Welcome back to another week of Fantasy Basketball action, or better yet, welcome to another New Year as we ring in 2016.
This week, Derrick Rose got ruled out with a hamstring issue (we have to be concerned every time this injury plagued Bulls’ star goes down); Brandon Jennings made his 2016 debut (and now the Knicks are showing interest in him); and Matt Barnes bashed himself into self-relevance again by posting a heartfelt, mixed-feeling rant via Instagram on New Years Eve with some not-so-nice-words for (and we won’t mention any names…) singer Rihanna and Coach Derek Fisher.
Let’s start this New Year off fresh with some fresh waiver recommendations…
J.J. Barea, PG, Dallas Mavericks (ESPN: 36.8 per cent; CBS: 42 per cent): Barea is 31 now, people, but you wouldn’t know that looking at his recent stats (no offense to the vets still going strong at the 30 year mark). He made his way into the starting lineup and has been torching since — especially beyond the arc (five treys on Wednesday). It’s hard to find a solid point guard who’s also a three-point shooting gem that’s available on the wire this deep into the season, so Barea needs to be picked up now without a doubt.
Gary Harris, SG, Denver Nuggets, (ESPN: 11.9 per cent; CBS: 25 per cent): Not only has this youngin dropped double-digit points in his last four games, but he also picked up two steals in each of the last three. Harris has also seen a recent bump in minutes, and could turn out to be steal of a player if you could accommodate him on the bench in your deeper league formats. Hey, the kid is even the target of autograph hounds lately (see video below).
Mirza Teletovic, PF, Phoenix Suns (ESPN: 5.9 per cent; CBS: 15 per cent): Teletovic is another one of those guys that could do a lot with a little. He dropped 15 points (knocking three treys) in just 23 minutes on Thursday against the Thunder. With Jon Leuer out (ankle), Suns Coach Jeff Hornacek might look to bump up Teletovic to the four spot as a starter (although Teletovic again came off the bench on Saturday). Keep watch.
P.J. Tucker, SF, Phoenix Suns (ESPN: 27.2 per cent; CBS: 35 per cent): On Thursday, Tucker unleashed a season-high 22 points while stuffing the rest of the stat sheet with seven boards, three assists and three steals. His ability to contribute in multiple categories already gives him Fantasy appeal and he could be even more valuable with consistency and increased offensive production.
Frank Kaminsky, Charlotte Hornets (ESPN: 12.3 per cent; CBS: 43 per cent): Kaminsky is enjoying an impressive rookie campaign, and put up great numbers against the Clippers Wednesday with 20 points, four boards and a dish. With Al Jefferson (knee) out, Kaminsky may fill a nice role at the five spot if he could up his arsenal by adding some blocks to his low-post scoring.
Jeff Withey, Utah Jazz (ESPN: 3.5 per cent; CBS: 5 per cent): We last recommended near the end of his rookie season when he starting showing some life. Last season was a disaster for him but now that he’s on Utah, he’s playing more and even getting a chance to start lately with the likes of Derrick Favors (back) and Rudy Gobert (ACL) currently sidelined. Withey has a double-double Thursday against the Sixers (hey… that still counts even if it’s against possibly the worst team in NBA history). Pick him up if you’re in a hard up for a big man that can supply some points and boards.
Now it’s your turn. Let us know in the comments below who your favourite Fantasy basketball waiver wire pick of the week is.
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