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.
Tonight's slate does not offer many top dollar options at the point guard position, so most people will either be using Damian Lillard ($9,300), Kyrie Irving ($8,200) or both. Out of those two, I prefer the salary saving of Irving. There is not a whole lot of solid value on tonight's slate, so we can really use the $1,100 savings from Lillard. Also, Lillard and Trail Blazers have a high chance of blowing out the Suns who should be extremely short-handed due to injuries.
If you dip down into the mid-tier, consider using either Jeff Teague ($6,900) or Dennis Smith Jr. ($6,500). This will be Teague's fourth game since returning from an injury. Teague was only limited to 25 minutes in his first game back, but has played 32 and 28 minutes in his past two games and has put up 37.8 and 39.2 FanDuel points. His salary is still slightly depressed since before he injured himself so tonight would be a good opportunity to use him before his salary settles in above $7,000. Smith is the other mid-tier option you should consider tonight. It finally appears that the Mavericks are set on making him their primary point guard, averaging 30 minutes and 33.7 FanDuel points over his past eight games. Tonight he has an outstanding matchup against the Nuggets, who have allowed the second-most FanDuel points to opposing point guards this season.
There are not too many cheap point guard options on my radar tonight, but if you want to go that route Yogi Ferrell is a decent option to consider. He has been starting alongside Smith over the past week which has resulted in at least 33 minutes on the court in each of his past three games.
The top three priced shooting guard options on tonight's slate are C.J.McCollum ($8,200), Devin Booker ($7,800), and Jrue Holiday ($7,500). I think you can use any of these three guys, but I think the better route for roster construction is to either go with two mid-tier options or even punt with a cheap option.
The two mid-salary options I'm considering tonight are Gary Harris ($6,500) and Wesley Matthews ($5,200). Harris has taken a ton of shot attempts this season, averaging 13.2 attempts per game. Wesley Matthews has really settled in nicely over the past couple of weeks, averaging 27.3 FanDuel points over his past nine games. Similar to point guard, the Nuggets have really struggled against opposing shooting guards, allowing the second-most FanDuel points per game.
There is one option who I am considering as a punt option tonight and that is Devin Harris ($3,500). He is not going to light the world on fire by any means tonight, but with only four games on the slate we have to take a chance on value somewhere. Since the Nuggets do struggle against opposing backcourts, it's not out of the question for Harris to get us between 15 and 20 FanDuel points, which we would gladly take at this salary if it can help us spend up somewhere else.
It starts at the top for me tonight at small forward. Jimmy Butler ($9,400) owns the highest salary by a large margin of $2,600 and he is in a great spot against the Magic, who have really struggled on defense lately. Even with Teague back in action, Butler has been solid so we should not worry about diminished production. Small forward does get pretty ugly once we go further down in salary, so I strongly suggest putting Butler in your lineup.
We did have some value open up this afternoon when the Suns announced that T.J. Warren and Marquess Chriss would both miss tonight's game. This means that Josh Jackson ($5,200) will be in the starting lineup and he very well could see between 30 and 35 minutes. Although the matchup is not great by any means against Evan Turner, the increase in minutes and usage should definitely offset the matchup. Speaking of Turner ($4,100), he is also in consideration tonight if you are not going with either of the two previously mentioned options I suggested. Turner is usually pretty active on the defensive side of the ball, so we can normally pencil him in for at least a couple of steals or blocks.
Similar to small forward, we have a top-dollar option in Anthony Davis ($11,000) and then a huge drop off of $3,500 to the next highest priced option. Unlike small forward though, there are a handful of mid-priced options I really like, so I do not think I will be using Davis tonight unless it is in a GPP contest.
A couple of the mid-priced options I like tonight are Taj Gibson ($5,600) and Jayson Tatum ($5,600). Both of these guys typically play a ton of minutes and they both a pretty safe on any given night for cash games. I would probably choose one of these options and then drop down to my favorite value option at power forward.
In addition to Jackson, Dragan Bender will benefit greatly from the absence of Chriss and Warren. Bender stunk it up on Sunday when Chriss sat out, but I would not put too much weight on that performance since Bender did pretty well in the previous two games before that when Chriss missed. Bender has an outstanding matchup against the Trail Blazers, who have allowed the third-most FanDuel points to opposing power forwards. Even though the Trail Blazers are double digit favorites and this game very well could result in a blow out, I still like Bender. He should still get plenty of minutes in that scenario since the Suns are really thin on their roster.
I recommend not getting too cute at center tonight. since it is the deepest position on the slate. You will have a huge uphill battle in your contests tonight if you take a flier on a cheap center and he does not absolutely crush it. The odds of DeMarcus Cousins ($11,200), Karl-Anthony Towns ($9,500), Nikola Jokic ($9,700), and Jusuf Nurkic ($7,000) all flopping tonight are pretty high.
Another reason I why I do not really want to use Davis tonight is because I would much rather use his teammate, DeMarcus Cousins ($11,200). Cousins has been arguably one of the most consistent center options to use in DFS this season, and his upside on every single night is tremendous since he is capable of filling every single stat on the sheet on both sides of the ball. The Celtics are known for having a pretty stout defensive unit, but overall they have only been middle of the pack against opposing centers this season. If you do not use Cousins, all three of the previously mentioned options are all in good spots and can be used as well.