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Happy Monday everyone! We are kicking off this week with an eight-game slate loaded with storylines, injuries, and interesting games to watch. We have two games with totals projected over 220 points, a few games in the 210 range, and no games with totals under 200 points. The Cavaliers, Pacers, Knicks, Sixers, and Bucks all have team totals over 110 points, making them great teams to target tonight. The Warriors are shorthanded once again and Kevin Love could return tonight, which are the two things that headline the injury list, while Nic Batum, Rodney Hood, Brandon Ingram, Domantas Sabonis, several Bulls have already been ruled out for tonight's slate. Oh, and while we are here, Bam Adebayo is a free square on FanDuel tonight where he comes in at just $3,600.

Nikola Jokic, C, Denver Nuggets

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

34 107 4 46.3 21.22 46.95 46.31

DK Salary: $8,800 / FD Salary: $10,000

It looks like Jokic has broken out of the funk he was in earlier, potentially related to the return of Paul Millsap, as he has notched a triple-double in two of his last four games, a double-double in one of those games, and has scored at least 60 fantasy points in three of the last six games. He is back to being heavily involved as a scorer, with 20-plus points in two of the last four games, and double-digit field goal attempts in five of the last six, and has been stuffing the stat sheet with multiple blocks and steals in back-to-back games. He is averaging 52.5 fantasy points per game over the last six games, on 22 points and 10.5 rebounds, and torched the Heat to the tune of 51.5 fantasy points the last time he faced off against this Miami Heat team. While the Heat looks like a tough team on defense, and their pace could negatively effect Jokic, their lack of a true center tonight bodes well for Jokic. The Heat have already ruled Hassan Whiteside out for this game, meaning they will need Bam Adebayo and Kelly Olynyk to step up and defend Jokic, and without Whiteside, the Heat have been abused in the paint and on the glass. Over the last four games, Miami has allowed opponents to pull down an average of 45.5 rebounds per game, an increase on their 42.3 season average, and have seen their points in the paint allowed climb from 43.4 to 46. There are some great center options, like Marc Gasol, Joel Embiid, and Andre Drummond that will come in at higher ownership, and Jokic has a similar ceiling compared to them tonight.

Goran Dragic, PG, Miami Heat

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

33

109

26

48.2

24.46

33.33

32.67

DK Salary: $7,300 / FD Salary: $6,700

Opposite of Nikola Jokic tonight, we get to target another strong matchup for Goran Dragic. Dragic has been tough nail down from a fantasy perspective, as he has been extremely volatile, but he has been great over the last two games and gets another outstanding matchup against the Nuggets tonight. Dragic has played at least 30 minutes in three-straight games, has double-digit field goal attempts in those games, and has scored at least 20 points in each. He has been scorching hot from the floor recently, connecting 50.7 percent of his field goal attempts over the last five games, and has seen his usage rate climb to almost 31 percent with Wade and Whiteside off the floor. He is averaging 1.13 fantasy points per minute in that time, as well. The Nuggets have been a great matchup for point guards this season, ranking 26th in fantasy points allowed, and they struggle to defend against the pick-and-roll and spot-up shooters. Dragic is operating as the ball-handler in the pick-and-roll on 39.3 percent of his possessions, and averaging 6.2 points per game, and is spotting up on almost 15 percent of his possessions. Given Denver's struggles in defending the plays that Dragic does the majority of his scoring off, I think we can expect a good game out of him tonight.

Robert Covington, SF/PF, Philadelphia 76ers

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

30

115.25

28

48.1

14.51

27.73

27.40

DK Salary: $5,900 / FD Salary: $6,000

It has been an up-and-down season for Covington but he has bounced back lately, starting with his previous matchup against Charlotte, and finds himself in a great spot tonight. Covington has notched at least 30 fantasy points in three of his last four games, and four of his last six, and his shooting has been outstanding over that time. He has connected on 41.4 percent of his three-point attempts over the last five games, and 45.2 percent of his overall attempts, and has been a solid contributor on the boards, as well. Charlotte has struggled to defend against small forwards all season long, ranking 28th in fantasy points allowed, and opponents have torched them from beyond-the-arc to the tune of 37.5 percent this season. Charlotte is also one of the worst defense in the NBA against spot-up shooters, giving up 23.8 points per game on the play, ranking as a 20th percentile defense, and Covington is spotting up on 38 percent of his possessions this season. Covington's price has risen because of his recent performances but he is still cheap enough where he can easily reach value in tonight's excellent matchup.

Denzel Valentine, SG/SF, Chicago Bulls

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

34

106

23

42.09

19.32

30.84

29.66

DK Salary: $5,700 / FD Salary: $6,300

The shorthanded Chicago Bulls head to Madison Square Garden to take on the failing Knicks and Valentine is coming off the best game of his career against the Cavaliers. I expect that Valentine will be a very popular option tonight, which is fine, as he is still too cheap for his usage and production with this Bulls team. Chicago has already ruled out LaVine, Dunn, and Markkanen for tonight's game, and with those players off the floor, Valentine is averaging 1.14 fantasy points per minute with a 23.6 percent usage rate. His minutes will be secure tonight, as he should see in the mid to upper 30s against a terrible Knicks defense, and one that he can take advantage of tonight. The Knicks rank 23rd in fantasy points allowed to small forwards this season, allowing 42.09 per game, and they rank 29th in defensive efficiency over the last ten games. Over that span, the Knicks have allowed opposing small forwards to rack up 21.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 3.2 combined blocks and steals per game. They have allowed them to connect on 49 percent of overall attempts, including 38.6 percent from three, as well. They rank as a 13th percentile defense against spot-up shooters, allowed 24.5 points per game, and Valentine is spotting up on almost 25 percent of possessions this season. There will be a lot of great plays from the Chicago side of this game, and all of them will be popular, but this is a great spot to target them.

Darren Collison, PG, Indiana Pacers

Projected Minutes

Team Total

DvP

FPPG Allowed

Usage Rate

DK Projection

FD Projection

32

112

27

49.9

17.73

29.75

29.71

DK Salary: $4,800 / FD Salary: $5,700

Collison hasn't been inserted back into the starting lineup since returning from injury, although that could change soon, that doesn't really matter tonight. Collison has been a mixed bag since returning from injury but he was able to post an outstanding offensive outing a couple of games ago against the Raptors. He posted 22 points with four assists and two rebounds in that game, notching 34 fantasy points, and he could easily replicate that tonight against the Lakers. Some of his other performances, however, have not been as good, like his games against the Sixers and Wizards, but the matchup against LA is much better than both of those games. Collison has posted at least seven field goal attempts in four of his five games since returning and is shooting 55.3 percent from the floor, including 61.5 percent from beyond-the-arc, in those games. The Lakers rank 27th in fantasy points allowed to point guards this season, giving up over 49.9 per game, have ranked 21st in defensive efficiency to the position over the last ten games, and opposing point guards have connected on almost 48 percent of field goal attempts over that span. In addition to the matchup, Collison could see an even bigger boost in usage and production with Sabonis, and potentially Myles Turner, off the floor. With that duo out, Collison is averaging 1.06 fantasy points per minute with a 20 percent usage rate. I will be interested in Collison regardless of Turner's status, but if Turner were to be ruled out, he would become an even better option.



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