Ah, the refreshing start of a new week. We get a clean slate in our weekly leagues and we now have plenty of data to base off of in daily leagues. The first week came with plenty of surprises: Kevin Love leads the NBA in scoring, Michael Carter-Williams hit the NBA by storm and Derrick Rose was downright awful.
In daily leagues, however, we can’t focus on the past. What happened last game should have some bearing on our decision but today is a new day. If a player is on fire, sometimes it makes sense to ride the hot hand, but sometimes that means regression is coming. Players hardly ever drop 40 points in back to back games as an example, so if they did yesterday then lets not expect that today.
Instead, we now have the data to start focusing on trends. What teams are allowing points to guards? Which teams can’t rebound and therefore must have big men started against them? Did this team’s defense improve over night and are now a force to be reckoned with? Attention to detail on aspects like these are the key to winning daily games day after day after day. With only four games on the slate tonight, our margin for error is significantly less than a full day.
All that being said, here is a list of three players I love tonight and three that I won’t be using. All prices listed are according to Draftkings: my favorite fantasy basketball daily site.
Players I Love:
Michael Carter-Williams – $7,800 – If you follow me on twitter (@RSanders85), you know I’m not the biggest believer in MCW. It’s not that I don’t see him with the ability to fill up the stat sheet, because he will do that plenty, but rather that I see inconsistency. Don’t forget he shot 39% his senior season at Syracuse including 29% from beyond the arc. I assure you his shot hasn’t improved that much to where there won’t be ugly nights ahead. However, tonight Carter-Williams and the Sixers get the Golden State Warriors at home. So far the opposing teams’ top point guards have had nice days against GS. Farmar dropped 12 and 5, Chris Paul had a career day (42 PTS, 15 AST, 6 STL) and Isaiah Thomas went for 12 and 5. Carter-Williams will be seeing a heavier dose of minutes than Thomas or Farmar did, so it’s not unreasonable to expect his success to continue. I would much prefer to save the dough and go with MCW as opposed to spending on Steph Curry or Kyrie. Can’t really argue with CP3 going against Jeremy Lin if you wanted to spend your money that way though.
Zach Randolph – $7,600 – Boston starts Brandon Bass and Vitor Faverani at the 4 and 5. Faverani, who has been solid so far, is still young and proved last game he will be inconsistent. Brandon Bass is an undersized power forward as is the back up Jared Sullinger. Randolph is always among the league leaders in rebounding and double-doubles. Having to box out the likes of the big men that Boston is stuck with, I expect a huge game from Randolph. I would go so far as to say a 20-20 type night isn’t out of the picture, although I expect closer to 15-15.
Dion Waiters – $6,000 – In three games so far against the Timberwolves, the leading scorers have been Aaron Afflalo (28 PTS), Jeremy Lamb (16 PTS) and Carmelo Anthony (22 PTS). What do these guys have in common? Both are 2/3 type guard-forward combos, besides maybe Carmelo. To be fair, Shumpert (12 PTS) and especially Metta World-Peace (season high 17 PTS) both had nice games against Minnesota. So when I recommend Waiters, this is purely a match up play. Kevin Martin, who will get most of the SG minutes, is not a good defender. Minnesota allows a worse than league average 98.7 PPG. Considering how expensive a lot of players are on Draftkings tonight, you could definitely benefit from saving money and rolling Waiters out there.
Players I Won’t Use:
Jeff Green – $7,800 – As always, taking on Memphis is a tough task. Maybe the toughest task in facing the Grizzlies is trying to score on Tony Allen. The only reason Allen remains in the league is for his defense. He is a terrible offensive player who literally relies almost solely on layups. Green is the team’s best scorer, so he still may end with the most points, but Allen certainly won’t make it easy. For that price, I wouldn’t touch him with a 10 foot pole.
DeAndre Jordan – $6,000 – Surprisingly the Houston Rockets allow opponents to the second lowest FG% so far this season. Jordan relies mostly on blocks, rebounds and easy baskets to make it happen for his owners: three things that aren’t likely to happen when facing Dwight Howard. Even if Jordan plays most of his minutes with the second unit of the Rockets, Omer Asik is a great defender in his own right. Expect Jordan to expend lots of energy on the defensive end and get man-handled all night by a newly rejuvenated D12.
Jarrett Jack – $5,100 – The last two point guards to face Minnesota have gone: 3/12 with 8 PTS (Raymond Felton) and 3/9 with 8 PTS (Reggie Jackson). Kyrie is the starter so the stat is a little deceiving, but the trend is still disturbing. Felton and Jackson did combine for 16 assists so there is a glimmer of hope. I spun the statistics to make the Timberwolves’ defense seem flawed in the Waiters segment, so naturally I’m going to spin it a different way here to confuse you: Minnesota’s defense allows opponents to the 9th worst FG% so far this year. I just don’t have a good feeling about Jack despite his cheap price. I would avoid and would prefer to go with Brandon Bass or Francisco Garcia if you’re going cheap.
Bonus Feature: Follower Question (for yearly leagues)
Q: I just added Gerald Green, what do you think? #16teamleague – from @juzken5
A: Goran Dragic admitted that the ankle he sprained in last night’s game “felt worse this time” than when he sprained it in the preseason. Sprained ankle timetables can fluctuate depending on severity of the sprain and where it is on the ankle. This one doesn’t sound so minor so I expect Dragic to at least miss a few games. When Dragic went down, Gerald Green stepped up and filled in admirably. Green scored 21 PTS (5 3PM) with 8 REB, 2 AST and a STL in Goran’s absence. While those numbers may be a little inflated, this new look Suns’ team likes to run under Jeff Hornacek. A fast paced offense will provide plenty of scoring opportunities for an offensive minded Gerald Green. If you can pick him up and play him this week, especially in such a deep league, I see no reason not to. Just beware that his bump in value has an expiration date, which of course is the day that Dragic steps back on the court.
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