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.
After last night's New York debacle, we can expect similar reporting and events like that down the stretch. As for tonight, DraftKings left out the two 10:30 games on their main slate. They are still included in the FanDuel slate. The Lakers-Wolves game will be a good source for fantasy points, as it is the fourth highest total on the night, and Minnesota is just -6.5 favorites. Brandon Ingram remains below $5,000 on FanDuel. While Minnesota has been tough on small forwards, if Ingram is playing 40 minutes, it doesn't matter. He is dealing with knee tendinitis, but is listed as probably. The backcourt is also in play. Shabazz Muhammed has seen 24, 24, 28, and 31 minutes over the last four games, scoring 20+ fantasy points in three of them. He has come close to 30 fantasy points in two of those. At $4,000 he is a solid plug and play.
John Wall missed today's shootaround with a migraine. If Wall misses tonight's game, which we will actually know before lock, we get a big bump for the secondary Washington players. Bradley Beal, Otto Porter, and Markieff Morris get a bump for starters, while Brandon Jennings would likely fill-in as the starter. The blowout concern was there already, but if Wall was to miss, they become safer high ceiling options.
Phoenix's rotation continues to popup in the value article, and tonight they will be missing even more names. T.J. Warren and Derrick Jones are set to miss tonight's game against Boston. Jarell Eddie and Jared Dudley will step up in the absence. Phoenix is already without Eric Bledsoe, Brandon Knight, and Ronnie Price. This leaves Devin Booker, Tyler Ulis, and Leandro Barbosa in the backcourt. Despite the blowout concerns, Phoenix will remain very shorthanded, with guys forced to see 30+ minutes, or close to it.
Nikola Mirotic and Ersan Ilysaova both carry better value over on FanDuel, but are playable on both sites. We have seen two sides of Mirotic this season, and even more so over the last week or so. He is coming off of a monster outing against Detroit, playing 39 minutes, shooting 12-15 from the field. Before that he totaled 26 and 17 minutes against Toronto and Utah, shooting 5-16. Granted those were tougher matchups, Mirotic runs hot and cold. He had a three game stretch before those two bad outings, hovering around 29 minutes, and put up 35+ fantasy points in two of three games. If Mirotic brings his rebounding game to the table, he will have a decent floor. Otherwise, we need him to get hot from the field. Ilyasova has been playing around 27 minutes in game filling in for Paul Millsap. Ilyasova crushed Portland, like most power forwards do, but then came back down to earth in his last two games. He has been above 20 fantasy points in each of the last two, but at $5,700 on DraftKings, I want a little more than 20 DK points. At $4,700 on FanDuel, that's more acceptable. Milwaukee ranks 17th against power forwards, and are bottom ten in rebounding. Ilyasova is playable tonight. With Atlanta missing Paul Millsap and Kent Bazemore, here are projected minutes for the bunch below.
Detroit came out and said Ish Smith is starting tonight. Smith has been the better of the point guards in Detroit, and should see 25+ minutes. If he can get 30, he can end up being a top value play on the night. I find him safe regardless. Orlando allows the eighth most fantasy points per game to opposing point guards. Richaun Holmes is still under $6,000, and might draw a ton of run if Jahlil Okafor sits out tonight. He seems more on the doubtful side. The Bulls have been tough on centers this season, and Holmes will draw a ton of ownership, given the ceiling he showed last time out when Okafor sat out. That was against Orlando though... He is a good tournament fade tonight at a heighten priced tag.