It’s still early in the fantasy basketball season, so no matter the league format, scoring settings, or players on your roster, there’s still plenty of time to turn things around.
We’re switching up the way we do things here at NBA Soup, specifically concerning our weekly waiver wire column. We’re still keeping our list full of players available in at least 51% of all standard fantasy basketball leagues, but we’re changing the apporach just a bit. Instead of just listing a bunch of valuable guys, we’re attacking specific categories, that way we can help people in various league formats, while still keeping it broad enough to apply to all types of leagues.
Read on for some major help in specific positions and categories:
Point Guard: Assists and Scoring
Jordan Farmar, PG, New Jersey Nets (Available in 87% of leagues)
Farmar isn’t killing it with a magnificent season stat line, but he still is available in most waiver wires and already has 78 assists on the season. When Devin Harris went down on Tuesday night, Farmar displayed his potential, scoring 17 points and dishing out four assists. With Harris getting and MRI on Wednesday, we’ll get to see first-hand what Farmar can do with the offense all to himself. Stash him if you can, and then monitor his progress, as well as Harris’ injury.
Guard/Shooting Guard: Scoring, Three-Pointers
Wesley Matthews, G, Portland Trail Blazers (53%)
Matthews should not be owned in this many leagues, so if he’s out there on your league’s waiver wire, it’s time to snatch him up. He’s found himself in the starting lineup in Portland, and with Brandon Roy struggling with his knee issues, his value can only rise. Matthews put up 30 points in his first start for Portland about a week ago, and put up another 26 after being re-inserted again on Tuesday. There’s a pattern forming here. Go get him.
Marco Belinelli, SG, New Orleans Hornets (67%)
Belinelli falls under the guard category, as he’s developed a nice little niche for himself in New Orleans after replacing Peja Stojakovic a while back, and firmly supplanting himself ahead of Marcus Thornton, as well. Belinelli is a great shooter with solid scoring ability, which his 12.5 points per game and solid percentages (over 44% from the field and 43% from long range) can attest to. He’s also coming in handy as a three-point specialist in fantasy basketball, as he’s knocked down 35 in 17 games, including at least two made three’s in seven of his last eight games.
Forward: Rebounds, Field Goal%, Double-Double Threat
Kris Humphries, PF, New Jersey Nets (51%)
Humphries narrowly made our waiver wire cut-off, which likely makes this the last time he appears on this list. Which, in turn, means time is running out on your ability to go find him in your fantasy basketball league. He’s a double-double threat when he’s getting the minutes, and while it’s hard to believe, this physical and fluid forward actually finds a way to score in bunches at times. His season line isn’t bad, and he’s regularly chipping in note-worthy efforts as a member of New Jersey’s starting lineup.
Center: Rebouns, Blocks, Field Goal %, and Scoring
Shaquille O’Neal, C, Boston Celtics (56%)
The dude is 38 years old, playing on a team where he’s about the 78th scoring option, and hovering around 22 minutes per game. Still, he shows flashes of dominance even at his advanced age, and can seriously get it done in fantasy when he gets the minutes. The old guy is averaging a decent line on the season, putting up 11.8 points and seven rebounds per game, while shooting a sick 67.5% from the field. He’s also scored in double figures in six of his last eight games, while recording two double-double’s over that span.
Utility: Balance, Versatility, and Steals
Thabo Sefalosha, G/F, Oklahoma City Thunder (90%)
Safalosha isn’t a dynamo scorer, and since he plays with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, it’s a safe assumption he never will be. What he is, however, is extremely balanced and versatile, and a Utility dream. His season averages appear pedestrain at first glance, but once you get past the weak 6.8 points per game, you’ll be glad to find his offerings of 5.6 rebounds, 1.6 assists, and 1.4 steals per game, all while averaging nearly 30 minutes per game and shooting over 48% from the field. He’s not a good play in normal leagues, but in deeper leagues, he’s a versatile box-score stuffer.