It’s Friday night and we have a seven-game slate over on DraftKings. There are plenty of fantasy-friendly matchups to target, as the Nets, Suns, Kings, and Lakers are all in action. My approach is going to be trying to creatively attack these teams with a mix of chalk plays like Nikola Jokic and more contrarian value plays like Corey Joseph.
As always, identifying great value is going to be key to building a winning lineup and affording players like Jokic and Devin Booker on tonight’s slate. I am going to identify my two favorite plays, regardless of price, at each position and then a few value plays that can help round out our lineups.
Devin Booker (ORL): $8,500 at DEN
Booker has caught fire over the past three games, averaging 49.75 DK points while putting up 21 shot attempts per game. Despite Gary Harris‘ strong defensive real plus-minus (DRPM), 10th out of 105 SGs, the Nuggets have given up the second-most points to shooting guards this season. This inconsistency is mainly due to the Nuggets ranking 20th in defensive efficiency rating as a team. Booker’s recent form and elite 30.4% usage rate are very tough to ignore. The matchup on paper looks tough, but Booker is one of my favorite players to pay up for on tonight’s slate.
Gary Harris (DEN): $6,800 vs. PHX
Since I am going to play Devin Booker in this matchup, I am planning to run it back with Harris on the Nuggets side of the ball. Harris has averaged 37.2 DK points over the past four games and the Nuggets are expected to be without Jamal Murray again tonight, which gives a boost to the other Nuggets starters. The Suns are also notoriously bad on defense, ranking 29th in defensive efficiency rating. While Devin Booker may be an elite offensive talent, he is certainly not dominant on the defensive end, ranking 98th out of 105 SGS in DRPM. Harris is in a great spot to produce against a Suns team that has allowed the fourth-most DK points to shooting guards this season. He will be a strong pivot off of Will Barton in tonight’s game.
Cory Joseph (IND): $4,000 at LAL
The Pacers continue their west coast trip against the Lakers on Friday night and Joseph finds himself in an elite matchup. The Pacers’ guards will get a huge boost as the Lakers will be without Lonzo Ball, who is ranked third out of 97 PGs in DRPM this season. Tyler Ennis is a decent defender, but Corey Joseph should see a ton of Jordan Clarkson off of the bench in this matchup, who ranks 85th out of 97 PGs in DRPM. Outside of a down game last night, Joseph had strung together two strong games in a row, averaging 27.6 DK points across 27.7 minutes per game. He also will get a bump in usage with the second unit, as Lance Stephenson is expected to miss tonight’s game. With Victor Oladipo‘s $9,600 price tag making him tough to play, Joseph is a great tournament play that will get us exposure to the Pacers.
Josh Richardson (MIA): $6,200 at BKN
Richardson was a trendy DFS play a few weeks ago but his ownership has dropped off since the return of Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside. Despite the lack of ownership, Richardson is still in good form and has averaged 31.4 DK points over the past three games. The Nets rank 18th in defensive efficiency rating this season but they are ranked dead last in DK points allowed to small forwards. With the Nets playing at the fifth-fastest pace in the league, this seems like a spot where Whiteside will be run off the floor, which should give a nice boost to secondary players like Richardson. He offers a safe floor and has 40+ DK point upside in tonight’s matchup.
Brandon Ingram (LAL): $6,900 vs. IND
Ingram has struggled mightily over the past two games, averaging 15.9 DK points while only attempting nine shots from the field. However, Ingram was squaring up against Mavericks and Thunder defenses that have given up the third and seventh-fewest DK points to small forwards respectively this season. Tonight’s matchup against the Pacers is much friendlier, as they rank 26th in DK points to SFs and Bojan Bogdanovic is ranked 83rd out of 85 SFs in DRPM. Ingram should have relatively low ownership in a plus home matchup against a Pacers team playing on the second half of a road back-to-back.
JaMychal Green (MEM): $5,300 vs. SAC
Green has been in phenomenal form over the past four games, averaging 32.5 DK points while grabbing 10.8 rebounds per game. The Grizzles are playing a Kings team that is ranked 26th in DK points allowed to PFs and 28th in overall rebounding percentage. If Marc Gasol misses another game tonight, Green would stand to be one of the biggest beneficiaries. In 144.9 minutes without Gasol on the court this season, Green sees a massive 5.3% increase in usage and a 0.18 boost in DK points per minute. Green’s recent form and potential increase in opportunity make him a great value on tonight’s slate.
Nikola Jokic (DEN): $9,500 vs. PHX
Jokic has been one of the hottest centers in the league over the past few weeks, putting up an average of 47.9 DK points over the past six games. The Nuggets are projected to score 113.25 points in tonight’s game and the Suns have given up the sixth-most DK points to centers this season. In a matchup against the Suns two weeks ago, Jokic put up 38.8 DK points on just six shot attempts from the field. Over the past six games, Jokic has been aggressive and averaged 16.5 shot attempts per game. He offers 60 DK point upside against the Suns tonight.
Domantas Sabonis (IND): $6,400 vs. LAL
With Myles turner out of the Pacers lineup, Sabonis hasn’t flashed as high of a ceiling as initially expected. While he has been solid over the past four games, averaging 29.4 DK points, he’s lacked consistent 35-40 DK point upside. Even though Turner’s injury hasn’t led to an uptick in production just yet, Sabonis is still seeing an increase in opportunity. In 869.1 minutes without Turner on the floor this season, Sabonis has the second highest usage rate on the team (24.4%) behind Victor Oladipo. Tonight’s matchup against the Lakers is as good as any to get back on track, as they are ranked 29th in DK points allowed to opposing centers.