Basketball Lineups Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Joel Bartilotta

FanDuel NBA Picks and DraftKings NBA Picks - Saturday, 1/18/20

Before a tiny two-game slate on Sunday, we have a nice nine-gamer here. There are two games being played earlier in the day but we're going to go ahead and avoid those. What's also good news is the fact that we have every game starting by 9ET, making the injury reports much easier to figure out. With that in mind, let's get into our favorite plays of the day!

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Point Guard

Chris PaulChris Paul FD - $7100 DK - $7000
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 37.5 DK - 38.19

It's hard to understand why these sites keep Paul's price so affordable. Over his last 21 games played, Paul is averaging 38.9 DraftKings points per game across 33 minutes of action. That's the dude that we loved in his Clipper days and why he should be $1,000 more on each site. What makes him really attractive here is the matchup though, with Portland owning a 26th OPRK against opposing point guards this season. That's clear when you see that CP3 has at least 36 fantasy points in two of his three games against Portland this season. 

Markelle FultzMarkelle Fultz FD - $5400 DK - $6200
Opponent - GS
Proj Pts FD - 32.2 DK - 32.04

Fultz just recorded the second triple-double of his career earlier this week against the Lakers and that emphasizes just how much he's grown this season. Not only has he scored at least 26 DraftKings points in eight of his last nine games, Fultz is also averaging 32 fantasy points per game in that span. The thing that's really added to his value is the fact that D.J. Augustin is injured. Those two were essentially splitting the point guard minutes before and his absence should guarantee Fultz 30-35 minutes every night. We happen to love this matchup against a Golden State club who sits 23rd in defensive efficiency as well. 

Shabazz Napier is definitely too cheap with Jeff Teague being shipped off to Atlanta. 

Shooting Guard

D'Angelo RussellD'Angelo Russell FD - $7300 DK - $7400
Opponent - ORL
Proj Pts FD - 38.01 DK - 40.28

Russell is quietly having a nice year for the Warriors and it's clear that he's going to remain a stud as long as Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson remain out. The simple fact is, there's no one else on the roster to compete with his touches. That's why he has a 33 percent usage rate with this current roster while averaging 19 shots per game. Having those usage numbers has led to him averaging 39.2 DK points per game for the year which makes this price tag all the more surprising. We have to love him whenever Golden State is projected to play in a close game too, with Orlando entering this matchup as a projected 3.5-point favorite. 

Donovan MitchellDonovan Mitchell FD - $6600 DK - $7600
Opponent - SAC
Proj Pts FD - 39.47 DK - 40.79

This is yet another one where it's hard to understand the pricing. Mitchell has been performing at an $8,000-level all season long and this $6,600 price tag on FanDuel is downright insulting. Outside of one dud against the Hornets in which he played just 21 minutes in a blowout, the Utah guard has at least 31 FanDuel points in 16 of his last 17 games. He's actually averaging 38.3 fantasy points per game in that span as well while taking 19.4 shots a game across 36 minutes of play. While we do expect Mike Conley to return here, it's not going to impact Mitchell's value with Conley likely looking at limited minutes. Playing Sacramento is simply a bonus, with the Kings owning a 27th OPRK against shooting guards this season.

Josh Richardson is handling the ball a lot more with Joel Embiid sidelined and is a good play against the Knicks. 

Small Forward

Pascal SiakamPascal Siakam FD - $7600 DK - $8000
Opponent - MIN
Proj Pts FD - 39.23 DK - 40.04

Siakam has been a little slow in his return from injury but he has too much upside to be sitting in this price range. We're talking about a guy who's averaging 44 DraftKings points per game for the year, sitting at $9,100 on DK in his last game. An $1,100 price drop is silly and we have to believe that he'll return to that early-season form sooner rather than later. A matchup against the T'Wolves is a good way to kick-start that run, with Minnesota surrendering the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing small forwards while sitting fourth in pace. 

Cedi OsmanCedi Osman FD - $4600 DK - $5000
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 24.88 DK - 25.71

We anticipate Kevin Love sitting this game out in the second half of a back-to-back set and Osman is always the primary beneficiary with him off the floor. In the last six games with Love out, Osman is averaging 25 DK points per game across 29 minutes per action. That alone is 5X value at this price tag and two of those games happened to be blowouts as well. That definitely shouldn't be the case here, with the Bulls being a 5.5-point favorite. If we get a close game and get Love sitting, Osman should be looking at 35 minutes and 7X potential. 

OG Anunoby remains a great value and LeBron James is obviously one of the best plays on the board if Anthony Davis sits again. 

Power Forward

Lauri MarkkanenLauri Markkanen FD - $5000 DK - $6000
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 30.81 DK - 31.7

While Markkanen has been disappointing for most season-long fantasy owners, he's becoming very intriguing for DFS purposes with his price tag. This is still a guy who's averaging 29 fantasy points per game for the year and that should only rise with Wendell Carter Jr, Daniel Gafford and Otto Porter all injured. That should force Lauri into more usage, rebounds and shots, which is all we can hope for with a talented player like this. One of the major reasons we like him today is this matchup, with Cleveland sitting 29th in defensive efficiency. In his one game against the Cavs earlier this year, Markkanen had 33.5 DK points across 27.5 minutes, despite having most of those aforementioned guys available. 

Luke KornetLuke Kornet FD - $4200 DK - $5500
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 28.78 DK - 27.18

Let's keep the Bulls rolling with the beast, Luke Kornet. All kidding aside, Kornet has stumbled into one of the biggest roles of his career because of the injuries to Gafford and Carter. In the two games without those two, Kornet has scored at least 27 FanDuel points in both. That's stupendous production from a $4,200 player and he remains way too cheap over there. Getting to face a 29th-ranked Cleveland defense is the icing on the cake and that doesn't even take into consideration that they surrender the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing centers, which is where Kornet will play most of his minutes. 

If you hate the Bulls and Anthony Davis remains out, Kyle Kuzma should start and remain a solid value. 


Tristan ThompsonTristan Thompson FD - $5800 DK - $6600
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 33.89 DK - 35.12

With Love likely sitting this game out, Thompson should take on the bulk of the rebounding while seeing an increase in offensive usage. That's all you can ask for when talking about a hustler like this, with Thompson playing the best basketball of his career. Not only is he averaging 32.3 DK points per game for the season, Thompson is also averaging 36 fantasy points per game over his last six fixtures despite posting a dud in his most recent outing. The best part about this might be the matchup though, with the Bulls surrendering the most fantasy points in the league to opposing centers. 

Marc GasolMarc Gasol FD - $5000 DK - $5100
Opponent - MIN
Proj Pts FD - 28.24 DK - 27.93

Gasol just returned from injury and that has kept his price way too low. Before getting injured on December 18, Gasol was averaging 38.5 DraftKings points per game over his previous four fixtures. That stretch certainly carried over in his first two games back, dropping at least 32 fantasy points in both. That's way too much fantasy production from a player in the $5,000-range and it's clear the return from injury is what's kept him as such a good value. We love the matchup against a 25th-ranked T'Wolves defense as well, opposing a defensively-inept Karl-Anthony Towns

There is a chance that Marc Gasol could sit in the second half of a back-to-back set. DeAndre Ayton was the next player up on my list, dropping a 20-20 game on Thursday. He remains in the $8,000-range which is too cheap for him and gets to face an undersized Celtics frontcourt. 






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