We have a decent-sized slate on tap tonight in the NBA. There are seven games on the schedule and every game features a spread of less than 10 points. We should see some quality basketball played tonight, as many teams are fighting for either playoff positioning or for their playoff lives.
Here are my top FanDuel cash game targets at each position.
Kemba Walker, Charlotte Hornets (Salary: $7500, FPPG: 32.4, MPG: 35, Usage Rate: 26)
Walker and the Hornets are in must-win mode for the rest of the season. They are only a half-game behind the Nets for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. If the Hornets are going to make the playoffs, it will be on the back of Walker, who has really played well recently. Over his last six games, he has averaged 35 fantasy points per contest. Tonight he squares off against a Celtics team that has struggled to contain point guards this season.
Ish Smith, Philadelphia 76ers (Salary: $5800, FPPG: 11.5, MPG: 11, Usage Rate: 23.5)
Smith has incredible upside and he is finally starting to see the playing time that he deserves. Over his last six games, he has averaged 27 fantasy points in 30 minutes per contest. Smith has a high usage rate and a unique ability to fill up all areas of the stat sheet. He draws a terrific matchup tonight against the Lakers, who have allowed more fantasy points to opposing point guards than any other team in the NBA this season.
James Harden, Houston Rockets (Salary: $11600, FPPG: 46.1, MPG: 37, Usage Rate: 31)
The Rockets will be without Dwight Howard, Terrence Jones, Donatas Motiejunas, and Patrick Beverley tonight. It will be all hands on deck, as they take on the Raptors. With all of the injuries, Harden will be asked to take over offensively, something that he has become accustomed to in his career. He has as much upside as any player on the schedule tonight. Harden is a tough fade against the Raptors in what is expected to be a fast-paced, high-scoring affair.
DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors (Salary: $7500, FPPG: 30.3, MPG: 34, Usage Rate: 28.3)
It doesn’t sound like Kyle Lowry will be returning to the lineup tonight, which means DeRozan will continue to be the primary playmaker in the Raptors offense. He has played well over his last six games, averaging 35 fantasy points in 39 minutes per contest. DeRozan should push for upward of 40 minutes tonight against the Rockets. James Harden has never been an elite defender and the Rockets will be without their shot-blockers down low.
Trevor Ariza, Houston Rockets (Salary: $6200, FPPG: 25.6, MPG: 36, Usage Rate: 16.7)
As mentioned earlier, the Rockets will be extremely short-handed tonight, as they take on the Raptors. Ariza should see a sizable uptick in minutes and possibly usage as well. He has played well over his last eight games, averaging 32 fantasy points per contest. Ariza has played at least 38 minutes in each of the last three games and will likely see a similar number of minutes tonight. He’s a low-risk option at small forward that can be targeted in all league formats.
Gerald Henderson, Charlotte Hornets (Salary: $5700, FPPG: 20.7, MPG: 29, Usage Rate: 20.3)
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has already been ruled out of tonight’s game against the Celtics. Henderson should see an uptick in minutes in his absence. In his first start without MKG in the lineup, Henderson scored 31 fantasy points against the Hawks on Saturday night. He has now scored at least 24 fantasy points in seven of his last 10 games. Henderson should be one of the most popular plays at small forward tonight and he should be locked into your cash game lineups.
LaMarcus Aldridge, Portland Trail Blazers (Salary: $9500, FPPG: 40.2, MPG: 36, Usage Rate: 29.9)
Aldridge had a huge second half against the Suns on Friday night. He basically took over in the fourth quarter and led his team to victory. He gets to face the same team tonight, only this time he will face them on his home floor. The Suns are a terrific matchup for potential fantasy production, as they have allowed the fifth-most points per game to their opponents this season. There is enough value on the board to easily fit Aldridge into your NBA lineups.
Josh Smith, Houston Rockets (Salary: $6000, FPPG: 27.5, MPG: 28, Usage Rate: 24.6)
Dwight Howard, Donatas Motiejunas, and Terrence Jones have all been ruled out of tonight’s game against the Raptors. Smith is basically their only talented big man that is healthy enough to play tonight. He should see all of the playing time that he can handle and should be considered one of the top plays at any position. Smith has scored 43 and 33 fantasy points in his last two games and should post a similar outing tonight against Toronto.
Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz (Salary: $8400, FPPG: 25.6, MPG: 25, Usage Rate: 13.5)
Derrick Favors is questionable for tonight’s game against the Wolves. Even if Favors is able to play, Gobert is the premium option at center tonight. He has scored at least 37 fantasy points in seven of his last 10 games and is coming off of a huge 47 fantasy point outing the Thunder. Gobert draws a favorable matchup against a depleted Wolves frontcourt. These teams met up a little more than a week ago and Gobert dominated the paint with 18 points, 17 rebounds, and 6 blocks.