Welcome to Bales’ NBA Game Theory (2/10)! 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.
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|Washington Guards||K. Kuzma||T. Bryant||MIL/PHX|
|L. Doncic||P. Siakam||A. Sengun||TOR/HOU|
|J. Brunson||K. Olynyk||D. Ayton||MEM/DET|
|D. Bane||J. Crowder||B. Adebayo||BKN/WAS|
|K. Irving||G. Antetokounmpo||R. Hachimura||MIA/NO|
Today is the NBA trade deadline, so this article is specifically for when it’s written. Keep track of news, as you’ll likely need to update certain spots as we get closer to lock. You’re starting at guard with the Washington Wizards guards. Spencer Dinwiddie and Aaron Holiday were traded. Raul Neto is expected to see 30+ minutes, and he’s performed well when given the time. He’s also near the minimum price tonight. Corey Kispert and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope are also entirely too cheap. Of the trio, I lean toward Neto followed by Kispert then Caldwell-Pope. If you’re looking to spend up at this position, Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving are both interesting options. Doncic’s been one of the top fantasy point options in recent games, while Irving will take on a massive role with James Harden traded and Kevin Durant out. You can also consider Dalano Banton, Gary Trent Jr., Chris Paul, and Devin Booker here.
Jalen Brunson is an extremely interesting option tonight. He’s taking on a massive role with players out, and he gets a solid matchup against the Los Angeles Clippers tonight. With so much focus on Doncic, Brunson is a player that will likely go overlooked. Ja Morant and Desmond Bane are both great options against the Detroit Pistons. Detroit struggles against shooting guards, and they don’t feature the interior defense to slow down Morant at the rim. The biggest concern in this game is a blowout. If there weren’t that concern, Morant would be a cash game option, while Bane would be on the brink. Still, they’re both better suited for tournaments. Patty Mills doesn’t need to be the focal point of the offense with Kyrie Irving playing tonight, but he’ll still see plenty of opportunities with others out. He flopped the other night, but Mills still comes with tremendous upside for his price tag. Jrue Holiday, Stephen Curry, Alec Burks, and Cam Thomas are all interesting options here as well.
Unsurprisingly, you’re starting forward with the Washington Wizards options as well. Kyle Kuzma should take on a massive role tonight, as Spencer Dinwiddie (traded) and Bradley Beal are both out. Deni Avdija should see plenty of time on the floor, and he’s still entirely too cheap. He comes with a bit more risk, and he isn’t my favorite salary relief option, but he is an outstanding option. Pascal Siakam will be the focal point of the Toronto Raptors offense with Fred VanVleet out, and he’s performed extremely well in this situation throughout the season. He’s a triple-double threat, and Siakam is an elite spend-up tonight. As always, you can also consider Giannis Antetokounmpo here. He’s always a top option, and there is more than enough salary relief on this slate to easily fit him into your lineups if you choose. I wouldn’t be opposed to considering Julius Randle, OG Anunoby, and Scottie Barnes here, although they aren’t my favorite options in cash games.
Some are considering Kelly Olynyk in cash games, but I prefer him in GPPs. Trey Lyles was traded, which should open up minutes for Olynyk. He’s flashed on a per-minute basis throughout his career, and that could be the case again tonight. Jae Crowder’s been playing better in recent games, specifically rebounding. He now gets a plus matchup against the Milwaukee Bucks, who’ve struggled against rebounding power forwards throughout the season. Crowder quietly comes with some double-double potential, and he’s a high-upside option. Jaxson Hayes’ quietly playing well at the moment, and I’m intrigued to see if he starts tonight. If CJ McCollum starts at PG and they leave Hayes in the starting lineup, he’ll make an outstanding option. You can consider DeAndre’ Bembry and Khris Middleton at forward in GPPs as well.
You’re likely saving salary at center tonight. Thomas Bryant and Rui Hachimura are expected to see bigger minutes with Montrezl Harrell traded and Daniel Gafford out. Both have flashed in limited minutes throughout the season, and they’re still absurdly cheap. Bryant is the better option of the duo, but they can both be used. Alperen Sengun is another cheap option that comes with tremendous potential. He’s been playing a bigger role in the Houston Rockets offense, and he’s still priced under $5k. All three of these players are elite salary relief options in cash games. It could be tough to get Hachimura into your lineup with so many great options on Washington, making it easier to play Sengun.
Deandre Ayton is an interesting option tonight. He comes with elite potential in the Phoenix Suns offense, although he gets a tougher matchup against the Milwaukee Bucks. He’s cooled off in recent games, but he also posted 48.5 DK points in only 24 minutes a few games ago. He returned to 30 minutes in his last game, and Ayton comes with tremendous upside. Bam Adebayo is a bit too expensive on this slate. That’s why he’s such a great tournament option. He gets a great matchup against the New Orleans Pelicans, and Adebayo comes with more than enough upside to beat his price tag. He just also comes with quite a bit of risk. Bobby Portis, Precious Achiuwa, and Ivica Zubac can all be considered in tournaments as well.
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