As teams like the Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, and Phoenix Suns continue to deal with injuries, let’s take advantage of the value that presents itself in our fantasy basketball league. To find some of these hidden gems on the fantasy NBA waiver wire, look at stats from the last week or two rather than the full season. Rotations are settled in for now until we get closer to the NBA trade deadline. Injuries will force changes to these NBA lineups. Here’s what’s out there on the waiver wire as we head toward week seven of the fantasy basketball season. 



Caleb Martin F Miami Heat - 29% rostered

The Heat are one of the most banged-up teams in the league and even though he’s a little under the weather, Martin has been for the most part staying healthy. Since Jimmy Butler went down, he’s been a key contributor playing very deep into games and he’s scored double-digit points in five of his last six contests. Martin is shooting over 46 percent from the field and 39 percent from downtown. He’s pulled down five boards per game and he’s exceeded that number in three of his last five battles. With him taking on a huge burden in the damaged Heat’s mid-court, he has a safe short-term floor. He ranks second on the Heat in steals swiping 1.3 balls per game. Martin is a regular starter for Miami and we don’t know when Butler will be back on the floor.

Thaddeus Young PF, C Toronto Raptors - 23% rostered

Pascal Siakam’s return is getting closer, but Young should still be able to take advantage of his absence for at least the next week or two. Scottie Barnes has also been dealing with a knee injury and Young could play both at power forward and center. Young is s seasoned veteran who knows how to work the post and he’s never been the easiest guy to gain positioning on in the paint. He’s scored 12 or more points in 4 of his last 5 outings and he’s also been rebounding a bit more recently posting 8 or more rebounds in 3 straight contests. Young has also stolen multiple balls in four of his last five games. Seeing his minutes be in the late 20’s/early 30s is very encouraging and even with tougher frontcourts to matchup against upcoming against Dallas and Cleveland, we just saw DeAndre Jordan control the paint versus the Mavericks and Young has a little bit more offensive ability than some of the other Raptors reserves.

Torrey Craig F Phoenix Suns - 32% rostered 

Craig has seen his minutes rise as the Suns have needed a little bit more offense from their frontcourt with Cam Johnson sidelined. Craig could have some staying power in the Suns rotation even when Johnson returns, but he’s been doing a lot of the Suns dirty work, causing loose balls in the lane and he’s recorded steals and blocks in five of his last six contests. Craig has been scoring more with Johnson out and we should see him play around 30 minutes per game until Johnson is ready. He’s hit double figures in scoring in four of his last five battles and he grabbed at least five boards in four outings during that span. Craig is shooting an impressive 49.5 percent from the field and 43.6 percent from beyond the arc. He’s been an excellent fill-in option and he’s seeing more shots with Chris Paul out as well and even though we’re taking Paul’s injury game-by-game, he doesn’t seem ready and that will benefit Craig on the offensive end. 

Austin Reaves SG, SF Los Angeles Lakers - 21% rostered

It seems LeBron James is getting closer to returning to action and once he comes back, he’ll take command of a good amount of the offense, but with Patrick Beverley suspended for a few games, Reaves has more life when it comes to time with the ball. He’s scored 11 or more points in 6 of his last 7 battles. He’s been helping run the offense a bit setting up his teammates in the post and dropping at least three dimes in four straight games. Reaves plays 28 minutes per game, and he’s been hitting over 51 percent of his field goals and is even shooting 40 percent from deep. With matchups against the Spurs, Blazers, and Pacers coming up, Reaves shouldn’t have a hard time scoring in double figures for at least the Lakers next few matchups. 

Alec Burks G, SF Detroit Pistons-30% rostered

With the current active Pistons players, Burks sees a usage percentage north of 29 and after seeing him take 10 or more shots in 4 straight games, we can rely on Burks for scoring and steals help. Burks has scored no fewer than 15 points in 5 of his last 6 matchups. He’s produced steals in six straight games, and we should start to see his minutes rise as he continues to condition his body properly after returning recently from having a fractured foot. Burks has also hit at least two three-pointers per battle. He rotates on the arc on offense but isn’t afraid to take contact in the lane and even if his shots aren’t falling, his strong perimeter defense will keep him on the floor because the Pistons are very weak defensively. We don’t know when or if Cade Cunningham will return to action this season and with Cunningham having an unclear timetable to return, Burks could end up having long-term fantasy basketball benefits by getting more shots with Cunningham out of the way. He’s shooting over 44 percent from beyond the arc.

Deni Avdija F Washington Wizards-18% rostered

It will likely be short-lived, but with the Wizards backcourt hurting, Avdija has scored 12 or more points in 6 of his last 7 contests and until he cools off from the field, especially when the Wizards starters are a bit healthier, give him a spin for a couple of games. He’s shot 50 percent from the floor or better in 5 games during that span. He has handles and he’ll look to attack the lane and not spend most of the possession trying to create a shot from long-range. He’s been rebounding a bit more recently as well pulling down six-plus boards in five of his last seven outings. He’s even swatted away shots in four of his last six contests. We’ll have to see over the next few games if he plays as many minutes, but it’s still possible due to his recent success that he plays into the late-20. 

Marvin Bagley III PF, C Detroit Pistons - 33% rostered

Until Isaiah Stewart returns to action, Bagley will be in a major timeshare at center but he can play power forward if needed as well. Bagley has seen his minutes all over the 20s and we’ve seen him draw starts with Stewart sidelined. Foul trouble has hindered Bagley at times and Jalen Duren is waiting in the wings to grab as many minutes as he can off the bench. Bagley has scored at least 11 points in 5 of his last 6 battles. He’s posted blocks and steals in two of his last three contests. Bagley has exceeded his rebounding average of five in three of his last five contests and he creates a lot in the post and isn’t a floor-stretching big man. Bagley should continue to see an uptick in shots with Saddiq Bey also sidelined. Bagley is more skilled offensively than Duren, but Duren has played decent defense closing lanes and we’ll have to see how the minutes will be divided when Stewart gets activated. 

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