Friday is finally here, and once again, the NBA did not disappoint with a 12-game slate on tap. Tonight’s picks will focus on the best targets for your cash game lineups on FanDuel. These picks are based on value and are typically much “safer” than tournament plays. Typically, you only need to beat out 50% of your opponents to cash, which is why we take fewer risks in cash games.
Jeff Teague, Atlanta Hawks (Salary: $7700, FPPG: 33, MPG: 31, Usage Rate: 25.5)
Teague is coming off of a terrific outing against the Wizards in which he had 26 points, 2 rebounds, and 8 assists. His production is trending upward and his salary on FanDuel has yet to reflect his recent level of play. Tonight he squares off against Stephen Curry and the Warriors, in what should be one of the fastest-paced games of the evening.
Marcus Smart, Boston Celtics (Salary: $4900, FPPG: 16.6, MPG: 24, Usage Rate: 14.3)
Smart has looked incredibly comfortable as the Celtics’ starting point guard. Over his last two games, he has averaged 9 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists, and 3 steals in 39 minute per game. His salary is still sub-$5k on FanDuel, making him one of the top plays at the position. He also sees a sizable matchup boost, as he faces a Sixers’ team that has allowed more than 100 points per game this season.
James Harden, Houston Rockets (Salary: $10800, FPPG: 45.5, MPG: 36, Usage Rate: 31.2)
Dwight Howard is out for the foreseeable future and Harden’s price has dipped below the $11,000 mark on FanDuel. He should have an extremely high usage rate in the Rockets’ offense tonight against the Bucks. Harden has the ability to post 50 fantasy point outings in his sleep and the Bucks have struggled to defend talented wing players this season.
DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors (Salary: $6900, FPPG: 28.3, MPG: 33, Usage Rate: 27.8)
In cash games, we like to look for value. Value can arise from injuries or from a depressed price tag. DeRozan’s price is down on FanDuel, even though he has scored at least 34 fantasy points in four of his last seven games. He draws a favorable matchup tonight against the Clippers, who have struggled to contain elite scorers on the wing.
Tobias Harris, Orlando Magic (Salary: $6100, FPPG: 29.1, MPG: 34, Usage Rate: 23.7)
Dollar for dollar, Harris may be my favorite play on the board tonight. He is underpriced and he draws a premier matchup against the Lakers, who are ranked 29th in points allowed per game this season. Harris has played at least at least 38 minutes in each of his last two games and should be a staple across your cash game lineups tonight.
Trevor Ariza, Houston Rockets (Salary: $5300, FPPG: 24.8, MPG: 36, Usage Rate: 16.9)
Ariza may not have the highest usage rate, but his minutes are trending in the right direction with Dwight Howard out of the lineup. Over his last five games, he has averaged 25 fantasy points in 35 minutes per game. He draws a favorable matchup against the Bucks, who are ranked 23rd in fantasy points allowed to small forwards this season.
Greg Monroe, Detroit Pistons (Salary: $8200, FPPG: 30.9, MPG: 30, Usage Rate: 23.7)
Trends are converging for a monster fantasy outing from Monroe. The Pistons host the struggling Denver Nuggets in game that should be played at a very quick pace. The Nuggets have struggled to contain opposing power forwards all season, allowing the third-most fantasy points to the position. I prefer Monroe to Anthony Davis in cash games, as he is $3,200 cheaper and has a better matchup.
Donatas Motiejunas, Houston Rockets (Salary: $5800, FPPG: 22.1, MPG: 28, Usage Rate: 18.7)
Motie-“cash game”-junas has scored at least 24 fantasy points nine times in his last ten games. He is also coming off of a terrific three-game stretch, where he averaged 21 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 assists per game. With Dwight Howard on the shelf, Motiejunas will continue to see 30+ minutes each night. He may also see a boost if Ersan Ilyasova and Zaza Pachulia are ruled out. If that’s the case, he would match up against the much smaller Jared Dudley.
Nikola Vucevic, Orlando Magic (Salary: $8900, FPPG: 36.8, MPG: 34, Usage Rate: 25.5)
Whiteside will likely be the most popular play at center tonight and for good reason. He has been on a tear recently. That said, for $900 more, I’d rather target Vucevic against an awful Lakers team. The Lakers have allowed the sixth-most fantasy points to centers and are ranked 20th in rebounding differential. A 20-point, 20-rebound performance is not out of the question.