• The trade deadline has come and gone and frankly, I was hoping for more. The Bucks didn’t go get the shooter I wanted them to, none of the bigger contracts got moved. I thought we would see at least one of Kevin Love or LaMarcus Aldridge change teams. The Andre Drummond trade became the biggest headscratcher of them all. I don’t necessarily think that he was worth a lot on the trade market, but it’s definitely surprising that not even one contending team thought that he would help them down the stretch enough to give up a late first rounder for him. The Pistons got literally nothing for the face of their franchise. They’re just recreating the Bucks roster in Detroit thinking it’ll make them good. Those are the Bucks that weren’t good enough to be on the good Milwaukee team, it’s not going to pan out. If we had to go with watchability rankings right now, Detroit has to be at the bottom for me. Cleveland used to be right there but if nothing else, Andre Drummond is a trip to watch and being a keeper of stats for him must be fun. “Dre has 17 rebounds.” “In the game?” “No, in 47 seconds.”

    The All-Star break coming up means we’ll be scrunching the long matchup together into one Wire piece. Anyone that plays two one-week matchups around the six-day break is doing it wrong. A lot of these teams have just one game on either side of the break and it’s just not a big enough sample to get a good result. I wish I had something to say about the All-Star weekend, but I will specifically be out of town to go see a hockey game in St. Paul because I don’t want to watch the All-Star festivities. I just couldn’t be bothered to show interest in it. I also found out in passing that getting a ticket to All-Star Saturday night is in the realm of a thousand dollars, which is just a hilarious joke to me. I would rather pay $100 to sit in the nosebleeds in Detroit on a Tuesday night than $1000 to go to All-Star Saturday (or Sunday). Luckily, Pistons tickets are like 35 cents right now.

    This week’s waiver wire suggestions will really pull from the winners from the trade deadline. There weren’t as many as we would expect from the perennially disappointing deadline day, but we’ll ry to piece together what we can after the dust has settled.

    Week 17-18 Stream Table

    General key:
    Home games are in orange because basketballs are orange.
    Road games are in blue because blue is not orange.
    Green means heavy schedule because green means go.
    Red means light schedule because red means stop.

    Back to Backs

    Brought to you by Drake*

    *not actually

    Sun/Mon (of Week 16): ATL, MIA, UTA
    Mon/Tue (of Week 17): SAS
    Tue/Wed (of Week 17): POR, WAS
    Wed/Thu (of Week 17): none
    Thu/Fri (of Week 18): MEM
    Fri/Sat (of Week 18): CLE, DAL, PHX, UTA
    Sat/Sun (of Week 18): CHI
    Sun/Mon (of Week 19): MIN, WAS

    Working the Wire

    The trading deadline has given us a bunch of fodder for the waiver wire, where we can really start diving into the winners who might end up as a true league winner.

    Point Guards

    De’Anthony Melton: Now that Jae Crowder has moved on from Memphis and Justise Winslow remains out, it’s a big opportunity for Melton to be a steals specialist in every league. People seem to be on this so hop on before it’s too late.

    Reggie Jackson: The Pistons are over this season and Reggie Jackson is just going to run around scoring all of their points. Five of his last seven games were 20+ point outings and the other two were total disasters. We featured him last week and now I’m a little more confident in his ability to make an impact if you’re not too worried about the horrendous percentage crater.

    Ky Bowman: The most direct winner from the D’Angelo Russell trade is Ky Bowman unless and until Steph Curry returns. Bowman is going to be the starting point guard until that point and should really be considered in almost every league.

    Shooting Guards

    Shabazz Napier: Napier is a huge winner from the trade deadline since he should have plenty of opportunity to play on this bad Wizards team. I’ve been an Ish Smith backer in the past, but I think that’s just a personal issue. Napier had shown flashes of relevance in standard leagues during his time starting in Minnesota. He could definitely be a league-altering pickup even in standard formats.

    Damion Lee: The Warriors just kind of shipped as many bodies out of town as they could. Andrew Wiggins is going to take a ton of shots for them, but it seems like Lee is a major winner with D’Angelo Russell, Glenn Robinson and Alec Burks no longer in blue and yellow. He should get 30 minutes a night going forward.

    Malik Beasley: Here’s my inner monologue about Malik Beasley: I was hyped on him in the preseason and he’s been largely disappointing even when given an opportunity. Is it because the opportunity wasn’t consistent in a loaded Nuggets’ rotation? Or is he not that good and we’ll see that exposed when he plays more minutes than advertised on a skeleton Timberwolves roster. There should be a lot of wide open corner triples with DLo in town.

