Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
DFS NBA Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - Tuesday 1/4/22
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Yeah, I know this isn’t exactly the way you might want to start out considering the kind of game Westbrook had last time out. He struggled, to say the least, with 20 points, five assists, three rebounds, and 9!!! turnovers in the win over the Timberwolves. It was kind of a mess, but at least helped to keep his price from climbing. So there’s a positive I suppose. Today he gets a better matchup against the Kings who rank 24th on defense and run the fifth-fastest pace. This is one of the better teams you can face in DFS and the game should be up and down the court. The implied total is the highest on the slate before.
The Spurs are another team dealing with injuries and Covid protocols right now, leaving more minutes in the backcourt for guys like Tre Jones. He got the start last game and ended up playing 32 minutes in an overtime loss to the Pistons. Jones was largely effective with 15 points on 6-10 shooting while also adding in seven rebounds. Some of his minutes went to Bryn Forbes off the bench with the latter actually closing the game, so that is a bit of a concern. But the price on Jones is still firmly in the punt play range which makes playing him in cash a lot less risky. Keep an eye out to see if the Spurs switch up their starting lineup here, but Jones should be good to go.
White is the major beneficiary of Dejounte Murray being out of the lineup for the Spurs and he sees a usage and just general on-ball uptick in this situation. White played 42 minutes in the overtime game on Saturday and put up an impressive 18 points and 14 assists in the loss. I think the minutes should trend on the higher side once again. The price is starting to push towards the breaking point even with the opportunity increase, but I still think he’s in play on this slate considering the state of the Spurs.
Duane Washington Jr. FD - $4000 DK - $4000
Opponent - NY
Proj Pts FD - 27.96 DK - 30.08
The Pacers’ backcourt has been decimated in the short term and they are running a bit of a skeleton crew back there right now. Without Malcolm Brogdon and Caris Levert specifically, they’ve had to call on Washington to run major minutes in the short term. He racked up 20 points on 8-17 shooting last time out against the Cavaliers. I think the minutes will once again be in this range for Tuesday’s game against the Knicks who aren’t likely to put up tons of defensive resistance. Washington is a bit scoring dependent for his fantasy production which makes him a bit risky, but that’s wrapped up in his price which is still quite low.
Strongly consider Devin Vassell (FD 4800 DK 4400) is he’s once again in the starting lineup.
LeBron James FD - $11400 DK - $11400
Opponent - SAC
Proj Pts FD - 65.28 DK - 68.66
Since Anthony Davis went down with injury, Lebron James has had to pick up a massive load for the Lakers who need every bit of his production in order to stay afloat. Over the last eight games, LBJ is averaging 35 points, 10 rebounds, and six assists while playing more than 36 minutes per game. He’s in line for similar production tonight against the Kings in what should be a faster-paced game. Considering the matchup and his recent production, it sure looks like Lebron will be one of the more popular plays on the slate, and for good reason. There are some other ways to save on this slate with teams banged up in protocols, so fitting the salary or even pairing him with Russ shouldn’t be an issue at all.
Justin Holiday FD - $4600 DK - $4900
Opponent - NY
Proj Pts FD - 24.92 DK - 27.85
Holiday is another Pacer who’s been asked to play major minutes with the backcourt issues for the team. He played 37 minutes before fouling out in the loss to the Cavaliers last game. He got up double-digit shot attempts and finished with 18 points thanks to knocking down 6-9 from three. That’s obviously a bit of run-hot but his price isn’t going to kill you either. Small forward, especially on FanDuel is something of a problem position with not a ton of value beyond Lebron. I do think that in general we want to go a little cheaper here so playing Holiday in the mid-tier is a fine move.
Power Forward/ Center
Jalen Smith FD - $5800 DK - $5500
Opponent - NO
Proj Pts FD - 36.91 DK - 38.54
The Suns have been starting Jalen Smith with both Deandre Ayton and Javale McGee out in the short term, and the second-year center has been making the most of the opportunity. Over the last four games, he’s averaging 16 points and 10.5 rebounds with minutes in the mid-to-high 20s. This kind of production easily gets there on these price points which have failed to adjust in the short term considering his new role on the team. He’s been highly-owned over the last week and that is set to continue on Tuesday as well. Even in the middle-tier, Smith makes for a pretty easy call here all things considered.
Obi Toppin FD - $5300 DK - $5200
Opponent - IND
Proj Pts FD - 37.57 DK - 39.47
With some of the Knicks' frontcourt banged up or in protocols, Toppin was called on for major minutes last time out, a loss to the Raptors. He played 45 minutes in regulation and finished with 19 points, six assists, and six rebounds, easily paying off these salaries. Of course, he needed a ton of minutes to get it done, something we should keep in mind for this game. The Knicks could be getting Mitchell Robinson back for this game which could present an issue, but in reality, Toppin is really the only guy, except for maybe Kevin Knox, who can play the four for this team right now. I still think the minutes will be on the higher side and because he contributes across the stat line I think he’s pretty safe on these prices.
Damian Jones FD - $4000 DK - $4000
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 26.9 DK - 29.5
Damian Jones should still be in the starting lineup for the Kings with Richaun Holmes out and is coming way too cheap on both sites. He played 29 minutes last time out against the heat and put up a double-double with 18 points and 10 rebounds. The Lakers have been going a little more small ball of late which could put some of Jones’s minutes in jeopardy if there is no effective defensive assignment for him, but I’m willing to take that risk at these price points.