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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Targets, Values for December 25

Matt LaMarca gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Friday’s fantasy basketball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 12 p.m. ET.

Merry Christmas everybody! The NBA is making us full of cheer with a five-game slate on Friday, starting with the Pelicans vs. the Heat at 12 p.m. ET and wrapping up with the Clippers vs. the Nuggets at 10:30 p.m. ET.

DraftKings also has some massive prize pools available for this slate, headlined by the DraftKings Milly Maker tournament, which pays out a top prize of $1 million.

Let’s break down some of the top studs and values at each position to help you build your lineups.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball Millionaire lineups here: NBA $2.5M Holiday Basketball Millionaire [$1M to 1st]



Point Guard

Stud

Luka Doncic, DAL @ LAL, $10,700 – Doncic is coming off a slightly disappointing performance in his first game of the season. He finished with 49.0 DKFP, but there’s plenty of reason for optimism moving forward. For starters, Doncic is coming off one of the most impressive seasons ever for a player at just 21 years old. He should continue to get better as he gets older, which is scary considering he averaged 55.4 DKFP per game last season.

Doncic will also continue to see an expanded workload with Kristaps Porzingis out of the lineup. He posted a usage rate of 40.1% in his last game, which is more than a three-point increase compared to his mark of 36.8% last season. If he can shoot the ball better on Christmas — he was 0-6 from 3-point range in particular — he could be looking at a monster day.

Other Options – Stephen Curry ($10,200), Jimmy Butler ($8,000)

Value

Jeff Teague, BOS vs. BKN, $4,200 – Teague has the chance to play a significant role for the Celtics early in the season. Kemba Walker is still recovering from a knee injury, and Teague played 25.0 minutes off the bench in their first game vs. the Bucks. He was fantastic in that contest, finishing with 36.75 DKFP. He probably won’t be able to duplicate that performance, but he doesn’t need to at just $4,200. That’s simply too cheap given his current role in the offense.

This game between the Celtics and Nets also stands out as one of the best games to target on Christmas. The 228.5-point total is the second-highest mark on the slate, and the Nets are listed as just three-point favorites.

Other Options – Eric Bledsoe ($5,600), Bradley Wanamaker ($3,100)


Big Trey Payday

Opt-in and if a player hits a 3-pointer in the last minute of the fourth quarter in tonight’s New Orleans vs. Miami game or tonight’s Golden State vs. Milwaukee game or tonight’s Dallas vs. Los Angeles game or Los Angeles vs. Denver game, you get an entry to an exclusive $100K contest on 12/30! See the DraftKings Big Trey Payday page for more details!


Shooting Guard

Stud

Jaylen Brown, BOS vs. BKN, $7,000 – The Celtics have plenty of usage available at the moment. Not only is Walker hurt, but Gordon Hayward is now playing in Charlotte. With that in mind, it’s not surprising that Brown exploded for 52.75 DKFP on opening night. He posted a usage rate of 29.4% in that contest, which puts him on pace to shatter his previous career-high of 24.7%

Other Options – Khris Middleton ($7,400), Eric Bledsoe ($5,600)

Value

Duncan Robinson, MIA vs. NOP, $4,400 – Robinson is a better real-life player than fantasy player, but he still has some appeal at his current price tag. He’s not going to provide a ton of production in the peripheral categories, but he has the ability to fill it up from behind in the 3-point line. He also saw 30.3 minutes on opening night, which is a solid number considering his price tag.

Other Options – Josh Richardson ($5,400), Donte DiVincenzo ($4,700)


Small Forward

Stud

Jayson Tatum, BOS vs. BKN, $9,300 – Tatum has a chance to join the truly elite fantasy players this season. He posted a usage rate of 39.2% in his first game of the season, resulting in 48.4 DKFP in a tough matchup vs. the Bucks. He increased his usage rate by +8.5% with Walker and Hayward off the court last season, so he should continue to gobble up usage with both players out of the lineup.

Other Options – Kawhi Leonard ($9,800), Brandon Ingram ($8,300)

Value

Dorian Finney-Smith, DAL @ LAL, $4,800 – Finney-Smith is never going to be a sexy DFS target, but he’s a strong value at the moment. He’s priced at just $4,800, and he played 35.8 minutes in place of Porzingis in the Mavericks’ first game of the season. Finney-Smith has historically averaged 24.99 DKFP in games where he plays at least 30 minutes, so he has the potential to be one of the best values on the slate.

Other Options – JJ Redick ($4,400), Pat Connaughton ($3,200)


Power Forward

Stud

Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL vs. GSW, $10,900 – Antetokounmpo looked as good as ever on opening night. He scored 57.75 DKFP and posted a usage rate of 42.3%, and he finished with 35 points and 13 rebounds. The biggest development was that he attempted eight 3-pointers in that contest and actually made three of them! Giannis is never going to be a dead-eye 3-point shooter — using him in that role would be a waste — but he’s going to be impossible to guard if he can keep defenses from sagging way off him.

He gets arguably the best matchup on the slate vs. the Warriors, who were demolished by the Nets on opening night. They are also still without Draymond Green, so the Warriors have no one on the roster who can guard him. The Bucks lead the slate with an implied team total of 121.25 points, and no other team owns a mark above 117.0.

Other Options – Anthony Davis ($10,300), Zion Williamson ($8,100)

Value

Paul Millsap, DEN vs. LAC, $4,900 – The Nuggets are a bit thinner at the four this season after losing Jerami Grant, which should be a good thing for Millsap. He’s coming off 36.1 minutes vs. the Kings on Wednesday, albeit in a game that went to overtime. Still, that means he played more than 31 minutes during regulation, which is something he did in just seven of 51 games last year.

Millsap is still capable of averaging nearly 1.00 fantasy points per minute, so he’s underpriced if he’s going to continue to see that much playing time.

Other Options – Montrezl Harrell ($6,000), Maxi Kleber ($3,500)


Center

Stud

Bam Adebayo, MIA vs. NOP, $7,800 – Adebayo is one of the most well-rounded big men in the league, and he’s capable of filling up the stat sheet on a nightly basis. He’s priced in an interesting area on Christmas — cheaper than Nikola Jokic but more expensive than the values — which could keep his ownership down.

He also draws a solid matchup vs. the Pelicans, who allowed the ninth-most fantasy points to the position last season.

Other Options – Nikola Jokic ($10,100)

Value

Steven Adams, NOP @ MIA, $5,900 – Steven Adams saw 30.6 minutes in his first game with the Pelicans, and he responded with 34.5 DraftKings points. He’s not the most exciting player to roster, but he’s a good bet to return value at his current salary.

Other Options – Daniel Theis ($5,400), Kelly Olynyk ($4,100)

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball Millionaire lineups here: NBA $2.5M Holiday Basketball Millionaire [$1M to 1st]


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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 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.


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