Top Tier: Damian Lillard- If Lillard is officially good-to-go tonight, he easily becomes a top play against the Los Angeles Lakers. No team in the NBA is allowing a higher FG% to opposing point guards than the Lakers, and if Lillard’s shot is falling he will be on the clear path to a monster game.
Mid Tier: D’Angelo Russell- I don’t think you can label this as a safe play, so I’m going to put him as tournament only even with Caris LeVert out. The matchup with the Heat is not as scary as it once was, especially since they’ve upped their pace this season, but Atkinson likes to play whoever is playing best, so if Russell starts cold we could see more Dinwiddie down the stretch. For cash games I’d side with Ricky Rubio or Jeff Teague.
Low Tier: Derrick White- White is clearly too cheap tonight in a smash spot against the Suns. He should be able to give us 18+% usage and assists, and the minutes will continue to be stable with Rudy Gay still out.
Top Tier: DeMar Derozan- Derozan is sporting a healthy 28+% usage and assist rate this season, taking on a much larger role than he ever has before in his previous seasons with Toronto. The Suns continue to be one of the most giving teams in terms of fantasy points to guards, and stacking Dero along with LMA makes a ton of sense to me tonight.
Mid Tier: CJ McCollum- McCollum’s price of just $6,400 stands out on FanDuel in a great matchup with the Lakers. His minutes have been on the rise over the last week and the Lakers come in ranked dead last against Shooting Guards this season.
Low Tier: JR Smith- You never feel great about rostering JR Smith, but his minutes should continue to be locked in for an incredibly short-handed Cavs team. I worry about them being on a back-to-back, but the matchup with the Wizards is extremely strong and if he is your low score drop at the end of the night it won’t kill you either way.
Top Tier: Giannis Antetokounmpo- Giannis is always a top option any time he’s on the slate, but he falls behind Anthony Davis for me today in terms of top overall play. I’m not scared of the matchup against the Grizzlies, but given the 215 O/U it will probably be a GPP-only setting for ABC tonight.
Mid Tier: Nikola Mirotic- Anthony Carson’s most hated NBA player, Nikola Mirotic, is a top option for me again tonight after officially being announced in earlier today. Before getting injured, Niko had put together a run of 40+ FanDuel points in five of his last six games and I hinted that this is the best overall game of the night with a monster 235.5 O/U.
Low Tier: Trevor Ariza- There’s nothing inspiring about playing Trevor Ariza, but he makes for a comfortable value play on FanDuel where you are protected from your lowest score anyways. Both the Spurs and Suns play slow, but San Antonio is not the defensive juggernaut we once knew and he has topped 28 minutes in his last eight games.
Top Tier: Anthony Davis- I lean AD narrowly over Giannis if spending up for one top option, that being easier to do on FanDuel as always. This is a nut game set-up for him in a fast-paced matchup with no rim protection whatsoever on the Timberwolves.
Mid Tier: LaMarcus Aldridge- Aldridge will continue to dominate as the second option for the Spurs with Rudy Gay and Pau Gasol out, and this matchup with the Suns is one of the better ones on the slate. He put up just 29 FD points against them in their last meeting, but note that he played only 23 minutes. With a 5 point spread, we should expect a full dose of LMA tonight.
Low Tier: Larry Nance (DraftKings)- I think Nance is going to be one of the highest owned players on the slate, but I prefer him on DraftKings where he is still below $6,000. The Wizards are a very poor rebounding team, which plays to Nance’s strength and he hasn’t had a good night scoring yet so there is room for growth in his performance. I just worry about the 30+ minutes he played last night.
Top Tier: Hassan Whiteside- Whiteside vs Ayton is extremely interesting to me tonight, and I think they are both extremely good plays. Whiteside has had some mediocre games against the Nets in the past, but they have been so bad against big men this season you have to expect a strong game tonight. I will most likely play both on DraftKings, and the key decision comes on FanDuel where you have to choose one.
Mid Tier: DeAndre Ayton- Ayton is probably my favorite overall play tonight when factoring in price, and I think he is close to a lock for cash games on all sites. Obviously you will want to differentiate in tournaments, but he is $7,000 and below on FanDuel and DraftKings slated for 35+ minutes against the Spurs, in a game with just a 5 point spread. He’s contributing to all categories this season, and is averaging over a fantasy point per minute.
Low Tier: Tristan Thompson- If you need a cheap center, TT sets up nicely against the poor-rebounding Wizards. He racked up 21 boards last night against Charlotte, and he has been attacking the glass relentlessly ranking top-five in offensive rebounds this season.
Written by Ben Hossler (Follow @BenHossler on Twitter)