Deeper Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Sleepers for Week 6 (2022-23)

The deeper a fantasy basketball league, the harder it is to hit a winner with your last few picks. It is also harder to find decent help from the waiver wire if your late-round picks don’t do you justice. If you picked up a few stinkers, don’t lose hope just yet. I will try to help you pick up a winner.

Here are mine deeper league fantasy basketball waiver wire pickups for the upcoming week and your fantasy basketball teams. These NBA players should be available in most leagues and they might just help you out, whether it’s a few weeks rental or a long-term fix to a problem your team is having.

If a guy on your team is frustrating you with his weak performances, give some of them a go. They might just be worth it.

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Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire Targets for Week 6

De’Anthony Melton (SG, PHI) – 14% rostered

While every casual NBA fan was confused reading stories about Giannis fighting an A-frame ladder on Friday, the actual news we were caring about for our fantasy endeavors was much more troubling: Tyrese Maxey went off the court injured after just 21 minutes of play and never returned to the game.

It has now been announced that Maxey will miss between three and four weeks while recovering from a foot fracture. Now, if you’re reading this, I beg you to stop doing so only for you to rush to your WW pool of players, smash that Add button next to De’Anthony Melton’s name, then return to finish reading this little post I wrote .

Okay, now that you’re back, it’s fair to discuss what Melton has done with Maxey partially or entirely out for the past two games Philly has played (that one against the Bucks and an affair with the Wolves on Saturday): 10-7 -6 with a USG% of 17.2 percent, and then 19-5-6-5-1 at a 24.3 USG%. See the difference and the upside?

Melton had started seven of his last nine games played getting back to his first time doing so on Oct. 28. It’s been six-of-seven starts for him of late, and two in a row part of Philly’s Friday-Saturday back-to-back run. That shouldn’t change with Maxey out and James Harden still a couple of weeks away from returning, too.

Melton bagged five triples on Saturday night launching 16 FGA (second-most all season) and going 7-of-16 from the floor. The scoring is cool and the points will inevitably go his way because someone other than Embiid has to put the ball inside the net at some point.

That said, Melton’s sweet appeal is to be found in the rest of the statistical cats: he’s averaging 6 RPG, 4+APG, 1+ SPG, and 1.0 BPG in November alone, playing around 31 MPG in the six games he’s appeared in this month. The minutes, though, have gone all the way up to reach 36 and 37 in the past two games. Must-roster, must-start, must-everything for the next two-to-four weeks at the very least.

Larry Nance Jr. (PFNOP) – 7% rostered

Zion Williamson present or not, Larry Nance Jr. will keep waiting from the Pelicans pine no matter what by the recent looks of it. Nance has not started a game this season in New Orleans even when Zion has missed time at some points, but he’s kept his 24 MPG mostly steady with just a couple of drops in playing time through November.

Nance has had some ups and downs this year, mind you, but he seems to have finally found his rhythm as his last week of play showcases. From the Nov. 10-to-18 span, Nance has played four games in which he’s scored 16+ points three times, pulled down at least 6+ rebounds each time, and blocked at least a shot in three of those four matchups.

Overall, through those most-recent four games, Nance has averaged 16+ PPG, 7.5 RPG, and 1.5 APG. Last Friday, facing Boston, he stole three rocks while blocking a couple of shots for his second-highest fantasy-point score of the season (36) after putting up 38 in the first game of November (11-8-5-4- 1 against the Lakers).

Nance will not take over any of the SF/PF/C positions with the likes of Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson, and Jonas Valanciunas around, but he’s doing more than enough coming off the pine and putting up numbers in the classic cats with odd tokens popping up the three-points-made/steals/blocks columns.

The shooting percentages are ridiculous (68/45/80 splits) albeit on very low volume (6.5 FGA, 0.7 3PA, 1.3 FTA), mind you.

Tyus Jones (PGMEM) – 6% rostered

Is it time!? It might very well be, folks! Truth be told, it is sad to have Ja Morant suffering any kind of injury that prevents us from watching him play basketball on a nightly basis. That said, when things like that happen, you just have to take advantage of the situation and jump all over the next-man-up as soon as you can. Enter Tyus Jones.

