Henson Presents “The Muppets”

Athletic centers have been dominating the Wizards lately so fantasy owners would be crazy to not fire up John Henson on the early slate today. Check out daily fantasy expert Ricky Sanders’ recommended plays to help you fill out your roster for today’s NBA contests.


Guards (G):

Bradley Beal, Wizards, $14,900 (Early) – The addition of Malcolm Brogdon to the starting lineup leaves an inferior defender (by the metrics) on Bradley Beal by the metrics. While Khris Middleton has allowed the most points to spot up shooters of any player this season, Brogdon rates the worst of any of the starters in terms of both defensive rating (113) and defensive box plus/minus (-2.1). Basically, either of the two defenders who will be habitually matched up against him do not stand much of a chance to slow him down. On competing sites, Beal is priced above 16-percent of the overall budget whereas he will cost less than 15-percent on FantasyDraft. In his last meeting against the Bucks, Beal only shot 37-percent from the field, but he took 19 shots and still scored 20 points (PTS). Some positive regression should be on the horizon this go-around and Beal should be a safe investment in all formats.


Klay Thompson, Warriors, $13,200 (Late) – The Warriors are being implied to score a whopping 118-points as a road favorite on Monday which is a huge total. Over the course of the last two regular seasons, Klay Thompson has scored at least 24 PTS in every meeting against the Cavaliers, and he has hit at least four three-pointers in each game. Only the Thunder, Bulls and Nuggets have allowed more points this season to spot up shooters than the Cavaliers and the team ranks 22nd in defensive efficiency versus opposing shooting guards (SGs). The defensive focus will be on Kevin Durant and Stephen Curry, as is always the case when teams are facing the Warriors, and the Cavaliers do not possess anyone capable of staying with Thompson. With Curry on the floor, Thompson is more efficient (1.04 fantasy points per minute (FPPM)) than without the star ball-handler (0.92 FPPM), so Curry’s return to the rotation last game only helps his cause. All signs point to another big scoring performance from Thompson.


Forward/Centers (F/C):

Kevin Durant, Warriors, $18,300 (Late) – One member of the Warriors is simply not enough in a game with this high of a total and Kevin Durant has topped 47 fantasy points in all three of his regular season meetings versus the Cavaliers since joining his new team. Thus far, the Cavaliers defense has been a disaster, as they rank 29th in overall defensive efficiency. As noted in the Thompson tidbit, they struggle against spot up shooters, and no one on the Warriors averages more points per game (PPG) on spot up shots than Durant. Over the course of the last two seasons, Durant has averaged 49.03 fantasy points per game (FPPG) when the total closed over 230 points. If not for the game where he left due to injury two minutes in, Durant would be averaging 49.13 fantasy points in games with 230-plus over/unders on the road during that span. Combine all these factors and it is easy to why an underpriced Durant is a building block on the evening slate.


Steven Adams, Thunder, $12,200 (Late) – To this point, only the Cavaliers have allowed more points per possession (PPP) to roll men in the pick-and-roll than the Kings. Of course, this is excellent news for Steven Adams who averages the 13th most possessions per game as the roll man in pick-and-rolls…and that is not where the favorability of the matchup ends. No team has allowed more rebounds per game (RPG) to opposing centers versus the Kings and they rank dead last in defensive efficiency versus the position as well. What more needs to be said here? Adams is quietly averaging the third most FPPG (29.9) on the team, edging out Carmelo Anthony (29.8), and it is largely due to his improvement in the rebounding department (8.6 per game this year compared to 7.7 in 2016-17). If you do not start Adams here, you are probably never going to use him, because this matchup is the nuts.


John Henson, Bucks, $8,600 (Early) – Centers have crushed the Wizards lately and especially ones who rely on hustle as opposed to pure skill. Dating back to Jan. 6, here are the fantasy point outputs for centers against this team: 36.25 for John Henson, 42.25 for Ekpe Udoh, 50.75 for Bismack Biyombo and 27 for Jarrett Allen. What do all these players have in common? They are long in wingspan and rely on their athleticism to succeed. Hell, Henson is in the sample size against this very team, and he has topped 30 fantasy points in each of his two matchups versus the Wizards. Henson is usually volatile but the combination of pace and Marcin Gortat’s lack of his athleticism set up insanely well for him today. Lock him in and reap the benefits.


Kyle O’Quinn, Knicks, $7,400 (Early) – Guys and gals, Enes Kanter played 36 minutes last night and this is a guy who has played more than 20 minutes just twice on the second end of back-to-backs all season long (in a seven-game sample). He is normally an easy fade on the second end of back-to-backs but this is the easiest fade of the year. Meanwhile, Kyle O’Quinn is coming off a 13-10 double-double in his last game on the second end of a back-to-back, and he has managed at least 26 fantasy points in each game against the Nets this year. At $7,400, O’Quinn only needs to produce 22.25 fantasy points to exceed 3.0x value and put a fantasy team on pace for over 300 fantasy points. However, if his previous sample size is indicative of his upside in this spot, he may be one of the few players on the slate with 4.0x value upside or more. Seriously, O’Quinn is the definition of a sharp play on a slate that is difficult to find ways to differentiate.


*Statistics are accurate as of Sunday, January 14

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders

Ricky Sanders is a fantasy sports expert with over 15 years of playing experience. After starting several freelance fantasy sports blogs, Ricky moved up in the fantasy industry when he joined Going9 Baseball. He wrote fantasy baseball content and had a weekly radio spot on the site’s SiriusXM Satellite Radio show. Shortly thereafter, in early 2013, Ricky joined RotoExperts as a three-sport fantasy contributor, eventually becoming one of the site’s lead basketball writers. While writing for RotoExperts, Ricky was introduced to daily fantasy sports and immediately fell in love. With help from some of his mentors, some of the best DFS players in the world, he honed his skills and became the daily fantasy expert he is today. When RotoExperts created a daily-focused website called DailyRoto.com, Ricky was brought on as one of the main contributors. He still makes frequent appearances on the RotoExperts SiriusXM Radio show and on the FNTSY Sports Television Network, talking daily fantasy sports. He also continues to write for a few DFS content sites: RotoCurve and The Fantasy Fix. Ricky is a proud and active member of the Fantasy Sports Writers Association. He has agreed to be a writer and representative for the FantasyDraft brand and serves as an ambassador to the site. He has no more access to the site than the typical user. Don’t hesitate to contact Ricky with questions on Twitter @RSandersDFS.

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