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NBA Waiver Wire: Punting Small Stats (FT%, 3PM, AST) for Week 2

By Keith Allison (Flickr: Trevor Booker) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

If you went big heavy in your draft you may choose to punt one or more of the categories in which guards usually contribute the most.  You're going to have a hard time competing with guard-heavy or balanced teams in those stats anyway. If you play in a league that counts turnovers, maybe even double doubles, it's an even better idea to go big heavy and punt one or more "small stats" as bigs are less likely to commit as many TO as guards do, and more likely to rack up double-doubles.

Here are a few players you may still find on your waiver wire and should consider since they fit well for your punting needs.

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Waiver Wire Guard for Punting Small Stats

Tyler Johnson, PG/SG, MIA (26% owned in Yahoo! leagues)

With Dwyane Wade, Joe Johnson, Luol Deng and Amar'e Stoudemire all out of Miami this season, there are plenty of touches to go around. Tyler Johnson is the primary backup for Goran Dragic and should see 25-30 minutes per game, if the first three games of the season are any indication.

He went from 42% shooting from the field in his rookie campaign to 48.6% last season in just one year, and in his first 3 games this season shot 50% and even better than that in preseason (55.6%). That meshes really well with your big guy lineup, as you don't have to sacrifice much FG% with your guard spot.

He will get you three-four REB per game, low double digit points, one steal, a block every other game and 1-1.5 TO which is great for a PG who is playing minutes in the high 20s. Furthermore, he doesn't hurt you anywhere really. His FT% was just 68.1% in his rookie season but last year he improved to 79.7%, and at the start of this season it's 83.3%. It's just that he shoots only two per game, so it doesn't help much either. Two assists per game are not too bad and he does hit a three here and there, but nothing to write home about in either stat. It's the combination low TO and high FG% that make him such a good fit when punting "small stats."

One more thing. Goran Dragic trade rumors have been going around, so if that was to happen, Tyler could see his minutes, usage and stats take a pretty nice bump in time for the fantasy playoffs.

Other guard options:  Tony Allen (4% owned), E'Twaun Moore (15% owned), Andre Roberson (11% owned)


Waiver Wire Forward for Punting Small Stats

Trevor Booker, PF, BKN (49% owned in Yahoo! leagues)

A few days ago I wrote about Trevor Booker as a super deep league waiver wire pickup. He was owned in just 10% of Yahoo! leagues at the time.

Two games later and he is owned in almost half the leagues. That is a big jump in the right direction! Booker is averaging a double double (10.7 PTS, 10.7 REB) on 54.2% from the field and turned the ball over just twice in his first 3 games of the regular season. Those averages, including 1.7 STL and 0.7 BLK per game might be obtainable by Booker this season, especially since we have already seen Brook Lopez rested.

2.7 AST and six-for-six from the charity stripe so far this season, however, are not. He is a career 62% FT shooter, and his per 36 minute average in assists in the NBA is 1.6.  He is a waiver wire stud, and has room to improve even more on this Brooklyn team. And if you are punting any of the three stats we are talking about here, his value climbs even higher. Pick him up while he's still there.

Other wing options: JaMychal Green (30% owned), Jonathon Simmons (31% owned), Terrence Jones (39% owned)


Waiver Wire Center for Punting Small Stats

Cody Zeller, PF/C, CHA (24% owned in Yahoo! leagues)

With career per 36 minute averages of 12.4 PTS, 9 REB, 1.0 STL and 1.2 BLK with 1.7 TO on 47.6 FG%, Cody Zeller can be considered a decent fantasy center. But he is a center for the Charlotte Hornets. That means he has to battle for PF/C minutes with Marvin Williams, Frank Kaminsky, Spencer Hawes, and Roy Hibbert.

Hibbert had the starting gig in the first two games but went down to some knee trouble and until he returns Zeller has the increased opportunity to take over and earn some extra minutes. Also, it bodes well for Zeller that Hawes played more than 57 games just once in his last four seasons so his competition could get even slimmer. Moreover, the starting SF for the Hornets is Michael Kidd-Gilchirst who played only 7 games last season and underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum in his right shoulder early in 2016. If any of these injury prone players were to have a setback, Zeller could get a bigger role which would make him pretty fantasy relevant.

He has played well so far this season averaging 10.7 PTS, 5 REB, 0.7 STL and 1.7 BLK on 61.1 FG% in just 20 minutes a game. If he can earn more trust with his coach Steve Clifford and get minutes in the upper 20s Zeller could be the waiver wire add to your punt team that seals you your Fantasy Championship.

Other center options: Alex Len (40% owned), Timofey Mozgov (38% owned), Tyson Chandler (25% owned)

By popular demand, RotoBaller has aggregated all of our fantasy basketball NBA waiver wire pickups into a running list of NBA waiver options, so bookmark the page and check back often for updates.