The big headline Thursday in the NBA is the trade deadline. Teams are already wheeling and dealing, which could make for a fun afternoon. We also have a five-game evening slate in DFS that could be significantly impacted by trades.Read More
Although we only have six games in the NBA on Wednesday, injuries have the potential to make a major impact on several games.Read More
As far as Friday’s go, this isn’t exactly a busy one with seven games in the NBA. Still, that leaves us with a lot of viable options to wade through in DFS, so let’s highlight a couple of players at each position to target.Read More
With only two games in the NBA on Thursday, viable cheap value play options are few and far between. We’ll have to go a little higher up the price scale to find quality options to fill out your entry.Read More
*Mike Barner — @rotomikebarner*
We’ve only got three games in the NBA on Thursday, leaving us with very few value options to choose from. That being said, there are still some players to highlight who have favorable matchups that are still worth considering. Don’t forget to sign up for our Newsletter and try our Playerlab tool, where you can filter the stats that matter the most and help build a winning entry on FanDuel and DraftKings.
Darren Collison, IND at LAL
FanDuel = $6,300
DraftKings = $4,700
It looks like the Pacers will be without Victor Olaipo (knee) once again. Collison hasn’t seen a significant increase in playing time, but he is averaging 7.6 assists across five games with Oladipo out compared to 4.8 assists for the season, overall. His 16.6 percent usage rate isn’t all that appealing, but Collison might be able to contribute enough across the board Thursday in this matchup against a Lakers team that plays at the fifth-fastest pace (103.9 possessions per game).
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, LAC at SAC
FanDuel = $5,200
DraftKings = $4,900
An injury to Avery Bradley opened up a starting spot for Gilgeous-Alexander that he has yet to relinquish. Don’t expect him to lose the job anytime soon, either, since he is averaging 12.5 points, 3.8 rebounds, three assists and one steal across 11 games. His usage rate is also 19.7 percent as a starter, up from 15.6 percent when he was coming off of the bench. Both the Clippers and the Kings are in the top-eight in the league in pace of play, which could leave Gilgeous-Alexander with a few more opportunities to provide value.
Buddy Hield, SAC vs. LAC
FanDuel = $6,000
DraftKings = $5,700
Hield was limited to 25 minutes a game last year, but the Kings are giving him a chance to shine this season with 31 minutes a night. He hasn’t let them down, averaging 18.8 points, 5.6 rebounds, and 2.7 assists per contest. His usage rate of 24.4 percent has remained largely unchanged from last year, but it’s the second-highest on the team behind Harry Giles (26.7 percent). This game could be a shootout with Hield right in the center of it all.
Aaron Holiday, IND at LAL
FanDuel = $4,100
DraftKings = $3,700
Holiday was awful against the Suns on Tuesday, going 1-for-6 from the field for two points and two assists across 15 minutes. Prior to that, he had averaged 13.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, and two assists across four games with Oladipo out. There is certainly risk involved with putting Holiday into your entry, but it might be one worth taking based on his price. Of note, he is only eligible at shooting guard on FanDuel as he is listed at point guard on DraftKings.
Bojan Bogdanovic, IND at LAL
FanDuel = $5,300
DraftKings = $5,300
If you’re looking for an efficient scorer, look no further than Bogdanovic. His 19.2 percent usage rate is nothing to write home about, but he’s shooting 54.2 percent from the field and 53.5 percent from behind the arc. Strangely enough, he is shooting a career-low 79 percent from the charity stripe, but he’s still averaging 15.6 points per game. He’s taken on more offensive responsibilities with Oladipo out, making him another Pacer to target Thursday.
Doug McDermott, IND at LAL
FanDuel = $3,900
DraftKings = $3,500
McDermott has not been able to live up to the hype of being the 11th-overall pick in the 2014 Draft and is now on his fifth team. He’s mostly a three-point specialist, shooting 40.5 percent from behind the arc for his career. Normally he doesn’t get many shot attempts, but he’s been more involved due to the absence of Oladipo. Across his last five games, McDermott is actually averaging 13.8 points. At near the minimum price on both sites, McDermott could provide some value in tournament play.
