Bales' NBA Game Theory (1/24) » DFS Karma
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Welcome to Bales’ NBA Game Theory (1/24)! 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.



Guards Forwards
Centers Game Stacks
G. Temple C. Johnson J. Valanciunas UTA/PHX
D. Booker H. Jones G. Bitadze IND/NO
D. Garland K. Love B. Biyombo CHI/OKC
C. Duarte J. Holiday N. Vucevic NY/CLE
S. Gilgeous-Alexander D. DeRozan H. Whiteside

If you don’t already play 3 max entry contests daily, try using the teams provided in the stacks above to maximize upside and correlation in your NBA lineups.




This is an interesting slate because there is so much news that hasn’t happened yet. Brandon Ingram’s already been ruled out, while Devonte’ Graham is questionable. Garrett Temple will see increased minutes on this slate, and he’ll make a great option. Although he isn’t a great per-minute player, he’s near the minimum price. If Graham is out, Nickeil Alexander-Walker will also make an elite option. He can be considered in cash games if he’s starting regardless of Graham’s status as well. If you’re looking to spend up, Devin Booker and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander are great options. They’ve both been on fire and get matchups against injured defenses. Each comes with tremendous upside for their price tags. Jordan Clarkson, Chris Paul, Devonte’ Graham, and Jeremy Lamb are all interesting options in cash games at the moment as well.


Darius Garland’s been on fire in recent games, but he’s priced slightly above Gilgeous-Alexander, which should keep his ownership low. He gets a solid matchup against the New York Knicks, and Garland’s an elite tournament option. He’ll gain more value Rajon Rondo’s ruled out tonight. Chris Duarte is playing a bigger role for the Indiana Pacers with so many players ruled out. He hasn’t been the safest option, but he’s scored 45+ DK points in two of his last four games. Duarte also gets a plus matchup against the New Orleans Pelicans tonight. Josh Giddey is another player who’s seen mixed results. He’s in a plus matchup against the Chicago Bulls, and he’s a solid hedge on Oklahoma City if you don’t want to use Gilgeous-Alexander tonight. Aaron Wiggins, Trent Forrest, and the Bulls’ options depending on Zach LaVine can be considered here.



With several players out for the Phoenix Suns, Cam Johnson could be the highest owned player on the slate. He’s still under $4k, and he should see 30+ minutes tonight. Johnson flashed when given this opportunity in the past, and he’s an easy salary relief option tonight. Herbert Jones is another interesting option here. He’ll be locked into big minutes with Brandon Ingram out, and he comes with plenty of upside because of his block and steal potential. He’s still under $5k, making him another elite salary relief option on this slate. If you’re looking to spend up, DeMar DeRozan is a great option if Zach LaVine is ruled out. He’s proven to be an elite scorer with the ability to completely take over the game in recent contests. DeRozan also comes with quiet triple-double potential, and he’s a solid option on this four-game slate. Josh Hart is another great option here. You can also consider the Utah Jazz players depending on who is ruled in and out with Bojan Bogdanovic, Royce O’Neale, and Joe Ingles all questionable.


Kevin Love and Evan Mobley are two interesting options on this slate. Lauri Markkanen’s already been ruled out, which opens a few more minutes for them. Jarrett Allen is also questionable with an illness. If Allen is in, both can still be considered in GPPs. If Allen is out, they may move into the cash game conversation. Justin Holiday and Torrey Craig are two more solid plays here. They’ll both gain value if Caris LeVert is out, and they’ve been playing well in recent games. The only concern is that there are several solid salary relief options at this point, which could keep the ownership a bit lower tonight. Lu Dort and Issac Okoro are two more options to consider at forward tonight.



There are a few great options at center tonight. Jonas Valanciunas gets a great matchup against the Indiana Pacers, who are without several bigs tonight. He’s posted 40+ DK points in three of his last four games, and Valanciunas could have another big night tonight. On the opposite side, Goga Bitadze has been locked into big minutes for the Indiana Pacers, although his price tag is also on the rise. He’s posted 35.75 and 33.25 DK points in 35 and 31 minutes in his last two games, and the Pacers will need his size to have any chance at slowing down Valanciunas. With Rudy Gobert out, Hassan Whiteside can be considered here as well. He’s officially off of the injury report, and he posted 51 DK points in his last game. He should return to big minutes, and Whiteside can be considered in all leagues tonight.


Nikola Vucevic is an interesting option in a great matchup against the Oklahoma City Thunder. He isn’t going to come cheap, and he’s currently questionable, but he comes with more than enough upside to be considered for his price tag. Bismack Biyombo is another player I’m considering. Deandre Ayton is doubtful tonight, and Biyombo’s been taking on a larger role in the Phoenix Suns rotation in recent games. He’s scored 39 and 51.25 DK points in two of his last three contests, and he’s a boom or bust option around $5k tonight. JaVale McGee can also be considered here, although I prefer Biyombo. If he’s able to suit up, Jarrett Allen can also be used in tournaments.


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