Friday features an 11-game slate starting at 7 p.m. ET.
Let’s dive into some of the top plays using the FantasyLabs Tools and metrics.
Note: Projections and Leverages Scores/Ratings may change throughout the day after this article is posted. The NBA DFS landscape changes quickly. Consult the Player Models directly for any updates as we get closer to lock.
Ja Morant has had an awesome year for the Grizzlies, and he’s coming off a monster performance in his last outing. The team was playing without Desmond Bane, Dillon Brooks, and Kyle Anderson, and Morant responded with 67.0 DraftKings points thanks to 33 points, eight rebounds, and 14 assists. All three players will be sidelined again for the Grizzlies on Friday, so Morant will once again be asked to pick up the slack. He’s increased his usage rate by +3.2% with Bane, Brooks, and Anderson off the court, resulting in an average of 1.51 DraftKings points per minute.
Donovan Mitchell remains out of the lineup for the Jazz, which gives a sizable boost to the rest of their offense. Mike Conley stands out as one of the biggest beneficiaries. He’s increased his production to 1.00 DraftKings points per minute in four games without Mitchell this season, and he played nearly 34 minutes in his last outing.
Gabe Vincent is another nice source of value at point guard on Friday. The Heat are currently down both Kyle Lowry and Tyler Herro, which leaves the team without two of their top backcourt options. Vincent has started in place of Lowry recently, and he’s coming off nearly 37 minutes in his last game. Vincent has averaged 0.85 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, so he’s capable of taking advantage of a few additional minutes.
Cade Cunningham continues to run poorly for the Pistons. He fouled out in just 20.6 minutes in their last contest, and he’s now played 27.6 minutes or fewer in three straight games. That has kept his fantasy production modest, which has caused his price to plummet to just $5,200 on FanDuel. That’s a comical price tag – it results in a Bargain Rating of 99% – and Cunningham is going to smash it as soon as he returns to his usual workload.
Jordan Clarkson is another strong option for the Jazz with Mitchell sidelined. He’s seen one of the largest spikes in value with Mitchell off the floor this season, increasing his usage rate by +4.2%. He’s also increased his fantasy production to 1.05 DraftKings points per minute in that situation, and he’s currently projected for 30 minutes in our NBA Models. That should be more than enough playing time to pay off his $5,800 salary.
Jalen Suggs’ playing time is trending in the right direction. He was playing reduced minutes after returning to the lineup following an extended injury absence, but he racked up 33.8 minutes in his last outing. Suggs has also increased his production to 1.08 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, so he can do plenty of damage with that much playing time. He’s one of the best values of the day at just $4,800 on DraftKings.
Derrick White has been priced down to just $6,000 on DraftKings, resulting in a Bargain Rating of 94%. That makes him an elite buy-low target vs. the Nets. He’s averaged a dominant 1.20 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, but he’s been kept under 30 minutes in each of his past three games. However, the Spurs’ past two games haven’t been competitive, so he has the potential for a few additional minutes on Friday.
The Warriors should provide some decent value on this slate. They lead all teams with an implied team total of 119.5 points in an elite matchup vs. the Rockets, and they’re going to rest Klay Thompson and Andre Iguodala on the second leg of a back-to-back. That makes Gary Payton II a nice value option at just $3,600 on FanDuel. He should see a few additional minutes, and he’s averaged 1.05 FanDuel points per minute this season.
Small forward stands out as a great position to spend down at on Friday, but LeBron James is always worth some consideration at the top of the pricing spectrum. He’s had to do everything for the Lakers following the injury to Anthony Davis, and he’s averaged a stout 1.67 DraftKings points per minute over the past month. LeBron has also played at least 37.3 minutes in three of his past four games, and he faces a Magic squad that ranks 25th in defensive efficiency.
