Tristan’s NBA Game Theory (1/19) - DFS Karma
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Tristan’s NBA Game Theory (1/19)

Welcome to Tristan’s NBA Game Theory (1/19)! 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
J. Clarkson J. Ingles R. Gobert BKN/WAS
D. Melton J. Butler N. Jokic CHA/BOS
J. Konchar D. Hunter D. Sabonis OKC/SAS
D. Mitchell T. Harris M. Bamba HOU/ATL
D. Fox A. Edwards R. Williams DET/SAC

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.

A ton of news to get through tonight in a 13 game slate so please please please, don’t forget to check for updates either on Twitter or in our discord channel where news updates are posted and in our premium channel, breakdown of the news! With that out of the way, let’s get to it.



First guard I’m looking at for both cash games and GPPs is Jordan Clarkson…without Donovan Mitchell this season, he has scored 30, 23, and 19 real points. This isn’t on top of the usual 4-5 reb and 3 assists per game that he has without Mitchell in, as well as averaging ALMOST 1 STL per game. He sees his shot attempts moon, as well as having his minutes solidified. Combined with the fact that Houston plays at one of the fastest paces in the game, as well as having the worst defenses in the game, this spot is completely primed for Clarkson. Houston gives up t5 FP to guards in both the PG and SG category, which bodes well for Clarkson.

The other guard I’m looking at in cash is DeAnthony Melton. With news that the Grizzlies are missing Tyus Jones, Desmond Bane, Dillon Brooks, AND Kyle Anderson, there should be a ton of minutes for some of the guards that used to play a ton that have faded out a little. Melton is a prime example of that, with a high FPPM especially in an up pace match-up like this. With all of those guys out, there needs to be around 70 minutes that needs to replaced by the Grizzly guys. Melton already saw 15 last game, and with 70 minutes open…I believe he can hit 30 here as well as it being spread out to Ziaire Williams and John Konchar. 


In GPPs, I’m looking at a plethora of players while waiting for the official starting line-ups. That includes John Konchar if he starts, Terrence Davis if he starts, Davion Mitchell, and I am still stumped on Gabe Vincent, Max Strus, or Duncan Robinson…but I have a feeling one goes nuts tonight against a bad defensive team in Portland. Gabe Vincent should see full run, but the question is will Strus or Duncan be the guy to close the game out? Caleb Martin should also see good minutes here, he will be needed to guard either one of Anfernee or CJ.



With news that both Mitchell and Rudy Gay will be out tonight, I believe we will see a ton of Joe Ingles. Now this isn’t a sexy play that will get you 30, but I believe 20-25 is definitely in the realm of possibilities. Houston gives up one of the most PPG to teams, one of the most 3PM, as well as plays at a t5 pace in the game right now. Ingles minutes should be secure with both Mitchell and Gay out, and if their defense focuses on Clarkson or Conley, Ingles should see a ton of open looks. He’s very cheap at 3.7k so he doesn’t need a ton to pay off his price, with upside as well.

Usually don’t put studs in GT too often but this is an exception, Jimmy Butler is going to be without Kyle Lowry AND Tyler Herro, responsible for 19.6% and 29.6% usage respectively. Jimmy should have his entire hands full being the sole playmaker for this team against a below average defense in Portland. Portland is still getting used to CJ being back, as they looked pretty good without both CJ and Dame…now they have to adjust to CJ being back. Jimmy and Bam should be the key components for Miami tonight, and I can see Jimmy putting up a near 3×2 tonight. He has huge upside here and a high floor with the Heat key guys out.



I’m looking at Tobias Harris for GPPs here, in a plus match-up against the Orlando Magic who are terrible at guarding PFs. Last 2 match-ups against ORL, Tobias put up 47.25 and 33.75 DKP respectively, which more than pays off his 6.7k pricetag for the night. My only gripe here is that PHI is currently favored by 11 1/2, which could result in a blowout..but I think this stays around that number to where the starters of PHI play their normal allotment of minutes. Also looking at DeAndre Hunter and Danilo Gallinari. 

BONUS: If Kelly Olynyk has no restrictions, love him in this match-up with his role.




Rudy Gobert is going to be fairly popular tonight with the Jazz news that I mentioned before, and it seems like there’s a pattern here with my plays… but for good reason! He has an amazing match-up against Houston who are AWFUL at guarding Cs, and should see increased usage with Mitchell out. Their depth is also gone with Whiteside still out from COVID, which secures Gobert’s minutes if this game stays close. Without Mitchell, he is averaging 17 PPG, 14 RPG, 1.7 APG, as well as over a stl and blk per game as well. This includes a blowout that they had vs Portland a bit ago, where his time got cut short but still put up a cool 22/14 with 2 blks. With the double-double bonus, that’s an easy 40 DKP with more upside in this match-up here.


In GPPS, I have a few players I’m looking at.. Mo Bamba if he starts — he has gone off against PHI in both match-ups this season (as a starter), 47.75 and 38.5 DKP. He is currently priced at 5.3k..Onyeka Okongwu might be popular for good reason.. Capela is still out and they will need him to guard KAT. I’m just afraid of the foul trouble here, but his price is really nice for his minutes and ceiling. If Gary Trent is still out, we can see Toronto run another 8 man rotation (with the 8th man barely playing) which puts Chris Boucher and Precious Achiuwa in spots where each can see 30+ minutes. This is especially great because Dallas struggles against centers, which is a perfect match-up for either. Both should be fine but with Achiuwa, you get a big price discount (but for a cost, Achiuwa is known for foul trouble).

Follow Tristan on Twitter (@SrirachaDFS)

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