Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: March 4
The calendar has now flipped to March, and the stretch drive of the 2017-18 NBA regular season is here.
The stretch drive of the fantasy basketball season is also here, so here are my five waiver wire adds for the coming week.
Note: All stats (trends, etc.) are through games on March 3.
Montrezl Harrell, PF/C, Los Angeles Clippers
There has been a case for Harrell as a waiver wire add for a while, and I’m finally on board.
Over his last five games, Harrell is averaging 16.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists and one blocked shot per game. He his field goal percentage over that span is over 69 percent, but it’s not that far off his rate for the season (62.7 percent).
Harrell is essentially DeAndre-Jordan light, which has kept him in a bench role as Tobias Harris replaced Blake Griffin in the Clippers’ starting lineup.
Any drop in efficiency will threaten Harrell’s production, but at this stage of the season he’s worth carrying as a depth piece on a fantasy roster.
Yahoo! Ownership: 20% ESPN Ownership: 12.3%
Allen Crabbe, SG/SF, Brooklyn Nets
Crabbe hasn’t quite had the season some envisioned he’d have for the Nets, but he seems to be finding his way. He is averaging 20.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game over his last eight contests, with 20 or more points five times in that span.
Perhaps most importantly, Crabbe is averaging double-digit attempts from beyond the arc (10.5 per game) over those eight games. That’s a significant increase from his season average of 7.0 attempts per game from three-point range, along with better success (40.5 percent over the last eight games, 36.4 percent for the season).
Crabbe’s value is defined by scoring and three-pointers, with only a bit to offer in other categories. But what appears to be an increase in confidence is a trend fantasy owners can latch onto.
Yahoo! Ownership: 52% ESPN Ownership: 18.3%
Skal Labissiere, PF/C, Sacramento Kings
Labissiere has played at least 25 minutes in all six games since the All-Star break, with double-digit points four times and at least nine field goal attempts five times over that span.
Coach Dave Joerger seems to be leaning on Sacramento’s young players more in that small sample, which is good news for Labissiere. He has 29 three-point attempts all season, with six of those (two makes) over his last six games.
Injuries have been a thing for Labissiere this season. But outside of another injury there’s nothing preventing him from playing plenty down the stretch, and he’s coming off a double-double against the Utah Jazz Saturday night.
Yahoo! Ownership: 17% ESPN Ownership: 5.7%
Trey Burke, PG, New York Knicks Emmanuel Mudiay, PG, New York Knicks
I’m doubling up on Knicks point guards, but hear me out.
Over his last four games, Burke is averaging 20.5 points, 5.3 assists, 16.8 shot attempts and 4.5 three-point attempts per game. He continues to come off the bench, but Frank Ntilikina has been shifted to shooting guard to make room for Burke.
Mudiay has started the last four games at point guard for the Knicks, and going back to his last eight games he’s averaging 11.4 points, 5.1 assists and 3.1 rebounds per game.
If you’re looking for across the board counting stats, Mudiay is a solid option. Burke has more upside as a pure scorer, so that’s where his value rests. Both guys are worth a look in deeper leagues.
Burke Yahoo! Ownership: 27% Burke ESPN Ownership: 26.9%
Mudiay Yahoo! Ownership: 17% Mudiay ESPN Ownership: 10.8%
Austin Rivers, SG/PG, Los Angeles Clippers
Since returning from an ankle injury (nine games), Rivers is averaging 14.0 points, 4.0 assists and 3.3 rebounds per game along with plenty of shots (12 per game). He has scored at least 17 points in three of his last four games, with multiple three-pointers in five of his last six.
Rivers has stepped right back into significant minutes since returning, with more than 30 seven times. With Avery Bradley and Danilo Gallinari out, and Tyrone Wallace sent down to the G-League, a high usage role seems certain as Doc Rivers looks to fill the void.
Rivers’ ownership rates have not risen much, but it’s easy to see that starting to change. Now is the time to add him.
Yahoo! Ownership: 52% ESPN Ownership: 30%