Premium Members
Login Register

Well it seems we were unable to escape the absurd injury bug yesterday but hopefully we can do so tonight, as this looks to be an outstanding seven game slate. While there are no games currently projected over 220 points, most of the games look to be fairly close with exception to the Atlanta Hawks at Cavaliers. There is a plethora of injuries to pay close attention to, with Kevin Love, John Collins, John Wall, Robert Covington, Joel Embiid being a few of the major names.

Kristaps Porzingis, PF/C, New York Knicks

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

32 108.25 20 43.6 34 38.63 39.21

DK Salary: $8,500 / FD Salary: $9,700

I was finally able to hit a big Porzingis game on Sunday and I am going back to the well today with the Knicks facing off against the Lakers. He has been fairly disappointing lately, with exception to Sunday's outing against the Hawks, but it seems he has put his ankle injury behind him and is ready to should the load for this team. He has posted a 34 percent usage rate on the season, while accounting for almost 21 percent of the teams' total points scored this season, and ranks second on the team in rebounding chances per game at 11.7. He ranks second on the team, behind Enes Kanter, on paint touches per game with 5.1, leads the tea, in post-ups per game at 8.4, and averages .929 points per paint touch. I will get to why those numbers are important in just a moment, but it should also be noted that the Knicks are without Tim Hardaway Jr. for tonight's contest, which gives Porzingis a rather large boost. With THJ off the floor this season, Porzingis is averaging a massive 36.2 percent usage rate and 1.09 fantasy points per minute.

Okay, now on to why I mentioned rebounding, post touches, and post ups. First off, the Lakers are allowing the sixth-most rebounds per game to opponents on the season. 45.8, and with Enes Kanter bothered by a hip injury, we could see a few extra rebounds fall to Porzingis tonight. In addition to their terrible rebounding, the Lakers are allowing a league-high 49.6 points in the paint per game, while allowing opponents to shoot 65 percent at the rim, 38 percent in the paint, and 40.8 percent on mid-range attempts. Porzingis ranks in the 90th percentile on shots attempted in the paint and mid-range this season with 153, and he is connecting on 50 percent of those attempts. He ranks second on the team in post-up efficiency, averaging 1.02 points per possession, which is in the 79th percentile of the NBA. He should be able to have his way with Kuzma, Nance, Randle, and whatever other defenders the Lakers attempt to throw his way tonight, and with the Knicks back home at MSG, I expect him to have a monster performance.

Kevin Love, PF/C, Cleveland Cavaliers

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

30

-

27

46.1

30.26

37.80

36.60

DK Salary: $8,200 / FD Salary: $8,000

I am hesitant to recommend Kevin Love after getting burned by his late scratch on Saturday, but his matchup against the Hawks is just too good to ignore. While Love is listed as questionable at the moment, he is expected to suit up, however, his status should be monitored throughout the afternoon. He is coming into tonight on the heels of a solid stretch of games, averaging 41.3 DraftKings points in 28.3 minutes over his last five contests, including a 49 fantasy point outing against the Hawks back on November 30th. He has scored at least 20 real points in five of the last 10 games and has done so playing limited minutes. In addition to the scoring, Love has double-digit rebounds in 7 of the last 10 games and has at least 12 field-goal attempts in 9 of those 10 games.

The Hawks could get John Collins back but that isn't going to help their terrible defense tonight. The Hawks have surrendered 108.7 points per game on the season and have allowed opponents to shoot almost 48 percent from the floor. Opponents are shooting 36.6 percent from beyond-the-arc against them and have connected on a staggering 39.4 percent of corner three attempts this season. The Hawks rank dead last in the NBA in defensive efficiency against opposing front courts on the season, giving up 67.5 points, 33.4 rebounds, and 12.8 assists to both the power forward and center position. They are getting crushed on post-up possessions, allowing .90 points per possession with a 46.8 percent score frequency, the sixth-worst mark in the NBA. Love is posting up on 20.2 percent of his possessions this season, scoring 1.05 points per play, and should be able to bully a weak Atlanta frontcourt tonight.

Tobias Harris, SF/PF, Detroit Pistons

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

33

108.25

26

50.23

21.09

32.89

32.17

DK Salary: $6,600 / FD Salary: $7,300

Harris has been relatively quiet after a scorching start to the season but that should change tonight against the Nuggets. We can expect this to be a paced-up contest for the Pistons against a terrible defense, which is the perfect matchup to target Harris. Over his past six games, Harris has averaged 35.1 minutes per game, but has seen at least 38 minutes in three of those games, and has at least 14 field-goal attempts in four of those games. He has shot 46.3 percent from the floor over that span, including an eye-popping 41.5 percent from beyond-the-arc. Harris is leading the Pistons in touches per game at 77.1 per game which goes to show how heavily involved he is in this offense.

