Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Pickups: Add Cody Zeller if you need a big man

Dalton Del Don
·3 min read

Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic (43% rostered)

Anthony was a popular fantasy add after Markelle Fultz tore his ACL and went down for the season, but he was later dropped by many teams thanks to a cold shooting stretch. But the rookie has looked much better of late, and while Anthony’s jumper is a work in progress, he’s locked in as Orlando’s starting point guard and well worth adding, available in nearly 60% of Yahoo leagues.

Ivica Zubac, Los Angeles Clippers (39% rostered)

Zubac has double-doubled in three of the past five games despite coming off the bench, and he’s quietly been a top-75 fantasy producer this year per-36 minutes. This Clippers team is depleted right now with both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George expected to miss the next week due to health and safety protocols, so a bigger short-term role should be there. Zubac is still just 23 years old, would be leading the league in FG% right now if he qualified and remains available in more than 60% of Yahoo fantasy leagues.

Thaddeus Young, Chicago Bulls (11% rostered)

Wendell Carter Jr. is out at least the next month after suffering a severe quad strain, and Daniel Gafford simply doesn’t look ready, so Young is going to see a nice increase in minutes and role moving forward. He was a top-70 fantasy player four straight seasons before last year’s injury-plagued campaign, so Young needs to be scooped up in deeper fantasy leagues.

Reggie Jackson, Los Angeles Clippers (32% rostered)

With Pat Beverley (knee), Paul George, and Kawhi Leonard all sidelined, Jackson has averaged 18.0 points, 7.5 rebounds, 7.0 assists, and 38 minutes over the last two games. He’s worth grabbing in the short term for those in need of scoring and/or threes.

Cody Zeller, Charlotte Hornets (17% rostered)

He moved back into the starting lineup Wednesday and double-doubled while pulling down 14 boards and playing nearly 30 minutes. There’s not a ton of fantasy upside here, but for those searching for a big man, Zeller is now an option back in the starting five (Bismack Biyombo saw just nine minutes off the bench Wednesday).

Cody Zeller #40 of the Charlotte Hornets
Cody Zeller is a prime option for those in need of a big man. (Photo by Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)

Jae Crowder, Phoenix Suns (41% rostered)

He’s starting and seeing good minutes with Devin Booker and Dario Saric out, checking in as a top-60 fantasy producer over the last week. Crowder has fired up 29 threes over the last three games, and he’ll continue to benefit from having Chris Paul as his PG and will be worth using in fantasy leagues until Phoenix gets healthier.

Wayne Ellington, Detroit Pistons (46% rostered)

Few, if any, players in the league are shooting better than Ellington right now, as he’s a scorching 58.9% from downtown over the last eight games while attempting nearly 10 per game (46/78), a span in which he’s been a top-60 fantasy player in 9-cat leagues. Ellington leads the NBA in shooting percentage from behind the arc (53.2%) this season and ranks #6 in threes per game (3.6), yet remains available in 54% of Yahoo leagues.

Naz Reid, Minnesota Timberwolves (39% rostered)

Reid is a repeat offender on this list but deserves another mention given he’s erroneously still available in so many leagues. Reid will lose all of his fantasy value as soon as Karl-Anthony Towns returns, but he’s a must-start until then, as the big man has quietly ranked as a top-30 player over the last two weeks (14.3 ppg, 1.3 3pt, 1.0 spg, 2.7 bpg) and as a top-45 player when starting (nine games) this season. Reid deserves more fantasy respect.

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