• It is Friday, November 30 and I am back once again to help break down some of my favorite value plays for tonight’s 11-game NBA slate. As some of you may know we are partnered with DraftKings and will be using their scoring and salary format.

    Tonight is also special because we will be running another “Hoop Ball Beat the Expert” contest on DraftKings. The contest entry fee is only $3 and top 10 take home prize money, with first place also receiving a glorious Hoop Ball t-shirt. These contests are loads of fun to do. And you can join by clicking right here!

    Tonight is going to be an important night to monitor news and players heading into lock and even after lock. We have a few game-time decisions that could drastically impact the way we view the slate and plenty of value to choose from and more expected to open up. DFS is a fluid motion and your lineups and plays should be subject to change as the news rolls in and utilizing the late swap feature may be essential tonight. We have a lot of studs in good spots tonight, so I am going to focus more on the cheaper options to fit those guys and throw in two of my top high-priced options as well. Let’s jump right into some of my favorite value plays to target.

    Point Guard

    Elie Okobo vs. Magic $3,000 – This one is a little risky given how late the game starts, but if we get the word that Okobo will draw a start we have to look at him. In 32 minutes last game he shot 8-of-12 and managed 33.5 DK points. At minimum salary we are not looking for a whole lot and I find it hard to believe Okobo does not make value if starting.

    Ryan Arcidiacono vs. Pistons $4,400 – There may not be much juice left in the orange to squeeze, but we’ve seen the upside Arcidiacono has when playing 30-plus minutes. I do not expect another five steals, but he is running point and has taking double digit shot attempts over the past two games. We have a lot of value in a similar price range tonight

    Kemba Walker vs. Jazz $8,800 – This is the lowest we have seen Walker priced in quite some time and this is a good spot to take advantage of it. The Jazz’s defense is good, but the volume in which Walker has been shooting virtually makes him matchup-proof.

    Shooting Guard

    Marcus Smart vs. Cavs $4,300 – No Jaylen Brown means we are looking at Smart being inserted back into the starting lineup. Smart is not someone who absorbs a ton of usage, but he played 40 minutes in the last game that Brown sat and he could accumulate defensive and counting stats quickly. This a great matchup and even in a blowout I expect Smart to play close to 30 minutes.

    Jordan Clarkson vs. Celtics $5,300 – David Nwaba has already been ruled out and Kyle Korver has been traded to the Jazz and we do not know if Alec Burks will play tonight even if he’s available; this leaves Clarkson and Andrew Harrison as the lone bench guards for the Cavs. Clarkson played 32 minutes coming off of the bench in the Cavs’ last game and took 22 shots from the floor for 35.8 DK points. He makes very a solid pivot off of Collin Sexton, but both are fantastic plays tonight. If Burks is confirmed to get minutes tonight it would make me lean slightly more towards Sexton compared to Clarkson.

    D’Angelo Russell vs. Grizzlies $7,300 – I’ve seen all I need to see to throw Russell into my player pool on a nightly basis. Since Caris LeVert has gone out we have seen Russell’s minutes and usage spike massively. Over his last two games he has taken 25 and 28 shots from the floor. In one of those games he shot 57 percent and dropped over 60 DK points and even in the game he shot poorly (24 percent) he still managed 35 DK points. The upside is there and barring a blowout so is the floor. I don’t love the fact the Mike Conley will be defending Russell for most of the game, but the usage is just too enticing to steer me away.

    Small Forward

    Juancho Hernangomez vs. Blazers $4,700 – Would it be a Friday DFS article if I hadn’t mentioned Hernangomez? If you look at his game logs you will immediately be turned off, but there is a ton of upside available at his price. We have seen him drop multiple 40-plus DK point games in a row and If Gary Harris were forced to sit out again we could look to him for more usage as well. He is going to get overlooked on this massive slate. I’d likely reserve him for GPP’s as we have safer cash options around this price range.

    Markieff Morris vs. Sixers $5,500 – Dwight Howard has already been ruled out, leaving Thomas Bryant and Markieff Morris to man the center position. Bryant hasn’t played more than 18 minutes since being inserted into the starting lineup, leaving Morris to shoulder the load. In the past, Morris has struggled grasping usage playing alongside of John Wall and Bradley Beal, but that is a thing of the past now that he is coming off of the bench. He’s averaging 34.3 DK points over his last five games and the Wizards will need their bigger bodies.

    Power Forward

    Larry Nance Jr. vs. Celtics $5,600 – In both games that Nwaba has missed we have seen Nance play 36 and 38 minutes and Nwaba is out again tonight. I do not love this matchup but we know Nance is a point-per-minute producer and he gets to face a slightly weaker frontcourt without Al Horford. Tristan Thompson is another great player, but I have a lot of love for multiple center options on tonight’s slate and sliding Nance in at one of the forward spots makes more sense as of now.

    JaMychal Green/ Jaren Jackson Jr. vs. Nets $4,300/ $5,800 – Marc Gasol practiced in full on Thursday, but is currently being listed as a game-time decision for Friday’s game. If he were forced to sit out we have a ton of value that opens up. If becomes almost imperative that you have one of either Green or JJJ. I’d lean Green for the savings and small forward eligibility, but he probably doesn’t possess the same upside JJJ could offer with his blocks. Mike Conley would also position himself as one of the top point guard plays with Gasol out.


    Joel Embiid vs. Wizards $10,900 – Embiid is expensive, but warrants every dollar in this matchup. Dwight Howard has already been ruled out for the Wizards, leaving them extremely thin in the frontcourt. The Wizards do not have any bodies on their team with the size and strength to guard Embiid and if this game stays close he should have his way in the paint. Jimmy Butler has not impacted Embiid’s usage since he’s been there.

