• Hey guys, long time no chat.

    You may remember me from such programs as the ‘Bruski Breakdown’ or ‘A Daily Dose to be Named Later.’

    I’m back and one of the things I’ll be doing this year is a Saturday night breakdown of the waiver wire plays heading into Sunday waiver deadlines.  For those of you that use a FAAB (Free Agent Acquisition Budget) format, Sunday is a great day to have a weekly waiver run take place.  For my money, it’s the only way to go in terms of a format.  Daily acquisitions are laborious and if you play in a lot of leagues it’s just too hard to keep up with.  Add in the budgeting element and the strategic aspect makes a league really fun.

    Now as you know I compete in a number of big money leagues so as of right now I’m not going to be giving away budgeting strategies, but that might come down the road in the form of a premium product.  I figure if my competition is going to get a handbook for how to outbid me, that I might as well make some scratch off of it.

    Some ground rules real quick — I play in leagues that are deep enough to be considered 14 team leagues.  I’m not trying to limit my analysis to just the leagues that I play, but I find that talking about guys that would be available in 10- and 12-team leagues is a little bit obvious.

    And for those questions you should (shameless plug) try out our Hoop Ball Fantasy Pro service where yours truly and other fantasy pros will answer your questions in more of a client/consultant relationship.  Face it, no matter how much you like to handle all the controls — having somebody to bounce ideas off of can go a long way toward winning the prize.  And for DFS owners, it can be lucrative.

    So onto the waiver wire considerations for Sunday…

    Jeremy Lamb – Hornets

    Jeremy Lamb has been crapped on all season by the major sites and it’s a little bit weird.  After all, why would you downplay the value of a top 130-160 performer (9/8 cat) who has done his damage in just 20.8 mpg.  His field goal percentage might be a touch rich at 46.3 percent, but we’re two-thirds of the way through the season and it’s highly possible that he just makes shots.  The return of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was a sufficient reason to worry about his rest-of-season value, but now that he is out of the picture Chalmers is sitting on the same valuation as he had before he started slipping due to injury.

    Outlook: Should be owned in competitive 12-team leagues and all 14-team leagues.

    Mario Chalmers – Grizzlies

    Super Nintendo Chalmers has already produced must-own value in 12-team leagues this season, with top 120-140 returns and averages of 10 points, 0.8 treys, 2.6 boards, 3.8 assists, 1.3 steals and workable percentages.  He’s another guy that the major sites have missed.  A floor like his can only mean upside when, say, a guy like Marc Gasol gets hurt.  I actually like him better than Lamb because the Grizzlies are going to need to go small and that can only mean good things for the pace and fantasy value for all involved.

    Outlook: Should be owned in all 12-team leagues.

    Update: The trade more or less swapping Courtney Lee for P.J. Hairston is a net positive for Chalmers, but I wouldn’t go too crazy improving his outlook from what you see above.  There’s only so many minutes that Dave Joerger can roll with a two-PG lineup.

    Clint Capela – Rockets

    Clint Capela started off nicely this season, flashing the per-minute numbers that perked folks’ ears up heading into the year.  He has struggled lately and part of that may be due to the Rockets’ struggles, and also the sporadic addition of frontcourt bodies they’ve had available. Watching him in the Rising Stars game I couldn’t help but think that if the similarly-sized Kevin Durant had his strength we’d be looking at the best player ever.  What got me thinking that was watching how Capela is actually improving as a ballhandler and as a player in general.  With Dwight Howard being dangled on the trade block and the Rockets looking to make a big move, it’s entirely possible that he gets thrust into a bigger role.  He has top-175 value on the year in just 20.9 mpg.  If he gets up to 25-plus minutes he’ll be a must-own player.

    Outlook: He’s a solid stash in 12-team leagues and is a must-own player in 14-team formats.

    Update: After the trade for Courtney Lee his outlook takes anywhere between a 1-3 round hit.

    C.J. Miles – Pacers

    I know what you’re saying – C.J. Miles has been terrible lately and he has been.  The Pacers don’t look like they’re going to bend over backwards to play him and guys like Myles Turner are eating into the overall minute distribution.  That’s all fair and could very well end up being the status quo.  But Miles is a classic up-and-down player and in the last month he has hit just 33.3 percent of his shots.  If you rode him earlier in the year he was a mid-round value while he was hot.

