Fantasy Basketball: Waiver Wire Pickups

Ayo Dosunmu averaged 17 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists in the Bulls’ season-opening win over Miami.

We just had our first almost full schedule of Wednesday night games and it was wonderful. We’ve had our share of surprises, big debuts and stunning highlights, courtesy of Paolo Banchero and Ja Morant.

But while these two are listed across all leagues, there are many players who have excelled or have the opportunity to excel in the future that you should try to win.

We’ll be following the same format we used last year, where each week we look at players to consider, listed in four different roster ship tiers:

  • 50-60%
  • 30-49%
  • 15-29%
  • 0-14%

Additionally, we’ll give you a breakdown of how many games each team has for the week ahead, so you can maximize your streamers’ minutes.

Without further delay, let’s get to that, starting with next week’s game plan.

Four games:

BKN, CHI, DAL, DEN, DET, GSW, HOU, IND, MIA, MIN, NYK, ORL, PHI, SAS, UTA

Three games:

ATL, BOS, CHA, CLE, LAC, LAL, MEM, MIL, NOP, OKC, PHO, POR, TOR, WAS

Two games:

BAG

Listed in 50-60% of leagues:

Jaden Ivey (PG/SG – DET)

Ivey’s performance in his first game is overshadowed by Banchero and Jalen Duren, but he still had 19 points, four assists and three steals. Ivey was looking good and it was encouraging to see him play 32 minutes in his debut. Usage was a little low at 21.3, but we’re working on a sample game. All in all it’s encouraging and it’s come as advertised.

Ayo Dosunmu (PG/SG – CHI)

Lonzo Ball is out for the foreseeable future, and we just saw Zach LaVine already miss the start with maintenance. It didn’t matter as the cops angered the heat on the streets, thanks in part to Dosunmu. The sophomore guard showed strobes last year but was promoted to point guard a few weeks before the start of the season. He played 36 minutes, which tied DeMar DeRozan for most on the team. Additionally, in his first game of the season, he shot 50% from the floor – 50% of which were 3-pointers. We’ll see the use creep in, but the Bulls are using him properly, putting himself on offense in the half-court and allowing his teammates to create for him. In their first game, Chicago had 107.8 points per 100 games in the halffield.

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Listed in 30-49% of leagues:

Santi Aldama (PF/C – MEM)

A national audience learned who Aldama was on Wednesday night as the Grizzlies defeated the Knicks in an overtime thriller. Aldama was one of the stars of the show, as unexpected as it was for non-Grizzlies fans. Aldama posted a career-high 18 points in his first career start with 11 boards as he played with confidence throughout the duel with Julius Randle.

Aldama mostly took over the corner three spot for the Grizzlies as he went 3-on-7 behind the arc. Watch for this trend to continue as the Grizzlies lead the league in a game of attempted 3-point corners (16). As long as Jaren Jackson Jr. is out, Aldama — not Brandon Clarke — is the beneficiary. Oh yes: He can also throw it down if necessary.

Isaiah Hartenstein (C – NYK)

In my trading advice I wrote that you should try to acquire Hartenstein, which I believe is the best center in the Knicks. After one game – albeit with Mitchell Robinson in dire trouble – we saw why. Hartenstein was a force offensively, slipped into the color for light swimmers. He led the Knicks in minutes played (40) and finished with 16 points and eight boards on 7 of 11 shooting. Even against a player like Steven Adams, Hartenstein was big on the boards with 15.2 fgOR%, resulting in seven of his eight boards being offensive.

Jalen Duren (PF/C – DET)

Perhaps no one increased their stocks more in one night than Duren. There were concerns about how much he would play early on as Dwane Casey doesn’t like using his younger players – let alone an 18-year-old big man. And in a way, that’s true, because the big man only played 22 minutes, but boy was his influence felt. Duren hit a three-block double-double (14/10) against Magic. It actually had a pretty decent usage rate (25.9%) for its debut, and apart from going 0-4 on the charity flick, it was a fantastic debut. The minutes may not be where we want them, but he’ll be a beast at 20-24 a night. pick him up

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Listed in 15-29% of leagues:

Jalen Williams (SG/SF – OKC)

Williams only played six minutes on his debut, but it wasn’t because the coaching staff didn’t try to get him grounded. No, it was because he injured his eye trying to block a Jaden McDaniels dunk. Williams still contributed in those six minutes, hitting both shots from the ground – including one from deep. He ripped up the preseason with a shot on goal that helped increase his stocks in the draft. It’s worth grabbing and should find its way to 25+ minutes regularly.

Malik Beasley (SG/SF – UTA)

Beasley must have missed the memo the Jazz tanked as he led them to a shocking fuss over the Denver Nuggets. The veteran is one of many like-minded players on the team who take a run-and-gun approach to their game. He played 24 minutes off the bench and connected Lauri Markkanen and Collin Sexton on 12 field goal attempts. With four games scheduled next week, he’s a good week-long streamer.

Listed in 0-14% of leagues:

Cam Reddish (SF/PF – NYK)

I don’t think anyone saw that coming. Reddish, after being a DNP since March 7 last season, came off the bench to not only play 28 minutes – his longest since he was with the Hawks in January – but also lost 22 points, five Rebounds, four STOCKs and hit the game – tie three to send the game into overtime. Reddish hasn’t earned the Knicks’ trust for some reason, and he’s just as likely a trade contender as he is in the league. Worth using while Quentin Grimes is out, but we know how much Coach Tom loves Thibodeau Grimes.

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Nick Richards (C-CHA)

It wasn’t Mark Williams who was the primary backup for Mason Plumlee on opening night. You know, the player the Hornets wanted over Duren. But it was Nick Richards who turned the heat up, scoring a 19/10 double-double in 21 minutes. Plumlee essentially shared minutes with Richards in the Hornets’ blowout win over the Spurs, but there’s a chance Richards could overtake the veteran as a starter with a few more performances like this. I’ll put him on the watch list now.

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Michael Waterloo is a featured author at FantasyPros. For more from Michael see his archive and follow him @MichaelWaterloo.

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