    Jusuf Nurkic vs. Nuggets $6,800 – This is a revenge spot for Big Nurk against his former team, but also a spot were we may assured of his minutes. We know Jokic is the Nuggets’ best player and as long as he is on the court we should have a fair dose of Nurkic barring foul trouble. His price tag is more than fair given his upside and it allows us to get some exposure to the late game. We have a ton of centers on the board to choose from, but Nurkic is one of my favorite plays in terms of points per dollar.

    Aron Baynes vs. Cavs $3,200 – Honestly, I probably won’t have a ton of Baynes on tonight’s slate. I love a lot of the center options and even though he is a value play he takes up one of those spots. We saw him go off in only 22 minutes against the Hawks the last time Horford was out, so I feel the need to mention him if you are looking to construct a lineup paying up for guards or multiple studs.

    Thank you all again for the support and if you have any questions or comments you could find me on Twitter @MikeApotria. Don’t forget to reserve your entry into tonight’s “Hoop Ball Beat the Expert” contest. It’s one you won’t want to miss out on.

Fantasy News

  • Frank Kaminsky
    PF, Phoenix Suns

    Frank Kaminsky led the Suns in scoring with 22 points on 6-of-10 shooting to go with two triples, six boards, three assists and a block in Monday's 102-107 loss to the Nuggets.

    Kaminsky won't beat out Deandre Ayton (14 points, four rebounds, one assist and a block) but if the Suns are willing to play him at power forward, he might be a fringe standard-league guy.

  • Kelly Oubre Jr.
    SF, Phoenix Suns

    Kelly Oubre Jr. scored 11 points on 3-of-11 shooting with four rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block on Monday.

    Oubre Jr. went 3-for-11 from the field but 5-for-6 at the line. He's not going to be an efficient shooter from the field, but he gets to the line frequently and puts up counting stats which makes him an appealing fantasy option.

  • Michael Porter Jr.
    PF, Denver Nuggets

    Michael Porter Jr. scored 11 points on 5-of-10 shooting with five rebounds, a steal, two blocks and a 3-pointer against the Suns on Monday.

    Porter Jr. looks great out there and right now the only real fear is whether or not he can stay healthy. Nuggets fans have waited a while, but Porter has looked fluid and athletic during the preseason as a forward that can do a little bit of everything. He's definitely someone you'll want to watch closely.

  • Jamal Murray
    PG, Denver Nuggets

    Jamal Murray scored 16 points on 6-of-16 shooting with eight rebounds, six assists and two triples in Monday's game against the Suns.

    Murray is the clear No. 2 guy in Denver behind Nikola Jokic (four points, four rebounds, four assists, a steal and a block) and leads a high powered Nuggets offense which has given him a clear green light. Gary Harris (18 points, two triples, two rebounds, two assists and a steal) is going to have to battle his way into production as the Nuggets have plenty of guards that can play.

  • Jerami Grant
    SF, Denver Nuggets

    Jerami Grant scored 22 points on 6-of-8 shooting with two triples, two rebounds and three steals in Monday's preseason game against the Suns.

    Grant got the starting nod with Paul Millsap (DNP-CD) sitting out and should contribute solid minutes to a deep Nuggets team. There's too much depth on the team for him to make a fantasy dent like he did last year, but if Millsap misses time. Grant should post standard-league value as a fill-in.

  • Luka Doncic
    PG-SF, Dallas Mavericks

    Luka Doncic had a double-double with 19 points (4-for-10 FGs, 9-for-11 FTs), 10 rebounds, seven assists, one steal, one block, two threes and six turnovers in 27 minutes in a 107-70 win on Monday over the Thunder.

    Doncic's line is worth a deeper look. It reminds us to stay away from his current ADP if you're concerned about turnovers. It also shows how he could easily have a big jump in free throw percentage this season, as he shot far better in Europe than he did during his rookie season.

  • Kristaps Porzingis
    PF-C, Dallas Mavericks

    Kristaps Porzingis double-doubled in an easy win over the Thunder on Monday night, putting up 17 points (7-for-21 FGs), 13 rebounds, one block and three 3-pointers in 26 minutes.

    Porzingis has played in three straight games, which is nice to see. He's one of the biggest boom-or-bust picks this season with a ceiling in the top-15 and we know what the floor looks like.

  • Tim Hardaway Jr.
    SF, Dallas Mavericks

    Tim Hardaway Jr. hit three treys off the bench as part of a 13-point night (4-for-5 FGs, 2-for-2 FTs) that also included four rebounds, three assists and a steal in 22 minutes in a victory over the Thunder.

    Hardaway has been valuable in fantasy at times, but he may not get enough minutes this season to do it again. Keep a close watch on his role, and if he can get 25 minutes a night, Hardaway could be worth starting for his threes and points.

  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
    SG, Oklahoma City Thunder

    In 29 minutes, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander provided 16 points (7-for-16 FGs, 2-for-2 FTs) and eight rebounds but also five turnovers and zero assists in a 107-70 loss to the Mavs on Monday.

    It was a mixed bag for SGA, but he's still looking like a good pick in the middle rounds. Dennis Schroder started and hit just one of his 10 field goal attempts, though he did pass out six assists.

  • Rudy Gobert
    C, Utah Jazz

    Rudy Gobert scored 17 points on 5-of-6 shooting with six rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block in Monday's 115-128 loss to the Kings.

    Gobert remains doing Gobert things and the only real worry for fantasy owners is seeing the blocks decline. There are plenty of promising young bigs headed into the next season which means Gobert's value is a bit less than it once was.