SF/PF: LeBron James: (11,000)
LeBron put up 61.75 DK points in the final matchup with his old friend Dwyane Wade on Monday and he is now averaging 59 DK PPG in his last four. Brandon Ingram (ankle) and Rajon Rondo (hand) have missed each of these games and both will be out again tonight. When the two of them have been off the floor this season, James has garnered a team high 34.3% usage rate, which is a 2.2% increase. (1.6 DK PPM) Tonight, he heads to Houston, to face The Rockets, who are the 5th worst rated defense in The NBA.
This game has a small spread of 5.5 points and a slate high O/U game total of 225 points. In the 22 Laker games that Vegas has given a single digit spread and a total of 220 points or more this season, The King is scoring 56 DK PPG, which is right over five times value at his current price. This doesn’t factor in the elevated usage he has been seeing and LeBron should have a 60+ DK point showing in this Western Conference showdown.
PG/SG: De’Anthony Melton: (4,900)
With Elie Okobo sent down to The G League and Devin Booker still nursing a hamstring injury, Melton rose to the occasion, and scored a career best 37.75 DK points in Tuesday night’s loss to The Spurs. He posted a season high 28.8% usage rate in this contest and logged 33.14 minutes. The rookie is now averaging 31.3 DK PPG since being promoted to the starting five, three games ago.
With no signs of Okobo being recalled from The G league and Booker still on the shelf, Melton will start, and should see 30+ minutes tonight vs The Mavs. He is producing 1.0 DK PPM and with this type of role, Melton is easily the best point per dollar value of the night, that should supply 25+ DK points.
PG: Jalen Brunson: (4,300)
Brunson let us down last night (10 DK points vs The Hawks), but I think we have to go right back to the well for Thursday’s small slate. Dennis Smith Jr. (questionable, wrist) is considered to be closer to doubtful and J.J. Barea (questionable, ankle) left last night’s game and never returned. I doubt either PG plays and even if Barea did, Brusnon would still start, sans DSJ. Brunson is scoring a decent 0.74 DK PPM and in the three previous games before last night, the rookie was producing 27 DK PPG in 29 MPG.
He should hover right around 30 minutes if Barea is active, with room for more, if the veteran PG is forced to sit. All in all, Brunson is simply too cheap for a starting PG going against this 29th ranked Suns’ defense. He should get us at least 20 DK points, with 30+ upside.
SF/PF: Kyle Kuzma: (7,600)
Kuz is on a serious roll right now. He has scored over 40 DK points in six straight games, but still costs under $8,000. His usage also rises 2.2% with Rondo/Ingram off the floor and his playing time has been much higher recently, logging 36.25 MPG in these last six, compared to the 29 MPG he was seeing the ten prior.
The Lakers have won five of these last six games and even though his individual matchup doesn’t rate well (HOU is a 0.12 opponent +/-), Kuzma should top five times value, with a ceiling close to 50 DK points.
C: Nikola Vucevic: (8,900)
From his game log, it looks like Vuc’s production has dramatically slowed down (under 40 DK points in back to back games), but both of these last two have been blowouts, limiting his minutes to under 30 in each contest. Before this, he was scoring 53.12 DK PPG in his last six. Tonight, if The Magic don’t blowout The Bulls (ORL -5.5), Vuc should dominate this front-court. (4.4 opponent +/-)
SG/SF: Demar DeRozan: (8,500)
DeRozan was also a victim of a blowout his last time out. (20.5 DK points in only 25 minutes on Tuesday) He was scoring 54.25 DK PPG in the previous three and tonight’s matchup vs The Clippers is projected to stay close. (SA -2.5) This game also has a total of 221.5 points and in the eight Spurs’ games that have had a total of 220+ points and a spread under ten this season, DeRozan is averaging 50 DK PPG.
C: Clint Capela: (8,200)
Capela is in an awesome spot vs The Lakers (3.12 opponent +/-) and when he has matched up with an opponent +/- over 3.0 points, he is scoring 40.5 DK PPG this season.
SF/PF: Tobias Harris: (7,300)
Harris is a decent spot vs The Spurs (1.76 opponent +/-) and he is just underpriced for his 37.2 DK PPG average this season.
SF/PF: T.J. Warren: (5,800)
Warren looked fine in his first full game back (got ejected after 12 minutes on Monday), scoring 33.5 DK points in only 24.5 minutes vs The Spurs on Tuesday. If this game can stay somewhat close, Warren should easily eclipse 30 DK points. He sees a team high 4.1% usage increase in this current situation for The Suns and scores 1.0 DK PPM.
PG/SG: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: (4,700)
SGA should have to play 30+ without Lou Williams. (hamstring) He scores 0.8 DK PPM this season and is averaging 34 DK PPG in the past three he has topped 30 minutes. Plus, The Spurs are 27th in defensive efficiency, and have struggled with PGs all year. (1.89 opponent +/-)
SF/PF: Jonathon Isaac: (4,200)
Isaac drew the start with Evan Fournier (personal) out on Monday and even with Fournier back tonight, Isaac will stay a starter, over Jonathan Simmons. Isaac played 27 minutes in Monday’s loss to The Mavs and if he sees 25+ again (0.84 DK PPM), he has a chance at value, vs this awful Bulls’ defense. (22nd in efficiency) In the last six contests he has logged 25 minutes or more, Isaac is averaging a decent 20.3 DK PPG.
PG/SG: Josh Hart: (4,200)
Hart is scoring 22.3 DK PPG and playing 35.4 MPG in these last three without Rondo and Ingram. He has a wide range of outcome, but with this kind of minutes, he has a decent chance of returning five times value.
SG/SF: Mikal Bridges: (3,800)
Bridges has played over 30 minutes in three straight (22.25 DK PPG) and should continue to do so tonight. He lacks upside, but is a viable punt, that could salvage 20+ DK points.
PG/SG: Patrick Beverly: (3,500)
Beverly only played 20 minutes on Tuesday without Williams (7.25 DK points), but this was a blowout, and in the game before this, he played 33.5 minutes vs The Suns (18.75 DK points), after Williams got hurt. (only played 12 minutes) He is an average fantasy player (0.76 DK PPM) and the ceiling is low, but the higher expected minutes bring Beverly into the punt conversation.
*Please note some of these stats are from FantasyLabs.com