Monday brings back all the goodness of daily fantasy basketball, while at the same time helping us forget the nightmare that was NFL DFS this past weekend.
The NBA comes back in full force tonight, too, with studs like Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant and DeMarcus Cousins all suiting up.
They’re the obvious daily fantasy basketball picks, however. Let’s run through each major position and see which NBA DFS value picks could be worth your time on Monday Night (using DraftKings pricing):
Derrick Rose – Knicks ($6k)
Dennis Schroder – Hawks ($5.5k)
There is a lot to like at point guard tonight, whether it’s way up to with Russell Westbrook or a more intermediate play like Isaiah Thomas. Even on a mild seven-game slate, the position is loaded.
Even so, you may want to use a cheaper option in at least one slot, and both Rose and Schroder look like solid plays that could help open up some salary across all sites.
Rose specifically has been hot, as he’s churned out 26+ fantasy points in six straight games, including a huge 48-point fantasy outing his last time out. Tonight he gets Westbrook and the Thunder at home, which is a nice, fast-paced matchup that should lead to plenty of DFS stats.
The same could be the case for a slightly more erratic Schroder, who can fill it up offensively and has done well to top 27+ fantasy points in three of his last four contests. He could be in for a solid outing tonight, as he’s lined up against defensive sieve, Stephen Curry.
Josh Richardson – Heat ($4.9k)
Jeremy Lamb – Hornets ($4.3k)
Rodney McGruder – Heat ($3.9k)
Kyle Korver – Hawks ($3.8k)
Troy Williams – Grizzlies ($3.6k)
Beyond DeMar DeRozan, shooting guard feels wide open tonight. He’s the only thing close to a stud (or even reliable), yet he could be a dud if the Raptors blow the Sixers out at home.
Even if you like DMR, of course, you still could have some need for value at SG, and these five options could provide that. Korver is a toss-in in a very up-tempo showdown with the Warriors, but he’s probably the most inconsistent guy you’ll find anywhere.
The top values are either Richardson or Lamb. Lamb’s value takes a serious hit if Nicolas Batum (questionable) suits up, but if not, we could hope to see the insane 18-point and 17-rebound production Lamb chipped in the other day.
Richardson hasn’t been that explosive, but he may not have a choice tonight. Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside are both iffy to face Boston, while Tyler Johnson, Dion Waiters and Justise Winslow have all been ruled out already.
Richardson seems destined to log 40 minutes and hoist a ton of shots tonight, but the same could be said for McGruder, who has logged 31+ minutes in three straight contests. Richardson is more talented, but McGruder has been able to score in double figures in all three of those games and is way cheaper.
Troy Williams also deserves a nod, as he got 35 minutes last game and found a way to score 18 actual points. Memphis is very banged up and may need his scoring with Zach Randolph (personal) out.
Jae Crowder – Celtics ($5.2k)
James Johnson – Heat ($4.5k)
Small forward is another strong position, so if you don’t need to pay down here, you probably shouldn’t. Kevin Durant might be a must-play, while Carmelo Anthony, Gordon Hayward and Rudy Gay all look like solid plays, as well.
Still, if you need to save, worse chances can be taken than Crowder, who when he gets his usual minutes is about as safe as it gets. He’s rounding into form since returning from a bad ankle sprain, too, having poured in 15 and 18 actual points in his last two games.
No Al Horford tonight could give Crowder some extra run in small ball lineups, as well, so this looks like a fine spot to try him out.
Johnson is a good amount cheaper and has logged 30+ minutes in each of his last three games. He lacks serious upside, but the Heat are dying right now and there is little reason to think his run will go away suddenly.
Frank Kaminsky – Hornets ($5.2k)
JaMychal Green – Grizzlies ($5k)
Amir Johnson – Celtics ($3k)
Power forward is really weak tonight. Kristaps Porzingis feels like the best play, while Draymond Green (ankle) might not be himself if he suits up.
This is by far the best position to punt at, making Frank the Tank and Green very appealing daily fantasy basketball value picks.
With Marvin Williams hurt, Kaminsky has seen heavy run and is constantly a double-double threat. Taking on Memphis on the road is a bad spot, while JaMychal Green has the better matchup on the other side. Tank is a sieve defensively and Green could be asked to score more with Zach Randolph out.
Lastly, there is Amir Johnson, who is the bare minimum on both DK and FD and could be asked to play a good amount with Al Horford sidelined tonight. Johnson can play the four or five effectively, so just pay attention to Boston’s starting lineup to see if he’s worth deploying.
Jahlil Okafor – 76ers ($5k)
Kelly Olynyk – Celtics ($3.7k)
Tyler Zeller – Celtics ($3k)
Center probably isn’t the best spot to punt, as DeMarcus Cousins is a stud and Hassan Whiteside and Karl-Anthony Towns should both be fine tries.
If you need extra value, however, Okafor and Olynyk both could pay off. Okafor could be set for a fine outing with a solid matchup against Jonas Valanciunas, while Joel Embiid isn’t around to soak up extra run.
Okafor is still handcuffed to a minutes limit, but if he can see 24-26 minutes, he could be a double-double threat.
Boston’s starting five might tell us who to use at center – if anyone. Right now Olynyk leads the way over Zeller, as he’s the better overall talent and can rebound, shoot three’s and score better, in general. Zeller is just as much of a double-double threat if he gets the start over Olynyk, however.
Overall, this feels like a good night to go with the stars and scrubs approach. Stacking guys like Russ, Curry and KD and then loading up with some of these value plays feels like a good way to build a GPP team.
Regardless of your daily fantasy basketball strategy, we wish you luck tonight.
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