WATCH: ON FIRE: ERIC BLEDSOE
In a ten-game slate of Wednesday NBA action, a few of the normal top options are not available to you here, meaning the big choice here is “Westbrook, or no Westbrook.” Here are a few names to consider from every position and price range, no matter which way you go on Russ.
Russell Westbrook vs. WAS ($12,600) – It’s tough not to write him up now that he is officially averaging a triple double after dishing out 46 assists over his last three games, and doing it while still putting up 30+ points per night. Going against a Washington team that will feature Wall trying to penetrate and create all night, Westbrook will be pushing to do the same himself on the other end, and could easily be looking at a 75+ fantasy point night rather than one of his pedestrian 60+ point nights.
Isaiah Thomas vs. DET ($7,600) – He has scored at least 23 points in five straight, including a 24-8 night against these Pistons almost two weeks ago. He is the most consistent cog in Boston’s game plan night in and night out, and when you factor in his ability to drain multiple threes (+.5 bonus), he is a fantasy asset you can rely on for somewhat of a savings.
Other Options – John Wall ($9,300), Damian Lillard ($8,600)
Jamal Murray vs. MIA ($4,500) – Usage and minutes are never easy to predict with this Denver squad, but Murray seems to be carving out a role for himself, and in the process he has netted 30 or more fantasy points in four of his last five. He has shown an ability to contribute in a number of ways, averaging 21-5-2 over those four games.
Other Options – Dennis Schroder ($5,900), Sergio Rodriguez ($4,300)
DeMar DeRozan vs. MEM ($8,000) – Players like DeRozan are often devalued because they don’t contribute in a lot of ways outside of their scoring. But for a $1,000 savings over Jimmy Butler, the priciest SG on the board, DeRozan is getting you just as many fantasy points per game, and there is no reason to expect that to stop in a plus matchup against the banged-up Grizzlies. He has dropped off somewhat since his otherworldly start, but expecting 25+ points and a solid overall game is reasonable enough to qualify him as an excellent cash-game option for me.
Editor’s Note: Dwyane Wade (tooth) is questionable tonight. Be sure to follow DK Live for the latest news.
Dwyane Wade vs. LAL ($6,700) – Wade closed out Chicago’s recent road trip with three excellent games, averaging just over 25 real points a game against the Clips, Nuggets and Sixers. And now he is back home, where he has played better all season long, and with a few days rest under his belt. He should be able to get his shot whenever he wants against these Laker defenders, making him a nice upside play at the price tonight. Remember to check back on Wade’s status, as there is some question of whether or not he will play tonight.
Other Options – Jimmy Butler ($9,000)
Josh Richardson @ DEN ($5,100) – Richardson has gotten his minutes in a bunch of different ways this season, but he has managed to produce decent numbers regardless. He has played almost 30 minutes in each of his last two games, and if that keeps up tonight he could see even more value than usual in a matchup in Denver that is likely going to force Miami into a more uptempo game than they’re used to (and that means more volume than is baked into Richardson’s salary).
Other Options – Darren Collison ($5,300)
Kawhi Leonard @ DAL ($8,100) – He went for 24 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists and a steal the last time these two teams met. The way he is being used in this offense, his ceiling seems to be somewhere in the mid-40’s in terms of fantasy points, but these two teams usually play tight games, meaning Leonard should be out there plenty and very involved, keeping his floor relatively high.
Wilson Chandler vs. MIA ($7,000) – One of the most consistent performers for Denver so far this season, he is getting run with the first and second units, and is facing a Miami team with some depth issues, which means this isn’t a matchup you should fear, at least not tonight. Coming off a two-game run in which he has scored more than 100 fantasy points, I like him to keep the momentum going in this one.
Other Options – Devin Booker ($6,300)
Glenn Robinson III @ POR ($5,300) – He has played 39 and 40 minutes in the Pacers’ last two games without Paul George. With C.J. Miles likely to miss yet another game tonight as well, he could be in line for that kind of usage once again. He is not shooting enough to give himself real upside, despite the minutes, but he is playing efficiently, shooting 13-for-19 from the field with only one turnover, which is more than enough to make him useful at this price.
Other Options – Marcus Morris ($4,600)
DeMarcus Cousins @ PHI ($10,800) – He has been at 55 or more fantasy points in four straight, including a a 72-point outburst at Washington two nights ago (36 points and 20 boards). He is going to look to put his skills on display against Embiid in this one, and another big offensive night should mean huge fantasy output, because the boards should be there against the rest of this front court.
Paul Millsap @ PHO ($7,500) – A better cash game option than GPP choice in my opinion, his shooting percentages are keeping his upside somewhat depressed. Nevertheless, he is a key part of everything Atlanta does, and in a fast paced matchup against Phoenix, it’s hard to imagine a particularly bad game for him at the price.
Other Options – Kristaps Porzingis ($7,700), Myles Turner ($6,800)
Jon Leuer @ BOS ($4,400) – Boston’s perimeter defense has come on strong lately, which could lead to Detroit trying to get the ball in close even more often that usual. Attacking what has been a weak spot for the Celtics for two years makes a lot of sense anyway – and right now, Leuer is one of the key guys Detroit can turn to to do just that. He is averaging 10 points and six boards on the year, but has been seeing his minutes slowly creep up – he had a couple of outings with 30+ minutes on the floor last week, and with the way he has produced when he’s out there, if that continues you will definitely see his price tag rise in the near future.
Other Options – Thaddeus Young ($5,700)
Karl-Anthony Towns vs. NY ($8,300) – Towns can score in a one-on-one situation with just about anyone in the league – and certainly against anyone on this Knicks roster, so I would expect his relatively high usage rate to continue here (he has at least 19 shot attempts in each of his last three games). He hasn’t been shooting very efficiently over that stretch, but against this defense, that could change in a hurry making him a potential 50+ fantasy point upside play tonight.
Dwight Howard @ PHO ($7,200) – He has played 33 or more minutes in three of his last four, up from his season average of only 28, and it is easy to see why: he looks good. Coming into the season, of course you’d want to be careful with a player with his history, but with him putting up numbers and, frankly, just passing the eye test, he is once again an obviously useful player for his team to have out on the floor (not something every one of his teams could have said over recent years). His averages of 14.3 points and 12.7 rebounds over the last two weeks make him very fantasy relevant as well.
Other Options – Hassan Whiteside ($8,800)
Joel Embiid vs. SAC ($6,500) – Watching him play really just makes you wish there were no injury concerns: no minutes restriction, no missing back-to-backs. Because when he is out there, he is a force to be reckoned with no matter the matchup – he got 22-9 in just 25 minutes against Cleveland three nights ago. But take comfort in knowing that if he were playing a bunch more minutes, he wouldn’t be this cheap, so just take the inexpensive upside and go with it.
Other Options – Al Horford ($6,600), Taj Gibson ($5,500)
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theasquad) 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.