The NBA gets the new month off to a great start tonight with a jam-packed, 11-game Wednesday night schedule. There is a nice nationally televised double-header featuring the Cavs-Celtics at 8:00 PM ET and the Rockets visiting the Clippers in the late game. Of the 22 teams taking the floor, the Pistons, Nuggets, Wizards and Jazz are finishing out their back-to-back sets while none of the teams have to worry about turning things back around and playing tomorrow. As you build your lineup tonight, there are plenty of stars to target, but there are also some great value plays to take a look at. In this post, I focus on the ultra-cheap options highlighting my top four options in play at under $4K. Let’s take a look,
Ben McLemore – SG/SF – SAC vs. BKN – ($3,900) – In the value-fest of the night, the Nets visit the Kings in the non-nationally-televised 10:30 tipoff. Both teams allow plenty of DKFP to their opponents and there are several cheap players who could have big nights. We’ll start our look at the bargain bin tonight with a pair of Kings. First up, Ben McLemore who has continued to get run on the wing even after the Kings acquired Buddy Hield and Tyreke Evans in the DeMarcus Cousins trade. McLemore has averaged over 26 minutes per game in the Kings’ three contests since the break, producing an average of 14.0 points and 2.7 rebounds. He has scored double-digit points in all three of those games and has 23.5 DKFP and 20.0 DKFP in his last two against the Hornets and Timberwolves.
Tonight, he gets a great matchup against the Nets who have given up more DKFP to opposing SF than any other team in the NBA and the second-most DKFP to opposing SGs. McLemore only played seven minutes in the first game between these teams, but he should be much more involved and effective in his role with the new-look, younger Kings.
Kosta Koufos – PF/C – SAC vs. BKN – ($3,900) – While some of the other big men like Skal Labissiere and Willie Cauley-Stein are more a part of the Kings’ future plans, don’t overlook veteran big man Kosta Koufos who is a favorite of coach Dave Joerger dating back to their time in Memphis. Koufos is a solid fantasy play since he gets points and boards when he’s on the floor. In each of Sacramento’s three games since the All Star break shakeup, Koufos has at least 6 points and 6 boards resulting in 19.5 DKFP, 15.75 DKFP, and 30.25 DKFP. That big game came on Monday against the T-Wolves when he had a 14-point, 11-rebound double-double while playing 25 minutes. If he gets that kind of time again tonight, he has double-double upside in a great matchup against the always-generous front court defense of the Nets.
Gerald Henderson – SG – PHI @ MIA – ($3,900) – Another veteran who is playing big minutes and producing solid numbers is Gerald Henderson, who is starting at SG for the Sixers. Henderson has played at least 25 minutes in each of his last six games dating back to his last meeting with the Heat when he played 30 minutes and had 26.5 DKFP on 14 points and 6 boards, despite shooting just 2-11. He has at least nine shots attempted in each of his last four games and is coming off 26.25 DKFP on Monday against Golden State when he had 16 points, 3 boards, 2 assists and a steal. While both he and Nik Stauskas are solid sub-$4K plays, I’m leaning towards Henderson tonight since he starts and typically gets more shot attempts giving him a higher ceiling.
Stanley Johnson – SG/SF – DET @ NO – ($3,000) – If you need to go all the way to the minimum for your flier tonight, there are a few good $3K options led by Stanley Johnson who is starting to find his way into playing time once again in Stan Van Gundy’s rotation in Detroit. Before last night’s game against the Blazers, SVG said he was going to work Johnson into more playing time at SF. While there was overtime in that contest, Stan the Man ended up logging 28 minutes and produced 20.75 DKFP on 6 points, 7 boards and a couple steals. He’s in a great matchup tonight against the Pelicans who struggle on the defensive end, and if he gets minutes in the 20’s again he should be well on his way to his fourth straight game with over 15 DKFP.
Other cheap options worth considering: Rodney Stuckey – PG – IND @ SA, Thabo Sefolosha – SG/SF – ATL vs. DAL, Joe Johnson – SG/SF – UTA, Nik Stauskas – SG – PHI @ MIA, Terry Rozier – PG – BOS vs. CLE, Nemanja Bjelica – SF/PF – MIN @ UTA, John Henson – C – MIL vs. DEN
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Z.Thompson) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.