Wednesday features an eight-game main slate on DraftKings starting at 7 p.m. ET.
Let’s dive into some of my favorite plays at each position.
Jalen Brunson, New York Knicks vs. Indiana Pacers ($8,200) – We’re only halfway through his first season with New York, but it’s safe to say that Brunson is the Knicks’ best point guard in a really long time. There were plenty of skeptics when he signed a four-year, $104M contract this offseason — myself included — but he has been worth every penny. He has thrived after escaping Luka Doncic’s shadow, averaging 21.6 points and 6.5 assists per game.
Brunson has been even better recently. He’s taken on a massive workload since RJ Barrett went down with a finger injury, increasing his usage rate by 6.6 percentage points over his past four contests. He’s also played at least 38.4 minutes in each game, and he’s coming off 59.25 DKFP in his last outing. Brunson has been priced up over that time frame, but he draws one of the best possible matchups Tuesday vs. the Pacers. They rank fifth in pace and 23rd in defensive efficiency, so Brunson can continue to be relied upon if Barrett is sidelined.
Jrue Holiday, Milwaukee Bucks at Atlanta Hawks ($7,200) – Holiday missed some time recently with an illness, and the team took it easy on him when he returned to the lineup. He played 19.5 minutes or fewer in his first two contests, and he also sat out on the second leg of a back-to-back.
However, Holiday returned to his usual workload in the team’s last contest, racking up 33.8 minutes vs. the Knicks. If he’s going to continue to see that much playing time, he’s undoubtedly underpriced at $7,200. His salary has gotten as high as $8,600 over the past month, and it reached $9,000 earlier this season. Holiday has had to take on a slightly larger role with Khris Middleton unavailable for most of the year, and he’s averaged 1.2 DKFP per minute this season. Add in an excellent matchup vs. the Hawks, and this is a great buy-low opportunity with the veteran guard.
Other Options – CJ McCollum ($8,700), Desmond Bane ($7,000)
Duane Washington Jr., Phoenix Suns at Denver Nuggets ($4,600) – We’re still waiting on the Suns’ injury report for the second leg of their back-to-back set, but they were absolutely decimated on Tuesday. The team was without Chris Paul, Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton, Cam Payne and Cameron Johnson, opening up tons of value with the rest of the roster.
There’s a chance that Paul is able to return on Wednesday, but if he’s out, Washington should continue to provide outstanding value in the backcourt. He’s been a usage monster for the Suns recently, posting a usage rate of at least 32.5% in three straight games. He hasn’t played a ton of minutes in those contests, but he’s made up for it with elite per-minute efficiency. Washington has scored at least 27 DKFP in all three games, including at least 31.25 in his past two. Overall, he’s averaged 1.3 DKFP per minute over the past month, so he should continue to thrive when he’s on the floor.
Other Options – Pat Connaughton ($3,500), Jordan Goodwin ($3,100)
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks at Atlanta Hawks ($11,800) – Antetokounmpo ran into a tough matchup Monday vs. the Knicks, who are one of the best teams in basketball in terms of rebounding and defending the paint. Those are the areas where Antetokounmpo has thrived this season, and they were able to limit him to 46 DKFP in 36.4 minutes.
That doesn’t figure to be the case on Wednesday. The Hawks have been shredded on the interior this season, allowing the fifth-most points in the paint per game, and they also have the fifth-worst team rebound rate. If that’s not the perfect matchup for Antetokounmpo, I don’t know what is. He’s also a bit cheaper than usual at $11,800 after spending most of the year priced above $12,000.
Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls at Washington Wizards ($8,000) – The Bulls are another team that will be important to monitor on Wednesday. They’ve listed DeMar DeRozan as questionable, and he’s yet to miss a game this season.
If he’s unable to go, LaVine figures to be one of the biggest beneficiaries. He’s increased his usage rate by a team-high 4.1 percentage points with DeRozan off the floor, resulting in an average of 1.14 DKFP per minute. LaVine has also started to heat up after a relatively quiet start to the year. He’s racked up at least 44.5 DKFP in five of his past seven games, and he’s gone for at least 50.25 in three of them. That gives him a nice ceiling at his current price tag against a mediocre Wizards’ defense.
Other Options – Julius Randle ($10,500), Anthony Edwards ($9,100)
EDITOR’s NOTE: Suns SG/SF Landry Shamet (hip) has been ruled out Wednesday vs. the Nuggets.
Landry Shamet, Phoenix Suns at Denver Nuggets ($5,100) – Shamet was also sidelined for the Suns’ last game, but he seems most likely to return to the lineup on Wednesday. He was reportedly “begging” coach Williams to play on Tuesday, but the team decided to hold him out. Shamet has been an excellent source of value in five games without Booker and Payne this season. He’s averaged 32.5 minutes in those contests and responded with an average of 26.6 DKFP per game. He erupted for 47 DKFP vs. the Nuggets on Christmas, so he can clearly find success in this matchup.
Other Options – Kyle Anderson ($5,400), Dyson Daniels ($3,100)
Rudy Gobert, Minnesota Timberwolves at Detroit Pistons ($7,100) – Things have not gone well for Gobert in his first season with the Timberwolves. The team is struggling — they’re currently in ninth place in the Western Conference — and Gobert has averaged just 14 points, 11.9 rebounds and 1.4 blocks per game. All three of those marks are among the worst of his career since taking over as a full-time starter.
However, Gobert has started to show some signs of life. He’s racked up three straight double-doubles, finishing with at least 34.25 DKFP in each. He’s had at least 44.5 DKFP in two of those contests, and his minutes have trended upward as well. Gobert should be able to keep the momentum rolling in a potential smash spot vs. the Pistons. They rank tied for last in defensive efficiency, and they’re 29th in terms of points in the paint allowed per game.
Other Options – Jonas Valanciunas ($6,600), Alperen Sengun ($6,300)
Isaiah Stewart, Detroit Pistons vs. Minnesota Timberwolves ($5,300) – Stewart was a surprise scratch on Tuesday due to a shoulder injury, and the Pistons really can’t afford to lose any more big men. They’re already playing without Jalen Duren and Marvin Bagley, so Stewart is set for a big role if he can return to the court. He logged 35.1 minutes in his last contest and responded with 40.75 DKFP.
Stewart has averaged just under a fantasy point per minute this season, so he should continue to provide value with a few additional minutes. The matchup vs. Gobert and the Timberwolves is tough, but Stewart is underpriced if he can suit up on Wednesday.
Other Options – Brook Lopez ($5,500), Mitchell Robinson ($5,400)
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is mlamarca) 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.