The fantasy basketball playoffs are right around the corner, In order to manage all the injuries plaguing the league, you will need to address the fantasy basketball waiver wire and find some players that could help push your team in the right direction. It’s late in the season, so many players that could impact teams are likely already rostered, but there are always some hidden gems hiding on waivers.
Here are the top fantasy basketball waiver wire pickups for Week 17 of the NBA season. In order to be included in the weekly waiver article, players must be rostered in less than 60 percent of ESPN fantasy basketball leagues.
All stats are gathered on the morning of Apr. 18 and do not take into account Sunday night’s results.
Week 17 Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Pickups
Isaiah Stewart, Pistons (14.8%)
Despite coming off the bench all season behind Mason Plumlee, Isaiah Stewart has emerged as one of the top steals from this year’s draft. He leads all rookies in total rebounds and blocks across just 20.1 minutes per contest and is an almost guaranteed five-rebound guy, which helps in 8-cat and 9-cat leagues for a cheap rebounding option. Stewart’s recently emerged in fantasy basketball due to his three straight games of double-digit points, including back-to-back double-doubles. The Detroit Pistons are full of young guys and have no chance of seeing the playoffs this season, so it wouldn’t be too surprising to see Stewart get some more minutes as we close out the season.
Monte Morris, Nuggets (12.6%)
Usually the backup to Jamal Murray, Monte Morris has the chance to put up some solid fantasy numbers, with Murray sidelined for the rest of the season. He’ll split minutes with Facundo Campazzo, but does much more than Campazzo on offense. The Denver Nuggets run through Nikola Jokic, but Morris is a good playmaker that will average decent numbers as long as he stays healthy. He’s been dealing with some injuries all season, but with just Campazzo as the other point guard in the rotation, he should carve out a nice role. Morris has averaged 10.3 points, 2.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists across 26.2 minutes per contest this season.
Cory Joseph, Pistons (9.8%)
Another member of the Pistons that is consistent enough for a fantasy basketball waiver wire add is Cory Joseph. He is the veteran presence in the backcourt and a mentor for rookie Killian Hayes, but deserves some recognition for his consistent play. Over the past seven days, he’s averaging 9.7 points, 6.3 assists and 3.3 rebounds across 29.3 minutes per game. Some games he can be frustrating to own, due to his poor shooting woes, but he is usually a great option for assists and even solid rebounding numbers for a point guard. It isn’t likely he makes an impact for your fantasy team come playoff time, but as a streamer and plug-in option, he’s worth the consideration. Even with Hayes playing, he’s played at least 30 minutes in four of the last five games.
Khem Birch, Raptors (8.2%)
Since joining the Toronto Raptors, Khem Birch has been returning some solid fantasy basketball production. He’s been inserted into the starting lineup and has averaged 10.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.5 blocks. The Raptors are in serious need of consistent center production, and Birch should be that guy moving forward for the rest of the season. He’s played at least 25 minutes over the past four games, higher than his average while with the Magic. Birch is a great option for 8-cat and 9-cat fantasy basketball leagues for rebounding, but could emerge as a solid field goal percentage and/or points option as long as he continues to get the nod to start. If you’re in need of blocks, grab him, as he’s been on fire defensively over the last week and a half.
Other considerations: Facundo Campazzo, DEN (5.7%); Tony Bradley, OKC (4.9%); Saddiq Bey, DET (26.1%); Nerlens Noel, NYK (26.2%)