• Today’s slate features 10 games including the Thunder vs. the Pacers, two teams who were trade partners for one of the offseason’s biggest deals. Tonight there are a few teams coming off playing last night and as always back-to-backs are something to monitor but it really shouldn’t affect anyone this early in the year. Also follow me on twitter @awalia100. Let’s get started.

    Point Guards

    John Wall ($10,200 FD/DK) – Wizards center Marcin Gortat has already guaranteed that John Wall will torture Lonzo Ball for 48 minutes so if we take Gortat for his word Wall will be in for a big night. The Wizards are favored by only 6 points in a game with a high over/under of 226.5 so if Vegas has it right, we are looking at a fairly competitive, high scoring game which makes Wall my top point guard play of the night.

    D’Angelo Russell ($7,800 FD/DK)D’Angelo Russell hasn’t disappointed ever since Jeremy Lin’s injury which made him the unquestioned lead guard of a Nets team that plays at one of the fastest paces in the league. Russell has gone over 30 fantasy points in each game of the year and gets a Cavaliers team tonight that struggles on the defensive side and is fresh off giving up 112 points to the Chicago Bulls. This game has an over/under of 227.5 and should remain close enough for Russell to get his full allotment of minutes. This all hinges on whether or not Russell plays through his doubtful tag, however.

    Lonzo Ball ($7,400 FD, $7,000 DK) – Someone who may have something to say about Wall torturing him for 48 minutes is Lonzo Ball himself. As stated this game is expected to be high scoring which should allow Ball plenty of opportunities. Ball’s minutes, despite being a rookie, look to be locked in around the mid 30’s at least and has been a constant triple-double threat the first few games of the year and tonight should be no different.

    Dejounte Murray ($5,900 FD, $5,800 DK)Dejounte Murray has excelled in his second year taking over lead point duties in Tony Parker’s absence. Murray makes for a fine play if you need to go for a mid-level option due to his ability to fill up the stat sheet in different ways as he showed with his 15 rebound outing against the Raptors on Monday.

    Mike James ($4,300 FD, $4,400 DK)Mike James has taken over the starting point guard job with Eric Bledsoe being dismissed for the team. James will probably be one of the most popular plays due to his price and high usage rate. There is some risk with James as he will be facing a tough defensive-minded Jazz team but with Utah coming off a game last night and his cheap price, the risk with James is mitigated.

    Other good buys: Russell Westbrook ($10,800 FD, $11,400 DK), Stephen Curry ($9,400 FD, $8,700 DK), Kemba Walker ($8,100 FD, $7,700 DK), Ricky Rubio ($7,600 FD, $6,800 DK).

    Shooting Guards

    James Harden ($11,600 FD/DK)James Harden has been solid so far this year but he hasn’t had that fantasy outburst yet that he was so prone to last year. Tonight, that may change as he gets the 76ers in what should be a fun match-up. Vegas has this as a close game as the Rockets are favored by less than 4 points in a game that has a high over/under at 220 so this seems like a good game for Harden to break out and justify his high price.

    Victor Oladipo ($7,800 FD, $7,200 DK) – I’m all about narratives so I’m all in on a Victor Oladipo revenge game as he returns to OKC after being traded away by the Thunder for Paul George. However, you don’t need a narrative to justify playing Oladipo as he’s been great so far in his role on his new team. The Pacers are coming off a blowout of the Timberwolves last night in which Oladipo played only 28 minutes so he should be fresh and ready to build off his great play to start the year.

    Jeremy Lamb ($5,600 FD/DK)Jeremy Lamb is in a good spot at home tonight against a Denver team that plays at a high pace. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist will return tonight but will be on a minutes restriction so Lamb should still be able to get enough minutes to allow him to hit value at his mid-level price.

    Donovan Mitchell ($4,100 FD, $3,800) – Rodney Hood has a calf injury and Joe Ingles is dealing with an illness. If both were to miss tonight’s game against the Suns, Donovan Mitchell would make for a great play against what may be the worst defensive team in the league. Mitchell dropped 19 points on the Clippers last night in Hood’s absence but carries risk as most line-ups lock at 7pm and the Jazz don’t pay until 10pm so we may not have any news on Hood or Ingles until after line-ups lock.

    J.R. Smith ($3,900 FD, $4,000 DK)J.R. Smith is purely a dart throw for me and an option only if you need to go relatively cheap at the position. There is definitely risk attached to Smith but my recommendation of him is based off Smith getting 32 minutes last night and the Nets ability to give up big fantasy nights to even the most obscure players.

    Other good buys: Bradley Beal ($8,000 FD, $7,300 DK), Devin Booker ($7,300 FD, $6,900 DK), Eric Gordon ($6,700 FD, $6,000 DK), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope ($5,500 FD, $4,700 DK).

    Small Forwards

    LeBron James ($10,700 FD, $10,400 DK)LeBron James at point guard for the foreseeable future is going to be fun to watch, especially for those who play him in DFS. James controlled the ball for a lot of the game anyway but now it’s going to be for all of the game which should help his assist numbers. He looked like he tweaked his ankle last night but has already been declared a go for tonight in a golden match up with the Nets.

