December 7, 2018, 2:45 pm
It is Friday, December 7, but you would think it was Black Friday with all of discounts and savings we have on tonight’s slate. We have 10 games to look at, but as always, by looking at the spreads and game totals we can narrow our focus onto the ones that matter most. We have a lot of injuries on this slate to provide us with more than enough value to allow us to jam in some of these studs with high game totals. Where’s the value and who are the studs? Let’s jump right into some of my favorite plays of the night and find out.
Stephen Curry vs. Bucks $10,000 – Following an explosion on Wednesday night I think it’s safe to go back to the well. I was all over Curry in this first matchup, in fact he was my top play in out first ever “Beat the Expert” contest. Unfortunately, Curry got hurt and because of that I got smoked. This is the game of the night and with Curry healthy I am thinking about it in the same way I did last time. Both he and Durant are too cheap in this matchup and to be honest, every Warrior is in play. Curry is my favorite and likely the one I will have the most exposure too.
Kemba Walker vs. Nuggets $8,000 –He’s been fairly quiet as of late, but let’s not forget the Kemba Walker who was priced over $9,400 at times. He’s at home were he tends to play better and draws a superb matchup against Jamal Murray. This is the cheapest we’ve seen Kemba in a long time and it may be time to jump aboard before we see the hike again.
Reggie Jackson vs. Sixers $5,300 – The news of Ish Smith tearing his adductor secures Jackson’s minutes for the time being. Langston Galloway is expected to handle to backup duties, but Galloway is not your traditional point guard who sets up an offense like Smith would. On top of the Smith news, we got wind that Joel Embiid would be ruled out due to rest leaving the Sixers’ paint vulnerable. We have loads of value to spend up today, but if you want to flirt with the mid-tier I wouldn’t mind taking a chance on Jackson.
Eric Bledsoe vs. Warriors $7,200 – This game has a massive total and the pace at which it will be played should be absurd. I already mentioned wanting to get some exposure to some Warriors tonight and any time I am doing that I look to run it back with someone on the other side. Bledsoe has been playing fantastically as of late and he tends to thrive in these faster-paced games. It’s a good idea to have exposure to this game and even though we have loads of value I can’t see myself paying up for both Giannis and a high-priced Warrior.
Klay Thompson vs. Bucks $6,500 – It is no secret that this will be a popular game. It’s the last game of the night and it should provide tons of fantasy goodness given the high pace and game total. Shooting guards all season have crushed the Bucks and Thompson is one of the best. He hung 38.8 DK points on them in the first meeting and that was a game that got out of hand. He is always a GPP play and if you are choosing to spend your top dollar in another game you could still look Thompson’s way for exposure.
Josh Hart vs. Spurs $3,600 – Brandon Ingram has already been ruled out of the next two games with an ankle sprain and Rajon Rondo was cleared for contact, but not yet cleared to play. This puts Hart in position to be the backup ball handler and this should allow him to squeak out a few more minutes. I do not love this matchup, be we know Hart can produce value in multiple ways, including rebounding, as a guard.
Jimmy Butler vs. Pistons $7,400 – Joel Embiid has already been ruled out early due to rest. This opens up massive usage and value across the board for the Sixers. Butler tends to see the biggest spike in usage, coming in with a whopping 33.2 percent. He wasn’t someone I was on before the news, but it is going to be hard to ignore him now. Ben Simmons ($8,300) is also a fantastic play and averaging 1.34 DK points per minute with Joel Embiid out and much of the load will be on their shoulders tonight. Both of these guys would be priced $1,500 more had DK known about Embiid resting prior to the pricing.
Juancho Hernangomez vs. Hornets $4,400 – DraftKings refuses to price up Hernangomez. It is now three straight games that he has put up 25 DK points and at $4,400 that is just too cheap. We have seen his 40 DK point upside and is worth a look in both cash and GPP’s. Would it really be one of Friday articles if I didn’t mention him?
