Welcome to your midweek guidance for Week 16! In this post, I identify widely-available players who can help you win your head-to-head matchup. With the trade deadline just around the corner, it’s almost time to see if any of those popular long-term stashes pan out. We’ve already seen one relegated to the ash heap, with the annual Myles Turner trade rumors mostly fizzling out last week.
I use the word mostly because there’s a small chance that I might have to eat my words (meme?). Technically, Turner could still be moved after signing an extension. And though Indiana’s management is adamant that they’re committed to Turner, we know that NBA franchises are not always paragons of honesty. In all likelihood, however, Turner will remain a Pacer well beyond next week.
Fortunately, there are other plausible trade scenarios that will alter the fantasy landscape. Keep reading if you’re looking to lean into a couple short-term stashes that could turn into big fantasy contributors after the deadline.
The Celtics, Nets, Thunder, Spurs, and Jazz have just one remaining game before Monday, while the Knicks, Pelicans, Pacers, Nuggets, and Hornets play three more games. Each day gives us opportunities for streaming, as Saturday’s slate is the largest with nine games on.
These are the players I’m watching and adding to close out the week.
Four Category Contributors
- Mark Williams (Rebounds, Steals, Blocks, FG%): The upside is tantalizing, but Williams is still playing behind Mason Plumlee in the Hornet rotation. That may all change next week, depending on what Charlotte does at the trade deadline. If you have a cushion in the standings and can stash someone for what could develop into a huge return in the fantasy playoffs, Williams is a prime candidate (Plays Thurs, Fri, Sun).
- Alec Burks (Points, Threes, Assists, FT%): If the Pistons manage to escape the Dallas cold in the hours ahead, Burks may draw his fourth consecutive start against Charlotte on Friday. Playing Burks 30 MPG while benching Killian Hayes screams trade bait, but we’ll likely have to wait until next week to see if the former is dealt. If the Pistons continue to showcase him in the coming games, Burks stands a good chance of sustaining the 16 points, 3.3 triples, 5.3 rebounds, and 3 assists he averaged over his previous 3 starts (Plays Fri, Sat).
Three Category Contributors
- Daniel Gafford (Rebounds, Blocks, FG%): When the Pistons/Wiz game was postponed, we were robbed of a chance to see Gafford’s role beside a healthy Kristaps Porzingis on a Rui Hachimura-less front line. As I’ve written before, 20 minutes is all Gafford needs to be a 12-team category league asset, and I’m confident he’ll exceed that mark going forward (Plays Fri, Sat).
- Isaiah Hartenstein (Rebounds, Blocks, FG%): Despite ending with 5 fouls on Tuesday, Hartenstein played 40 minutes in a losing effort against the Lakers. Mitchell Robinson’s recent injury update painted a dim picture, so it’s not unwise to grab one of the Knicks’ backup centers with the expectation that they’ll garner significant playing time through February. While Jericho Sims presents as a good boards and FG% contributor, he’s severely limited in other categories. On the other hand, hedging Hartenstein’s way allows you to potentially benefit from his passing ability in addition to traditional big man stats (Plays Thurs, Sat, Sun).
- Donte DiVincenzo (Threes, Assists, Steals): At least one of the Golden State starters will rest on Thursday, which is all Donte needs to play 30+ minutes and serve up a nice fantasy line. Even when the Warriors are at full strength, he continues to play anywhere from 25-32 minutes, making him a borderline hold in 12-team category leagues (Plays Thurs, Sat).
- Larry Nance Jr. (Rebounds, Steals, FG%): Nance was back to playing good basketball in his past seven games after a series of short-term injuries curbed his early season momentum. With the exception of an 85% free throw conversion rate, the 9.3 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 1.3 steals in 24.5 MPG over that period are consistent with what he’s done historically in that amount of playing time (Plays Thurs, Sat, Sun).
- Zach Collins (Rebounds, Blocks, FG%): Readers of this post know I lean more conservative when it comes to stashing lower-end players, but with how close we are to the trade deadline, Zach Collins presents as a dude who might get a big boost if Jakob Poeltl is moved. Assuming you can afford the lack of Spurs games on Saturday and Sunday, you might be able to cash in on holding Collins through February 9th (Plays Fri).
- Moritz Wagner (Rebounds, FG%, FT%): Wagner went from a hot commodity on Wednesday afternoon to a drop on Thursday morning, thanks to Wendell Carter Jr.’s 33-minute performance against the Sixers. Still, WCJ’s recurring plantar fasciitas issue should be reason enough to keep Mo on your watch list, since he averaged 13.9 points (52% from the field, 91% from the line on 3.3 attempts), 1.1 threes, 6.9 rebounds, and 1 steal across 14 December starts (Plays Fri, Sun).
- Drew Eubanks (Rebounds, Blocks, FG%): Jusuf Nurkic exited Wednesday’s game after playing just two minutes, so it’s possible that Eubanks will draw a few starts in the coming days. In 24 MPG over his last 7 outings, he averaged 6.9 rebounds and 2 blocks (Plays Fri, Sat).
