Waiver Wire: Options for Week 4 and beyond
Plenty of four-game weeks coming up in Fantasy Week 4. Who might prove to be a great one-week option off the waiver wire? Who should you invest in now for the long haul? Our Sergio Gonzalez shares plenty of names in Playing the Waiver Wire.
Each Week, Fantasy Basketball Writer Sergio Gonzalez gives Fantasy owners his top choices by position for players to pick up for the upcoming scoring period based upon matchups and other factors. He also gives Fantasy owners in deeper leagues his choices for top pick ups among players owned in under 20 percent of leagues as well as players to scoop up and stash away.
Top Guard Free Agent options for Week 4
1. Dahntay Jones, Pacers (@NJ, NY, CLE, @CHA): He has been flying under the radar in most Fantasy leagues, but Jones is off to an outstanding start this season. He averaged 16.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists in his first five games and is going to have some favorable matchups in a four-game slate in Week 4. The Pacers are banged up in the back court and Jones just had a game against the Knicks in which he managed 19 points and 12 rebounds. (Ownership: 35 percent)
2. Mario Chalmers, Heat (OKC, @ATL, @TOR, NO): Chalmers is finally coming around after a slow start, scoring in double figures in back-to-back games for the first time all season against the Nuggets and Wizards. The steals he offers to go with healthy assist numbers and good three-point shooting make him a solid play as a fill-in during his four-game week. The Heat will face three teams that are allowing over 102 points per game in Week 4, including a Raptors team allowing 111.4 points per game. (Ownership: 67 percent)
3. Raja Bell, Bobcats (@ORL, @PHI, @MIL, IND): So much for his wrist injury. Bell has played through some pain and is putting up decent numbers for a Bobcats team that doesn't have much of a scoring presence. His favorable matchups next week come against the Sixers, who have allowed 105.6 points per game, and the Pacers, who have allowed 100.4 points per game. A four-game schedule also helps his appeal this week in cumulative formats. (Ownership: 33 percent)
Top Forward Free Agent options for Week 4
1. Carl Landry, Rockets (PHO, @MIN, @ATL, SAC): Coming into the season, we predicted that Luis Scola would have a chance for bigger numbers this season due to the team's thirst for an inside presence with Yao Ming out for the year. That has carried over to Landry in a big way for the first few weeks of the regular season. Landry averaged 15 points and 5.6 rebounds through his first five games with great shooting percentages from the field and the line. He doesn't hurt you in turnovers and also chips in around a steal and a block per game. Four games in Week 4 against four teams that allow over 100 points per game makes Landry a real sleeper for a big week. (Ownership: 40 percent)
2. Udonis Haslem, Heat (OKC, @ATL, @TOR, NO): He is coming off the bench in Miami this season, but his numbers have not suffered. In fact, he is averaging nearly exactly the same in scoring as he did a year ago and over a full rebound per game more, getting over 30 minutes per game. He had four double-doubles in his first seven games and is going to play four games in Week 4, including tilts against three teams that allow over 100 points per game. (Ownership: 66 percent)
3. Hakim Warrick, Bucks (DAL, NJ, CHA, @MEM): He averaged 12.4 points and 6.6 rebounds through his first give games this season. He's getting plenty of run this season and has been a player who has put up numbers when given playing time throughout his career, but just hasn't always gotten consistent minutes. He will play four games in Week 4 that include a game against his old team, the Grizzlies. Memphis is allowing 112.0 points per game this year and Warrick could be playing with a chip on his shoulder as he'll be trying to show his old team what he can do. (Ownership: 50 percent)
Top Center Free Agent options for Week 4
1. Anderson Varejao, Cavaliers (GS, @WAS, @IND, PHI): Fantasy owners will have to check their league's eligibility rules to see if Varejao qualifies at center, but he does in all leagues that allow multiple positions. He is getting around 35 minutes per game and is putting up excellent rebound numbers along with around 10 points per game. He'll play everybody's favorite Fantasy opponent, Golden State, to begin the week and also a Sixers team that is allowing 105.6 points per game. In a four-game week with favorable matchups, Varejao makes for an excellent start. (Ownership: 59 percent)
2. Nenad Krstic, Thunder (@MIA, @ORL, WAS, @LAL): He's off to an up-and-down start this season, but is currently on the upside of that equation, scoring in double figures in back-to-back games against Orlando and Sacramento with 10-plus field-goal attempts in each game. His upside is that of a low-teens scorer who will chip in around five boards per game and while he is not a player you will want to have in your lineup on a regular basis, you could do a lot worse if you are looking for a one-week stopgap for Week 4 off waivers. (Ownership: 22 percent)
