NBA Playbook: Top Plays, Values and Sleepers – 12/9
Blake Griffin: Blake is essentially the play of the night. After coming off a rather lackluster performance by his standards against Minnesota (just shy of 40 fantasy points), Griffin looks to get back on track tonight against a Bucks team that has been generous on the season to power forwards. With averages of 24, 9, and 5 this season, Griffin is actually a solid MVP candidate. He won’t win the award because of Steph Curry, but he can quietly dominate for your DFS team tonight. I like his upside in this contest.
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James Harden: James Harden is a stud every single night in DFS. I expect him to be highly owned in a game vs the Wizards that will feature little to no defense. Both teams run extremely fast paces, which benefits Harden’s style of play. I expect him to get on track after a terrible performance last night in Brooklyn, where he struggled to score. Harden has only taken 23 shots his last two games, and even more alarming has 12 turnovers in that span. Although tonight is different. When James Harden gets to the free throw line 10 or more times this season he is averaging 57 fantasy points on DraftKings. Insane numbers. Harden will have to get to the line and avoid turning the ball over.
John Wall: Wall comes into tonight as a very inconsistent fantasy player. It seems like he will either fail to meet his price tag by 10-15 points, or exceed it by 10-15. He makes for a very difficult player to predict. Tonight will favor his fast, high-octane style of basketball. Wall will get Patrick Beverly for majority of the night, with the occasional Ty Lawson. Regardless, neither can stop Wall at his best. He will be forced to do a lot to keep this game close, as his Wizards are not very good this season.
Cody Zeller: Zeller has been viewed as somewhat of a disappointment after being drafted 4th overall by Charlotte a few years back. However, with Al Jefferson out for sometime, Zeller has been making the most of his opportunity. Cody isn’t the type of player who can get you 20 points, 10 rebounds and dominate the point. But the good part is, he doesn’t need to. With his price tag still so low, a simple game of 25 fantasy points will hit value. Anything past that is upside, and somewhat obtainable if he can stay out of foul trouble and get to the free throw lineup. Zeller is a safe cash game play.
Bismack Biyombo: Biyombo has played very well this year backing up Jonas V and filling in while he is out with injury. Biyombo is a skilled rebounder and defensive stopper; something usually not heralded in DFS. But his scoring averages have increased and his price tag has not which makes him an interesting play on the slate tonight.
Elfrid Payton: Elf is a very safe play. Night to night you can count on him to always hit or hover around his value despite his price. His low ownership is what makes him a sleeper tonight. On a 10-game slate full of superstar and upper echelon guards, I expect less than 10% to use Payton tonight. Against an up-tempo Suns team would be a perfect opportunity for the kid to triple double and win you a GPP.
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Goran Dragic: Similar to Elfrid, Dragic projects low ownership on a night where many top guards take the court. As of late he has been playing much better basketball, showing flashes of old. I trust in Goran tonight to exceed value, and as a mid/low tier PG on this slate it is hard to ignore his potential and upside.
Jabari Parker: The former Duke star has a very affordable price across the DFS industry and what makes him so intriguing tonight is his minutes. Parker has played an average of 34 minutes over his last 2 contests scoring 33.75 and 24.5 fantasy points respectively. His willingness to help crash the boards make him more than just a one trick pony. Take advantage of this sleeper now, as his price will rise over the next week.
Thanks for reading and be sure to follow me on Twitter @BrandonHodge for any NBA DFS questions you may have!