WATCH: 3 IN THE KEY – RICKY RUBIO
After a huge 11-game slate on Monday, there are just three games on Tuesday night. However, there are still plenty of nice prize pools, so let’s jump into some of tonight’s players to target.
Kyrie Irving ($8,400) – The Cavs will be without Kevin Love and J.R. Smith tonight. In instances like this, Irving sees an uptick of five percent in usage. Over the last 10 games, he has exceeded value 70 percent of the time by an average of 5.28 points. During that stretch, he has topped 40 DKFP seven times, including a 50-plus and 60-plus DKFP game. In addition, he is eighth in the league with a 32.6 percent usage rate in the last four games, which is a three percent uptick from his season average. The Timberwolves are ranked 23rd in defensive efficiency, making this a favorable situation for Irving.
Other Options – Kyle Lowry $8,000
Ricky Rubio ($6,900) – There is not a ton of value at this position tonight, but there are some mid-tier point guards that are intriguing, starting with Rubio. Kyrie Irving is not known for his defense, and the fact that the Cavs yield the third-most fantasy points per game to opposing point guards confirms that. Although Rubio is not known for his offense, he has shot 50 percent in three of his last four games, topping 40 fantasy points in each of those three games. He has also recorded three double-doubles during that stretch and is always a threat to post a triple-double. With Zach LaVine sidelined, Rubio is one of the main beneficiaries, seeing a 2.7 percent boost in usage rate.
Other Options – Darren Collison $7,100, D’Angelo Russell $5,600
DeMar DeRozan ($8,000) – DeRozan is a tad expensive, but if you are looking for a high floor and upside at the shooting guard position, he is your guy. He has topped 38 fantasy points in four consecutive games and continues to average over 20 field goal attempts per game. He currently sits fifth in the NBA with a 34.1 percent usage rate. The Bulls have been stingy against opposing shooting guards, but over their last 10 games they have allowed an average of 38.4 DKFP per game. DeRozan should fare well against the banged up Bulls – after all, he did score 54 DKFP in their last contest.
Lou Williams ($5,400) – The minutes are not secure, which instantly makes Williams a tournament play only for me. However, the risk/reward factor is definitely there. Despite averaging just 22.2 minutes per game over his last five, he has averaged 28.2 fantasy points per game during that stretch. That equates to 1.3 fantasy points per minute, and for the season he is averaging 1.2 fantasy points per minute, so this is not a random hot streak. The Lakers face the Kings, who are giving up the third-most fantasy points per game to shooting guards and have actually allowed the most fantasy points per game in their last five. They also give up the most 3-pointers per game, which is a huge plus for Williams, who averages 2.1 3-pointers per game.
Other Options – Kyle Korver $4,400, Jordan Clarkson $3,700
Andrew Wiggins ($7,600) – In the last five games with Zach LaVine out, Wiggins’ usage rate is 30.4 percent compared to the 27.6 percent it is for the season. Of all the Timberwolves, he benefits the most with LaVine off the court, as he sees an uptick of 5.1 percent in usage rate. Over his last three games, he has topped 40 fantasy points in each contest and is averaging 29 points, five rebounds, four assists, 2.3 steals and 18.3 field goal attempts per game, while shooting a healthy 58.2 percent from the field. While the matchup may not appear to be favorable, the Cavs are yielding the fifth-most fantasy points per game to the position.
Other Options – LeBron James $10,500, Jimmy Butler $8,600 (check status)
Matt Barnes ($5,100) – Barnes continues to play big minutes for the Kings, averaging 32.3 minutes per game over his last six. During that stretch, he has averaged 11.2 points, 8.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 31.1 DKFP per game. Due to all the injuries for the Kings, Barnes has become a big part of the rotation. Tonight he faces the Lakers, who have struggled against small forwards, giving up the third-most fantasy points per game to the position. In addition, they rank 29th in defensive efficiency and play at a very fast pace. The Lakers are also ranked 26th in turnover ratio with 13.6 per game, which is good news for Barnes, who averages nearly a steal per game. He can find many ways to accumulate fantasy points in this contest and should have no trouble paying off his affordable salary.
Other Options – DeMarre Carroll $4,200
DeMarcus Cousins ($12,100) – Boogie is the most expensive player on the slate by a wide margin. However, if value opens up and you can fit him into your lineups, it is something to strongly consider. The Lakers give up the second-most fantasy points per game to opposing power forwards. In addition, they are giving up 44.4 rebounds per game with a -0.3 differential, while yielding the most rebounds per game to the position. Boogie spots a 37.4 percent usage rate and has been doing a lot of the ball handling for the Kings as of late, averaging eight dimes per game in his last five. He has fared well against the Lakers this season, averaging 58.5 fantasy points per game against them, so I don’t think there is any reason to think he will not have a big evening.
Gorgui Dieng ($5,300) – Dieng does not offer a ton of upside, but does play consistent minutes and provides a steady floor. There are not many options at this position, so if you cannot fit in Boogie with a lineup you are comfortable with, I think Dieng makes sense. He averages 26.8 fantasy points per game and has 30-plus fantasy point upside. The matchup is not one that favors him, but on such a short slate, it is tough to check off all the boxes.
Other Options – Anthony Tolliver $3,900
Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,000) – Towns absolutely dominated against the Cavs in their last meeting, scoring 26 points with 12 rebounds, four dimes, two blocks and a steal. That performance was good for 55 DKFP. The Timberwolves host the Cavs, which benefits Towns, who plays much better at home. In Minnesota, he averages 8.8 more fantasy points per game, as well as more points and more boards, while shooting six percent better from the field. The Cavs are giving up the fourth most rebounds per game to opposing bigs, so Towns should have his way in the paint. He is the cheapest of the high-salary players, but offers as much upside as both of them.
Tristan Thompson ($5,500) – Thompson has played over 30 minutes in six consecutive games. During that stretch, he is averaging 13.5 points, 9.8 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 0.8 blocks and 30.9 fantasy points per game, while recording three double-doubles. His price is very reasonable considering his recent production and makes for an enticing tournament play in my opinion.
Other Options – Jonas Valanciunas $5,400, Lucas Nogueira $3,400
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.