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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Targets, Values for April 23

Matt LaMarca gives his top studs and values at each position for Friday’s fantasy basketball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 7:30 p.m. ET.

It’s a relatively light basketball slate for a Friday. There are seven games to choose from starting at 7:30 p.m. ET, so let’s break down some of the top studs and values at each position to help you build your DraftKings lineups.


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Point Guard

Stud

Russell Westbrook, Washington Wizards at Oklahoma City Thunder ($11,000) – Westbrook has been on a tear recently. He’s returned value in each of his past 10 games, scoring at least 55.75 DKFP in each contest. He’s increased his production to 1.69 DKFP per minute over the past month, and he could be even more involved than usual with Rui Hachimura (knee) and Deni Avdija (ankle) out of the lineup.

Westbrook is also in a great spot vs. the Thunder. The Wizards lead the slate with an implied team total of 120.25 points, and the Thunder rank just 24th in defensive efficiency. This is also a potential revenge game for Westbrook, if you’re into that sort of thing.

Other Options – Stephen Curry ($10,300), Ja Morant ($7,200)

Value

Brandon Goodwin, Atlanta Hawks vs. Miami Heat ($3,400) – Goodwin will likely step into the starting lineup in place of the injured Trae Young (ankle), and Goodwin has thrived in that role this season. He’s played four games with both Young and De’Andre Hunter out of the lineup, and he’s averaged 24.1 DKFP over 30.3 minutes in those contests. He was even better in his past two starts, racking up 32.25 DKFP and 35.75 DKFP, respectively.

Other Options – Lou Williams ($4,300), Raul Neto ($3,400)


Shooting Guard

Stud

Paul George, Los Angeles Clippers at Houston Rockets ($9,300) – The Clippers are another team dealing with some injuries at the moment. Kawhi Leonard is sidelined indefinitely with a foot injury, while Serge Ibaka and Patrick Beverley remain out with long-term injuries. Rajon Rondo ($3,800) is also questionable with right wrist inflammation.

George rested in the Clippers’ last game, so he should be ready to carry a monster workload on Friday. He’s increased his usage rate to 35.9% with Leonard, Ibaka and Beverley off the court this season, resulting in an average of 1.37 DKFP per minute. He’s also averaged 53.25 DKFP in five full games with all three players out of the lineup.

Other Options – Kyrie Irving ($10,100), Marcus Smart ($6,900)

Value

Editor’s Note: Celtics SG/SF Jaylen Brown (shoulder) and PG Kemba Walker (rest) have been ruled out tonight vs. the Nets.

Romeo Langford, Boston Celtics at Brooklyn Nets ($3,000) – Langford has the potential to be an excellent value option today at the absolute minimum. He’s coming off 31.8 minutes yesterday vs. the Suns, and that was with Kemba Walker ($7,500) in the lineup. There’s a chance that Walker sits on the second leg of a back-to-back, and Jaylen Brown ($8,400; shoulder) is also not guaranteed to suit up after missing Thursday’s game. That would leave plenty of opportunity for Langford.

Other Options – Landry Shamet ($4,700), P.J. Dozier ($3,800)


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Small Forward

Stud

Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards at Oklahoma City Thunder ($9,600) – Small forward is not a position I’m particularly interested in paying up at on Friday, but Beal does have some appeal for the Wizards. He’s increased his usage rate by a team-high 4.1% with Hachimura and Avdija off the court this season, resulting in an average of 1.39 DKFP per minute. He’s also started to turn things around after a cold stretch, scoring at least 50.25 DKFP in two of his past three games.

Other Options – Michael Porter Jr. ($7,700), Kelly Oubre ($5,800)

Value

Editor’s Note: Warriors SF Kent Bazemore (health protocols) has been ruled out tonight vs. the Nuggets.

Kent Bazemore, Golden State Warriors vs. Denver Nuggets ($4,100) Kelly Oubre Jr. ($5,800) is back in the lineup for the Warriors, but Bazemore still saw a large workload in their last game. He played more than 35.2 minutes and racked up 52.25 DKFP, and while I wouldn’t expect that kind of production again, he can certainly return value on his current salary.

Other Options – Will Barton ($5,500), Kenrich Williams ($4,900; only if Lu Dort is ruled out)


Power Forward

Stud

Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics at Brooklyn Nets ($10,000) – $10K is a lot for Tatum, but I would still be interested in paying it if Brown and Walker are ruled out. He’s going to be asked to carry the offense in that situation, and he’s increased his usage rate by 6.2% with both players off the court this season. Tatum has averaged 1.35 DKFP per minute in that situation, and he’s played at least 37 minutes in five of his past eight games.

Other Options – Kevin Love ($6,500), Darius Bazley ($6,400)

Value

Davis Bertans, Washington Wizards at Oklahoma City Thunder ($4,300) – Bertans is one of the easiest plays on the slate. He’s scored at least 30.5 DKFP in back-to-back games since returning to the lineup, and his minutes should be solidified with Hachimura and Avdija ruled out. Bertans has averaged 1.02 DKFP per minute over the past month, so he can do a lot of damage with additional playing time.

Other Options – Blake Griffin ($4,900), Brandon Clarke ($3,900)


Center

Stud

Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets at Golden State Warriors ($10,900) – Jokic is coming off an uncharacteristically poor showing in his last outing, finishing with just 44.25 DKFP over 35.6 minutes vs. the Blazers. That said, there’s no reason to expect a repeat performance on Friday. He had scored at least 53.5 DKFP in each of his previous six contests, and he’s averaged 55.75 DKFP in 10 games without Jamal Murray (knee) this season. The Warriors are also an excellent matchup, ranking second in the league in pace, so Jokic is the clear option if you’re paying up at center.

Value

Jusuf Nurkic, Portland Trail Blazers vs. Memphis Grizzlies ($5,200) – Nurkic checks a lot of boxes on today’s slate. The Blazers own the second-highest implied team total, and they’re taking on a Grizzlies squad that is playing without their starting center. Nurkic also had his minute limit increased in his last contest, and he’s averaged 1.17 DKFP per minute this season. Add it all up, and he’s simply too cheap at $5.2K.

Other Options – Tristan Thompson ($4,900), DeAndre Jordan ($3,900), Daniel Gafford ($3,800)

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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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