• Welcome back to another Friday edition of my top DFS plays of the night. It is January 11 and we have nine games to check out for tonight’s slate. We have a few superstars to play and ton of injuries that have opened up the value to get there. I do not feel the need to mention the studs that drop monster lines every night. These guys are always in play. We are here to focus on some value to help us jam those studs in.

    Tonight seems like a wonky night that and we are going to have to take some hard stances on games and players. As of Friday morning we currently have five games with spreads of nine points or greater, meaning there are plenty of blowout chances. If we are play studs from these games it is going to be a must to correlate them properly.

    For instance, if you are playing anyone from the Warriors in the late game we are hoping to get all four quarters worth of play out of them. To do this we would need the Bulls to keep the game intact and we’d have to identify the key players who could help do that. The game currently has Golden State favored by 15 ½ points and the players’ prices in this game reflect on the spread.

    A few examples of correlation plays I like for tonight’s games:

    *James Harden with Tristan Thompson and or Jordan Clarkson.

    *Warriors with Lauri Markkanen, Zach LaVine or Kris Dunn. (Preferably in that order)

    *Raptors with D’Angelo Russell and or DeMarre Carroll.

    *Sixers with Trae Young, John Collins or Dewayne Dedmon.

    These are all spots I believe could easily get out of hand and on the chance that they stay intact I believe it would largely be in part of the players mentioned as pairings. This, by no means, means you have to correlate your plays, it just sometimes makes sense when trying to get the most out of your players in mass field GPP’s. Now that we got that out of the way let’s jump into some of my favorite value plays of the night.

    Point Guard

    Lonzo Ball vs. Jazz $6,500 – This is a game everyone is going to target heavily. We know right off of the rip that Donovan Mitchell and every other Jazz player gets a bump because of matchup and injuries. Knowing this means we have to take a look at some Lakers and Ball is my favorite. He draws a defensive matchup against Mitchell, but more importantly, Ball will have a chance to stuff the defensive stats guarding a bunch of guards who are not truly point guards.

    Jordan Clarkson vs. Rockets $5,700 – Clarkson has been taking advantage of the injuries in Cleveland. He’s taken at least 16 shot attempts and has scored at least 35 DK points in each of the last three games and his minutes feel safe round 26 regardless of the score. Rodney Hood is currently being considered questionable and we really want to hear that he is out again to utilize Clarkson.

    Jeremy Lin vs. Wizards $4,600 – Lin started in place of Kevin Huerter the other night and went nuts for us DFS guys and with Huerter back I assumed it was time to hop off. I was wrong and Lin played 28 minutes with Huerter starting and took 18 shots off of the bench. I mentioned the other night liking Lin better coming off of the bench and the usage is the reason why. Lin falls into the category of players who contain upside whether or not the game stays close.

    Shooting Guard

    Donovan Mitchell vs. Lakers $7,900 – This play is no secret; Mitchell is the chalk play of the night. The Jazz have literally no one to play point guard and Mitchell should be handling the duties on top of normal scoring load in a great matchup versus the Lakers.

    Eric Bledsoe/Khris Middleton vs. Wizards $6,100/$6,900 – I was close to calling it quits on the article, hitting save and sending it in. That was until Giannis got downgraded to doubtful, leaving us to scramble to where his massive usage will fall. Bledsoe and Middleton get a massive bump and we also have Malcolm Brogdon in play at $5,700. This totally changes the outlook of this game and even puts more Wizards in play with my favorites being Bradley Beal and Otto Porter.

    Kyle Korver vs. Lakers $3,500 – While Mitchell is the obvious play in Utah we need to also focus on where the value will come from due to injuries. With Mitchell likely running point we should see a lot more of Kyle Korver and Jae Crowder in the starting lineup playing small forward and shooting guard. Jae Crowder is definitely the safer play, but Korver could provide some decent value if we are trying to spend up on James Harden.

    Small Forward

    Luka Doncic vs. Timberwolves $8,400 – Dennis Smith Jr. has already been ruled out and that means Doncic’s usage will be insane. This kid has been nothing short of unreal and completely warrants this price tag. He’s shown flashes of upside, but I don’t believe we’ve truly seen his “ceiling” game yet. It may not be tonight either, but his floor is so steady that I am willing to take a few shots and not worry about getting burned.

    Andrew Wiggins vs. Mavericks $6,800 – Wiggins looks like a totally different player without Thibs in town. In the past two games he has taken a combined 47 shot attempts and that transitioned into 104.25 DK points over that span. He’s pretty scoring-dependent, but if we have the news that Derrick Rose is going to miss again I’d expect the volume to continue for Wiggins.

