Lou Williams averaged 14.1 points, 3.6 assists, 2.1 rebounds and 1.1 steals per game in his first season with the Atlanta Hawks last year, but his season was cut short after just 39 games (nine starts) due after he suffered a torn ACL in his right knee. He has yet to play this season, but has recently been cleared for full contact practice and could return soon. Even without a firm return date right now, can fantasy basketball owners consider adding Williams?
In his last fully healthy season, 2011-2012 with the Philadelphia 76ers, Williams averaged a career-best 14.9 points per game, along with 3.5 assists and 2.4 rebounds per contest, despite not starting any of the 64 games he played during the lockout-shortened season. He has predominantly come off the bench throughout his career, starting just 47 of 494 career games, and once he returns to action for the Hawks this season he should re-take his role as sixth man.
Williams made 1.8 three-pointers per game and a set a career-high by making 36.7 percent of his three-point attempts last season, but without outstanding career averages in other categories (3.0 assists, 2.0 rebounds and 0.8 steals per game) his fantasy value rests almost completely on his ability to score.
Williams is likely to see limited playing time once he starts suiting up for games, but as long as he avoids setbacks he could become a fantasy contributor in time to help owners late in the season. For now Williams is only worth adding and stashing in very deep leagues, but if definitive word on when he’ll play his first game comes sometime soon he could quickly become a popular waiver wire pickup.
Brad Berreman is a contributing writer at Rant Sports.com. Follow him on Twitter @bradberreman24.