Working the waiver wire is pivotal to succeeding in fantasy basketball. With so many games, injuries and endless shifts in rotations throughout the marathon campaign, we'll need to source stats from free agency to maximize imaginary rosters.
A willingness to entertain competition for the last few spots on your fantasy hoops roster can prove rewarding. When curating this fluid collective of statistical contributors, it helps to consider your end-of-bench players in direct competition with the talent floating in free agency.
The goal of this weekly series is to identify players available in roughly half of ESPN leagues at each position (although we will make some exceptions). Some nominations are specialists capable of helping in one or two categories, while others deliver more diverse and important statistical offerings. In the breakdowns below, I've ordered players at each position with the priority of acquisition in mind, rather than roster percentage in ESPN leagues.
Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic (Rostered in 51.0% of ESPN leagues): While his clutch shooting can earn him national buzz every few weeks, Anthony has been showing up with solid lines nearly every time out for Orlando lately. The rookie guard has averaged 17.1 points, 5.1 rebounds and 5.2 assists during his past nine games, all starts.
Goran Dragic, Miami Heat (40.2%): This smooth Slovenian combo guard has been tasked with being Miami's lead distributor in recent games. The results have been fun for fantasy purposes, as Dragic has tallied seven dimes in three of his past four games.
PJ Dozier, Denver Nuggets (5.5%): Injuries to Jamal Murray and Will Barton have resulted in a spike in minutes, shots and touches for Dozier. You'll net some quiet lines, but it's tough to match Dozier's steady minutes at this low roster percentage.
Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder (30.0%): The holdup in getting too excited about Dort's ascension as a scoring force is how often the team seems to rest him. If you can afford to toggle Dort in and out of your lineup for when he's active, there should be some strong scoring and defensive results.
Lonnie Walker IV, San Antonio Spurs (9.2%): With Derrick White ruled out for the rest of the season and the Spurs in need of some perimeter shot creation, Walker steps into a bigger role. With 47 points across two contests over the weekend, Walker appears game for the opportunity.
Seth Curry, Philadelphia 76ers (44.5%): You'll endure some light scoring nights whenever Curry's shot isn't falling, but you'll also net outings like Sunday's 22-point opus that saw him make all six shots from beyond the arc.
Jae'Sean Tate, Houston Rockets (50.5%): With multiple steals in five of his past seven games and some solid scoring, passing and rebounding performances mixed into his game log, Tate is helpful in several categories.
Saddiq Bey, Detroit Pistons (28.3%): A promising part of the Pistons' season has undoubtedly been the growth of Bey. The Villanova product has warmed up after a midseason shooting swoon and should see steady minutes the rest of the way.
Kenyon Martin Jr., Houston Rockets (4.1%): Having scored at least 13 points in four of his past five games -- and with steady minutes in a decimated Houston rotation -- Martin has become a viable streaming play in deeper formats.
Kevin Love, Cleveland Cavaliers (49.4%): It's unlikely that Love helped you much if you drafted him, but now that he is a free agent in roughly half of ESPN leagues, maybe he can help teams for the final two weeks. Love is finally playing steady minutes, and while the scoring results are a bit volatile, steady rebounding and helpful assist rates drive his value.
Darius Bazley, Oklahoma City Thunder (36.8%): The Thunder are resting Al Horford the rest of the way, and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander also appears unlikely to return. This leaves tons of touches and shots for Bazley to consume each night.
Robert Williams III, Boston Celtics (54.1%): Back for Boston and ready to return to his helpful pattern of efficient scoring, elite rim protection and volume rebounding, Williams is a top target to consider.
Isaiah Stewart, Detroit Pistons (38.2%): Whenever he's starting, Stewart has averaged a double-double with elite block metrics. Given the potential for Mason Plumlee to rest often down the stretch, Stewart is an ideal stash.