Daily fantasy basketball blows up on Monday night, as we get an intense 11-game NBA slate with a slew of stars hitting the hardwood.
Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, LeBron James and James Harden are just a few that grace a loaded slate, and all could be worth paying up for in NBA DFS contests.
The trick could be mixing the right studs with the right value plays if we want to win big tonight, so let’s see which NBA DFS value picks make the most sense at each position.
Note: We’ll be using FanDuel’s pricing for tonight’s slate, but value should be able to stretch across all DFS sites. In an effort to find the best bargains, we’ll also be restricting our value plays to $6k or below.
Point guard really isn’t the spot to save cash at tonight. Russell Westbrook leads the way as the guy with the most upside, but there is a litany of quality options with guys like John Wall, Stephen Curry, Kyle Lowry and Kyrie Irving, among others, waiting to be used.
If you’re going to drop down a bit, Dennis Schroder could work out. He’s been pretty reliable lately, scoring 25+ fantasy points in six straight games. He’ll get a fast-paced matchup at home against Westbrook, who gives way to a lot of DFS production.
Schroder often feels a little volatile, though, so I can understand wanting to drop a little further. Sergio Rodriguez could then become an option, as he’s under $5k, yet will continue to get a ton of run at home in a good matchup with a bad Denver defense.
Rodriguez topped 33 fantasy points last game and should have ample opportunity to shine with Jerryd Bayless already ruled out.
Harrison and Grant aren’t safe, but they save even more cash and both will start tonight. Grant can be serviceable and is the minimum price at FD.
With Rajon Rondo out, he’s a threat for around 30 minutes and a 12-4-4 line. Against the Blazers at home, he should have no problem exceeding salary expectations.
Harrison is more expensive and a little riskier, but he’s been starting in place of an injured Mike Conley and is going to get run. Memphis is beaten up across the board, so he should play a good amount and could provide value against the Pelicans.
Of this four-pack, Schroder offers the best floor and ceiling combination. He’s a solid second PG option on FD and he should help you pay up for an elite option, as well.
Shooting guard is loaded tonight, as James Harden, Giannis Antetokounmpo and DeMar DeRozan could all go off. It’s also a good position to dive down at, though, as there is a lot of interesting value.
Lou Williams is potentially going to be heavily owned, as he’s fresh off of an insane 40-point outing. Repeating that is extremely unlikely, however, so while he offers nice value, he isn’t necessarily a must-play option.
Ditto for Clarkson, but he’s fairly stable and with the news that Jose Calderon is out for a few weeks, he and Lou are locked into even bigger roles going forward. A date with a tough Utah defense could complicate matters, but both of these guys should at least meet salary expectations.
Will Barton might be a little more appealing, as he’s shredded (32 and 34 fantasy points) in his first two games back from injury. The run and role are excellent and he’ll face a bad Sixers defense. There’s not much to hate here, especially with Barton owning such a low price tag.
Eric Gordon is the same price and just as appealing, as Trevor Ariza may not suit up and Gordon is already a nightly threat to score 20+ points. His bench role can make him a little volatile, but he’s got a solid matchup at home against Boston. He should be a fine SG try.
Troy Daniels probably takes the cake at shooting guard right now, however, and may end up being very highly owned. He’s been absolutely killing it lately for a severely mangled Memphis roster, as he’s 19, 19 and 31 actual points in his last three contests.
Daniels could come crashing down to earth anytime, but he has a favorable matchup with New Orleans and is locked into a big role with so many guys being banged up for the Grizzlies. Considering how volatile some of these shooting guard value plays can be, we prefer Daniels tonight. You can pair two of these guys together, or use Daniels to try to pay up for Harden and the like.
Small forward feels weird tonight, as LeBron James just hasn’t been elite, Kevin Durant could be limited in a possible blowout win and Paul George could be tough to trust in the second game of a B2B set.
Needless to say, paying down for at least one SF spot makes a lot of sense tonight. Jae Crowder can start that narrative off, as he’s been more than serviceable since returning from an ankle injury.
Crowder does lack upside, but he could be in a groove more than usual against a bad Rockets defense. He’s got a strong floor, too, as he’s hit on at least 21+ fantasy points in his last six games.
If I’m thinking about using Crowder, though, I might as well pay even less for guys who have just as much (if not more) upside. Dekker and Ingram are young guys on the rise, and while they don’t possess Crowder’s safe floor, they cost less and could have big nights if all goes right.
Ingram is starting these days thanks to the Lakers being mangled and he’s getting insane run (34+ minutes in 5 of last 7 games). The production is hit or miss, but he’s also topped at least 21+ fantasy points in four games during that span.
While Ingram could be fine, it’s Dekker we really have our eye on tonight. Trevor Ariza is banged up and may not play, which could give way to Dekker starting. Dekker has logged 20+ minutes in his last three games, regardless, and has carved out a reliable role for the Rockets. He even poured in a career high 17 points in his last game:
He’s a GPP try even if Ariza suits up, but if he winds up starting, Dekker could log heavy run and have a nice shot at notching 30+ fantasy points.
Power forward is probably the main position to pay down at tonight. Anthony Davis is the obvious elite, but he is dealing with a foot issue and is probable to play. That’s a full range of possibilities, as he was actually awful against Memphis earlier this year and he could still either sit out or end up getting hurt during the game.
The Brow feels like an easy fade tonight, while Draymond Green and Kevin Love are really the only other power forwards we can feel remotely good about.
Because of that, saving at PF makes good sense. Taj Gibson and Trevor Booker don’t offer killer ceilings, but they’re both typically safe. Booker might be the better play, as his date with the Wizards is expected to be high-paced and close.
JaMychal Green looks like one of the better plays, though, as Zach Randolph is again out (personal) and Memphis is banged up in general. With no extra help around, Green should get plenty of shots and have a chance at a double-double.
Rando, Tank and Kieff are in the same boat, as value plays who can spare you to death or chase 30+ fantasy points. Morris feels like the play of that bunch, but you’re certainly playing with fire here.
Green is our play in this group, but it’s fair to say power forward is a dangerous position overall on this slate.
Center lacks an obvious elite play, but it still has a chalk play we can’t ignore: Joel Embiid. He still has a 28-minute restriction, but he’ll be at home against the Nuggets. He’s one of the easiest plays of the night.
Paying up at center seems silly with Embiid there, especially without any true elite options. Because of that, we can consider dropping down to someone like Plumdog, who has been ridiculously reliable lately. He isn’t a great scorer, but he’s been fantastic overall, as he’s found a way to top at least 23 fantasy points in 12 straight games.
Plumlee probably has one of the best floors at center right now, but you could throw caution to the wind and use Henson, who is a similar DFS play in terms of what he can do. He’s way cheaper, though, and has actually been really solid with 31+ fantasy points in three of his last four games.
The only issue with Henson is that he’ll be facing the Spurs, who defend well and have some stellar bigs. Henson needs easy buckets to dominate in NBA DFS and his run can be a little sporadic, so it will be interesting to see if he can take advantage here.
Overall, there figures to be plenty of value to try to take down a big daily fantasy basketball tournament tonight. Hopefully some of our favorite NBA DFS value picks work out for you and you can pair them up with the right studs. No matter which direction you go in tonight, we wish you luck!
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