Nov 18, 2016; Charlotte, NC, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard Kemba Walker (15) reacts to a basket in the second half against the Atlanta Hawks at Spectrum Center. The Hornets defeated the Hawks 100-96. Mandatory Credit: Jeremy Brevard-USA TODAY Sports FanDuel NBA
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FanDuel NBA – Lucky 7’s – Top 7 Plays for December 12
Welcome to FanDuel NBA Luck 7’s where I lay out my top 7 players who are simply intriguing buys for their respective match-ups. The “confidence” ratings in s reflect how risky each player is with “$” being very risky, and “$$” being a pick I’m very confident about.
Pros: Kemba is currently listed as probable for a knee bruise that no one has indicated he’ll miss any time with, so hopefully this will keep his ownership percentage somewhat low for those scared of the GTD tag. He’s been under the radar for most of the year and it shows with his current salary sitting at $7,600. Last year Kemba’s salary hit $9,200, so that serves as a good reminder as to what caliber of player he is.
Anytime Kemba is under $8k and the match-up is good I have a hard time betting against him and I believe in what he can do against Indiana who give up 107.5 points a game. Typically Kemba is the kind of player that shows up when his team is the underdog, and the Pacers are not an insurmountable favorite of just 2 points. I also like this game to go into overtime of any game on the slate.
Cons: Although I really doubt it, there’s no telling if that bruised knee is really bothering him or not, so definitely keep an eye on his status closer to lock tonight. Charlotte’s 2nd leading scorer Nicolas Batum may get increased run and opportunities to score if Kemba’s knee becomes any slight of a reason for McMillan to reduce his minutes, or if he comes out of the gate cold.
Nov 25, 2016; Memphis, TN, USA; Miami Heat guard Tyler Johnson (8) dunks as Memphis Grizzlies guard Andrew Harrison (5) defends at FedExForum. Miami defeated Memphis 90-81. Mandatory Credit: Nelson Chenault-USA TODAY Sports
Pros: For what Tyler Johnson’s upside is, I like his price at $5,400 if he can get adequate minutes of the bench playing alongside the likes of Josh Richardson and Goran Dragic. That’s an estimated 27 FDP against a mediocre Washington defense allowing 106 points a game this season. He recently cashed in 40.9 FDP against Atlanta who usually give guards a rough time, so I like him to exploit this matchup against the Wizards.
I believe Josh Richardson’s return hurts Dragic’s value and his $7,200 salary more so than Johnson’s at $5,400, even if that means Johnson comes off the bench. I think Josh Richardson is an intriguing player himself to pair with Johnson. $10,000 for two guards logging solid minutes against unlucky Washington at home could yield fantastic numbers.
Cons: Johnson is still a slightly risky play not so much for his salary, but one of your two PG slots. If he doesn’t cash in something close to 28 FDP it could spell an ugly night for your lineup, with so many other options at PG. He’ll be sharing the ball and minutes with Goran Dragic, Josh Richardson and an emerging Wayne Ellington if Spoelstra doesn’t opt to send him back to the bench. If Johnson is aggressive with the ball and takes it to the rack, he has much more value than if he opts to facilitate and try to get everyone involved for Miami, which hopefully he doesn’t try too hard to do.
Dec 10, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Dallas Mavericks guard Seth Curry (30) shoots the ball during the second quarter against the Houston Rockets at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports
Pros: Seth Curry has already cashed in 2 23 point games this season and has been averaging 25 minutes over his last 2 games. The Denver Nuggets make for a great opportunity for Seth to hop back into fantasy relevance at home. Denver surrendered 32 points to Brandon Knight the first time Denver played Phoenix, and the second time gave up 35 to Eric Bledsoe and 30 points to Devin Booker. It’s safe to say Denver right now is one of the best teams to exploit scoring guards against.
Cons: Seth is obviously buried underneath Deron Williams, Wesley Matthews, and Harrison Barnes for minutes. If Dallas doesn’t get a comfortable lead Curry may not see much action. With Wesley Matthews doing so well for his $5,700 lately, averaging 31 FDP over his last 5 games, Carlisle may simply stick to him to continue to get it done in scoring with Dallas struggling against a game that they really need. In all honesty, I think Seth is the type of player you go after only if you’re really swinging for the fences with an extra $4.5k and SG slot.