    Paul George ($8,700 FD, $8,000 DK) – Like I said I’m all about the narratives. Paul George faces off against his old team tonight and will be looking to show he’s better off without them. However, narratives aside George has put up good fantasy numbers through the first three games and the Pacers are a high pace team so George is a good bet to hit value tonight.

    Josh Richardson ($6,300 FD, $5,400 DK) – Dion Waiters is questionable for tonight and if he sits then Josh Richardson should be the main beneficiary on the Heat. Richardson filled up the stat sheet last time he played with 21 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks and 2 steals.

    DeMarre Carroll ($5,800 FD, $4,200 DK)DeMarre Carroll has been a great addition to the Nets through the first four games of the season. He has hit the 30 point mark in three straight games while also scoring 17 points in each of the last three games so if you’re looking for a safe play at the mid-level, Carroll is your guy.

    Shabazz Muhammad ($3,000 FD/DK) – With Jimmy Butler being declared out again tonight, Shabazz Muhammad will enter the starting line-up for the second night in a row and makes for a good play. Listed at the minimum on both sites, Muhammad should get close to 30 minutes like he did against the Pacers last night which makes him a good play despite his limited upside.

    Other good buys: Kevin Durant ($10,700 FD, $10,400 DK), Ben Simmons ($8,800 DK), Kelly Oubre ($5,000 FD, $4,200 DK), Allen Crabbe ($4,800 FD, $4,900 DK).

    Power Forwards

    LaMarcus Aldridge ($8,900 FD, $8,800 DK)LaMarcus Aldridge has shown so far that the changes coach Popovich has made to make him more comfortable are working. Tonight, Aldridge gets a Heat team without Hassan Whiteside so look for him to continue his hot start as the offensive center piece.

    Ben Simmons ($8,800 FD) – It was just a week ago where I wrote up Ben Simmons as a good play at his $5,600 FanDuel price and now even though he’s over $3,000 more expensive, Simmons still makes for a great play tonight in a great match-up with the Rockets. This should be a high scoring game and Simmons should be able to keep building off his early season success. Simmons is listed as PG/SF eligible on DraftKings for the same price where he is a recommended play as well.

    Otto Porter ($7,500 FD, $5,900 DK)Otto Porter gets a great match-up against the Lakers tonight where I think pretty much every Wizard getting heavy minutes can make for a good play. Porter is one of my favorite plays of the night, especially his DraftKings price. Porter is averaging nine rebounds per game and is always a candidate to score over 20 points. Throw in his defensive stats and a game with a high over/under Porter makes for an excellent play.

    Kyle Kuzma ($5,100 FD, $4,700 DK) – On the other side of that match-up is Kyle Kuzma, who has parlayed his strong summer league and preseason into an important role. He has gotten 28 and 30 minutes the past two games and has done well with his opportunity, hitting 15 and 20 points respectively in the two games. There’s risk here given how his minutes aren’t guaranteed but Kuzma has shown so far his summer league and preseason performance was no fluke.

    Domantas Sabonis ($4,800 FD, $5,000 DK) – Another player in a revenge spot is Domantas Sabonis but just like with Oladipo and George, you don’t need a narrative to play Sabonis. With Tuner slated to miss another game Sabonis will again get extended run and he’s done well with his added opportunity so far with Turner out, hitting a double-double in each of the last two games.

    Other good buys: Carmelo Anthony ($7,600 FD, $7,100 DK), James Johnson ($6,100 FD, $6,500 DK), Kelly Olynyk ($5,500 FD, $5,600 DK), Marquese Chriss ($4,300 FD, $4,100 DK).

    Centers

    Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,100 FD, $8,600 DK)Karl-Anthony Towns is the highest priced center on FanDuel and the second highest on DraftKings for good reason as he is as consistent as you can get in fantasy. Without Jimmy Butler for the second night in a row look for Towns to assert himself against another premier big man in Andre Drummond.

    Joel Embiid ($8,600 FD, $8,000 DK) – Tonight, Joel Embiid will be back playing in front of the home crown in Philadelphia. Even with Embiid still at a minutes restriction which places him under 30 minutes per game, Embiid is still putting up fantasy numbers that warrant a write up. Tonight, he gets a Rockets team without Nene in a game in which Embiid has plenty of blow up potential.

    Dwight Howard ($7,900 FD, $7,100 DK)Dwight Howard has been on a rebounding tear to star the year. He’s averaging over 17 rebounds per game through his first three games and will look to continue his dominance on the glass against Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets tonight.

    Jakob Poeltl ($4,900 FD, $4,500 DK)Jakob Poeltl may be in for some serious minutes tonight as both Jonas Valanciunas and Lucas Nogueira have been declared out. Poeltl has stepped up when he’s gotten the opportunity as he went for a double-double in his last game in 25 minutes. The risk of a blowout here doesn’t apply to him as he still should be able to get minutes no matter what the score is.

