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Fantasy Basketball Mid-Week Pickups for Week 2


The 2019-20 NBA season is underway, and it has been nothing short of must-see tv on a nightly basis. Box scores have been filled to the brim and games have gone down to the wire. All the pent-up excitement built up over the offseason seems to have been well justified, and there's little reason not to expect more of the same in the coming weeks and months ahead.

Pick-ups are a strange aspect of any fantasy sport, and basketball is no exception. If you've drafted with any amount of competence, a mid-week pick up off the waiver wire isn't going to make or break your fantasy season. If done right, it could provide a slight edge that serves as the difference between victory and defeat in any given week.

Having said that, this will be the first in a weekly column breaking down some of the best options to fill a replaceable spot on your fantasy roster. A diamond in the rough can be found every so often, but these are more about the lesser-owned players who can provide serviceable numbers that can nudge your squad to a win.

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Week 2 Waiver Wire Pickups

Luke Kennard - SG - Detroit Pistons - 38% owned

On a Pistons squad with a scarcity of perimeter options, Kennard seems to have taken it upon himself to pick up some early slack by averaging 18.3 points per game. Kennard doesn't bring much to the stat-sheet outside the scoring column, but his scoring average ranks ahead of established names like Jaylen Brown and D'Angelo Russell among 2-guards. His 48.1 3-point percentage has produced 3.3 makes per game from beyond the arc as well.

The Pistons currently rank 18th in scoring and have consistently struggled there for years. Derrick Rose seems to have seized the reins of the offense, but the absence of both Reggie Jackson and Blake Griffin leaves Detroit searching for more. Head coach Dwayne Casey has entrusted the third-year guard with more minutes and shot attempts. Griffin and Jackson are never safe bets health-wise, and it could leave the door open for Kennard to continue producing at a career-best level.

Dennis Schroder - PG - Oklahoma City Thunder - 39% owned

With both Chris Paul and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander on OKC's roster, there shouldn't appear any room for a floor general like Dennis Schroder to leave his mark. Through four games, however, that hasn't been the case. Schroder's been one of Oklahoma City's best all-around contributors, averaging 14.0 points with 5.8 rebounds, 5.0 assists per game.

A reputably subpar defender and efficient sh0t-maker, Schroder is currently posting career-high marks in steals per game as well as percentages from both the field and 3-point line, respectively.

Schroder has firmly entrenched himself in the sixth-man role for OKC and has looked more comfortable in an offense that hopes to remain competitive even out west. If he's producing at this level in limited minutes, imagine the potential numbers he'll put up in the likely event of a CP3 injury or if the Thunder eventually decides to trade the future Hall of Fame point guard.

Cedi Osman - SF/PF - Cleveland Cavaliers - 27% owned

Cedi Osman was one of the few rays of sunshine during an otherwise lifeless 19-win 2018-19 season for the Cavaliers, posting 13.0 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game.

This year, Osman has admittedly gotten off to a slower start than expected. Despite providing 1.7 treys per game at a 41.7 percent clip, the former second-round pick is currently averaging just 8.0 points along with 1.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game.

The key for Osman has been an opportunity to produce, or lack thereof. The presence of Darius Garland and the early health of Kevin Love have pushed the third-year forward back in Cleveland's pecking order offensively to the point where his usage rate has dipped 6.6 percentage points.

And yet, hope remains. Osman has started all three of Cleveland's games to start the season. Despite Love's All-Star talent, he's never been one to possess a clean bill of health throughout the season.

The Cavs believe in Osman, as evidenced by the 4-year, $31 million contract extension given to him this past week. Patience might be required, but as Garland's seemingly inevitable first-year struggles inch closer and Love's body likely betrays him again, a similar belief in Osman could pay off when it's needed most.

Davis Bertans - PF/C - Washington Wizards - 46% owned

Washington lacks consistent offense outside Bradley Beal, which has given Bertans a more prominent role that he never had down in San Antonio. The Latvian big man is a shooter at heart who, aside from averaging 14.3 points per game, is canning 50.0 percent of his 6.7 per game attempts from beyond the arc.

Bertans's 3.0 rebounds per game leave much to be desired from a man who is 6'10'', but his 3.3 makes from distance ranks second among eligible centers behind only Karl-Anthony Towns. If you find yourself in need of some three-point help, there are far worse options than Bertans at a position where proficiency is relatively scarce.

Jae Crowder - SF/PF - Memphis Grizzlies - 27% owned

Memphis is highlighted by the young duo of JA Morant and Jaren Jackson Jr., but Jae Crowder seems to be fitting alongside them just fine in a city that's no stranger to his trademark hustle and toughness.

That defensive effort will always be present for Crowder, but it's now complemented by some of the best statistical production of his seven-year career. He's posting 10.3 points a night, but his 6.5 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game are career-high marks.

Shooting only 26.7 percent from downtown, Crowder may never return to the 35.3 percent mark he shot across roughly three seasons in Boston. With 7.5 attempts per game this season though, even a closer return to his career 33.8 3-point percentage could lead to a nice increase in the 2.0 looks he's making per game right now -- especially considering Memphis' No. 1 ranked mark in pace.

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