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Roundball Stew

Warren Awakens

by Matt Stroup
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

If you’re still in pursuit of a fantasy title right now – or simply trying to claw as high as you possibly can in the standings – there’s pretty much one thing you’re looking for right now: last-minute waiver options. Here are a few that have caught my attention recently:

T.J. Warren

16.0 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.0 spg, 1.0 bpg in his last three games…  One game remaining this week (Saturday); four games next week

The No. 14 overall pick is finally getting an extended look in Phoenix, hitting his two highest minute totals of the season in the last three games (29 minutes on Sunday, 28 on Thursday). Warren hasn’t hit a 3-pointer since early December (and is just 4-of-17 on the season from distance), but is shaping up as an intriguing late-season option in points and, notably, field goal percentage. Warren has hit 71.0 percent from the field in his last three games (on about 10 attempts per game), and overall, in limited action, he’s at 56.9 percent on the season. As for the steals and blocks, what we’ve seen lately is a very small sample size, so I’d add Warren for points and FG percentage, and take anything else as a bonus.

Marvin Williams

12.5 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 1.3 spg, 1.3 bpg, 2.0 3s in his last four games… Two games remaining this week (Friday, Saturday); four games next week

You know we’ve officially reached April when Marvin Williams (averaging 7.4 ppg, 4.7 rpg this season) suddenly starts channeling 2014-15 Danny Green. But with Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Cody Zeller both out again Friday, it looks like Marvin’s somewhat ridiculous run could continue for as long as those two remain injured. With MKG joining Zeller on the sidelines the last three games, Williams has posted 15.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 1.3 spg, 1.3 bpg and 2.3 3s. At this point, I would put aside my lack of trust in Williams as a fantasy option and gladly throw him in my lineup until Zeller or MKG returns.

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Cleanthony Early

13.3 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 1.8 spg, 1.3 3s in his last four games… Two games remaining this week (Friday, Sunday); three games next week

He has scored 18, 12, 9 and 14 points in his last four with at least one steal in each of those games, most recently posting 14 points with six boards, two blocks and two 3s on Wednesday. I’ve generally been allergic to having Knicks on any of my fantasy rosters this season, but Early – owned in just 1 percent of  Yahoo leagues – is doing enough to at least warrant a look. Also worth considering on the Knicks if you’re truly desperate: Ricky Ledo, who posted an intriguing 13-6-4 line on Wednesday, but is averaging a not-that-exciting 10.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 1.8 apg, 0.8 spg and 1.5 3s (on 38.1 percent from the field) in his last four games.

Markel Brown

13.7 ppg, 4.3 rpg, 2.3 apg, 2.0 spg, 1.3 3s in his last three games… Two games remaining this week (Friday, Saturday); four games next week

Brown has yet to prove that he can sustain these sorts of runs, but these recent numbers make him well worth a flier if you’re in desperation mode and willing to take a risk. Brown is averaging 34 minutes per game during this latest three-game binge.

Iman Shumpert

7.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 1.5 apg, 2.3 spg, 0.5 bpg, 1.2 3s in his last 11 games… One game remaining this week (Sunday); three games next week

Shumpert is quite prone to the low-scoring dud, and his 17 points on Thursday was his highest scoring output since joining the Cavs (and just his fifth double-digit scoring effort in his last 20 games). With that said, if you’re able to do without much in the way of points, he’s an explosive option in steals and a respectable option in 3s who can occasionally get you a block or two as well.

Will Barton

12.3 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.0 spg, 1.0 3s in his last three games… Two games remaining this week (Friday, Saturday); three games next week

I would like to put Barton higher on this list based on his recent stats, but my caution comes from the fact that he’s producing these stats in just 23 minutes per game (not having played more than 25 minutes in any of his last three). At the very least though, with at least 12 points and seven boards in three straight games heading into the weekend, Barton looks to be re-emerging as a worthwhile option in deeper leagues.

Anthony Tolliver

10.4 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 2.4 apg, 2.4 3s in his last five games… Two games remaining this week (Friday, Saturday); three games next week

Tolliver is only an option in if you need 3s and need them immediately, and it’s hard to really recommend him when he does so little else in other categories (0.4 spg, 0.0 bpg during this five-game stretch). Granted, he has picked up 10 and eight boards in his last two games, respectively, and he does have four assists in two of his last three, so there is a little bit of potential elsewhere. I just can’t get excited about a player doing this little in both defensive categories, which is why Tolliver is last on this list of iffy options.

30-Deep Update

I lost Week 1 of the best-of-three 30-Deep championship, but in Week 2 I’ve stormed back thanks to Chris Paul’s obscene 41 and 17 (with just one turnover) on Wednesday, as well as 22 points from new utility man Jabari Brown (sorry Kent Bazemore) on Monday. If my current 7-2 lead holds up, it’ll be a one-week matchup to decide the title next week. I’ve gotta say, I’m feeling pretty confident. Or at least was feeling confident until I remembered that CP3 and the Clippers only play twice next week. Ouch.