We’re a quarter of the way through the NBA season, and let’s talk about some fantasy waiver pickups for Week 7.
I’ll break down several players who are rostered in less than 50% of Yahoo fantasy basketball leagues and include several guys on my watchlist that may end up being streamable now or in the near future.
But before we get to this week’s waiver pickups, here are the games played by each team in Week 7.
Four games: Bulls, Cavaliers, Celtics, Jazz, Kings, Knicks, Lakers, Magic, Nets, Nuggets, Pacers, Pelicans, Raptors, Rockets, Suns, Trail Blazers and Wizards
Three games: 76ers, Bucks, Clippers, Grizzlies, Hawks, Hornets, Mavericks, Pistons, Spurs, Timberwolves, Thunder and Warriors
Two games: Heat
Okay, now that you know when teams play and when it might be best to utilize them, let’s get to the pickups.
There’s a non-zero chance that Trey Murphy hit waivers out of desperation last week. He sustained a foot injury on November 18th, which cost him a couple of games, but he was able to return to the lineup on Friday night.
And he looked great, dropping 21 points (7-14 FG, 6-7 FT, 1-6 3PT) with three rebounds, one assist and one steal in 26 minutes.
The most important news is that Brandon Ingram (toe) has been ruled out for Monday’s contest, and there’s no clear indication of when he’ll be able to return. Murphy came off the bench on Friday, but with Ingram injured, he’ll likely move back into the starting lineup. The Pelicans play four games this week and have pretty fantasy-friendly opponents in three of the four games (Thunder, Spurs and Nuggets), so Murphy should have a successful week ahead.
Advice: Add and hold in all 10 and 12-team H2H leagues
Seth Curry – PG/SG, Brooklyn Nets (36% rostered)
The actual Splash Brother remains a reliable source of threes and points coming off the bench for the Brooklyn Nets this season. Seth Curry is finally over an ankle injury that cost him nine games this season, and he’s rounding into form just as the Nets are.
In his previous four games, Curry averaged 16.8 points, 3.0 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 3.3 3PM with 0.5 steals and 0.5 blocks across 26.3 minutes per contest. His efficiency has also been stellar, posting 56.5/50/93 shooting splits over that span.
He’ll continue to be a trusted spot-up shooter and ball handler for the second unit, and with four games in Week 7, Curry will be a worthwhile addition for fantasy managers needing a boost in threes and scoring.
Advice: Add in H2H leagues this week
Alec Burks – PG/SG/SF, Detroit Pistons (34% rostered)
If you’re looking for scoring off waivers, make sure to grab it Alec Burks. The versatile guard has only played in six games for the Pistons so far, but he’s making an impact. He’s averaging 16.7 points per game in under 22 minutes per contest. And his usage rate is almost 29%! He also can help your free-throw percentage, as he’s going to the line 6.2 times per game (career-high) while converting them at an 82% clip.
He’s averaging 0.79 points per minute this season, which ranks 11th in the NBA among players who played at least nine games this season, and all of the names ahead of him are perennial All-Stars.
He’s playing 57% of his minutes at SF and 43% at SG, so fantasy managers get the bonus of Burks’ having PG eligibility. The Pistons play three games this week, with two of the three games falling on the lighter Tuesday and Thursday slates. As long as he remains a focal point of the second unit, he’ll be helpful for fantasy managers who need points, threes, free-throw percentage and steals.
Advice: Stream in 12 team points and H2H leagues for Week 7
The Heat are still riddled with injuries, and Caleb Martin was huge for fantasy managers in Week 6. Hopefully, you were able to grab him before his breakout week, but if not, there may still be an opportunity.
The Heat only played two games in Week 7, and they fell on Wednesday and Friday. So, anyone rostering Caleb Martin that’s down mid-to-late in the week may have to send him to waivers. And if that happens, I’d scoop him up for Week 8. The Heat will have four games, including a Monday/Tuesday back-to-back set.
There’s a possibility that Jimmy Butler will return to the lineup at some point during the Heat’s four-game road trip, but that’s not set in stone. Martin played 38.8 minutes per game over his last five contests and contributed 17.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.8 3PM, 1.6 steals and 0.6 blocks. He provided second-round value to fantasy managers in Week 6 and is worth holding for the foreseeable future. Even when Jimmy Butler returns, Martin will be a solid source of stocks and threes as he earned close to 30 minutes a night with Butler in the lineup.
Advice: Add and hold in 12 team H2H leagues
The former ninth pick of the 2020 NBA Draft is finally showing signs of life in his third NBA season. Deni Avdija’s numbers are eerily similar to last season, but he’s been more effective as a fantasy player recently. He’s been doing a mix of everything over his previous 10 games, putting up 10.6 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.2 3PM with 1.6 stocks.
Nothing earth-shattering, but at least he’s providing counting stats worthy of rostering in deep leagues. The Wizards play four games this week, with three of them against favorable fantasy teams (Timberwolves, Nets and Hornets), so he’s a player I consider streaming for this week only.
Advice: Stream for Week 7 in 12+ team points leagues and H2H leagues
Larry Nance Jr. – PF/C, New Orleans Pelicans (30% rostered)
Brandon Ingram’s toe injury also benefits Larry Nance Jr. as well as Trey Murphy. Nance is questionable to start the week with a shoulder injury, but if he suits up, he could be a cheap source of stocks and rebounds for fantasy managers since the Pelicans play four games in Week 7.
Vlatko Cancar – PF/C, Denver Nuggets (2% rostered)
Michael Porter Jr. (heel) has missed his previous two games, and it appears it could be more. Nuggets head coach Michael Malone said Porter’s injury has been “building,” and he’s already been ruled out on Monday.
Bruce Brown is starting in Porter’s absence, but the Slovenian wing, Vlatko Cancar, has averaged 16.0 points, 2.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.5 3PM with 2.0 blocks and 0.5 steals across 29.8 minutes per game while Porter Jr. has been out. Cancar could be a deep streaming option in 12+ team leagues in Week 7.
Gary Harris – SG/SF, Orlando Magic (3% rostered)
Markelle Fultz is nearing his return, but the Magic’s backcourt is still thin, with Cole Anthony and Jalen Suggs both out to start the week. Gary Harris is definitely not an appealing choice by name, but he’s played at least 23 minutes in the last three games and started in Sunday’s loss to the Sixers. If you’re looking for some points, steals and threes, Harris is a streamable option, with the Magic playing four games in Week 7.
Killian Hayes – PG/SG, Detroit Pistons (44%)
Dorian Finney-Smith – SF/PF, Dallas Mavericks (42%)
Patrick Williams – PF, Chicago Bulls (34%)
Malik Monk – SG, Sacramento Kings (32%)
Thaddeus Young – PF/C, Toronto Raptors (26%)
Kenyon Martin – SF/PF Houston Rockets (19%)
Terence Mann – SF/PF, Los Angeles Clippers (19%)
Jose Alvarado – PG, New Orleans Pelicans (11%)