We’ve got our first slate in the wake of the fallout of the Jeff Teague trade from Atlanta from Minnesota. That’s a bit dramatic, but still, with the Timberwolves back in action, they’ll play their first game without Teague in a long time. We also don’t know if Karl-Anthony Towns (knee) will be back in the lineup, so with both potentially off the court, value will open up a bit.
Elsewhere in the value stratosphere is the Philadelphia 76ers operating without Joel Embiid, who will likely be sidelined another week after hand surgery. This will give lesser players a chance to get some frontcourt minutes again, as we’ve seen the past four games for Philly. Let’s take a look at some value plays in daily fantasy basketball for Friday’s seven-game slate.
Shabazz Napier, PG, MIN @ IND ($5,000)
This price and timing lines up perfectly with the Teague trade. Now that the veteran PG is gone, the PG position is basically all Napier’s. He had been starting in place of Teague for a few weeks now, and has strung together solid stretches with a ceiling reaching around 40+ fantasy points. Teague off the roster should take some pressure off Napier, plus KAT will likely be out again. The Pacers are a tough matchup, but Napier had nine assists on Wednesday against Indiana. A little boost in scoring and we’re looking at a nice value return.
Matisse Thybulle, SG/SF, PHI vs. CHI ($4,000)
Thybulle’s name keeps popping up on my values and I don’t really care about his lack of production. He’s beens tarting in place of Embiid and played 27 minutes in the Sixers win over the Nets on Wednesday. I think it’s only a matter of time before the scoring comes around, and the Bulls are down two players in the frontcourt in Wendell Carter Jr. and Daniel Gafford. I think Philly should have a pretty easy time with Chicago, so if garbage minutes are available, I like Thybulle’s chances of reaching say 8-10 points. At this price, all the rookie would need are a few defensive stats and we’re good.
Luke Kornet, PF/C, CHI @ PHI ($4,900)
Speaking of the Bulls, as I mentioned above, they’re thin in the frontcourt. Kornet emerged on Wednesday as the top big off the bench, playing a team-high 35 minutes. It’s unclear if Kornet will start in place of Gafford, but even if it’s Thaddeus Young, I think Kornet will see plenty of minutes because of his shooting ability. Kornet can space the floor better than Young and is better overall offensively. If Kornet is going to get in the 30-minute realm tonight, then I think he has a good shot at being a solid value.
Jakob Poeltl, C, SAS vs. ATL ($3,300)
The Spurs will be a trendy target for value taking on the Hawks at home. Atlanta has been poor defensively all season and lacks frontcourt depth behind John Collins. Poeltl is another per 36-minute darling, averaging a double-double at 10.4 points and 11.7 rebounds, plus 3.7 assists and 2.9 blocks under those metrics. Poeltl rarely sees more than 20 minutes, but if this game gets out of hand, he could see run in garbage time. Plus, we aren’t looking for Poeltl to break things open, just enough to get us there, which is really only around 20 fantasy points.