JaMychal Green vs. Pelicans $4,500 – This is a game I am looking to get some exposure to. Memphis had been playing fantastic defense, but on the other side the Pelicans are bleeding points and generally the teams facing them see their implied team total rise dramatically. Well, tonight that is the case for the Grizzlies and while all of the major players are in play, I am looking to find some savings. It is now back-to-back games where Green has scored at least 30 DK points and he has played at least 25 minutes in each of the least four games. The Pelicans play big, so Green’s minutes should be safe, but we also have to factor in that Jaren Jackson Jr. could always get into foul trouble, boosting Green’s value even more. I wouldn’t mind looking to the way of Mike Conley ($8,400) or Marc Gasol ($8,100) either. Those positions are loaded today, but they will both likely fly under the radar in what is a fantastic matchup on paper.
Kyle Kuzma vs. Spurs $6,800 –Do I love the price tag? No, but with Brandon Ingram already ruled out we have to take into account who that will benefit. Kuzma’s usage rate without Rondo and Ingram on the floor is 25.3 percent and he should be second on the team in shot attempts behind LeBron James. He is small forward eligible as well, which helps because our power forward spot is basically cemented.
Kelly Olynyk vs. Suns $4,000 – Hassan Whiteside has already been ruled out and Olynyk will be of the main beneficiaries. Bam Adebayo will likely draw the start and ownership, but Olynyk will still see a bump and has shown his ability to produce big numbers in even limited minutes. Both of these guys are in play and I could see situations where you could play both in the same lineup.
Amir Johnson vs. Pistons $3,000 – He is stone cold minimum salary and we know Joel Embiid is ruled out. We have a ton of value at power forward today and another option has been soft-tossed to us. The minutes are likely to be split up between Johnson and Mike Muscala, but without Embiid on floor Johnson is averaging 1.04 DK points per minutes (0.24 more than Muscala) and is $800 cheaper.
Andre Drummond vs. Sixers $8,600 – I was on the complete opposite side of the coin earlier today. I was all over Embiid and fading Drummond. It was a matchup Embiid has taken advantage of and Drummond has struggled in. But now all of that gets thrown out of the window with Embiid ruled out. Box score chasers will see how Blake Griffin has dominated over Drummond in the previous matchups and likely turn there, but that was all due to Embiid and with the rivalry these two have I imagine Drummond putting in a little extra effort and smiling at Embiid following a dunk tonight. It may be the chalkiest prop bet ever, but I want those odds whatever they may be.
Tristan Thompson vs. Kings $7,300 – Hopefully the price tag scares a few people away, but it should actually be slightly higher. Over the last three games Thompson is averaging 46 DK points per game and we know the Kings have plenty of big bodies to use to secure Thompson’s playing time. This should be one of the faster-paced games on the slate and getting exposure to those games generally equals profits, but there aren’t a lot of players in Cavaliers’ uniforms that I am feeling overly confident about playing lately so Thompson will be my exposure.
Bam Adebayo vs. Suns $4,200 – Don’t think about this one too much and take your free space. Hassan Whiteside has been ruled out due to the birth of his child and we should see Adebayo have his way with the center minutes. Last night the Suns started Richaun Holmes over Deandre Ayton at center. We would much rather see Adebayo match up against Ayton, but regardless of who starts he is a great, chalky play at this price. It helps that both he and Olynyk are both power forward eligible as well.
Just want to give a big thank you again to everyone who competed and followed this weeks “Beat the Expert” contest and give a big shout out to HI Kona Coffee for being the awesome sponsor they are and hooking up our second place winner with a sweet coffee bundle. We filled this thing up faster than ever and it is growing at an exponential rate. It is all due to our listeners, followers and readers and seeing those who have never dabbled in DFS having a great time is why we do it. We will be dropping another one this coming Wednesday, so make sure you reserve a seat before it fills.
As always if you have any questions or comments you could find me on Twitter @MikeApotria. Good Luck and take a contest down for Hoop Ball.
March 22, 2019, 4:47 pmJimmer Fredette - G - Phoenix Suns
Jimmer Fredette is available to make his Suns debut on Saturday vs. the Kings.
