These fantasy basketball picks are the key to navigating the snow and crushing the competition!
Let me start things off by reminding you that the Blazers/Nets and Kings/Knicks games have been POSTPONED due to inclement weather in the Northeast. DO NOT play anyone from these games.
Let’s recap things from last night’s action starting with the unstoppable James Harden (57.25) who decimated the Lakers en route to yet another monster stat line. D.J. Augustin (54) was a popular value play that ended up with one of the highest outputs of any player. Blake Griffin (41) was solid despite falling short of value, and Matt Barnes (14.25) looked to have back issues while playing just 26 minutes. Eric Bledsoe (32) was electric through 3 quarters before a silent 4th, and Eric Gordon (21.75) was a disappointment. Nikola Vucevic (34.25) was impressive on offense, but managed just 7 rebounds. Patrick Patterson (15) had his potential value taken away by Amir Johnson suiting up, while Brandon Bass (21.50) was adequate in a tough matchup. Tonight’s slate is down to just five games, so let’s dive into the top plays.
These plays are intended to help you gain a solid return on salary (at least 2.5X, with the ideal level being 3x or higher) with each player you roster. Sometimes I will highlight a minimum salary player, and the intent is to maximize the number of roster spots where you have potential to hit 3X salary. Keep in mind that a minimum-priced player on DraftDay is even more valuable than a minimum-salary player elsewhere, due to the large gap in pricing with a $100,000 cap. Another key to remember is that in DFS, late injury news can be HUGE when deciding your final rosters. Just because someone was a great play in the morning doesn’t necessarily mean that better options won’t arise throughout the day. Monitor Twitter closely before locking in your lineups.
Today’s Top Plays
Tyreke Evans ($13,700) vs Philadelphia – This game has a high spread (-14) and low total (189), but the good thing is that the Pelicans are pretty much a 3-man show. Evans has been running the point with Jrue Holiday out, and has bested 28 FP in 9 of his last 10 games. Even if this one gets out of hand, you can bank on the fact that Evans had his fingerprints all over it.
Dante Exum ($7,900) vs Boston – Exum has 24.25 and 25.50 FP in his last two games since taking over the starting role for Trey Burke, and if he draws the start once again then he is in play at this discounted price. The Jazz are favored by 7.5 in this one, which is now the closest spread on the night with the cancellations. If he starts again, he is the top value at PG.
Mo Williams ($10,700) at Oklahoma City – Despite the 15 point spread, this game has the second highest total of the night at 206, and I’m looking to get some cheap exposure. Russell Westbrook is a phenomenal athlete, but is far from a lockdown defender, which is why the Thunder allow the 4th-most FP to opposing PG. If this one stays close, Williams has huge upside in a fast-paced game (Both teams rank in the top 10 in pace).
Evan Turner ($9,600) at Utah - Turner has never been an efficient shooter, but his peripheral stats have masked his shooting woes, especially in DFS. Avery Bradley had his thumb tightly wrapped last game after jamming it, and although he is expected to play, he could be limited, opening the door for Turner. His price is still far too low for a player with legitimate 40 FP upside most nights.
Blake Griffin ($17,100) vs Denver - Griffin has absolutely destroyed the Nuggets over the last two seasons and this is one of my favorite spots to target him in. In 5 games over that span, Blake has averaged 28.4 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists per contest, and should have no trouble dominating a weak frontcourt again tonight. He is one of the top plays at any position tonight.
Wilson Chandler ($9,850) at Los Angeles Clippers - If you’re going to roster multiple studs, you need value plays with upside. Chandler provides the best of both worlds. He has 30.75 and 37.50 FP in his last two games, and now draws a soft matchup against a banged-up Matt Barnes in a game with the highest total on the night at 214.5.
Kevin Durant ($19,200) vs Minnesota - If there is one other stud I’ll be paying for tonight, it is Durant. Minnesota is not only dead last in defensive efficiency this season, but they allow the most points to opposing SF of any team in the NBA. The reigning MVP is in line for a huge night tonight, as every game from here on out is a must-win for the 22-22 Thunder. Fire up Durant as an elite option tonight.
Thaddeus Young ($12,200) at Oklahoma City - A player that I love to roster who always goes under-owned is Young. Despite a dud against Anthony Davis and the Pelicans (I’ll give him a pass against the best PF in the game), he has 26 or more FP in 10 of 11 contests, including 26/6/7 against a tough Hawks team last night. The matchup against Serge Ibaka is less than ideal, but his confidence is riding high following a big game against Paul Millsap.
Brandon Bass ($8,650) at Utah - Bass has been the most popular value play on the board for a few nights now, and he will continue to be that once again tonight. Utilizing DraftDay’s multi-position eligibility will help me roster him at C tonight. The Jazz have allowed some big games down low, and I anticipate that the defensive key will be on Jared Sullinger, opening the door for more Bass tonight. He’ll find his way into the majority of my lineups once again at this price.
You can find me on Twitter @BigItaly42 and I’d love to help you out with any questions you have about determining salary, finding value, or any lineup construction tips!