DFS Basketball: January 2nd Slate

Welcome back! It’s time for another DFS Basketball preview, brought to you by Turning Two Sports, where we DO care about your fantasy team!

In order to set a perfect lineup on DraftKings, we want to look for players who will provide 5x their salary in returning point output. So if Steph Curry comes in at $9,000 and James Harden comes in at $9,600, Curry needs 45 points to return value while Harden needs 48. To think about it on the fly, just do this:

(Salary * .001 * 5) <= DFS Points

Now with that said, here is the overall record for the season. I’m considering a miss as anything less than 4x value (Blue snowflake on DraftKings). A hit is anything at or above 5x value (Red flame on DraftKings). Displayed below is the format “Hits – Misses”

Season Record: 144-83 (63.4% hit rate)

Top Game Stack: Atlanta Hawks @ Phoenix Suns (-1.5): Over/Under 218

Point Guard

Tyreke Evans $8,200 – It’s really hard to ignore what Evans is doing for the Grizzlies in Conley’s absence, and the constant increase of pricing reflects that. I never thought I’d have to pay over 8k ever again for Tyreke, but here we are. Believe it or not, 8.2k is a discount. He’s set to face off with a depleted backcourt of the Clippers, who continue to be abysmal defensively. Consider this: Evans needs 41 to hit value, and he’s come in over 40 in each of his last six. He’s also locked into minutes in the mid-to-upper thirties. Target: 41

Dennis Schroder $7,300 – Schroder is my favorite point guard play of the night. While Lillard will be returning in a prime spot against Cleveland, I can’t help but think his shot could be rusty after missing the last few weeks. Since Napier is now no longer must play, I’ll look to Schroder who has a fantastic matchup with Phoenix, who is the absolute worst in the league defending point guards. This is my favorite game of the night to stack for obvious reasons. It has the highest O/U of the night, and the lowest spread. That means there will be no defense whatsoever, and plenty of scoring. There are a ton of guys in this game worth rostering, but I look no further to start than Schroder. Target: 36.5


Shooting Guard

Devin Booker $9,100 – My biggest salary play of the night will be Booker, for many of the same reasons I mentioned with Schroder. Booker is option A and often times options B and C for the Suns this season. He’s always a liability on defense, so you know you need some scoring for him to hit value. That especially rings true at 9.1k, which is steep. In his 3 games since his return, he’s actually hit value at current price point in two out of three. The one time he didn’t was against the ultra-slow Kings team, which doesn’t concern me tonight as he has a date with the Hawks. Start confidently. Target: 45.5

A decent punt play here if you decide to pay up for Blake Griffin is to give a look at Marco Belinelli. He doesn’t start, but has easily surpassed 5x value in each of his last three. He will come off the bench for Atlanta and see plenty of Booker’s non-existent defense. At 3,800 on DraftKings, he’s the best pivot of the bunch if you decide to go Griffin instead of Booker.


Small Forward

Taurean Prince $5,500 – It’s either Prince or Warren, but I’ll pivot down to the cost savings of Prince. I also consider him safer. Prince is really hot right now, coming off back to back double doubles that included a 52 DK point performance on December 29th. His salary is just too low right now for a guy guaranteed 30 minutes and coming in as hot as he is. Lock him in. Target: 27.5

James Ennis $3,300 – Ennis is usually a guy I look towards when Memphis is short staffed. Chandler Parsons is set to miss the game again tonight, which gives Ennis a good chance to hit value at 15 DK points and see another 20-25 minutes. He’s hit value in four of his last five, and should be able to do it again as I expect him to soak up some of the minutes Parsons will leave behind. He’s by no means safe, but there’s not much out there for punt plays tonight. Target: 16.5


Power Forward

Ersan Ilyasova $5,100 – Other than an extremely tough matchup with Toronto, Ilyasova has been very reliable for the Hawks this season. He’s destroyed 6x value in four of his last five games, never mind the 5x value. The Suns are bottom 3 in the league defending opposing power forwards, so Ilyasova has clearance for a huge Tuesday in the DFS world. I will no doubt lock him in as my PF, given his surefire 30 minutes and prime matchup. Target: 25.5

Jeff Green $3,800 – I originally had Belinelli, but I’m pivoting to Jeff Green with the recent news that Kevin Love missed morning shootaround with an illness. Green has been an excellent bench presence for the Cavs in his first year with the team. He’s also coming off a near 10x value explosion against Utah, and will undeoubtely be the main beneficiary (along with Tristan Thompson) if Love is set to miss the game tonight. Even if Love plays, I will probably keep Green in. He has a very good chance to hit value while Portland’s top defenders Nurkic and Aminu will be tied up with LBJ and Love if he plays. Target: 19



Dwight Howard $7,400 – Hopefully people are scared off of Howard after the odd New Year’s Eve clunker against the Clippers. I’m looking past that matchup though, and looking forward to a prime matchup with Cauley-Stein tonight. While WCS is a great basketball talent, he doesn’t have the size to keep up with Howard all night, and nor does Z-Bo. I see no reason Howard doesn’t bounce back tonight and return to his 40+ DK point performance that he had in each of the previous three before New Year’s Eve. His price is simply too low, all things considered. Target: 37

If you can pay up, play Blake Griffin against Memphis. While the matchup isn’t great, he’s clearly the top scoring option on the slate after LeBron, and comes in at a much more economical price than LBJ.


Lineup 1:

PG – Dennis Schroder $7,300

SG – Devin Booker $9,100

SF – Taurean Prince $5,500

PF – Ersan Ilyasova $5,100

C – Dwight Howard $7,400

G – Tyreke Evans $8,200

F – James Ennis $3,300

U – Jeff Green $3,800

Best of luck everyone. Thanks for reading and appreciate the support. Go make some money!

Published by

Matt Hicks

Matt’s writing is focused on dynasty and devy fantasy football. He loves blending his experience writing research in the field of education with fantasy football stats. Matt currently lives in Baltimore, MD and graduated from Eastern Connecticut State University and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. You can follow Matt on Twitter: @TheFF_Educator

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