NBA Waiver Wire: Week 24
Justin Fensterman goes around the league, providing players who are worth adding to your roster.
Remember; don’t only focus on this article because of the most recent players listed. Look at the last three or four waiver wire articles and use players from them as well. My goal is to always give you the most opportunities as possible regarding players who could be flying under the radar and can be game-changing pick-ups in the final week. Use the last few lists I provided as your target list. Teams like the Bucks, Pelicans, Blazers and Bulls are hurt and there are plenty of players out there that are walking right into a true rotation commitment of 20-plus minutes. As teams continue getting eliminated from playoff contention, they’ll start benching more of their regular starters. Good luck!
Bruno Caboclo F MEM-10% Ownership: The Grizzlies frontcourt is banged up and with Joakim Noah ailing from Knee pain, Caboclo has been seeing the court a lot more and he’s recorded double-doubles in his last two games. He’s seen 35-plus minutes in three of his last five games. He’s a long-range shooting threat and he’s recorded both blocks and steals in his last two games. The bottom line is that the Grizzlies are running out of options and they have nothing to play for and if Mike Conley sits, he’ll be a prioritized scorer. He’s improved his rebounding numbers a lot over the last few weeks grabbing above his 4.3 average in his last 5 games. He’s even seeing more games in which he’s seeing 10 or more shots. Hi defense has earned him minutes and he’s a good complimentary weapon to Jonas Valanciunas .
Shaquille Harrison PG CHI-8% Ownership: The Bulls continue to lose players and with Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn nicked up, Harrison has been getting more playing time and shots. He’s played 30-plus minutes in his last 5 games. He scored 15 or more points in 3 of those games. He’ll sacrifice his body while driving the lane. He can hit three’s, but he’s all about taking it to the rim and using screens just inside the arc to get open at the elbow. Harrison has been a prime defender and he’s coming off of a points/rebounds double-double. He’s grabbed at least five boards in his last four games. His steals numbers are also very impressive recording four multi-steal games in his last five. Lauri Markkanen is also not returning this season and the Bulls are running out of options and need to find ways to get inside so opposing defenses don’t wait for them at the arc and Harrison will be a big help forcing the ball inside.
Seth Curry G POR-30% Ownership: C.J. McCollum’s injury has given Curry life in the Blazers rotation and even Jusuf Nurkic being out for the season will open up shots for Curry. Curry has been on a scoring rampage in his last five games. He’s logged three 20-point games in his last five while scoring in double figures in the other two. Like his brother and father, he can hit three-pointers and he’s hit three or more in four of his last five games. Curry isn’t afraid to crash the boards and bang in the lane against bigger players. He’s got speed and he’ll find ways to attack the rim and draw contact. He’s played 24-plus minutes in his last 5 games. We don’t know when we’ll see McCollum again as his timetable is very unclear, but, the Blazers may want to hold him out just to be safe and that would keep Curry in the primary combo-guard role for the rest of the regular season. He’s also grabbed steals in three of his last five games.
Miles Bridges SF CHA-39% Ownership: The Hornets have proven lately that they have a tremendous amount of confidence in Bridges. He’s played 30-plus minutes in four of his last five games and scored in double figures in all of those games. He’s been a lot more helpful on the glass. Bridges hustle is incredible and it’s hard to stop him once he drives the lane. He’s been helpful on both sides of the ball as he can hit three’s while being a ferocious lane driver and he’s grabbed double-digit boards in two of his last five games. He’s hasn’t had a sub-five rebounding game in five games. Bridges gives the Hornets toughness in the lane. Nicolas Batum , Jeremy Lamb and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist are all better defenders at the elbow. Bridges can help guard the post a bit more and with Cody Zeller hurt, they need all of the help they can stopping teams from frequently going inside on them.
Robin Lopez C CHI-38% Ownership: Lauri Markkanen ’s season is over and the Bulls will need Lopez to log close to 30 minutes per game for the rest of the way. He will be the go-to player in the paint and his only competition for minutes at this point is Cristiano Felicio . Markkanen joins Chandler Hutchison and Otto Porter Jr. on the shelf and Lopez has scored in double figures in four of his last five games. Lopez has also grabbed four-plus boards in 11 of his last 12 games. Lopez has a few one-handed post moves that he’s seen a lot of success from using. He’ll also fight for boards unlike his brother Brook who will camp out at the arc for three quarters of the game. He’ll draw contact and get to the free-throw line. Lopez should be added by default because that is his exact situation in Chicago. The Bulls aren’t competing and most of the other starters are hurt.
