Hi all, this marks the start of a weekly series where I’ll break down who you should consider adding to your team in standard leagues. However, before picking any of these guys up, you must evaluate your own team to see what it is you need. These guys all have different strengths in terms of categories that they excel at, so it is very important to pick the one that best fits your team. I’ll limit this weekly list to players owned in 45% or under of Yahoo! Leagues, as I wouldn’t want people to see a player that’d be a great addition to their team only to find that he’s already owned and has been for a while. So without further ado, let’s get into this week’s list!
Kelly Olynyk, Miami Heat – 22% owned in Yahoo! Leagues
After being a lottery pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, Olynyk has been relegated to a bench role as a shooting big man, but this season he is seeing a massive uptick in minutes so far. His minutes have jumped up from 19.4 last season to 26.0 this season, and this has allowed him to return top 75 value so far while playing the same role on the team as a floor-spacing big man. In the last three games, he has become a major piece of Miami’s rotation, averaging 14.0 PTS, 3.3 3PM, and 6.3 REB in 28.4 MIN. If he is able to continue his strong play and maintain his role in Miami’s rotation, he should continue to provide value in points, rebounds, 3s made, and FT%. He gets a decent amount of stonks as well, however, I expect his season average of 1.0 BLK to decrease slightly, as he’s only reached that mark in per-36 stats once. Pick him up if you need a well-rounded big man that won’t take your percentages.
Josh Jackson, Detroit Pistons – 41% owned in Yahoo! Leagues
Josh Jackson is another guy who was a high draft selection but has so far not lived up to the draft-day hype. However, with the barren roster that the Pistons have this year, he is getting an opportunity to revive his career similar to the opportunity fellow 2017 selection Markelle Fultz got with the Magic. So far, he’s offered very well-rounded production and is on the fringes of being a top 100 player. With the recent injury to Killian Hayes, I think he could reach that level and potentially exceed it, as he will surely take some of the touches that previously went to Hayes. He also has had a very high usage rate of 27.0% so far, and his averages are actually weighed down due to an in-game injury he suffered on January 3 vs the Celtics. He won’t be an efficient player, but he should provide value in all counting stats.
Enes Kanter, Portland Trail Blazers- 44% owned in Yahoo! Leagues
While Jusuf Nurkic has been a major disappointment (shouldn’t have drafted him in the RazzJam), Kanter has been a major surprise off the bench. Back for his second act in Portland, he looks to be back to his 2018 form where he played a major role in their Western Conference name. Kanter isn’t the sexiest name and he doesn’t have the most upside, but a big man who can average a double-double and shoot free throws should be owned everywhere. He doesn’t provide much in terms of defensive stats, but he’s still a great guy to have at the end of your roster for rebounds and FG%. You may have to drop him later on in the season if Nurkic turns things around and Kanter’s role shrinks, but for now, add him to your teams for the immediate boost.
Tyus Jones, Memphis Grizzlies- 19% owned in Yahoo! Leagues
With the injury to star point guard Ja Morant, Jones, who’s normally nothing more than a decent role player, has been thrust into a high-volume starting role. Jones is a very limited player for fantasy, but he excels as a player who can get assists and steals, two categories that are hard to find. In the last week as a starter, he has averaged 7.7 AST and 1.7 STL, which have enabled him to flirt with top 75 value during that time period. Another major boon of owning Jones is that he’s a rare player who gets assists without turning the ball over, as during the above time period he only averaged 0.7 TOV. Jones is a very limited player, but if you need assists and/or steals he will provide great value for the next month while Morant is injured.