Russell Westbrook, Washington Wizards vs. Indiana Pacers, $11,000 - Westbrook’s current salary simply doesn’t reflect how well he has been playing. The former MVP has notched five triple-doubles in his last eight starts and is scoring 64.2 DKFP per game during this run. At his price tag for Monday night, Westbrook only needs 55 DKFP to return five-times value, and he will be at home tonight, where the point guard is averaging 57.8 DKFP per game since joining the Wizards.
Westbrook is an appealing high-end spend for any format — that would enter must-play status if Bradley Beal (questionable, hip) is unable to suit up. Given the All-Star shooting guard has also been dealing with a foot injury, there is a real possibility the team gives him the night off Monday. Whenever Westbrook has been on the floor without Beal, the 32-year-old’s usage has jumped 8.2 percentage points and his assist percentage has leaped 6.3 percentage points. The last time the Wizards were without Beal for a full game, Westbrook went nuts for 80.5 DKFP.
Other Options: James Harden ($10,900), De’Aaron Fox ($9,500), John Wall ($8,300)
Saben Lee, Detroit Pistons vs. Toronto Raptors, $3,800 - With Delon Wright traded to Sacramento, and both Dennis Smith Jr. (back) and Rodney McGruder (elbow) out Saturday, Lee drew the spot start at point for Detroit, chipping in with 25.25 DKFP across 24 minutes vs. the Wizards. The 21-year-old should receive another start Monday with Smith Jr. already ruled out and McGruder doubtful to play vs. the Raptors, who rank 22nd in defensive rating over their last 10 games.
Lee may not be a household name, but the rookie out of Vanderbilt has performed well when his number has been called on this season. For the eight instances Lee has logged 20 minutes or more, the guard has been very solid with 25.5 DKFP per game. If officially announced the starting point guard again, Lee will be a viable punt play to consider for this full slate.
Other Options: Kemba Walker ($6,800), Ricky Rubio ($6,200)
Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets vs. Minnesota Timberwolves, $9,800 - After missing the past three games for personal reasons, Irving returns to the Nets at a great time with a soft Wolves’ defense in town Monday. Up until this point of the season, Minnesota ranks fourth-to-last in defensive efficiency, and Irving should be fresh and ready to torch them. The last time Irving returned after a long layoff was right after the All-Star break, and he erupted for a season-high 59.50 DKFP vs. the Celtics in that one.
The guard had topped 50 DKFP in back-to-back tilts before tending to this recent personal matter, and he is absolutely a threat to reach that total again Monday.
Other Options: Donovan Mitchell ($9,200), Paul George ($8,500), Fred VanVleet ($7,900)
Nickeil Alexander-Walker, New Orleans Pelicans vs. Boston Celtics, $5,800 - Lonzo Ball (hip) is listed as questionable, but I believe the point guard will miss at least one more game. He attempted to practice this past Thursday, but checked himself out midway through the session when he reaggravated his injury. The team was then quick to call him doubtful for the Pelicans’ next two. In the likely scenario Ball is out again Monday, Alexander-Walker will continue to be a premier value play.
The 22-year-old has taken over as New Orleans’ starting point guard with Ball sidelined, producing 33.5 DKFP per game on 33.8 minutes a night and a 23% usage rate. This meeting vs. the Celtics presents one of the most fantasy-friendly environments of the night (230.5 O/U game total via DraftKings Sportsbook), and NAW would be a lock for over 30 DKFP in the event Ball isn’t ready to return.
Other Options: Kevin Porter Jr. ($6,400), Derrick White ($5,900)
Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles Clippers vs. Milwaukee Bucks, $8,900 - Without a doubt, the marquee matchup of Monday’s 11-game slate is Clippers vs. Bucks. DraftKings Sportsbook currently has this clash of title contenders listed with the smallest spread of the night (LAC -1). All of the starters in this national televised event should see elevated minutes, and Leonard is way too cheap for this type of atmosphere.
When he has competed in a spread under five this season, the Klaw has provided 46.3 DKFP per game, and the two-time NBA Finals MVP recorded 45.8 DKFP when the Clippers visited the Bucks last month.
