Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Jerry Vanderwoude

Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 12/19/18

After a quiet four-game Tuesday night the NBA comes out swinging tonight with an evening full of hoops action. We're looking at an exciting 12 game set starting at 7 PM ET with only a handful of early blowout concerns coming out of Vegas. We've got some high-paced, high-scoring affairs going on. There are some key names already ruled out, and attractive value plays ready to step in and fill the void. Let's break down Wednesday night in the NBA the DFSR way!!

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Point Guard

Derrick RoseDerrick Rose FD - $6200 DK - $6700
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 38.02 DK - 39.58
Rose drew the start for the ailing Jeff Teague on Monday and will likely slot in once again as Teague is going to remain out until at least Friday with that ankle issue. Don't let the 24 minutes fool you, the Wolves came out of the gate strong against the Kings and had the game well in hand early on. Vegas likes this one to remain a little more competitive with Minnesota favored by five. Rose has been showing a nice return to form early on this season, and he should be guaranteed to hit the thirty minute mark in another start enabling him to easily crush the 5X points per dollar (PPD) mark on these prices.

Ryan ArcidiaconoRyan Arcidiacono FD - $4200 DK - $3900
Opponent - BKN
Proj Pts FD - 24.13 DK - 24.79
If it's value you seek at the point then look no further than the Bulls' Ryan Arcidiacono. With Zach Lavine out for at least one more contest, Arcidiacono will likely remain running with the starting five as the Bulls host the Nets in The Windy City. Arcidiacono was a nonfactor for the Bulls in OKC on Monday night with just two points and a steal, but we can forgive that as the Thunder present the toughest DFS matchup at the position this season. Brooklyn meanwhile is about average surrendering the fourteenth most fantasy points to the position while also giving up the seventh most scoring points. Two nights before the Thunder game, Arcidiacono posted a 12/4/6/0/3 line against the Spurs, and I'd expect to see tonight's line fall somewhere in between which would be just fine at these prices.

Shooting Guard

Andrew WigginsAndrew Wiggins FD - $6000 DK - $5800
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 31.44 DK - 31.37
We're going to take our second look at the Timberwolves with Andrew Wiggins. This game has a modest 218 projected total coming out of Vegas, but most of the high scoring affairs also look to be potential blowouts so there are serious minutes concerns to take into consideration. As I had already mentioned this one has just a five-point spread and Wiggy should see a full allotment. Like Rose above Wiggins benefits greatly from Teague remaining sidelined. Per NBAWowy.com Wiggins sees a nearly two percent bump in usage with Teague off the court. Wiggins started out the month on a tear, and though he has cooled off some over his last two contests, the price has corrected accordingly putting Wiggins in an excellent spot against a Pistons defense that is slightly above average against the position.

Justin HolidayJustin Holiday FD - $5400 DK - $5500
Opponent - BKN
Proj Pts FD - 27.54 DK - 27.62
This is another game we're going to be all over tonight on both sides as the opening spread coming out of Vegas sits at just 1.5. At this point, what is there not to like about the older of the Holiday brothers? Justin Holiday has played big minutes in the starting five despite the return of Kris Dunn and Bobby Portis. He's averaging nearly 33 minutes over his last six games and posted over 30 FanDuel points twice in that span all for $5K and change. Then there's the matchup, which couldn't get much more favorable with Brooklyn surrendering the third most fantasy points to opposing two guards. Our projection system loves Justin Holiday tonight, and it's quite easy to see why.

Keep an eye on the Kings' SG news. Both Iman Shumpert and Bogdan Bogdanovich are questionable right now. It could open more minutes for Buddy Hield if they are thin at the wings.

There is also a case for Jrue Holiday with the Pelicans missing so many shots out from the offense.

Small Forward

Giannis AntetokounmpoGiannis Antetokounmpo FD - $11800 DK - $11100
Opponent - NO
Proj Pts FD - 63 DK - 64.24
Fortunately, we're looking at some potential value plays at other positions, because the three is looking like a position we may not be able to escape without dropping some hefty coin. We'll lead things off with the Greek Freak. Giannis has picked up this season right where he left off last season. He plays big-time minutes (over thirty in all but one of his last ten games) while doing spectacular things with those minutes. Five straight double-doubles. Ten straight games with five or more assists. Two blocks in four of his last six. The man is a production machine, and the price has come down in the short term compared to where it was through much of the early part of the month. The early word from Vegas has this game at an eight-point spread with a 233 projected total in a game against the team that runs the fourth fastest pace in the game while allowing the third-most fantasy points at the three. Alphabet comes into the day with the second highest raw points projection and is without question one of the top ways to spend up tonight.

