I’m still flying high from my stack of OKC/SA game last night which netted some serious money, so let’s put it back in play for tonight’s nine-game dance card. There are some smash matchups, but also blowout risks you’ll have to watch out for. That’s why we’re here at FTA! Make sure to follow us @fanteamadvice and me @jac3600 to stay up with everything going on in chat. Good luck!
FANDUEL TOP POINT GUARD
Ben Simmons, PHI ($9300)
The PHI/ATL game is the first one that has some juicy plays, but also comes with blowout risk (Philly is favored by 12). That said, they also have the highest team total on the slate at a whopping 121.5 points, and Simmons will get to face a Hawks team that has allowed almost 52 FanDuel PPG to opposing guards. Simmons is very much in play at his price tag regardless of news, but would gain an even bigger boost if JJ Redick (20.2% usage rate) were to miss another game.
Other options – Stephen Curry, Damian Lillard (GTD), Kemba Walker
Mid-tier options – Kyle Lowry, Lonzo Ball, Kris Dunn, Jeff Teague, Eric Bledsoe
FANDUEL TOP SHOOTING GUARD
James Harden, HOU ($12,600)
I was going to be edgy and call Donovan Mitchell the better per dollar value so I didn’t have to write about Harden for once, but there is absolutely NO WAY you fade Harden in cash this evening. I know the first argument is going to be the blowout risk (which is a legit concern with HOU favored by 13 points, and I’m sure the Rockets would love to get him some rest). That said, Harden is averaging an obscene 40.1 PPG, 9.6 APG, and 7.7 RPG over the last ten games while posting almost a 47% usage rate and 53% assist rate in that span. Throw in a matchup with the Cavs who have been wire-to-wire ranked dead last in defensive efficiency against PGs, and Harden could go for 70 even if he sits the whole fourth quarter. Again, DO NOT FADE in cash.
Other options – Bradley Beal, Donovan Mitchell, Jimmy Butler
DRAFTKINGS TOP/MID GUARDS
Harden ($12,500) is an even better value on DK where you have bonuses and less of a demerit for turnovers. Take the “do not fade” statement from the FD blurb and multiply it by ten for DK. This is also the section I want to bring up Donovan Mitchell ($7900). Ricky Rubio, Dante Exum, and Raul Neto are ALL out for the Jazz, which means we should see 40 minutes from Mitchell, and most of those coming from the PG position. With just Rubio out last year, Mitchell’s assist rate shot up to almost 25%, and now he gets the Lakers who rank third in pace and 26th against opposing SGs. He’s a lock for him in cash. Beal ($8600) continues to be a much more friendly price play on DK, and is my direct pivot off Mitchell against a Bucks team that allows the most 3PA in the league. Ben Simmons ($8900) is also a much better play on DK where the double and triple-double bonuses come into play.
I like Eric Bledsoe a lot more on DK ($6100) than I do on FD ($6700), but he’s viable there too. Bledsoe is always prone to ceding massive usage to Giannis, but his price tag is a bit too cheap for someone who has a 25.7% assist rate over his last ten games. The Bucks have the second highest total on the slate and face a Washington team that ranks eighth in pace and 28th against opposing PGs. There is also much less blowout risk in this game than some of the other top environments. Malcolm Brogdon ($6100/$5700) is kind of the “less upside” play in the same game. He doesn’t have a ton of upside but is fine as a final play in cash. He can rack up defensive stats and Washington ranks 27th against SGs. A cheap punt play I like tonight is Kyle Korver ($3800/$3500). He is often very scoring dependent, but he doesn’t need to do much at his prices and should see minutes into the mid to high 20s tonight for a short-handed Jazz team. He’s also SF eligible on DK.
Other options – CJ McCollum, Trae Young, Jeremy Lin, Kevin Huerter, Josh Hart, Danny Green, Emmanuel Mudiay, Spencer Dinwiddie
NOTE: Giannis Antetokounmpo is NOT EXPECTED TO PLAY TONIGHT. Eric Bledsoe and Khris Middleton jump to the forefront of the top values, and there are cheap forwards we’ll discuss in the rest of this article.
FANDUEL TOP SMALL FORWARD
Kawhi Leonard, TOR ($9600)
With Giannis now likely out (pfffff), Kawhi is the top SF, but I wouldn’t spend your cash funds here (GPP go nuts). Kawhi and the Raptors will get to take on a Nets squad that has been surprisingly competitive but rank 19th in overall team defense and 24th against opposing SFs. Jared Dudley is out for this one which leaves a lot of size off the wing to defend Kawhi, and his usage rate is sitting at a robust 30% since coming to Toronto.
