Tonight’s slate is pretty modest, both in sheer volume (5 games) and substance. Lineup configuration may be somewhat tricky as well, given relatively low totals (no game over 200 projected total points) and a few potential blowouts (PHI@MEM, NYK@CHA).
The matchup plays below take all of that into account, outlining the top plays to attack in favorable scenarios.
DET @ MIL: over/under 197, Pistons -2
It’s strange to mention the idea of stacking this game, but that’s the reality of tonight’s limited slate. Milwaukee has been tough at home this season, and as the spread implies, we should see a tight game down the stretch. It’s definitely worth picking your spots on both sides of this matchup, particularly with Detroit’s frontcourt (more on that later).
WAS @ POR: over/under 195, Wizards -5
The Blazers have caught the injury bug, which subsequently opens up fantasy opportunity. LaMarcus Aldridge and Nicolas Batum are out; Chris Kaman is questionable. We can safely assume that Damian Lillard and Wesley Matthews will retain high usage rates. On a more speculative basis, Dorrell Wright could see extended playing time in place of Batum, with Thomas Robinson filling in at the 4-spot. However, the Blazers have been known to mix up their rotation on a per-game basis.
1. Greg Monroe – PF – DET (at Milwaukee)
Monroe is an absolute beast: there’s no denying it. He’s averaging a whopping 40 fppg over the past 10, and I can’t envision a letdown vs Milwaukee. Even though the Bucks have done better defensively this season, they still have susceptibilities in the frontcourt, represented by a 25th ranked rebound rate. They don’t have anyone to matchup up with Monroe, and he’s a top target this evening.
2. Andre Drummond – C – DET (at Milwaukee)
In tonight’s limited slate, it’s a reasonable strategy to deploy both Monroe and Drummond in all formats. As mentioned earlier, it’s the (relatively) highest-scoring game with the closest spread. Both frontcourt members have displayed the ability to coexist in the past, and they each represent excellent selections.
3. Carmelo Anthony – SF – NYK (at Charlotte)
Throwing out the disclaimer right away: Anthony is questionable for tonight’s game. He’s dealing with lingering injuries, and he played heavy (42) minutes last night. If he sits out, I’d recommended pivoting to Gordon Hayward (listed below). However, if Anthony is in with a full complement of minutes, he’s in a great spot to succeed vs a CHA team that ranks 24th at defending SF’s.
4. John Wall – PG – WAS (at Portland)
We usually prefer targeting Wall at home (higher career/season splits), but the combination of a depressed price point, viable matchup, and breakout performance last game makes him a strong DFS candidate. He’s on par with Damian Lillard as the top PG play, but the draw is more favorable for Wall, considering Portland ranks 27th in defensive efficiency vs PG’s over the last 10.
5. Langston Galloway – PG – NYK (at Charlotte)
The rookie from St. Joe’s has been everyone’s favorite value play over the past week. That doesn’t stop tonight, as Galloway’s price point is still too low, especially considering a rock-solid 31 fppg (32 min) average over the past three games. The matchup also follows suit, as Charlotte ranks 20th vs PG’s.
Marcin Gortat – C – WAS (at Portland)
Portland’s frontcourt is reeling. Robin Lopez is out, and now Chris Kaman is questionable. The Blazers have been slipping defensively, ranking 21st in defensive efficiency vs Centers over the past 10. His salary is at an all-time low, and Gortat has flashed some inspiring 30+ FP games in the past week.
Gordon Hayward – SG – UTA (vs Brooklyn)
This is a favorable spot for Hayward, playing at home vs a Brooklyn team devoid of a legitimate wing defender. He has been somewhat hot and cold as of late, but the price tag isn’t prohibitive, and he’s one of the more promising SF options tonight (especially if Carmelo Anthony sits).
All of them profile well in exceptional matchups vs Philadelphia. However, I don’t believe they’ll see enough time to approach fantasy value. Each of their price points are relatively inflated (most notably Randolph and Gasol), and this game could easily get out of hand. The spread is currently sitting at Memphis -17, which is legitimate considering the Grizzlies are rested and playing at home. Meanwhile, Philadelphia is coming off a tough, draining fight with the Raptors last night.