Saturday features an eight-game NBA main slate, and the action gets underway at 7:00 p.m. ET. Let’s go position-by-position and break down everything you’ll need to know to set your lineups.
Ja Morant, Memphis Grizzlies vs. Minnesota Timberwolves, $10,200 — The Grizzlies will be without PG/SG De’Anthony Melton, and SF Dillon Brooks ($6,100) is doubtful. Morant was was already a usage monster (32%) and a productive one (1.6 FPPM over his last five games), but on Saturday night, he could be a one-man show. Minnesota is average defensively (14th), but they play at the third-fastest pace. This plays right to the Grizzlies’ wheelhouse, as they play at the fourth-fastest pace. It’s no surprise that this game has the third-highest total on the slate (219).
Other Options: Trae Young ($9,500)
Gabe Vincent, Miami Heat at Washington Wizards, $3,000 — Sometimes starter but always hero of the second unit, Tyler Herro ($7,300), is questionable Saturday night vs. the Wizards. Herro missed Thursday night’s game and Gabe Vincent took over Herro’s role as leader of the second string and scored 26 DKFP (18 points, two rebounds and three assists) in 25 minutes. Follow @dklive on twitter or download the DK Live app to get Tyler Herro updates before the 7 p.m. lock. If Herro suits up, then consider pivoting to Jalen Suggs or paying up.
Other Options: Jalen Suggs ($3,800)
Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Memphis Grizzlies, $8,000 — This is a GPP play, as Edwards has proved to be a boom-or-bust player. After a massive 66.3 DKFP game against the Warriors (48 points, five rebounds and five assists), Edwards has failed to go over 40 DKFP in his last four games. However, this is a get-right spot, as Memphis is one of the fastest-teams in the NBA and they rank 29th in defensive efficiency. The Grizzlies boost the production of the SG/SF position by 10% and they could be without several key defenders.
Other Options: Donovan Mitchell ($8,700)
Kevin Huerter, Atlanta Hawks vs. Charlotte Hornets, $3,800 — It’s very close between Huerter and Desmond Bane for the best value play at shooting guard on Saturday night. Bane will see a boost in minutes and usage, and will likely be the safer but higher owned player. Huerter is risky because he is shot dependent, but his shot was falling in his last game — 5-7 3P for 19 points with five rebounds and two assists in 31.8 minutes. While SF De’Andre Hunter remains out, Huerter should continue to start at the three and play over 30 minutes each night. Also, this is a pace-up game in a matchup with the Hornets.
Other Options: Desmond Bane ($4,500)
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Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics vs. Oklahoma City Thunder, $9,900 — When Jaylen Brown went down, Tatum responded with a 57.3 DKFP performance on Nov. 6, but then he slightly cooled off and put up acceptable numbers in the next four contests (51.5, 48.8, 26.5 and 46.5 DKFP). He’s heating back up with 55.3 DKFP on Wednesday and 64.8 DKFP on Friday. The difference between his good nights and great nights is whether his shot is falling, and in a matchup with the Thunder, who boost the fantasy production of SG/SF by 12%, his shot should fall. There is a catch, or two actually. One, Boston is a -10.5 favorite and this could limit Tatum’s production, or it could mean that Tatum is destined to produce. Two, Tatum could draw the defense of Lu Dort ($5,000), one of the best defenders in the league.
Other Options: Jimmy Butler ($9,700)
Franz Wagner, Orlando Magic at Milwaukee Bucks, $4,300 — Pricing can be strange. Wagner has started for the Magic all season, but recently his price has dropped $1,000 despite his increase in minutes. It seems that DFS players were tired of Wagner doing little in the fantasy department and stopped rostering him. The decrease in ownership combined with large slates reduced his salary. With a lower price tag, Wagner has hit 6.7, 6.3 and 7.3x value in his last three games. Wagner hasn’t change his play nor is he hot, he’s just too cheap.
Other Options: Ziaire Williams ($3,100)
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Orlando Magic, $11,900 — Power forward might be a pay-down spot tonight. Antetokounmpo is a fine play. He has scored 66.3 DKFP in each of his last two games, and unsurprisingly those outputs coincide with the return of Khris Middleton ($7,800). While many expected Antetokounmpo to be a monster with Middleton and Brooks Lopez out, the fact is that this team is more productive with their best players on the court — imagine that. Orlando’s defense ranks 26th in defensive efficiency and they boost the fantasy production of PF/C by 13%. However, this might be a pay-down spot because the Bucks are large favorites (-11) on a back-to-back, it’s uncertain how many minutes Antetokounmpo will log on Saturday night
Other Options: Jaren Jackson Jr. ($6,400)
P.J. Tucker, Miami Heat at Washington Wizards, $3,7000 — It’s never fun to roster P.J. Tucker and fortunately there are other value options at power forward for those among us that have been scarred in the past. However, if some of the Heat are unable to suit up, then Tucker will be very popular. Bam Adebayo ($8,500, questionable) returned to the lineup on Thursday, but Tucker still played 31.8 minutes and scored 15 points on three 3-pointers. The threes falling were crucial to his success, but that’s how GPPs are won. Playing it safe with players that consistently fill peripheral categories is a good way to cash, but first place goes to the bold DFS players that roll the dice with three-point shooters.
Other Options: Grant Williams ($3,100), Rudy Gay ($3,500)
Clint Capela, Atlanta Hawks vs. Charlotte Hornets, $7,200 — Let’s save a couple bucks at center. Over the last five games, Capela has averaged 33.0 minutes, 39.4 DKFP, 13.6 points, 13.2 rebounds, two assists and 1.2 blocks. On Saturday night, he’ll face a team that ranks 25th in defensive efficiency and plays at the sixth-fastest pace. The Hornets have allowed the most rebound points to opposing centers, and the second-most fantasy points overall to the position.
Other Options: Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,100)
Jeremiah Robinson-Earl, Oklahoma City Thunder at Boston Celtics ($3,400) — Last night, Robinson-Earl burned a lot of DFS players with 13.5 DKFP in 27.9 minutes of action. His shooting wasn’t off. Although 3-7 from the field isn’t great, that’s what should be expected from the Thunder center. The problem was that he collected two rebounds and was without an assist. Let everyone overreact and swear off this value play. Robinson-Earl has averaged 1.0 FPPM over the last five games. Last night’s performance could have simply been a matter of the matchup with the unique front court of Bobby Portis and Giannis Antetokounmpo. That being said, Al Horford ($7,600) tends to play near the perimeter and this could limit Robinson-Earl’s rebound opportunities on Saturday night.
Other Options: Jarred Vanderbilt ($3,800)
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