Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Doug Norrie

Daily Fantasy DraftKings and FanDuel NBA Picks - Friday, January 6, 2023

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Point Guard/ Shooting Guard

James HardenJames Harden FD - $10200 DK - $10100
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 52.62 DK - 57.37

It’s going to be tough choosing among some of the more expensive options on this slate because there are a number of superstars in great spots on Friday. One of them is James Harden who will once again be running without Joel Embiid in the lineup. With Embiid out of the lineup this season, Harden has a 32% usage rate and could be looking at around 20 shots in this game. He’s coming off an overtime win against the Pacers on Wednesday that saw him put up 26 points, eight assists, and six rebounds, a line that would seem on the lower end of his expectation with Embiid out of the lineup.

Along those lines, Tyrese Maxey (FD 7100 DK 7000) looks like he is back to full minutes now and is coming at a reasonable price on DraftKings.

Buddy HieldBuddy Hield FD - $6700 DK - $6200
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 33.28 DK - 37.1

Andrew NembhardAndrew Nembhard FD - $4300 DK - $3900
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 22.91 DK - 24.22

If looking for mid-tier or lower plays, there could be coming in this game between the Pacers and the Blazers. Both Hield and Nembhard are coming off playing 40+ minutes in an overtime game against the Sixers and Hield was particularly effective. He went for 22 points, nine rebounds, and six assists with his 22 shots, a team-high. The DraftKings price combined with extra points for the threes on that site make him an appealing option.

Meanwhile, Nembhard could be more of a price play option if punts don’t open up as we get closer to lock. The minutes should be in the 30s for the rookie though admittedly the fantasy production is a bit hit or miss. That being said, he’s coming on the lower end of the pricing scale and the sites have gotten significantly more efficient with salaries of late.

Josh RichardsonJosh Richardson FD - $4800 DK - $3800
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 24.28 DK - 26.9

Again, we might find ourselves hunting out some value on this slate on the lower end of the salary tier and Richardson could be in line for another big game. He was a chalkier DraftKings option on Wednesday with the news that Devin Vassell was out. That’s going to be the case again with the latter expected to miss some time and Richardson played 28 minutes last time out. Richardson played 29 minutes and finished with 20 points, four assists, and three rebounds. That’s plenty of production for someone coming so cheap on DK.

Small Forward

Giannis AntetokounmpoGiannis Antetokounmpo FD - $12000 DK - $12000
Opponent - CHA
Proj Pts FD - 62.84 DK - 66.75

Here’s where things start to get really interesting on the upper end of the salary scale for Friday. Along with James Harden, and Lebron who we will get to in a second, there’s also Giannis Antetokounmpo. The Bucks are facing off against the Hornets who rank in the bottom third of defensive efficiency and play a top-6 pace. That’s a sweet spot for opposing DFS value and we already know Giannis has about as high an upside as it gets. He’s scored 40 or more points in five of his last eight games and has 20+ rebounds in three of his last four. Dude is just on another level and he could be in for a monster in this one as well. He’s a very tough fade even at these outrageous prices.

LeBron JamesLeBron James FD - $11200 DK - $10700
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 57.01 DK - 61.16

And then there is LeBron James who will be facing off against the Hawks in a game that has one of the highest implied totals on the slate. He sat last game but is good to go in this one. And the Lakers are still without Anthony Davis for the foreseeable future. Lebron has back-to-back 40+ games and averaged close to a triple-double in those ones. He’s coming a bit cheaper on DraftKings where he makes for a high-floor play even in this salary tier.

I still think that without Zion Williamson, Herbert Jones (FD 5200 DK 4800), Trey Murphy III (FD 4700 DK 4900), and Naji Marshall (FD 4800 DK 5000) make for middle-tier value plays against Brooklyn.

Power Forward/ Center

John CollinsJohn Collins FD - $6500 DK - $6400
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 36.03 DK - 37.15M

Onyeka OkongwuOnyeka Okongwu FD - $6200 DK - $5700
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 36.89 DK - 37.61

Like I said with LeBron, this game has a high total and we are going to want some exposure for sure. That is going to come in the form of the bigs for both teams. With Clint Capela still on the shelf, John Collins and Onyeka Okongwu remain in line for big minutes and the Lakers are a good place to start when trying to hit a high fantasy ceiling. When he’s not in foul trouble, it sure seems like the plan is to play Collins in the mid-to-high 30s and he’s coming off back-to-back 20 and 10 games against the Kings and Warriors respectively.

Meanwhile, Okongwu has had foul trouble in his bag as well, and it’s been an up-and-down ride in his role as starter with Capela out. He has real fantasy upside if the minutes are there, but it hasn’t been overly consistent in the short term. That being said, the Lakers play the second-fastest pace in the league this season and are a bottom-third defense. That’s going to generate a lot of fantasy points and opportunities for opponents which is why I think we can stack the two Hawks bigs in this game.

Thomas BryantThomas Bryant FD - $6300 DK - $6200
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 39.77 DK - 42.29

With Anthony Davis out, Thomas Bryant has gotten the run at center for the Laker and has made the most of it from a fantasy perspective. Over the last four games, he’s averaging 18 points and 12 rebounds while also adding about a block a game. The price hasn’t caught up to his opportunity with this team right now and we are still getting him at a value even in the middle tier.

If Larry Nance Jr. is still out then Jonas Valanciunas (FD 6700 DK 6500) would make for a strong play against the Nets.




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