Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Austyn Varney

Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 1/12/19

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Point Guard

Russell WestbrookRussell Westbrook FD - $12400 DK - $11800
Opponent - SA
Proj Pts FD - 58.98 DK - 61.13

We'll kick things off at point guard in Oklahoma City, where the Thunder will host the Spurs. These teams played an intense OT game just two nights ago and it'll be a fun rematch. Westbrook dominated the Spurs interior and ended up with 78 fantasy points, including a whopping 24 assists. He does whatever he wants against White and Forbes and we should see another 55+ easy fantasy points. The game is expected to be close and this Spurs team is no longer a match-up to be worried about. Especially against premier athletes that can get to the rim. Their interior is putrid. Westbrook is an elite play in all formats and it just comes down to the price.

Kyrie IrvingKyrie Irving FD - $8300 DK - $8700
Opponent - ORL
Proj Pts FD - 41.23 DK - 41.93

Kyrie hasn't went off since returning from injury, but he got over 30 minutes last game and should start turning the corner tonight. The Magic are an average match-up for point guards and play at a relatively slower PACE. Kyrie should be able dominate D.J. Augustin and his price is just too low if he's going to get 30+ minutes. He consistently sits over 45+ fantasy points when healthy and I don't think we will see his ownership get over 25%. I'm fine with Irving in both cash games and tournaments.

De'Anthony MeltonDe'Anthony Melton FD - $4400 DK - $4800
Opponent - DEN
Proj Pts FD - 26.76 DK - 25.83

If you're looking to pay down at point guard, De'Anthony Melton is a solid option. His minutes have been a bit up and down as of late, but they are a bit safer with Devin Booker out. He's currently doubtful to play and all signs point to him at least taking one more game off. If Melton grabs the start, it's safe to expect 30 minutes and 25 fantasy points. He's always heavily involved when on the floor and will very rarely bust when given the opportunity. Melton's value comes from his ability to contribute across the board, but that usually means he can chip in enough to get to value on these low prices. He's a solid option in all formats.

Shooting Guard

Torrey CraigTorrey Craig FD - $4300 DK - $4500
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 24.93 DK - 25.11
Malik BeasleyMalik Beasley FD - $3900 DK - $4400
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 25.27 DK - 26.03

With Gary Harris once again questionable, these guys could very well be some of the top value plays on the entire slate again. They both put up 30+ fantasy points in 30 minutes of action against the Clippers, and were extremely involved. They follow it up with an even better match-up against a Suns team that doesn't play much defense. They're both extremely cheap and I will have a hard time staying away from either. Monte Morris would also be in play, but he's not a lock for nearly as many minutes. If Harris ends up being ruled out, Beasley and Craig are elite plays in all formats. If you made me pick one, I'd take Craig due to his involvement in the offense.

Jrue HolidayJrue Holiday FD - $8600 DK - $7800
Opponent - MIN
Proj Pts FD - 38.36 DK - 38.85

Shooting guard has a few strong options and then the rest of the position. Those value plays could very well end up being 40-50% owned each, so anyone else will be a bit contrarian. Derozan, Holiday, and Mitchell will all split ownership near the top and our favorite is Jrue Holiday. Holiday has fresh legs and has been playing exceptionally well as of late. He draws a match-up against a Timberwolves squad that is very average defensively and like to run the floor. Wiggins will likely draw Holiday, and while he's a good defender, the T-Wolves still rank league average against the position. Holiday is as consistent as it gets and always has the potential for a huge game.

If the Jazz are missing every single person again you can also look at Donovan Mitchell, who had the ball in his hands constantly against the Lakers. Be careful though since it's the second half of a back to back.


Small Forward

T.J. WarrenT.J. Warren FD - $6800 DK - $6800
Opponent - DEN
Proj Pts FD - 36.44 DK - 36.27
Paul George is the way to pay up small forward. He could definitely pay off, but he just played nearly 50 minutes against this team and only put up 48 fantasy points. He's been back to normal as of late and I think the flashy numbers start going back to Russ Westbrook. We'll instead look towards T.J. Warren, who's a lot cheaper and very safe. He's been putting up 30 fantasy points every night and has the ability to drop 45 if he gets hot. It's also a strong match-up with the uncertainty around the status of Gary Harris. The price is perfectly fine on both sites and he's a solid play in both formats. This is a game we want to target and Warren gives you exposure at a position that doesn't have much opportunity cost. If Booker unexpectedly returns, Warrens value goes way down.