    Other good buys: Marc Gasol ($8,800 FD, $7,800 DK), Rudy Gobert ($8,500 FD, $7,500 DK), Kevin Love ($8,300 FD, $7,600 DK), Steven Adams ($6,900 FD, $5,800 DK), Marcin Gortat ($6,100 FD, $5,500 DK).

Fantasy News

  • Dwight Howard - C - Washington Wizards

    Dwight Howard will return to Washington D.C. and start on-court work on Wednesday.

    Dwight has been recovering from November spine surgery, and it's good to see him progressing. He's still a few steps away from playing, and with the injuries he's been dealing with this season, it's hard to see him being useful outside of deep free throw punt teams. More likely, the greatest impact he'll have is eventually taking a few minutes from Thomas Bryant and Bobby Portis.

    Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

  • Henry Ellenson - F - New York Knicks

    Henry Ellenson plans to sign a 10-day contract with the Knicks.

    Ellenson has shown promise at times, but he has never really put together any fantasy-relevant stretches. Leave him on the wire for now, but it's not impossible to imagine a scenario where the tanking Knicks are missing or sitting a couple bigs, giving Ellenson some decent run.

    Source: Shams Charania on Twitter

  • Clint Capela - C - Houston Rockets

    Clint Capela (thumb) returned to practice on Tuesday with no limitations, which could determine his playing status for Thursday's game against the Lakers.

    Capela underwent surgery on January 17 and was initially given a 4-to-6 week timetable, so this would be at the early end of a return. The fact that he is returning to practice without any limitations is a great sign for owners, meaning a return is imminent. Watch out for the Rockets injury report on Wednesday.

    Source: Jonathan Feigen on Twitter

  • Jodie Meeks - G - Toronto Raptors

    Jodie Meeks is signing a 10-day contract with the Raptors, per Adrian Wojnarowski.

    Meeks was waived by the Bucks following the conclusion of his 25-game suspension for violating the league's anti-drug program. He hasn't played since last season with Washington and is unlikely to see much action with Toronto. He'll give the team some extra shooting when he does see the floor.

    Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

  • Jared Dudley - F - Brooklyn Nets

    Jared Dudley (left hamstring strain) was scheduled to be re-evaluated on Tuesday.

    Dudley has already made it known that he's planning to return right out of the All-Star break, so unless today's checkup revealed some kind of further issue we're expecting him to be ready for Brooklyn's two games this week. His biggest fantasy impact will be taking minutes from more intriguing players.

    Source: Greg Logan on Twitter

  • Caris LeVert - G - Brooklyn Nets

    Caris LeVert will undergo an evaluation from the Nets medical staff on Tuesday.

    There's no sign of any setbacks from LeVert but the team will obviously keep a close eye on him after he's returned from a dislocated foot. This shouldn't be anything more than routine maintenance, so fantasy owners don't need to worry about it.

    Source: Greg Logan on Twitter

  • Ray Spalding - F - Phoenix Suns

    The Suns are expected to sign Ray Spalding to a 10-day contract.

    Spalding was the 56th pick in last summer's draft but only appeared in one NBA game this season with the Mavs. He was waived at the trade deadline with Dallas taking on one more player than they sent away, and will look to make an impression in a crowded Phoenix rotation. His college numbers (12.3 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.5 steals and 1.7 blocks in 27.7 minutes per game) make him a name to file away in deep dynasty leagues.

    Source: Gina Mizell on Twitter

  • MarShon Brooks - G - Chicago Bulls

    Marshon Brooks has agreed to terms with the Guangdong Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association, according to Sportando.

    Brooks played 29 games for the Grizzlies this season averaging 6.6 points and he is expected to replace Malcolm Delaney. Leave him on the waiver wire.

    Source: Sportando

  • Kristaps Porzingis - F/C - Dallas Mavericks

    Mark Cuban said that Kristaps Porzingis won't play this season, even if the Mavs somehow are able to make the playoffs.

    The Mavs want to put their world-class training staff, led by Casey Smith, to work, strengthening Porzingis’ body the rest of this season and throughout the summer to hopefully prevent similar injuries in the future. And after all, given the amount of money the Mavs could be committing to KP this summer, a max salary of $158 million, there is no need to risk something happening to him in a season where making the playoffs seems unlikely. Kristaps remains a great stash in redraft leagues.

    Source: 247sports.com

  • LeBron James - F - Los Angeles Lakers

    Joe Vardon of The Athletic is reporting that the Lakers are "somehow a little concerned" about LeBron James.

    LeBron hasn’t been showing the same speed or overall movement lately and the team is concerned that he’s not fully recovered from the groin injury that cost him to miss a career-high 18 games. The Lakers are in the 10th place in the Western Conference, three games behind the Clippers for the eighth and final playoff spot and they will need LeBron to be healthy for the rest of the season. James is averaging 26.8 points, 8.6 rebounds and 7.6 assists in 35 minutes per game, while his shooting percentage (51 percent), 3-point percentage (35 percent) and free-throw percentage (68 percent) are all down from last season. He is still returning borderline top-15 value in standard leagues and owners can only hope he doesn’t suffer a setback.

    Source: The Athletic