Everything lines up for Tobias to be in a prime spot tonight, as the Nuggets defense has been terrible this season. They have surrendered 106.9 points per game on the season, but that number has climbed to 112 points per game in the month of December as they have struggled with injuries to Millsap, Chandler, and Jokic. They have given up 50.23 fantasy points per game to power forwards this season, the fifth highest mark in the NBA, and have allowed 46.6 points in the paint per game. Opponents have shot 40.7 percent in the paint, 44.6 percent in the mid-range, and 38.6 percent on above-the-break threes against them, and those are three areas where Harris does the majority of his damage. He ranks in the 90th percentile among all forwards with 26 percent of his shots coming in the short mid-range (generally the painted area) and 32 percent of his attempts have come on above-the-break threes where he is connecting on 47 percent of attempts. Harris is attempting a spot-up shot on 33.3 percent of possessions this season, averaging 6.7 points per game, 1.24 points per play, and ranks in the 88th percentile among all NBA players in efficiency on spot-ups, and the Nuggets have allowed 1.09 points per play on spot-ups this season, the second-highest mark in the NBA, and should get lit up tonight.

Buddy Hield, SG/SF, Sacramento Kings

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

24

108

27

44.6

23.92

21.35

20.35

DK Salary: $5,600 / FD Salary: $5,500

Anytime the Phoenix Suns are on a slate you can pretty much guarantee all kinds of fantasy goodness from the team going against them but unfortunately tonight that team is the Kings, so figuring out who the good performances will come from is a little more difficult than usual. Sure, we can expect Zach Randolph to continue producing at a high clip, but he can't be the only one can he? Well, I am here to tell you that Buddy Hield is another one of the players that we can count on for a big game tonight in this prime matchup between two poor defenses. Hield has been providing a much needed offensive boost off the bench for the Kings as of late, and has averaged 25.6 fantasy points in 24.5 minutes over his last five games. He has eclipsed 30 fantasy points in three of the last the four games and has at least 12 field goal attempts in all of those four games. He is averaging 13.4 points, four rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 1.2 steals off the bench and has posted a 27.7 percent usage rate in his bench role this season. The return of Willie Cauley-Stein will put a slight damper on his usage, as he has a 25.2 percent usage rate when he shares the floor with Willie, but that doesn't concern me at all.

The Suns continue to be one of the best matchups on the board just about every position, and they have allowed 115 points per game on the season. They have allowed opponents to shoot 38 percent from beyond-the-arc, and 47.1 percent from the floor, and have surrendered over 44 fantasy points per game to shooting guards. They rank 20th in the NBA in defensive efficiency to shooting guards, allowing 24.1 points, five rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game to the position on the season, but have fallen to 27th over the last 10 games.

Mike James, PG, Phoenix Suns

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

19

211

12

44.4

27.35

18.42

18.18

DK Salary: $4,300 / FD Salary: $4,500

The point guard carousel continues to go round-and-round in Phoenix, and predicting which one will have a big game each night is tough, as it seems that head coach Jay Triano wants to ride the hot hand on a nightly basis. James was the hot hand in the Suns' last game, posting 25 points on 8-of-16 shooting in 29 minutes against the Spurs. He was coming off two games in which he saw less than 20 minutes prior to that outing, which goes to show how volatile the situation at point guard is. With Devin Booker out, however, the Suns are struggling offensively and will need someone that create their own shots which leads me to believe that James will continue to see the majority of minutes over Tyler Ulis here. James has the highest usage rate on the team, without Booker and Bledsoe, at 34.9 percent and averages 1.23 DraftKings fantasy points per minute. The Suns have played a total of three games without Booker this season, and James has notched totals of 42.75, 8.75, and 36.5 DraftKings points in those three games.

The Kings are allowing only 105.5 points per game to opponents this season, which is low, but part of that is because they play at a fairly slow pace. In a game where the Suns should be able to force them to push the pace, I expect them to give up a decent amount of points. They have allowed opponents to shoot 63.2 percent at the rim this season, 46.5 percent in the paint, and 38.5 percent on above-the-break threes. I highlight those three specific areas because those are the three areas where James is attempting most of his shots this season. He is taking 31 percent of his shots at the rim, where he is shooting a fairly dreadful 54 percent, 39 percent of his attempts have come in the mid-range, and 27 percent of his attempts are above-the-break threes. While James is not a terribly efficient ball handler in the pick-and-roll, averaging .82 points per possession, he should be able to attack the Kings pick-and-roll weakness tonight, as well. After finally getting signed to a full NBA contract, I expect James to start getting more run in this offense and I want to keep using him while his salary is low.



Comments
No comments.