Welcome to the Daily Fantasy Sports NBA FanDuel Top Daily Plays. This article will be featured daily, Monday through Friday during the regular season. I will rank the players according to overall value, with FanDuel’s scoring/salary in mind. These can typically be used on all sites, but use some common sense if another site scores differently or has a different salary. Remember, this is only a guide, and several factors may influence who you should select each day.
We have a small, four game slate to work with on this second Tuesday of the new year. Let's go ahead and take a look at some of my favorite options to use on tonight's slate.
Tonight there's basically two routes we can go at point guard in cash games. You can either pay up for Westbrook ($11,800) and then go value with either Shabazz Napier ($4,800) or Delon Wright ($4,800) or you can just use both value point guards. Personally, I like going the Westbrook route because raw points are crucial on small slates like tonight. It's very well possible that Westbrook scores at least 15 more FanDuel points than any other player on the slate. If that happens and you do not use him, good luck cashing. As far as Napier versus Wright, I prefer the former. Napier has been excellent in six games over the past couple of weeks without Lillard. In those six games, Napier is averaging 37.7 FanDuel points and has not scored less than 29 FanDuel points. Wright has flashed some upside at times off of the bench, but we just do not know how much of a bump Wright is going to receive in Kyle Lowry's absence. As far as we know, Fred VanVleet ($3,600) could get equal time on the court or close to it. For that reason, I think VanVleet is an interesting GPP pivot from the masses who may gravitate towards Wright. Outside of those the cash game options, the only other person who is on my radar is De'Aaron Fox ($5,600). George Hill and Frank Mason have already been ruled out, so Fox should be locked in to 30-35 minutes against the Lakers who have allowed the third-most FanDuel points to opposing point guards.
At shooting guard, it is all about the two options at the top for me tonight. Both DeMar DeRozan ($9,300) and C.J. McCollum ($7,500) are both in line for a huge usage percentage increase with Kyle Lowry and Damian Lillard out for their respective teams. If you are looking to go a different route than either of those two, consider Wesley Matthews ($5,500) and Buddy Hield ($4,700). Matthews has been extremely solid lately with at least 25.7 FanDuel points in five out of his last six games of the season. Believe it or not, but the Mavericks actually own the highest projected team total on tonight's slate, so you want to have some exposure there. As far as Hield, he should be in a similar boat as Fox and locked in to 25-30 minutes due the injuries in their backcourt.
Small forward is a tough spot to peg tonight and it greatly depends on what you decide to do at other positions and whether or not some injury news pops up between now and tip-off. At the top we have Paul George ($8,300) who is finally settling in with his new team, who is averaging 41 FanDuel points over his last seven games. As far as the mid-priced options are concerned, I think both Harrison Barnes ($6,800) and Josh Richardson ($5,600) are solid options to consider. Barnes has a solid matchup against the Magic, who have really struggled on defense this season, and Richardson has not missed a beat despite Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside returning to the Heat lineup after sitting out a few games with injuries. There's really not any solid value options at small forward tonight unless we hear that Jonathon Simmons will be sitting out again for the Magic. If he does miss another game, it would put Mario Hezonja squarely in play as a solid value option.
Power forward is probably the worst position tonight. Aaron Gordon ($8,300) is the top-priced option on tonight's slate, but I do not think I will be using him tonight since I would rather spend up at other positions. It's all about the mid-priced options for me tonight. I will likely be focusing my attention on Kelly Olynyk ($6,000), Serge Ibaka ($5,900) and James Johnson ($5,700) who are all in decent spots and who have been solid cash game options as of late.
Center is another position that is lacking a clear-cut no brainer option, with Hassan Whiteside ($7,600) as the highest priced option on the slate. I think Whiteside makes an interesting GPP option since he is capable of posting 5+ blocks on any night, but I will be avoiding him for my cash game lineup. For cash, I will likely be using either Jusuf Nurkic ($7,500) or Bismack Biyombo ($5,600). Nurkic is another player who sees a significant usage percentage boost with Lillard off of the court and Biyombo has been extremely reliable over the past six games while Nikola Vucevic has been nursing a broken bone in his left hand.