Saturday’s NBA slate consists of five games. The Atlanta at Memphis game offers little in the way of defense and both teams rank in the Top 10 in fantasy points allowed (Cleveland, Golden State, and Portland join them tonight). Sacramento is the only team that gets a notable pace bump, while Philadelphia and Utah have substantial rebounding advantages over Golden State and Detroit, respectively. Players on the questionable list tonight are: Draymond Green, Trae Young, Andre Drummond, Tristan Thompson, and Richaun Holmes. The usuals are remaining out tonight. In this column, I generally set $6000 FD/$5000 DK as the bargain threshold, and I try to indicate when I think a position is particularly well-suited--or not--to using the cheap plays given the landscape of the particular slate. Tonight’s slate tips at 7:00 pm EST.
Shake Milton, Philadelphia 76ers at Golden State ($5900 FD, $6300 DK)
Milton is your standard upper-bargain range option with a high floor and upside in a good matchup with the Warriors. The game carries a fairly high point total (225.5) and a narrow, 1.5-point spread. Yes, Stephen Curry is back, but this should still be a spot where Milton can continue to post 35 fantasy points with ease.
Jeff Teague, Atlanta Hawks at Memphis ($3800 FD, $3900 DK)
If Young is out with an illness again tonight, consider Teague for some super savings. Vegas has set the line as if that will be the case, as the Grizzlies are 6.5-point favorites right now. To be fair, Teague didn’t do all that much more in his start Friday night than in several games over the last couple weeks, but this matchup with Memphis is a good one all around. Keep expectations for Teague at around 20-22 fantasy points if Young is out.
Mike Conley, Utah Jazz at Detroit ($5400 FD, $4900 DK)
Conley is easy to overlook, but over his last five games he’s scored at least 15 real points and 27 fantasy points. He’s one of few solid bargains on DraftKings, and has some upside given that Detroit ranks 22nd in defensive efficiency and second in the league in turnover rate.
Kevin Huerter, Atlanta Hawks at Memphis ($5300 FD, $5600 DK)
You’ll want plenty of pieces in this game tonight, with its 233-point total and generous fantasy matchups. Memphis ranks sixth in fantasy points allowed to opposing SGs, and Huerter himself took advantage of the nice matchup with about 33 fantasy points the last time these teams played. He’s been consistently seeing around 35 MPG and converting that most nights into a fantasy point per minute. Consider him a safe cheaper option tonight.
Alec Burks, Philadelphia 76ers at Golden State ($4500 FD, $4800 DK)
Burks has been a bit less consistent than Huerter and others you could look to at SG tonight, but his salary reflects that. If you need to save, because you love the rest of your lineup and this is the amount you have leftover, I believe Burks can get you around 25 fantasy points. I mentioned the game factors already; the Warriors rank fifth in fantasy points to opposing two-guards, and Burks is going to continue to be utilized while Ben Simmons, Josh Richardson and Joel Embiid are out.
Josh Jackson, Memphis Grizzlies vs. Atlanta ($4600 FD, $4300 DK)
Josh Jackson’s breakout game against the Hawks this past Monday night sparked a nice three game run, which I fully expect to continue tonight. In those three games Jackson is averaging 17 points per game with a smattering of rebounds, assists, blocks and steals. Atlanta is the No. 1 SF matchup for fantasy, and Jackson represents one of the best value plays on the slate tonight.
Will Barton, Denver Nuggets at Cleveland ($5100 FD, $5300 DK)
Barton is a solid option just about any night, but although I haven’t picked on this game too much so far, Cleveland is the second-best overall matchup for fantasy. The Cavaliers rank first in turnover rate, and 30th in defensive efficiency. Barton went off for nearly 40 fantasy points earlier this season against Cleveland, so while I’m not guaranteeing a repeat performance, I do think he makes value tonight.
Also consider: Joe Ingles ($4000 FD, $4100 DK)
Royce O’Neale, Utah Jazz at Detroit ($4000 FD, $3800 DK(SF))
O’Neale has been overall disappointing given the amount of minutes he’s playing (around 30 MPG), but he has shown flashes of upside at this price. Power forward is pretty desolate in the bargain range of FanDuel, if you couldn’t tell. I think it’s a spot worth spending up on tonight.
Mike Scott, Philadelphia 76ers at Golden State ($4300 both)
Scott has strung together three consecutive value-meeting games with a range of 25-30 fantasy points. He’s another player I’m not really keen to roster, but if you have to save at this position he’s an option I can stomach given the opportunity, the game environment, and the price.
Gorgui Dieng, Memphis Grizzlies vs. Atlanta ($5000 FD, $4800 DK)
We will keep attacking this game. Dieng had his best game of the last two weeks against Atlanta, and before last night, was looking like a player you could trust. I would only consider Dieng for tournaments tonight given that he played only 18-19 minutes in the last two, but the matchup is good enough (and the price fair enough) to hope for a bounce-back effort.
Dewayne Dedmon, Sacramento Kings at Portland ($4500 FD, $4300 DK)
Dedmon returned with a splash Friday night, with 11 points, six rebounds and four steals vs. the Wizards. That he did all that in only 20 minutes gives me confidence that he’ll be ready for more of the same in another fantasy-friendly game tonight.