As the third week of the NBA season wrapped up, even more names were added to the injury report this week, like Orlando Magic guard Markelle Fultz and Washington Wizards center Thomas Bryant, who both tore their ACLs and will be out for the remainder of the season. In order to be competitive in your leagues throughout the season, you’ll need to work the fantasy basketball waiver wire to find some hidden gems to help fill that void on your team.
We’ll highlight some of those gems in our fantasy basketball waiver wire pickups!
Here are the top fantasy basketball waiver wire pickups for Week 4 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 Jan. 10 and do not take into account Sunday night’s results.
Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Pickups
Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic (20.9%)
Following the season-ending Markelle Fultz injury, Cole Anthony fantasy owners see a nice boost, as the rookie will receive more meaningful minutes on a team filled with talent and veterans. Even with Fultz healthy, Anthony maintained a key role in the Magic’s rotation, averaging nearly 23 minutes per game. So far, the 20-year-old is averaging 9.2 points, 3.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds. These numbers will likely increase, as he begins to receive starter-worthy minutes. It’s unclear how well he’ll play in the NBA as a starter, but he’s worth the add for now to see how Orlando handles his role and minutes with barely any other available point guards on their roster.
Tim Hardaway Jr., Dallas Mavericks (53.6%)
Despite always being a consistent scoring threat, Tim Hardaway Jr. has found himself on the bench as a role player for the beginning of the season. Dallas traded for guard Josh Richardson early in the offseason, but when presented with the minutes and opportunities, Hardaway Jr. makes the most of it. Richardson sat out a few games this past week due to COVID-19 protocols and Hardway filled in nicely, scoring more than 30 points in two of three games. Even as a bench role player, he still sees meaningful minutes, averaging 30.4 minutes per game this season.
As long as he keeps scoring, he’ll be a solid fantasy option for points-based leagues and a sure-fire start in 8-cat and 9-cat leagues, if you need scoring and/or 3PT shooting.
Eric Gordon, Houston Rockets (41.9%)
Despite plenty of new faces in Houston, veteran Eric Gordon is silently creeping onto fantasy managers’ radars, as he has been extremely consistent to start the season. He’s averaging 16.6 points, 2.6 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.2 steals in just 27.4 minutes per game thus far. That should only increase, as the Rockets are lacking guard depth. Houston is in a bit of a rebuild mode as of late, running quite a short bench to start the season. Once they get some more reinforcements, Gordon’s minutes shouldn’t be going anywhere with the way he’s been playing.
Bobby Portis, Milwaukee Bucks (33.1%)
Since signing with the Milwaukee Bucks, Bobby Portis is already averaging more minutes per game as a bench player than he did last season with the Knicks as a key role player. With Giannis Antetokounmpo sidelined with a back injury, Portis filled in nicely, with 17 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and four steals in 33 minutes against the Cavaliers. Despite being a bench option, that’s Portis’ fourth double-double of the season. Even if Antetokounmpo doesn’t miss much time, Portis will still see plenty of meaningful work off the bench. He’s a great and consistent option in 8-cat and 9-cat leagues.
Tyrese Maxey, Philadelphia 76ers (11.4%)
After hearing the news of Seth Curry testing positive for COVID-19, the 76ers decided to give their exciting Kentucky product the start, and he surely didn’t disappoint. In their matchup against the Denver Nuggets, they were without Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid, so expectations weren’t high heading in. Tyrese Maxey scored 39 points (18-33 FG, 3-8 3PT), seven rebounds, six assists and two steals in a whopping 44 minutes of play. It’s obvious that Curry, Simmons and Embiid will all be healthy sooner or later and return to the starting lineup, but one could imagine Maxey’s performance won’t go overlooked as we move forward. He should get meaningful minutes as a role player and is a sneaky add in deeper leagues for any team in need of a scoring option.
Other considerations for all league-types: Payton Prichard, BOS (10.2%); Josh Hart, NO (8.5%); Tyus Jones, MEM (15.1%); Austin Rivers, NYK (12.9%); Justin Holiday, IND (15.1%), Cedi Osman, CLE (10.9%)