The NBA season is winding down, and will continue to experience the typical late-season hectic NBA news cycle. Make sure you keep an eye on the news throughout the day and adapt your lineups to any values that may open up around the league. The NBA Starting Lineups page is a good place to look prior to lock to ensure your selections are playing. Without further ado, let's find some high-upside tournament plays that might help you out on this massive twelve-game Wednesday slate!
Top Play – Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers
The Warriors/Clippers game is the marquee fantasy matchup of the night, as it has a healthy projected total of 224 points according to Vegas odds. Stephen Curry is a great player, but he is by no means a lock-down defender. Paul is the engine that runs the Clippers offense and should be in a line for a fine game this evening. He is also playing some good basketball right now, so lock him in as a top-end play that actually comes at a bit of a discount from the other elite point guards in the league.
Value Play – Isaiah Canaan, Philadelphia 76ers
Although figuring out the Sixers rotations is never an easy thing to do, it appears as if Isaiah Canaan has cemented himself into a sizeable role in the rotation. He is averaging 30 minutes per game in the month of March and has seen slight increases in his statistical production across the board. He remains very cheap on all the major DFS sites and is definitely a fine value option in what should be an up-tempo affair with the Nuggets.
Top Play – Zach LaVine, Minnesota Timberwolves
James Harden is always in play as a top-end option, but he does draw a difficult matchup this evening against the slow-paced Jazz. Shooting guard is a fine position to fine some mid-range plays today, so that is likely where I will head. Zach LaVine is locked into a 36-40 minute role for the Timberwolves, and he draws a prime matchup against the Kings this evening. Sacramento doesn’t play a lick of defense and they are terrible against the shooting guard spot. His price hasn’t moved much in recent weeks, and LaVine should be a solid option in GPPs this evening.
Value Play – Jordan Clarkson, Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers and Suns meet for a rematch tonight, as they just played a week ago. This is a matchup between two teams with nothing to play for, and the Lakers might be a bit short-handed in this game. D’Angelo Russell got injured last night, and his status is in question for this contest. That should mean an uptick in minutes for guys like Clarkson, and Clarkson is coming off a fine game last night where he scored 22 points and played a whopping 38 minutes. If he gets those kind of minutes tonight against the Suns, he should be a fabulous value option.
Top Play – LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
We have a fun small forward matchup tonight as LeBron James and the Cavs take on Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks. He may not say it publically, but you know LeBron wants to show who’s boss in this game. He is coming off a fine 65 fantasy point performance the other night, and King James is playing some of his best basketball of the year right now. Expect him to be aggressive in this game, and I like James as my preferred option. That being said, both of these players obviously have plenty of GPP upside.
Value Play – P.J. Tucker, Phoenix Suns
I know he’s not a sexy pick, but he gets the run and this matchup is a great one against the Lakers. This should be an up-tempo, sloppy game with plenty of turnovers, which is just the kind of game where Tucker can make his mark. If he chips in a few steals and a block or two tonight, he should be able to scramble together enough offensively to find value. I am not opposed to removing him if some better value plays come out later in the day, but there’s nothing wrong with giving Tucker a look in this matchup.
Top Play – Derrick Favors, Utah Jazz
Houston has had all sorts of problems defending opposing power forwards this year, as they have rotated through a cast of characters at the position including Clint Capela, Josh Smith, Terrence Jones, Michael Beasley, and others. None of those guys have proven capable of packing a defensive punch, and I expect Derrick Favors to take full advantage. This is an absolutely vital game in the Western Conference playoff race, with both teams (along with Dallas) fighting for the last two playoff spots. Favors is one of my favorite plays of the night on a per-dollar basis.
Value Play – Julius Randle, Los Angeles Lakers
Byron Scott promised us that he will not bench his young players down the stretch, and he held true to that promise at least for one night as Julius Randle logged 34 minutes in yesterday’s game. Assuming he gets that again tonight, he is a virtual lock for a double-double against the porous defense of the Suns. Randle has immense upside and is also a great option tonight at what is a loaded power forward position.
Top Play – Andre Drummond, Detroit Pistons
DeMarcus Cousins is battling a few nagging injuries and is uncertain to play tonight. He does make a great high upside option if he goes. For now, I will list Drummond here. He has 20/20 upside with his rebounding ability, especially when you tack on a matchup against an Orlando team that struggles inside and will once again be without Nikola Vucevic. Give Drummond a long look for his immense upside in tournament formats this evening.
Value Play – Jusuf Nurkic, Denver Nuggets
If you want to make a risk/reward play, look no further than Jusuf Nurkic. Mike Malone has promised to give him some run down the stretch, and he is fresh off a 26-minute outing against the Cavs the other night where he looked good. Granted, some of that was due to garbage time, but Nurkic has scored in double figures in three straight games. He may only play 15-20 minutes tonight, so there is definitely risk attached. However, it is a great matchup against a Sixers team that really struggles on the glass. Nurkic could be the low cost player that wins someone a tournament tonight.