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Basketball Pickups: Donte DiVincenzo goes off in Charlotte

Maxey is a top-20 fantasy option moving forward
The Rotoworld Basketball Show crew examines Tyrese Maxey's emergence as one of the 'best guards in the Eastern Conference' and why he can be a top-20 option the rest of the way.

Having played three games without RJ Barrett (migraine), the Knicks lost a second starting guard during their November 15 win over the Hawks. Quentin Grimes exited that game with a left wrist injury, and he was held out of wins over the Wizards and Hornets. That freed up a spot for Donte DiVincenzo (5% Yahoo), who played well against Washington and followed that up with one of the best games of his career. DiVincenzo hit a career-high seven 3-pointers in the win over Charlotte, scoring 25 points with three rebounds, three assists, three steals, and one blocked shot.

Ranked outside the top 150 in 9-cat per-game value for the season, DiVincenzo has been a 10th-round player over the last two weeks. His value moving forward will depend on Grimes’ availability, but the former Villanova standout shooting 11-of-18 from three over his last two games can’t be overlooked. DiVincenzo may not be as good a fantasy option as Josh Hart, but Saturday’s performance should put him on the radar in deep leagues. The Knicks will play three games in Week 5, with Monday’s game in Minnesota being followed by home matchups with the Heat (Friday) and Suns (Sunday). Maybe that schedule is used as a reason to hold out Grimes for another game; if so, managers who didn’t add DiVincenzo will need to check their waiver wires to ensure he isn’t a free agent.

Let’s take a look at a few more top pickups from Saturday.

Dyson Daniels (35%) and Jordan Hawkins (36%)

Saturday’s game against the Timberwolves was the second game in as many nights for the Pelicans, so Zion Williamson didn’t play. His absence opened up a spot in the starting lineup for Hawkins, while Dyson continues to start with CJ McCollum (lung) still sidelined. Hawkins finished the one-point defeat with 15 points, two rebounds, four assists, one steal, and three 3-pointers in 37 minutes, while Daniels produced 13 points, five rebounds, six assists, one steal, and one 3-pointer in 37 minutes. They have similar rostered percentages, but Daniels’ value should hold steady. As for Hawkins, his next shot at starting may not be until the end of Week 5, when the Pelicans play another back-to-back.

Alex Caruso (37%)

Caruso has started Chicago’s last two games and hit double figures in scoring in each of his last five appearances. While there is the concern of having him defend opposing power forwards, which happened at times during Saturday’s win over the Heat, Caruso brings enough to the table to be worth adding at this point. His stat line against Miami (11/1/3/1/1 with two 3-pointers in 29 minutes) wasn’t elite, but Caruso’s proven to be a better option than any of the other players Billy Donovan has started next to Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan. Chicago playing four games without a back-to-back is another reason why managers should consider adding Caruso, who’s ranked just outside the top 50 in 9-cat per-game value.

Santi Aldama (20%)

Aldama hasn’t started any of the six games he’s appeared in this season, but he’s proven to be more valuable than other players tabbed by Taylor Jenkins to receive a spot start. Aldama played 36 minutes off the bench in Saturday’s win over San Antonio, finishing with 17 points, 10 rebounds, three assists, one steal, one block, and one 3-pointer. While the Grizzlies won’t play a back-to-back in Week 5, the team’s lengthy injury report makes Aldama more than just a streamer, especially if he can consistently approach starter’s minutes without taking on that specific role.

Pat Connaughton (5%)

With Khris Middleton being held out of Saturday’s game against the Mavericks, the second of a back-to-back for the Bucks, Andre Jackson Jr. moved into the starting lineup. However, it would be Connaughton who was more valuable to fantasy managers. Playing 35 minutes off the bench, he accounted for 16 points, five rebounds, three assists, two steals, and four 3-pointers, shooting 6-of-12 from the field. Jackson went scoreless, playing 12 minutes and accumulating just two assists. Managers who didn’t stream Connaughton will simply have to move on, as the Bucks won’t play another back-to-back until Week 8. If everyone manages to stay healthy, he’ll be a schedule play and not much else.