Tonight’s six-game NBA slate provides a whopping seven players $10k and above, which is sure to give us a variety of lineup construction options. Two stick out as ones to watch, though, and they are playing in the same contest.
The game everyone is going to be watching is Warriors-Pacers, a matchup that features the top-two MVP candidates in Stephen Curry and Paul George. Both make for awesome options any night, but if they get into a duel with the spotlight shining bright, you are definitely going to want one of them in your lineup.
But, wait! There are other good plays tonight too, and they are just seconds away. First, today’s news and notes:
- Kevin Love (illness) is a game-time decision, but expected to play. Tristan Thompson would be a great value if Love misses the game.
- Monta Ellis (back) is expected to play against the Warriors. If he were to sit or be limited, I would be even higher on Rodney Stuckey.
- Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (ankle) had surgery and is out indefinitely. Bojan Bogdanovic is the starter in name, and an uninspiring punt play, but he is there if you need him.
- Danilo Gallinari (knee) is a game-time decision against the Magic. Will Barton would be a very good play if Gallinari sits.
BUILDING BLOCKS – Studs and Must-Have Values to Build Your Core
Thaddeus Young, PF, BKN ($7,100): With so many high-priced studs, finding value in the middle tier of players is going to be crucial for cash games. Young has been quite consistent so far this season, missing the 30 DraftKings point mark only once in his last 10 games. A matchup with Houston is only good for his prospects.
Nikola Vucevic, C, ORL ($7,000): Center is a top-heavy position tonight, so I started my lineup construction with picking the guy I think has the best combination of upside, value and base production. Vucevic is now getting consistent minutes, even as a member of “Scott Skiles’ fantasy basketball torture chamber”, and a matchup with Denver is always a plus.
Three more studs to consider: Stephen Curry, PG, GS ($10,700) — Russell Westbrook, PG, OKC ($10,400) — James Harden, SG, HOU ($10,600)
BARGAINS – Complementary Players & Punt Plays
Patrick Beverley, PG, HOU ($4,700): One of my go-to value plays, Beverley has seen his price rise to an almost uncomfortable level as of late. Still, on this short slate it’s tough to deviate from him, so I will deploy him yet again against Brooklyn.
Elfrid Payton, PG, ORL ($6,400): When Payton scores well, he is worthy of a price about $2000 more than what he currently sits at. When he doesn’t, it’s a frustrating experience, but oftentimes he can still salvage a usable performance. He isn’t always cash-worthy, but with few other options, I don’t mind using him against the Nuggets tonight.
Rodney Stuckey, SG, IND ($4,700): Stuckey has been getting minutes and producing at a high level in his last few games. I would expect him to see a prominent role as the Pacers try to knock off the undefeated Warriors at home.
Omri Casspi, SF, SAC ($5,000): Casspi is seeing an increased role with Willie Cauley-Stein sidelined, and is usable even if he comes off the bench. The Jazz play a little faster with Rudy Gobert out, so there is more upside than you would think here.
Trevor Ariza, SF, HOU ($5,500): As long as Ariza is priced in this range he is a good cash play. He is a near-lock to play 30+ minutes a night and has upside to drop 30-40 DraftKings points any time out.
Andrew Nicholson, PF, ORL ($4,000): If you need to punt power forward, I would recommend Nicholson over Trevor Booker. Both see limited minutes, but I believe more in Nicholson’s matchup than Booker’s.
Clint Capela, C, HOU ($5,500): I strongly recommend you take one of the $7k centers, but if you don’t want to, Capela is probably the next best option. Dwight Howard may be limited tonight, so Capela could see an increased role.
LOTTERY TICKETS – Five Tournament Plays
Rajon Rondo, PG, SAC ($8,500): Russell Westbrook in cash, Rajon Rondo in tournaments. It is simply one of the rules of life. Well, most of the time anyways, and definitely tonight.
Alec Burks, SG, UTA ($5,400): Burks’ dependency on scoring makes him scary, but the matchup with the Kings provides massive upside.
Paul George, SF, IND ($10,200): With so many high-priced studs, George may go somewhat unnoticed. I love him in tournaments as a pivot from Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and James Harden — all guy I would figure are going to be higher owned.
Kenneth Faried, PF, DEN ($5,800): Faried’s minutes are in constant flux, but there is huge upside in a matchup against the Magic.
Dwight Howard, C, HOU ($7,000): If Howard plays a full complement of minutes, he is going to be a good value against the Nets. It will be tough to know, and the lean is that he will be limited on the first night of a back-to-back, and that makes him a tournament play.
BUYER’S REMORSE – Reasons for Skepticism
Jarrett Jack, PG, BKN ($6,200): When you are losing minutes to Shane Larkin, I no longer trust you. This is a rule.
Victor Oladipo, SG, ORL ($6,600): When is his minute fluctuation going to hinder his fantasy value? I refuse to believe that it won’t, and at his price, I can’t risk it tonight.