when he hit just 3-of-10 shots for nine points. But he appears to be playing with more confidence lately, is getting 31 minutes a game in February and has scored in double figures in six of his eight games this month. He’s averaging 12.8 points, 2.8 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.0 steals and 2.8 3-pointers on 44 percent shooting in his eight February games.

 

Caris LeVert Nets 5% – I’m off the LeVert bandwagon and his tendency to miss games, while disappearing in others, isn’t fun to deal with. But as the Nets season winds down they have no reason not to turn the kids loose, and LeVert is a guy who could make some noise over the final month of the season. Keep a close eye on him.

 

Others to consider: Justin Holiday, Tony Snell, J.R. Smith (out until late March)

 

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Small Forwards

 

Brandon Ingram Lakers 45% – Despite leading all rookies in minutes per game, Ingram has been pretty bad, shooting just 30 percent from downtown and 36 percent from the floor. But as long as the minutes and opportunities are there, you have to think he’ll eventually get hot. Just be prepared for some really disappointing nights if you end up using him right after the break.

 

Terrence Ross Magic 23% – Ross had some decent moments in Toronto but now plays for the Orlando Magic, where he could potentially be a starter. If it happens, his ability to hit threes and steal the ball should make him worth picking up. But we’ll have to see what moves the Magic make at the trade deadline, as well as seeing what Ross’s role will be with his new team.

 

Norman Powell Raptors 6% – With Ross in Orlando and DeMarre Carroll struggling for most of the season, Powell could end up making some noise down the stretch. In 15 starts this season Powell’s averaging 14.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.1 steals and 1.6 3-pointers on 48 percent shooting.

 

Others to consider: Matt Barnes, Doug McDermott, Juan Hernangomez, Glenn Robinson III, Solomon Hill, Shabazz Muhammad

 

Power Forwards

 

Larry Nance Jr. Lakers 22% – Nance is finally healthy and is averaging 25 minutes over his last five games. Julius Randle is clearly in his way, but Nance will also get some minutes at center. He’s averaging just 7.4 points, 6.2 rebounds and 1.6 steals on 48 percent shooting over is last five games, but as the Lakers tank-fest heats up over the next two months, Nance has a chance to get hot.

 

Michael Beasley Bucks 24% – Beasley has gotten a big break with Jabari Parker done for the season and is averaging 14 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 0.8 steals, 0.6 blocks and 0.4 3-pointers over his last five games. He’s not a must-own player, but could be by the end of the month.

 

Marquese Chriss Suns 7% – Chriss has had trouble playing well on a consistent basis but has had a couple mini-explosions thus far. But he did have 15 points, eight rebounds, two steals and two blocks in 25 minutes against the Lakers on Wednesday, as L.A. continue to makes opposing marginal players look like superstars. The Suns have the worst record in the NBA and while they’re only 7.5 games out of a playoff spot, those dreams are basically over. Don’t be surprised if they focus on developing Chriss over the final few weeks of the season, which is why he’s one of my favorite stash options on the board.

 

Others to consider: Enes Kanter, Channing Frye, Al-Farouq Aminu, Terrence Jones, Trevor Booker, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Nikola Mirotic, Thon Maker

 

Centers

 

Frank Kaminsky Hornets 36% – Kaminsky has been killing it while filling in for Cody Zeller (quad) and it’s possible that Kaminsky has earned a bigger role going forward because of his strong play. He’s averaging 16 points, 7.6 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 1.0 steals, 1.2 blocks and 1.8 3-pointers over his last five games, despite shooting just 40 percent over that stretch. He hit just 4-of-17 shots against the Nets on Feb. 7 and 5-of-16 shots against the Sixers on Monday, so he has nowhere to go but up from here, as far as his shooting is concerned. The bigger problem is the return of Zeller, but given the way Kaminsky’s been playing, he should be able to sustain his minutes between backing up both the PF and C positions. And the Hornets are one of just four teams with three games (instead of two) this week.

 

Kelly Olynyk Celtics 38% - Just like Kaminsky, Olynyk has been on quite a roll, averaging 16 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.2 3-pointers on 65 percent shooting over his last five games. His minutes are on the rise and the fact he’s playing behind Al Horford doesn’t seem to be an issue right now. Olynyk has been my favorite cheap center of choice in DFS over the past couple weeks and he’s playing well enough to be owned in all leagues until further notice.

 

Alex Len Suns 32% – As I said above, the Suns are the worst team in the league and at some point you have to think they’ll pull the plug on Tyson Chandler. And when it happens, Len could blow up. He’s quietly coming on, averaging 12.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.5 blocks over his last five, hitting 53 percent of his shots. It’s time to think about grabbing him, even though he’s only getting 22.5 minutes per game over his last five.

 

Others to consider: Willy Hernangomez, Ivica Zubac, Kyle O’Quinn, Willie Cauley-Stein, Lucas Nogueira, Dewayne Dedmon, Salah Mejri, Alexis Ajinca



Steve "Dr. A" Alexander is the senior editor for the NBA for Rotoworld.com and a contributor to NBCSports.com. The 2016-17 NBA season marks (at least) his 15th year of covering fantasy hoops for Rotoworld. Follow him on Twitter - @Docktora.
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