Paul GeorgePaul George FD - $9400 DK - $8900
Opponent - SAC
Proj Pts FD - 49.39 DK - 50.23
Let's just say that hypothetically you're setting your lineup and you just can't fit Giannis in there even with the value plays out there. It happens sometimes, I know. I've been there. I urge you to look things over and try and make it work, but if you simply can't do it, then fortunately for you my friend we have a somewhat cheaper option in the form of PG13. For a sub $10K price tag, we get a player averaging 35 minutes per game this season, who has scored over 30 points in three of his last five posting a 24/8/4/0/3 line against the Bulls in just 30 minutes on Monday night. Our system isn't overly bullish on George from a PPD perspective likely due to the league average matchup. He's still a fine cash game play and does project for the third most raw points among players below the $10K mark, so if you do need to cut some salary, this is where you want to look. I still prefer Giannis but will likely toy with some lineups swapping in George to see where it takes me.

Jeff GreenJeff Green FD - $5300 DK - $4900
Opponent - HOU
Proj Pts FD - 29.75 DK - 30.19
Otto Porter remains out, and Jeff Green continued to draw the start once again last night for the Wiz alongside newly acquired Trevor Ariza. Green averaged 34 minutes in his last three starts heading into last night, with two 20 plus point performances and paid as much as 8X PPD on these prices. As of this writing, Green has 12 points, seven rebounds, and an assist through 30 minutes with a quarter left to play in Tuesday night's contest against Atlanta. Look for the Wizards to continue running Green out there for big-time minutes in the short term, and until the price catches up consider him a solid cash game option each time. Also consider Trevor Ariza if you think he runs heavy minutes again on Wednesday.


Power Forward

Anthony DavisAnthony Davis FD - $12700 DK - $11600
Opponent - MIL
Proj Pts FD - 67.93 DK - 67.44
The Pelicans are going to be extremely thin up front tonight as they head into Milwaukee to take on the Bucks. Nikola Mirotic will remain out, having missed two games with an ankle injury, while Julius Randle contends with his ankle issue suffered Sunday in Miami. This means Anthony Davis, who already puts up more production than some starting fives, will take on an even greater role for the Pelicans if that's even possible. Davis, who has averaged 38 minutes over his last three contests, with two 40 plus point games, two double-doubles, and an average of three steals per game in that stretch continually proves to be one of the preeminent big men in the game year over year. I think we can safely say the inherent risk that once came with locking in AD is now a thing of the past. These are two of the fastest teams in the league and rightfully so this game projects for one of the highest totals of the night. It would be best to figure out a way to fit both Giannis and AD together in your lineup, but be sure to have at least one.

Rondae Hollis-JeffersonRondae Hollis-Jefferson FD - $5600 DK - $5600
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 32.16 DK - 31.84
Rodions KurucsRodions Kurucs FD - $4400 DK - $3800
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 23.4 DK - 23.94
Back to the Nets game against the Bulls we go for a pair of value options. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson has been stepping his game up lately, scoring double digits in four of his last five games including a 20 point showing against the Knicks last week. He's averaged 28 minutes per game in that time and has seen up to 35 minutes of run time contributing plenty of peripherals to pad that fantasy value. Rookie Rodions Kurucs meanwhile, has worked his way into the starting five, and it seems that coach Atkinson plans on keeping him there for the foreseeable future. In his first two starts Kurucs averaged 29 minutes, 13 points, six rebounds, and 2.5 assists, then last night he posted just a 3/1/0/1/0 line in 17 minutes in the Nets win over the Lakers. The Bulls present a much more appealing matchup defensively, and with the Nets on the back to back, we know Kurucs wasn't worn down last night, so he could be well rested for maximum playing time tonight. RHJ is the safer play from a cash perspective, but Kurucs is quite intriguing in tournaments, especially if you're trying to run with ABC and AD elsewhere.

If he draws another start give some consideration to Larry Nance Jr. (CLE) on DraftKings for just $6300.



Karl-Anthony TownsKarl-Anthony Towns FD - $9900 DK - $9700
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 57.33 DK - 59.15
We'll start the five with our last look at the Wolves in the form of Karl-Anthony Towns. KAT has been on an absolute tear since the calendar flipped over to December, posting six straight double-doubles, doing so in just 21 minutes against the Kings on Monday night. Before that light workload, Towns was averaging 34 minutes per game this month and should see his full allotment in what promises to be a much more competitive outing against a Pistons team ranked average against opposing big men this season. Towns is ranked third behind Giannis and Davis in raw points projection in our system and won't eat up over 20% of your salary in the process. He's a top play in all formats, and a must have if you're forced to fade either the freak or the brow.

Jarrett AllenJarrett Allen FD - $6400 DK - $5500
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 33.29 DK - 32.13
One more look at Brooklyn for some value at the five. Jarrett Allen isn't exactly living up to the preseason hype expectations but has been putting up some solid numbers so far nevertheless. The minutes have been all over the place, from 14 to 38 on any given night, still, he's averaging 12.1 points, 8.1 boards, and 1.6 assists per game. Tonight he sees one of the best matchups a big man can ask for against a Bulls team allowing the third-most fantasy points to opposing centers this season. If you're forced to go cheap at the five consider Allen.



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