Josh Okogie SG MIN-13% Ownership: The Timberwolves have nothing to play for and Okogie will continue seeing 30-minute games for the rest of the season as Robert Covington isn’t coming back. Okogie has taken 10 or more shots in 3 of his last 5 games. He’s a long-range shooting threat, but he fights hard in the lane on both sides of the ball. He’s scored in double figures in four of his last five games. He’ll grab steals on the perimeter and he’s grabbed them in eight of his last nine games. Okogie has improved his perimeter defense as he’s been given more minutes and he’s even blocked shots in his last three games. It’s quite simple! He does a lot of blue-collar work in the lane that most other guards won’t do. He’s a reliable player to add. He has tremendous rotation security. View any help with assists he gives you as a bonus.
Justin Holiday SG, SF MEM-34% Ownership: Like Okogie, Holiday has a lot of rotation security because of all of the injuries the Grizzlies are dealing with. If Mike Conley is held out of games, Holiday will essentially become the prioritized shooter and he’s taken double-digit shots in three of his last four games. He shoots a lot of three’s, but he’ll also help grab long rebounds. He’s grabbed four boards per game this season. Holiday will also provide help with steals. He’s good at reading screens and he’s recorded four multi-steal games in his last five. In fact, he’s coming off of a five-steal game. He doesn’t turn the ball over too much and he’s hit multiple three’s in three of his last four games. Even if Holiday is having a poor shooting night, the Grizzlies will continue feeding him. His defense keeps him on the court for 30-plus minutes per game.
Zach Collins PF, C POR-17% Ownership: We’re in a little bit of a wait and see mode regarding how the minutes Jusuf Nurkic left behind will be divided between Collins and Enes Kanter . Kanter will be the prioritized Center, but expect Collins to be involved in the rotation. The Blazers have played just one game since the Nurkic injury and Collins played 25 minutes. Collins has scored in double figures in his last two games and he can help spread the floor because he can hit three’s. Collins has blocked shots in three of his last five games. He’ll provide some rebounding help as well as he’s grabbed 4.2 per game this season. Al-Farouq Aminu is more of a slasher and Collins will be a good compliment to him. Expect Collins to play 20-plus minutes per game moving forward. Enes Kanter is not a good defender at all and the Blazers will put more stock into Collins if he can cause issues in the lane for opposing teams.
Damyean Dotson SG NY 31% Ownership: The Knicks continues to battle injuries and with Dennis Smith Jr. on the shelf, Dotson becomes one of the primary scorers for the Knicks. Kevin Knox and Allonzo Trier are also a bit banged up and Dotson has been seeing games playing in the 30’s and 40’s for the most part. He loves shooting three-pointers and he’ll multiple more often then not. He’s scored in double figures in seven of his last eight games and the Knicks have absolutely nothing to play for and he’ll continue to shoot and shoot even if he’s off the mark. Dotson has also grabbed 3.6 boards per game this season and that has to be accounted for because as a guard, he passed that 3 rebounds per game threshold and can be relied on to produce in the category in the majority of his games. Dotson has also grabbed steals in six of his last eight games.
WILD CARD PICK-UP: Willy Hernangomez C CHA-4% Ownership: As long as Cody Zeller is out, Hernangomez will steal minutes. He has played 20 minutes or more in 3 of his last 4 games. He’s not as much of a defensive impacting center and the Hornets are fighting for a playoff spot and that might benefit Bismack Biyombo a bit more, but Hernangomez has seven-plus boards in three of his last four games. He’s also scored in double figures in three of his last four games. Hernangomez can also stretch the floor a bit and he’ll get open three’s as opposing teams simply don’t realize that he can shoot from the outside. He’s left open at the arc all day. Hernangomez has also shown some life in the blocks category blocking two shots in two of his last three games. Zeller’s return doesn’t seem imminent, but if you see reports of him being “questionable” for games, be prepared to drop Hernangomez if his minutes slide.