Today’s NBA Targets breakdown takes a look at the 5-game NBA slate we have tonight and tried to help you identify a couple of studs and a couple of less expensive players at each position that you’re going to at least want to consider getting into your lineups.
POINT GUARD TARGETS
- Chris Paul vs. SA ($9,800) – On paper, the Spurs aren’t a great match-up, but players like Chris Paul are their own good match-up. A travelling good match-up, if you would. The Spurs can score, the Clips can keep up – and Paul is going to be involved. He’s got five consecutive double-doubles, and his lowest-scoring game of the year was 35 fantasy points. He’s a can’t miss choice.
- Jeff Teague @ NY ($7,300) – Teague has been out on the court a lot, averaging more than 35 minutes a night which just gives him tons of opportunities to rack up fantasy points, especially for a guy capable of giving you great defensive stats on any given night. He doesn’t always score, but he doesn’t have to to get you a big fantasy night.
- Donald Sloan vs. UTA ($4,900) – Sloan has been living on this list this season, and although his price has dropped quite a bit from it’s $6,000 peak last week, he is still logging the minutes with all of Indiana’s backcourt issues. As is everyone else at this price level, he’s a risk, but the opportunity is still there, and Indiana needs someone to score – he did drop 31 just two games ago.
- Brandon Jennings @ CHI ($5,600) – Jennings has gotten at least 31 minutes and at least a dozen shot attempts in three of his last four, and led the Pistons in scoring last night. He’s a streaky shooter, but when he’s hot, he could carry your team, and that potential is a value at this price. And even if he doesn’t explode on offense, he is also averaging more than five assists and a steal – which always helps boost the final numbers.
SHOOTING GUARD TARGETS
- Gordon Hayward @ IND ($7,800) – Shooting guard is a thin position tonight, with Hayward being the priciest option on the board. Indiana just isn’t the match-up nightmare it used to be, and Hayward has been very consistent, with no fewer than 27.25 fantasy points in any game yet this year. He’s a good bet to get you 30-40 fantasy points, but not much more than that.
- Jimmy Butler vs DET ($6,100) – He’s listed as questionable, but he has been dealing with this same thumb injury all along now, and he is still logging 35+ minutes a night. The shoulder issue seems minor, and should not affect his ability to continue to stuff the stat sheet, helping you with rebounds, assists, steals and points virtually every night he’s out there. For a stud, a starter, and one of his team’s best players, he’s also still giving you a lot of savings over the top guys at his position.
- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope @ CHI ($4,500) – Minutes, minutes, minutes. He’s got ’em, at least right now, and the price is right. He’s not getting assists or defensive stats, so you’re hoping for a big scoring night and a few rebounds to help augment the total – so the ceiling is not that high. But, minutes.
- Iman Shumpert vs. ATL ($4,500) – He is doing a little bit of everything, including scoring, especially recently. As long as the Knicks injury woes are getting him 30+ minutes every night, he’s hard to get away from at this price.
SMALL FORWARD TARGETS
- LeBron James vs. NO ($10,500) – He averages more than 43 fantasy points a game, even with two games closer to the 30-point range. I mean, he’s pretty much always in play, right? Do I spend up for LeBron is a question that runs through everyone’s mind when they’re building their lineups. But LeBron is so good – just so dominating – that whether he is worth the money mon any given night is up to him, not some external factor. So good luck predicting it. But if you want something to support spending the money, you know he’s going to want to put on a better show than he did opening night in this, now his second home game back in front of the Cleveland faithful.
- Carmelo Anthony vs. ATL ($8,400) – Hey, he’s shooting the ball 20+ times every game. What’s not to like? (And remember, Knicks fans, we’re talking about fantasy here, not successful team basketball).
- Kawhi Leonard @ LAC ($5,600) – He’s been underperforming. And his monster games are hard to predict, because he’s not always scoring. But luckily, he doesn’t need a monster game to justify this price, just a good one. And it’s nice to know that the potential is there for a double-double with other stats thrown in every time he steps on the floor.
- Solomon Hill vs. UTA ($4,200) – He’s not all that exciting, but he plays a couple of positions and he can help you out with steals as well as points and rebounds. He’s getting a ton of minutes and last time out, he also got a ton of shots up – if that continues, this price is going to climb pretty quickly.
POWER FORWARD TARGETS
- Anthony Davis @ CLE ($11,000) – You know what Kevin Love’s not known for? His defense. And if that means the Cavs intend to try to contain this monster with Anderson Varejao, you’re going to want to get a piece of this action.
- Blake Griffin vs. SA ($9,400) – If you’re the kind of fantasy player who might consider starting Griffin, don’t let his recent illness deter you – he’s still been getting the minutes, and will continue to get them, especially as the Clippers try to get on the right track against the defending champs. This could be a high-scoring affair, and the Clips don’t do high-scoring without Griffin’s help.
- Chris Copeland vs. UTA ($6,000) – We needed a minute to figure out what the Pacers were going to do with their minutes. And now that we’re starting to figure it out, Copeland’s price has risen pretty quickly. This is not a surprise – he’s taken the minutes they’ve given him and run with them, with scoring and rebounding production that is boosted by the fact that much of his scoring comes from behind the arc, which always helps.
- Amar’e Stoudemire vs. ATL ($5,100) – He’s getting more minutes than anyone thought he would be this season, and he’s got a good match-up. This production likely won’t last all season, so you might as well take advantage while you can.
- DeAndre Jordan vs. SA ($7,500) – I have to talk about him, because he is one of only three centers priced over $7,000 tonight. So, he’s your stud for this evening. But before you say to yourself that you should just spend on another position since Jordan does not have a great match-up, center is thin everywhere tonight.
- Al Horford @ NY ($7,300) – Another quality player with a tough match-up, Horford has been really consistent this season… right up until he played NY for the first time, two nights ago, when he finished with 6 points and 6 rebounds.
- Enes Kanter @ IND ($4,900) – Kanter’s playing time has spiked since the first few games of the year, and he’s now getting right around that great 30-minute threshold, and he’s actually producing. He had 14/11 the other night, and he’s scored as many as 18 in the last week. He’s not more expensive yet because for a big man, he gives you nothing on the defensive end, with zero blocks and one steal so far on the year.
- Omer Asik vs. CLE ($5,900) – If you’re in the market for 15-30 fantasy points in 25 or so minutes, Asik is your man. Hey, don’t blame the guy – it’s gotta be tough to rebound or score when you’re reasonable sure Anthony Davis will just take care of it for you if you don’t.