3. Ben Wallace, Pistons (@LAL, @POR, @UTA, @PHO): He isn't quite the Big Ben he was in his first stint with Detroit, but he has re-established himself as a force on the glass. He averaged 9.6 rebounds in his first seven games and is also providing over a block and a steal per game. Don't expect much out of him offensively, but he could accumulate decent stats over the course of a four-game week. (Ownership: 24 percent)
Top scrapheap free agents for Week 4*
1. Devin Brown, Hornets (LAC, PHO, ATL, @MIA): He had a couple of breakout performances in Los Angeles, scoring 25 points with 5 rebounds, 3 steals, 2 assists and 5 threes against the Clippers on Monday. The Hornets don't have very strong options at shooting guard and Brown could turn in some solid stat lines now that he's joined the starting lineup. He could even be useful in the long-term. (Ownership: 5 percent)
2. David Andersen, Rockets (PHO, @MIN, @ATL, SAC): The Rockets' front court situation has also allowed a relative unknown like Andersen step up and produce a few solid performances in the preseason and a couple of double-digit games in the regular season. He's worth a flier in Week 4 due to his very favorable four-game schedule and center eligibility. (Ownership: 3 percent)
3. Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Cavaliers (GS, @WAS, @IND, PHI): Big Z has become somewhat of an afterthought in Fantasy hoops this season due to the arrival of Shaquille O'Neal, but he's not totally useless. He had 9 points and 11 rebounds against the Knicks in just 24 minutes off the bench and could post similar numbers next week against the likes of the Warriors, Pacers and Sixers. He is definitely worth a last-resort replacement look. (Ownership: 24 percent)
4. Anthony Parker, Cavaliers (GS, @WAS, @IND, PHI): Parker will chip in double-digit scoring from time to time and is good for at least one three per contest. He puts up good steals numbers and doesn't turn the ball over much. Give him a look in deeper leagues next week thanks to favorable matchups and a four-game slate. (Ownership: 26 percent)
5. Steve Blake, Trail Blazers (@ATL, DET, @GS, MIN): He is now playing alongside Andre Miller in the starting back court and has managed 11.6 points, 3.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists over his last five games with minimal turnovers and 12 threes. He won't turn in big numbers, but could accumulate decent stats this upcoming week with favorable matchups in Atlanta, Golden State and Minnesota. (Ownership: 19 percent)
*owned in less than 30 percent of leagues
Top long-term free agent pick ups
1. Chris Douglas-Roberts, Nets: The H1N1 virus has taken CDR out of the lineup in New Jersey, but he's not so contagious that he shouldn't be on your Fantasy roster. Prior to going down with the ailment, Roberts was becoming an integral part of a Nets offense without many options, averaging 21.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.7 assists in his previous three games. The long-term upside of CDR makes him worth adding in all formats, where available. (Ownership: 68 percent)
2. Kelenna Azubuike, Warriors: We know how tough it can be to own Don Nelson-coached players, but Azubuike has been putting up useful Fantasy numbers for over a year now. He may not be in your lineup on a weekly basis, but if you own him as a reserve you'll likely start him more than just a few times based on matchups. He doesn't need a whole lot of playing time to contribute either, averaging 15.5 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.2 blocks with 1.5 three per game while getting just 25.5 minutes. (Ownership: 57 percent)
3. Erick Dampier, Mavericks: What's gotten into Dampier? Better yet, what's it going to take to get Dampier on to your Fantasy roster? It's hard enough to find a viable center, but how is one who is averaging 9.6 points, 11.1 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game owned in just half of CBSSports.com leagues? We keep hearing out of Dallas, especially from players like Jason Kidd, that the Mavericks would like to maximize what they get out of Dampier this season. Well, so far, they've done just that. He isn't suddenly going to become an elite Fantasy center, but he's certainly become a useful one. (Ownership: 50 percent)
4. Beno Udrih, Kings: The injury to Kevin Martin has created a starting job again for Udrih, who has been productive in Sacramento in spurts over the last two seasons. With Martin out until at least January, Udrih could be helpful to Fantasy owners for the next several Fantasy weeks. He has averaged 15.4 points, 4.0 assists and 2.8 rebounds over his last five games. (Ownership: 55 percent)
5. D.J. Augustin, Bobcats: Yes, he hasn't been overly productive early on this season, but who on the Bobcats has been? He is still just a second-year player with a lot of upside. Pick up this sleeper if he's been dropped in your league and you can afford to stash him. The payoff could be something like 14-15 points per game with a handful of assists and over a three-pointer per game. (Ownership: 53 percent)
Do you have a Fantasy hoops question for our staff? You can e-mail us at DMFantasyHoops@cbs.com. Be sure to put Attn: Waiver Wire in the subject field. Please include your full name, hometown and state.
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