The NBA Player Models are the lifeblood of our NBA product. They house our projections for each player, but that’s just the beginning of what you’ll find inside. You’ll also find our Trends tool and so much more.
Let’s dive into our models, going position-by-position, looking at guys with some of the highest Ceiling Projections, along with players who are standing out as values with our predictive Projected Plus/Minus metric.
Note: Projections and Leverages Scores/Ratings may change throughout the day after this article is posted. Consult the Player Models directly for any updates.
Top Ceiling: Trae Young vs. Miami Heat – $10,300 DraftKings, $9,900 FanDuel
Young hasn’t been playing up to his typically lofty standards over his past two games, averaging just 22.0 points, 10.5 assists, 6.0 rebounds, and 1.0 steals in that span. These two games have come after he sat out with a back injury last week, so it’s possible he’s dealing with some soreness.
In two games prior to that one-game absence, he put up 91 points and 25 assists. His ceiling remains one of the highest of any player in the NBA, and our model gives him a ceiling of nearly 75 on DraftKings and nearly 70 on FanDuel. He may not be a highly owned player tonight due to the recent step back, so if you’re looking for some differentiation in tournaments, Young could be your guy.
Top Value: Spencer Dinwiddie vs. Orlando Magic – $6,000 DraftKings, $7,100 FanDuel
Dinwiddie has been disappointing for most of the season, but he’s turned it around as of late. With Bradley Beal (protocols) out of action Tuesday, Dinwiddie went 22/10/3 with two steals.
Over his last six, Dinwiddie has averaged 18.3 points, 8.8 assists, 4.0 rebounds, and 1.0 steals, and he gets an excellent matchup with Orlando tonight. Dinwiddie is a fine play on FanDuel, but he’s an even better play on DraftKings at a $1,100 discount and a 94% Bargain Rating.
Top Ceiling: Donovan Mitchell vs. Cleveland Cavaliers – $9,400 DraftKings, $8,500 FanDuel
Mitchell has been one of the best players in the NBA this season, and he’s enjoying arguably the best season of his career, thanks to efficient shooting, scoring, and all-around production. He comes into this one on a two-game streak of scoring at least 31 points.
This is a pace-down spot for Utah, but Mitchell gets a quality Opponent Plus/Minus against Cleveland. He’s an excellent play on any slate, but he’s particularly valuable on FanDuel tonight at an absurdly low price of $8,500, good for a 95% Bargain Rating on that site.
Top Value: Joshua Primo vs. Houston Rockets – $4,000 DraftKings, $3,800 FanDuel
San Antonio has shuffled its lineup in recent days, and the No. 12 pick has logged three straight starts. In that span, he’s averaged 10.7 points, 2.7 assists, 1.7 rebounds, 1.7 triples, and 1.7 stocks.
Primo gets an excellent Opponent Plus/Minus, and the Spurs/Rockets game has a 232.5 over/under, the highest on the slate. At such a low price, he should be on your radar as an upside bargain play.
Top Ceiling: LeBron James at Sacramento Kings – $11,700 DraftKings, $11,300 FanDuel
The King has turned back the clock this season, and he currently leads the NBA in 30-point games. He’s scored at least 30 in 10 of his last 11 with three double-doubles and a triple-double in that span.
Tonight’s matchup between the Lakers and Kings should be a high-scoring affair, with the over/under set at 230.5. The Lakers are third in pace, and the Kings are ninth, and Sacramento is 26th in defensive rating. LeBron went at least 30/5/5 in both of his two prior games against Sacramento this season.
Top Value: Corey Kispert vs. Orlando Magic – $3,500 DraftKings, $3,500 FanDuel
With Bradley Beal in health and safety protocols for the second time, Kispert started Tuesday against the Thunder and went 12/5/3 with a block. He figures to draw another start tonight against the Magic.
In five starts this season, Kispert has averaged 12.8 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.0 triples, and 1.8 assists. Those numbers won’t knock your socks off, but at just $3,500, he could return some major value and allow you to pay up for some notable studs. The rookie gets positive marks in Pace Differential and Opponent Plus/Minus.
Top Ceiling: Domantas Sabonis vs. Boston Celtics – $10,000 DraftKings, $10,300 FanDuel
Sabonis’ price is still rather affordable considering just how gaudy his stat lines have been as of late. He’s recorded two triple-doubles in his last three games, including a monster effort in his last game out.
Indiana will face Boston in a rematch of Monday’s showdown, and in that game, Sabonis dominated the Celtics with 11 points, 23 rebounds, and 10 assists. This is a small pace-down spot for Indiana, but Sabonis gets a very strong Opponent Plus/Minus.
Top Value: Onyeka Okongwu vs. Miami Heat – $3,900 DraftKings, $3,900 FanDuel
Okongwu is set to draw another start tonight, with Clint Capela (ankle) doubtful to take the court. Okongwu hasn’t gotten much run this season, but he’s providing 0.98 fantasy points per minute, and our model has him projected at 26 minutes tonight.
In two games in which he’s logged over 26 minutes, Okongwu averaged 11.0 points, 9.0 boards, 2.5 dimes, and 2.0 stocks. For a guy at this salary, he can easily return 6x value and should be a very chalky option. I’m eating the chalk here and getting plenty of exposure to Atlanta’s young center.
Note: Okongwu is eligible at PF and C on DraftKings and C on FanDuel
Top Ceiling: Joel Embiid vs. Charlotte Hornets – $11,200 DraftKings, $10,900 FanDuel
While Memphis may be the hottest team in the NBA right now, Philly isn’t too far behind, and it’s thanks to the monster efforts of Joel Embiid. He’s scored at least 30 points in seven straight, and Philly has won all of them.
In that span, Embiid has averaged a ridiculous 32.9 points, 10.1 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 2.4 stocks, and 1.1 triples. In two prior meetings with Charlotte, he averaged 37.5 points, 11.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 1.0 steals, including a season-high 43 on Dec. 6.
The matchup is juicy for opposing centers, and the hottest center in the Association should have no problem posting some monster numbers on tonight’s slate. There’s a reason he’s priced so highly, but he’s worth every cent.
Top Value: Jakob Poeltl vs. Houston Rockets – $6,300 DraftKings, $6,100 FanDuel
Poeltl has been an unheralded producer this season, averaging 13.4 points, 10.8 rebounds, 2.9 assists, and 2.0 stocks over his last eight games, with five double-doubles to his credit in that span.
The Rockets are second in pace and dead last in defensive rating, and tonight’s Spurs/Rockets matchup has a 232.5 over/under, which is the highest on the slate. Poeltl gets huge boosts in Opponent Plus/Minus and Pace Differential and makes a fine value if you choose to pivot from the chalky Embiid.