Andre Drummond’s price tag is absurdly cheap so go ahead and take advantage of the pricing glitch while you can. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s NBA contests.
Mike Conley, Grizzlies, $14,000 – On paper, the matchup against Chris Paul is a difficult one as the team ranks third in defensive efficiency versus opposing PGs and Paul ranks second amongst Clippers starters in both defensive rating (DRtg) and defensive box plus/minus (DBPM). Additionally, the Clippers allow the lowest FG percentage to the PG position so scoring theoretically should be difficult to come by in this matchup. However, Mike Conley has absolutely dominated Paul in each of his two meetings this season; in those two meetings, Conley has produced 58.50 and 55.75 fantasy points respectively including scoring exactly 30 real points (PTS) in each. Furthermore, Conley will head into Thursday having topped 41 fantasy points in five consecutive games and he has played at least 35 minutes in every game during that stretch. It should be noted he squared off against Patrick Beverley during that stretch and he also faced the slowest paced team in the league (Mavericks). Right now, he is simply matchup proof and he is too cheap for someone playing this incredibly well. While this is a bit of a risky spot due to the individual matchup, it is one I will be taking a shot on to differentiate from the field.
D’Angelo Russell, Lakers, $13,400 – On a five game slate, it would be foolish to overlook a game with a projected total 7.0 points higher than any other contest. Yes, the Lakers/Suns tilt opened with a 230 point total and the Suns are listed as 7.0 point favorites. The problem with the Suns, assuming Eric Bledsoe is active, is their minutes have been all over the place as of late. On the other hand, Earvin “Magic” Johnson has helped solidify the minutes for the Lakers’ young building blocks since he took over basketball operations for the team. As a whole, the Suns rank 26th in defensive efficiency versus opposing backcourts and they allow the absolute most PTS per game (PPG) to guards as well. In fact, only five teams are allowing more PTS per possession (PPP) on spot up shots than the Suns and D’Angelo Russell specialized as a spot up shooter. In two meetings against the Suns so far this season, Russell is averaging 1.13 fantasy points per minute (FPPM) and Russell has now played 29-plus minutes in each of his last six games including 33-plus minutes in four of those contests. Assuming he is given the minutes once again, he has the potential to crush value.
Marc Gasol, Grizzlies, $13,900 – Although DeAndre Jordan rates as a solid defender by a plethora of metric, the Clippers still rank 17th in defensive efficiency versus opposing Cs. Similarly to Conley, Marc Gasol has enjoyed some success against the Clippers this year as he has posted 46.50 fantasy 45.50 fantasy points in his two meetings against them respectively. Vegas expects this one to be close as the Grizzlies opened as 1.5 point home favorites even with the Clippers playing on the second end of a back-to-back. Luckily for Gasol, Jordan is a 45th percentile defender against spot up shooters and Gasol excels in the mid-range which partially explains his previous success. As icing on the cake, the Clippers are posted up on at the sixth highest frequency of any team and have allowed the 13th most PTS to players in the post. At this price tag, Gasol is averaging 2.82x value or enough to put a team on pace for 282 fantasy points in an average outing. His average outing against the Clippers has resulted in 3.39x value or enough to put a fantasy team on pace for 339 fantasy points so he is a great play in and all formats.
Julius Randle, Lakers, $13,300 – Despite going nuts against the slow-paced Mavericks in his last game, Julius Randle is a better play in faster paced environments. Why? Randle runs fast breaks an awful lot for a forward as evident by the fact he ranks right below Ricky Rubio and Emmanuel Mudiay in terms of frequency (based on percentage). Of course, the Suns play the third fastest brand of basketball so this matchup fits the bill. On top of that, the Suns rank 18th in defensive efficiency versus opposing PFs and Randle has topped 30 fantasy points against them in each of his last four meetings despite only playing 30-plus minutes in two of those contests. Since Johnson joined the organization, Randle has seen a spike in playing time including 33-plus minutes in each of his last two games and two 50-plus fantasy point outbursts in his last four games. In this conducive atmosphere to fantasy production, Randle possesses the same sort of crazy upside in this game and the sky is seriously the limit.
Andre Drummond, Pistons, $12,700 – When do you ever see Andre Drummond at a sub-$13,000 price tag? This literally makes no sense as Drummond produced a 14-15 double-double last night and has now topped 39 fantasy points in five of his last six games. The individual matchup against Tristan Thompson certainly is not ideal but it does not exactly dictate a $1,300-plus discount. To put this into perspective, Drummond has topped 3.09x value in five of his last six games so simply more of the same would put a fantasy team on pace for 309 fantasy points…and Drummond has scored at least 38 fantasy points in four of his five meetings against the Cavaliers over the last two seasons. Nothing about this price tag makes sense so go ahead and just make sure to take advantage of the nonsensical discount.
Alan Williams, Suns, $12,300 – Fantasy world: Alan Williams is a stud. On a per-36 minute basis, Williams is averaging 18.0 PPG, 15.2 rebounds per game (RPG), 1.5 steals per game (SPG) and 2.3 blocks per game (BPG) or the equivalent of 46.30 fantasy points. In other words, it does not take Williams long to rack up the production somewhat similarly to the likes of Nikola Jokic although Williams is not a plus passer. Not only do the Lakers rank dead last in defensive efficiency versus opposing Cs but they allow the third most RPG and third most PPG to the position so this matchup is incredibly juicy. It would be shocking if Williams did not finish with another double-double so deploy him with confidence yet again.