Today’s NBA targets entry breaks down the seven NBA games we have on tap starting Monday night at 7:00, with a look at thestuds, sleepers and mid-range players you’ll want to consider getting into your lineups.
POINT GUARD TARGETS
- Chris Paul @ CHA ($9,500) – Still only one game all year with fewer than 37.5 points, and a very workable match-up tonight against the Hornets. He’s the one sure thing on the CLippers, night in and night out. The rebounds, assists and steals are always there, establishing a nice baseline, and when he scores like he did last time out, on almost 60% shooting, you’re basically guaranteed 40+ fantasy points.
- Damian Lillard @ PHI ($9,300) – You might be thinking, why buy in on Lillard when $200 more gets me Paul? Well, Lillard doesn’t have a single game in his last ten under 32 points, a stretch that includes four games over 40 and another three games over 50. He might play a different game than Paul, but for a slight savings, you are actually getting a guy with similar upside and the same virtually nonexistent serious downside. These guys do a lot of things, including scoring fantasy points.
- Isaiah Canaan vs. NY ($4,000) – Beverley came back for the Rockets’ most recent game, and played well, and then left with an injury. It’s as simple as that. For $4,000, you should end up with 25-30 minutes of floor time, which is about as much as you can ask for at that price.
- Aaron Brooks @ UTA ($4,900) – While it’s hard to tell on any given night exactly who is going to get the looks on offense on this team, Brooks is likely going to get the start with both Hinrich and Rose out. If all you’re looking for is an increased opportunity for low dollars, you can find it here, for tonight at least.
SHOOTING GUARD TARGETS
- James Harden vs. NY ($10,300) – He’s really good. You know that – it’s why he costs over $10,000 every single night he’s out there. So why tonight? Well, Beverley is out again, and as much as you’d love to see that create a cheap point guard option out of thin air, the reality is, that injury means Harden will simply have the ball in his hands ever more often than usual. Scary.
- Jimmy Butler @ UTA ($7,400) – With Rose out, he’s their #1 option. Sometimes he’s frustrating to own because he seems like he should be doing more with his opportunities – he just looks so good. He’s the perfect build for a slashing, rangy wingman, and when he makes up his mind he explodes towards the hoop. He didn’t do much of any of that last time out, but it was a weird game for the Bulls in general, losing by a ton by the time the fourth quarter rolls around. He’ll have bad games again, to be sure, but you can almost always expect more than the 27 minutes he logged.
- Iman Shumpert @ HOU ($4,800) – I am comfortable discussing him, right. here. It is sort of amazing to look at the stat sheet and think about how he manages to get up SO MANY shots in so few minutes, but he does it, consistently. His ability to get hot fast won him the Sixth Man of the Year award last season, and has gotten him 35.5 and 36 fantasy points in his last two outings.
- J.J. Redick @ CHA ($3,900) – His last few games have been his best shooting perfpormanes of the year, esepcially from downtown (7-14 in his last two). Earlier in the year, he was carrying himself from a fantasy perspective by filling up the box score with some hustle stats, but he wasn’t shooting. For the last couple, it’s been the opposite. Once of these days he’s going to put it all together… and you want to be there when it happens.
SMALL FORWARD TARGETS
- LeBron James vs. ORL ($11,300) – Because why not? Because – despite everything – he’s still averaging 8 more fantasy points than the next closest SF. Because his upside still pushes 70, and if he does that one someone else’s roster, you can’t win, no matter how wisely you spent the $2-$3,000 you saved by passing him up in the first place.
- Nicolas Batum @ PHI ($6,900) – Back from injury on Friday, he showed no ill effects, going right back out there for 32 minutes just yesterday. Before the injury, he was consistent, a safe bet to use and hope for 25-30 points. There is no reason to assume he’s something less now. Use him freely.
- Chris Copeland @ DAL ($5,500) – His price hasn’t changed much, and his minutes haven’t changed much, but his points have declined over the last couple of games with a diminishing number of shot attempts. If that’s a trend, we might have to move away from Copeland as a useful option for the time being, but if those two games were the fluke, and he is going to start getting his double-digit attempts every night again, then this price is a steal.
- Donatus Motiejunas vs. NY ($4,400) – He’s a small forward here on DraftKings. He’s also seven feet tall. Stay with me here. SEVEN. FEET. TALL. So, when you hear that Dwight Howard is out, and so is Terrance Jones, and then you hear that this SMALL forward is going to be a big beneficiary of the extra minutes kicking around, now you know why.
POWER FORWARD TARGETS
- LaMarcus Aldridge @ PHI ($9,600) – He’s pretty much always on this list. He’s good enough that, since NBA teams don’t play every day, I feel the need to remind you every time he does play, because certainly, you want to at least consider him, right? Right. And against Philly? Sign me up.
- Pau Gasol @ UTA ($7,300) – Kevin Love is always enticing, but the Cavs are hard to predict, and Love gets his consistency from rebounding more than scoring. And tonight, he’s going up against Vucevic, so if ever rebounds are going to be hard to come by, it’s tonight. Gasol, on the other hand, is a little banged up, but he is listed as probable, and if he plays, he’s the most skilled offensive bigman the Bulls have got right now, and it’s not close. You almost have to trust him and just hope his leg holds up.
- Nikola Mirotic @ UTA ($4,300) – This one is especially true if Gasol does not play (currently listed as probable, but has missed the last three). But even with Gasol out there, Taj Gibson is out, so Mirotic should see an uptick in minutes either way, he just might not reach the 35-minute level he hit on Friday when both Gasol and Gibson missed. But he’s a rookie who just stepped up when he got his chance, so keep your eye on him – anything is possible.
- Tarik Black vs. NY ($4,500) – A PF who is going to see his minutes increase because Dwight Howard is out, after I already mentioned that the Rockets have a SEVEN FOOT small forward? Well, it’s true, and Howard is not the only injury, and the Knicks are not a particularly good defense (putting it kindly). More than one fill-in could be useful here.
- Al Jefferson vs. LAC ($7,900) – Big Al’s got a drop step that no one can hang with in the post, never mind DeAndre Jordan. I will take the over at 4.5 times Jordan gets a foot and a half off the ground because of an up-fake, and also on Jefferson getting you 30+ fantasy points. He always does.
- Nikola Vucevic @ CLE ($8,700) – I listed these two in this order because I actually prefer Jefferson in this one, for a little less money, but Vucevic, as I have said before, is match-up proof. And the reason for that is that he is the best rebounder in the league. Period. Which makes him a travelling good match-up, even against someone like Kevin Love. This guy is Love’s problem, not the other way around.
- Enes Kanter vs. CHI ($6,200) – Chicago is not a great match-up, and Kanter’s playing time seems to flucuate based on game plan, and whether Coach Snyder believes he needs a smaller lineup out there for one reason or another. So, to make this call you have to be in the business of predicting how a game is going to go, which I usually try to avoid. However, with Gasol banged up and Gibson out, Chicago is not as daunting a foe for a big man as usual, and you could see Kanter being out there just to keep Noah tied up so help free up everyone else on the Jazz offense. But playing time is all Kanter needs to at least be useful.
- Robin Lopez @ PHI ($5,800) – Another big man playing the Sixers, Lopez is a relatively low-upside play who is almost a lock for 20+ points, who could easily stretch that to 30, useful for the price. Expect just fewer than 30 minutes of floor time, just enough for him to push for a double-double – if he gets that high, you’ve hit the jackpot.