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There are 10 games tonight in the NBA. When drafting your lineup, look for players who will play big minutes. The more time a player is on the court, the more opportunities he’ll have to score fantasy points. Also, check for the positional matchups for your players. Some teams are better at defending certain positions, which can make it more difficult for your players to put up fantasy points. With that in mind, check out tonight’s Cheat Sheet for a look at the best and worst matchups on tonight’s NBA slate!
For questions or comments hit me up on Twitter: @julianedlow.
Defense vs. Position
Point Guard Matchups
BEST – Goran Dragic ($7,300) vs. Atlanta Hawks –The Hawks are the second worst team in the NBA at defending PGs and have been getting especially dominated by the position lately — 71.5 DKFPs allowed over the last five games. Meanwhile, Dragic has topped 41 DKFPs in four of his last five games.
WORST – Damian Lillard ($8,700) vs. Milwaukee Bucks – The obvious size that Milwaukee boasts in the backcourt makes it pretty easy to identify why they’re so good at limiting PG production. Lillard’s gotten out of his slump lately, but this matchup with the NBA’s fourth-ranked team against PGs (and top-ranked over its last five games), isn’t going to make it easy for him.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – Lou Williams ($6,100) vs. Houston Rockets – Well, I whiffed on Lou-Will as a bust on Monday as he dropped 58.5 DKFPs in a brutal matchup with Utah. That makes 49+ DKFPs in back-to-back games, and now Williams faces a Houston team that ranks 29th in the league against SGs.
WORST – Klay Thompson ($7,000) vs. Los Angeles Clippers – Scoring 60 actual points in 29 minutes will grab you some headlines. But it also will bump your salary $400 entering a matchup with the league’s fourth-ranked team against SGs. Keep in mind Klay only scored 68 DKFPs in a game in which he scored 60 points. It will be difficult for him to produce another outburst like that tonight.
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – Danilo Gallinari ($5,700) vs. Brooklyn Nets – The Nets are just a shade below PHI and LAL at the bottom of the league against SFs, but over the last five games it’s not even close — the Nets have allowed 63 DKFPs per game to SFs. Gallinari is just getting his groove back too, posting a 40-DKFP game on Monday night.
WORST – Jae Crowder ($5,600) vs. Orlando Magic — Crowder has been slumping of late, particularly on Boston’s recent road trip. The trip takes the C’s to Orlando tonight, where the Magic have been a top-10 team against SFs all season, but have actually been the best in the NBA over the last five games. However, keep in mind that with Isaiah Thomas out tonight, this could open up some production for Crowder.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – Jabari Parker ($6,500) vs. Portland Trailblazers – The Blazers continue to be walked all over by opposing PFs, and although Parker is a little undersized, he makes up for it with scoring ability. Portland will have its hands full with both he and Giannis.
WORST – Paul Millsap ($7,100) vs. Miami Heat – Millsap is a little banged up with a hip injury, although he returned to have a good game against OKC. Tonight he’ll face the tall task of the NBA’s third-ranked defense against his position.
BEST – Tristan Thompson ($4,800) vs. New York Knicks — Despite winning some games lately, the Knicks have basically worked their way into a tie with the Pacers and Sixers as the league’s most attractive matchup for centers. They’ve done so by allowing 64.3 DKFPs to the position over the last five games. I think Thompson makes for a nice value play in such a great matchup.
WORST – Hassan Whiteside ($9,200) vs. Atlanta Hawks- Atlanta is the best team against centers on the slate tonight. Although Whiteside has put up big numbers in his last couple of games, he’s also been extremely matchup sensitive this season, so Howard could give him a tough time.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
LeBron James ($9,900) – Without Russ/AD on the slate and so many mid-priced plays in a great matchup, I’m a fan of building a team from the middle. That said, LeBron does have a nice matchup with the Knicks, and it happens to be at MSG where he enjoys putting on a show.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Tyson Chandler ($4,400) – Chandler always seems underpriced when he’s entering his best matchups. The Pacers have been horrible against centers, and with Chandler so cheap I will give him a very long look.
Next Man Up
Terry Rozier ($3,000) – Pretty big news on the next man up front tonight as Isaiah Thomas flew home from Orlando this morning and will not play with a groin injury. This will open up a ton of minutes/opportunities for Rozier (along with Marcus Smart) who will cost you the dead minimum in salary.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jedlow) 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.