With guys like Russell Westbrook and James Harden dropping 60+ fantasy point games, they will be staples in the lineups for many of us. But... To grab those players, value is crucial in NBA, just like any other DFS sport. Value opens up through injuries, site pricing, and rotational changes. We are staying on top of the ever changing rotation, and injury news on a daily basis. Value plays will be given based on game type, and also mid-range options in comparison to the top-priced guys. Sometimes value doesn't mean a near punt price, but a few thousand dollar difference from a Stephen Curry.
Nicolas Batum was the bigger name popping up on the injury report this morning. He is dealing with migraines, and Jeremy Lamb would see a big bump in play if Batum was ruled out. In three games Batum has missed, Lamb has seen 30 minutes per game averaging 14-10-3. His usage takes a small hit, but it is still at 21.9% in those three games. I prefer Lamb over Marco Belinelli, who is just more of a scorer. As far as other cheap shooting guards go, Buddy Hield has played 30 and 37 minutes over the last two games. Over the last ten games, Hield is averaging 13-3-1, but is shooting 52% from the field.
Those names are on the cheaper side, but if you are looking for more of a balanced side. Evan Fournier and Gary Harris have a bit more of a floor, but you pay for it. Harris is averaging 27 fantasy points per game over the last ten games, and the Lakers rank 25th against opposing shooting guards. Harris is my preferred play, given the Nuggets have the top team total on the slate. Jameer Nelson is questionable for tonight's game, which would mean 30+ minutes for Jamal Murray, who is on Mike Malone's list for earning more minutes as the season goes on. Murray would be a plus value play against a bottom five defense against point guards.
The Lakers starting five is essentially all value plays, outside of D'Angelo Russell and Julius Randle, who fall into the mid-range category. Jordan Clarkson is coming off of a big night against the 76ers, and his ownership will rise with recency bias. Denver is one of the worst backcourt defenses in the league, so using Clarkson and Russell is encouraged in all formats. Brandon Ingram continues to stay on the cheaper side, but is more of a FanDuel play than a DraftKings play, with a near thousand dollar difference. Ivica Zubac drew the start last night, playing 18 minutes, however. He went 10 and 6, with four blocks. He is cheap, but minutes don't seem to be pushing north of 25, which is somewhat of an issue. If he can retain a strong FPPM, I don't mind him.
The Spurs are the next team playing with mostly value plays. Tony Parker and Dejounte Murray are already ruled out for tonight's game, which means Patty Mills will see 20+ minutes of action, and close to 30 if this one can stay close. With LaMarcus Aldridge out, David Lee will see a bump in minutes and usage when on the floor. Pau Gasol is more of a tournament play, who hasn't exactly seen the minutes lately. If Kawhi Leonard plays, he would become an elite pay-up option on the slate. If he sits, Kyle Anderson is worth a look.
Utah has already ruled out Derrick Favors, and Rudy Gobert is questionable for tonight's game. If Gobert was to sit, we would see guys like Trey Lyles pick up minutes, but I don't believe there is any sort of upside or use for them. Target elsewhere.