We’ve got a nice six-game slate on tap for the end of 2015. There are several games that start a bit earlier than normal (6:00 PM EST), so be sure you check the NBA Starting Lineups Page before locking in your picks for your FanDuel contests.
Shaun Livingston, Golden State Warriors, $3,600 This pick depends on the status of Stephen Curry, who is listed as questionable for tonight. Livingston drew the start last night, but disappointed as he was limited to 21 minutes in a blowout. I’m expecting a better effort from Golden State, which should leave him in line for 25+ minutes. At his salary, all we need is around 18 FD points, which he should be able to accomplish in 25 minutes against a bad Houston defense.
Trey Burke, Utah Jazz, $4,500 Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul are the top-tier options if you’re spending, and both are clearly in play. However, value can be tough to come by and there is potentially some solid value at PG. Trey Burke can be tough to trust, but he gets a big usage bump with Alec Burks out of the lineup. The Jazz are in dire need of offense due to all of their injuries, and Burke can provide offense. In the two games since Burks’ injury, he has averaged 27.5 FD PPG in 32 MPG.
J.J. Redick, Los Angeles Clippers, $4,600 Redick finally got hot last night and poured in 26 points. Unfortunately, the Clippers played well for a second night, which left him with limited minutes. I’m not banking on that long term from a bad Clippers bench, and Redick will see a shot uptick with Blake Griffin out. The matchup against the fast-paced Pelicans is elite, as they are 27th in DVP against SGs.
Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors, $7,300 I like several Warriors tonight as they draw an elite matchup against the Rockets. I like Draymond Green regardless of whether Stephen Curry plays, but Thompson and Livingston get a big bump if Curry sits. Thompson will become the focal point of the offense if Curry sits, and the Rockets have really struggled defensively. My guess is the Rockets try to hide James Harden on Brandon Rush, so Klay should be guarded by Trevor Ariza, who is a solid defender. However, the Rockets overall team defense is still very poor and they are 21st in DVP against SGs.
Also Consider James Harden
Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder, $10,100 Russell Westbrook has actually been better than Kevin Durant in terms of fantasy scoring, but the small forward position is very thin tonight, so I’m giving the nod to Durant based on positional scarcity. The Suns are a trainwreck right now, so a blowout is worrisome, but the Thunder should be able to score at will. The Suns are 26th in DVP on the season, and Durant lit them up in the first meeting with 32 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists.
Gordon Hayward, Utah Jazz, $7,600 Outside of a low-upside punt like Paul Pierce, the SF position is very thin. Hayward is coming off of a poor game, but he topped 40 FD in his previous two games and is seeing a huge usage bump due to all of Utah’s injuries. If Derrick Favors sits again, then Hayward becomes a great target at a weak position against a subpar Portland defense.
Also Consider Paul Pierce
Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors, $9,200 The Warriors were dominated last night without Stephen Curry, and he’s listed as questionable for tonight. Green is arguably a better play with Curry on the court as Curry’s presence really opens things up for him. However, I like Green whether Curry plays or not, as he should take more shots if Curry sits, and the matchup is elite. The Rockets play very little defense, are dead last in DVP against PF, and the Warriors should be motivated after the beating they took last night.
Lavoy Allen, Indiana Pacers, $3,500 This pick hinges on the status of Ian Mahinmi, who left last night’s game with an injury. Jordan Hill looks to be out, so the Pacers would be very thin on the interior if Mahinmi is out. Allen was forced into big minutes last night, and while he doesn’t offer much offensive usage, his minute volume at minimum price is elite.
Also Consider Anthony Davis
DeAndre Jordan, Los Angeles Clippers, $7,600 Jordan has been expected to get a boost with Blake Griffin out, and while he’s been solid, he hasn’t had that huge game yet. Part of that is due to limited fourth quarter minutes, as the Clippers has surprisingly played well over the past two games, which is unlikely to last. This looks like it could be the breakout game as the Clippers face one of the worst defenses in the league in the Pelicans. They are dead last in DVP against the center position, and I think tonight is the night we see that 40+ FD point game from Deandre.