Daily fantasy basketball is back on Friday, and not a moment too soon. I don’t know about you, but NFL games and turkey wasn’t quite enough for me on Thanksgiving Day. Yeah, I missed the NBA pretty badly.
Luckily for me (and you!) the Association had a pretty good idea some of us were going through withdrawals and issued a ridiculous 12-game slate for Friday.
It’s a beautiful thing. You know what else is beautiful? Winning in daily fantasy basketball because a bunch of your sleepers panned out. That happened to yours truly this past Wednesday, and if you used some of our bargain buys we discussed two days ago, chances are you did pretty well, too.
Friday brings more value to the NBA DFS scene, so let’s hop into the player pool and see who may be worth mixing with some high-priced studs:
Note: All pricing from DraftKings.com and all players chosen at or under $6k.
PG: George Hill – Pacers ($6k), Derrick Rose – Bulls ($6k), Elfrid Payton – Magic ($6), Mo Williams – Cavs ($5.9k), Tony Parker – Spurs ($5.3k), Zach Lavine – Timberwolves ($4.8k) and Isaiah Canaan – 76ers ($3.9k)
Hill, Rose and Mo Williams are all back on the court for the second game tonight after returning from injuries on Wednesday. Both are a good price and represent solid value, as well three logged 30+ minutes in their first game back and offer 30+ fantasy point potential. Of the three Hill feels like the safest due to his versatile skill-set, but you should be fine with any of them tonight.
Parker is a mild step down in price and he’s been on fire, putting up 37+ fantasy points in each of his last two contests. He hasn’t dipped below 25 fantasy points in any of his last six games, either, and should take on more of the scoring load with both Manu Ginobili and Tim Duncan already out for Friday night.
Lavine is getting run at both guard spots right now so he is worth considering any way you look at it, but his value sees a major spark if Ricky Rubio is out. That’s probably the only way I personally use him, as he’ll have a clear shot at 30-35 fantasy points if he starts and mans the point all night.
Canaan is the best pure value of the night, as he’s logging heavy minutes at shooting guard with Nik Stauskas hurt. Canaan hasn’t disappointed in an expanded role, either, as he’s procuded 26+ fantasy points in each of his last three contests. He’s a Sixer and he’ll be on the road against the Rockets, so he won’t be easy to trust, but keep in mind he’s been hot and he’ll be facing his former squad. There is a lot of value to be had here when you factor in the matchup, run and price.
SG: J.R. Smith – Cavs ($5.3k), Evan Turner – Celtics ($5k), Danny Green – Spurs ($4.5k) and Gerald Green – Heat ($3.3k)
Shooting guard isn’t really the spot to take a dive tonight, but if you do make sure you stick to Smith, Turner and the Green brothers (cousins, not brothers). Smith could see a minor hit with Mo Williams and Matthew Dellavedova both back and healthy, but his scoring is still needed and he was fine last game with Mo back. I’m not overly worried, but the price is creeping up a bit and these other guys offer a little more value. The same goes for Turner, who obviously has a nice role with Marcus Smart out right now, but he’s no safer than the Green cousins.
Danny Green hasn’t worked for me even once all year. He randomly has huge block and steal games so I like to try him when his price is really low, but the one night I didn’t use him, he topped 30 fantasy points. There’s a chance he does that again tonight with the Spurs missing some guys and participating in an up-tempo game versus the Nuggets.
Gerald Green is probably the dive of the night if you’re not paying up for shooting guard. He started on Wednesday and scored 16 points in 38 minutes. His streaky nature does not guarantee that happens again, but he’ll probably draw another start and his scoring ability cannot be ignored at this low price.
SF: Marcus Morris – Pistons ($6k), Otto Porter – Wizards ($5.8k), Trevor Ariza – Rockets ($5.7k), C.J. Miles – Pacers ($5.2k), Robert Covington – 76ers ($5.1k) and Justise Winslow – Heat ($4k)
Morris, Porter and Ariza are three guys who aren’t expensive and get loads of run. There isn’t necessarily always safety in that, but minutes are pretty big when looking for value. I’m not handcuffing myself to either of them tonight, but I’ll consider them if I’m stuck somewhere at that price range.
