What’s up everyone. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings NBA sleeper picks for January 5th, 2017. Thursday night’s slate is a great slate with eight games on tap. Be sure to follow all the injury news up until the 7:00 PM EST lock tonight, to see if any new injury news comes up. As always if any of these picks help you win or if you need any advice, let me know on Twitter Hunta512.
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PF: Ryan Anderson: (5,800) The Rockets want Anderson on the court more with starting center Clint Capela out, but blowout victories have held him back from seeing heavier minutes over the last few weeks. Outside of a tough matchup vs The Spurs, out of the last nine games, there were three games that Rockets haven’t won by double digit. In those three close match-ups, Anderson is averaging a terrific 44.25 DK points in a high 35.3 minutes. Tonight I think we see him approach 35 minutes again in a competitive matchup vs The Thunder.
Even though Vegas has this game with a spread of 8.5 points in favor of The Rockets, I think it should be a tight game throughout, with old teammates Russell Westbrook and James Harden going head to head in this high scoring affair. If Anderson logs heavy minutes tonight, he should be very active vs this Thunder defense that allows the 6th most DK points to PFs this year. Outside of the obvious plays of Harden and Westbrook, I think Anderson is my favorite target from this game that has the highest O/U of the night at 226 points. He has great upside in this game environment and is a nice way to get exposure to this high total at low expected ownership of 5-8%. (VIA Fantasy Labs)
PF: Jon Leuer: (4,800) With back up center Aaron Baynes out (ankle), Leuer should see a few extra minutes tonight vs The Hornets. With Baynes out on Tuesday night, Leuer scored 26.75 DK points in 34 minutes of action. The 34 minutes was a nice jump from his season average of 27.3 minutes a night. Tonight he should play over 30 minutes again in a tough matchup against The Hornets who give up the 10th fewest DK points to PFs this season.
But regardless of this ugly matchup, the minutes increase makes him an immense value at his cheap price. He scores 0.86 DK points per minute and if he plays the 30-35 minutes that we are expecting, he will easily return over fives times value. At a cheap price of $4,800, he is one of the best overall values of this slate and is viable in all formats on Thursday night.
C: Jusuf Nurkic: (3,600) With PF Kenneth Faried out the last two games (back), Nurkic has been phenomenal off the bench, averaging 32.25 DK points in these past two games. In these contests he played 21 minutes and 18 minutes, which is a slight increase from his 15.8 minutes average for the month of December. He is always effective whenever he is on the floor averaging an elite 1.12 DK points per minute this season.
Faried is currently listed as questionable for tonight’s game vs The Spurs (16th vs Centers) and with this game being one of the later games of the night (9:00 PM EST) I don’t think we will have confirmation if he is playing or not before roster lock. This should keep Nurkic’s ownership low which is great news for his GPP stock. His value obviously takes a huge hit when Faried is active, but I think he is the worth risk in GPPs at his very cheap $3,600 salary.
Also Consider: D”Angelo Russell (has played over 30 minutes in three straight games), Victor Oladipo, Steve Adams (has seen heavier minutes last two games, has been excellent scoring 41 and 42 DK points), Trevor Booker, Monta Ellis (sees a slight bump with Stuckey out, great matchup vs The Nets), Buddy Hield, Jonas Valancuinas (if Patterson out), Caris Levert, Frank Kaminksy/Spencer Hawes (if Cody Zeller remains out), Isaiah Whitehead, Thomas Robinson, and Montrezl Harrell.