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Waiver Wired

Wired: Top Pickups Week 25

by Steve Alexander
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Week 25 Schedule Grid: Games Played




2 Games: MIN, OKC, SAC


Point Guards


Quinn Cook Warriors 50% - Cool goes four times this week and has played well in Stephen Curry’s absence, averaging 16.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 0.6 steals and 2.0 3-pointers over his last five. And with the four-game week, he’s simply a must-own player right now.


Tyler Ulis Suns 10% owned in Yahoo! leagues - Ulis has enjoyed life without Devin Booker and T.J. Warren, and they’re both out on Sunday. Ulis has been crazy good, averaging 16.6 points, 3.4 rebounds, 6.6 assists, 0.8 steals and 1.6 3-pointers on 49 percent shooting over his last five. And as long as the Suns top dogs are out, and even if they eventually play again, Ulis still looks like a hot player to add for the home stretch. The Suns have three games this week.


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Trey Burke Knicks 43% - Burke has been hot for a few weeks now and racked up 18 points, 15 assists (tied career high) and two 3-pointers on Saturday. He’s at 22.4 points, 2.4 boards, 9.0 assists, 1.6 steals and 1.6 3-pointers on 53 percent shooting over his last five games. It looks like he’s going to continue to go off for the Knicks down the stretch. And while he’s not in this week’s column, Michael Beasley should also be owned everywhere right now. He scored 32 on Saturday and has scored at least 22 points in each of his last three games. The Knicks go three times this week and both of these guys should be owned.


Isaiah Taylor Hawks 5% - Taylor has been pretty fun in four of his last five games and Dennis Schroder has been shut down for the rest of the season with a bone bruise and Grade 2 ankle sprain. Taylor is averaging 15.8 points, 2.0 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 1.2 steals and 0.8 3-pointers on 48 percent shooting over his last five, which includes a three-point dud last Friday. With Schroder done, Taylor looks like a must-own player the rest of the way, especially with the upcoming four-game week.


Shooting Guards


Troy Daniels Suns 9% - Just like Ulis, Daniels has been rolling with Warren and Booker out, and they won’t play Sunday. Daniels has hit double figures in seven straight games and is averaging 17.6 points, 4.8 rebounds and 5.0 3-pointers over his last five. He’s not much more than a 3-point specialist, but he’s scoring the rock and is one of the more underrated 3-point shooters in the league right now. He plays three times this week.


Caris LeVert Nets 40% - LeVert is hot again for the Nets and filled it up on Saturday, and played well on Wednesday. D’Angelo Russell played just seven minutes on Saturday, as Kenny Atkinson chose to roll with LeVert and Spencer Dinwiddie instead. I think LeVert is poised for a big finish and is averaging 17.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, 7.0 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.0 3-pointers over his last two games. The Nets play three times this week.


MarShon Brooks Grizzlies 3% - Brooks has played in two games this season - Wednesday and Friday - and is averaging 22.5 points, 2.0 assists, 1.5 steals and 3.0 3-pointers on 15-of-25 shooting in just 19.5 minutes per game. Memphis has nothing left to play for and Brooks might continue to try to make a name for himself (again) over the rest of the season. He’s worth a flier if you need a scorer. He is a bit risky with three games this week, but I don’t see why the Grizzlies don’t keep letting him play.


Marco Belinelli Sixers 16% - Bello has somehow scored in double digits in seven straight games and only hit single digits in three games in March. He’s averaging 13.6 points, 2.5 assists, 1.0 steals and 1.8 3-pointers over his last five games, shooting 53 percent in 24 minutes per game. He also has a four-game week this week, which is the reason he’s on this list.


Damion Lee Hawks 1% - Lee blew up for 20 points, four boards, two steals and two 3-pointers on Friday and is now averaging 11 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 2.0 steals and 0.8 3-pointers on 42 percent shooting over his last five games. With Kent Bazemore and Dennis Schroder done for the season, and the Hawks not looking to win games, Lee looks like a pretty sneaky pickup right now. And the best news is that he plays four times this week.


Small Forwards


Bojan Bogdanovic Pacers 48% - The Pacers go four times this week and Bojan is averaging 19.4 points, 3.8 rebounds and 2.2 3-pointers over his last five, shooting 55 percent. With four games, I like him quite a bit, despite the lack of steals, blocks and assists on most nights. The Pacers play four games this week.


James Johnson Heat 62% - Johnson had a two-point dud on Thursday, but has otherwise been fantastic lately. He’s averaging 14.6 points, 7.2 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 0.6 steals, 1.4 blocks and 0.8 3-pointers over his last five, shooting 56 percent. Yes, Hassan Whiteside is back, but I still think Johnson will finish up strong and the Heat play three times this week.


Al-Farouq Aminu Blazers 54% - Aminu has scored in single digits in three of his last four games, but the minutes are still there and he could heat up again at any time. He’s averaging 9.4 points, 8.8 rebounds, 3.0 steals and 1.0 3-pointers over his last five, but is shooting just 35 percent during that stretch. If his shot gets hot again, look out, but he’s shooting it like garbage over his last four games (11-of-40).


