The NBA is back in full-swing after taking a slow day — also known as Stephen Curry appreciation day, to some – yesterday with a three-game slate.
11 games are on the docket for tonight, including my favorite one of the night: Memphis at Houston. The game itself should be exciting to watch with both teams clawing for position in the Western Conference, but there is plenty of fantasy value on both sides; including James Harden and a pair of building blocks for tonight’s contests.
There are plenty of other great plays and studs to build your lineups around, and I think I have found some that can help you win some cash tonight if you need a few picks to round out your lineups. First, here are today’s news and notes:
- Cody Zeller (ankle) is still battling lingering injuries and is questionable tonight. Frank Kaminsky and Spencer Haws would benefit from him sitting.
- Omer Asik (illness) is a game-time decision against the Spurs. Ryan Anderson will probably benefit the most if Asik isn’t able to go.
- Jason Terry could start over Ty Lawson for the Rockets, but I am not interested in Terry for DFS. If anything, it only helps out Mike Conley with Patrick Beverley (ankle) still sidelined.
- Derrick Rose (ankle) is out against the Warriors tonight, as is Aaron Brooks (hamstring). I wouldn’t touch any of the replacements in this situation, but Jimmy Butler should see his usage skyrocket.
- Kobe Bryant (back) will play tonight against the Raptors. This does more harm to the Lakers than good, so I would stay off of them in this spot.
Make sure to check the news up until tip:
BUILDING BLOCKS – Studs and Must-Have Values to Build Your Core Lineup
Kemba Walker, PG, CHA ($6,700): Walker has an excellent matchup with a weak 76ers frontcourt. With his floor being so high due to matchup, and his price still hovering in the mid-tier range, I love him as a cash play tonight.
Jeff Green, SF, MEM ($3,900): Green is not typically a consistent player, so there is a risk here, but his recent production suggests that he will be a value pick tonight. The Rockets are atrocious defensively, and Green has been getting around 30 minutes per game over his last three contests. I wouldn’t expect that to change in what projects to be an offensive matchup.
Marc Gasol, C, MEM ($7,100): Gasol’s price is still quite low, and his production warrants consideration as a cash game play. He has hit 29 DraftKings points in eight of his last nine games, showing exactly what kind of consistent floor he has. I am not scared of a showdown with Dwight Howard here.
More studs to consider: Russell Westbrook, PG, OKC ($12,300) – Eric Bledsoe, SG, PHX ($8,400) – Derrick Favors ($7,600)
BARGAINS – Complementary Players and Punt Plays
Mike Conley, PG, MEM ($6,200): All Memphis everything! Honestly, you could probably talk me into any Grizzly tonight, but I like Conley, who will matchup with Ty Lawson and/or Jason Terry.
Jeremy Lin, PG, CHA ($4,200): Don’t want to pay for Kemba Walker? Try Charlotte Point Guard-lite! Lin represents a $2,500 discount from Walker, but should still play 20-25 minutes against a bad 76ers backcourt.
Avery Bradley, SG, BOS ($4,700): Bradley has been phenomenal when healthy this year, and now gets to take on a bad Nets backcourt. If he continues to come off the bench, you have to like the offensive potential here with that second unit.
Will Barton, SG, DEN ($5,300): Barton has been awesome, and his price is still near the lower-end of the spectrum. He is probably worth at least $1,000 more as long as he is getting big minutes, and his ability to contribute in every category makes him a fantastic play.
Joe Johnson, SF, BKN ($5,400): Joe Johnson isn’t all that exciting anymore, but he still contributes across the board for fantasy. His low price and heavy workload (38 minutes per game over the last five games) make him an appealing option in addition to his contributions.
Ersan Ilyasova, PF, DET ($4,000): The Timberwolves have not been great at defending power forwards, and Ilyasova has seen an uptick in production over his past few games. At $4,000 you don’t need the world from him, making the Pistons’ stretch-four a solid punt play.
Serge Ibaka, PF, OKC ($7,000): Ibaka should remain an intriguing option with Kevin Durant out, and I expect him to bounce back from a less-than-stellar performance during his last game.
Jonas Valanciunas, C, TOR ($5,700): This is a good price for Valanciunas regardless of matchup, but a tilt with the Lakers is enough for him to be considered a great value.
LOTTERY TICKETS – 5 Tournaments Options
Tony Parker, PG, SA ($4,600): I don’t usually like to play Parker, but a matchup with the Pelicans warrants consideration. He has played well as of late, putting up 25 DraftKings points per game over his last five.
Andrew Wiggins, SG, MIN ($6,800): The Pistons struggle at containing shooting guards, and Wiggins has been hot recently with back-to-back games of 35 DraftKings points. He is fairly dependent scoring, so he is a tournament-only consideration.
Carmelo Anthony, SF, NY ($8,500): Paying up for Anthony would be a bit of a contrarian move tonight, but a fast-paced matchup with the Thunder has serious scoring potential.
Nerlens Noel, PF, PHI ($6,500): Noel has been up-and-down lately, and Brett Brown revealed that the forward has been dealing with tendinitis in his knee. He will play through it, but his ownership should drop, and a matchup against the Hornets is rather juicy for power forwards.
Al Jefferson, C, CHA ($6,000): Jefferson could match up with Noel, but I still like the big guy from Charlotte as a tournament play. We are looking for 6x value for GPPs, and 36 DraftKings points seem like a real possibility against the 76ers.
BUYER’S REMORSE – Reasons for Skepticism
Chris Paul, PG, LAC ($8,600): He is playing a back-to-back after missing a ton of time with a groin issue. I love the price, but I would rather pay $200 more for Damian Lillard given the spot.
Andre Drummond, C, DET ($9,900): Drummond is a cyborg, I am convinced. It’s just that I am equally convinced that Karl-Anthony Towns is sent from the future to destroy us all. I don’t love Drummond’s matchup for his price.