The headline should serve as a warning: one of the most exciting days of the entire NBA season is fast approaching, and the results of said day could make every bit of what I’m about to write a moot point. If that happens I’ll be gloriously thrilled, because every year I cheer for the chatter to come to fruition on…NBA TRADE DEADLINE DAY!

The All-Star Game is tonight, and then three days of rest for the whole league (which is actually a full week for every non-All-Star). But the day everyone comes back to the court is the day the madness can occur. As a result, the names I’m mentioning are either hot hands or stand in line to get a boost from the hired hands that left their team. It’s certainly a tricky week, and the limited games only add to the nuance.

So, go play with the Trade Machine, let me hear the proposal you want to happen for your team, and let’s get ready for…

For the three people who wondered, the most enjoyable Trade Machine scenario I can find for my Hawks is (and no, it’s not for Carmelo Anthony: the expiring contracts of Mike Scott and Tiago Splitter with a 2nd round pick to the Lakers for Nick Young and Jose Calderon. Gives Hawks a legit second-team scorer, gives Lakers cap flexibility and a pick.

 The 7 Ahead

  • 5-game week: N/A
  • 4-game weeks: N/A
  • 3-game week: CHA, DEN, LAC, NO
  • 2-game week: Everyone besides the guys above and the ones below.
  • 1-game week: N/A

Top Weekly Waiver Options (<40% owned in Y!/games this week):

  • Frank Kaminsky (34%/3) – The Tank! Dude’s been playing like a tank lately. In the juggernaut sense. 19.7/8.0/3.3/1.2/2.0 with 2.3 3PG on 46% shooting. That’s what the Hornets (and MJ) need from Kaminsky to validate not taking all those picks from Boston so they could grab Justise Winslow. Will he keep this up? I doubt it. But, I guess there’s a path to it. As the Hornets keep fading in the East, look for Frank to keep getting looks. He’s a big part of their future.
  • Yogi Ferrell (40%/2) – I feel like this is kinda cheating since he’s right on the line, but I still believe in Yogi as a fantasy option. I’m sure his ownership dropped a little because he’s not putting up 32 spots anymore. That’s silly, tho. This isn’t Linsanity. 11.7/3.3/5.0 with 51.9 FG% from a PG is still better than a lot of other PG options. And he isn’t anywhere close to his ceiling.
  • Malcolm Brogdon (39%/2) – Again, Brogdon needs to be owned in double this amount of leagues. He may not be solely getting the Jabari Parker minutes, due to the nuisance Matthew Dellavedova, but he’s the one to own. On a bad week he still got you 10.7/2.0/4.0/1.0 with 85.6 FT% on 5 trips per game.
  • Jameer Nelson (25%/3) – Now’s where it gets dicey. What will Denver do? And what to do with the savvy veteran Nelson? He’s someone I’d love to see join my Hawks, but if he stays in Denver he has a great shot at putting up incredible numbers like the line from his last 7: 17/6/9 with 2.7 3PG. Haha, he’s never done this in his life for more than this past week, but while, sure, his numbers regress a little, the situation in Denver should give him 35 mpg and a floor of 11/4/6. You roster that. Now, what to do with Emmanuel Mudiay?
  • Kelly Olynyk (39%/2) – If Boston makes a big move at the deadline this means nothing, because a more solid big man is their primary need (aside from a true second-team scorer). But…if he stays in this role (25-30 mpg), Olynyk’s proving he’s a reliable PF/C that gives stats in non-traditional big cats. 16.8/7.0/3.0 with 2.3 3PG and a FG% over 60 is incredible. The points and boards are the only big jump over the past week from his previous month of games, too.
  • Ben Simmons (40%/2) – Yep…cheating again at 40%, but if you’re able to stash anyone in your league, he’s my top option now with Khris Middleton back. It makes no sense for the Sixers to play him at all this year, but if he gets on the floor there’s just too much fantasy sex appeal not to give it a shot.
  • Alex Len (32%/2) – And here’s perhaps the biggest winner of the potential trade deadline deals (for fantasy purposes). If Tyson Chandler is dealt to a contender, which he should be (but probably won’t be), Len’s in line for a big minutes boost. Given what he’s done over the past seven days with only 20 mpg, 12.7/8.0/1.3/0.0/1.3 with good percentages, that could be a huge boon for your playoff run.

And now a look at the daily rhythms of the NBA for this week!

Monday: 0 GAMES – Need.

Tuesday: 0 GAMES – More.

Wednesday: 0 GAMES – Glamour Shots from the Dubs.

