A strong Monday night of NBA games with superstars all over the place, but a few sneaky good values! Let’s get into it.
Russell Westbrook ($10,400) – Westbrook is as steady as any guard in the NBA this season & after a big blowout victory against the Lakers on Saturday, Westbrook should be nice & rested to go up against a rival in the Los Angeles Clippers. As per usual, even at over $10k, Westy is always a good play, especially with Chris Paul not being the same player he used to be. Another thing that will be going for Westy having a good night, OKC will look to push the pace against a Clippers squad that likes to play up-and-down at times & Westbrook handles the ball as much as any point guard in the league, so the DK points should be very strong.
Brandon Knight ($7,300) – I like Knight in this matchup against Utah, especially against Trey Burke. Burke is a solid defender, but Knight is having a true breakout season & if the Suns can play the game at their pace & not fall into the slow down game of the Jazz, Knight could be a big game against the young point guards of the Jazz.
Other options – John Wall ($9,500), Elfrid Payton($6,300), Chris Paul ($8,100), Isaiah Thomas ($7,700)
Derrick Rose ($5,900) – Derrick Rose is showing that he can stay somewhat healthy this season, which for him, is a big time victory in the NBA. He’s played better of late and his price tag hasn’t quite risen to meet the recent increase in production. Toss in a very strong matchup against one of the league’s worst teams and Rose is a nice mid to low tier option on Monday Night.
George Hill ($5,200) – In a matchup against his old team, George Hill has the narratives working in his favor on Monday night. But he also has a pretty strong matchup against a team that will focus most of their attention on shutting down Paul George. That should lead to a slightly higher usage for Hill who can take advantage against Tony Parker and the other San Antonio guards.
Other options – Tony Parker ($5,200), Dennis Schroder ($5,100)
James Harden ($10,800) – Another week, another night of James Harden being a guy to build your team around. He is going to be the top scorer for the Rockets & more importantly, he takes the most shots & gets to the free throw line more than most players in the league. Don’t worry about his 4-13 shooting last game – he will have those nights, but he contributes with the assists, especially because he has so much attention in his face every night, which will leave other shooters open. 50 DK points per night despite his standard 5-6 turnovers? Definitely someone I want in a cash game.
Jimmy Butler ($7,400) – Im going to go with Butler over Eric Bledsoe in tonight’s matchup because I just can’t see Joe Johnson or Wayne Ellington being able to keep up with Butler & the improved pace the Bulls have been playing with this year. Butler had a monster 43 point game against Detroit last Friday night, but that was over 4 overtimes. Butler still fills up the stat sheet consistently & is more of a 35-40 point DK scorer as opposed to the 63 against Detroit. Solid play in both matchups.
Other options – Eric Bledsoe ($8,400), Andrew Wiggins ($7,100)
J.J. Redick ($4,800) – Redick is a good play if you plan on punting on the SG position on Monday night. Redick is going up against an OKC team that is not great defensively, particularly not against the SG position. Redick will get a lot of open shots as usual with Blake Griffin & Chris Paul on the court. Redick is a good tournament play, I wouldn’t cash on him only because shooters are notoriously streaky & if he is off, it will be a rough night for your team.
Other options – Victor Oladipo ($6,100), Monta Ellis ($5,600), Arron Afflalo ($4,900)
Kevin Durant ($10,100) – Typically, I am not the biggest Durant fan, but this is looking to be a high scoring game with great pace & an over/under of 210, the highest on Monday night. Durant is a good play in a cash game, but he has only been scoring about 40 DK points per game over the last 3. He has a high ceiling & a chance of a huge game, but for this, I am going to err on the side of caution & expect another 40-45 DK point night, which will be great for a cash game.
Other options – Kawhi Leonard ($8,500)
Jae Crowder ($5,600) – I really like Crowder in a high-pace, projected high-scoring game against Minnesota. He has shown the ability to be a solid scorer, and he will get many opportunities against a young, inexperienced Minnesota team. Crowder is a stats stuffer & is just good enough with a ceiling of 38 to be a solid, low ownership play in a tournament.
