Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: January 21
January is winding down, and the trade deadline and All-Star break is fast approaching.
Here are my five waiver wire adds for the coming week.
All stats and ownership rates are through game action on January 20 and entering the day on January 21.
T.J. McConnell, PG, Philadelphia 76ers
Over the last four games, McConnell is averaging 14 points, 5.5 assists, 3.8 rebounds and 2.8 steals per contest. That has coincided with J.J. Redick (leg) missing the last two games, and he is on track to be out until the end of the month.
McConnell looks like strictly a short-term pickup while the 76ers are a little injury-thinned in the backcourt. But the team does have a notable need for a traditional point guard while Markelle Fultz’s status remains up in the air. So there is an opportunity for McConnell, if he can fully seize it.
Yahoo! Ownership: 28% ESPN Ownership: 14%
Dewayne Dedmon, C, Atlanta Hawks
On Saturday night against the Chicago Bulls, Dedmon posted his second double-double (11 points, 11 rebounds) in the last three games. He has scored in double figures in three of the last four games, with double-digit rebounds in three straight and at least nine boards in five straight games.
Dedmon is being eased back in some after missing time with a leg injury, but it may only be a matter of time before he’s starting as he was before going down. He has also attempted at least three three-pointers in four straight games, so that’s potential for added value with more minutes.
Dedmon’s ownership rates is rising by a solid percentage, but there’s still ample room to add him in 12-team leagues.
Yahoo! Ownership: 41% ESPN Ownership: 24.1%
Jabari Parker, SF, Milwaukee Bucks
Parker is nearing a return from his second torn ACL, with his own stated target of “the first two weeks before the All-Star Game.” The game is Feb. 18, so that puts Parker’s target date somewhere around the first of the month.
A now twice-torn left ACL is a concern for Parker, but there’s no denying what he’s able to do when he is on the floor at full strength. Prior to being injured last season he was averaging 20.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game, and over the final 29 games of the 2015-16 season he averaged 18.8 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game.
With or without an IR spot to stash him in, Parker is well-worth adding right now in deeper leagues. If you’re hanging onto someone who should realistically be dropped, Parker’s eventual contribution is worth an upside add.
Yahoo! Ownership: 59% ESPN Ownership: 36.2%
Kelly Oubre, SF, Washington Wizards
Oubre underachieved over his first two NBA seasons, but something seems to be clicking now. Over his last seven games, he’s averaging 16.3 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.9 three-pointers per game (5.4 attempts per game) along with an uptick minutes (29.5 per game).
Oubre has emerged as Washington’s sixth man, and he’s been doing well for long enough to be a solid fantasy asset. There is some downside if/when he cools off a bit, but all it would take to is an injury to Otto Porter to elevate Oubre into a starting role. That’s enough for fantasy owners to at least speculate on.
Yahoo! Ownership: 43% ESPN Ownership: 22.8%
Wayne Ellington, SG/SF, Miami Heat
With Dion Waiters and Tyler Johnson out, opportunity has knocked for Ellington. He’s still coming off the bench, at least before his first start of the season Saturday night, but over his last 15 games Ellington is averaging 15.1 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game while making a shade over 40 percent of his three-pointers (9.5 attempts per game).
Johnson may return soon from an ankle injury, but Waiters is expected to miss the rest of the season after surgery on his own ankle. Ellington is sure to remain a prominent part of Erik Spoelstra’s rotation then, and fantasy owners haven’t quite gotten on board. Now is the time.
Yahoo! Ownership: 38% ESPN Ownership: 13.1%