Thursday: 6 GAMES – And we’re back! Whew. Needed that oxygen. And that TNT tribute to Craig Sager from the All-Star Game where they pulled stars and celebs to hit 3’s for his charity. EJ, as always, got my teary eyed handing the check for $500K over to Sager’s late wife. When kindness prevails, it crumbles all other barriers. And to avoid getting too sappypoliticalpreachybutimactuallyapastor, Let’s talk about how Melo won’t be playing Thursday night against the Cavs because he’ll…be included in a trade with the team playing that night! In LA. Against the Warriors. At the deadline. Sorry, Bron.

Friday: 10 GAMES – Three months ago I joked that Boston/Toronto is the series of the ‘Who wants to lose in the Eastern Conference Finals?’ that’s coming in May. Well, we get a taste of it again Friday night, but I may be changing my tune on the power rankings for the East. Either of these two could tango with the Cavs all the way to seven, and possibly even beat them. And I’ll be a giddy schoolboy when/if it happens. And even more so if they don’t get a chance because the Hawks already knocked them off in the second round!!! But they gotta beat the Miami’s of the world, first.

Saturday: 8 GAMES – A full slate with some back-to-backs, but all my chips are getting cashed in for the opportunity of seeing Joel Embiid vs. Kristaps Porzingis. Get Well Soon, Joel! And since that likely won’t happen, I’ll enjoy watching Dwyane Wade and Jimmy Butler show off against an injured and struggling (and probably new look) Cavs.

Sunday: 8 GAME – And to finish the week, and the long fantasy two-week stretch for most, we get an increase from the norm of Sunday matchups. The trade deadline could completely alter the landscape of these games, but if they stay the same, watching Utah battle Washington will be an incredible find. The Wizards may have one of the strongest starting fives in the East, but the Jazz are the dark horse to face the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals. And we need more Marcin Gortat struggling to find shots around the rim against Rudy Gobert. It’s a European Danger Zone! And my money’s on the Frenchman. Ugh….I feel dirty writing that. Alright, shower time!


Now, DROP THOSE COMMENTS! And don’t be afraid to send along any questions on trades, pickups or life! Good luck in Week 17!

  1. Miss Piggy says:

    Are these WW options ranked in order of pickup? Also, where would you slot in Ish Smith? Thanks for the reply.

    • @Miss Piggy: Oh Kermy…

      Nope, not in order. But that little gem means they’re my top choice. The Gem of the Week.

      As for Smith, he’d be at the bottom of this list. If Jackson goes he catapults up, but I’d rather have the prospective of these guys first.

  2. Brale says:

    H2H point league 9cat

    Is It trade D.Williams, H. Barnes and J.Valanciunas for B.Lopez good trade? I am also looking up for Frazier, Seth Curry, Buddy Hield, E.Moore, T.Warren , Okafor and Cauley Stein on free agent…

    • @Brale: Well, I don’t love any of the FA options, but Hield could be a fun add now that he’s with the Kings.

      As for the trade, no. That’s too much for Brook. And he could fold it in as the season ends with the Nets sucking so bad.

      • Brale says:

        @[email protected]:
        What do you think about Valanciunas and his status now with Ibaka?
        I’m looking to get off him but waiting for some good FA or waiver … Is Hield that one?

        • @Brale: Don’t drop JV. He may take a little hit, but I don’t think too much so. I’d imagine that the minutes and shots that were going to the poor 4’s in Toronto previously just slide into Ibaka’s corner, rather than him stealing a ton from JV.

          Hield’s a greta pickup potentially, but not for JV.

  3. Johnc says:

    As an owner of CP3 and RJax, I went hunting for assists and protection against trades for my first place team. I have my bye in hand so only focused on building for those (hopefully) two weeks that decides the title. So I grabbed Ish and Mudiay (ugh) two weeks ago. I read that you are not a big fan of stashing Ish. And Mudiay’s percentages wherever he plays gives me heartburn (my drop for CP3 when he returns?). Are there better wire options in your opinion than these two in my 12 team, H2H, 9 cat league. I punt turnovers as my bigs throw it around a lot but are the cornerstone of my franchise.

    My team: Lowry, CP3 (IR), Smart, Mudiay, RJax, Ish
    Leonard, Porter, G Harris, J Johnson,
    KAT, Jokic, Horford, Poison Goose, Adams

    Wire: T Jones, Yogi, Olynyk, Hield, JMike, Jennings, Speights (5games first week of playoffs)

    • @Johnc: I’d prefer Yogi, Jennings and Hield over Ish. Mediay’s a tough nut to crack, but yes, you gotta be careful with the %s. I’d probably roll with:

      Lowry/CP3/Smart/RJax (even though he’s sucked lately)/Yogi
      All those incredible bigs

      And if you need assists, watch the Knicks situation close this week. Jennings could be a huge add.

      • Johnc says:

        @[email protected]:

        thanks. Interesting perspective. I did not consider dropping James Johnson. He has been so good for me. But it is about the future, not the past.

        • Johnc says:

          @Johnc: just dawned on me you probably thought I meant Joe not James. My bad.

