Who's Got Next: Courtney Lee and Love
Much of the waiver wire talk this week has been been more about the players who've returned to action than anything else. The first player to cause a bit of a stir this weekend was Kevin Love. The reports imminent return were all over the place, though it eventually came out that Love would return to action on Friday night against the Hornets. And return he did -- 11 points, 11 rebounds, two three-pointers and two steals in 24 minutes. Those savvy owners who were paying attention to the updates and were lucky enough to grab Love prior to Friday night's game got an instant double-double big for the remainder of the season. Those who haven't made the move for Love, well he's still available in 40-percent of Fleaflicker leagues and 36-percent of Yahoo! leagues. Stan Love's kid is a top 60 talent and an instant add in in all formats. Make sure you check and see if he's still available in your wires. It's hard to think that there's a team out there that doesn't need his services.
Now let's take a look at a few other guys worth considering this week, based on the schedule for Week Seven.
Allen Iverson, G, 76ers -- The non-Beach Boys related must-add this week is Allen Iverson. He'll make his season debut for the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night. He's obviously not the same impact Iverson of years past, but he should provide an instant punch to your scoring category. Remember that he's still a career 42.4-percent shooter and we haven't seen him hit threes on a consistent basis since the 2007-08 season. But it's safe to say that you won't find a scorer of his caliber anywhere on the waiver wires. Even if you aren't an Iverson enthusiast, if you add him ahead he could make for great trade bait. In fact, his name is probably worth more than his game right now.
Courtney Lee, SG, Nets -- Lee is my favorite add of the week. Now that he's back in the starting lineup, I expect we might see more games like Friday night's -- 27 points on 11-of-16 shooting, three treys, four rebounds and three steals. OK, maybe not that kind of production from here on out, but think of Lee in the same vein as we all did Leandro Barbosa prior to the start of the season -- 14-15 points, 1.5 threes and 1.5 steals per game. This week against the Bull, Warriors, Pacers, and Hawks you should easily be able to get that kind of production from Lee.
Anderson Varejao, PF, Cavaliers -- Yeah, I know he's not in the starting lineup right now, but he is playing more minutes than J.J. Hickson has been over the last six games. He won't give you overwhelming stat-lines, but at eight points, eight rebounds, and nearly two steals and two blocks over his last five games, you can't deny that he's once again becoming a productive member of the fantasy basketball community. In a four-game week those stats can start to add up. Hey, if your starting center is Chris Kaman or Brendan Haywood, you'd be better off with Varejao this week seeing that the other two bigs play just twice.
C.J. Watson, SG, Warriors -- Right now it's a fact that Watson has more value than Stephen Curry. Sad, but true. Over his last three, Watson has averaged 14.7 points, 3.3 assists, 5.0 rebounds, 1.3 three-pointers and 2.0 steals in just over 32 minutes per game. The Warriors play four times on the road this week -- Thunder, Nets, Bulls, Pistons -- so if you need a spark-plug add I see no reason why you would overlook Watson.
Vladimir Radmanovic, F, Warriors -- I really wanted to not like Radmanovic. I think it was partly because he was digging into the playing time of a few of the Warriors that I owned -- Anthony Randolph and Corey Maggette. But it's hard to deny that Vlad-Rad has some nice fantasy value. As a starter (eight games) he's averaging 10.3 points, 6.9 rebounds, 1.3 threes, and 1.3 steals in 32 minutes. Again, as is the case with Watson you have a guy who's going four times this week in an offense that allows him to open up his game. It pains me to say this, but he's nice add in standard leagues.
Martell Webster, SF, Trail Blazers -- Another guy who's tough to own, but worth a look. Webster is starting to show some signs as the starting small forward on the Blazers. No more are they going with the three-guard set, and in his role as the starting 'three' he's averaged 11.4 points, 4.5 rebounds, 2.0 threes, 0.8 steals and 0.8 blocks in 28 minutes. And twice over his last six he's exploded for 20-plus points. The talent is there. And while he may be a bit inconsistent, with four games this week -- Knicks, Pacers, Cavaliers and Bucks -- I'd rather Webster than the number of small forwards who play just twice this week. Caron Butler included.
Jonas Jerebko, F, Pistons -- The bonus Jonas! When a guy is playing as well as Jerebko is, it's always nice to hear his head coach say that his minutes are too valuable to the team and he should continue to play regardless of who returns to the lineup. He may not be at a standard league add just yet, but the 13 points, six rebounds, one steal, 1.3 threes and 53.6 FG% he's posted over his last three makes him worthy of attention in 14-team leagues or deeper. I'm having a hard time buying into the idea that his impact will remain at this level with Tayshaun Prince returning at the end of this week, but with a three game slate against teams with a defensive efficiency rating of 116.7 or greater -- at Philly, and home to Denver and Golden State -- there could certainly be enough touches to go around for everyone.
Tyrus Thomas, PF, Bulls -- His name is all over the place right now as trade talks between the Bulls and Knicks have been made public. He's still about 10-14 days away from returning, but with the immediate impact he can have on your blocks category alone you probably don't want to miss out on adding him. Consider this a call to "add him now if you have the room." You might not get a chance once we get a definitive return date.