The NBA Breakdown offers data-driven analysis for each day’s slate using the FantasyLabs Tools and metrics to highlight notable players.
Sunday’s main slate differs by site. DraftKings features a four-game slate starting at 5 p.m. ET, while FanDuel features a three-game slate starting at 6 p.m. ET.
Chris Paul is coming off two straight games in which he’s posted a negative Plus/Minus, but he has shown improvement over the past month. He’s increased his fantasy output to 1.14 FanDuel points per minute over that time frame, and he had posted a positive Plus/Minus in six straight games prior to those two contests.
He’s in an excellent spot today vs. the New Orleans Pelicans. They currently rank fourth in pace and 24th in defensive efficiency, which is a juicy combination for fantasy purposes. The Thunder are implied for 112.75 points, which represents a significant increase compared to their season average (107.5). Paul also owns an Opponent Plus/Minus of +2.51 on FanDuel, so he has an excellent individual matchup as well.
Patty Mills looks like a nice potential source of savings on FanDuel. He’s priced at just $3,800, resulting in a position-high Bargain Rating of 77%. He’s in a solid spot today vs. the Detroit Pistons, resulting in an Opponent Plus/Minus of +1.99. He doesn’t offer a ton of upside — he hasn’t scored more than 29.2 FanDuel points in the past month — but he doesn’t need a ton of upside to pay off his current price tag.
Fred VanVleet has a brutal matchup today vs. the Jazz. They currently rank fifth in defensive efficiency, and VanVleet owns an Opponent Plus/Minus of -1.07 on FanDuel. That said, it’s hard to ignore VanVleet given his sheer volume of playing time recently. He’s logged at least 37.8 minutes in three of his past four games, and he’s eclipsed 41 minutes in two of those contests. He scored 52.0 FanDuel points in his last game vs. the Magic, so VanVleet is capable of succeeding in poor matchups.
Mike Conley has struggled in his first year with the Jazz. He’s averaging 13.9 points and 4.6 assists per game, both of which are his lowest marks in nearly a decade. That’s caused his price tag to decrease by $1,100 over the past month on DraftKings, which makes him an interesting buy-low candidate. Historically, players with comparable monthly salary changes and minute projections have averaged a Plus/Minus of +2.70 (per the Trends tool).
The game between the Wizards and Clippers is available only on the FanDuel main slate, but that game is definitely worth targeting if you can. That game owns a total of 238.5 points, which is the top mark on the slate by nearly 10 points.
Bradley Beal stands out for the Wizards. He’s put together a phenomenal season, averaging career-highs in both points and assists per game. Add it all up, and he’s averaged 1.22 FanDuel points per minute. No one at the position is projected for more than his 38.7 minutes in our NBA Models, which is an appealing combination. He also leads the position with 13 Pro Trends on FanDuel.
Josh Hart returned to the Pelicans rotation recently, and he’s coming off 30.7 minutes in his last game. He struggled in that contest, scoring just 17.8 FanDuel points while shooting 2-of-8 from the field, but the amount of playing time is encouraging. Hart has averaged 0.92 FanDuel points per minute this season, so better scoring days are on the horizon.
DeMar DeRozan has been a nice source of value recently, posting an average Plus/Minus of +4.67 over his past 10 games on DraftKings. That said, his salary has still decreased by $800 over his past six games, and his current $7,300 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 78%. DeRozan has historically thrived with a comparable price tag as a member of the Spurs, averaging a Plus/Minus of +4.40.
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander got off to a great start this season, but he’s crashed back to reality recently. That said, he’s still playing a ton of minutes for the Thunder — he leads the team with an average of 34.4 minutes per game — so there are reasons to expect a bounceback moving forward. His price has decreased by $1,100 over the past month on FanDuel, so he’ll provide excellent value when that happens.
Today’s slate is lacking in terms of star power, particularly on DraftKings since the Clippers are not included. With that in mind, Brandon Ingram has some appeal at $9,200. It’s a massive price tag for Ingram — his previous season-high was $8,400 — but there aren’t a ton of other places to invest your salary.
There’s no denying that Ingram has been fantastic this season. He’s averaged 1.33 DraftKings points per minute, which is the second-highest mark on the slate regardless of position. It’s not a particularly appealing matchup given his Opponent Plus/Minus of +0.44, but there are very few players on this slate who can match his upside. He’s posted a positive Plus/Minus in six straight games since returning from injury, so he has a pretty solid floor as well.
