Injuries continue to be theme slate after slate in the NBA for the past week or so. Tonight doesn’t get any different.
I mentioned the list of names Monday that were questionable or out coming into that night’s set of games, and it appears the list for tonight might be even longer.
All questionable: Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Jeff Teague, Ben Simmons, DeMar DeRozan, Kemba Walker, Victor Oladipo, Mario Chalmers, Allen Crabbe, Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Rudy Gay, Chandler Parsons, Frank Kaminsky, Enes Kanter, and if you care, Nene.
That’s a laundry list of players that will have an impact on this slate whether they play or sit. For that reason, I am staying away from anyone on a team that has a significant player that is questionable. For example, I would absolutely love Jimmy Butler tonight if Jeff Teague were to sit (also Tyus Jones of course), but if Teague plays, then my opinion changes a bit, especially since Jrue Holiday will be projected to guard Butler, not a horrible matchup, but Holiday is known for his above average defense.
Keep the injury news on your mind, some of which we may not even know before lock. Good luck tonight and be sure to follow me on Twitter @hotdogdailyDFS.
Analysis: Of course if a lot of the names above sit, there’s going to be value to choose from, but I will just wish Reggie Jackson doesn’t start for some reason to make this play look even better. But for now, let’s just pretend Ish will get his usual 18-20 minutes of run. Normally I like to play guys getting more minutes, but Ish has a lot of usage off the bench, and he’s in a very favorable matchup against the Suns. Phoenix is number 1 in fantasy points allowed to PGs and they are coming off a back-to-back. Detroit doesn’t really blow out anyone, but there could be a chance for some extra run for Ish should the Pistons get out to a hefty lead in the 3rd or 4th. Another factor that I makes me OK with Ish tonight is that Detroit is in a pace-up game as Phoenix is 3rd in overall pace. That means extra possessions and potential extra shots for Ish, who already puts up 8-10 shots a game. In other-pace up spots, Ish has put up more than 20 fantasy points in 4 of his last 5 tries, the lone being Cleveland a few nights ago when Detroit got run out of the building. I expect Detroit to be the bully tonight and Ish offers a relatively safe floor due to his shot attempts and usage in a super plus matchup.
Analysis: OK hear me out. This is four plays in one, but I am seriously going to use an OKC onslaught tonight in tournaments (and I think it’s even a viable cash game option). Russell Westbrook, Paul George, Carmelo Anthony and Steven Adams all have extremely favorable matchups tonight against Orlando. None of them have a guy that plays anything resembling defense except the shadow of Nikola Vucevic. PG13, Adams and Melo are all coming off underwhelming fantasy performances in a blowout of Dallas. The key here is Westbrook, who has 2 triple-doubles in his last five games, but in the three games he did not record one, he was off one assist each time. Westbrook has taken it to another level in the past five games. He’s playing like super usage Westbrook, but still has PG3, Melo and Adams, who have all met or exceeded value all at the same time at twice in these past five games. Orlando offers up all kinds of fantasy goodness here and playing all four is basically soaking up all of the fantasy stats and usage you can now that it appears these four guys are basically it on this team. Orlando is 6th in pace of play, and as far as fantasy points allowed are concerned, the Magic are 2nd against PGs, 5th against SGs, 10th against SFs, 5th against PFs and 2nd against centers. They need a 166.5 combined to make value. In their past 10, this quadruplet is averaging 154.2 DK fantasy points. In their past five? 161.2 and they had opponents such as Dallas, Detroit, and San Antonio. Last thing and I swear I am done here…usage rates for these guys: Westbrook – 34.4, PG13 – 27.1, Melo – 28.8 and Adams – 16.5. All are averaging at least a fantasy point per minute, except Adams who is at 0.91
Analysis: Regardless of what happens with value, DSJ is lock city in cash games tonight for me. Facing off against Brooklyn, this is a super pace-up spot for Dallas and with how bad each team has been playing, I like this game to stay close. It’s a chance for the Mavs to collect a win as well. As I stated with Ish, this is an opportunity for DSJ to get more shots up and more possessions for all other peripheral stats. DSJ has an insane 30% usage rate and with Brooklyn being so hobbled of late, I just don’t see a scenario, with price factored in, where DSJ fails. This is the biggest misprice of the slate, in my opinion due to the Nets ineptitude and being 4th overall in fantasy points allowed to PGs.
Analysis: Again, based on value that opens up, Beal may or may not enter my cash games. I think he’s in a prime bounceback spot after a complete dud last night against Minnesota, though he had to deal with Jimmy Butler defense. Now he gets J.J. Reddick defense and the 76ers, who are 2nd in overall fantasy points allowed to SGs. There are actually a lot of Wizards who were chalky last night that absolutely failed, but this is where we hop back on in a pace-up spot against the 76ers who might be without Ben Simmons. Beal is a usage monster when John Wall is on the shelf this season, racking up a 37% rate and averaging 1.20 fantasy points per minute.
Analysis: Copy and paste almost everything I said about DSJ and put it here for Barnes. The only difference is that the Nets are slightly worse against SFs this season than PGs. They allow the second most fantasy points to small forwards. Barnes has a 26% usage rate, and this is a significant pace up spot for the Mavs. I might put Barnes in cash with DSJ, use my OKC onslaught and take out PG13, saving him for my onslaught in tournies.