A look at five under-the-radar rookies; plus three players to consider adding off your waiver wire this weekend
POSTED: Feb 25, 2016 5:49 PM ET
Myles Turner is one of five rookies who have stepped up their game in the last month.
With Yahoo! fantasy playoffs only a few weeks away, let's take a look at five rookies outside of the top 10 picks who could put your team over the top:
Of all the players on this list, Turner is the least "under the radar". The No. 11 pick has garnered headlines and articles as he produces in heavy minutes for Indiana. Over the last two weeks, Turner ranks 36th in Yahoo! fantasy with averages of 17.0 points on 55.6 percent from the field, 70.0 percent from the free throw line, 6.0 rebounds and 2.8 blocks in 32.0 minutes for Indiana. He ranks fourth in blocks over this stretch, behind only Al Horford, Hassan Whiteside and DeAndre Jordan. He's crucial to the Pacers' success as he showed in their win over the Knicks on Wednesday, finishing with 24 points on 10-for-20 shooting. Turner is owned in 64 percent of Yahoo! leagues, so your opportunity to pick him up has likely already passed. If so, keep him on your radar as a possible sleeper in next season's drafts.
Like Turner, your chance to pick Jokic off the waiver wire has likely passed. He's owned in 54 percent of Yahoo! leagues and ranks 58th over the last 30 days with averages of 11.4 points on 47.2 percent shooting, 8.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1.3 steals. Over this stretch, he joins DeMarcus Cousins and Anthony Davis as the only centers averaging more than eight rebounds, two assists and one steal. He has four games with 20 or more points and 10 double-doubles this season, which is great for a rookie selected with the No. 41 pick in the 2014 Draft. As is the case with most rookies, Jokic has been inconsistent. But this could work to your advantage over the next couple weeks if a mini slump allows you to buy low on Jokic and acquire him from another team in your league. He's sure to see major usage for the Nuggets over the final two months as they sit 6.0 games out of the No. 8 seed out West.
The No. 10 pick out of Duke has received major minutes in Miami for most of the season. But he didn't start putting up solid fantasy stats until recently. Over his last four games, Winslow is averaging 12.5 points on 50.0 percent shooting, 8.0 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 2.3 steals in 33.9 minutes. Those steal numbers are good enough for 14th in the league over this span, which makes Winslow worth consideration if he's still sitting on your waiver wire. He's currently owned in 26 percent of Yahoo! leagues and should continue to consistently produce in Miami, especially if Chris Bosh (blood clots) is sidelined for the rest of the season.
The No. 22 pick has played 20 or more minutes in 10 straight games for the Bulls after reaching that mark only nine times in his first 26 games. The consistent minutes have helped his stats, but likely not to the point of making him an option in standard fantasy leagues. Over this ten-game stretch, Portis is averaging 10.0 points on 44.8 percent shooting and 6.6 rebounds. He isn't tallying assists, steals or blocks at a significant rate, which makes him more of a weekend plug-and-play option if you need points and rebounds. His role will likely diminish once Jimmy Butler returns from injury.
Who? The No. 40 pick out of Tennessee hasn't seen much action for the Heat this season. But that seems to be changing with Tyler Johnson and Beno Udrih sidelined. On Wednesday against the Warriors, Richardson tallied a career-high 15 points on 5-for-6 from the field and 3-for-3 from 3-point to go along with two rebounds, a steal and a block in 29 minutes of action. On Saturday against the Wizards, he played 35 minutes and collected five points, six rebounds, three assists and three blocks. The minutes will continue to be there for Richardson as long as Johnson is out, so keep an eye on him for plug-and-play consideration. There's no telling when the 6-foot-6 point guard will have a huge, breakout game.
Stat Line Of The Week
Nightly Notable: Anthony Davis
Anthony Davis pours in 59 points and hauls down 20 rebounds in the Pelicans 111-106 win over the Pistons.
February 21 vs. Detroit -- 59 points (24-34 FG, 2-2 3P, 9-10 FT), 20 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 block, 2 turnovers in 43 minutes
Adams has been consistently average all season for Oklahoma City. He provides mid-level rebounds and not much else. But his blocks have been on the rise lately with two in each of his last four games. Give him a look if you need rebounds and blocks this weekend. The Thunder match up with the Warriors on Saturday.
An injury to Jimmy Butler has opened up the door for McDermott. The second-year forward is averaging 20.0 points on 67.6 percent shooting, 2.3 3-pointers, 3.0 rebounds and 1.0 assists over his last three games. He's worth consideration if you need points and 3-pointers this weekend. The Bulls match up with the Hawks on Friday and the Blazers on Saturday.
Anderson saw increased action while Kawhi Leonard was sidelined for three games. And that increased action continued on Wednesday even with Leonard back in the lineup. Over his last four games, Anderson is averaging 10.3 points on 62.5 percent shooting, 4.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.8 steals in 28.7 minutes. Give him a look this weekend if you need a player to fill multiple stat categories, especially steals. The Spurs match up with the Rockets on Saturday.