The key to winning your fantasy basketball league is not how well you draft, but the players you add off waivers. This is extremely important because securing hidden talent could replace those late-round selections that aren’t having the best season. Here at NFS, we provide the best picks for players you should grab off waivers now before it is too late. As always, both opportunity and performance are taken into consideration for these players. Learn to think like a NERD! Check out the NBA Player Consistency Rankings to see how consistent, good or bad, players are, determined by stats, not hunches or anecdotal evidence!
Anfernee Simons, SG/PG, Portland Trail Blazers
Constant injuries to Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum have given Anfernee Simons an opportunity to play more minutes throughout the entire season. He has stepped up in a major way for the Blazers, including scoring 43 points in a game. In his last 10, Simons has averaged 17 points and four assists a game while shooting 44 percent from beyond the arc. He’s been even better in the last four games, all of which he’s started in. He’s averaged nearly 24 points a game during that stretch. He’s a perfect waiver wire pick-up as long as CJ and Dame continue to miss games.
Jaylen Nowell, SG, Minnesota Timberwolves
Slowly working his way through the team’s system, Jaylen Nowell has become an underrated prospect for the Timberwolves. he’s had to step up with the team also dealing with COVID-related issues. In his last 10 games, Nowell has averaged 13 points, three rebounds, and three assists per game. He’s also shot above 50 percent from the field during those games. He could improve with his three-point shooting, as he’s only hit around 31 percent on nearly four attempts. But he’s certainly one of the less popular names on waivers.
Aaron Wiggins, SG, Oklahoma City Thunder
Major props need to be given to the front office of the Oklahoma City Thunder for the work they continue to put in to produce high-quality players with their draft selections. Aaron Wiggins is another example of a solid player from the 2021 draft. In his last 10 games, Wiggins has averaged 12 points, four rebounds, and around a steal per game. He’s also shot above 50 percent from the field during those games. He joined a talented Thunder draft class alongside Josh Giddey, Tre Mann, and Jeriamah Earl-Robinson.
Marcus Morris, SF/PF, Los Angeles Clippers
Marcus Morris has been a reliable veteran for multiple franchises throughout his career. That only continues with the Los Angeles Clippers who he has now spent three seasons with. Injuries to Paul George and Kawhi Leonard have given Morris a number one option in the offense along with Reggie Jackson. In his last seven games, Morris has averaged 21 points, six rebounds, and three assists per game. He’s also shot 40 percent from beyond the arc in the same games. Morris just needs to stay healthy if he wants to be a reliable fantasy option because he has already missed a handful of games this season.
Brandon Clarke, PF/C, Memphis Grizzlies
Playing a reduced role, Brandon Clarke has still found a way to produce effectively for the Grizzlies who are looking to turn the corner. In his last eight games since returning from injury, Clarke has averaged 13 points, six rebounds, and 1.2 blocks per game. He’s also shot 70 percent from the field in those same games. the Grizzlies have been 8-0 during that stretch. He might not be a future starter for the team with Steven Adams and Jaren Jackson Jr., but he can be a huge contributor off the bench and a solid waiver wire candidate.
Jarred Vanderbilt, PF, Minnesota Timberwolves
Jarred Vanderbilt is another player in the Timberwolves organization who has worked his way up from being a second-round selection to a starter for the team. He’s been a solid defensive anchor along with Anthony Edwards. In his last 10 games, Vanderbilt has averaged eight points, 12 rebounds, and nearly two steals a game. He’s averaged nearly four offensive rebounds as well. He’s been extremely efficient, shooting 50 percent from the field. He has a very unique playstyle, but still stuffs the stat sheet night in and night out. He’s an effective pickup with a high upside.
Daniel Gafford, C/PF, Washington Wizards
While Montrezl Harrell continues to miss games with COVID, Daniel Gafford has shown a lot of promise as the full-time starting center for the Wizards. In the last 10 games, Gafford has averaged 12 points, eight rebounds, and nearly two blocks per game. He’s also been extremely efficient, shooting around 75 percent from the field in those same games. He’s returning to a reduced role when Harrell returns. But even then, he’s proved to be a reliable player off waivers as he splits time.
Nic Claxton, C/PF, Brooklyn Nets
Injuries to the frontcourt of the Nets have given Nic Claxton a great opportunity to play more minutes with the trio of superstars the Nets have. Claxton had fit extremely well as he doesn’t need to have the ball to be effective off pick and rolls and offensive rebounds. In his last 10 games, Claxton has averaged 14 points, seven rebounds, a steal, and 1.6 blocks per game. It’s unclear when players like LaMarcus Aldridge will eventually return. But Claxton still brings major upside with the interior defense that others on the roster don’t.