Rudy Gay stands out as an elite option on FanDuel. He’s been a strong producer when on the court this season, averaging 0.97 FanDuel points per minute, and he’s been on the court more than usual recently. He’s played at least 27.4 minutes in each of his past two games, and he’s currently projected for 30.5 minutes in our NBA Models. His Bargain Rating of 79% is tied for the top mark at the position.
Alec Burks has SF eligibility on FanDuel and PG/SG eligibility on DraftKings, but he’s an interesting option regardless of where you play him. He’s had some big games for the Warriors recently, scoring at least 42.6 FanDuel points in three of his past six games, which makes him an appealing target for guaranteed prize pools (GPPs) at his current salary. The Warriors are begging for competent basketball players right now, and Burks is one of the fewer players on the squad who fits that description.
Evan Fournier got off to a slow start this season, but he’s picked things up since the injury to Nikola Vucevic. He’s averaged 1.00 DraftKings point per minute with Vucevic off the court this season, so there’s no reason he can’t continue to produce as long as he’s out of the lineup.
Pascal Siakam was expected to take on a larger role this season following the departure of Kawhi Leonard, but the injuries to Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka have given him one of the largest workloads in basketball. His average of 36.9 minutes per game ranks third in the league, and he’s logged at least 39.5 minutes in three of the past four games. He’s currently projected for 40.4 minutes vs. the Jazz, which is the top mark on the slate.
The Jazz represent a difficult matchup, but Siakam still leads all PFs with 12 Pro Trends. He’s a particularly strong target on DraftKings, where his $8,700 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 71%.
Nerlens Noel is an interesting value option at $4,900 on FanDuel. He doesn’t play a ton of minutes, but he’s generally very effective when he’s on the floor. He’s averaged 1.22 FanDuel points per minute this season, thanks in no small part to his ability to rack up steals and blocks. That will always give him extra appeal on FanDuel, where those stats are worth three fantasy points a piece.
Blake Griffin has been limited since returning from injury, but his playing time is slowly increasing. He’s played at least 30.7 minutes in four straight games, and that number figures to increase as he gets further removed from injury. He stands out as one of the best pure values on the slate on FanDuel given his Bargain Rating of 94%, and he’s averaged 1.00 FanDuel point per minute this season. He’s in a great spot vs. the Spurs, so he has the potential to be a GPP-winner if he sees a spike in minutes or efficiency.
JaMychal Green is a pretty cheap way to get some exposure to the Clippers and their slate-high implied team total. He’s averaged 0.84 FanDuel points per minute this season, and he’s scored at least 20.3 FanDuel points in four of his past five games.
Andre Drummond is the clear class of the center position today, but it’s hard to get too excited about him with Griffin back in the lineup. He’s averaged 1.41 FanDuel points per minute this season, but that number drops to just 1.30 while sharing the court with Griffin. With that in mind, it’s not surprising that Drummond has posted an average Plus/Minus of -4.11 over his past 10 games.
He’s in a difficult spot today vs. the Spurs. They’ve struggled defensively this season, but they’ve still been solid against opposing centers this season. Drummond owns an Opponent Plus/Minus of -0.73 on FanDuel, which makes him a risky option.
Mo Bamba is looking like a potential bust 16 games into his sophomore season, but he’s doing his best to repair his image. He’s posted a positive Plus/Minus in four straight games on FanDuel, including a 34.9-point performance vs. the Detroit Pistons. He’s increased his fantasy production to 1.07 FanDuel points per minute over the past month, and he’s in a great spot today vs. the Warriors. They’ve hemorrhaged points to opposing centers this season, giving Bamba an Opponent Plus/Minus of +3.64 on FanDuel. He also stands out as one of the best values at the position on FanDuel given his Bargain Rating of 79%.
Ivica Zubac is in arguably the best spot of the day vs. the Wizards. They struggle both defensively and on the glass, giving Zubac an Opponent Plus/Minus of +3.70 on FanDuel. He’s averaged 1.32 FanDuel points per minute over the past month, so he’s capable of doing some damage in limited playing time.
Pictured: Spurs SG DeMar DeRozan (10)
Photo Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports