Fantasy basketball waiver wire pickups and lineup advice for Week 14

Welcome to The Playlist: my weekly column that lets you know who and what to play — when it comes to music or other things in my rotation — for the upcoming week in fantasy basketball.

Each week, you’ll see a compilation of the pickups you need to make, lineup notes (who’s in and out of rotations), followed by key takeaways on the schedule.

So press play and shuffle through the latest fantasy basketball info.

🏀 Week 13 wrap up:

🏆 Top performer

In a battle of the current and former MVPs, Joel Embiid bested Nikola Jokic on his way to dropping 64.4 fantasy points in a win over the Denver Nuggets on Tuesday.

🗣️ Rumor mill

Yahoo senior reporter Jake Fischer is always keeping tabs on the latest intel from around the league and Dejounte Murray has emerged as the hottest name on the trade block now that Pascal Siakam was dealt to the Pacers.

🗓️ Schedule things you need to know

  • 12 teams play four games

  • The ideal streamable days are Tuesday (five games), Thursday (seven games), and Sunday (five games) but given your team build, it’s possible you’ll be able to stream everyday except for Saturday’s 10-game slate.

  • Nets, Lakers, Knicks, Jazz and Pacers play on Tuesday and Thursday

🎧 WHO’S IN MY ROTATION: players to pick up on waivers who are less than 50% rostered in Yahoo leagues.

Album: 21 Savage – american dream

Top streams for Week 14

Alex Caruso – PG/SG, Chicago Bulls (49%)

He’s one of the best defenders in the league and averaged 4.3 stocks in Week 13. He was a top 15 player in 9-cat leagues and with that type of production, he’s definitely worth adding in Week 13. Zach LaVine will miss one to two weeks with an ankle sprain, so not only are Caruso’s minutes safe, he’s producing. If he can stay healthy, he’s a player that could be a hold for a while.

Jonathan Kuminga – PF, Golden State Warriors (48%)

Before the Dubs were blindsided by tragedy, Kuminga was on one of his best three-game runs of the season, averaging 24 points with six boards and an impressive 58/58/90 shooting split. The Warriors have three fantasy-friendly games against the Hawks, Kings and Lakers, making Kuminga a good streaming option.

Aaron Nesmith – SF/PF, Indiana Pacers (32%)

I mistakenly lumped Nesmith into the casualties of the SIakam trade, but I was wrong. Nesmith started at SF and played 28 minutes in a narrow loss to the Trail Blazers on Friday night. He ranks 76th in per-game value over the last 30 days and can help fantasy managers with his efficiency, threes and stocks. Keep him rostered in 12-team leagues.

Alec Burks – PG/SG/SF – Detroit Pistons (36%)

Burks has been a much-needed bucket for the Pistons of late, averaging 19 points per game over the past two weeks, and has been the 86th-best player in 9-cat leagues over that span (26th in week 13). He’s good for points, threes and FT%, but don’t expect much else. Detroit plays four games, and his role seems solidified as the primary scorer off the bench.

Luke Kennard – PG/SG Memphis Grizzlies (31%)

Kennard is starting and playing various roles with most of the core roster out for an extended period. He’s averaging 23 fantasy points in his last three contests while averaging over 14 points per game. He’s capable of getting some rebounds and assists along with the threes, so I’d add him now that he’s earning the third most minutes on the team since Ja Morant, Marcus Smart and Desmond Bane have been out.

Kevin Huerter – SG/SF, Sacramento Kings (52%)

Editor’s note: Huerter was 47% at the time of filing

The Red Velvet is heating up and is always a popular stream when he’s locked in. He was the 40th-ranked player in 9-cat leagues last week, thanks to a 31-point effort that included seven threes on Thursday night. Add him while he’s feelin’ it.

“Feelin’ It” – Jay-Z

Marvin Bagley – PF/C, Washington Wizards (55%)

Editor’s note: Bagley was 47% at the time of filing

Bagley had a helluva debut for the Wizards, posting 20 points with 11 rebounds and five stocks on Thursday night. He followed that up on Saturday with 21 and 12 and a steal. Daniel Gafford is back but Bagley’s done more than enough to warrant streaming him — as seen by his 14 points with seven-rebound showing on Sunday with Gafford back. The Wizards play a Wed/Thurs back-to-back and finish the three-game week against the Pistons on Saturday in what could be a nice revenge spot.

