Houston Rockets center Clint Capela is in the midst of an outstanding season, but he is expected to miss four to six weeks with ligament damage to his thumb, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. This will force fantasy owners to look elsewhere to fill the hole in their roster.
While no one on the waiver wire will be able to replace Capela thanks to his all-around production in points (17.6 per game), rebounds (12.6 per game) and blocks (1.8 per game), there are a few options who could at least keep your team alive in the short term until the young player is back to 100 percent.
Nene, Houston Rockets
The first option to replace Capela is the person who will likely fill his spot in the Rockets starting lineup.
Nene hasn't played much this season and has gotten more rest than we have seen in a long time, but he has remained productive when on the court. The 36-year-old is averaging 10.7 points and 9.3 rebounds per 36 minutes this season and can provide steals and blocks on the defensive end.
He is in his third year with the Rockets and knows this system well, while his chemistry with James Harden could allow him to get easy baskets whenever he is on the floor.
The problem is Nene likely won't play more than about 20 minutes per game even without Capela on the floor, which limits his upside. This will be the safe play but don't expect much from the veteran.
Marquese Chriss/Isaiah Hartenstein, Houston Rockets
If you are looking for a more high-upside option from the Rockets, these are the two men you should target.
As Michael Gallagher of NBC Sports noted, both have played well alongside Harden in limited opportunities this year:
Marquese Chriss has been out with an ankle injury but returned for the past two games and totaled six points and 10 rebounds in 23 minutes. The 2016 No. 8 overall pick has obvious talent but hasn't been able to put it together in three seasons. Perhaps this opportunity could be what is needed to unlock his talent while finally showing why he was worth a lottery pick.
With the ability to step out and hit three-pointers, this could be an ideal fit for the Rockets.
On the other hand, Isaiah Hartenstein likely has a better chance to replace Capela's production as a 7', 249-pound big man who knows how to use his size. The German has been successful in the G League while averaging 17.3 points and 14.1 rebounds in 11 games for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers.
If he gets another chance, he could produce quality numbers in this high-powered attack.
JaMychal Green, Memphis Grizzlies
Moving away from the Rockets, fantasy owners could get decent production from the fast-rising JaMychal Green.
The Grizzlies forward is coming off his best game of the season Saturday when he totaled 24 points and 11 rebounds in a loss to the Miami Heat. It was his second straight double-double after totaling just two in his first 28 games of the year.
Green has been a reliable player for Memphis over the past three years and remains solid when on the floor, averaging 10.7 points and 6.8 rebounds per game. However, he hasn't had the same amount of playing time this year after injuries caused him to miss much of the beginning of the season.
Rookie Jaren Jackson Jr. is also taking away playing time, although the coaching staff continues to limit his minutes and create teaching moments.
"There's moments where it may look like we're being tough on him," head coach J.B. Bickerstaff said Saturday, per David Cobb of the Memphis Commercial Appeal. "But we have expectations of him being a franchise player, and your franchise player has to hold himself to those standards."
This has led to more playing time for Green, who is averaging 26 minutes in his last four games. If this continues, he could have solid statistics for fantasy owners.
Bam Adebayo, Miami Heat
The Heat aren't going to give up on Hassan Whiteside just yet, but Bam Adebayo showed in a spot start for the sick starter that he can be a high-upside player.
Adebayo finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds in Saturday's game against the Grizzlies and he has now reached double figures in scoring in five of the last eight games. The second-year player continues to earn more minutes in the rotation even with Whiteside healthy, and he has become more aggressive when on the floor.
On a team that has had trouble scoring this season, the 2017 lottery pick could be exactly what is needed to keep the playoff hopes alive.
Adebayo is already producing quality numbers and he could explode by the end of the season.