10 Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Targets for Week 21
We're here once again to look at 10 of the most interesting players to emerge off fantasy basketball waiver wires over the past week.
As always, make sure you're checking out last week's edition (and the week before for good measure). We try not to repeat ourselves, but there are always some high-priority options to be found in previous iterations of this column who should still be on your radar if they're out there.
All rankings come courtesy of Basketball Monster.
Now, let's hit the wire.
Mitchell Robinson, C, New York Knicks
Yahoo Ownership: 65%
Mitchell Robinson is having a bona fide fantasy breakout for the New York Knicks. If you're in one of the 35% of Yahoo leagues where he's just sitting on the waiver wire for some reason, run and add him before you even read any further.
Over the last month or so (11 games), he's been the 11th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 11.7 points, 0.0 three-pointers, 9.2 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 0.8 steals, a whopping 3.5 blocks, and a mere 0.4 turnovers in 23.5 minutes per contest, while shooting a blistering 73.2% from the field and 73.5% from the free throw line.
The crazy thing is that he's been racking up these numbers in fairly limited minutes off the bench (his per-36 averages over that span of 17.9 points, 14.0 rebounds, and 5.3 blocks are just plain stupid). The hope is that he'll eventually get to start more games, but he's a must-add and must-start player in fantasy hoops at this point regardless of what his real-life role is.
Dwight Powell, PF/C, Dallas Mavericks
Yahoo Ownership: 35%
Over those three contests, he's averaged 16.3 points, 1.3 threes, 7.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 2.0 steals, 0.7 blocks, and 1.3 turnovers in a healthy 35.2 minutes per game, while shooting 73.1% from the field and 63.6% from the line.
He's been the 19th-ranked player in nine-category leagues over that span, and while that kind of early-round value isn't likely to hold, he should have a decent enough shot at mid-round value going forward if he can keep his new starting job. Dirk Nowitzki also joined the Mavs' starting five a few games ago, and since Powell compensates for some of Dirk's defensive deficiencies, the pair could very well stick from here on out.
P.J. Tucker, SF/PF, Houston Rockets
Yahoo Ownership: 45%
We've talked about P.J. Tucker a fair bit in this column this season, but he continues to have a weirdly modest ownership percentage, despite being the 81st-ranked player in nine-category leagues on the season as a whole, 59th over the last month, and 26th over his last five contests.
Over that five-game span, he's averaged 11.2 points, 3.2 triples, 5.2 rebounds, 0.8 assists, 2.0 steals, 0.6 blocks, and 0.8 turnovers in 33.0 minutes per contest, while shooting 56.3% from the field and a perfect 4-for-4 from the charity stripe.
Tucker has started all 62 games played by the Houston Rockets this year, always gets a healthy helping of minutes, and is a great source of threes, steals, boards, solid percentages, and low turnovers.
He doesn't score a whole bunch, but that can easily be made up elsewhere. If there's a good reason for Tucker to remain unowned in more than half of Yahoo leagues, I have yet to hear it.
Patrick Beverley, PG/SG, Los Angeles Clippers
Yahoo Ownership: 45%
Much like P.J. Tucker, Patrick Beverley's low ownership rate is kind of baffling.
Since joining the Los Angeles Clippers' starting lineup 20 games ago, Beverley's been the 34th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 9.6 points, 1.6 threes, 7.4 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.9 blocks, and 1.1 turnovers in 32.3 minutes per contest, while shooting 46.7% from the field and 82.1% from the line.
Sure, he doesn't score a lot of points, but he literally does everything else, adding value to your team in each of the remaining eight categories in standard nine-cat leagues. There's seriously no reason for him to be available in over half the Yahoo leagues out there.
Moe Harkless, SG, Portland Trail Blazers
Yahoo Ownership: 20%
Moe Harkless has had an up-and-down season, but he's been an early-round asset over his last six games.
Over that span, he's been the 41st-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 11.5 points, 0.5 threes, 7.2 rebounds, 2.7 assists, 2.3 steals, 0.3 blocks, and 0.7 turnovers in 27.2 minutes per contest, while shooting 53.4% from the field and 66.7% from the free throw line.
He's flirted with late-round value off and on over his four seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, but he's rarely been able to put things together consistently. He's on a roll right now, however, and is worth an add in standard leagues to see if he can keep this going.
Cedi Osman, SF/PF, Cleveland Cavaliers
Yahoo Ownership: 55%
He's only been the 159th-ranked player in nine-category leagues on the season as a whole, but he's been the 30th-ranked guy over his last six, averaging 17.0 points, 3.0 triples, 5.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.0 steal, 0.3 blocks, and 1.2 turnovers in 32.7 minutes per contest, while shooting 53.6% from the field and a perfect 10-for-10 from the charity stripe.
He could take a nosedive any second, but his role is solid enough that he's worth looking at whenever things are going particularly well. Stream him if you have a free roster spot, just in case he's actually putting something together here.
Kelly Olynyk, PF/C, Miami Heat
Yahoo Ownership: 35%
Over that span, he's been the 13th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 22.3 points, 2.8 threes, 6.5 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.0 steal, 0.5 blocks, and 2.3 turnovers in 34.5 minutes per contest, while shooting 64.8% from the field and a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line.
That shooting split obviously isn't going to hold, but his minutes are starting to get more consistent, and he could end up being a decent source of points, threes, boards, and decent percentages down the stretch. Hassan Whiteside's eventual return from a hip injury that's cost him his last three games could put a damper on Olynyk's production, but there's no harm in streaming him now and seeing how long he can keep this up.
Cheick Diallo, PF/C, New Orleans Pelicans
Yahoo Ownership: 15%
We like to avoid featuring players two weeks in a row around these parts, but Cheick Diallo is playing too well and is just too available not to get a mention again after being one of our top adds last week.
Over his last six games, Diallo has been the 41st-ranked player in nine-category leagues with averages of 12.7 points, 0.0 threes, 9.5 rebounds, 0.5 assists, 1.3 steals, 0.8 blocks, and 1.2 turnovers in only 20.0 minutes per contest, and he has a ridiculous shooting split of 76.7% from the field and 83.3% from the charity stripe.
He's well worth an add in standard leagues for his recent production, but the real appeal lies in the chance that the New Orleans Pelicans eventually get a reason to shut down Anthony Davis in order to preserve his trade value for this summer, and thus opens up more minutes for Diallo. Stash him if you have room.
Bam Adebayo, PF/C, Miami Heat
Yahoo Ownership: 30%
Over his last four games, including those three starts, Bam has been the 58th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 11.0 points, 0.0 threes, 9.5 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 0.8 steals, 1.8 blocks, and 0.5 turnovers in 27.6 minutes per contest, while shooting 50.0% from the field and 75.0% from the line.
He has some late-round appeal no matter what -- he's ranked 148th in nine-category leagues on the season -- but he's got a shot at mid-round value for as long as Whiteside is out, and that makes him worth an add this week.
Avery Bradley, PG/SG, Memphis Grizzlies
Yahoo Ownership: 25%
Over his last four games in particular, he's been the 35th-ranked player in nine-category leagues, averaging 20.0 points, 2.8 triples, 5.8 rebounds, 5.5 assists, 1.0 steal, 0.0 blocks, and 1.5 turnovers in 34.7 minutes per contest, while shooting 44.4% from the field and a perfect 13-for-13 from the free throw line.
The Grizzlies are barreling towards the draft lottery with little to play for from here on out. They seem quite content to throw all the minutes and usage at Bradley that he can handle, so don't forget that he's only a year removed from two-consecutive seasons as a top-65 fantasy asset back when the Boston Celtics were doing the same.