The Wire Troll: Bones Hyland Delivering in Denver
Bones Hyland is starting to pick up his offensive game. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Welcome back to another week of Fantasy basketball. The Trade Deadline featured a frenzy of activity, so be sure to scope out the waiver wire for Fantasy opportunities that some of these moves created.
This week, Luka Doncic went off for a career high 51 points; Pat Connaughton busted a finger (possibly opening the door for Wesley Matthews); and the James Harden for Ben Simmons deal headlined a wild trade deadline.
And now, let’s get to this week’s…
Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Picks
Bones Hyland, PG, Denver Nuggets (ESPN: 1 per cent; CBS: 14 per cent): With Monte Morris (concussion) out, we’re getting a chance to see what Hyland can do, and so far the rookie has impressed. While he didn’t get a ton of minutes on Friday, on Tuesday Hyland went off for 22 points, six boards, four treys and three dimes, and while he hasn’t shot quite as well from beyond the arc this month, the rest of his game is trending in the right direction. Coming exclusively off the bench until Friday, he hasn’t overwhelmed in rebounding, but is doing a bit of everything. Hell, Hyland even landed a deal with Under Armour recently! If he keeps shooting the way he did on Tuesday (6-for-12 from the field, 4-for-7 from downtown, 6-for-7 from the line), he’s going to quickly become a serious Fantasy asset. Denver’s 2021 first round pick (26th overall), Hyland is very athletic and has a chance to be a nice combo guard threat off the bench in time — one capable of breaking some ankles (see video below).
Devin Vassell, SG/SF, San Antonio Spurs (ESPN: 8.7 per cent; CBS: 47 per cent): We recommended Vassell back in early November, and he proved us right by jacking up plenty of treys that month before cooling with his shooting touch in December. He bounced back with more buckets last month, and although his PT is down a smidge in February, we’re back to give him more love now based on him averaging 19 points over the last two games. Vassell is a solid on-ball defender who’s been performing as a top 35 shooting guard, so give him another look as it seems he’s going to benefit from the Derrick White to Boston trade.
Willy Hernangomez, C, New Orleans Pelicans (ESPN: 1.6 per cent; CBS: 10 per cent): Hernandez has been cleared after missing four games in Covid protocol, and while his PT had been inconsistent, he’d been putting up some solid scoring and rebounding numbers before his absence. In fact, he averaged close to a double-double last month, so if he can regularly earn 20 minutes per game, he’s capable of providing value, making him a worthwhile deep league option.
- New Cavalier Caris LeVert went off for 22 points, five assists, three steals, one trey and one block on Friday against his former Indianapolis teammates to help Cleveland win its fifth straight and continue to push for the top seed in the East. His bucket count is way up lately, so enjoy the ride if you own him.
- In early December, we lauded the Bulls’ addition of DeMar DeRozan, and he just keeps blowing us away. On Friday, he poured in another 35 points — his fourth straight game with at least than many (and career high-tying fifth straight with 30 or more). In December, his shooting kept improving, and while he didn’t sink as many buckets in January, he’s been jacking up more treys this month. DeRozan is posting a career-best 10 buckets per game this season. Stud City.
- In his Indy debut, Tyrese Haliburton put up a nice effort, pouring in 23 points with three steals. His touches are up lately, and he’s taken advantage of the PT boost he’s received in his sophomore season.
- Minnesota had been on a nice roll, but has now lost back-to-back games; however, don’t blame Anthony Edwards. He flirted with a triple double on Friday (31 points, eight assists, six boards) while adding a block, after pouring in 26 points in Wednesday’s loss. Edwards hasn’t been getting to the line as much in the last couple of months, and we’d like to see that trend reverse, because he’s going need to draw more fouls to become a truly elite player.
- Joel Embiid struggled from the field on Friday (8-for-25) as he scored just 25 points. He more than made up for it with 19 boards, five blocks and a steal, but with Harden arriving soon, perhaps Embiid owners should prepare themselves for lower point totals. Embiid’s touches have risen as the season has gone along, but that will likely change soon, knowing how much The Beard tends to dominate the rock.
- Simmons finally got his Philadelphia freedom, but now what? We don’t yet know when he’ll make his Nets’ debut, or if he’ll ever be able to address his flaws (lack of three-point shooting, poor FT accuracy, and, of course, personality issues).
RotoRob Tune of the Day
Brighton, England’s Baby Charles had a soul sound that came straight out of the ’70s, yet was recorded over 30 years later. From its only album, here’s the band’s first ever single, “No Controlling Me.”