Serge Ibaka, TOR vs. GS
FanDuel = $6,000
DraftKings = $5,500
With the Warriors lack of size up front, this would appear to be a game in which Ibaka will receive significantly more playing time than Jonas Valanciunas. Across five games in which Ibaka has logged at least 30 minutes, he is averaging 17.6 points, six rebounds, and 1.4 blocks. He’s not overly cheap, but this could still be a matchup to exploit.
Thaddeus Young, IND at LAL
FanDuel = $5,200
DraftKings = $4,500
Young had a minuscule 15.7 percent usage rate through his first eight games but has been more involved with an 18.1 percent usage rate across his last 13 contests. He’s another one of the players on the Pacers to see a bump in productivity with Oladipo out, averaging 11.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.6 steals across the last five games. His upside isn’t nearly as high as Ibaka’s, but he also provides a little more savings for your budget, leaving him in the discussion at power forward.
Willie Cauley-Stein, SAC vs. LAC
FanDuel = $6,800
DraftKings = $5,900
Cauley-Stein has hit a rough patch, averaging 9.4 points and 6.8 rebounds over his last five games. However, it should be noted that two of those contests were blowouts in which he logged 18 and 23 minutes, respectively. The Clippers have allowed the fifth-most DraftKings points per game and the eighth-most FanDuel points per game to opposing centers, so this might be just what the doctor ordered to get Cauley-Stein back on track.
Boban Marjanovic, LAC at SAC
FanDuel = $4,700
DraftKings = $3,500
Marcin Gortat (back) was a late scratch for Wednesday’s game against the Suns, opening up a spot start for Marjanovic. He recorded 12 points and 12 rebounds and is now averaging nine points and nine rebounds across four starts this season. He’s clearly not going to log as many minutes as Montrezl Harrell even if he starts Thursday, but Gortat being out again would make Marjanvic a great option in tournament play.
NBA Fantasy Basketball Schedule Analysis for Week 22
It’s important to know the intricacies of the NBA schedule to gain an advantage over your opponent in a head-to-head fantasy league as starting your best players might not always give you the best chance to win. Here are some moves you might want to consider for your team based on the week ahead.
Teams With The Most Games – 4 Games Each
Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Clippers, New Orleans Pelicans, Oklahoma City Thunder, Portland Trail Blazers, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs, Toronto Raptors
It’s crunch time in the fantasy playoffs, but only eight teams can give you an edge by playing four games each this week. If you’re dealing with injuries or need a boost for your squad, consider adding the players below who are still available in the majority of leagues.
Terry Rozier, Boston Celtics
The Celtics don’t play four games this week, but Rozier is still someone to consider adding with three games on the schedule. Not only is Jaylen Brown (concussion) likely out for most, if not all, of this week, but Kyrie Irving (knee) also left Sunday’s game against the Pacers and did not return. From the sound of Irving after the game, he is likely going to miss some time. With the Celtics cruising towards the playoffs, it makes a lot of sense for them to take a cautious approach with their best player. Rozier should be in line for a ton of playing time this week, giving him a significant boost in value. In nine games that Rozier has logged at least 30 minutes this season, he is averaging 17.1 points, 6.8 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 3.1 three-pointers. He’s still available in 61% of Yahoo! leagues and could be a difference maker when it matters the most.
Montrezl Harrell, Los Angeles Clippers
Harrell is coming on strong down the stretch, averaging 17.8 points and 4.2 rebounds through five games in March. He doesn’t provide many assists or blocks, but he’s been stellar from the field, shooting 63.3% this season. That’s no fluke either as he is shooting 64.2% from the field for his career. With Danilo Gallinari (hand) out again this week, that frees up more minutes up front for the Clippers. If you need a big man in your fantasy playoffs, Harrell is still available in 68% of Yahoo! leagues.
