This is the inaugural edition of The Deep Leaguer with RotoBaller Max Loudermilch. When you're in too deep, look no further! Each week, we will give you the low-down on 1-2 hot NBA free agents for deep fantasy basketball leagues.
NBA Waiver Wire Pickup for Deep Fantasy Basketball Leagues
Drop: Kirk Hinrich
Kirk Hinrich (PG/SG) - There was a turf war in Chicago: Kirk Hinrich on one end and D.J. Augustin on the other. Both shooters battled for time. We know what Hinrich's track record has been in the past. Captain Kirk was to the Bulls what Jordan Crawford was to the Celtics...until he strained his back. Coach Thibodeau's decision to follow would be a killer blow to his fantasy value.
Between the day Rose went down (Nov. 22) and Hinrich’s last solid performance (Dec. 13), Kirk was averaging 9.2 points, 3.9 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 1.5 steals, and 1.2 threes. That's a sure indication of an all-around fantasy asset. Upon his return on Christmas day, he began the long trend of failing to score in double digits. The passing game remained unchanged, and he showed sparks of life in other categories, illustrated by Friday's game, but it didn't last. Five weeks after his back spasms, he injured his hamstring. This is goodbye to Hinrich as a fantasy option.
Add: D.J. Agustin
D.J. Augustin (PG) - The second option point guard has been making it rain over the past week. He clearly beats the Captain in field goals, threes, and steals. Augustin has had a bunch of 10+ point/8+ assist games, and recently he has been playing like an early round hot agent. In Monday's game, he put up 27 points (5 threes) to go with 4 boards, 4 assists, and a steal.
He looks like the kind of player that would make for a great Darren Collison-type option: a shooter that can contribute significant value in several categories. Augustin will have a few duds, but he's quite consistent overall. At 29.2 minutes per game, owners should feel comfortable knowing that this factor doesn't make much of a difference in his game. And with Hinrich now gone, those minutes will be on the uptrend.
In the month of January, Augustin is going for 14.6 points (2.1 threes), 2.7 rebounds, 6.3 assists, and 1.0 steals. For these reasons, he makes for a great investment for standard leagues and a golden opportunity if he's still available in deeper leagues. You should be sprinting to add him, as he's the best hot agent on the wire right now.