    Joe Ingles vs. Lakers $5,700 – Ingles looks like he will enter the night as the Jazz’s second most reliable ball handler. He is likely to get slightly overlooked between spending up on Mitchell or spending down on Crowder and Korver, but this game has 30-40 DK points written all over it. It is going to come down to construction, but it is an absolute necessity to get some exposure to this game and we have multiple ways to do so.

    Power Forward

    Domantas Sabonis vs. Knicks $7,500 – All aboard the Sabonis train, next stop Madison Square Garden. Myles Turner is currently being listed as questionable and if he gets ruled out again we could go right back to the well. Sabonis’ point-per-minute stats are fantastic with Turner in and only rise with him off of the court. The Knicks have struggled against centers all year and could be without Enes Kanter. To be honest, we’d probably rather have Kanter play, but either way I am not scared off of the price increase, as long as Turner is out.

    Another option we have to keep an eye on is Kyle O’Quinn. He is a point-per-minute type of player and could stuff the stat sheet in limited minutes. He played 21 minutes last game and if this game were to get out of hand or Sabonis were to get into foul trouble he could see more. Strictly a GPP play if Myles Turner is out.

    Lauri Markannen vs. Warriors $5,900 – This is a stupid cheap price for Markannan and if you think this game stays close he is in line for a great game. The late game has all of the makings to be a blowout, but we’ve seen the Bulls hang in there long enough for their key players to hit value.

    Dario Saric vs. Mavericks $4,500 – We are looking for value all over with James Harden and the Greek Freak (maybe) on tonight’s slate and we may still be able to take advantage of the coaching switch in Minnesota. It was only one game, but without Thibs we saw Saric play 25 minutes and take 12 shots. If we are going to have a floor like that going forward we are going to want to take advantage of it and the time to do so is not following the game because that’s when the price increase happens. Sometimes in DFS you can capitalize off taking a chance and predicting rotation moves before they happen. There is risk associated with this play and I’d leave him for tournaments.

    Center

    Rudy Gobert $8,000 vs. Lakers – Let’s be real, who’s stopping Gobert tonight? He’s priced fairly and when we play Gobert we know we are always getting that safe floor with massive upside due to rebounding and blocked shots. Tonight he faces a Lakers team that struggles with rebounding. A lot of the Jazz players will be chalky tonight, so pivots could come in handy, but Gobert is safe either way.

    Tristan Thompson vs. Rockets $5,800 – Thompson looks to back to full strength after playing almost 30 minutes of the second half of a back-to-back the other night. Tonight James Harden rolls into town and if we are targeting him we are going to need a few Cavs’ players to target as well. Thompson will get the bulk of the center minutes if this game stays close and before injuring himself we saw him mop the glass when getting those minutes. Larry Nance Jr. is going to be out for some time and this may be our opportunity to grab Thompson at a depressed price.

    Brook Lopez vs. Wizards $4,900 – BroLo has played 30 minutes in each of the last two games and Draws a defensive matchup against a Wizards team that is porous on defense and have little to no bodies in the frontcourt. He is never going to be a guy with massive usage and he does not crash the glass, but at $4,900 there is a lot worse we could do at center.

    *Damian Lillard is currently being listed as questionable and his status would drastically change the slate. We’d have a lot more value and could easily pay up for a stud like Harden or Giannis. We’d have to take a look at the other main cogs on C.J. McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic, with the likelihood of Evan Turner and Seth Curry seeing more opportunity running point and providing us with some value under $4,000.

    I also wanted to give a big shout out to everyone who competed in this week’s “Beat the Expert” contest. We have the most entries out of any contest so far and are so close to filling and expanding this even more. As always you could find me on Twitter @MikeApotria if you have any questions or comments.

Fantasy News

  • Mitchell Robinson - C - New York Knicks

    Mitchell Robinson was able to play 16 minutes before fouling out on Monday afternoon while collecting eight points, six rebounds, a steal and two blocks in the process.

    Robinson got a brief talking-to in the first half as the Thunder basically had a parade to the bucket, but it's not like the rookie was the only one at fault. Fantasy owners have to like that he registered two swats in his short stint today, as that's pretty much going to be the backbone of his value. He's an immediate add for anyone in need of blocks and a strong pickup in general if the Knicks really are planning on dropping Enes Kanter from the rotation. Robinson is in line for a big finish to the season if he can stay on the court.