    Outlook: He’s a gambler’s play if you have dead weight in a 12-team league and a bit more palatable in 14-teamers. He’s not must-own in either.

    Ian Mahinmi – Pacers

    Ian Mahimni isn’t a great asset right now with the way Myles Turner has jumped into the mix, but he still has solid late-round value on the year in just 24 mpg.  It doesn’t seem like the Pacers want to totally phase him out, so if you’re in need of a stop-gap solution at center he could be your guy.  Just watch the injury reports to make sure he’s good to go coming out of the break.

    Outlook: Worth a look in 12-team leagues and should be owned in most 14-team leagues, with a notable advantage in 9-cat formats.

    Courtney Lee – Grizzlies

    Among the most boring fantasy assets in the league, Courtney Lee doesn’t particularly like to shoot and the Grizzlies would love it if he would shoot more.  He’s going to have to now with Marc Gasol out, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he will. With top 130-150 (9/8 cat) value on the season in his 29.2 mpg, he could see his minutes jump up a bit and his scoring jump a bit and that would make him a late-round asset.  If you need a productive shooting guard he could be a cheap pickup.

    Outlook: Should be owned in all 14-team leagues and he’s a speculative add in 12-teamers. I’d call him a must-own player in 9-cat, 12-team formats.

    Update: After being traded to the Hornets his situation is pretty similar as things stand right now.  Any change in deployment is more likely to help him than hurt him unless the Hornets view him as a 25-minute player, which seems doubtful.  I’m sticking with the same valuations above.

    Meyers Leonard – Blazers

    I’ve said it on Twitter and here at Hoop Ball while we were developing the site but Leonard has been a massive bust and I just didn’t foresee the mental breakdown, or the lack of development.  He just looks scared and tentative out there most of the time and I’ve often thought the contract situation really messed with him.  As did the way Mason Plumlee took the reins in the frontcourt and never let them go.  There’s more — including the C.J. McCollum and Damian Lillard show not necessarily wanting to get their big man involved, and I don’t blame them when he’s passing up shots and generally not being quick nor aggressive.  Leonard looked great during the preseason and he has a sweet stat set — assuming he doesn’t turn Enes Kanter on the defensive side and try to box out thin air on every board chance, which is what he has done.

    Outlook: Just as he turned it ‘off’ the hope would be that he somehow turns it ‘on.’  He’s a stash candidate in 14-team leagues but nothing more. Also, he’ll go down as my Patrick Beverley of this season, and as longtime followers know I’m okay with that.  He should have only cost you a late-round pick, so the only real damage that is done is to my Bruski 150 rankings.

    Brandan Wright – Grizzlies

    Reports on Brandan Wright’s health are still fuzzy but with Marc Gasol’s season-ending injury the frontcourt is wide open in Memphis.  JaMychal Green would seemingly be on the radar, but he hasn’t been able to do much with a decent amount of opportunity so far.  The Grizzlies’ personnel certainly slants towards being an uptempo team, and Wright fits that model to the ‘T.’  Adding him now, absent a positive report on his health, would definitely be a leap of faith.  But when he’s running hot he can be a top 60-90 guy (9/8 cat).  Expecting that in the next 2-3 weeks is not advisable, however, so he’s a stash candidate at best.

    Outlook: Worth a look as a stash in 14-team formats, and 16-team owners or 9-cat owners might get a shade or two more aggressive.

    Shane Larkin – Nets

    Shane Larkin has been dropped by most owners and for good reason — he’s been terrible.  The good news, however, is that he is bringing back top 160-200 value (8/9 cat) in his 20 mpg on the year.  This is a case of the All Star break maybe being meaningful, as teams start to look at going in other directions and maybe this would be a time where things click.  He’s nothing but a flier pickup but the situation isn’t all that bad, especially if they swing a deal to get rid of Joe Johnson.

    Outlook: Worth a look as a stash in 14-team leagues

    T.J. McConnell – Sixers

    Yes, it’s the Ish Smith show in Philly but T.J. McConnell just isn’t going away.  He continues to hang just outside of the top-150 in a very low-minute role and during four-game weeks that can be useful for your 12-14 team league.  I don’t expect Smith to get hurt or moved out of his ball dominant role anytime soon, but especially if you need assists he can be that guy.

    Outlook: Worth a look as a low-end and/or streaming option in 12-14 team leagues.



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