Hello out there!

It’s time for another Value Index for DFS NBA purposes and again we have a 6-game slate on tap for us tonight.

Only one more full slate of games before basketball takes a breather on its regular season and we have to find other avenues for playing daily fantasy sports.

I will take in a round of golf and a lap around Daytona this weekend, for fun, so I highly suggest doing the same to get your fix in.

But as for present day, let’s dive into tonight’s slate swiftly and quickly!

O/U Spread Pace
Miami Heat 28
Toronto Raptors 206.5 -7.5 10

Injury News

Out: Kelly Olynyk

Miami: Toronto is going to be a hard out for the Heat tonight on the road. The Raptors are one of the best teams under their home lights, so despite Miami’s defensive prowess, Toronto has the ability to put this game away in the 3rd quarter. But it also wouldn’t be surprising if Miami fought all the way to the end. But with that thought in mind, who do we like for DFS purposes? Toronto also is a great defensive team almost across the board…almost. Enter Hassan Whiteside, who can eat Jonas Valanciunas and the Raptors’ front court for breakfast. In on outing this year, Whiteside scored nearly 40 fantasy points, with a double-double, in less than 30 minutes. With no Kelly Olynyk tonight, Whiteside’s minutes should be more secure and he’s still priced like a guy who is seeing inconsistent minutes. The remaining Heat players really are more tournament options and maybe even just guys you toss in a game stack. James Johnson (revenge game), Goran Dragic, Josh Richardson, Justise Winslow and Bam Adebayo should all play the minutes, but they are a tough sell in this matchup.

Toronto: I gave up on rostering Toronto players early on in the season. And only not rostering the ghost of Jonas has burned me less than a handful of times. DeMar DeRozan is always steady and more of a cash play than a tournament option. Kyle Lowry hasn’t been the consistent point guard we have liked this season. Serge Ibaka has had some nice runs, but his minutes are inconsistent. And then there’s all of the ancillary wing players – Normal Powell, C.J. Miles, OG Anunby, Pascal Siakam, etc. Through a dart at a dart board and hope you hit a bullseye. Fred VanVleet and Delon Wright? Again, darts.

Must Plays: Hassan Whiteside
Bubble Plays: Goran Dragic, Serge Ibaka, DeMar DeRozan, Kyle Lowry
Value Plays: None

O/U Spread Pace
Cleveland Cavaliers X X 13
Oklahoma City Thunder X X 18

Injury News

Questionable: Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony

Cleveland: This is the grand salami of the slate. And DFS will hinge around one player – and it’s not LeBron James. The new-look Cavs are 2-0 since trading their entire team away, so maybe things are looking up. This is a premium test for Cleveland 2.0, so with the all-star break looming, this team needs as much time to gel on the court as possible. So where do we go? Well, LeBron is a good start. Here’s how the team spread out the minutes in their first time together: George Hill – 21 minutes,  Jordan Clarkson – 23 minutes, Larry Nance Jr. – 21 minutes, Rodney Hood – 19 minutes, Cedi Osman – 29 minutes, Jeff Green – 17 minutes, Kyle Korver – 16 minutes, J.R. Smith – 29 minutes, Tristan Thompson – 27 minutes. I imagine these minutes will change and fluctuate as the right set of starters is determined, so for now, I think this is about what you should expect the next few games. Luckily, many of these guys are cheap and you can feel comfortable taking a shot on one in a tournament.

Oklahoma City: Russell Westbrook practiced Monday, a better sign that he might suit up against LeBron. But the ASB is nearing, and it would be no surprise to see the Thunder sit Westbrook. If he plays, you play him. If he doesn’t, you play Paul George and Raymond Felton (and yes, even Carmelo if he plays. He always gets up for games against LeBron). Steven Adams has locked in usage and minutes no matter who is or isn’t playing, a solid cash game play night in and night out.

Must Plays: LeBron James, Russell Westbrook (If active), Paul George (if Westbrook inactive)
Bubble Plays: Carmelo Anthony (if active), Steven Adams, any of the new Cavs.
Value Plays: None

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