  • Enes Kanter - C - New York Knicks

    Enes Kanter posted 11 points and three rebounds in 19 minutes during Monday's loss to the Thunder, just a few hours after David Fizdale said that Kanter was on his way out of the rotation.

    Luke Kornet (two points, one rebound, one steal) sprained his ankle and left after just seven minutes, which threw Kanter a lifeline. After the game, Kanter said that he was unhappy about being out of the rotation and that while he loves New York he'd leave the next steps up to his management and the Knicks' decision-makers. This could become a major headache for the rest of the week unless the Knicks provide a definitive timeline for Kornet.

    Source: Ian Begley on Twitter

  • Paul George - F - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Paul George scored 31 points for the second consecutive game on Monday, going 9-of-18 from the field and 9-of-9 from the charity stripe along with four rebounds, four assists, four 3-pointers and a steal.

    An easy day for PG as the Thunder were up comfortably after about eight minutes of action and never looked back. Jerami Grant, who has sneakily become another of OKC's consistent fantasy options, added 16 points, six rebounds, two assists, two blocks and a 3-pointer. There's never a reason to remove either player here from fantasy lineups.

  • Abdel Nader - F - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Abdel Nader took full advantage of garbage time against the Knicks, scoring 16 points in the fourth quarter of Monday's win.

    Nader ended up with 20 minutes on the day and was able to add six rebounds, two assists, two steals and two threes to his scoring numbers. He's emerged as a quality depth piece for OKC and is certainly on the radar in leagues with 20 teams or more. We wouldn't feel entirely comfortable with Nader since the return of Alex Abrines figures to hurt him, but he's played well enough over the last few weeks to stay on the court, even if it's only for a handful of minutes a night.

  • Nerlens Noel - F/C - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Nerlens Noel saw 20 minutes in Monday's blowout and delivered six points, eight rebounds and two assists.

    It's a little bit of a disappointment considering it's not all that different from Noel's usual work in about half the playing time. He remains an elite per-minute producer of steals and blocks and has a place on rosters in all roto formats, while he's more of a specialist for H2H leagues. Steven Adams had a light day of work with the Thunder leading throughout, posting 10 points, seven rebounds and three assists in 30 minutes.

  • Dewayne Dedmon - C - Atlanta Hawks

    Dewayne Dedmon went back to the locker room in the first quarter of Monday's game.

    Dedmon has been dealing with a left ankle sprain lately though there's no word on whether this is related. Hopefully it's not, and we'll keep you updated as more information becomes available. A re-aggravation would make Alex Len a potential add for any teams in need of frontcourt help.

    Source: KL Chouinard on Twitter

  • Russell Westbrook - G - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Russell Westbrook played just 29 minutes in Monday's easy win over the Knicks, though it was still enough for him to post 17 points, 10 rebounds, nine assists and a 3-pointer.

    Even better, Westbrook went 6-of-12 from the field and 4-of-5 from the line. The Thunder were up by 20 about halfway through the first quarter and kept that lead for the rest of the day, so nobody needed to keep the pedal down. Dennis Schroder also scored 17 points to go with three rebounds, four assists, four triples and a steal.

  • Patrick Patterson - F - Oklahoma City Thunder

    Patrick Patterson took an elbow to the face and was forced out of Monday's game, finishing with two points in nine minutes of action.

    After the game Billy Donovan said he believed Patterson only suffered a bloody nose on the play but he'll be monitored by the medical staff just in case. Patterson is a classic stretch four but just doesn't play enough to be rostered in fantasy.

    Source: Maddie Lee on Twitter

  • Kenneth Faried - F/C - Brooklyn Nets

    Kenneth Faried is expected to be available for the Rockets' game on Monday.

    He's still not officially a member of the team, but he likely will be in a few hours. Faried is a speculative add for anyone in need of frontcourt help considering how much Houston has been playing its healthy guys lately.

    Source: Jonathan Feigen on Twitter

  • Kevin Huerter - G - Atlanta Hawks

    Kevin Huerter (sore neck) will not play on Monday, and Taurean Prince will start in his place.

    Huerter's been quietly floating in and out of fantasy relevance lately but Prince is the far better option. We're not expecting this arrangement to continue once Huerter is fully healthy, but we are anticipating that Prince moves into the starting small forward spot eventually. He should be owned in all leagues while Huerter is a low-end play that really grinds out value in the aggregate rather than a night-to-night basis.

    Source: KL Chouinard on Twitter