FanDuel and DraftKings DFS NBA Picks | 1/23/19

James Harden driving to the hoop for a layup in Rockets Red

Get set for a huge ten-game Wednesday slate tonight, complete with injury replacements, big time Western Conference games, and another night of Harden. I will be working hard with the boys in chat all day and night getting you ready for the action, and make sure to follow us at @FanTeamAdvice and me @jac3600.

FANDUEL TOP POINT GUARD

Ben Simmons, PHI ($9900)

Simmons is already a nice play with the rates he’s been showing lately (24% UR, just under 40% AR last ten games), and he would move to an incredible high-end value if Jimmy Butler were to sit again. The seventh-ranked Sixers are getting a big pace downgrade against the Spurs (25th in pace factor), but San Antonio also ranks 22nd against opposing PGs and Simmons’ size and athleticism presents a uniquely tough matchup. It’s a Harden night, so Simmons isn’t a must by any means, but he’s a darn good option.

Other options – Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, Mike Conley

Mid-tier options – Kyle Lowry, Kris Dunn, Trae Young

FANDUEL TOP SHOOTING GUARD

James Harden, HOU ($13,500)

Harden’s price peaked at $14,300 during this run, and I can’t imagine fading him tonight after his price has dropped $800. The Knicks have fallen all the way to last in overall defensive efficiency and also allow the most 3PA and the highest 3PT% in the league. Houston has the highest implied total right now at 117.3 points and are only seven-point road favorites. Fade at your own peril.

Other options – Jrue Holiday, Donovan Mitchell

Mid-tier options – DeMar DeRozan, Victor Oladipo, Zack LaVine

DRAFTKINGS TOP/MID GUARDS

Harden’s price did NOT adjust on DK from last game, but $13,400 is still far too cheap, especially with all the bonuses he can accumulate. Please don’t fade in cash, and I’d take an overweight approach in GPP too. Simmons ($8700) is a FAR better value on DK, and he can strongly be considered in cash as the second big piece alongside Harden. Jrue Holiday ($8600) saw some gaudy rates with Anthony Davis the last time this year, and his price on DK doesn’t quite account for that. He also has a good matchup as Detroit ranks 27th against PGs, a role Jrue splits with Elfrid Payton. Just keep in mind Payton was also out during Jrue’s first stint of high totals. Kris Dunn ($6300) is someone I will be heavily targeting on DK, and even on FD where his price is a little more appropriate. He finally seems to be snapping out of his slump, and he gets to face the Hawks who rank first in pace and have allowed by far the most FPPG to opposing PGs

VALUE GUARDS

Jeremy Lin ($4600/$4200) is a bit volatile for cash since his minutes could be 28-29 or they could be 18-19. However, the Bulls rank 28th against opposing PGs and have also allowed the second most bench points in the league. Lin is averaging 1.02 FPPM this season and could have GPP-winning upside in that time. I also think he’s cash viable on FD where his score can be dropped if the minutes aren’t there. Reggie Jackson ($5000/$4800) has been a monster disappointment without Drummond on the court (only a 9% usage rate!). However, last year he saw his usage rate go to 26% with Drummond off the court (of course, part of that was without Blake Griffin) so the hope is there. Drummond isn’t actually officially ruled out yet, so keep an eye on this, but Jackson is getting a solid pace boost (Pelicans are sixth) and a great matchup (NO 26th against PGs). The aforementioned Elfrid Payton ($5700/$6100) kind of falls into the same boat as Jackson. The rates SHOULD be there without one of the teams’ stars on the court, but it just hasn’t been. He’s fine on FD as Detroit ranks 27th against PGs, but the price is just too high on DK.

Other options – Emmanuel Mudiay, Spencer Dinwiddie, DJ Augustin, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Dwyane Wade, Jordan Clarkson, Alec Burks, Austin Rivers

FANDUEL TOP SMALL FORWARD

NONE

There is no one worth spending on at this position on FD. Kawhi Leonard ($10,300) “resting” for three straight games is very strange, and Indiana ranks second in defensive efficiency. Tobias Harris ($8000) has moved to a SF on FanDuel but he’s also appropriately priced, and was at his best when Lou Williams was out (and he no longer is). Save your money.

Mid-tier options – Nikola Mirotic, Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow

FANDUEL TOP POWER FORWARD

Julius Randle, NO ($8900)

I’m going to get yelled at in chat for not picking Griffin here, but the $900 discount for Randle is big, plus he’s no longer a center on FD where he lost a lot of his value. With Anthony Davis out, Randle has a 27% UR, 17% RR, and 18% AR while averaging over 42 FanDuel PPG. It remains to be seen how they guard him (Griffin as the primary defender would be a risk), but Randle is a solid price tag for his rate boosts.

