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Plays of the Day
Value: Matt Barnes logged 36 minutes as a starter last Monday and he should see steady run against an athletic young Thunder team tonight that is on the second half of a B2B set. OKC is ranked 21st in opponents 3PT shooting (.355%) and giving up the third-most FPPG (21.86) to opposing SFs this season.
Fade: If you can find a way to pay up for Russell Westbrook tonight, then more power to you, but he’s extremely expensive on DK and he faces a Kings team that’s been much better defensively with new HC Dave Joerger calling the shots.
Games to Target
- Golden State Warriors (-17) hosting Los Angeles Lakers (Over/Under = 228.5)
- Houston Rockets (-4) hosting Toronto Raptors (Over/Under = 216.5)
Steph Curry (GSW) vs. LAL DK:$8,900/FD:$8,800
The Lakers are young enough to bounce back quickly on the second half of a B2B set, but their guards have to be feeling a bit tired after chasing Russell Westbrook in a narrow win last night. With D'Angelo Russell (knee) ruled out tonight, slow veteran Jose Calderon will have to start on Curry and the Warriors could get their superstar going early. He's been relatively quiet this year aside from a five-game stretch in which he caught fire from beyond the arc, which coincidentally occurred right after he went 0-for-10 from deep in a loss to these Lakers. Can you say, revenge?
Tim Frazier (NOP) vs. MIN DK:$5,200/FD:$5,400
Playing like a man possessed, or at least a man who doesn’t want to lose his spot in the rotation, Frazier led the Pelicans to a 20-point lead in the first half and kept his foot on the gas with Anthony Davis (knee) in the locker room for most of a blowout win over the Hawks. The Brow could return tonight, but his potential absence would increase the value of everyone on the Pelicans and dramatically increase Frazier’s usage. Since Jrue Holiday returned to action, Frazier’s numbers have actually increased (16 PPG, 10 APG) over 3 appearances and he should be productive once again with the Pelicans hosting a Wolves team that is ranked 22nd in defensive rating and allows an above average 22.62 PPG to opposing PGs this season.
Jose Calderon ($3000/$3500) managed to hold his own against Westbrook last night and he should start again for the Lakers. At the stone minimum, it’s worth hoping he can stay on the court against Curry and the Warriors.
Jamal Murray ($3500/$3800) is more of an exciting tournament play than Jameer Nelson ($3700/$3600) but both guards are looking at a steady role off the bench, with the rookie a better candidate for production on 0 days rest.
James Harden (HOU) vs. TOR: DK:$11,700/FD:$11,600
I’ll take Harden over Westbrook at a price drop on DK given the fact that Westy looked shaky throughout a loss against the Lakers last night and only saved his DFS outing with a string of improbable threes in the fourth quarter. Harden has been as steady as anything in the NBA this season with a double double in 13-of-14 appearances (he went 33-9-7 in blowout win over the 76ers) and a league-best average of 12.4 APG. He’s facing a Raptors team that is playing with more pace this year and allowing the most DK PPG to opposing PGs this season. Toronto lacks a true rim protector to stop Harden from getting to the rim and DeMar DeRozan will be far more focused on matching points than guarding The Beard, but most importantly, this game has a close line and a solid Over/Under, so it should provide the opportunity for Harden to flirt with another triple double.
Victor Oladipo (OKC) @ SAC: DK:$6,600/FD:$5,900
It's strange that it's taken this long for Oladipo to become a productive player in a new system, but he's figuring out how to play alongside Russell Westbrook. Much more of a secondary option than the departed Kevin Durant, Dipo is finishing when Westbrook looks for him and HC Billy Donovan has wisely made him the offensive focal point of the second unit. He's averaging 20.8 PPG, 6 RPG and 5.25 APG over his last four appearances and he draws a great matchup tonight against a Kings team that's struggled against opposing SGs over each of the last two seasons. Oladipo has had no trouble matching his production and actually sports his highest Usage Rate (24.6%) on 0 days rest throughout his career, while Westbrook might need a bit more rest after his heroic efforts last night.
Jordan Clarkson ($5200/$4900) might not start, but he’s going to finish for the Lakers if this game stays close and he’s certainly a better option than Calderon if they’re matching up with the Splash Bros. Tony Allen ($3300/$3900) is a great punt play with Memphis missing James Ennis and Chandler Parsons right now.
Brandon Knight ($4900/$4500) doesn’t appear to be good at basketball anymore, or he lacks confidence, but he’s going to get another chance to start with T.J. Warren (illness) out tonight.
LeBron James (CLE) vs. POR: DK:$9,500/FD:$9,800
While the peons fight for unimportant regular season wins in November, the King has sat idly on his throne awaiting his next game. In other words, the Cavs haven’t played since Friday (when LBJ logged just 28 minutes in a blowout win) while the Blazers just lost a close game at MSG last night. With LeBron, the situation is always critical, and those circumstances indicate that he should get a full slate of minutes if this game remains close. Portland (+11) is a serious underdog because Vegas is aware of this scheduling discrepancy, but the Blazers are 7th in PPG (107.9) while Lillard and McCollum are young enough to keep this game competitive with little rest. Portland is also dead last in defensive rating and 28th in PPG allowed (111.9), so James should rack up points and assists while he’s out there.
