Using the waiver wire to your advantage can be instrumental in building an elite fantasy basketball squad. More often than not, these guys are just a flash in the pan – hot one week and ice cold the next – but every so often, a player pops up that can be a meaningful contributor for the rest of the season, making all of that scouring and research it totally worth it.
Fantasy Basketball’s Top Free Agent Finds
PG: Patty Mills, San Antonio Spurs
Mills is actually coming off of a terrible game, but prior to that stinker he had put up back-to-back huge performances. In those two games he scored 29 and 25 points against the Timberwolves and Clippers respectively, and did so with stunning efficiency. Mills shot 22/41 in those performances and looked like a legitimate scoring-threat for the Spurs. Tony Parker is still battling multiple injuries and could miss extended time, which would be a real boon to Mills' fantasy value. Mills probably won't worth owning permanently, but band-aid options such as Mills can go along way in keeping fantasy teams afloat.
SG: Kent Bazemore, Los Angeles Lakers
He's barely proven anything, but Bazemore has looked awfully intriguing so far as a member of the Lakers. In two games with the team, he's averaged 16 points, 2 assists and 2 steals per game. Bazemore is starting at shooting guard right now, but with Kobe Bryant's health up in the air nobody really knows how long that will continue. The 2nd-year guard is a nice source of points, three-pointers and steals, and will continue to be fantasy relevant as long as he logs heavy minutes.
SF: P.J. Tucker, Phoenix Suns
Tucker is a reliable role-player for the Suns, and has shown enough to be just as consistent for fantasy owners. Tucker is a fantastic rebounder for a small forward, which is arguably is biggest asset to fantasy teams. He's averaging 8.7 boards per game over his last 12 games, which is more than a lot of big men out there. Tucker's not a one trick pony, either, as he's proven to be an asset in the assists and steals categories as well. For as reliable and versatile as he's been it's a real surprise to see him only owned in 14 percent of ESPN fantasy leagues.
PF: Byron Mullens, Philadelphia 76ers
This is a completely speculative add, but if you see a potential asset like Mullens at this late stage of the season you have to roll the dice. Mullens wasn't a contributor this season with the Clippers, but last year he was a rock-solid fantasy option in Charlotte. He averaged 10.6 points, 6.4 rebounds 1.2 three-pointers per game last season, and it wouldn't surprise me if he approached those numbers in Philadelphia. After trading away Spencer Hawes and Lavoy Allen, the team has seemingly opened up a bunch of minutes destined for the sweet-shooting big man.
C: Jordan Hill, Los Angeles Lakers
Hill is producing enough over the last to weeks to help out fantasy owners in desperate need of a big man. In his last six games, the Lakers forward is averaging 10.5 points, 6.8 rebounds, 0.8 steals and 1.0 blocks per game on efficient shooting percentages, as he's proven to be one of the team's only defensive threats in the low post. His minutes have actually gone up since Pau Gasol returned, which suggests that Mike D'Antoni likes what he sees when they're both on the court together. That's an encouraging sign for a player whose minutes have wavered throughout the season, so he's worth a shot until his role changes.