Other Options: Luka Doncic ($10,800), DeMar DeRozan ($7,900), RJ Barrett ($7,200 - if Julius Randle is out)
Marcus Morris Sr., Los Angeles Clippers vs. Milwaukee Bucks, $4,500 - Just like with Leonard, Morris is underpriced for this elite setting vs. the Bucks. The forward has started at power forward in his last six, supplying 25.30 DKFP on 28.6 minutes per game. Morris has knocked down 3-pointers at a 48% clip as a starter. Overall, the veteran rarely disappoints when his role is healthy.
He is averaging 25.8 DKFP per game in the 18 contests he’s cracked 25 minutes this season, and Morris is a nice, cheap way to gain exposure to one of the top games of the night — one that shouldn’t gain much attention in GPPs.
Other Options: Josh Hart ($5,500), Deni Avdija ($3,400)
Zion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans vs. Boston Celtics, $8,800 - Williamson has been feasting, scoring 65.50 DKFP vs the Nuggets, then 51.25 DKFP vs. the Mavericks. His usage has spiked to 38% in these past two game, and Williamson has received the largest usage increase when Ball has been off the floor this season with a 3.3 percentage-point bump.
The second-year forward bullied the Celtics for 48.50 DKFP in his first meeting of the season with the club. While I prefer Williamson if Ball is inactive, the beast is still a viable target if the point guard is able to play.
Other Options: Domantas Sabonis ($9,600), Jayson Tatum ($8,600), Richaun Holmes ($7,600), Draymond Green ($6,900)
Trevor Ariza, Miami Heat vs. New York Knicks, $4,500 - After not playing in a single game for the Thunder, Ariza has logged over 30 minutes in these last two as a member of the Heat. Even with Jimmy Butler ($9,000) back in the fold Friday night, Ariza was terrific, posting 41.25 DKFP across 31 minutes vs. the Hornets. The 35-year-old looked like his old self, being a pest on the defensive end, tallying two blocks and two steals. With Kelly Olynyk now in Houston following Thursday’s trade deadline, Ariza should play right around 30 minutes on a nightly basis as Miami’s starting power forward.
Obviously, we can’t expect another 40-DKFP performance, but Ariza should be able to beat his low price point tonight with the starters role.
Other Options: Rui Hachimura ($5,900 - better if Beal is out), Kelly Olynyk ($4,400 - better if Christian Wood is out), Juancho Hernangomez ($3,700)
Karl-Anthony Towns, Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Brooklyn Nets, $9,900 - Towns finally appears to be over the side effects from having COVID-19. The Kentucky product has eclipsed 50 DKFP in six of his last ten starts, including his 56.25-DKFP showing vs. the Rockets on Saturday. He went north of 60 DKFP in three of those outbursts.
Now, Monday night delivers a juicy matchup against a Nets’ defense that has had major issues containing centers all season. As a group, Brooklyn ranks 26th in defensive efficiency, and they have yielded the ninth-most points in the paint per game. We have seen some huge outings from opposing centers in this spot, and Towns should continue the trend with nothing less than 50 DKFP on Monday.
Other Options: Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,700), Pascal Siakam ($7,800 - better if Kyle Lowry is out)
Moses Brown, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Dallas Mavericks, $6,800 - Saturday, the Thunder announced they will no longer play veteran Al Horford this season. In the wake of this news, Brown got the start at center for Oklahoma City and finished with a 21-point, 23-rebound double-double vs. the Celtics (50.25 DKFP). The following day, the 21-year-old and Oklahoma City agreed to a multi-year contract, solidifying Brown is their starting center going forward.
The 7-foot-2 big man out of UCLA is a great fantasy producer, amassing 1.26 DKFP per minute this year. He has flourished when given a decent sized opportunity, collecting 34 DKFP per game when he has surpassed the 20-minute threshold. As the team attempts to develop Brown as a player, he should play 30-plus minutes no matter if the tilt is close or not, making him a tough value to ignore Monday at $6,800.
Other Options: Robert Williams ($6,700), OG Anunoby ($6,300, better if Kyle Lowry is out), Steven Adams ($5,200), Nicolas Claxton ($4,200)
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