Welcome to the Week 19 Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Targets article. This week we get to sift through some of the rubble left from the trade deadline, and find players who can help your team.
While the trade deadline was the headline of last week, this week we are really getting to see the effects of most of those trades. Even though the deadline didn’t include any thrilling blockbuster trades like we had hoped, there was enough movement to unearth some options in your fantasy basketball league.
Most of the players in this list have had their roles affected by a trade, either sending them somewhere new or opening up minutes for a player who deserved to get off the bench. Players in these situations are usually great buy-low candidates, because the sudden shake-up gave them value they didn’t have beforehand.
In the final stretch of the season, working the waiver wire requires an understanding of the team you already have. If you are already playoff-bound, maybe it would be worth it to hold on to a player in a slump right now. If you are hustling to make it to the playoffs, you might have to take some chances on some trendy, fill-in players on a week-to-week basis.
The five players included will all be owned in less than 50 percent of leagues. In fact, this week they are all below 31.5 percent owned, but don’t wait because they could go quickly.
Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Targets
Shelvin Mack, PG, Utah Jazz (13.1 Percent Owned)
Utah has been a nice landing spot for Shelvin Mack, mostly because the point guard position for the Hawks is so congested. In Utah, he seems to have replaced Raul Neto for minutes, and he is making an impression. While Alec Burks eventual return could interfere with Mack’s court time, I doubt it will make too much of a difference.
In his first three games with the Jazz, Mack has averaged over 13 points per game, and around four assists. Those are probably the two stats where having Mack can help you out, and his assist numbers should go up as he becomes acquainted with his new team.
Lance Stephenson, SG/SF, Memphis Grizzlies (2.8 Percent)
Lance Stephenson has shown promise over his career, but has struggled to consistently produce. He was involved in a trade that sent him from the Clippers to the Memphis Grizzlies, and may have found a role that suits him. When playing at his best, he is definitely worth a spot on most fantasy basketball rosters, and is widely available across most leagues.
Stephenson is averaging close to 13 points a game since joining the Memphis Grizzlies. What’s even more impressive is his field goal percentage, which is right at 50 percent. He’s taken less three-point shots and has improved his selection, which may be helping his game. He is even averaging around four rebounds so far in Memphis. The goofy antics may stick around, but Stephenson looks to be a worthwhile waiver wire pickup in most leagues.
Justise Winslow, SG/SF, Miami Heat (20.5 Percent)
Luol Deng has been stealing the show in Miami lately, but rookie Justise Winslow has been increasing his stock on the team lately as well. Rookies usually need some time to grow into their roles and adjust to NBA basketball, and sometimes it happens later in the season. Considering this streak of success is already taking place alongside Deng’s stellar performances, there’s no reason to believe Winslow will slow down for the rest of the season.
Over his last four games, Winslow has tallied an average of 12.5 points per game. Throw in the healthy eight rebound average over that same time, and you already have enough to prove Winslow’s value. If you happen to still be skeptical, Winslow is even averaging over two steals per contest in those same four games. Pick up Winslow and ride those numbers for the rest of the season.
JaMychal Green, PF, Memphis Grizzlies (5.6 Percent)
Apparently there was only room for one Green in Memphis. The Jeff Green trade has opened the door for JaMychal Green to step into a bigger role, and he is proving to be a valuable player. We saw flashes of his skills while Jeff Green was still in town, but now that JaMychal Green has a solid role on the team, he is really showing off.
The stats are fairly up and down for Green, but he is averaging almost ten points per game over his last five. He is also bringing down almost seven rebounds during that time, and chipping in close to two steals and one block per game. With solid numbers across the board for Green, he looks like a worthwhile waiver wire addition for teams in need.
Ian Mahinmi, C, Indiana Pacers (31.5 Percent)
The starting center job for the Pacers has been a battle, but it looks like Ian Mahinmi is going to win out over Jordan Hill. The main reason for Mahinmi being the starter in Indiana is his defensive prowess, but with starter minutes comes opportunity for the big man, and he is showing he can score and rebound as well. There may be off nights, but if Mahinmi can hold on to his over 30 minutes a night, he should remain valuable for the rest of the season.
Mahinmi has received over 30 minutes in his last five games, and during that time, he averaged 11.6 points. His 8.4 rebounds during that same timeframe make him a legitimate double-double threat on most nights. He is averaging over a block per game, which is mostly due to teams avoiding the shot-blocking big man. Even so, he is definitely worth a look if your team needs help in rebounds or blocks.
Photo Credit: Erik Drost
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