While we should see Fredette on the court, the Suns don’t want to push him or put too much on his plate so soon after signing with the team. The standard caveat is that we’re in the fantasy silly season and Fredette is probably excited to reestablish his game in the NBA after playing the last three seasons for the Chinese Basketball Association. He averaged 36.9 points, 5.6 rebounds and 5.3 assists this season for the Shanghai Sharks.
Source: Kevin Zimmerman on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 4:41 pmTaj Gibson - F - Minnesota Timberwolves
Taj Gibson (left calf strain) is being listed as questionable to play on Saturday vs. the Grizzlies.
Gibson missed his last contest with the calf strain and though he’s a trooper, there’s a chance the Wolves hold him out or shut him down seeing as they’re out of the playoff hunt. If that ends up the reality, Gorgui Dieng would make a nice add though the Wolves don’t have a great schedule going forward.
Source: Wolves PR on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 4:38 pmAron Baynes - F/C - Boston Celtics
The MRI results on Aron Baynes’ ankle were positive and he hasn’t been ruled out for Sunday’s game.
We assume this means Baynes won’t play on Saturday which would put Daniel Theis next in line get minutes off the bench. We should have an update after Saturday’s shootaround.
Source: Gary Washburn on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 4:35 pmTyler Johnson - G - Phoenix Suns
Tyler Johnson (sore right knee) is questionable to play the Kings on Saturday.
If Johnson can’t go, De’Anthony Melton should get another start. Melton has a high steals rate, but his upside is severely capped starting alongside usage monster Devin Booker.
Source: Gina Mizell on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 4:32 pmJosh Jackson - F - Phoenix Suns
Josh Jackson (ankle sprain) is questionable to play on Saturday vs. the Kings.
It’s pretty amazing that Jackson hasn’t already been ruled out but it wouldn’t be surprising if he ended up missing this one. Mikal Bridges and Troy Daniels would be the prime beneficiaries with Bridges being the preferred play by far.
Source: Gina Mizell on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 3:14 pmGordon Hayward - F - Boston Celtics
Gordon Hayward missed Friday's practice as he continues to go through concussion protocol and he may return on Saturday vs. the Spurs.
The entire season from Hayward has been a total headache, with injury inconsistency, low minutes and generally very disappointing production. He may come back to play this weekend, but it seems difficult to trust him at this crucial time.
Source: Gary Washburn on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 2:37 pmJosh Hart - G - Los Angeles Lakers
Josh Hart will sit out against the Nets on Friday with a right knee issue.
Now that the Lakers have virtually nothing to play for, there's no reason for Hart to push it and get on the court at risk of aggravation. Still, LeBron James plans to return for this one, so the upticks for Kentavious Caldwell-Pope or Reggie Bullock may be short-lived.
Source: Mike Trudell on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 2:35 pmLeBron James - F - Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James will play in Friday's game against the Nets.
The trainwreck season continues for the Lakers, but at least for this one James will suit up and pile up stats. It dings a few of the Lakers' role players, maybe cutting into the Alex Caruso hype train.
Source: Mike Trudell on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 1:55 pmOtto Porter Jr. - F - Chicago Bulls
Otto Porter Jr. is doubtful for Saturday's game against the Jazz with his rotator cuff strain.
Porter not being available is kind of expected at this point. It's very inconvenient right now for fantasy owners but this is unfortunately how it's going to go the rest of the way. He wants to play even though the Bulls 2018-19 season was over in like… 2017. We'll see if he can get into a game soon.
Source: K.C. Johnson on Twitter
March 22, 2019, 1:46 pmKris Dunn - G - Chicago Bulls
Kris Dunn is questionable for Saturday's game against the Jazz with a back issue.
This would be a big blow for Dunn owners in the home stretch if he was hobbled for the stretch run here. There's a lot of upside in Dunn's profile and he'll at least be in the top-100 conversation if he's healthy and on the floor.
Source: K.C. Johnson on Twitter