Jones was an extraordinary replacement when Morant missed time last season. This year, he’s only started a couple of games but when he did he was absolutely incredible: 23-10 dub-dub on points and assists (33 MP against Utah on Oct. 29) and a 17-3-5-3 outing his second time starting (36 MP against Washington on Nov. 13).

Little Tyus can do a little bit of everything, keeps his turnovers low (barely one a pop), and has some three-point prowess baked into his game. Jones is one of only five players in the NBA with fewer than three starts this season averaging 10+ PPG.

Jones has scored 10+ points in 10 of his 17 games played and in those matches he also put up averages of 2+ RPG, 4.5 APG, and nearly 1.0 SPG.

Immanuel Quickley (PGNYK) – 5% rostered

Just a few hours after Shams Charania dropped his latest report with bits of information about who’s available in trade talks–one of those players being Immanuel Quickley–the Knicks faced Golden State away from home after having won back-to-back contests against Utah and Denver.

Obviously, the Knicks went on to lose for the first time with IQ putting up a dud and a 0-for-5 shooting night. That sucked, but IQ has been much better than that this season which I’ve come to label a defensive-breakout year after that part of the game never really showed up in his first two years in the L.

Quickley has played more of late with Derrick Rose and Quentin Grimes removed from the rotation (entirely) by Tom Thibodeau recently, turning the Knicks into a nine-man squad of late. Quickley usually alternates good and bad outings, but overall he should be a viable play for GMs in deeper formats looking for some help at the one and two positions.

IQ does a little bit of everything nightly. In the last week (four games played), he averaged 12 PPG, 3.5+ RPG, 3.5 APG, and 2.5 SPG. He’s not going to hoist 17 or 10 FGA as he did against OKC last Sunday and Utah on Tuesday, but you can count on some 6+ FGA nightly dropping at a 36% clip (expected to positively regress at least a bit considering IQ has shot 39% from the floor and 36% from three-point range in his career).

Quickley is also leading the second unit in APG (3.2), only behind Jalen Brunson’s 6.8 in the Knicks as a whole while only turning the ball over 1.4 times a pop (Brunson is averaging 1.8 TOPG).

Caleb Martin (SF, MIA) – 3% rostered

The Miami Heat are coming off the weirdest game ever in the post-COVID era of the NBA: just seven players logged at least one minute against Washington on Friday with eight of them dressing (the minimum allowed) but one not truly available and just sitting on the bench so Miami didn’t have to forfeit the game.

One of the lucky ones, though, was Caleb Martin. Caleb, of the Martin Twins lore, has started on the Heat wings every single time he’s appeared in a game. Not only that, but his minutes have gone from 27 MPG in his first seven games to an unreasonable 35 MPG (!) in his last eight. In fact, Martin has not logged fewer than 31 minutes of play in the past five games over a span of 10 days.

Martin is not just doing cardio in those minutes spent on the court, mind you. He’s hoisting a palatable 8+ FGA on the season and a healthier 9.5 FGA in the past six games (two weeks) through Saturday. Not only that, but he’s actually hitting them nicely going 25-of-57 in that span for a solid 43.8% from the floor having bagged 2+ treys in four of those six games.

The usage rate has remained below a 15% figure for most of the games but the sky-high minutes have forced Martin to shoot the rock as something more than a pure spot-up shooter would. The per-minute efficiency is hurting, obviously, but staying on the court for so long has allowed Martin to put up numbers just on brute force: thus the 5 RPG, 2.5+ APG, and 1+ SPG averages in the past two weeks.

I just made this thing up but Martin is (almost, missing by just 0.1 BPG) one of only 34 players averaging a holy baseline of 8-4-2-1-0.5 through Saturday. Among those 34, only Martin and three more players (Shai, Donovan Mitchell, and Mikal Bridges) boast 40/40/80 shooting splits on top of that.

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