Scouting The NBA – 12/26/17

Plays of the Day

Value: Wilson Chandler remains a solid, if unspectacular value in a plus matchup against the Jazz. He’s met or exceeded value in seven consecutive appearances and is quite cheap on both main DFS sites.

Fade: Andre Drummond draws a juicy matchup on paper against the Pacers, but Indy center Myles Turner is playing much better of late and might be worth a look on the other side of the ball as a cheaper tournament play.

Point Guards

Elfrid Payton – (6,600 DK/7,300 FD)

Payton flashed his upside with a 30-point, 10-assist performance in Washington on Saturday. Orlando’s pace of play ensures that he’ll have plenty of opportunities to produce counting stats in transition and he’s had success against the Heat in the past, including a game with 13 points and 9 assists against Miami earlier this season. He’s under priced as a legitimate triple double threat and he could carry Orlando’s offense with three key players (Aaron Gordon, Evan Fournier, Nikola Vucevic) either questionable or ruled out tonight.

Isaiah Canaan – (4,700 DK/4,400 FD)

There’s simply no reason to ignore Canaan at this price tag and he draws a matchup that’s much better than perception might indicate. The Grizzlies have struggled mightily with Mike Conley (Achilles) out for most of this season, especially in terms of defending opposing PGs. Canaan went for 10 points, 3 rebounds and 4 assists over 24 minutes in a meeting with Memphis last Thursday and played 30 minutes in the Suns most recent game, as he’s clearly surpassed Mike James and Tyler Ulis and therefore should have a secure role even with Devin Booker (groin) expected to return soon.

 

Potential Value

Andrew Harrison – (4,100 DK/4,500 FD)

Harrison is a risky value as the Grizzlies best option at PG in a fast-paced matchup against Phoenix.

 

Longshot

Spencer Dinwiddie – (6,300 DK/7,400 FD)

Dinwiddie remains the best option in a Nets uniform with D’Angelo Russell (knee) out.

Shooting Guards

Victor Oladipo – (9,400 DK/9,600 FD)

Avery Bradley (groin) will remain out tonight, giving Oladipo a great chance to improve upon his already impressive splits against the Pistons this year. He’s burned the Pacers divisional rivals to the tune of 22.7 PPG despite shooting 35.5 percent from the floor over three meetings against Detroit this year, as Bradley’s elite defense certainly played a factor in that inefficiency. Dipo is obviously rolling with averages of 29.9 PPG, 6.3 RPG and 4.1 APG over 11 games this month and he’s not priced like other superstars producing at that level.

 

Austin Rivers – (6,600 DK/6,600 FD)

Rivers is still the 1B option next to Lou Williams, but both guards are looking to carry the Clippers offense with Blake Griffin (knee) out indefinitely. Struggling with efficiency at first, Rivers has found his stroke with 95 points on 33-for-61 (54%) FG shooting over his last three appearances. Up next is a Kings team that ranks 28th in defensive rating and 27th in opponents FG shooting (.471%) and solid young defender De’Aaron Fox (quad) won’t play for Sacramento.

 

Potential Value

Mario Hezonja – (5,000 DK/4,900 FD)

Hezonja should continue to see increased minutes and usage with Evan Fournier (ankle) and  Aaron Gordon (calf) questionable while Nikola Vucevic (hand) is out indefinitely.

 

Longshot

Donovan Mitchell – (7,300 DK/7,200 FD)

Mitchell remains a strong bet to carry the Jazz offense in what could be a high-scoring affair in Denver.

 

Small Forwards

Giannis Antetokounmpo – (11,500 DK/11,800 FD)

The Greek Freak was apparently slowed by a knee injury in win over Charlotte last Friday, but will be playing on three days rest tonight and he’s averaging 33 PPG on 62 percent FG shooting when given that much rest this season. Giannis snared 16 boards in a recent meeting with Chicago, which is playing with more pace during its recent surge while remaining vulnerable in the paint, as the Bulls rank 25th (.519%) in opponents 2PT shooting.

