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Fantasy

Fantasy Basketball Waiver Wire: Players to watch following Week 1 of the NBA season

Week 1 of the NBA season has come to a close and as players are becoming settled into new roles in a unique season, fantasy owners continue to seek ways to improve their rosters.

Based on performances through the first week of action, we've compiled a list of players to keep an eye on in the fantasy basketball waiver wire. Need a scoring edge? Another 3-point threat? Lacking in the double-double department?

Look no further, we've got you covered with several names worth plenty of consideration.

All owned percentages are based off of ESPN Fantasy Basketball.

James Wiseman, F/C - Golden State Warriors

Owned in: 81.6% of leagues

The No. 2 pick in this year's draft is owned in nearly 82% of leagues but based on what he's shown in Week 1 of the NBA season, there's no reason why that figure shouldn't be closer to 100%.

After finishing with 19 points (on 7-for-13 shooting), six boards and two steals in his NBA debut, Wiseman again impressed on Christmas Day with 18 points, eight rebounds and three blocks. Perhaps the most impressively surprising takeaway from Wiseman's first week in the NBA is that he shot 5-for-6 (83.3%) from beyond the arc.

Shooting above an 80% clip from deep is far from sustainable but Wiseman has proven to be more than capable as a 3-point shooter and will only continue to improve in all facets as he becomes more acclimated with the NBA game.

Darius Garland, G - Cleveland Cavaliers

Owned in: 50.7% of leagues

Speaking of becoming more acclimated with the NBA game, "DG the PG" has been nothing short of impressive to start off his second season in the league.

Through three games, Garland is averaging 19.0 points, 8.3 assists and 3.7 rebounds on .548/.500/1.000 shooting splits. Sharing the backcourt with Collin Sexton, Garland is clearly embracing more playmaking responsibilities as he has already recorded a double-double with 21 points and 12 assists in the Cavs' second game of the season.

The most encouraging part of it all? It's working. Cleveland's 3-0 start to the season suggests the team will continue to rely on Garland in a similar manner as the season progresses.

Harrison Barnes, F - Sacramento Kings

Owned in: 44.5% of leagues

In one word, the best way to describe Harrison Barnes is solid.

Owned in fewer than half of leagues, Barnes has been a steadying force in many ways for a Kings team that is looking to reverse misfortunes of years past. After opening the season with 21 points, nine boards and five assists, Barnes has recorded an 11-point, 11-rebound double-double followed by a 10-point, seven-rebound performance.

If the early season is any indication, you can rely on Barnes for much more rebounding than he's given in past years, making him a sneaky threat for double-doubles. Chances are, it'll come efficiently, too.

Alec Burks, G - New York Knicks

Owned in: 18.4% of leagues

Need a scoring punch? Early returns are showing Alec Burks just might be that guy.

Through three games, Burks has come off the bench to average 20.7 points per game, second on the Knicks behind only Julius Randle. Burks can attribute his hot start to some impressive perimeter shooting - he's shot 10-for-15 (66.7%) from beyond the arc to open the year.

Until Austin Rivers returns to the lineup, New York will heavily rely on Burks' production to remain competitive. He signed a one-year deal in the offseason, so expect him to continue to perform at a high level to raise his value as an impending free agent or, for a contender ahead of the deadline, a la Marcus Morris in 2019.

Darius Bazley, F - Oklahoma City Thunder

Owned in: 13.7% of leagues

Unfamiliar with Darius Bazley? Well, get familiar.

The 20-year-old showed flashes in his rookie season and now, after OKC completely revamped its roster last season, will be a key cog moving forward. In the Thunder's season opener, Bazley recorded a 15-point, 10-rebound double-double and added two blocks, doing so on 7-for-12 (58.3%) shooting from the field.

OKC is focusing on development this year, meaning players like Bazley will get plenty of reps and opportunities to contribute. His opening night double-double is the first of many.

Watch list players

Chris Boucher, F/C - Toronto Raptors

Owned in: 18.1% of leagues

Tasked with replacing some of the Raptors big man production lost over the offseason, Boucher finished with 22 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks in a loss to the Spurs last week.

Lonnie Walker, G - San Antonio Spurs

Owned in: 13.0% of leagues

Now a full-time starter, Walker posted averages of 15.3 points, 4.0 rebounds and shot an über-impressive 9-for-19 from beyond the arc in the first week of the season.

Will Barton, F/G - Denver Nuggets

Owned in: 25.1% of leagues

Back from injury, Barton has picked up where he left off last season, posting averages of 15.5 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists over the Nuggets' first two games of the year.

The views on this page do not necessarily represent the views of the NBA or its clubs.

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