Damian Lillard - Portland Trail Blazers (vs. Milwaukee Bucks)
Lillard is still without McCollum, Nurkic, and Jones. It’s clear Portland’s star point guard is putting this team on his back until they become fully healthy. Can he continue to do so tonight? Well, against a tough defender in Jrue Holiday, the answer is not clear. Jrue Holiday is actually a solid defensive matchup for Lillard and there is a scenario where Lillard cannot score at will against Milwaukee’s polished starting guard. The Trail Blazers are - 9 point underdogs. Lillard is actually a GPP pivot tonight if you can believe it. His tough matchup, low projected roster percentages, and high salaries make him the perfect GPP pivot as I expected him to be rostered by very few. This is a leverage play. We are rostering him not for his matchup but for the lack of people expected to play him.
Other PG Option: Jrue Holiday - Milwaukee Bucks (vs. Portland Trail Blazers)
Wayne Ellington - Detroit Pistons (vs. Denver Nuggets)
The Detroit Pistons are not as bad as their record would entail. The Pistons have some serious talent and oddly enough a lot of the offense is now run through Wayne Ellington. Ellington has averaged 22.4 DK points per game over his last six games. More importantly, he’s averaging 28.5 MPG (minutes per game). The Rotoworld NBA Optimizer has him for 21.3 DK points tonight and 19.9 points on YahooDailyFantasy. The Pistons are +350 underdogs but I think they can pull out a win here tonight. Denver is on the back end of a back to back and the matchups are in favor of the Pistons. The Pistons money line is my Bet of the Night. For this to happen, Ellington will have to play very well and I believe he will, leading the Pistons to a shocking win over the Denver Nuggets.
Other SG Option: Alec Burks - New York Knicks (vs. Chicago Bulls)
Khris Middleton - Milwaukee Bucks (vs. Portland Trail Blazers)
Middleton has a solid matchup against any and all replacement players for Jones and McCollum. Whether it is Gary Trent Jr., Nassir Little, or Carmelo Anthony, Middleton will have the advantage. Jrue Holiday and Giannis Antetokounmpo also have significant advantages making Milwaukee my second favorite bet of the night. My first favorite will be included above today’s Bargain Bin. For daily fantasy success tonight, you will need to nail down this game.
Other SF Options: RJ Barrett - New York Knicks (vs. Chicago Bulls)
Julius Randle - New York Knicks (vs. Chicago Bulls)
Randle is averaging 46.0 DK points per game over his last six games. Over the season, he’s averaged slightly over 47 DK points per game. This guy is as consistent as they come and has a solid matchup against the Bulls tonight. I will mention going forward that I like the Bulls Centers tonight. Don’t let that take away from my confidence in Julius Randle tonight. If this game stays close, Randle could be in for a slate breaking night. The Knicks are +3.5 point underdogs with a 218.5 O/U.
Other PF Option: Lauri Markenan - Chicago Bulls (vs. New York Knicks)
Chicago Bulls Centers (vs. New York Knicks)
Three stats have stayed very consistent for the Knicks this season. They allow the lowest three-point percentage in the league but they allow the 4th most offensive rebounds in addition to the 3rd most blocks allowed in the NBA. All three of these stats will benefit Chicago’s Center(s). The problem is, who gets the minutes at C tonight for the Bulls? Daniel Gafford is my prediction. Last game, he played only 10 minutes so I am worried about this one. If you can figure out who gets the majority of playing time at the center position for Chicago, lock them in because they’re in for one good matchup.
Other C Option: Andre Drummond - Cleveland Cavaliers (vs. Minnesota Timberwolves)
Bet of the Night
PG Alec Burks
PF Will Barton