Trevor Ariza ($6,000) – Trevor Ariza has been one of the Rockets’ most consistent players this season, feeding off of James Harden & Dwight Howard. As is so many guys on today’s picks, he is a stats filler & he is one of those types of players that you need in a tournament or a cash game due to his stats filling & the ability to shoot well from 3-point range. Ariza’s game can translate against any team in the entire league because of every team realizing that Harden & Howard are the guys who are going to do the most damage each night. Feel safe in playing Ariza in either format.
Other Options – Al-Farouq Aminu ($5,100), C.J. Miles ($5,700)
DeMarcus Cousins ($10,000) – Even with the distractions around Cousins about possibly being traded or benched, Cousins is showing that he is the most dominant PF/C in the NBA right now. He is the most complete big man in the game, even shooting from 3-point range from time-to-time – which shows with 4 straight games over 45 DK points. This is a no-brainer in terms of playing – SAC & WSH have a high point total going in & neither team is great on defense. A big night ahead for Cousins in any format.
Blake Griffin ($8,900) – Blake Griffin is not necessarily the best player in this position on Monday night, but Griffin is the #1 option on the Clippers, & in a high-scoring game, that is going to mean points. OKC’s big men are talented & can do enough defensively, but outside of Serge Ibaka, Griffin should have no problem getting down on the block & really dominating Adams & Kanter, particularly with how much he will be fed by Chris Paul.
Other Options – Kristaps Porzingis ($7,400), Paul Millsap ($8,000), Derrick Favors ($7,800)
Marvin Williams ($5,700) – Williams is a double-double machine most nights & with his hustle & ability to play anywhere on the court due to his athleticism, he is a guy that would be a great utility player in a tournament game. He is not going to be the #1 option in Charlotte, but is a different maker & will out work Capela & Howard on the boards & tire them out when trying to guard him away from the paint.
LaMarcus Aldridge ($6,800) – It is truly a steal that Aldridge is available at this price with the production he has given the Spurs this year. Aldridge is a solid play every night he plays due to teams only being able to play man-to-man on him because of the weapons around him in Leonard, Duncan & the consistent guard play. He is coming off of a 50 DK point game recently. He handles his business in the scoring & rebounding area & will occasionally bring you a few blocks. He will have his way against Jordan Hill in the post and definitely on the baseline of Aldridge drifts out a bit.
Other options – Markieff Morris ($4,400), Ed Davis ($4,300)
Dwight Howard ($7,200) – On a night that is not meant for stellar center play, Howard is clearly the best of the bunch. When he has had the time to rest his back this year, he has been a monster. The only bad games he has had is when he has played back-to-backs, which at this point in his career, he really can’t do anymore. He will have a tough matchup against Al Jefferson on Monday, but the best part of that matchup is that Jefferson has to be able to block the lane for when Harden & Terrance Jones go to the basket, which should leave Howard open with space for putbacks & rebounds.
DeAndre Jordan ($6,900) – Jordan is a value pick & a stud pick tonight. He has a very favorable matchup against Adams & Kanter from OKC & he has had double-digit rebounds in 9 of his last 10 games, along with at least 2 blocks in 6 of those 10. Jordan makes his living with putbacks & dunks from Chris Paul setup plays & that shouldn’t change on Monday night.
Other Options – Karl Anthony Towns ($6,900), Brook Lopez ($6,700)
Jared Sullinger ($5,800) – Sullinger is going to be a popular play in tournament tonight because of the high scoring potential of Boston/Minnesota. He has had his ups & downs this year in terms of consistency scoring, but Sullinger has been a great rebounder for the Celtics & have been a big reason the Celtics are in contention for a strong season in the East. At under $6,000, he could be a good guy to have in your lineup tonight because of the offensive opportunities & defensive rebounding opportunities he should have with two times to like to put up a lot of shots.
Al Horford ($6,700) – Horford quietly goes about his business & is a solid center for the Hawks & should have a good matchup against Meyers Leonard & Mason Plumlee on Monday night. Even though this is not supposed to be a big scoring night, for guys like Horford who are just grinders & like to just work hard for the points & rebounds, it could be a very good evening for Hawks big men. I like Horford’s consistency in a cash game.
Other Options – Meyers Leonard ($3,700), Tim Duncan ($5,600)