Two Category Contributor
- Chris Duarte (Threes, Steals): He lives! It’s been a disappointing campaign for Duarte after a promising rookie season had him on everyone’s draft board heading into this year. Injuries had a lot to do with that, but he’s healthy now and receiving starting nods. If that trend continues, he could meet his pre-season expectations after all, especially if he continues to produce numbers in the ball park of his past four games – 13.3 points, 1.8 threes, 4.5 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals (Plays Thurs, Fri, Sun).
Hit me up in the comments with any questions or feedback!
While we can only speculate as to what the trade deadline brings, which of these guys do you like, or like most, for second half and beyond in a 12-team h2h? Aall are possible keepers in my league, though I could at most keep two of them: Avdija, Duren*, D.White, Eason, Hartenstein, Jalen Will*, Pat.Williams, Precious*, Quickley, Sochan (*Guys I already have).
Also, random but, do you think Herro, Sexton, and/or R.Williams are primed for big second halves?
Hey Joe – Of the guys I’m most interested in from your keeper list, this is how I’d rank them:
2. Jalen Williams
I really like where Rob Williams is headed. He appears to be back in pre-injury form, so it’s a good time to trade for him if a manager is impatient with his production. I see Herro sustaining top-70 category league value for the rest of the season. Sexton needs a lot to happen to get back on my radar – first and foremost, a Conley trade. Sexton isn’t a guy I’ve looked to add in any league.
Thanks! Wow. You’re really high on Duren! I get it. He can be a real machine, though then he goes and has two clunkers where he gets under 30 minutes and makes me wonder if he’s more of a next year than this year. I’m still in sixth and I’m actually debating whether to offer the Williams owner, who may be slipping out of contention, a one-for-one Duren for Williams trade since Duren can be kept at an 11th round price.
I don’t see Precious on your list, so obv. you’re higher on Eason. Would that assessment change if the Raptors traded any of their front court studs (OG, Siakam)?
The Celtics hold a really good playoff schedule if you start yours in week 19 (11 games between 27 Feb -19 march), so getting Williams (still very young) for a rookie with a similar skill set sounds good to me.
The Raptor trade scenario might open up some opportunities for Precious, but his production has been too volatile in the past for me to rank him above rookies who are already producing on a consistent basis. A lot also depends on who comes back in the trade…
Thanks for everything.
I have a q. This dude in my league offers the most ridiculous offers, but he actually offered me something that intrigued me, but he offer me 4 for 1. 1 of the guys is injured but they don’t allow you to simply add him to the IL so I’d have to drop 3 guys. The offer is.
My Tre Jones
Is it worth Vassell? I don’t have 3 guys to drop TBH. I could counter with Jones for Vassell and 1 of those guys like quigley.
What should I do and what do you think?
Hey TGH – At this point, a lot depends on where you’re at in your standings and when your playoffs begin. If they don’t start until the second week of March and you’re at the top of your league, for instance, then taking a risk on Vassell makes sense. With Tre Jones struggling lately and hurting his foot on Wednesday, this trade offer could represent an escape route with the opportunity to get Vassell in the process
If your playoffs start sooner than that, and you’re battling for a spot, I’d stand pat and hope Jones doesn’t miss any time!
Asking for Vassell and Quickley is another option, since the latter has been solid over the past two months and can help you right away.
1. My team is in 3rd place, 4 out of 1st and up 8-1 this week H2H 12 T 9 CAT Standard. It is 8 games between 1-9. Very tight.
My roster is as follows:
PG – Steph
SG – Bane
G – Ivey
SF – George
PF – Keldon
F – KCP
C – Embiid
C – Horford
UTIL – Murphy III
UTIL – Tre Jones
B – Onkongwu
B – Keegan Murray
B – Royce O’Neal
I’m very happy w my roster I had traded Jimmy and Mikal for Embiid and KCP. Had to do it. I don’t have anyone on IL right now but that always changes in todays ridiculous NBA, fantasy basketball has become a joke if you ask me with all the prima donnas and how the NBA and teams allow players to miss games due to “load management” or a sore finger.
So you think Tre for DV and Immanuel is worth it?
I think you’re in a good position to make that move. If Vassell comes back in time to help, it’s a major win for you. If not, at least you have a 12-team contributor in Quickley to soften the blow.
We all feel the frustration you describe. I know I’ve vented in this post about the state of affairs with resting and LM. That being said, I can’t give up on the hobby. I enjoy it too much. Hang in there!
Playoffs Start March 13 by the way.
I’m right there with you but I’m a Baseball hit 1st, but I do all Fantasy sports! Would never give up lol, but it’s silly already.
Like in baseball I rather have a player not try to go for a catch which affects my starting pitcher to ensure they don’t break their body running into a padded wall. Lol. 9/10 times the player dislocated their body LOL. I don’t get it. Injuries happen and I know that but Jonathan Issac for instance. He’s not going to break playing 20+ min. 8-10 min then not even on a B2B he gets rested he’s making like 18 Mil a season. It’s sickening.
ANYHOW, I’ll try to pull the trigger. Hopefully he accepts the counter.
Thanks for all the help!!
March 13th is ideal. Gives you a good chance to get Vassell back – whatever that looks like on a tanking spurs team. Go get ‘im!
