Welcome to the NBA GPP Pivots article, where we’ll be looking to uncover some sneaky-good DFS plays away from the popular selections. These recommendations are usually risk/reward commodities meant to be used in large-field tournaments. Typically, blending these low-owned hidden gems with well-aligned staples contributes to a viable GPP strategy.
Keep in mind that the following player write-ups were constructed earlier in the day, and sometimes injury/rest situations can alter the fantasy landscape. Monitoring our NBA News & Headlines Feed throughout the day will keep you in the loop while giving you the subsequent DFS consequences of each information piece.
We will be looking at Thursday’s five-game main slate starting at 7:30 ET.
Patrick Beverley - LA Clippers (vs. Orlando)
Paul George will remain on the sidelines, giving the rest of the Clippers’ lineup a boost. That includes Beverley, who has produced 35+ fantasy points in two of the past three without George. Tonight’s matchup looks somewhat mediocre on paper, but Orlando actually ranks 18th in defensive efficiency to point guards over the last 10 games. As a result, Beverley is a low-key source for solid DFS value.
R.J. Barrett - New York (vs. Phoenix)
I’m not sure how popular Barrett will be tonight, as some people will gravitate towards him after chipping in 39+ fantasy points in back-to-back games. Regardless, the rookie should probably be on your tournament shortlist. Guys like Donovan Mitchell, Lou Williams, and (maybe) Devin Booker could pull some ownership away from him. However, there’s a good chance Barrett will continue to excel while playing Phoenix (21st in d-eff to shooting guards) in one of the best game environments of the night. It’s no coincidence that Barrett’s recent uptick coincides with Frank Ntilikina missing the last two games. I’ll be making sure Ntilikina (questionable) is out before rolling with Barrett.
Mikal Bridges - Phoenix (at New York)
Mikal Bridges is coming off his best game of the season with 40 fantasy points in 32 minutes. Kelly Oubre Jr. is out with a concussion, so Bridges could see similar minutes in an effort to keep that momentum. It helps that he’s facing a New York team that ranks 28th in defensive efficiency to small forwards over the last 10 games. Sure, Bridges’ recent game log is scary, but he’ll have more opportunities to feast with Oubre sidelined.
Daniel Theis - Boston (at Milwaukee)
Jerami Grant and Michael Porter Jr. make for solid bargains at the power forward position, assuming Paul Millsap (questionable) misses another game. On the other hand, Julius Randle and Kawhi Leonard are two expensive lifts demanding attention here. Theis could get lost in the shuffle despite potentially seeing more minutes/usage if Jayson Tatum (questionable) is out. Theis made the most of that situation with 31 FP in 27 minutes last game, so keep an eye on Tatum’s status.
Bobby Portis - New York (vs. Phoenix)
Julius Randle is back in the mix after missing a few games, so that makes Portis’ minutes less stable. However, that didn’t seem to phase Portis last game, as he came away with 32 fantasy points in 27 minutes Tuesday at Milwaukee. He’s playing solid basketball at the moment while getting rewarded with more run. There’s no guarantee that will be the case on Thursday, but Portis could become one of the better values of the night if he continues to see 25+ minutes. Go ahead and gauge that risk/reward situation appropriately.
Eric Bledsoe - Milwaukee (vs. Boston)
This matchup doesn’t look good from a defensive efficiency point of view. However, we can expect a competitive (probably?) matchup with the Bucks hosting the Celtics in this Thursday showcase. Even though his efficiency could take a hit, there’s a chance Bledsoe will see 30+ minutes in a tight game. He has produced 40+ fantasy points in two of his last three, making some noise as a traditional risk/reward pick with boom-or-bust volatility.
Bojan Bogdanovic - Utah (at New Orleans)
Speaking of boom-or-bust, Bogdanovic is a streaky fantasy player who depends on hitting three-pointers for fantasy upside. That leaves him with a mostly erratic game log that tends to scare off potential DFS backers. Having said that, this is a great breakout spot while playing up in pace against a New Orleans team that ranks bottom five at defending three-pointers this season.