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!
Justin Holiday, SG/SF, Indiana Pacers
An eight-year veteran, Justin Holiday is a proven 3 and D wing player for any team he plays for. His best seasons have come with the Indiana Pacers the last handful of years. Even with constant injuries to the Pacers, Holiday has still proven to be consistent and a decent option off waivers. In his last 10 games, Holiday has averaged 13 points while shooting nearly 40 percent from deep. He could be trade bait in the future if the Pacers choose to tank at the trade deadline. But his role should stay consistent with whatever team he plays for next.
Ayo Dosunmu, SG, Chicago Bulls
With Lonzo Ball expected to miss multiple weeks after undergoing knee surgery, Ayo Dosunmu is one of Chicago’s many options to fill his role. A first-round rookie, Dosunmu has become a critical player off the bench when the Bulls are fully healthy. In his last 10 games, Dosunmu has averaged 11 points, four assists, and a steal per game. But he’s averaged almost 14 points since moving into the starting lineup. He’s continued to be elite from beyond the arc, hitting 50 percent from three in the starting lineup. Dosunmu is turning into a quality steal in the draft after an excellent college career at Illinois.
Chris Duarte, SG, Indiana Pacers
Late lottery pick of this year, Oregon’s Chris Duarte has been a pleasant surprise this season. After a hot start, he slowly cooled off his production but has picked it back up since coming back from injury. In the last five games, Duarte has averaged 17 points, five rebounds, two assists, and two steals a game. He’s also been lethal from deep, hitting nearly 40 percent of his three-point attempts. Duarte continues to look like a solid steal in the draft for the Pacers who continue to struggle to turn the corner to a championship squad.
Otto Porter Jr., SF, Golden State Warriors
Once the third overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, Otto Porter Jr. has seen his role be reduced since he was traded from the Washington Wizards. He’s been a vital bench player for the Golden State Warriors as they return to championship form. In his last 10 games, Porter has averaged nine points, six rebounds, and nearly two steals per game. He’s also been shooting like the third splash brother, making around 41 percent of his threes. His role should be consistent for the rest of the season as long as he can stay healthy, a struggle he’s had throughout the year.
Aaron Gordon, SF/PF, Denver Nuggets
After signing a controversial extension with the Denver Nuggets, injuries to Michael Porter Jr. and Jamal Murrayhave forced Aaron Gordon to become a much more important scoring option for the Nuggets to compete as contenders. In his last 10 games, Gordon has averaged 15 points, six rebounds, and four assists per game. He’s shown some improvement on his three-point shooting, hitting around 36 percent in the same games. But until Murray comes back, Gordon will be a quality player off waivers. And even then, he still may be worth holding onto.
Chuma Okeke, PF, Orlando Magic
An underrated player for the Orlando Magic, Chuma Okeke has a lot of raw talent after being selected in the middle of the first round in 2019. In his last 10 games, Okeke has averaged eight points, six rebounds, and 1.7 steals per game. He’s also shown some good improvement with his three-point shooting, knocking down 39 percent of his attempts. He needs to improve on his consistency but Okeke is still a solid prospect with some great upside to be a key contributor for the Magic in the future.
Kevon Looney, PF/C, Golden State Warriors
Once a top recruit out of high school, it’s safe to say Kevon Looney has failed to capitalize on his true potential. However, he’s still been a quality big man for the Golden State Warriors. He’s also seen a boost in minutes since James Wiseman has yet to come back from off-season surgery. In his last 10 games, Looney has averaged seven points, 11 rebounds, and nearly a steal and a block per game. He’s also averaged more than four offensive rebounds a game in that stretch. And he’s shot around 57 percent from the field as well. He could be vital for the rest of the season if Wiseman were to be ruled out for the season.
Goga Bitadze, C, Indiana Pacers
With Domantas Sabonis going with an injury that could force him to miss a few games, prospect Goga Bitadze could finally get his chance to show his potential. He’s been buried in the depth chart since first being drafted by the Pacers in 2019. But in his last four games, Bitadze has averaged 12 points, seven rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game. He still has a lot of raw ability to polish. But Bitadze could have a successful season if either Sabonis or Myles Turner were to be traded at the trade deadline.