Note: Yahoo roster rates (%) are accurate as of the time of publish and are subject to change.
Kyle Anderson, San Antonio Spurs (40%)
Some people must be stuck in slow motion when assessing Anderson’s game.
There may finally be light at the end of the Kawhi Leonard tunnel, but Anderson has been a source of fantasy gold over his last five games. With averages of 12.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 1.8 steals, and 2.0 turnovers on 23-of-43 (53.5%) shooting, there is simply no excuse for Anderson to still be sitting at 40% ownership.
Even if Leonard gets back out onto the court within the next 10 days—San Antonio has done an incredible job of keeping a clandestine potential timeline to return—this is the Spurs we’re talking about, and given the nature of Leonard’s injury, we know that Gregg Popovich will ease his franchise player back into routine action. That means there will still be room for Anderson to contribute, and he doesn’t have to dominate in any one given category to do so.
Jordan Bell, Golden State Warriors (2%)
“Early is on time; on time is late.”
Oh, if only more of us thought in this type of way.
Bell is going to be part of what the Warriors are doing sooner rather than later, and his sky-high upside in the blocks department has already been on display with his revenge game vs. Chicago. The rookie is an easy stash in leagues with at least 16 teams, and I’m keeping him on 12-team rosters in competitive, large roster formats.
Lance Stephenson, Indiana Pacers (9%)
Stephenson is the type of streaky player to consider utilizing while he’s on a hot streak, and that’s exactly what he’s riding with averages of 17.3 points, 7.7 assists, 3.3 assists, and 2.3 triples on a highly unsustainable 65.5% (19-of-29) from the field. Given the barren waiver wire situation in deeper formats, one more good game would almost undoubtedly trigger a surge in ownership.
Noah Vonleh, Portland Trail Blazers (5%)
If for no other reason other than desperation without Al-Farouq Aminu (ankle) available, Vonleh is now getting a real chance to show what he can do. Given Portland’s embarrassing depth across the board, the former ninth overall pick should have an opportunity to continue playing even when Aminu comes back so long as he can sustain his productivity. Over the last five games—three of which have included 30-plus minutes on the court—Vonleh has averaged 7.2 points and 11.6 rebounds on 14-of-22 (63.6%) shooting.
Norman Powell, Toronto Raptors (13%)
Powell is back in action, and his minutes have trended up in three straight contests (23, 27, and 31) since his return from injury. He’s been a solid play during that stretch with averages of 14.7 points, 3.0 boards, 1.7 steals, and 2.3 3-pointers, and there is reason to believe that it is only a matter of time until the UCLA product is back to running with the first five.
John Henson, Milwaukee Bucks (35%)
I understand the hesitation with Mr. Henson.
Given that Henson’s potential fantasy upside has always outweighed his reality, those who have played with fire more than once are tired of getting burned. But for the big man to be on under 40% of rosters is simply unacceptable, especially since his role has been consistent for almost the entirety of November. Thon Maker is not a current threat to Henson’s minutes, and despite a five-point dud thrown into the mix, the former Tar Heel has been delivering over his last handful of matchups, averaging 10.6 points, 7.6 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks on 23-of-35 (65.7%) from the floor.
Caris LeVert, Brooklyn Nets (16%)
Who wants to take another ride on the LeVert train?
Not I, said this writer.
Look, if 13 points, six dimes and two steals like LeVert had on Monday is considered a “good” game for our purposes when the Nets are missing Allen Crabbe, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, and DeMarre Carroll, what kind of margin does that leave for wiggle room when all three are back on the court? There are going to be some fantasy GM’s who chase their own tail in adding LeVert.
Don’t allow yourself to become one.