Welcome to Bales’ NBA Game Theory (1/14)! In this article, I’ll outline my favorite cash game and GPP options at each of the positions. I’ll utilize our Projections Portal when making decisions about what types of leagues specific players are best suited for. You can get all of my Core Plays along with our Cheat Sheets, projections, and Premium Discord channels with our Premium NBA Package.
|T. Haliburton||H. Barnes||C. Wood||HOU/SAC|
|J. Poole||J. Toscano-Anderson||N. Bjelica||ORL/CHA|
|D. Garland||P. Washington||J. Embiid||ATL/MIA|
|S. Curry||D. Hunter||J. Allen||CLE/SA|
|L. Ball||M. Bridges||M. Bamba||GS/CHI|
There are two clear games better than the rest with the Golden State Warriors being the extra team to attack. Tyrese Haliburton is catching fire once again. He’s a versatile guard with a surprisingly low price tag for the best game environment by a wide margin. Haliburton, De’Aaron Fox, and Jalen Green are all solid cash game guards in this game. There are several players that are expected to sit out for Golden State tonight. Jordan Poole will take over his old role in the offense, and he’s priced as if he’s the sixth man once again. If Klay Thompson wasn’t back for the last few games, Poole would be over $1k more expensive. LaMelo Ball is another option to consider here. He hasn’t been overly dominant in recent games, but he gets a great matchup against the Orlando Magic tonight. They don’t have the defense to slow down Ball, and he’s a solid expensive option on this slate.
There are plenty of elite tournament options at guard tonight. Stephen Curry’s struggled in recent games, but he still boasts 60+ DK point upside. He could also look to take over the offense with several other players out. He’s certainly a risky option, but Curry comes with tremendous upside in this game. Darius Garland is another great option here. He gets a plus matchup against the San Antonio Spurs, and he’s coming off of a triple-double against the Utah Jazz. Garland can be considered in cash games if Rajon Rondo is out again tonight. You can also consider Chris Paul, Dejounte Murray, Kevin Porter Jr., and Cole Anthony here.
You’re likely starting forward with Juan Toscano-Anderson tonight. He’s always performed well on a per-minute basis, and he’s expected to be locked into significantly bigger minutes with several players doubtful for the Golden State Warriors tonight. Toscano-Anderson also gets a great matchup against the Chicago Bulls, who’ve struggled against forwards at times this season. Harrison Barnes gets a great matchup against the Houston Rockets in the best game of the slate. He continues to be a bit too cheap, as he’s found success in recent games regardless of the matchup. Barnes is entirely too cheap on this slate, and he’s a great option at a weak position. Miles Bridges’ scored 39+ DK points in four of his last five games. He boasts 60+ DK point upside, though. He gets an elite matchup against the Orlando Magic, who feature the worst defense in the NBA against scoring PFs. Evan Mobley, Jae’Sean Tate, and Cody Martin are two more interesting options in cash games at forward.
P.J. Washington and Gordon Hayward are two interesting options on this slate. They come with two significantly different price tags, but both players come with tremendous upside. This is a great game environment, and Washington and Hayward are two solid pivots off of Bridges. With the Golden State players out, De’Andre Hunter will likely go overlooked. He’s absurdly cheap after recently returning, but he performed well in his first game back. Cam Reddish is out of Atlanta, and Hunter makes a great salary relief option on this slate. He likely would be relatively chalky if the Warriors players weren’t clear. You can also use OG Anunoby (if Scottie Barnes is out), Franz Wager, and Marvin Bagley at forward tonight.
Oddly enough, there are only two centers I’m truly considering at center on this slate. Nemanja Bjelica should play bigger minutes with several players expected to be out tonight. He likely only needs 20-25 minutes to exceed value with how well he performs on a per-minute basis. He’s a great salary relief option. Christian Wood is one of the most mispriced players on the entire slate. He’s been playing extremely well, and his price tag doesn’t represent that. He should be roughly $1k more expensive, and Wood is likely one of the first players you’re adding to your cash game lineups tonight.
Jarrett Allen is one of the most interesting tournament options on the slate. He isn’t always an aggressive offensive player, but he gets a great matchup against the San Antonio Spurs tonight. Allen comes with elite upside on this slate. Depending on Mo Bamba’s status tonight, he’ll make an elite option. If he’s starting, he’ll make a great option against the Charlotte Hornets. If Bamba’s out, Robin Lopez can be used in all leagues. He’ll make one of the best plays on the slate if he’s starting tonight. Joel Embiid is going for the record for most consecutive 30+ point games for the Philadelphia 76ers. He’s in play for that reason alone, although he gets a tough matchup against the Boston Celtics. Other GPP options to consider here include Jakob Poeltl, Myles Turner, and Nikola Vucevic.
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