Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: Pickups to make ahead of Week 5

Enes Kanter & Harry Giles, Portland Trail Blazers

Kanter becomes a must-add in all formats with Jusuf Nurkic suffering a broken wrist Thursday night. Kanter has averaged 14.9 points and 9.9 rebounds when starting during his career and should provide top-80 type fantasy value as long as Nurkic is sidelined. For those in deeper leagues, Giles is a worthwhile flier now. He flashed during the preseason and has nice upside should Portland give him an opportunity with minutes opening up in the team’s frontcourt. The former top-20 pick is available in 98 percent of Yahoo leagues.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker, New Orleans Pelicans

He blew up for a career-high 37 points during a start Thursday, as both Eric Bledsoe and Lonzo Ball are dealing with injuries (Zion Williamson sat out as well). Ball has already been ruled out for Friday’s game while dealing with knee tendonitis, so NAW’s going to be well worth using in fantasy leagues in the short-term.

De’Anthony Melton, Memphis Grizzlies

He’s only for category and deeper leagues, but Melton has averaged 1.0 threes, 1.3 steals, and 1.0 blocks while seeing just 21:05 mpg this season, and the third-year player’s offense is showing signs of improvement as well. Melton isn’t a big scorer, but he’s quietly been a top-100 fantasy player over the last two weeks despite barely seeing 20 minutes per game, so he’s a sleeper moving forward.

Delon Wright, Detroit Pistons

Wright has been dropped by many fantasy managers thanks to poor shooting to open the year, but that figures to improve, and he’s looking at a bunch of minutes and a nice Usage Rate with Killian Hayes suffering a torn hip and Derrick Rose sidelined as well. Wright is averaging 34:00 minutes over the last three games.

Precious Achiuwa, Miami Heat

He’s produced back-to-back double-doubles while suddenly starting for a Miami team missing a bunch of players. The No. 20 pick of the draft out of Memphis, Achiuwa is super athletic and he gobbled up boards in college, so he’s worth using in the short-term if you’re searching for rebounds. “My Precious” is available in more than 70% of Yahoo leagues.

Precious Achiuwa #5 of the Miami Heat
Rookie Precious Achiuwa has been showing out of late. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Tyrese Maxey, Philadelphia 76ers

Maxey is seeing a huge jump in playing time and starting while Philadelphia is dealing with many players unavailable, and while it could be more of a short-term pickup, the 76ers apparently didn’t want to include him in a possible James Harden deal, so the team is bullish on him long-term as well. The rookie has looked good in five straight games now and is still available in nearly half of Yahoo leagues.

Eric Gordon, Houston Rockets

Gordon is out with leg tightness, but if he’s available in your league, scoop him up. His value should see a nice boost with Harden traded to Brooklyn, and he’s rostered in 44% of Yahoo leagues. DeMarcus Cousins deserves an upgrade as well and could be out there in your league after a slow start with his new team (and a couple of early ejections have depressed his stats). Sterling Brown (2% rostered) is another option in Houston for deeper leaguers right now too.

Cam Reddish, Atlanta Hawks

He should remain in Atlanta’s starting lineup with Bogdan Bogdanovic suffering a serious knee injury that will sideline him indefinitely, as the once deep-looking Hawks are dealing with multiple injuries. Reddish put up nice numbers when starting last season as a rookie, and his early struggles shooting should improve. He’s eligible at both small and power forward and is especially valuable in category leagues. The 21-year-old has nice upside, and he’s still available in 55% of Yahoo leagues.

Raul Neto, Washington Wizards

If you’re looking for point guard help, Neto could be the answer with Russell Westbrook sidelined for the next 3-4 weeks after suffering a setback with his thigh injury. Neto has averaged a solid 14.0 points with 1.5 threes and 1.8 steals during four starts this season, and it appears he’ll be in that role for another month. The Wizards are running the NBA’s fastest Pace this season, and Neto is available in 98% of Yahoo leagues.

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