Wilson Chandler (DEN) @ UTA: DK:$5,500/FD:$5,900
Chandler remains under priced on both main DFS sites and he actually becomes cheaper on DK despite his consistency of late. The Nuggets badly need his scoring and he’s been averaging 20.76 PPG while attempting 16.8 field goals per game over his last 5 appearances. Those numbers include a solid 17-point outing against the Jazz that was diminished by a blowout win at home, but Utah is one of the toughest places to play in the NBA and the Nuggets (+4.5) are not expected to win at all this evening. Chandler makes for a very solid addition to cash game lineups and he has sneaky upside as the Nuggets primary scorer down the stretch.
Glenn Robinson III ($4700/$3700) struggled with his shot against the Warriors on Monday but he’ll remain a fantastic value if Paul George and C.J. Miles are out.
Vince Carter ($4100/$4300) is definitely worth a look with the Grizzlies extremely shorthanded at the SF position.
Blake Griffin (LAC) @ DAL: DK:$8,400/FD:$9,500
If this game were being played at Staples Center, the Clippers would not be worth consideration in tournaments because of a likely blowout, but right now they’re only 9.5-point favorites on the road. That bodes well for Griffin’s usage down the stretch against a Mavericks team that simply can’t stop strong scorers on the low block. Dallas has solid DvP numbers against PFs and centers, but that’s mostly a mirage, as the Mavs have been eviscerated by skilled big men such as Myles Turner, Kristaps Porzingis and even Serge Ibaka recently. Griffin is the most talented PF they’ve faced all year and if Dirk Nowitzki (achilles) is able to return tonight, it will only boost Blake’s matchup against an aging team that is no longer elite by any means.
Matt Barnes (SAC) vs. OKC: DK:$4,000/FD:$4,000 as SF
Despite only producing 13.5 DK points in a loss to the Raptors last Monday, Barnes logged 36 minutes as a starter, as HC Dave Joerger followed through on his promise to “go small” in the future. He should see steady run against an athletic young Thunder team tonight that is on the second half of a B2B set and might struggle to close out on shooters as a result. Facing Toronto is a tough spot for a role player, but OKC is ranked 21st in opponents 3PT shooting (.355%) and giving up the third-most FPPG (21.86) to opposing SFs this season. As long as the minutes are there for Barnes, he’ll have plenty of opportunities to meet or exceed value at this modest price tag.
Larry Nance Jr. ($4000/$3900) remains a solid punt play with Julius Randle (hip) banged up and he could log extra minutes in a potential blowout. Serge Ibaka ($5900/$6000) is a great mid-tier option to consider against the porous Suns defense.
If Anthony Davis (knee) sits, Terrence Jones ($5400/$5100) will become a very popular play, but he’s still worth a look after a strong effort last night.
Hassan Whiteside (MIA) @ DET: DK:$9,000/FD:$9,200
Once again, it’s tough to choose between Whiteside and Towns, as two of the best young big men in the NBA are playing on the same slate. Yet Whiteside’s matchup is slightly superior against a big center in Andre Drummond that is mostly clueless on the defensive end. Despite his solid rebounding numbers, Drummond’s Pistons are ranked 23rd in total rebounding and his poor low post defense is the main reason that Detroit gives up an above average 46.48 FPPG and 20.79 PPG to opposing centers this year. Whiteside has been ripping through all defenses while posting monstrous double doubles this year and the only threat to his value is foul trouble or random injury, but that seems less likely with Drummond lacking a post game on offense.
Clint Capela (HOU) vs. TOR: DK:$6,000/FD:$5,700
The most important quality from a young NBA player is knowing their role, which Capela is demonstrating to perfection. The Rockets new center is fitting in much better than Dwight Howard by simply rebounding, finishing on drop off passes, and catching lobs when the defense rotates onto James Harden. As a result, CC is averaging 13.8 PPG, 10.7 RPG, 2.3 BPG and 35.2 DK PPG over his last 6 appearances and his playing time continues to rise while he shows an improved stroke at the FT line. He’s much quicker than Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas, who seems to be hobbling after a solid start to the season, and that’s part of the reason why Toronto is giving up the seventh-most PPG (22.17) to opposing centers this year. Give Capela a look in any format as a mid-tier option in a good game to target.
You can pencil Mason Plumlee ($5500/$5300) in for 25-30 FPs just about every night. Al Jefferson ($3800/$3800) will be worth a look as a cheap cash game play if Myles Tuner (ankle) can’t go.
Alan Williams ($4200/$4100) got into early foul trouble against the Wizards but he should pay off his price tag in an easier matchup against the Magic tonight, as Tyson Chandler (personal) will not play once again.