Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

NBA Waiver Wire: Four-Game Fantasy Basketball Sleepers (12/15 - 12/21)


This weekly column is geared toward anyone playing in a head-to-head format, and especially those of you in weekly lineup leagues. It is a great idea to keep up with which players are scheduled to play four games during the upcoming week, as fantasy basketball managers can use this information to gain an advantage in games played over an opponent. Simply put, the more games played, the more potential there is for production.

Based on their respective four-game schedules, the following four players should be viewed as “sleepers” for next week. Advising fantasy owners to play the likes of LeBron James or Anthony Davis is a waste of time and effort; hopefully it is common knowledge that studs of that nature should be in lineups regardless of how many games they are slated to play.

Position Eligibility & Ownership Rate Based On Yahoo! Fantasy Basketball Leagues

 

Top Four-Game Sleepers (12/15 - 12/21)

C.J. Watson (IND, PG) - 7% Owned

Watson has spent the majority of this season recovering from an injury, but has returned to play in the last nine games. He has mostly come off the bench with the second unit. However, with the combination of his solid play and the struggles of Donald Sloan, coach Frank Vogel made the decision to insert Watson into the starting lineup.

Sloan was playing so poorly that he fell out of the rotation entirely. Watson has played well as a starter, averaging 18.0 points, 2.0 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 0.5 steals, and 3.0 three-pointers in his first two games. He has played more than 30 minutes in each. It is a small sample, but Watson has shown the ability to put up numbers as a starter in the past. He should be a nice asset in points, threes, and assists.

The Pacers are trying to find a combination that works, and Watson is simply a better player than Sloan. George Hill is still not close to making a return, so Watson should continue to have solid value in the short-term. His upcoming schedule is favorable, with games against the LA Lakers, at LA Clippers, at Denver, and at Minnesota. The Clippers are tough on point guards, but the other matchups are excellent. Watson will be a nice play this week.

 

Tyler Zeller (BOS, PF/C) - 22% Owned

Zeller has slowly but surely earned more and more minutes with his solid play so far this season. Coach Brad Stevens recently put Zeller in the starting lineup, and has to be pleased with the results. He has scored in double-figures in four of his last five games, with at least five rebounds in each. The big man is usually good for a block a game, along with stellar percentages; he is shooting 65.4 percent from the field and 83.0 percent from the charity stripe.

The problem with Zeller is that he is essentially in a time share with Kelly Olynyk, which limits the upside of both players. They are each logging about 25 minutes a game, which is enough to put up solid numbers, but neither is likely to put up a huge line either. Zeller is about as consistent as they come though, so if you are in need of big man stats you could do a lot worse than Zeller. This week he gets some juicy matchups, including games at Philadelphia, Orlando, Minnesota, and at Miami.

 

Patrick Patterson (TOR, PF/C) - 25% Owned

When DeMar DeRozan went down with an injury, it looked as though Greivis Vasquez was going to be the biggest beneficiary. Vasquez started out hot for a couple of games, but has since fizzled out a bit. It has been Patterson that has played more consistently in DeRozan’s absence.

Patterson is averaging 14.0 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 1.0 blocks and 2.7 three-pointers over his last three games heading into Sunday. His biggest value comes from his ability to knock down threes in bunches from the power forward/center position. These type of numbers make him worth owning already, but if Amir Johnson or Jonas Valanciunas were to suffer an injury, Patterson would become a must-start player. Given the injury history of those two guys, this is a likely scenario at some point this season.

Next week Patterson will face Orlando, Brooklyn, at Detroit, and New York. None of these teams are particularly strong defensively, so he is in line for a productive week. If you are looking for a big man with some upside, give Patterson a long look.

 

Rudy Gobert (UTA, C) - 19% Owned

Gobert has been a favorite stash target of mine for a while, and now he is getting the opportunity to get his name out there. He made his first career NBA start on Sunday, filling in for an injured Derrick Favors, and he did not disappoint. The Frenchman posted a full line of seven points, nine rebounds, two steals, and three blocks.

This is the type of line you can expect from the second year player. His offensive game is still very raw, but defensively he is a stud already. Gobert’s free throw shooting is not good at all, but he shoots for a high field goal percentage and will be a tremendous asset in rebounds, steals, and blocks.

The downside is that Favors’ injury is not expected to keep him out very long, so Gobert will likely head back to the bench when he returns. If you have the room to stash Gobert though, I would highly recommend it. I fully expect him to supplant Enes Kanter in the starting lineup at some point this season. It is only a matter of time before the Jazz get tired of Kanter not playing defense ever, and realize that they are better off with Gobert in the starting lineup and Kanter playing with the second unit.

