Finding Value: NBA 12/30 (Main) by @
**Please Read – I have changed all my writing to Fan Duel information because it seems that more people play NBA on Fan Duel than Draft Kings.**
Key: When looking at Target DvP it is figured based on a Poisson Distribution model. If you are unfamiliar with math, it basically means if the defense is averaging a 1, they are a typical defense for that position. If the defense has a number lower than 1, they are a better defense than average. If the defense has a number higher than 1, they are a worse defense than average. For the Target DvP they have a rating of 1.10 or higher. Stay away DvP they have a rating of .90 or lower. The Target/Stay away are based on a ten game trend.
*Note*: These are not meant for you to look at and take every player I have mentioned on this list. This list is simply players that are undervalued and in good positions. You need to look at the data and situations and make your own decisions on who you believe to be in the best position for the night. Also, some players may be ruled out that are in the data set, make sure to follow some sort of injury app like Basketball Monster or Fantasy Labs NBA to get the most up to data information on Twitter. We also have a link on the front of our webpage.
Link to spreadsheet:
Target DvP: NOP, DET
Stay Away DvP: LAC, HOU
In this article I will be going through the plays for the main slate value plays. T.J. McConnell pops up as the best play of the main slate. One of the reasons he has a bump is because I read that Rodriguez will not be playing, I assume he should see a lot more minutes. A couple issues I have with McConnell is that his floor, even if starting, is extremely low. Therefore, I cannot recommend that you play him in cash, but I think he is safe in GPPs. If you are trying to avoid that, Brandon Jennings and Derrick Rose are both in great spots against the Pelicans. Rose is a much more solid pick, averaging more points per minute, minutes, and usage, but it wouldn’t be the worst idea to roll both of these guys out in a GPP for such a low price. If you are trying to avoid the Knicks, Dennis Schroder is in a solid spot against the Pistons. Over the last 10 games he has a 1.19 points per minute and a huge usage offensively. It always is a positive to me when a guy is the one taking the last shot to win a game, and Schroder took two shots to beat the Knicks at the end of their last game. One situation to monitor is the status of Damian Lillard. If he is out again that will bring a huge uptick to CJ McCollum.
Top projections on the night are Damian Lillard, Chris Paul, Dennis Schroder, and Steph Curry.
Target DvP: HOU, LAC
Stay Away DvP: DET, DAL
The targets here are pretty much the exact opposite of the targets for point guard. Gary Harris moves to the top of the value charts against the 76ers. The 76ers have been solid at defending opposing point guards on the year and over the last 10 games, but Harris is priced well enough to take him based on the amount of minutes he plays. Harris should be able to easily hit value, especially if the game remains close. Nik Stauskas is at the top of the charts against the Nuggets if Gerald Henderson remains out. He has an absolutely horrid points per minute, which will make this pick a grind. However, he may play enough minutes to hit value and give you a nice return on paying for min value. If you are looking for something a little bit more solid, Will Barton has been playing a lot of minutes over the last 10 games. Barton is priced fairly low and has the highest GPP rating of players less than $5,500. He is an easy pick for cash games given his price. Last, Giannis Antetokounmpo is at a great price against the Timberwolves. Minnesota has picked up their defense over the last 5 games, but Giannis moves around three different positions and could be in for a high scoring game.
Top projections on the night are James Harden, Giannis Antetokounmpo, CJ McCollum, and Zach LaVine.
Target DvP: POR, LAC
Stay Away DvP: MIN, DAL
Coming off a great performance the other night, Andrew Wiggins is at the top of the value charts against a struggling Bucks defense. The Bucks haven’t been great against opposing small forwards and Wiggins could absolutely light up the scoreboard if he can get his shot to fall tonight. His usage rating has been going through the roof, but his points per minute is a little on the low side for an elite player. Speaking of elite, Kawhi Leonard seems to always have a great price tag and tonight is no different. Leonard has been averaging 1.42 points per minute over the last 10 games and should be well rested after missing the last game. Portland is fair at defending opposing small forwards, but if Damian is out again they could be scrambling. The only issue would be a blowout. If you are looking for some mid-range value, Trevor Ariza and Wilson Chandler are both reasonably priced. Ariza is in a much better position, averages more minutes, and has a higher points per minute rating. Now that I am writing about it, I am not sure why Wilson Chandler is priced $200 more than Ariza, oh yea it’s because Chandler seems to produce a little more on the boards. I don’t think you can go wrong with either of these picks tonight.
Top projections on the night are Kawhi Leonard, Kevin Durant, Andrew Wiggins, and Carmelo Anthony.
Target DvP: POR, NYK
Stay Away DvP: SAS
In terms of value, this is similar to the early slate; however, the options are a little more solid. David Lee and LaMarcus Aldridge come in as the best two plays for power forwards. My only issue with Lee is that his minutes just aren’t there; however, he typically will be able to hit about 15 fantasy points a game with minimal upside. If you are trying to force Anthony Davis in your lineup, Lee seems to be the best pair for that situation. Aldridge has been playing well over the last couple of games and should have a solid night against the Blazers. I really like pairing Aldridge and Leonard together in cash games. If you are trying to avoid Spurs because of the possibility of a blowout, Jabari Parker has been on fire over the last 10 games. Parker has seen a huge rise in his usage rating and could easily put in a lot of points tonight against the Timberwolves. My only concern is if he gets into some early foul trouble trying to protect the glass prowess of Karl–Anthony Towns. Another option at the same price is Paul Millsap against the Pistons. Millsap has been playing decently over the last 10 games, but always has a solid chance to hit 5x or 6x his value based on his ability to board, shoot, and pass.
Top projections on the night are Anthony Davis, Paul Millsap, LaMarcus Aldridge, and Jabari Parker.
Target DvP: NONE
Stay Away DvP: MIL, SAS
A lot of the better options for center are appearing in the early games; however, we can still find some decent value later. Jahlil Okafor has seen his stock drop considerably over the last month, but you know what they say… buy low sell high. Okafor still has a decent 0.89 points per minute over the last ten and is averaging a respectable 25 minutes per game; however, there are some nights where he looks like the worst player in the league. If you aren’t comfortable with picking him, Zaza Pachulia is in a revenge game against the Mavs and has been playing well over the last 10. Obviously, the big issue with taking Zaza is that he is the last option on the court during every possession and must get his points protecting the rim and grabbing boards. However, he is a solid pick if you are trying to get high level guys in other spots. Joel Embiid is at a nice price against the Nuggets. He should play and the Nuggets aren’t the toughest draw in the world. The only issue would be if he grabs a couple of fouls early. If you are looking to avoid the 76ers, DeAndre Jordan is at a nice price against the Rockets. He has a very high GPP rating and the game should be a high paced game and have enough shooting to give Jordan the opportunity to grab 14+ boards.
Top projections on the night are Karl-Anthony Towns, Joel Embiid, Dwight Howard, and Andre Drummond.
Thanks a lot for reading! If you have any questions feel free to contact me on twitter.
Chris Hollander @UndoneRSG
About the Author:
“CH” aka @UndoneRSG, has been playing fantasy sports since 1997. He made the transition from season long to daily fantasy sports in 2014 and hasn’t looked back. In college, Chris wrote his thesis on “Beating PECOTA ranking system” and came out with a ranking system that was equivalent with PECOTA. He has been obsessed with using statistics in fantasy ever since. Current math teacher, he is working on a ranking system for PGA and NBA that should be out shortly.