Joe Ingles moved into the Jazz’s starting lineup in their last contest, and he responded with 28.25 DraftKings points over 31 minutes. Ingles hasn’t been quite as productive this season on a per-minute basis, but he remains a solid target with Mitchell out of the lineup. He’s currently projected for 31 minutes in our NBA Models, and Ingles has historically averaged a Plus/Minus of +4.09 with a comparable salary and minute projection (per the Trends tool).
John Konchar might be an even stronger value than Ingles. He’s been the superior producer of late, averaging 0.92 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, and he should see a comparable workload for the shorthanded Grizzlies. He racked up more than 32 minutes in his last outing, and he’s projected for a similar workload on Friday.
DeMar DeRozan could garner lower ownership than usual, even though his $8,400 salary on FanDuel comes with a Bargain Rating of 92%. He posted a massive 38.9% usage rate in his last contest, and he should continue to log a few additional shot attempts with Zach LaVine and Lonzo Ball sidelined.
Jaren Jackson Jr. is one of my favorite plays on the entire slate. He’s massively underpriced on DraftKings – his $6,300 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 97% — and he’s been arguably the biggest beneficiary with Brooks, Bane, and Anderson off the floor this season. He’s seen a team-high usage bump of +5.0% in that situation, resulting in an average of 1.50 DraftKings points per minute. That represents a massive increase from his season average of 1.13, and he racked up 48.75 DraftKings points in 31.2 minutes with all three players out of the lineup on Wednesday.
Chris Boucher season is upon us. Expectations for the big man were sky-high entering the year, but he struggled to find consistent minutes. However, he has racked up at least 33.7 minutes in four of his past five games, and Boucher is capable of doing a lot of damage with that much playing time. He’s averaged 1.07 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, and he’s scored at least 38.5 DraftKings points in back-to-back games. Boucher is another excellent option on DraftKings given his Bargain Rating of 88%.
Continue to fire up Bobby Portis with confidence on FanDuel. He’s scored at least 32.2 FanDuel points in six of his past seven games, which is not surprising given how much he’s playing. Portis has always been excellent on a per-minute basis, and he’s averaged 1.11 FanDuel points per minute this season. He remains underpriced at $6,300 on FanDuel, resulting in a Bargain Rating of 87%.
It didn’t take Bam Adebayo long to get back in the swing of things. He played 32.5 minutes in his last outing, and he racked up 60.2 FanDuel points. That performance was a bit fluky – he had five steals and three blocks – but the fact that his minutes are really being limited bodes well for his fantasy prospects moving forward. Using him at power forward on FanDuel is definitely a reasonable strategy.
Nikola Vucevic hasn’t gotten the same attention as DeRozan for the shorthanded Bulls, and that’s a mistake. He hasn’t seen quite as large of a usage bump, but he’s still seen a noticeable boost in production. He’s scored at least 47.0 DraftKings points in three of his past four games, yet his price has actually decreased on DraftKings over that time frame. Overall, he’s increased his production to 1.34 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, so he’s underpriced vs. the Bucks.
Mo Bamba has been slumping for the Magic, but he busted out in a big way in his last game. He finished with 49.0 DraftKings points over 29.9 minutes, and he drilled seven 3-pointers. I wouldn’t expect a repeat performance, but he still stands out as underpriced across the industry. He’s averaged 1.06 DraftKings points per minute this season, and he could play upwards of 30 minutes vs. the Lakers.
Rudy Gobert is another potential stud option on this slate. His ceiling isn’t as high as some of the other stud centers, but he’s been a reliable producer virtually all season. He’s scored at least 47.0 DraftKings points in three straight games, and he should be able to hit that mark again vs. the Pistons.
Playing Nikola Jokic is almost always a good idea, and he could carry less ownership than usual on Friday. No one in fantasy can match his ceiling, evidenced by his monster performance in his last game. He finished with 49 points, 14 rebounds, and 10 assists, resulting in 87.8 FanDuel points. His $11,900 salary on FanDuel also comes with a Bargain Rating of 92%.