 

Wilson Chandler – (4,600 DK/5,000 FD)

Chandler is a crafty veteran, who is capable of meeting value at this modest price tag rather easily. He’s done just that in seven consecutive appearances and won’t have much trouble getting to the rim against a Jazz team that’s playing without Rudy Gobert (knee) and won’t give backup center Ekpe Udoh extended minutes because of his limitations on offense. The Nuggets versatile offense is slightly more effective at home and so is Chandler.

 

Potential Value

Denzel Valentine – (4,700 DK/4,700 FD)

Valentine doubled the value of his price tag in consecutive games before slowing down in a blowout loss at Boston over the weekend.

 

Longshot

Khris Middleton – (8,300 DK/8,000 FD)

If you’re concerned about Antetokounmpo’s knee, you could hedge your bets the other way by using Middleton in this plus matchup.

 

Power Forwards

Zach Randolph – (6,000 DK/6,000 FD)

With Blake Griffin, Danilo Gallinari and Wesley Johnson all inactive, the Clippers are forced to use an inexperienced rotation of Montrezl Harrell, Jamil Wilson and Sam Dekker at PF. None of those players stand much of a chance of stopping Zach Randolph, a savvy veteran scorer, who is averaging 21.2 PPG and 8.9 PPG over 10 games this month. He’s clearly the top option on a Kings team that has no other reliable source of offense and is worth deploying against the Clippers, who are coughing up the seventh-most PPG (22.29) to opposing PFs over the last month.

 

Lauri Markkanen – (5,500 DK/5,400 FD)

Markkanen offers about the same floor as flashier teammate Nikola Mitoric at a cheaper price tag. The versatile big man only played 26 minutes in a blowout loss to Boston on Saturday, but has looked sharp since returning from a back injury and matches up well against the Bucks under sized front line. Milwaukee is currently dead last in opponents 3PT shooting (.399%) and Markkanen is 34-for-90 (.378%) from deep over his last 16 appearances.

 

Potential Value

Trey Lyles – (4,500 DK/5,300 FD)

Lyles has been playing very well lately and will be motivated to face his former team.

 

Longshot

Aaron Gordon – (7,700 DK/7,200 FD)

Gordon could see heavy usage if he’s able to return from a calf injury tonight, because Nikola Vucevic is out indefinitely for Orlando.

 

Centers

Nikola Jokic – (7,900 DK/8,900 FD)

Jokic has played 36-plus minutes in all three of his last appearances and while he’s struggling in relative terms, he’s bound to turn it around now that h’es getting steady run. His ankle injury behind him, The Joker is in a great spot tonight against a Jazz team that’s struggled defensively without Rudy Gobert (knee), giving up the tenth-most FPPG (54.22) to opposing centers over the last month. Jokic has a couple of inches on 6-foot-10 backup Ekpe Udoh and he can carve up defenses with the space to pace or score from the high post.

 

Greg Monroe – (4,500 DK/5,000 FD)

Monroe remains under priced on both main DFS sites despite the fact that he has met or exceeded value in seven consecutive appearances. He’s averaging 11.1 PPG and 9.4 RPG during that span and flashed his versatile with seven assists in a meeting with Memphis last Thursday. He’ll face the same team on ample rest tonight and will once again draw a more favorable matchup against the Grizzlies PFs while Alex Len and Tyson Chandler deal with former Defensive Player of the Year Marc Gasol.

 

Potential Value

Bam Adebayo – (4,100 DK/5,300 FD)

Adebayo is playing well with Hassan Whiteside (knee) out and James Johnson (ankle) hobbled.

 

Longshot

Bismack Biyombo – (3,800 DK/4,400 FD)

Biyombo is a rebounding specialist, who will do his best to fill the void created by Vucevic’s injury.

 

Louis Cangiano
About Louis Cangiano 88 Articles
Louis Cangiano (NBA, NFL, MLB) has been an avid DFS player since his freshman year of college where he attended the University of Rhode Island. Louie’s major wins include 6th place at the DraftKings 2016 WFBBC in Toronto and 34th place at the 2017 FanDuel WFBC in Miami. Now a three-time live finalist, Louis is a full-time DFS professional residing in New York City, specializing in MLB, NBA and NFL GPP plays.