Royce O'NealeRoyce O'Neale FD - $3500 DK - $3900
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 19.83 DK - 19.95
Joe InglesJoe Ingles FD - $6000 DK - $6000
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 33.46 DK - 34.06
These guys are mostly in play if every single primary ball handler sits like they did last night. O'Neale saw 39 minutes last night under those circumstances, so it's up in the air whether or not he will run it back. If he does get those minutes again, he's a lock at the price. He produces when on the floor and the Jazz don't have anybody outside of Mitchell that dictates many shots. As for Ingles, he's more of the consistent mid-range play with upside. He's going to play 30 minutes on a nightly basis and will almost always match with a fantasy point per minute. Against a Chicago Bulls team that likes to run and doesn't play much defense at all, Ingles won't have any problem. He touches the ball on almost every possession and seems to get involved all night long. If you watch this game, it'll feel like Ingles plays a role in every scoring play.

Kelly Oubre Jr.Kelly Oubre Jr. FD - $4900 DK - $4400
Opponent - DEN
Proj Pts FD - 27.4 DK - 27.09

Oubre has been over 30 minutes in each of the last two games, and his price has slightly risen. He's still cheap enough, though, and makes for a great value play at a pretty weak small forward position. It might just be a big tournament play if the Jazz guys have outsized opportunity again, but Oubre is safe for the minutes and has been great when on the floor. He stands out a lot more on this team. He's also trusted to shoot and doesn't have much competition if Booker is out. Oubre Jr. is a solid option in all formats but currently he looks more like a big tournament play.

Power Forward

Paul MillsapPaul Millsap FD - $6700 DK - $6200
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 35.42 DK - 34.04

Paul Millsap's true rotation looks like 30+ minutes right now. When he does get those minutes, he produces. The Suns are a great match-up for power forwards and Millsap is as consistent as it gets when actually on the court. His price is very fair on both sites and you don't really need to sacrifice anywhere to fit him. Let's get to some cheaper options.

Richaun HolmesRichaun Holmes FD - $3800 DK - $3800
Opponent - DEN
Proj Pts FD - 26.01 DK - 24.42
Josh JacksonJosh Jackson FD - $5100 DK - $5600
Opponent - DEN
Proj Pts FD - 28.86 DK - 28.85

We'll stay in the same game and go to the other side of the rim. Let's start with Josh Jackson. He's been over 30 fantasy points in three straight contests and is going to see 30 minutes tonight. There isn't much downside in this match-up for an athletic forward like Jackson, unless the game gets out of hand and he loses his minutes. We also have Holmes, who's way cheaper and in a solid spot. He's been over 30 fantasy points in 3 of the last 4 games and should see 25+ minutes against a big Nuggets squad. Both of these guys can be played in all formats.



Nikola JokicNikola Jokic FD - $11000 DK - $10800
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 55.46 DK - 56.99

Some in Minnesota and Golden State may strongly disagree, but I think Jokic has cemented himself as the league’s premier center. He may not have the power of KAT or Boogie, but he more than makes up for it with craft. He’s a phenomenal rebounder and passer, on top of his elite scoring skills. The Suns are as good of a match-up as you can get, as they don’t play any team defense and Ayton is terrible down low. Jokic should put up 50+ fantasy points tonight and I’ll be on him in every lineup that I can fit him in.

Rudy GobertRudy Gobert FD - $8400 DK - $8200
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 47.17 DK - 46.47

You know what you’re getting here with Rudy Gobert. As long as the game stays remotely close, you’re going to see 30+ minutes and 40 fantasy points. The Chicago Bulls are one of the worst defensive teams in all of the game and rank in the bottom 3 against opposing centers. Gobert is going to beast on the boards and should grab a quick and easy double-double. He’s extremely safe in all formats and my favorite way to get away from Jokic at such a high price. You'd normally be concerned about him on the second half of a back to back, but it's nice that he saved his legs a bit in the blowout. Good luck tonight and feel free to comment down below with any questions or comments! Thank you!



3 Visitor Comments

  1. Great article like always.
    Suggestion: how about a GPP article just for members ?

  2. Great stuff as usual. I appreciate the big tournament advice.

  3. No Pelicans or Wolves. Ok.

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