Dec 2, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Houston Rockets forward Sam Dekker (7) dunks the ball against Denver Nuggets forward Kenneth Faried (35) and forward Wilson Chandler (21) and guard Emmanuel Mudiay (0) in the fourth quarter at the Pepsi Center. The Rockets won 128-110. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Pros: If Houston can get a solid lead in the first quarter D’Antoni may use it as a chance to utilize his prospect against a team averaging a league-worst 115 opponent points per game. Sam Dekker has very effective per 36 minute averages across the board this season with 13 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal. Brooklyn actually has some pesky scorers playing opposite Dekker in Bojan Bogdanovic and Sean Kilpatrick, so he may see increased run for what he provides on defense.
Cons: With as inconsistent as Houston has been this year I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see this game stay close for at least 3 quarters. If that’s the case, D’Antoni may just rely too heavily on James Harden, Trevor Ariza, and Patrick Beverly to keep the lead out of reach for Brooklyn, eliminating most of Dekker’s chances to generate his own numbers. Like Seth Curry, Dekker is a deep sleeper who you should look to only if you’re stumped at SF with an extra $4k or so to spare.
Dec 7, 2016; Brooklyn, NY, USA; Denver Nuggets forward Nikola Jokic (15) keeps Brooklyn Nets guard Sean Kilpatrick (6) from the net during the fourth quarter at Barclays Center. Brooklyn Nets won 116-111. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
Pros: With as slow as Dallas plays, I think the game will play out at a tempo that caters eloquently to what Jokic provides as a passing bigman and effective rebounder. Wilson Chandler is currently listed as questionable which would obviously yield very well for Jokic’s scoring numbers. Over his last 3 games Jokic is averaging 32.5 FDP a game, so he’s a player you should definitely consider rolling the dice on tonight if you have an open PF spot and $5.6k to spare.
Cons: Jusef Nurkic poses the most imminent threat to Jokic’s rebounding and scoring numbers against Dallas especially with Andrew Bogut out. If Wilson Chandler does play, it could be toxic to Jokic’s value considering that Dallas only averages 95.5 possessions a game, which may not offer enough opportunities for Jokic to get actively involved in the offense.
Dec 9, 2016; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Atlanta Hawks forward Paul Millsap (4) and Milwaukee Bucks forward Jabari Parker (12) battle for a rebound in the fourth quarter at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports
Pros: Toronto is a team that scores 111 points a game which Milwaukee is going to have to somehow match with. Jabari’s current ticket of $6,200 is the lowest hanging fruit from what I can see on the tonight’s slate. I think it would be foolish to bet against him and his ability to create his own shot and be effective from beyond the arc against this high-tempo Toronto team. I think he’s a much better play than Giannis whose ownership percentage is likely to be higher in a game where Milwaukee is going to need efficient scoring.
Cons: Even though I’m not high on Giannis, he could end up being the Buck who takes this game over, and his salary is ok at $9,800, but I think your SG slots are simply worth more than him in this particular game. I can’t bet against Jabari in what should be a high-tempo, competitive matchup against conference rivals. I would just be stunned if Jabari doesn’t cash in at least 38 FDP against this Raptors team tonight.
Dec 9, 2016; Sacramento, CA, USA; Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins (15) reacts to a missing a shot against the New York Knicks during the fourth quarter at Golden 1 Center. The Knicks defeated the Kings 103-100. Mandatory Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Pros: Coming off of an unsurprising 35 FDP clunker against Utah, Cousins salary has dipped $200 to a moderate $11k. If I guaranteed you he was going to put up 58 FDP tonight for that against the Lakers would you take it? I would and I think that’s on the lower end of what Cousins can put up in what is sure to actually be a competitive game for two Western Conference teams in the hunt for a lower pick in the lottery.
Before that game in Utah, Cousins was averaging 59 FDP a game in his prior 6 games. I don’t see the Lakers being able to put up much of a fight down low with the likes of Timofey Mozgov and Tarik Black trying to stop him.
Cons: If the Lakers turn this into a run and gun game with Lou Williams apparently channeling Kobe from beyond retirement, Rudy Gay for $7k would yield much more fantasy value than Cousins in scoring, running with them. Rudy is the only real threat on the Kings I can see giving Cousins issues in his production.