The key to winning your fantasy basketball league is not how well you draft, but the players you add off waivers. This is extremely important because securing hidden talent could replace those late-round selections that aren’t having the best season. Here at NFS, we provide the best picks for players you should grab off waivers now before it is too late. As always, both opportunity and performance are taken into consideration for these players. Learn to think like a NERD! Check out the NBA Player Consistency Rankings to see how consistent, good or bad, players are, determined by stats, not hunches or anecdotal evidence!
Alec Burks, SG/PG, New York Knicks
After Tom Thibodeau announced that Kemba Walker was going to be removed from the rotation due to his poor play, he also mentioned that it would be Alec Burks replacing his spot. This only comes as a boost for Burks as he’s already played stellar basketball off the bench for the Knicks. In his last 10 games, Burks has averaged 13 points, five rebounds, and 1.3 steals per game. All of these averages only come in about 26 minutes on average. Burks has also continued to be lethal from three, hitting about 47 of his threes. His increase in minutes should only give Burks more of a reason to be added off waivers.
Patty Mills, PG, Brooklyn Nets
With Kyrie Irving continuing to be away from the team due to his refusal to take the vaccine, Patty Mills has filled his production to his own best ability. Steve Nash is already trusting his to play about 30 minutes a night on average. But he is also averaging 14 points and two assists per game. He’s also shooting a hot 50 percent from the arc. He’s the perfect plug-and-play guy for Kevin Durant and James Harden. Until Irving chooses to come back, there should be no concern about Mills’s season outlook.
Monte Morris, PG, Denver Nuggets
As Jamal Murray continues to rehab from a torn ACL he suffered at the end of the last season, Monte Morris has been assigned the starting point guard opportunities to start the season. And despite his decrease in efficient shooting, Morris has still continued to be an elite playmaker for the rest of the team. Morris this season is averaging 11 points and four assists with only 1.4 turnovers per game. His role will likely decrease once Murray returns but he is still an effective player off waiver wires.
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, SG/SF, Washington Wizards
After being traded in the offseason for Russell Westbrook, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and company have shown to be better off from the trade despite the Wizards not being contenders coming into the season. KCP has put on another strong start to the season. He’s averaging 13 points, four rebounds, and 1.3 steals per game. He also continues to show as an outside shooter, hitting around 40 percent of his threes in the same games. He’ll be a critical three and D player for the Wizards for the remainder of the season.
Herb Jones, SF, New Orleans Pelicans
An undrafted player, Herbert Jones is already proving many wrong about his talent, especially defensively. It has continued to earn him more minutes on the court for the Pelicans. In the last 10 games, Jones has averaged six points, four rebounds, 1.8 steals, and nearly a block per game. He has also improved as a shooter, hitting around 37 percent from deep and 45 percent from the field. He’s certainly still a project player for the organization. But Jones has continued to see his minutes slowly increase throughout the first quarter of the season.
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, PF, Oklahoma City Thunder
Selected 32nd overall, Jeremiah Robinson-Earl is already showing flashes of why he should have been a first-round back in this past draft. In his last 10 games, JRE has averaged eight points, seven rebounds, and nearly a steal per game. He’s also decent from three, hitting about 36 percent of his deep balls. He still has plenty of room to improve as he’s only a rookie. But playing for the Oklahoma City Thunder and their lack of talent should give JRE plenty of minutes to be able to develop his game as a hybrid forward.
Daniel Gafford, C/PF, Washington Wizards
After a strong playoff performance against the Philadelphia 76ers, Daniel Gafford came into the season as a defensive anchor with a high upside for the Washington Wizards. He’s continued to live up to that expectation. In his last 10 games, Gafford has averaged nine points, seven rebounds, and 2.1 blocks per game. He’s also shot an extremely efficient 63 percent from the field. He’s been a great counterpart for Montrezell Harrell, a more offensive-minded center. It’ll be interesting what his role will be once Thomas Bryant returns from injury.
Willy Hernangomez, C, New Orleans Pelicans
Even with the upgrade at the starting center position in Jonas Valanciunas, Willy Hernangomez has continued to be a highly efficient scorer in limited minutes, 17 minutes to be exact. In his six games since the injury, Hernangomez has averaged 11 points, seven rebounds, and nearly a steal per game. He’s also shot almost 70 percent from the field in those same games. Unless he were to be traded, Hernangomez has the opportunity to provide simple but effective production for a rebuilding New Orleans Pelicans team.