It’s Saturday night and we have a six-game slate over on FanDuel. There are a few exciting matchups on the board tonight as the Cavaliers play the Nuggets at home and the Thunder travel to Portland to take on the Blazers. Both games have relatively high totals, so having exposure to star players in these matchup’s will be key. With players like Lebron James ($12,200) and Russell Westbrook ($11,200) sitting at the top of the pricing pool in these games, we’re going to need value across our lineups.
Here are a few value plays, $5,500 or less, at each position that will allow us to free up some salary we can afford our stud players.
George Hill (CLE): $4,800 vs. DEN
In terms of inconsistency, Hill has certainly been the face of it over the past few weeks. In his past four games, Hill has fantasy outings of 17.1, 45.1, 8.9, and 30.9 FD points. So, which Hill are we going to get tonight? Based on the matchup, it should be the good one. The Nuggets are ranked 23rd in FD points allowed to PGs and Jamal Murray is a horrendous individual defender, ranking 92nd out of 99 PGs in DRPM this season. Hill’s strongest games over the past few weeks came in plus matchups against the Nets and Grizzlies, so he should be able to string together a strong performance against the Nuggets tonight.
Dwayne Wade (MIA): $4,800 vs. DET
Wade has been playing some great basketball over the past two games, averaging 35.9 FD points across 25.3 minutes per game. With Wayne Ellington and Tyler Johnson both doubtful for tonight’s game, Wade should push for 25+ minutes again. If we take both of these players off the floor for the Heat, Wade has an insane 39.2% usage rate and averages 1.44 FD points per minute across 50.5 minutes. The usage spike represents a 7.3% bump, while the FD point increase is +0.34 per minute. While the matchup against the Pistons is average at best, 12th in defensive efficiency rating this season, Wade’s projected usage makes him too strong of a play to pass up at his current price tag.
Jaylen Brown (BOS): $5,300 at HOU
If you’re looking for a lower-ceiling, safe-floor option at the shooting guard position, Brown fits the bill. Over the past five games, Brown has averaged 25.6 FD points without exceeding 30 FD points in any game, which has put his production right near his price tag every single night. Overall, the matchup against the Rockets is favorable as they rank 19th in FD points allowed to shooting guards. On top of that, James Harden is not an MVP candidate for his defense, as he has a -0.50 DRPM rating this season. The key here for Brown is foul trouble. If he can avoid fouls against Harden, this is a decent spot for him to produce due to the Celtics’ projected bump in pace.
Reggie Bullock (DET): $4,600 at MIA
While he may not be the most exciting play to roster, Bullock has been a source of cheap production over the past few weeks. Bullock has averaged 23.5 FD points over the past nine games and he has exceeded 13 actual points in every one of them. Tonight’s matchup against the Heat is certainly not favorable, as they rank 13th in FD points allowed to SGs, but Bullock’s ability to score makes him a decent option at his price tag. He is also sure to have an ownership level lower than 10%.
Al-Farouq Aminu (POR): $5,200 vs. OKC
Aminu has been a bit inconsistent over the past four games, averaging 22.0 FD points, but a matchup against the Thunder is actually a perfect way to get back on track. The Thunder are ranked ninth in FD points allowed to PGs this season, but Carmelo Anthony is a weak individual defender that ranks 81stout of 91 PFs in DRPM this season. For Aminu, this is a spot where we can project him to play 30+ minutes against a high-powered Thunder offense. While Ed Davis has had two strong games in a row, I’m more inclined to fade him and take a chance on Aminu’s safer minutes floor. With his price sitting below $5,000, Aminu makes a ton of sense for tournament lineups tonight.
Tristan Thompson (CLE): $4,500 vs. DEN
There aren’t a ton of cheap options at the center position tonight, so Tristan Thompson makes the most sense in terms of value. Over the past three games, Thompson has put up 23.0 FD points per game and has a safer minute’s floor, around 22-24, then other cheap center options tonight. The Nuggets are ranked 15th in FD points allowed to centers this season, but Thompson’s production generally comes on the glass and the Cavaliers will need his defense against Nikola Jokic tonight. He doesn’t have a high ceiling, so he may be better suited for cash games.