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I’m shocked that I’m writing this but there are limited injuries to monitor on Thursday. We don’t have any major Q tags, which seems to make it a lock we get major news right before lock that shakes up the slate! Regardless, we have a small five game slate on tap and I will highlight my favorite targets at each position below. Let’s go!
We have a decent spread of high-dollar spends and value at the Guard position tonight, but I’m focused on Malik Monk. Los Angeles is still without LeBron James and Anthony Davis –resulting in a near 4% usage rate spike for Monk and a bump to a full fantasy point per minute. Monk is coming in second in ownership projection at this position, behind only Caris LeVert. I think he has a similar minutes projection and ceiling, but is slightly safer given that the Lakers are not on a back-to-back. Monk has been great all season for the Lakers and he has a reasonable ceiling for his price point but comes without sacrificing any floor. He is a lock for me in cash game builds — but can be faded in GPPs.
I am looking to target the value at the F spot tonight with Lamar Stevens and Stanley Johnson. Stevens gets a bump due to the size of this slate and the limited amount of certain value plays. Despite coming off the bench, he’s logged 25, 24 and 26 minutes over his last three games. We’ve even seen him close a few games recently, so the minutes upside is certainly there for only $3,500 on DK. He isn’t a huge per minute producer, but the minutes allocation is worth the risk on a smaller slate like this to jam in one of the stud-level players we like. As for Johnson, he continues to get a boost while the Lakers are down both LeBron and Anthony Davis. Stanley Johnson is not chalk I typically feel comfortable eating but it’s hard to argue with a guy priced below $4,000 that’s logged over 30 minutes in two of his last three games. Those two games with 30+ minutes also resulted in over 30 DK points as well. Both of these guys are viable in all formats for value on Thursday.
Center is dominated by value tonight with Moses Brown likely to start again for the Cavs who are without both Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley. Brown is a top value in all formats as long as he is confirmed starting. Given that I wrote up value at F, however, I will focus on another player at this position in Rudy Gobert. It doesn’t look like Gobert is catching a huge ownership projection tonight, but he continues to see increased minutes with his back-up, Hassan Whiteside, out. I’ve written countless times about how bad this Lakers defense is, but they are especially bad against big men. They’ve ranked bottom-six in points in the paint allowed all season, and that trend has continued post-ASB. Gobert is third in the NBA in paint touches per game. He arguably has the second or third highest ceiling at this position but is coming in around eighth in projected-ownership. Gobert is a great buy in large field GPPs tonight — especially since we will be rostering some Lakers players.
Written by Ben Hossler (Follow @BenHossler on Twitter)