Corey Brewer, Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder have lacked depth all season and didn’t make any moves at the trade deadline, but they did manage to bring in Brewer after he was bought out by the Lakers. He’s started and played at least 28 minutes in back-to-back games, averaging 14.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, one steal and two three-pointers. In his four games this week, two are against bad teams in the Hawks and Kings and the other is against the Clippers, who play at the sixth-fastest pace (101.2 possessions per game) in the league. He should provide value with points, three’s and steals with the extra game this week and is still available in 97% of Yahoo! leagues. He’s likely not someone to consider in standard size leagues, but if you play in a deep league, Brewer might be someone to target on waivers.
Teams With The Fewest Games – 3 Games Each
Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Hornets, Chicago Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Dallas Mavericks, Denver Nuggets, Detroit Pistons, Golden State Warriors, Indiana Pacers, Los Angeles Lakers, Memphis Grizzlies, Miami Heat, Milwaukee Bucks, Minnesota Timberwolves, New York Knicks, Orlando Magic, Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns, Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards
Outside of the eight teams with four games each, the rest of the league all plays three games each during Week 22. Although the difference isn’t as drastic as it has been in previous weeks, you should still consider benching the players below.
Kyrie Irving, Boston Celtics
After playing just 16 minutes Sunday due to a sore left knee, Irving said it’s an issue he’s been dealing with for the last week and that he might need some additional rest. The Celtics don’t play again until Wednesday, but it seems likely that Irving is going to miss some time. While his uncertainty comes at an inopportune time for those in the fantasy playoffs, it might be too much of a risk to put him into your lineup this week.
Brandon Ingram, Los Angeles Lakers
Ingram has made major strides in his second season in the league but has missed the last five games with a groin injury. The Lakers announced Sunday that Ingram won’t play Tuesday or Wednesday either, leaving him to play just one game this week best case scenario. Keep him anchored to your bench with the hope that he can return for Week 23.
Thaddeus Young, Indiana Pacers
Young is struggling mightily right now, averaging only 5.8 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 0.5 assists through six games in March. He’s averaging 33 minutes per game on the season overall but may be starting to lose playing time, logging just 23 minutes in back-to-backs contests. Two of his three opponents this week are the Raptors and Wizards, both teams he has not played well against this season. Young has been a productive player throughout the season, but his recent struggles make him too much of a risk.
NBA Daily Fantasy Basketball Sleepers for 2/2/18
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Ricky Rubio, UTA at PHO
FanDuel = $5,900
DraftKings = $6,200
Rubio’s first season with the Jazz has been a struggle, resulting in him averaging a career-low 5.0 assists per game. His overall numbers lately have been better though, averaging 13.2 points, 6.0 rebounds, 6.5 assists and 1.2 steals in his last six games. Friday brings an excellent matchup against the Suns who play at the third-fastest pace (102.1 possessions per game) and allow the most points per game (111.8) in the league. You shouldn’t expect Rubio to put up a ton of points, but he can contribute enough across the board to provide value.
De’Aaron Fox, SAC vs. GS
FanDuel = $5,900
DraftKings = $5,900
Fox had possibly his best month of the season in January, averaging 14.1 points, 2.2 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 1.1 steals and 1.2 three-pointers in 14 games. It’s no coincidence that he averaged 30 minutes per game during the month, which is at least three minutes more per contest than any of the previous three months. With the Kings declaring they are going to give their young players more minutes, this is a trend that should continue for Fox down the stretch. With added opportunities to produce against a Warriors team that plays at the second-fastest pace (102.4) in the league Friday, Fox is worth consideration for your entry.
Nicolas Batum, CHA vs. IND
FanDuel = $6,100
DraftKings = $6,400
Batum has always had the ability to contribute excellent all-around numbers, but he’s struggled to adjust to an elbow injury and the addition of Dwight Howard for much of this season. However, he’s showing signs of coming out of his funk, even posting a triple-double Wednesday against the Hawks. He also played well against these same Pacers on Monday, scoring 22 points to go along with four rebounds, two assists, and five three-pointers. He’s played at least 34 minutes in three straight games, which is great news considering he’s more of a stat compiler as opposed to excelling in any one category. His price is climbing, but it’s still low enough to make him a viable option Friday.