I hear you loud and clear on the injuries – real and not real. It’s always an adventure trying to figure out who’s gonna have a night off and when. I’ve started making my adds as late as possible so as not to get burned by late scratches. Whatever it takes!
Hope you are good sir!
Ultimate WW coolers this week. Sochan goes down which leads to Tyus who blows for two games which leads to Lowry who is done me thinks which leads to P Williams who sprains his ankle. one bad pickup after another. Need Hartenstein (my final pickup) to come through this weekend as somehow I still lead 5-4 but several cats are leaning his way.
No questions yet, just some whining.
Hey JC – All is well, thanks! Aside from WW busts, I hope you’re good.
I feel your pain on Sochan. As for Lowry, I was bearish on him in my Heat preview, but I did not expect this five alarm dumpster fire.
I like the Hartenstein pickup. Fourth time’s the charm?
I did not even put Eubanks on my list of failures. Felt good about his two games after Nurkic went down. Not very good last night. Slo Mo spasms – wow.
With four weeks left until the playoffs, it looks like four teams will battle for the final three spots. I like my odds but….
WW: Hayward, E Gordon, Sochan, J Rich the best so not great. If Trendon shines again tonight, I guess he goes into the short term mixing bowl.
End of my bench: Hartenstein, BClark and Eubanks. Swaps? Team below as I like to type their names in anger scaring them into better performances.
Jokic, Embiid, Hartenstein, Kessler
Eubanks, Ingram, PJ Wash, B Clark
Middleton, Slo Mo, Maxey
Jrue, McCollum, FVV,
I’d need some positive health news from the Sochan camp before doing this, but Sochan for Clarke would allow you to take advantage of the former’s four game week. That, of course, assumes the tanking Spurs don’t hold him out.
Otherwise, Hayward for Clarke is worth trying out.
I was offered Fox for Maxey and Kessler. One item to consider is that The Kings have a beautiful playoff schedule with four games each week. Utah has only two games and Philly three in that first week. Then both have four the remaining weeks.
I would likely be punting blocks I guess.With my team construction, would you do that trade?
If you’re comfortable with your ability to get into the playoffs but aren’t anticipating a bye, I like the move for Fox.
Just for grins, would you do this trade if I had the bye week? I ask because my opponents who I am chasing both are on the verge of losing ground this week and had some injuries/Kyrie too. So by this time next week I could be at or very near that bye pace. Funny how 24 hours changed things. Thanks for your patience.
No worries – I like the Fox side, though it’s definitely closer with a bye factored in. He’s the best player in the deal, and as we know, those four games can always shrink to two or three for any of the involved players
Made the trade. Here’s the new squad and WW options. Bruno was his drop in our trade so I just took him. Cam Thomas was a pickup before the Kyrie trade. They play Mon and Tues. Feels like some work to do here!
Jrue, FVV, Fox,
McCollum, Middleton, SloMo, Cam Thomas
PJ Wash, Ingram, B Clarke,
Embiid, Jokic, Bruno, Hartenstein
WW: Eubanks, S Adams, Rui, Eason, E Gordon, P Williams, Looney, Suggs, Sochan
I like it. That’s a stellar PG group, and you have the two best centers in fantasy. I wouldn’t hang onto Bruno. If you’re looking for a schedule stream option, P Williams is your guy for this week. Otherwise, I would give Eubanks another chance. EG would be my third choice as a guy who you can hold through Friday before dropping him for weekend streaming.
Remember to keep some powder dry for whatever opportunities come of Thursday’s moves!
Would you rather stash S Adams or grab M Williams hoping Plumlee is on his way out?
Tough one – At this point, I’d grab Williams and see what happens.
1. I grabbed Collins with Poeltl leaving. What kind of production and minutes should we see from him? Not sure he gives me D stats but grabbed him so I could ponder.
2. Gafford on the WW. Love his blocks. Claim him for Collins or M Williams or leave him alone? Note: Williams only has two games the first week of our playoffs while Collins has four and Gafford three. If Plumlee is out of the way by mid-March That would be nice.
3. With the Nets getting CamJo, Crowder and Mikail, is Cam Thomas’ 15 minutes of fame done or does he stay relevant even with the new guys coming in?
Hey JC – I’m meant to mention previously that this week’s post will drop tomorrow to account for the trades that occur later.
1. Good pickup, hold him. I expect that he can play 25-30 MPG going forward, which SHOULD enable him to get you at least one block per game.
2. I would wait until the deadline passes and cross my fingers that Gafford doesn’t get picked up. If Plumlee doesn’t get traded, I’d pounce on Gafford for Williams.
3. I’m pulling for Thomas, but I think it’s mostly over UNLESS more trades happen later to offload a few of the Nets’ role players… There are suddenly a lot of them…
Looking forward to your post trade analysis. Thanks for the advice and quick turnaround. Very helpful. Gafford’s block total this week is ill timed for him to sneak through waivers but I will try of course.
Collins a bit soft but he has a nice playoff schedule and hopefully those minutes translate into production. Getting him and M Williams for free was nice!
I basically stare at my phone for two days at work just waiting for these trades!