We tip off the weekend with a nine-game slate and plenty of options to choose from. Let’s jump right into some players to target tonight.
Damian Lillard ($9,100) – Lillard is averaging more than 35 minutes per game and owns a very high usage rate of 33.7 percent. This is a contest that has a 207 projected total and just a two-point spread, so a blowout is unlikely and both teams are expected to score more than 100 points. Dame has topped 40 fantasy points in all but one game this season and has displayed his 50+ and 60+ fantasy point upside on occasions this season and in the past.
Other Options – Chris Paul $8,600, John Wall $8,500, Kemba Walker $7,500, Eric Bledsoe $7,000
J.J. Barea ($4,800) – Barea continues to play solid minutes for a backcourt that is dealing with injuries. He is averaging 31.4 minutes per game and has yet to play fewer than 27 minutes in a game, while being involved in the offense with a usage rate of 21.9 percent. The Blazers play paced up, which could create some extra touches for Barea and they have allowed 4.5 points above expectations to point guards, per Fantasy Labs. At this price, he should be able to hit value and has displayed his upside to smash it too, with two 30+ fantasy point games this season.
Other Options – Deron Williams $5,400, Tyler Johnson $4,600
DeMar DeRozan ($8,000) – The price is getting up there for DeRozan, but if you are looking to pay up and find consistency at a position that usually does not offer that, he is your guy. He is shooting like a man possessed this season, averaging 36 points per game and a healthy field goal percentage of 55.4. He has yet to score fewer than 42 fantasy points in any game this season. His usage is through the roof at 38.1 percent and he is playing 37 minutes per game. There is plenty to like about DeRozan tonight.
Other Options – Jimmy Butler $7,900, Nicolas Batum $6,600, Dwayne Wade $6,400
Brandon Knight ($5,200) – Knight is in a great spot against the Pelicans, who have allowed 6.47 points above expectations to guards this season, per Fantasy Labs. He is averaging 30 minutes per game and owns the third-highest usage rate for the Suns at 24.6 percent. He relies heavily on scoring and he is a streaky shooter, so there is some volatility in rostering him, however, there is also great upside. Both of these teams are in the top six as far as game pace is concerned, so this should be an up-tempo game. This game also has a healthy projection of 211.5 points.
Other Options – Wesley Matthews $5,000
Kawhi Leonard ($8,300) – Targeting this game is not something I want to do or am thrilled about, but if you want to pay up at this position, it will have to be for Leonard, as Durant and company will likely blowout the Lakers, thus limiting his upside. Even in a slow-paced game against the Jazz a couple nights ago, Leonard managed to score 47 fantasy points. He stuffs the stat sheet just about every night, plays heavy minutes (32 MPG), and has a usage rate of 34 percent. I do not want to say that he is completely matchup proof, but it certainly appears that way thus far.
Other Options – Kevin Durant $10,100
Kent Bazemore ($4,900) – Bazemore has played 28 or more minutes in two consecutive games and that has translated to 23+ fantasy points in each of those games. He has a usage rate of 19.5 and the Hawks are 10th in pace per game, creating more opportunities for him. He is also averaging two steals per game, and contributes in assists and boards. He has attempted double-digit shots in two of his last three games. At this price he presents some value.
Other Options – T.J. Warren $6,300, Justice Winslow $5,600, Bojan Bogdanovic $4,600
Anthony Davis ($10,900) – Davis has only struggled in two games this season and both were against two of the bottom four teams in game pace (Memphis and San Antonio). Tonight he faces the Suns, who currently play at the third-fastest pace, which bodes well for Davis. He has topped 69 fantasy points three times this season and is arguably one of the better players whenever he is healthy, and that happens to be the case at this time. He should eat tonight.
Other Options – Blake Griffin $8,200, Draymond Green $7,800, Paul Milsap $7,700
Marvin Williams ($5,200) – Williams has been solid this season, averaging 26.5 fantasy points, 10 points, eight rebounds, one steal, and a little under a block per game, yet he remains reasonably priced. Tonight he has a good matchup against the Nets, who are playing paced up and have allowed 4.11 points above expectations to power forwards, per Fantasy Labs. He has one double-double this season and has flirted with one on two other occasions. Williams has exceeded value 60 percent of the time by an average of +3.89 points and is in a good spot to do so again tonight.
Other Options – Dirk Nowitzki $5,900, Markieff Morris $5,400, Lance Nance Jr. $4,000
Hassan Whiteside ($8,400) – Whiteside is coming off of his worst game of the season, but had his hands full against Boogie Cousins, and although Jonas Valanciunas is a good center, he is not Boogie. Whiteside is averaging 19.8 points, 13.8 rebounds, three blocks, and 44.8 fantasy points per game. He averaged 34 fantasy points per game against the Raptors last season, but was also playing fewer minutes. This season he is averaging 30 minutes per game and has a 28.1 percent usage rate. He is all but guaranteed a double-double and is one of the few players that offers triple-double upside.
Other Options – DeAndre Jordan $7,000, Marc Gasol $6,700
Mason Plumlee ($4,900) – Plumlee is someone that I have been rostering often this season and it is mostly because of his price. He is a center that contributes to numerous categories and eventually will have a big game. He grabs boards, is a good passer, and can score points. At this price he presents a ton of value, considering his upside. Dallas has allowed +1.66 points above expectations to opposing centers, per Fantasy Labs. Plumlee has exceeded value 70 percent of the time by an average of 3.11 points. If you’re looking to go cheap at center and roster a player who has been productive and also offers upside, Plumlee is your guy.
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.