Tony Snell, MIL vs. NY
FanDuel = $4,000
DraftKings = #3,700
This could be an ugly game for the Bucks. Eric Bledsoe (ankle) was unable to play Thursday against the Timberwolves and Malcolm Brogdon (quad) also suffered an injury that should keep him out Friday at the very least. To make matters worse, Giannis Antetokounmpo twisted his ankle late in the game. If all three players are ruled out Friday, Snell is going to see a significant increase in playing time. Even if Bledsoe is able to return, Snell should play a lot if both Brogdon and Giannis can’t take the floor. Keep an eye on the Bucks’ injury updates leading up to this game because even though Snell is not a great offensive player, the added minutes alone can give him value at this dirt cheap price.
DeMarre Carroll, BKN vs. LAL
FanDuel = $5,800
DraftKings = $5,800
The Nets will continue to be thin up front Friday with Ronda Hollis-Jefferson (groin) still out. In the last three games that Hollis-Jefferson has missed, Carroll is averaging 13.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.7 three-pointers per contest. He doesn’t have a ton of scoring upside, but he does have a favorable matchup against the Lakers who play at the fastest pace (103.2) and are tied for the third-most points allowed per game (110.3) in the league. At this reasonable price, Carroll is worth consideration.
Josh Jackson, PHO vs. UTA
FanDuel = $5,300
DraftKings = $5,200
Jackson is starting to see more consistent playing time, logging at least 28 minutes in three of the last four games. He’s made the most of his opportunity, averaging 19.7 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.3 three-pointers in those three contests. The Suns just lost Isaiah Canaan (ankle) for the season, which should also help free up some minutes for Jackson. He has excellent upside, making him someone to strongly consider for your entry.
Thaddeus Young, IND at CHA
FanDuel = $6,200
DraftKings = $5,700
Young is getting plenty of playing time for the Pacers, logging at least 35 minutes in seven of his last nine games. He doesn’t always score a lot, but he has managed to produce at least 16 points in three of his last five games. He’s also provided a boost in value with his defensive contributions, recording at least two steals in seven of his last eight games. The Hornets don’t have much depth at power forward with Marvin Williams (ankle) out, leaving Young with an opportunity to provide value Friday.
John Henson, MIL vs. NY
FanDuel = $5,500
DraftKings = $4,800
Henson doesn’t put up crazy numbers, but the Bucks have very little talent at center, leaving him with extended playing time. He’s not only scored at least 10 points in seven straight games, but he is also averaging 6.4 rebounds during that stretch. The Knicks have a lot of size up front, likely leaving Henson with another significant role Friday. His upside isn’t that high, but that doesn’t mean he’s not someone to consider at this cheap price. Of note, Henson is only power forward eligible on FanDuel as he is eligible only at center on DraftKings.
Julius Randle, LAL at BKN
FanDuel = $6,600
DraftKings = $6,700
Randle enters Friday averaging 18.4 points, 10.2 rebounds, and 3.0 assists in his last five games. Brook Lopez has logged 15 minutes or less in three of those five contests, leaving Randle with added playing time. Randle has the third-highest usage rate (24.7%) on the team, so the added playing time is significant for his upside. The Nets allow the most points per game on both FanDuel and DraftKings to opposing centers, so don’t hesitate to play Randle.
Jahlil Okafor, BKN vs. LAL
FanDuel = $4,000
DraftKings = $3,800
After playing at least 24 minutes in back-to-back games, Okafor took a back seat to Jarrett Allen on Wednesday, playing just 14 minutes. Although Allen played well in that game, he too has been inconsistent this season. Okafor actually has a 20.5% usage rate since being traded to the Nets, so he does have upside when he gets playing time. It’s tough to go with a player in an uncertain role like Okafor’s, but he might be worth the risk if you are looking for a really cheap center.