Nothing cures a “case of the Monday’s” better than daily fantasy NBA. Tonight offers a nice, nine game slate, which is the perfect size in my opinion (not too many, not too few).
If you want to click top-dollar stars like Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook, and Kevin Durant in your lineup, you’ll need to supplement some bargain picks along the way. Here’s a few “cheapskate specials” to consider at each position:
Remember, you don’t necessarily need the bargain players to have a breakout game. Usually, 4.5 or 5x the listed salary is considered adequate fantasy production. For example, a minimum salary player ($3,500) is looking at 16-18 FP to “pay off” their salary. A $4,600 player would need 21-23 FP, and so on. Be sure to keep that in mind (along with expected playing time) when sifting through the bargain bin.
J.J. Barea - $4,700: Barea is in line to receive another start tonight, a role he’s turned into a solid 24 fppg over the past four. His individual matchup against Chris Paul isn’t great, but J.J. should be able to hit that recent average once again based on the playing time boost and high-scoring nature of this game (208 o/u). He won’t give you a ton of upside, but he’s a safe bet to post solid value for cash games.
Tim Frazier - $3,500: If Michael Carter-Williams misses another game, Frazier should see upwards of 35 minutes. Other than MCW, he’s the only active PG on Philadelphia’s roster. Frazier isn’t a “must play” by any means, as he’s an unseasoned player going up against Golden State’s tough defense. Still, the pace of this game could provide enough peripheral stats for the rookie to hit value. Check Rotoworld Headlines throughout the day for updates on Carter-Williams.
Jamal Crawford - $5,000: There’s several things working in Crawford’s favor tonight: 1) J.J. Redick is listed as doubtful, leaving more minutes for Crawford in the SG spot … 2) Blake Griffin is out, meaning more shots could open up … 3) This Clippers-Mavericks game profiles as one of the highest scoring matchups of the day. Needless to say, Crawford is a great lower-mid-range bargain pick in all formats.
Elijah Millsap - $3,600: Millsap is more of a “punt play flier” in this spot, but there’s definitely some things to like. Joe Ingles has been ruled out again, and Elijah Millsap played 36 minutes (22 FP) in his absence last time around. We’ll also need to keep an eye on Rodney Hood’s status. If he plays, it would eliminate Millsap from value contention. If the injury situations work out in Millsap’s favor, he’s worth a look in tournaments, allowing you to reach up for some top-notch stars.
DeMarre Carroll - $4,900: Carroll profiles as an open-court player, and this game should really accentuate his strengths. Minnesota ranks 7th in pace and 28th in defensive efficiency vs SF’s. DeMarre’s price tag is suppressed due to a few games where he was eased into action following an injury. That creates a nice “buy low opportunity” in this generous matchup.
Danilo Gallinari - $3,800: Gallinari is starting to claim a larger chunk of the Denver rotation as time goes by. His 30 minutes played on Friday marks a season high. He has crossed the 20 FP threshold in three of the last four games, which ultimately marks his value threshold for this salary. The matchup vs OKC isn’t great, but the price point and increase in playing time makes Gallinari a worthy cheapskate special.
Jason Smith - $4,900: Smith isn’t a fantasy asset you’ll brag to your friends about; however, he’s seeing a full complement of minutes for New York’s hodge-podge frontcourt. Even with Amar’e Stoudemire back in the fold, Smith’s playing time hasn’t really wavered. He’s coming off a solid 14 point 13 rebound (33 FP) performance vs Golden State to boot. He’s not someone I’m building my lineup around, but if you are looking for a PF in this price range to round out your team, you should feel reasonably confident with Smith.
Ryan Anderson - $5,300: Anthony Davis is listed as questionable. If he’s out, Anderson will likely get the starting nod along with a substantial increase in minutes. He was already performing well off the bench, posting a solid 29 fppg in four games leading up to Saturday’s blowout loss. Anderson is a streaky shooter, but a significant opportunity will present itself if Davis is ruled out.
Spencer Hawes - $3,500: Hawes saw 35 minutes off the bench yesterday, confirming that he’ll be the primary beneficiary of Blake Griffin’s absence. On top of Griffin being out, Glen Davis is listed as questionable, which would tighten LAC’s frontcourt rotation even more. It’s tough to find a minimum price player vaulted into a full 30-35+ complement of minutes, making Hawes one of the better bargain picks of the day.