It’s Saturday! Time to crack open a cold one (beer, soda, V8 juice, whichever), plop on the sofa, and tinker with your DFS line-ups. Last night there was hardly any value, and rostering a player priced around $11,000 was practically debilitating. The same case can’t be made for tonight, as an 8-game slate presents us with tons of proven value to counteract the elite. Let’s jump right into my positional breakdown in the NBA Daily Plays.
Ricky Rubio ($8100 FD, $7900 DK, $5100 Aces): I recognize that I’m a huge Rubio homer, but he couldn’t be in a better spot tonight. He’ll take the court in a high-scoring match-up against Damian Lillard, who sacrifices his defense for his niche on offense. Ricky has consistently hit value, and his scoring has majorly improved, as he has only dipped below double-digits once over his past eight outings. Playing Rubio will also give you exposure to the latest hammer game on the slate, which is always a plus.
Dennis Schroder ($5000 FD, $4500 DK, $3950 Aces): There really isn’t a better value play on the board tonight than Schroder. He has been counted on greatly by the Hawks over his past three, logging an average of 29 minutes over that span. Factor in that he is averaging over 1 FPT/minute as well, and Schroder has been an absolute stud. He’ll get plenty of playing time in a blowout vs. the Sixers, and I’ll be rostering him in every single line-up.
James Harden ($11,000 FD, $10,500 DK, $7350 Aces): The Beard is back! After putting up some disappointing fantasy lines in accordance with his high price tag, he stunned the Pistons with a triple-double. He’s ravaged the Nuggets this season, putting up an average of 55+ FPTs. Normally I’d be wary of a blow-out, but Denver looks much improved after firing Coach Shaw, as they displayed in a close game vs. the reigning champion Spurs last night. Harden is the only player I find worth spending upwards of 11k on tonight.
Arron Afflalo ($4500 FD, $4100 DK, $4450 Aces): Due to an unfortunate season-ending injury for starting Blazers guard Wesley Matthews, recently-acquired Arron Afflalo is expected to start tonight vs. the Timberwolves. Afflalo was hindered by a terrible Nuggets team, but he was capable of putting up huge fantasy outings, including a 34-point game vs. this same Minnesota team earlier in the season. With Matthews sidelined, Portland will give Afflalo the green light, and he should have no problem hitting value tonight.
LeBron James ($11200 FD, $10500 DK, $7350 Aces): I’ll never try to talk someone out of playing LeBron, especially lately, as he’s been absolutely ravaging opposing defenses. He’ll have a good chance to hit 60+ FPTS tonight in prime match-up vs. the Suns, who don’t have an answer for The King on defense. My only worry is turnovers, as the Suns play at a very fast pace and LeBron has struggled to hang onto the ball lately. If you want to go contrarian tonight, LeBron is your man, as a lot of people will be paying up for Harden.
Nic Batum ($6200 FD, $6200 DK, $4900 Aces): It’s hard to find any dependable value at small forward tonight (shocker), so I’ll be featuring a player is who is mid-priced in this spot. Batum has been en fuego as of late, putting up a healthy amount of points and cleaning up the boards. His co-wingman Wesley Matthews is out for the season, and the Blazers will have no choice but to heavily rely on their proven small forward.
Kenneth Faried ($6100 FD, $6100 DK, $4900 Aces): Normally I wouldn’t hesitate recommending Anthony Davis in this spot, but his match-up against Memphis is tough, and the Grizzlies have made him look human in every match-up this season. Instead, I’ll drop down 5K and endorse a guy who has played well above his price tag lately. Kenneth Faried is no longer encaged by Coach Brian Shaw; he has found his inner manimal, and thrashed through his imprisonment. He’s easily double-doubled over his past three outings, and has a prime match-up tonight against a Rockets team that struggles to defend the four. Continue to ride Faried until his price catches up to his production.
Ersan Illysova ($4500 FD, $4700 DK, $3950 Aces): Ghostface Illyah! Any Bucks fan will tell you that Illysova has been one of their most dependable players as of late, and he’s been just as dependable for the DFS players who have rostered him. He may not put up mind-boggling numbers, but you can’t wag a finger at his ability to put up seven times his value consistently. Whether he’s starting or not, Illysova gets his minutes, and his match-up vs. the Wizards is quite favorable, as they’ve given up an average of 44.4 FPTS vs. power forwards over their last five games.
Marcin Gorat ($6300 FD, $6100 DK, $4750 Aces): Don’t look now, but Gortat has been on quite the tear. Coach Randy Wittman has thrown a ton of minutes Gortat’s way, and the center has made it his worthwhile, as his work on the boards recently has been insane. I’ve been wary of playing the Polish Hammer due to his tendencies to cause buyer’s remorse, but it just isn’t a wise decision to stay off of him while he’s this hot.