NBA DFS is a war zone right now. If you come out of a night unscathed, it's a win. Don't expect that to change as we head toward the playoffs, which are less than three weeks away(!!!). More than ever, you have to be vigilant leading up to lock and expect some turbulence with late breaking news about late games. Tonight should be a good night; with 12 games on the slate you have plenty of options. Few teams are on back to backs as we're sandwiched in between small Tuesday and Thursday slates. Beware the Spurs, in a nice matchup with Orlando, but otherwise it looks like smooth sailing. With all the studs taking the floor tonight, you'll want some deep value in your lineups. Consider these players, all at or under around $5500 on FanDuel. Anyone I recommend that fails to meet expectations I will disown as an April Fool's joke later on Twitter.
Pablo Prigioni ($3600): With Patrick Beverley out the Houston PG situation has been shaky at best. Pablo Prigioni has significantly outplayed the probable (SG eligible) Jason Terry in each of the last two games. Look, both guys are near/at minimum salary for a reason, but the matchup with Sacramento is a sweet one. Not only have the Kings allowed the 3rd most fantasy points to PG, Vegas has this as a fast paced high scoring game. Prigioni can get it going in multiple categories and has 5 steals in the past two games.
Grevais Vasquez ($4000): Kyle Lowry remains out and Vasquez remains terrible. Do you want to trust him again? It's been tough with him shooting so poorly but the minutes are there and tonight the matchup with Minnesota is a favorable one. The Timberwolves are #2 on the season and #3 over the last three weeks in allowing fantasy points to opposing PG. Vasquez is salvaging some of his poor shooting with assists and a couple steals. I like him to get back in the groove tonight with at least 15 real points.
Advice: The Wolves starting PG and dunk hero Zach LaVine ($5700) is also a good play for a bit more money but if you're going in this range, Trey Burke is the man. Coming off two excellent games into a game at the Lakers, I like Burke for tournaments tonight. Point guard is honestly a position you may just pay up twice for, given how things look at the top. Great talent, great matchups.
Eric Gordon ($5200): Eric Gordon had settled into a fairly consistent, if boring option at SG with about 25 fpts/game before a couple of down games vs Houston and Sacramento last week. In a nice matchup with the Lakers, expect his scoring to improve and roll him out as a safe cheap option for cash games.
Advice: Just above the bargain threshold, I like Bradley Beal, who's averaged 40 mpg over the last two and gets the 76ers tonight. Evan Turner is another good option in the mid-range, especially as some people will no doubt be chasing Avery Bradley's 30 point night for less of their salary cap. Danny Green is one of the Spurs that's usually safe in b2b games and Orlando is #1 in fantasy points allowed in the last three weeks.
Chase Budinger ($5100): Kevin Martin is likely out again. That's the end of the analysis. Oh, okay, everyone is playing him anyway, but he has been very solid on the court and for DFS over the past two weeks. He has double digit points in his last 10 games and at least four rebounds in eight of those. He adds a few assists and steals to make a very solid fantasy option IF Martin does in fact sit out again tonight.
Mike Dunleavy ($4400): Another SF value play that doesn't offer a lot of excitement, but Mike Dunleavy can take advantage in good matchups and the Bucks can be vulnerable on the wing. This is a projected low scoring game but if Dunleavy can get hot shooting he will easily meet value at his salary.
Advice: If you look at this position and want to fade fade fade, there are a few high upside plays for even less. Wes Johnson has been playing great ball ($4200) if you want to take on the risk. For under $4K, Lance Thomas is capable of doing something with all the minutes he's seeing, James Johnson could go off again vs Minnesota, Rudy Gay's absence opens it up for Omri Casspi, and Joe Ingles probably gets 25 minutes against the Nuggets for minimum salary. Come on Joe, you got this.
Marvin Williams ($4600): Marvin Williams gets to start yet again and has been pretty solid at his price. The Detroit Pistons frontcourt is not known for playing defense and Williams should have an easy go of it tonight fantasy-wise. He's putting together good nights scoring or rebounding, adding blocks (3 against the Celtics Monday night) and steals to help pad the line.
Dirk Nowitzki ($5900): I'm allowed one over the limit, I say. You want some cheap exposure to the nights' highest projected game and Nowitzki is a safe bet. He's not the Dirk of the old days, but this salary reflects that and in a prime matchup with Western rival Thunder, I bet he shows he's still got it.
Advice: I want to put a Wizards guy here, but with Kris Humphries returning it kills both his and Nene's value in the sweet Philadelphia matchup. Derrick Favors is a top option tonight since it looks like he'll go. Do you dare not play Anthony Davis? I don't know, it's hard to do with so many other good options tonight.
Roy Hibbert ($5300): April Fools! (No this is real, unless, see the intro). Every time I write him up, which to be fair has been like twice in my life, I feel obligated to tell how like three years ago I dreamt that Roy Hibbert was invisible and I used him for DFS and it was like the best play ever. Playing Boston's frontcourt is kind of like being invisible. They aren't going to stop you even if you are plainly visible at 7' tall. Hibbert is only in play for tournaments but at this price, could pay off really nicely tonight.
Steven Adams ($5700): He is capable of disappearing, I know, but he's been a double double machine this month. A matchup with Tyson Chandler is less intimidating than it used to be, though it's still average at best. Adams is the guy most likely to go for 25-35 fpts in this price range.
Advice: Brook Lopez and Rudy Gobert will duke it out to see who's more popular in cash game lineups tonight. Both are great plays. I lean Gobert slightly. Joakim Noah and Zaza Pachulia at each other both make interesting GPP plays. Both are capable of near triple double stat lines for under $7K.