Other options – Kevin Durant
Mid-tier options – Brandon Ingram
FANDUEL TOP POWER FORWARD
Damontas Sabonis, IND ($7700)
It’s not an Anthony Davis night so we can discuss someone else at the top for once. For me it’s Sabonis, who should be a smash play in all formats. Myles Turner is ruled out once again, and Sabonis should get another start. Over his last four games, Sabonis has averaged a mere 18.5 PPG, 9.8 RPG, and 4.5 APG while clearing 27 minutes in all four games (and 30 in three of them). The Knicks are dead last in defensive efficiency against PFs and are 24th in rebounding rate.
Other options – John Collins
Mid-tier options – Draymond Green, Kyle Kuzma, Serge Ibaka, Pascal Siakam
DRAFTKINGS TOP/MID FORWARDS
Ben Simmons is a forward on DK where he can be used in all formats, especially if Redick sits again. Sabonis is somewhat fairly priced on DK at $7500 but the matchup is so good that he can be used in any format there as well. Khris Middleton ($6900) is G and F eligible on DK and rates as a much better value there than on FD. Middleton averages 1.26 DK PPM in Giannis’ absence and is the next best Bucks value play after Bledsoe. He’s viable in any format against Washington who is 27th in overall team defense. Jimmy Butler ($7600) is also a better price on DK than on FD.
Utah is a fantastic place to find value tonight at the F position, starting with Joe Ingles ($6000/$5700). With essentially no backup PG available for the Jazz, Ingles will assume that role and will play some backup PG minutes. 36 minutes seems like a given, and he’s way too cheap for that role, especially with the pace boost coming. Royce O’Neale ($3500/$3300) is a lousy per-minute guy (0.66 FPPM) but he should see 30 minutes and could even start, and he’s min priced around the industry. Jae Crowder ($4800/$4400) falls into this category as well, as does Derrick Favors ($6000/$5200). Favors is a bit pricey on FD, but he’s a solid value on DK where he averages over a fantasy point per minute. The Lakers are 18th in overall team defense and 17th in rebounding rate. If we get off the Jazz, Otto Porter ($6100/$5800) is easily the next best value, and you could argue he’s even better than all the Utah players. Porter is still coming off the bench but he saw 33 minutes last game and he actually sees a bigger usage boost than even Bradley Beal (8% higher than when Wall is on the court). Porter’s 3-ball matches well with the matchup against Milwaukee, and the absence of Giannis does wonders for the matchup (and also keeping the game close). Serge Ibaka ($7000/$6200) is a MUCH better value on DK in a matchup that we love to attack (centers vs Nets).
Other options – Trevor Ariza, Lauri Markkanen, Ersan Ilyasova, Kyle O’Quinn, Jeff Green, Evan Turner, Gerald Green, Maxi Kleber, Marvin Williams
FANDUEL TOP CENTER
Rudy Gobert, UTA ($8400)
Not writing about Embiid against the Hawks physically hurts, but I do think Gobert is the better per-dollar play tonight, especially since you need to save funds for Harden. The Lakers rank 23rd against centers while allowing the second most blocks per 48 minutes to them. Gobert sees his usage rate go from 16% to almost 19% with Rubio off the court, and comes with a ridiculously high floor in this matchup.
Other options – Joel Embiid, Karl-Anthony Towns, Clint Capela, Jusuf Nurkic (if Lillard out)
Mid-tier options – DeAndre Jordan
DRAFTKINGS TOP/MID C’s
Clint Capela gets lost in the shuffle on FD but he’s arguably the best value on DK at $7600. This is a silly price for someone who has a 22% rebounding rate this season and has five 20-rebound games over his last eight contests. Cleveland ranks eighth against centers but a lot of that has to do with Larry Nance (who is out), and the Cavs are also 20th in rebounding rate. Gobert is an even better value on DK at $8000, and a double-double is a virtual lock here. Towns ($10,200) and Embiid ($11,000) are typically better values on DK and tonight is no different. Both are cash viable, but I prefer Towns at a steep discount.
Kyle O’Quinn ($4400/$3700) is the first one people will ask about tonight, especially since it’s a “revenge game” which our subs love to tout. You can’t expect more than 20 minutes here (and even that’s pushing it) but O’Quinn has averaged over 1.4 FPPM since the beginning of last year and the Knicks are 24th against centers and 24th in rebounding rate. Tristan Thompson ($6200/$5800) has a difficult matchup with Houston, but Larry Nance’s absence opens up tons of rates, and TT flourished in this scenario this year already.
Other options – Kevon Looney, JaVale McGee, Brook Lopez, Thon Maker, Ante ZizicFantasy Basketball