We have a four-game slate over on FanDuel tonight to kick off our weekend. There are eight players priced above $9,000 with Kevin Durant sitting at the top at $10,600. The Wizards get a great home matchup against the Nets tonight and John Wall is priced at $10,500 to reflect it. Andre Drummond is also in a great spot in a road matchup against the Bulls at $9,900.
Since I am going to target Wall and Drummond tonight, we’ll need to build a lineup that has strong value. 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.
Delon Wright (TOR): $5,500 vs. GSW
Assuming Kyle Lowry (tailbone) misses one more game, Wright should be in line for another big workload against the Warriors tonight. Wright put up 33.4 FanDuel points in his first start for Lowry and was playing well against the Cavaliers on Thursday night until the game quickly turned into a blowout. In 428 minutes without Lowry on the court this season, Wright has a 20.5% usage rate and averages 0.95 FD points per minute. The Warriors give up the sixth-fewest FD to point guards, but this game should have one of the highest totals on the slate. As long as Wright draws the start, he will still have upside at his elevated price tag.
Tony Parker (SAS): $4,100 vs. DEN
Parker injured his ankle against the Kings on Monday but he is expected to return tonight. Parker has significantly underwhelmed over the past 4 games, averaging a meager 11.4 FD points per game but in DFS, we must weigh a player’s matchup just as much as their recent performance. The Nuggets are ranked 20th in defensive efficiency rating this season and Jamal Murray is ranked 76th out of 94 PGs in defensive real plus-minus (DRPM). With the Nuggets giving up the third most FD points to point guards, Parker could pay off his cheap price tag if he sees 20+ minutes.
Avery Bradley (DET): $5,300 at CHI
Bradley has played in five games since returning from a groin injury and is finally hitting his stride over the past two games, averaging 30.8 FD points and a surprisingly high 30.4% usage rate. The Bulls are expecting to have Zach Lavine back in the starting lineup tonight, which is great news for Bradley. The Bulls rank 10th in FD points allowed to shooting guards but in 47 games last season, Lavine ranked 69thout of 78 players in DRPM. Bradley is in a great spot to return 6x on his salary in a game that has a 207 total and a one point spread. He is a top two value play on tonight’s slate.
Justin Holiday (CHI): $4,900 vs. DET
Zach Lavine is likely to draw the start in his first game back from last season’s ACL tear, but Justin Holiday should still see plenty of minutes off the bench tonight. Holiday has played well over the past six games, averaging 27.8 FD points while attempting 10+ shots in five of them. The Pistons have given up the fourth fewest FD points to shooting guards this season but Avery Bradley is no longer the defender he once was, ranking 70th out of 105 shooting guards in DRPM. Holiday will be the Bulls sixth man the rest of the way and he could pick up some extra usage with the second unit. Lavine’s return should keep Holiday’s ownership down, which makes him a strong tournament play.
Allen Crabbe (BKN): $5,400 at WAS
Small forward is a tough position to pay down for tonight, but Crabbe stands out as a decent option. Over the past three games, Crabbe has averaged 22 FD points while shooting 51.6% from the field. The Wizards have given up the eighth-fewest FDs points to shooting guards this season but this game features a 215 total and Crabbe should have plenty opportunities to get his shot up on offense. Crabbe has averaged 29.7 minutes per game over the past six contests, so his playing time should be secure as well.
Denzel Valentine (CHI): $5,200 vs. DET
Over the past three games, Valentine has averaged 32.1 FanDuel points per game. Zach Lavine’s return should scare people off the Bulls’ secondary options tonight but he should be limited in his first game back from an ACL tear. The Pistons are a strong defensive team that ranks ninth in defensive efficiency rating but tonight’s game features a 207 total and a one point spread. His price tag is elevated but Valentine has 30-point upside on a relatively cheap price tag and he is likely to see 25-30 minutes of action.
Markieff Morris (WAS): $5,200 vs. BKN
Morris has only averaged 15.3 FD points per game over the past two contents, but he is in a great spot to bounce back against the Nets tonight. On the season, the Nets are ranked 17th in defensive efficiency rating but they have given up the third most FD points to power forwards this season. Prior to Morris’ two-game slump, he averaged 30.3 FanDuel points with 12.3 rebounds over the previous four-game stretch. Morris has flashed 35+ FD point upside over the past few weeks and is one of the stronger point per dollar options at power forward tonight.
Trey Lyles (DEN): $5,800 at SAS
Lyles doesn’t fit into our value price range but power forward is thin on tonight’s four-game slate. Over the past eight games, Lyles has averaged 32.1 FD points per game and, as a bench player, he seems to be under-owned on almost every slate. The Spurs have given up the third least FD points to power forwards this season but Larry Nance Jr. came off the bench and put up 36 FD points in 30 minutes in this same matchup for the Lakers on Thursday night. Lyles could carry minimal ownership on this slate, which makes him a strong tournament option against the Spurs tonight.
Marcin Gortat (WAS): $5,000 vs. BKN
Normally, I don’t chase narratives but sometimes they’re just too good to pass up. The Wizards are hosting Polish Heritage Night at the Capital One Arena on Saturday night. I crunched the numbers and Marcin Gortat, aka the Polish Hammer, has averaged 40.4 FD points in these games in 2016 and 2017 (two games total). He also has a great matchup against the Nets, who rank 27th in FD points allowed to centers this season. The Wizards are playing in the second half of a back to back, but Gortat is in great form and has averaged 28.9 FD points over the past five games. He has also averaged 33.4 FD points and 31.2 minutes on the second half of the Wizards previous two back to back sets. Don’t underestimate the power of Polish Heritage night on tonight’s four-game slate.