The waiver wire is an aspect of fantasy that should never go neglected. At this point in the season, injuries have become a commonplace, rotations endlessly change, and players hit slumps.
These issues are inevitable for fantasy owners, which makes the weekly waiver wire possibly the most underrated part of lineup building. Every week, familiar and unfamiliar faces appear that could possibly be a needed asset for teams the future. Some players may be pure specialists, while others may be versatile in multiple categories. Try to avoid dismissing potential waiver wire additions to your team simply because they lack name recognition.
Players below are owned in 50% of leagues or less.
2018-19 Fantasy Basketball Week 9 Waiver Wire
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Dwyane Wade, SG, Miami Heat
Dwayne Wade delivered in the clutch tonight!
With the score tied at 100, he drove to the rim, got fouled and nailed two free throws with 3 seconds left to give Miami a 102-100 win! #FatherPrime #NBA pic.twitter.com/t8NEsxXKsM
— BetBlog (@betblog_com) December 3, 2018
The lone normality of writing about Dwyane Wade on a waiver wire article is including the Miami Heat as his team. This is probably the first and last time you will see him featured in an article such as this.
Wade is surely not going to produce superstar production as he did in the past. Nevertheless, he still remains fantasy relevant. Only two weeks ago, Wade dropped 35 points, five rebounds, and six assists on 59% shooting on the Toronto Raptors. In the span of the last five games, he has averaged 19.4 PPG, 5.4 APG, and 0.8 blocks on 28 MPG.
While Wade's recent success could be a random hot streak, it shows that he still has some fuel in the tank. Consider this Wade a moderate risk with moderate upside.
Alec Burks, PG/SG, Cleveland Cavaliers
Burks seems to have finally found a place to fit in. Since being traded from Utah for Cleveland's Kyle Korver, Burks has averaged 13.7 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 1.0 SPG with 26.4 MPG in three games. This includes a game-winning dunk to give his team a rare victory over the Brooklyn Nets.
Burks' usage rate should remain steady for the rest of the season, as Cleveland appears to be a low-level lottery team. Averaging over 12 shots per game with Cleveland, expect Burks to play a major role in the Cleveland lineup for the rest of the season.
Marcus Smart PG/SG, Boston Celtics
#Celtics have outscored their opponents by an average margin of +21.75 points over Marcus Smart's four starts (4-0).
Smart's average +/- in those wins is +15.5
His leadership and intensity are transforming the Celtics into the #NBA Finals contenders we always thought they were. pic.twitter.com/y7s8oukuO8
— Jon Jacobson / TommyPoint.com (@TommyPointJon) December 7, 2018
For anyone who follows the Boston Celtics, it's no secret that Jaylen Brown has not been good this year. This has inevitably opened the door for Marcus Smart, who has filled in for an injured Brown during the past three games. During this span, Smart has averaged 8.7 PPG, 2.3 RPG, 5.0 APG, and 2.7 SPG on 52% from the field and 46% from beyond the arc.
Surely this shooting streak won't last, but Smart has always been a versatile player capable of this kind of production. With Brown's struggles, Smart will likely continue to get opportunities to showcase his defensive prowess. Consider Smart to be a steal if he is available in your league.
Spencer Dinwiddie, PG/SG, Brooklyn Nets
Spencer Dinwiddie Leading NBA Reserves in Assists https://t.co/XDuUHjGQ6r << Info Here pic.twitter.com/zi6OnjcAzQ
— NBA Now (@_NBANow) December 1, 2018
With the way Dinwiddie has played this season, it's increasingly hard to picture him re-signing with the Nets after this season. Currently, Dinwiddie is averaging a career-high 15.6 PPG. With Caris LeVert out for the season, this production is bound to increase, assuming a substantial spike in usage.
In 11 games since LeVert's injury, Dinwiddie has averaged 18.0 PPG, 5.6 APG, and 1.9 three-pointers. Dinwidde is a versatile scorer who will be a main centerpiece for the offense on one of the league's bottom-dwellers. Consider Dinwiddie to be a quality pickup.
Check out the rest of the 2018-19 Fantasy Basketball Coverage to help win your leagues.
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