The Philadelphia 76ers are one of the worst frontcourt defenses in the game so Andre Drummond should have a field day against them on Wednesday. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s NBA contests.
Stephen Curry, Warriors, $19,200 – Vegas isn’t messing around after projecting three straight close games for the Warriors in which they won each by 30-plus points. On Wednesday, the Warriors are favored by 15.5 points at home against the Dallas Mavericks and the projected over/under sits at 215 (the highest on the slate). What really is there to say about Stephen Curry at this point? In 13 games this month, Curry is averaging 29.6 points per game (PPG) on 51.6 percent shooting including 5.4 three-pointers made (3PM) per game. He has scored at least 30 points in eight games this month and in four of his last five games. Curry sat out the first meeting against the Mavericks this season but averaged 45.4 fantasy points against them last season including a 51 point (PTS), four rebound (REB) and four assist (AST) game that resulted in 67.5 fantasy points. There is no safer option on the slate, and with how thin the Suns are, there is sure to be enough value to warrant spending up on the reigning MVP.
Kyrie Irving, Cavaliers, $11,700 – Most are going to look at the 16 point spread and avoid rostering any of the Cavaliers staples due to a threat of only playing three quarters. While it is certainly possible against a depleted Suns team that is already bad, there are a few factors on Kyrie Irving’s side. First and foremost, the Cavs have won in blowout fashion (more than 14 points) three times this month and Irving scored at least 23 points in two of those three games. Secondly, Coach Tyronn Lue has been extending the starters’ minutes in his two game tenure. While the sample size is small, it’s all we have to go on and removing Richard Jefferson from the rotation has freed up plenty of additional minutes for the mainstays in the rotation. Lastly, the Suns allow the second most fantasy points to opposing point guards (PGs) and are the worst defensive efficiency team against opposing backcourts in the game. My thought process is if the Suns are going to get blown out, a lot of the production is going to come from Irving anyways. He is nowhere near where his price is going to eventually peak as he settles into the rotation so there is plenty of room for profit potential. While there is a bit of risk involved, I have no issue using in cash game formats to go along with his viability in tournaments.
Archie Goodwin, Suns, $9,000 – As stated in the above tidbit, the Suns/Cavs game is expected to be a blowout. This almost does not matter for Archie Goodwin because the Suns legitimately have no one else. If the game were to get out of hand, say 20ish points by the start of the third, Sonny Weems would likely run the point for the final 12 minutes. Outside of the extreme blowout scenario, Goodwin has to play big minutes by default. He is the only true healthy ball-handler on the team and he scored 20 real points for the third consecutive game on Tuesday. Right now Goodwin and Devin Booker constitute a majority of the Suns offense and have to play a majority of the minutes. This allows them an off shooting night because the volume will be there and both their prices still remain lower than top scoring options on a team should be. Goodwin was around 90 percent owned on Tuesday and he should be yet again on Wednesday although I think some will be wrongfully dissuaded by the potential one-sided game.
Andre Drummond, Pistons, $15,100 – I have overlooked Andre Drummond for a couple of weeks now due to poor, slow-paced matchups or just simply better options to spend up on but that time is now officially over. I am interested in almost any center who faces the lowly 76ers but am especially intrigued when that player leads in the NBA in both rebounds and double-doubles. In one previous meeting this season, Drummond dropped an 18 and 16 double-double on Philadelphia en route to 51 fantasy points. Only the Lakers are worse in terms of defensive efficiency against centers (Cs) and only the Pelicans and Lakers allow more fantasy points to the position than the 76ers. Essentially, there is no excuse for Drummond to struggle in this game especially if Jahlil Okafor suits up. Regardless, Drummond should dominate Okafor or Nerlens Noel so don’t overthink it, roster the 20/20 threat and enjoy.
Andrew Wiggins, Timberwolves, $11,700 – Andrew Wiggins has a very interesting trend developing against the Oklahoma City Thunder. He has faced them six times in his young career and scored at least 18 real points in each game. In two previous meetings this season, Wiggins scored 22 and 25 real points in what always turn out to be up-tempo contests between the two teams. Wiggins’ usage percentage for the season sits at 28.2 percent but it rises to 31.5 percent in games against the Tunder. Yet again the Timberwolves are projected to score 101 points so there’s no reason to believe Wiggins will not once again put together a respectable outing. Unless the game goes to overtime I’m not sure he has 40 fantasy point upside but he’s an excellent high floor cash option.
Dirk Nowitzki, Mavericks, $11,300 – Comparatively to last season, Dirk Nowitzki’s minutes are up a little over one per game so it’s not a surprise his fantasy points per game have increased from 29.6 to 31.8 per game as well. The Mavericks will draw the most difficult matchup in basketball Wednesday when they head to Golden State to face the defending champs who are blowing everyone out recently. In order to compete with the Warriors, a team is going to have to score points and Nowitzki will need to be leaned on to produce them for the Mavericks. The team managed 114 points in the first meeting and Nowitzki put up 35 fantasy points in just over 28 minutes. Deron Williams sat that game out and J.J. Barea exploded for 23-3-6. Regardless of the PG situation, the ball will be dropped down to the post many times and Nowitzki will be expected to pull of his patented fade-away. Since the pace of this game should be better than usual for the Mavericks and they are likely to play their starters big minutes to try and get a victory, Nowitzki is a great bet to exceed value at this mid-tier price. UPDATE: Dirk Nowitzki and Zaza Pachulia will sit out on Wednesday. The likely fantasy replacements are Dwight Powell and Raymond Felton as I think the team will go smaller more often.