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Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: Quick, Pick Up Tre Jones Now That He's Starting | TheSportsDay Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: Quick, Pick Up Tre Jones Now That He's Starting | TheSportsDay

Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: Quick, pick up Tre Jones now that he's starting

Donte Divincenzo #0 of the New York Knicks. (Photo by Joshua Gateley/Getty Images)

Special to Yahoo Sports

The halfway point of the regular season is drawing nearer, as is the trade deadline and All-Star break. This is the calm before the storm that is the second half of the season. This week’s column focuses on three players whose availability you’ll want to double-check on, and three players who remain available in at least two out of every three leagues. It delves into a couple of recent changes to starting lineups, discusses a potential ripple effect of the New York-Toronto trade, and identifies a couple of deep-league options. As usual, a list of recently recommended players is included at the end.

Jones thrived in his first start of the season during Thursday’s matchup versus Milwaukee, registering 18 points, six assists, five boards and one steal across 35 minutes. His Per-36-Minutes stat line for the season isn’t as robust as last year’s, but Jones is clearly capable of contributing impressive box score numbers when the playing time is there. This performance alone is enough to send a jolt of joy to anyone who has held onto Jones this long despite his underwhelming start to the season —and it’s also enough to produce a feeling of pure panic among those who recently decided to give up on him. If a long-term promotion into the starting lineup, or at least increased minutes, is looming — and it really should be given that Jones is the team’s best distributor — Jones will soon be snatched up in most leagues. Do yourself a favor and double-check to see if someone dropped him, and if so, go ahead and capitalize on that mistake while you still can.

Anthony is suffering through a cold streak of late, but he’s still maintaining well-rounded averages of 14.1 points (44.6% FG, 35.5% 3PT, 83.7% FT), 4.4 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.3 threes, 0.8 steals and 0.5 blocks in 24.9 minutes. Despite averaging a career low in minutes, Anthony boasts a career-high average in steals, showcasing his growth on that end. If Orlando’s backcourt is healthier during the second half of the season, particularly Markelle Fultz (knee), then Anthony might struggle to improve his stat line. However, Fultz hasn’t appeared in a game in almost two months, and it’s possible Anthony will end up taking on a more demanding role during the second half of the campaign. He’s worth adding based on his season-long upside.

Donte DiVincenzo, New York Knicks (44% rostered)

Small sample size alert! In the three games following the announcement of New York’s blockbuster trade, DiVincenzo has been on a tear, averaging 21.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.0 threes, 3.0 assists, 2.0 steals and 0.7 blocks across 28.9 minutes. DiVincenzo will undoubtedly cool off from a scoring perspective, but when he’s making shots, he’s the total package, a triple threat on offense and a versatile defender. Even when he’s not scoring much, he’s capable of contributing across multiple categories, and he’s clearly worth a look in most leagues based on how well he is playing since the significant shakeup that swapped out two ball-dominant backcourt players for a wing who’s more than comfortable operating off the ball. Trades like this tend to have ripple effects, and one of the obvious takeaways thus far is that DiVincenzo’s ceiling is much higher than it was before.

Nesmith has shined in four straight starts, averaging 12.5 points, 3.8 boards, 3.3 threes, 2.0 steals, 1.3 dimes and 1.0 blocks across 28.4 minutes. He brings a lot more to the table defensively than Buddy Hield, who has shifted back into a sixth-man role, so if Nesmith can continue to produce on offense, he may very well hold onto the starting gig long term. Myles Turner remains one of the league’s elite rim protectors, but Indiana has still struggled on defense in large part because the Pacers aren’t keeping drivers out of the paint. Coach Rick Carlisle has changed his starting lineup numerous times this season, so it might not be wise to assume Nesmith is locked in as a long-term starter yet. Nevertheless, his potential is evident.

After returning from a month-long injury absence, Nance has been solid through his first four games back. Boasting averages of 8.5 points, 8.5 boards, 2.0 steals, 1.3 assists, 0.8 threes and 0.5 blocks in 22.6 minutes during this recent stretch, Nance is proving to be a good fit alongside Zion Williamson. Injuries have been a recurring problem for Nance, but if he can stay healthy, he’s an excellent option in deep leagues with upside in standard leagues if his minutes rise.

Love isn’t consistent enough to rely on most of the time, in part due to Miami’s impressive depth and ability to roll out smaller lineups. However, when the team is banged up, which it is now, Love often steps up. Across the last five games, he is averaging 11.0 points, 8.2 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.0 threes and 0.6 blocks in 19.8 minutes. While Caleb Martin (ankle) and Jimmy Butler (toe) remain sidelined, Love is worthy of consideration in deep leagues.

Recent recommendations still rostered in less than 50 % of Yahoo leagues: Caris LeVert, Jaden McDaniels, Alex Caruso, Josh Hart, Jeremy Sochan, Trayce Jackson-Davis, Kelly Olynyk, Nick Richards, Keyonte George, Simone Fontecchio, Dante Exum, Goga Bitadze, Matisse Thybulle, Day’Ron Sharpe

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