          • @Johnc: Haha that’s EXACTLY what I thought. My bad man. Product of my Hawks fandom I suppose. Ish, Mudiay and Harris prob your weakest three right now.

  4. Edge says:

    Great stuff as always

    What to do with Ty lawson and Matt Barnes in a 16 team deep league

    My team is well balanced, any addition will help. So do I keep Ty Lawson & Matt Barnes or drop them for?

    Josh Richardson, kosta koufos, ben simmons and john henson

    Thanks in advance

    • @Edge: Well, hold for now. I don’t think the Kings are done. However, if you have a lot of depth, I’d be all about stashing Simmons for the highest upside. Keep a close eye this week.

      I’d rank the other options Koufos/JRich/Henson.

  5. Brale says:

    This are mine worst players;
    McConnell, Markief Morris, H.Barnes, D.Williams, Middleton, Valanciunas, Noel.

    And these is what I have on waiver wire (FA);
    B. Hield, T. Frazier, A. Len, E. Moore, S. Hill, J. Murray, T. Lawson, W. Hernangomez…

    Do you have any suggestion for trade? Maybe some player will drop down like Valanciunas, but you answer me already about his status. II am just looking for the best playoff schedule. I was monitorin by your article about playoff schedule till now… I don’t have any player lower than “average tier” but I will pay also negative sides of that, I have 2 games over for 2 days in last week playoff…

    Thank you for all effort!

    • @Brale: I wouldn’t drop any of yours for any of the WW options. McConnell and Williams have the greatest chance of drop off I’d say due to trade stuff and the potential of Simmons returning.

      Watch out for Len and Hield. Maybe you can move off of Middleton and Williams for an upgrade at F, then pick up Hield?

      • Brale says:

        @[email protected]:

        I also have Anteto, Leonard, McCollum, Millsap, Gortat, Turner…

        I am looking to get of Deron because of big chance of trade, and there is some news that TOR is not satisfied with Valanc and there is also some posibility for trade, if not there is also Ibaka hit.
        I don’t trust to much in Simmons for this season and they have good playoff schedule so let stay calm with McConnell.

        My opinion is It would be nice to trade package of Valanc and Deron for one player of lower price If I have to, and after take someone from the WW?

        What do you think?

        Thanks! (y)

        • @Brale: I wouldn’t trade a player for a lesser. Ever. I understand your reasoning because you’re adding from the WW, but that’s a Kings move…don’t sell for .$60 on the dollar. I’d pair JV and Deron for an upgrade, even if just slightly and someone you’e more comfortable with. Maybe you can steal Brook Lopez from someone?

          • Brale says:

            @[email protected]:

            Which one to pick instead of Deron If he goes to Cleveland;
            B.Hield, W.Hernangomez, C.Payne, C.Lee, Valentine, C.Hriss or Harkless? Maybe I can pick someone and do trade for Portis or Warren If they are better picks..
            I’m playing H2H point yahoo league 12teams 9cat

            • @Brale: Portis still too much a wild card to me. Warren could get some good scoring, but with Chriss and Bender likely to receive more minutes, as well, the shots may not be there. I still think Hield is the best choice. Keep an eye on Payne with his minutes in CHI.

              • Brale says:

                @[email protected]:

                Nice review, thanks. I got new options with getting free Beasley, Hardaway and T.Ross?

                • @Brale: Ross could be nice, but of those names Hardaway has the most value.

  6. Tyler says:

    Have one free spot cause Lin is in IL.
    Who should I pickup for my team: Lawson, Ross, Swaggy, Aminu, Harkless, MKG, CLee, Baze, Roberson, Olynyk, Moore, CJ Miles, Hield, Ilyasova, Frazier, Ish Smith, Knight, Okafor, N.Powell

    Trying to be dominant in FG/Reb/STL/BLK/3s and competitive in AST/TO.
    Feel like I need more 3s so should I go Swaggy or Ross? Also like Hark/Baze since they have solid stocks and 3s with good FG%..
    Or should I take a chance on Knight getting traded?

    10Team punt PTS/FT


    • Tyler says:

      @Tyler: Oh and Yogi got dropped as well

      • @Tyler: MAN that’s a lot of options. I’ll try to give a top 5 names, but then you’ll want to add to your team based on biggest need from stats and your preference. You could use some scoring and assists. Big men are great. So, I’d say:


        Keep your eye on knight for the Trade Deadline, for sure. Good luck!

  7. JPaul says:

    @[email protected] is it ok that i will get Draymond green for my Brook Lopez? or if he wants more… can i let go tyreke + brolo for draymond green?

      • @[email protected]: Weeeelllllll…on a deeper look, I don’t know that I’d do it straight up. Dray’s really only giving you more assets and steals, but all the rest sways towards Brook. By a good margin, too.

        Funny what happens when you actually compare full stat lines and not just perception!

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