Next week he will play at New Orleans, at Miami, at Orlando, and at Charlotte. All four games are on the road, but none of these assignments are too daunting. Even if Favors does come back quickly, Gobert has shown that he can still hold value in limited minutes. If and/or when he consistently receives starters minutes, he is going to do a ton of damage. Pick him up now and see how it plays out.

 

More Recent Articles

 

Fantasy Football Starts and Sits: Conference Championships Matchups Analysis

Welcome to our NFL Conference Championships matchups analysis and start/sit column for fantasy football. We'll be covering both of the AFC and NFC contests from the Sunday slate, helping you make the best decisions for your DFS contests this weekend. Be sure to check back regularly because this article will be updated as news comes in regarding injuries... Read More


Biggest Breakouts Of 2019: Wide Receivers

As we enter the initial phase of offseason activities you have recently completed a painstaking process of creating and managing rosters, with the goal of winning fantasy championships in 2019. Now, many of you have already shifted your focus toward planning your drafts in Best Ball and redraft leagues, while others are contemplating how you... Read More


Tight End ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward their owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


Conference Championships Fantasy Football Staff Rankings

Below you will find all of RotoBaller's fantasy football weekly rankings, tiers, player news and stats for the 2019 NFL season. Our Ranking Wizard displays our staff's rankings for various league formats, all in one easy place. Here's what you'll find: Weekly PPR Rankings Weekly Half-PPR Rankings Weekly Standard Rankings Dynasty League Rankings     Fantasy... Read More


Running Back ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, a sure-fire player is expected to reward his owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they end up as a season-long dud, though,... Read More


Dynasty Players to Sell in 2020

Pierre Camus and Chris Mangano share their top sell candidates for dynasty football leagues in the 2020 fantasy football preseason. Like and subscribe to the RotoBaller channel on Youtube to get all our latest podcasts and catch us on iTunes and BlogTalkRadio as well! Be sure to also tune into RotoBaller Radio on SiriusXM (channel Sirius 210,... Read More


Biggest Surprises of 2019: Tight End

The 2019 NFL season was anything but predictable. I mean, the Tennessee Titans made the AFC title game! Andrew Luck retired right before the season! [Insert one of many, many other things here, because all lists need three items but I couldn't decide between all the possible third options.] One position where things at the... Read More


Wide Receiver ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward his owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


Biggest Busts of 2019: Quarterback

The 2019 NFL season is over, and it's time to look back on what happened. 2019 was a year where some quarterbacks -- Lamar Jackson, Josh Allen -- leaped up to the top of the fantasy charts, while other guys faded from where they were expected to perform. Today, I want to talk about three... Read More


Four and Out: Fantasy Outlooks for Divisional Round Losers

For the four teams that were eliminated in the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs, the offseason has begun. For many fantasy football owners, the days have already started counting down to next season. Owners in dynasty leagues have started to mull over their decisions.  How some guys perform in the playoffs can certainly alter... Read More


Quarterback ADP Winners and Losers: 2019 Season Review

I've always believed that it is easier to lose a fantasy championship than to win it on draft day. It makes sense, as sure-fire players are expected to reward their owners with a lower risk-factor than the other way around and thus they're always drafter earlier. If they put up a season-long dud, though, you'll... Read More


Biggest Busts of 2019: Wide Receivers

After a very interesting season of fantasy football action, many owners were left with a bitter taste in their mouth from a few of the “elite” NFL wide receivers. While Michael Thomas dominated and Julio Jones was his usual reliable self, not all was good if you played it safe by taking a receiver early.... Read More


Quarterback Risers and Fallers: 2019 Season Review

This article will examine the biggest risers and fallers at the quarterback position, which proved to be the most impactful in fantasy leagues as is often the case. Of the top-25 players in fantasy this season, 18 of them played the QB position and none of the 18 scored less than 280 fantasy points on... Read More


XFL Fantasy Football Rankings (Preseason)

As of this writing, there is exactly one month until XFL regular-season action begins. On February 8, the latest upstart professional league will kickoff (again) with spring football. It goes without saying that we hope it goes better than the first time, back in 2001, and lasts longer than the AAF. Before you settle in... Read More


Wide Receiver Risers and Fallers: 2019 Season Review

We continue our series covering the biggest risers and fallers of 2019 with the wide receiver position. I'll look at both 2018 and 2019 statistical outcomes from every player, contrast their performances, calculate differences in each category and come up with the most prominent names going forward. This past season, receivers didn't dominate in fantasy,... Read More