WATCH: SALARY WATCH – LEBRON JAMES
We tip off the weekend with a nine game slate and some interesting options to choose from, so let’s jump right into some player to target tonight.
Russell Westbrook ($12,800) – We are going to have to see if there is enough value to find a way to fit Westbrook into our lineups today, but he is in a terrific spot. This game has a 224 projected point total and just a one point spread. Both teams are amongst the top 10 in game pace, so this should be an up-tempo matchup, creating plenty of touch opportunities for Westbrook. He is averaging a triple-double and has recorded one in six straight games, while topping 70 fantasy points four times over that stretch. He leads the league with a 40.2 percent usage rate and is clearly the top player on the board any time he is on the slate.
Other Options – Giannis Antetokounmpo $10,000, Kyle Lowry $8,100, Eric Bledsoe $7,400, Kemba Walker $7,200
Marcelo Huertas ($3,200) – Huertas got the start at point guard last game as the Lakers are dealing with a ton of injuries to their backcourt, and he could get the start once again tonight. If that is the case, he is in play as this is a favorable matchup against the Suns who have allowed +3.36 points above expectations to opposing point guards, per Fantasy Labs. In his last start, he played 31 minutes and scored 31.3 fantasy points. However, I am not expecting that type of production as he did have five steals which helped his bottom line. That being said, he is averaging 0.82 fantasy points per minute and could play 25-28 minutes, which could translate to roughly 20 fantasy points and a potential high return on investment considering his price.
Other Options – Deron Williams $6,000, Dennis Schroder $6,000
James Harden ($11,500) – Harden is in a phenomenal spot against his former team. The Thunder have allowed +2.99 points above expectations to opposing shooting guards. Harden is averaging 58.9 fantasy points per game, but has topped 60 fantasy points in three of his last six games. He is sixth in the NBA with a 36.7 percent usage rate and stuffs the stat sheet every night. This should be a paced up game with plenty of touch opportunities for Harden.
Other Options – DeMar DeRozan $7,900
Wesley Matthews ($5,100) – Matthews has been playing well as of late, averaging 35.5 minutes, 19.6 points and 30.9 fantasy points per game in his last five games, while draining 21 threes during that stretch. In the last 10 games, he has exceeded value 70 percent of the time by an average of 6.69 points, per Fantasy Labs. Tonight he faces the Pacers who are giving up three 3-pointers per game to opposing shooting guards. He does not offer many peripheral stats, but as long as his shot is falling (as it has been in recent games), he should be just fine. The Pacers are currently playing at the ninth highest pace, which should provide some extra looks for Matthews tonight.
Other Options – Nicolas Batum $6,500, Victor Oladipo $6,500, Evan Fournier $5,300
Paul George ($8,000) – Tonight, George will face the Mavs for the second time this season. In the last meeting, he scored 25 points, dished out six dimes and grabbed 8 boards, which was good for 45 fantasy points. He has topped 40 fantasy points in 2 straight games and in 5 of his last 8 games. Dallas has allowed the fifth most fantasy points per game to opposing small forwards (last 5 games). George remains at an attractive price, making him an enticing play tonight.
Other Options – LeBron James $9,200
Jae Crowder ($5,700) – Crowder has been providing consistent production on a nightly basis. In his last eight games, he is averaging 14.9 points, 4.6 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 28.3 fantasy points per game. During that stretch, he has topped 30 fantasy points four times. He does not have the highest of ceilings, but offers a steady floor at a reasonable price, especially with Isaiah Thomas out again tonight.
Other Options – Rudy Gay $6,700, Trevor Ariza $5,500, Norman Powell $4,000 (if he starts)
DeMarcus Cousins ($10,900) – As you can see, there are a lot of elite plays tonight. Cousins draws a good matchup against the Knicks who have allowed +2.06 points above expectations to opposing power forwards. Just a few nights ago, he erupted for 36 points, 13 rebounds, 3 blocks, and 68.75 fantasy points against the Knicks. He is averaging 52.8 fantasy points per game, but has topped 59 in four of his last five games. If you are not able to fit in Harden or Westbrook, Boogie is more affordable and offers a ton of upside with a very high floor. He is currently third in the NBA with a 36.5 percent usage rate (more than Harden).
Other Options – Kristaps Porzingis $7,700, Kevin Love $7,600, Paul Millsap $7,500
Jabari Parker ($6,400) – Parker has been shooting the ball well as of late, and that has translated into fantasy points. In his last five games, he is averaging 21 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.2 steals, and 32.9 fantasy points per game. Tonight he faces off against Atlanta who has allowed +1.29 points above expectations to opposing power forwards.
Other Options – Harrison Barnes $6,100, Julius Randle $6,000, Tobias Harris $5,800
Andre Drummond ($7,600) – Drummond remains reasonably priced for his potential. He has eclipsed 50 fantasy points three times in the last nine games. In his last 10 games, he has exceeded value 70 percent of the time by an average of 4.12 points, per Fantasy Labs. He faces a Timberwolves team that has allowed +3.49 points above expectations to opposing centers. He averages a double-double and has one in five consecutive games.
Other Options – Hassan Whiteside $8,800, Karl-Anthony Towns $8,300, Dwight Howard $7,200, Al Horford $6,900
Nikola Vucevic ($5,900) – Vucevic continues to play off the bench, but it has not hurt his production. He has scored over 30 fantasy points in nine straight games and has eight double-doubles during that stretch. In his last 10 games, he has exceeded value 90 percent of the time by an average of 9.71 points. He faces a Hornets team that has allowed +1.12 points above expectations to opposing centers. If you are looking to save some salary tonight at the center position, Vucevic makes a lot of sense. (Reminder – Vucevic is questionable for tonight’s game (eye). Updates on his status can be found on the DK Live app, available in the app store!)
Other Options – Clint Capela $5,600, Tyson Chandler $4,400
Note: Keep a close eye on news prior to lock as this could open up some value plays that were not considered early in the day.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Armando28) 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.