Gerald Green Rockets 9% - The Rockets appear to be in injury management mode (James Harden, Chris Paul) and Green is a beneficiary of that. He hit the game-winning shot on Friday and has scored at least 14 points in four straight games. He’s not doing a whole lot besides scoring and hitting 3-pointers, but he’s also had seven rebounds in two of his last three games. Green has three games this week, but I’d clearly rather have LeVert or any of the other guys I listed in front of him here.


Kevon Looney Warriors 10% - Looney is averaging 6.6 points, 6.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.4 steals and 2.0 blocks over his last five games. The Warriors are getting healthy, but are still in minutes-management mode, so Looney could continue to get 25 minutes a night the rest of the way. He’s an interesting four-game pickup this week, with both some risk and potential reward.


Power Forwards


Marquese Chriss Suns 35% - The Suns have finally hit full tank mode and the Rotoworld poster boy for frustration has been cooking, averaging 13.2 points, 8.6 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.4 blocks and 0.6 3-pointers on 53 percent shooting over his last five. He’s getting close to 30 minutes a night and the Suns may be inclined to just let him do his thing the rest of the way in order to build some confidence for next season. Sure, he’ll probably burn us again, but it’s time to give Chriss another chance, even though he’s used up more lives than a cat this season.  Chriss has double-doubled in two straight, three of his last five, and the Suns have three games this week.


Kelly Olynyk Heat 60% - Hassan Whiteside is back, but Olynyk and Johnson appear to be ready to keep performing for the Heat. He’s averaging 13.4 points, 6.0 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.4 steals and 2.0 3-pointers over his last five games and the Heat play three times this week. I still like him, even with the return of Whiteside.


Anthony Tolliver Pistons 13% - Blake Griffin has a bone bruise in his right ankle and will be out for at least a week, although I’m not sure why he’d play again this season. Tolliver has quietly been rolling, scoring between 14 and 25 points in his last four games and hitting threes, free throws, shots, and is also racking up some steals, blocks, assists and rebounds. He’s averaging 17.8 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.8 blocks and 3.5 3-pointers over his last four. And With Griffin out and Stanley Johnson struggling, Tolliver could finish in a flurry. He has three games this week.


Jonathan Isaac Magic 4% - Isaac returned from a three-game absence on Friday and had four points, four boards, two assists, three steals and a block in 21 minutes. Maybe the Magic will turn him loose and he’ll finally break out in his four games this week.


Kyle O’Quinn Knicks 14% – O’Quinn returned to action on Saturday from a back injury and had eight points, 15 rebounds, three assists and a block in 32 minutes. Enes Kanter (back) sat this one out and his return would hurt KOQ, but either way, he’s an interesting pickup with three games this week.




Dewayne Dedmon Hawks 43% - Dedmon has back-to-back double-doubles and has double-digit rebounds in five of his last six games, with double-digit scoring in five of his last seven games. It all adds up to averages of 10.4 points, 11.0 rebounds, 0.6 steals and 0.8 blocks over his last five games, despite shooting just 42 percent. The Hawks have four games this week and we still haven’t seen them hand the full controls to John Collins, so look for another nice week from Dedmon.


Richaun Holmes Sixers 19% - Joel Embiid is going to miss some serious time with his orbital fracture that required surgery, clearing the way for Holmes to excel. Yes, he’s coming off the bench behind Amir Johnson (which I still don’t really understand), but Holmes had 15 points and seven rebounds on Wednesday. He backed it up with just seven points, three boards and a block on Friday, but there’s no reason that Holmes shouldn’t play better as long as Embiid is out.


Jarrett Allen Nets 25% - Allen has scored in double figures in three of his last four games and is averaging 10 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.2 blocks on 60 percent shooting over his last five. His minutes are still being held in check, which is annoying, but the talent is clearly there. The Nets have three games this week.


Cristiano Felicio Bulls 3% - Felicio went crazy on Friday with eight points and 16 rebounds (no steals, no blocks) in 27 minutes after sitting out on Thursday and not doing much of anything on Tuesday. The Bulls are folding up shop and maybe it’s finally time for Felicio to break out, but I’m not holding my breath. But he might be worth a three-game roll of the dice.


Larry Nance Jr. Cavaliers 50% - Nance has been disappointing in his time in Cleveland and Kevin Love is back, but it still feels like he’ll get hot at some point. Tristan Thompson has been outplaying him and Jeff Green is trying to, but Nance is still the most talented player of the group. Hopefully he keeps starting and starts turning it on. He plays three times this week, but if you trust Thompson more, I understand the thought process. Nance is averaging just 6.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.6 steals over his last five games.

Steve Alexander
Steve "Dr. A" Alexander is the senior editor for the NBA for Rotoworld.com and a contributor to NBCSports.com. The 2017-18 NBA season marks (at least) his 16th year of covering fantasy hoops for Rotoworld. Follow him on Twitter - @Docktora.