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Fantasy Basketball Value Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Bargain Plays for January 11

Garion Thorne breaks down his top DraftKings value plays for Wednesday’s NBA slate.

NBA: Phoenix Suns at Dallas Mavericks Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

I had to double-check my calendar this morning to make sure it was Wednesday. Why? Certainly not because I took a couple days off and I haven’t needed the concept of time lately, but because there’s only eight game on tonight’s featured NBA slate.

Single-digit games on a Wednesday? Madness. Let’s dive into it.

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C Nerlens Noel, Detroit Pistons vs. Minnesota Timberwolves, $3,000

I’m not confident that I could have told you Noel was employed by the Pistons a week ago, yet here we are. Thanks to injuries to Isaiah Stewart ($5,300; shoulder), Jalen Duren ($4,800; ankle) and Marvin Bagley III (hand), Noel was essentially the last big man standing in Detroit on Tuesday, which meant his first start of 2022-23. Noel logged 20.6 minutes in a blowout loss to the 76ers, registering 20.75 DKFP due mostly to five rebounds and three blocks. The former lottery pick seems pretty washed — he’s somehow only 28-years-old — yet if Stewart and Duren remain sidelined on the second night of this back-to-back set, you have to consider Noel at the bare minimum. Kevin Knox II ($3,100) is also an asset to keep an eye on, with Bojan Bogdanovic ($6,200; calf) a question mark for this evening’s tilt against an uptempo Timberwolves team.


PG/SG Josh Richardson, San Antonio Spurs at Memphis Grizzlies, $4,600

With Devin Vassell (knee) out until the All-Star break and Keldon Johnson ($7,000; hamstring) constantly in and out of the lineup, the Spurs have needed a wing to step up the last couple of weeks. That man has generally been Richardson, one of few veteran presences on this young San Antonio roster. In fact, in the 435 possessions Richardson has logged without either Vassell or Johnson on the floor, the 29-year-old has registered a very notable 1.07 DKFP per minute. More recently, Richardson’s averaged 17.5 points, 4.5 assists and 34.0 DKFP in the Spurs past two games — both coming with Johnson injured. Johnson is currently listed as questionable for this evening’s matchup in Memphis, a contest that happens to own this slate’s highest total on DraftKings Sportsbook. Considering both the Grizzlies and the Spurs sit top 10 in pace across their last 10 games, I think this one lives up to the high-scoring hype. You’ll want some exposure and Richardson is an affordable entry point.


PF/C Dario Saric, Phoenix Suns at Denver Nuggets, $3,500

This most anticipated and important injury report for tonight’s slate is Phoenix. The Suns finish off a back-to-back set in Denver this evening, a night after missing almost their entire starting lineup due to injury. No Devin Booker (groin). No Chris Paul ($7,600; hip). No Deandre Ayton ($7,700; ankle). No Cameron Johnson (knee). No Landry Shamet ($5,100; hip). There’s a chance Paul, Ayton or Shamet could return on Wednesday, though Phoenix might feel like it’s playing with house money after beating Golden State on Tuesday. Whatever the case, if specifically Ayton is sidelined again, you’ll have to take a serious look at Saric against the Nuggets. In a season-high 30.3 minutes, Saric turned back the clock to his Philadelphia days, nearly posting a triple-double. He’d finish with 19 points, nine rebounds and a team-high seven assists, culminating in 41.25 DKFP. Obviously, Saric’s price tag is obscenely low for that level of fantasy production.

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.