Miles has been on a torrid run, including a crazy 32-point barrage the other night against the Wizards. This can’t keep up but he’s still a solid value for what he’s getting you and obviously has a pretty nice role with the Pacers right now. He now has three straight 30+ fantasy point outings, so use him at your own risk.
Winslow has to be thrown into this discussion just because Luol Deng has been ruled out. Again, Gerald Green is the winner here, but Winslow will see 26-30 minutes and does carry some upside.
The real pick at small forward continues to be Covey, who is fully back as a starter and is kind of crushing it. Keep in mind with all of our Sixers picks that, you know, they’re the freaking 76ers. There’s a reason why they’re all so cheap. That being said, Covington has produced 32+ fantasy points in three straight games and is probably the best offensive player Philly has right now. He might be due for a dud, but at this price you can still risk it.
PF: Tristan Thompson – Cavs ($6k), Nerlens Noel – 76ers ($5.8k), Nikola Mirotic – Bulls ($5.7k), Markieff Morris – Suns ($5.5k), Jabari Parker – Bucks ($4.5k), Darrell Arthur – Nuggets ($4k), David West – Spurs ($3.8k) and Boris Diaw – Spurs ($3.4k)
Thompson’s time as a value play is running out, both because Timofey Mozgov could return tonight and because his price is slowly ascending. I still like him if Mozzy remains out, but he’ll get his minutes slashed when he returns. That’d make him quite the gamble at this price. Just keep tabs on Mozzy’s availability or expected role and make the call.
Noel is a sick value right now, as he’s super talented and is seeing 30+ minutes per game. Granted, he’s been awful, but he can’t stay down forever and this is a guy that was routinely priced well over $7k earlier in the year. He can easily register a double-double and rack up the steals and blocks. Jahlil Okafor got into a fight recently and there’s a slim chance he sees some punishment. Even if he doesn’t, I like Noel here against Terrence Jones. Hopefully he can get back on track.
Mirotic and Morris are two more killer values, largely based off of their offensive ability and overall upside. Both are getting decent (albeit sometimes a little sporadic) run, but both can clean the glass and hit from outside. They’re a little risky, but at these low prices they’re worth testing out tonight.
Parker is just a solid value for a guy who starts and gets about 30 minutes of run. He’s not safe and he doesn’t have insane upside, but if his shot is falling and the Bucks aren’t getting killed, he’ll have a shot.
Diaw and West both should see a good bump in run with Tim Duncan out tonight. They face the sorry Nuggets and I’m probably using the one that starts. Staying with that matchup, Darrell Arthur is interesting IF Kenneth Faried is out. He might play and the Nuggets could get another big back. This is another reminder as to why keeping tabs on the latest news is one of the biggest things in DFS.
C: Marcin Gortat – Wizards ($5.4k), Nikola Jokic – Nuggets ($4.6k), Ian Mahinmi – Pacers ($4.5k) and Kosta Koufos – Kings ($4.5k)
Gortat continues to be a solid price when all he does is get you solid production. He rarely blows up anymore but the guy is almost a lock for 10-12 points and 5-6 rebounds. He’s been consistently hitting on 25+ fantasy points and for a value center, you can’t be mad about that. I’m not overly into him, but the reliability factor is nice.
Jokic and Koufos are completely dependent on some guys sitting tonight. Koufos was pretty darn good last game (30+ fantasy points) with Boogie out, so if DeMarcus Cousins (back, thigh) sits again, he’s very much in play. Jokic has been really solid as Denver’s starting center, too, but if Kenneth Faried and/or Joffrey Lauvegne return tonight (both might), you can’t use him. If one or both sit, though, he could be worth a shot with San Antonio a little depleted down low.
Mahinmi is basically a cheaper and less productive Gortat, as he’s getting 22-28 minutes per game and is pretty stable. He’s also not going to explode, but 22+ fantasy points is a fairly safe bet and if I use him at that price I’d be fine with it.
Remember, some of these value picks will absolutely pan out. It’s up to you to pick the right one and pair them with the right studs. Good luck in daily fantasy basketball tonight!
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