Other options – Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge, John Collins

Mid-tier options – Montrezl Harrell, Lauri Markkanen, Serge Ibaka, Pascal Siakam, Jayson Tatum

DRAFTKINGS TOP/MID FORWARDS

The aforementioned Randle ($8400) and Griffin ($9700) are both better values on DK, and should be strongly considered in cash there. I must mention for all the Griffin truthers – he has a 40% UR without Drummond this year, and New Orleans is a lot smaller in the paint with Anthony Davis out. If Drummond remains out, Griff is certainly cash viable. Montrezl Harrell’s price of $6700 is not reflected for his newly-found starting role. The Clippers are finally giving him 29-31 MPG and he doesn’t have to share the second unit with usage hog Lou Williams anymore. He’s the 1A to Tobias Harris in the starting lineup, and Miami ranks 27th against opposing PFs. Keep DeMar DeRozan ($7600) in mind as well. The matchup is poor (PHI 5th against SFs), but the pace is up and his price is down.

VALUE FORWARDS

If Kawhi Leonard remains in hibernation, Pascal Siakam ($6700/$6200) and Serge Ibaka ($6700/$5900) would immediately jump to the forefront of the value plays again. Both get big time rate boosts without Kawhi, and they can transcend even the tough matchup with Indiana. Both players are much better values on DK. Taurean Prince ($4400/$4900) is someone to keep an eye on, as he started last game for the injured Kevin Huerter. Prince only played 25 minutes last game as the starter, but he supposedly “doesn’t have a minutes restriction”, and Chicago ranks 18th in wing defense. Prince is a meh play on DK, but an important part of FanDuel builds where we want to save as much as possible at SF. Kenneth Faried ($5000/$4400) is another value I will be heavily targeting tonight (gulp). He played 23 minutes against the Sixers and is supposedly in line for a “significant role” with Houston. The Knicks rank dead last in defensive efficiency against PFs and are 25th in rebounding rate. Bobby Portis ($5500/$5800) is a similar play with higher upside. His minutes are capped coming off the bench, but Atlanta ranks first in pace, second in TO rate, 29th against PFs, and 16th in rebounding rate. He’s a better play on FD.

Other options – Joe Ingles, JJ Redick, Bojan Bogdanovic, Cedi Osman, Wilson Chandler, Chandler Hutchinson, Paul Millsap, Thaddeus Young, James Johnson

FANDUEL TOP CENTER

Joel Embiid ($10,800)

I love Embiid, but he’s probably not fitting in my cash lineups tonight. He’s a very reasonable GPP pivot off Harden at almost a $3000 discount, even in a tough matchup against the Spurs (fourth against centers). Embiid is averaging 1.56 FPPM with a 30% true usage rate, and he would gain even more upside if Jimmy Butler were to sit again.

Other options – Nikola Jokic, Nikola Vucevic

Mid-tier options – Marc Gasol, Myles Turner, Hassan Whiteside

DRAFTKINGS TOP/MID C’s

Embiid ($10,500) is a better value on DK where he’s almost a lock for a double-double. The Spurs defend the paint well, but they’re average (15th) in rebounding rate. Vucevic ($9300) is also very intriguing against the Nets, especially if Aaron Gordon is out. The Nets have become a fun team to watch, but they also allow 13% more scoring and 15% more rebounding to the center position. Vuc is fresh off a 16-17-6 game against them in 32 minutes, and that was with Gordon in. As long as Marc Gasol ($7400) is a full go, he’s a solid mid-tier options against Charlotte who ranks 24th against centers and 21st in rebounding rate.

VALUE CENTERS

As long as Drummond remains out, Zaza Pachulia is the lock of the night at $4200/$4200. He busted last game, but he’s just too cheap for his opportunity, and Detroit is getting a HUGE pace boost against New Orleans. The Pelicans are also 20th against centers and won’t have Anthony Davis creating foul havoc. Hassan Whiteside ($6800/$6000) is someone that will be making plenty of appearances in my GPPs tonight, especially on DK at only 6k. I wish is could call him a cash play, but he hasn’t played 30 minutes since 12/26 against the Raptors, so that’s a no-go. It bears mentioning, however, that the Clippers have fallen all the way to dead last in defensive efficiency against centers and are also 19th in rebounding rate. They have no one to body up on Whiteside, and he could surpass 40 FPS even if he only gets 25 minutes. Ante Zizic ($5400/$6000) has a very difficult matchup against Boston, but he’s averaged 32 MPG without Tristan Thompson. He’s a fine value on FD, but give me Whiteside for the same price on DK. Finally, look for Aron Baynes ($3700/$3500) as a punt play. Al Horford is ruled out for rest tonight, and Baynes would get to match up with the Cavs who are 28th in overall team defense and 22nd in rebounding rate. Boston is favored by 17 points so I have NO idea how they’ll play the blowout, but Baynes could hit value even in 20 minutes.

Other options – Jarrett Allen, Dewayne Dedmon, Jahlil Okafor, Alex Len, Mo Bamba

Fantasy Basketball

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