There are five games awaiting us on this festive NBA night. For those of you out and about ringing in the New Year, remember to be safe! This article will focus on the main slate tipping off at 7:00pm ET.
If you have any questions, you can reach out to me on Twitter @EmacDFS.
Russell Westbrook – OKC vs LAC – $12,500 – There is a chance that Chris Paul will play tonight (he does remain doubtful, so check back closer to tip) as word from the Clippers was that he would have been able to play last night against the Houston Rockets if it would have been a playoff scenario. While CP3 is a terrific defender, Westbrook is on another world right now with his level of play. In his last five matchups against Chris Paul he has averaged 35.8mpg, 29.2ppg, 8.4rpg, 10.4apg and 2.2 combined blocks/steals on his way to 59.2 DraftKings points per game.
Giannis Antetokounmpo – MIL at CHI – $9,800 – The $2,700 discount we get by rolling with Antetokounmpo is significant, and when we look at the Greek youngster’s combined stat line from his previous two meetings with the Bulls this year (37.0mpg, 26.0ppg, 10.5rpg, 7.0apg, 1.0bpg, 3.0spg, 59.6 DKPTs) and our upgrades at other positions, this is a very enticing route to choose.
Other Options – James Harden ($11,900), Kyrie Irving ($7,900), Kemba Walker ($7,800)
Michael Carter-Williams – CHI vs MIL – $3,000 – It looks like Rajon Rondo may have already worn out his welcome in Chicago after getting benched for the second half of yesterday’s game against the Pacers. This puts the former Rookie of the Year squarely in play at his minimum price tag and he is one of the value pieces that will get you Russell Westbrook and another high-end option tonight.
Other Options – Patrick Beverley ($5,500), George Hill ($6,500)
James Harden – HOU vs NYK – $11,900 – At only a $600 discount to Russell Westbrook today, it would make sense that a lot of gamers will scrape together the difference to “pay up” for the OKC star. That is just fine by me as we were reminded last night just how amazing The Beard is in Coach Mike D’Antoni’s system as he logged his seventh triple double and tallied 75.8 DraftKings points in just 34 minutes of play.
Other Options – Jimmy Butler ($8,600)
Rodney Hood – UTA vs PHO – $4,700 – After dealing with sickness, it looks like Hood is fully recovered and raring to go. While he is heavily scoring dependent, his discounted price tag and the matchup with the Suns, who have been woeful against shooting guards this season, make him an incredibly attractive option for all formats.
Malcolm Brogdon – MIL at CHI – $3,900 – It looks like Matthew Dellavedova may miss another game which puts Brogdon on a path for 30ish minutes of floor time. I think the former University of Virginia star is a fine play at either guard position for this evening’s contests.
Other Options – Tony Snell ($3,500), Joe Johnson ($3,200)
LeBron James – CLE at CHA – $10,400 – Our good buddy LeBron James is checking in at a favorable price point for this road matchup in Charlotte. In the two previous meetings between these squads he is averaging 40.3mpg, 31.5ppg, 8.5rpg, 9.0apg and 3.0 combined blocks/steals for 62.1 DraftKings points. You have to think he will want to perform well in front of the Hornets owner tonight as well in a meta-game of one-upmanship.
Gordon Hayward – UTA vs PHO – $8,000 – This is a nice matchup for Hayward who should be able to showcase his all-around game against Phoenix tonight. In his last four meetings with the Suns he has scored no fewer than 39 DKPTs giving him a nice floor his production.
Other Options – Jabari Parker ($7,200)
Michael Beasley – MIL at CHI – $3,300 – If Matthew Dellavedova is out again tonight, Beasley should be one of the beneficiaries of the extra minutes. He has been a point per minute performer over his last three games and is averaging 20mpg and 20.6 DraftKings points which is an excellent return for his near minimum price tag.
Other Options – Nikola Mirotic ($4,100), T.J. Warren ($4,800), Jeremy Lamb ($4,000)
Kristaps Porzingis – NYK at HOU – $7,200 – With Carmelo Anthony logging 40 minutes last night (and Porzingis playing 38 himself), there is a good chance he hovers around the 30 minute mark in tonight’s matchup. That will open up a lot of usage and opportunity for The Zinger while ‘Melo is on the bench in a game ripe with fantasy goodness.
Other Options – Kevin Love ($8,700), Jabari Parker ($7,200)
Derrick Favors – UTA vs PHO – $4,300 – Favors’ minutes continue to creep up as he regains his strength after missing a month with a knee injury. He has moved back into the starting lineup, and I think he is a savvy play in this matchup at his current price point since he should see 22-25 minutes.
Nikola Mirotic – CHI vs MIL – $4,100 – Mirotic missed the first two games of this series, but he has seen an increasing role over the last two weeks and he should see enough court time to reach 20-25 DraftKings points. If his shot is falling, he can flirt with the thirty fantasy point plateau.
Other Options – Marreese Speights ($4,200)
Rudy Gobert – UTA vs PHO – $7,300 – The Stifle Tower does not carry a lot of upside because he rarely shoots more than half a dozen times per game, though he does make most of his shots and is a near lock for double digit rebounds.
Other Options – Kevin Love ($8,200)
Steven Adams – OKC vs LAC – $5,100 – Adams should see 26-30 minutes in this matchup since the Thunder will need him to neutralize DeAndre Jordan. He has 30+ DraftKings point upside in this matchup and should be in the mix for a double double.
Montrezl Harrell – HOU vs NYK – $5,000 – Harrell notched a career high 29 points last night against the Los Angeles Clippers, and while we cannot expect to see that again anytime soon, he has been steady as the replacement for Clint Capela over the last half dozen games averaging 26.2mpg, 15.3ppg, 4.0rpg, 1.8apg and 2.0 combined blocks/steals for a solid 25.6 DraftKings points per contest. Even if Nene Hilaro gets another start, Harrell should still play more minutes.
Other Options – Robin Lopez ($4,600)
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is emac) 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.