    Small Forwards

    OG Anunoby: OG has been dropping off a little bit of late but he seems like a guy to buy on with a good stat set. Kyle Lowry and Norman Powell are both missing time in the short term, so this is a good opportunity for OG to be a mid-round fantasy value as a steals asset.

    De’Andre Hunter: The Hawks are hoarding centers at this point but we’re also establishing that they’ve shipped out some forwards as well in Jabari Parker and Evan Turner. Admittedly, they weren’t getting run but one could assume if Parker came back from injury he would get some allotment of minutes. Hunter is going to keep getting 30 minutes a night so it’s really up to him to step up into that role and be a fantasy asset. The missed shots and the surprising lack of cash counters is holding him back.

    Tim Hardway Jr.: What does a guy have to do to be more than 50% owned? He’s doing a lot of the scoring with Luka Doncic on the mend and we’re well aware that the earliest Luka comes back is after the All-Star break, if that. THJ should be owned in every league as a source of points and triples.

    Power Forwards

    Jae Crowder: I think Crowder is a nice fit in Miami and he realistically should be a fantasy asset in deep leagues. He’s had an underrated fantasy season and seems to be bouncing back to the things that were exciting about him as a youngster. I think he probably takes time away from Derrick Jones Jr., who we just haven’t been sure about, and

    Juancho Hernangomez: Another guy that benefits from getting out of a crowded rotation in Denver. Should get some more run in Minnesota. He had some moments last season when Will Barton was out, so we’ll see if he can recreate that without much competition in front of him. Jarrett Culver hasn’t been good with any consistency and the absence of both starting wings (Andrew Wiggins and Rob Covington) opens up a lot in this frontcourt.

    Maurice Harkless: A new lease on life with the Knicks could be a boon for Harkless getting more fantasy love. It’s a crowded rotation of a bunch of crap, so maybe Harkless gets in there and produces some low-end value. Methinks the Knicks just don’t really like Kevin Knox, and I don’t think I blame them.


    Marquese Chriss: Chriss is a must-own for the Dubs with the mass exodus out. Chriss has such an interesting fantasy game and he should rack up defensive counters and boneheaded plays in bulk as he plays 25-30 minutes a night. Chriss might be the second biggest trade deadline winner after Christian Wood, who is well documented as someone worth picking up yesterday.

    Thon Maker: How pathetic is this? In what world do we have to actually consider Thon Maker as a dude worth rostering in fantasy? Unfortunately, it seems like that’s the case with the dearth of options in the Pistons’ rotation.

    Kevon Looney: The minutes are steadily ramping up here so a Looney/Chriss frontcourt is definitely in the picture where both guys get some big-man stats and creep into top-100 value in this important stretch. We’re still not seeing Looney over 20 minutes per game, but if that comes, he’s a definite pickup.

    The Stream Team

    PG: Austin Rivers – Heavy minutes and some 3-pointers? Maybe. I’m not super thrilled.

    SG: Gary Trent Jr. – Anfernee Simons left the Blazers’ last game against Utah with a concussion and Trent was playing a lot of critical minutes for this team down the stretch. If he’s going to be out there in crunch time for a team that needs every win, he might get enough volume to be relevant.

    SF: Vince Carter – I just want to take a moment to recognize that Vince is still playing and isn’t that bad. Top-100 guy over the last seven games.

    PF: John Henson – Another moment where I wonder how we’re still doing this. If Henson actually plays, there’s a blocks specialist to be had.

    C: Caleb Swanigan – We love Biggie. He got a start against the Jazz and mostly did nothing, including giving away a few crucial rebounds. Maybe he can score and rebound well.

    Miscellaneous Musings

    The trade deadline and a long week off gives us some fodder for the musings, which are becoming more of an undertaking by the week. I regret some things.

    Atlanta Hawks: I was giving the Hawks some flak for trying to go get Clint Capela in a non-competitive year, but they really got a good deal on him. Should be an interesting team going forward.

    Brooklyn Nets: I think the Nets wouldn’t hate skipping to healthy Kevin Durant. This season feels like a first round gentleman’s sweep.

    Boston Celtics: The Celtics kicked the tires on everyone and didn’t bring in anyone. Maybe they’ll be in the buyout market for someone like Tristan Thompson, which would make a lot of sense.