“Hell of a night” – Schoolboy Q

Brandon Miller – SG/SF, Charlotte Hornets (54%)

Editor’s note: Bagley was 50% at the time of filing

I’ve seen Miller on waivers in 12-team leagues, and with those injuries still rampant in Charlotte, he’s a guy I’d be adding for Week 14. The Hornets play four games, and he’s coming off consecutive 23+ point outings with 7+ rebounds and over 48% shooting over the past two games.

The Hornets made it clear that they’re willing to part ways with anyone on their roster not named LaMelo Ball, Mark Williams or [Brandon] Miller, so he’s a player that I’m expecting to emerge as the season wears on with more opportunities coming his way.

Isaiah Stewart – PF/C, Detroit Pistons (42%)

Aside from claiming the top spot in Shaqtin a Fool this past week, Beef Stew has looked good since returning from a nine-game absence. He finished Week 13 inside the top 100 in 9-cat leagues.

He missed Saturday’s contest with an ankle injury, but the injury doesn’t appear serious since he’s listed as questionable on Monday. He’s one of Monty Williams’ trusted defenders, so he’ll play 30 minutes if his ankle holds up.

Jabari Walker – SF/PF, Portland Trail Blazers (29%)

It may seem early, but I don’t care. The Blazers have won two of their last four games with Walker starting at PF, and he’s giving them a low post presence that’s been missing all season. He reminds me of Paul Millsap because he can mix it up inside on the glass and stretch the floor. He’s only shooting 29% from distance, but he can hit one and offset it with his knack for getting to the line. The sophomore big is worth a look in a four-game week with his role expanding.

Nick Richards – C, Charlotte Hornets (29%)

Another kind-of-injured guy lands on the list, primarily because Mark Williams is without a timetable for return and doesn’t look close. Richards (ankle) was upgraded to questionable for Monday’s contest, and based on his numbers in January (averaging nine points, nine rebounds, and a block), he could have staying power for a while.

Shallow league streaming options in Week 14:

Deep league streaming options in Week 14:

Watchlist for Week 14:

Rotation news:

Hawks G Trae Young in concussion protocol

The play: He’s out indefinitely, and Dejounte Murray’s usage is undoubtedly going up. I don’t see an immediate add here.

Pistons G Cade Cunningham (knee) is expected to return this week

The play: Monty Williams’ reluctance to play Jaden Ivey meaningful minutes alongside Cunningham is an issue, so Ivey’s run could be winding down. Hopefully not, but I’d expect some drop-off coming soon.

Pistons F/C Isaiah Stewart is day-to-day with an ankle injury

The play: He’s listed as questionable on Monday’s injury report, and if he sits, Ausar Thompson is worth streaming. He had a career-high 22 points with nine rebounds in his last game with Stewart on the sidelines.

Clippers C Ivica Zubac to miss at least four weeks with calf injury

The play: The Clippers are splitting minutes between Mason Plumlee and Daniel Theis, but if I had to choose, I’d go with Plumlee. He offers more across categories and can play the roll-man spot better with James Harden than Theis.

Heat F Jaime Jaquez (groin) without a timetable for return

The play: A combination of Duncan Robinson, Caleb Martin and Jason Richardson will replace Jaquez’s minutes. Go for Caleb Martin for the versatility and Robinson if you need threes and scoring.

Schedule breakdown:

Daily Games Played:

  • Monday: 8

  • Tuesday: 5

  • Wednesday: 8

  • Thursday: 7

  • Friday: 8

  • Saturday: 10

  • Sunday: 5

12 teams play four games: ATL, CHA, DAL, DET, IND, MEM, MIL, MIN, OKC, PHO, POR, SAS

18 teams play three games: BKN, BOS, CHI, CLE, DEN, GSW, HOU, LAC, LAL, MIA, NOR, NYK, ORL, PHI, SAC, TOR, UTA, WAS

Teams with back-to-backs:

  • Monday/Tuesday: None

  • Tuesday/Wednesday: Thunder and Trail Blazers,

  • Wednesday/Thursday: Heat, Timberwolves, Warriors and Wizards

  • Thursday/Friday: Pacers

  • Friday/Saturday: Bucks, Clippers, Hornets, Mavericks, Rockets, Pelicans and Spurs

  • Saturday/Sunday: Pistons

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