A big Wednesday slate is here again. Let's dig in deeper now and find some top FanDuel plays at each position.
Jamal Murray: $6,600 (vs. Atlanta)
Murray is finally being given an opportunity to assert his control over the backcourt of this Denver team, and it’s paying off with big fantasy dividends. He is averaging 34.6 FanDuel points per game over his last six games. Denver has a massive team total of 112 points tonight at home against Atlanta, and the Hawks are generally not a good team on defense anyway. Over the last month of basketball they’ve surrendered the third-most fantasy points per game to opposing teams, and Denver is a juggernaut at home, averaging nearly 112 points per game this season. This price tag on FanDuel has not caught up with the production that Murray has shown since the keys to this offense have been turned over to him. Based on price tag, matchup, and upside, this is the first guy I’m plugging into my lineups tonight on FanDuel.
Lou Williams: $7,900 (vs. Golden State)
The best thing you can do in NBA fantasy is capitalize on injuries and late scratches. Lou Williams is in one of those situations where we can pounce on the injuries that the Clippers have. Austin Rivers, Blake Griffin, Patrick Beverley and Danilo Gallinari are all going to be out tonight for Los Angeles. Williams is the biggest beneficiary of all those injuries combined. Over the last five games he’s averaged 41 FanDuel points per game, and on Monday night he actually played 40 minutes and attempted 29 field goal attempts. That’s Kobe Bryant level usage, and I would absolutely think that the same formula holds true tonight playing on the road against Golden State. With the injuries and the lack of depth in the backcourt for the Clippers, Williams splits time between point guard and shooting guard, and he should see ample opportunity tonight against non-imposing defenders like Stephen Curry and some of the bench guys that will try to guard him. This is going to be a high-paced game and Williams is going to have all the minutes and shots he can handle. The only drawback for him tonight, in my opinion, is that I actually hope he doesn’t get worn down by the fourth quarter with all his usage, but that’s a good problem to have in fantasy.
Josh Richardson: $5,600 (vs. Indiana)
Richardson comes at a really nice price tag of only $5,600 on FanDuel tonight, and this is a perfectly acceptable matchup for a hybrid player like him. It’s early in the day, but what we know is that Dion Waiters and Justise Winslow are going to be out tonight again, and we are awaiting news of Tyler Johnson and James Johnson, both of whom could be out tonight also. Things are already open for Richardson to play big minutes tonight and any more injuries would just be the icing on the cake. There are some players you absolutely don’t want to play on the second game of a back-to-back and then there are guys that actually are better in that scenario. Richardson is the latter. He averages over a minute more per game and three fantasy points per game more on the second game of a back-to-back set. Miami had an extremely tough game in Toronto last night and two of their main stars, Goran Dragic and Hassan Whiteside, both exerted a lot of energy pulling off that win. This back-to-back situation, factored in with the injuries, has me thinking Richardson is going to play 40+ minutes tonight with the usage rate in the low 20s, which would be absolute money in the bank for fantasy purposes at this price tag.
Aaron Gordon: $7,600 (vs. Milwaukee)
Gordon played 32 minutes last night after having been benched from the start of the game for being late to the team flight. That should actually suit him well tonight in the second game of a back-to-back traveling to Milwaukee. Assuming he wasn’t late this time and is going to draw the start, he should creep back up around is 35 to 38 minute range in this game. Theoretically Gordon should be one of the main players benefiting from the absence of Nikola Vucevic, and that is ringing true, as he has averaged 37.5 FanDuel points per game over his last five games. He’s a fair price tag on FanDuel, he should be well rested and motivated after not getting the start in last night’s game, and Milwaukee has been playing terribly lately, which should lend to this game being more competitive than it normally would be.
Andre Drummond: $9,300 (vs. Brooklyn)
There are 11 games on the slate tonight, which means a ton of options at all price points. It means there are multiple stud players in the high salary range that are capable of dropping a tournament-changing performance. But I’m more likely to bypass the super expensive Russell Westbrook and DeMarcus Cousins and spend a little bit less money on an option like Drummond, whom I think has a chance to also drop a 50+ point game tonight in this matchup. According to the RotoGrinders defense versus position chart, this matchup against Brooklyn rates as the third best for centers in the NBA, amongst all teams. We have them ranked as the team that gives up the fifth-most rebounds to the center position while also playing at the third-highest pace, both stats which play extremely well into Drummond’s strengths. Las Vegas also has this pegged as a close game with only a two-point spread, which should lead to Drummond’s full complement of minutes tonight, something in the neighborhood of 34+.