    Charlotte Hornets: Shoutout to Marvin Williams, the newest member of your Milwaukee Bucks. Best thing Charlotte has done this season.

    Chicago Bulls: Jim Boylen calling a timeout in a blowout loss to the chagrin of the Raptors’ broadcast booth is a microcosm of this organization.

    Cleveland Cavaliers: Why in the heck did they go get Andre Drummond? It doesn’t fit and they don’t have a clear strategy going forward.

    Dallas Mavericks: Here’s another team I’m a little surprised didn’t go buy something. It seemed like they were in the hunt for Galinari, .

    Denver Nuggets: I’m glad Malik Beasley got a new home where he’ll get more opportunity and it’s good for us in fantasy that the Nuggets are shortening their rotation a little.

    Detroit Pistons: The biggest piece of evidence that Andre Drummond is a dinosaur in today’s NBA is that abysmal return they got for waiting too long and holding an asset that just doesn’t fit.

    Golden State Warriors: Andrew Wiggins will shoot 25 shots per game and it’ll go badly.

    Houston Rockets: Gotta feel for PJ Tucker on this shortest team in 50 years. This can’t pan out  in a series against any team with a long, athletic forward or center.

    Indiana Pacers: I think I’ve decided to hit up a Pacers game in March. If anyone has any recommendations for Indy, let me know.

    Los Angeles Clippers: Not only did the Clippers beat the Lakers to Marcus Morris, but I think they might beat them to Darren Collison as well.

    Los Angeles Lakers: The presence of mind to recreate an iconic moment like that in midair was very cool by LeBron.

    Memphis Grizzlies: Grizzlies were huge winners at the deadline by consolidating a grumpy Andre Iguodala and a low-upside Jae Crowder who went to a great school into a younger upside play in Justise Winslow.

    Miami Heat: If the Heat got Galinari I think they were unquestionably the second-best team in the Eastern Conference. Sorry Toronto, love what y’all have done in the North.

    Milwaukee Bucks: Let Pat dunk. I won’t be watching any of All-Star weekend so hopefully he gets 2nd or something.

    Minnesota Timberwolves: I don’t think shuffling the deck and swapping D’Angelo Russell in for Andrew Wiggins makes the Wolves a playoff team in the West.

    New Orleans Pelicans: If the Pelicans don’t make the playoffs I’m going to be so upset for JJ Redick. I really thought he might get moved. Spoiler: they aren’t going to make the playoffs.

    New York Knicks: You would think the management and coaching staff would like the young players they have. What’s the point of getting all these kids if you don’t even want them to play?

    Oklahoma City Thunder: I like that the Thunder stood pat, even though I would have liked to see someone like Gallo in a Bucks uniform (Because I just want everyone, OKAY?). I like when a team sticks to their guns to make their first round playoff exit a little more interesting.

    Orlando Magic: This seems like a team that should have made a move. They seem stuck in neutral at this point.

    Philadelphia 76ers: This team is S-O-F-T (their words). Alec Burks and Glenn Robinson III don’t help that.

    Phoenix Suns: Really surprised they didn’t bring in anybody. I understand that Kevin Love wasn’t a fit purely on salary reasons, but after a lot of buzz they were going to find a way to improve, it was pretty surprising they stayed status quo.

    Portland Trail Blazers: I don’t understand why a non-call can’t be reviewed. It’s so disappointing that a great game gets overshadowed by such an obvious officiating blunder. Everyone except the officials could tell that was a goaltend in real time.

    Sacramento Kings: Jabari Parker gets to play for his fifth team in five years. So like… he’s not good y’all.

    San Antonio Spurs: It looks like there wasn’t as much interest in LaMarcus Aldridge or DeMar DeRozan as I thought, which is a little surprising.

    Toronto Raptors: The resiliency of this team keeps showing, as they’re now without Kyle Lowry for a few days and Norman Powell for an unconfirmed amount of time. They probably aren’t the second best team in the East on talent but they may end up there on record.

    Utah Jazz: Unfortunate that the goaltending will mar a big comeback against the Blazers in a game the Jazz needed too after dropping five in a row.

    Washington Wizards: I’m a little surprised Davis Bertans didn’t get moved even though the asking price was a first. Would have loved to see him in Milwaukee.

    Did your team make the moves you wanted? Mine didn’t. Let’s talk about it on Twitter here.

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