Monday's eight-game slate should be a lot of fun, as we've got a lot of value out there due to rest days and injuries.
ATL (-7.5) @ DET O/U: 227.5
PHI (-6.5) vs. CHI O/U: 229
MIA (-15) vs. HOU O/U: 225.5
MIN (-15.5) vs. POR O/U: 237.5 DAL (-1) vs. UTA O/U: 216.5 SAS (-2) vs. LAL O/U: 232 DEN (-9) vs. GSW O/U: 223.5 SAC (-3.5) vs. NYK O/U: 229.5 There are long-shot calls at every position, but I think the guard position is where you should spend up on this slate. The punts in the forward category have more upside overall, and as you'll see, we've got a lot of pivots to look at, especially with Golden State. The only game I'm not high on is UTA/DAL. INJURIES CHI Nikola Vucevic (hamstring) - QUESTIONABLE If the hamstring holds out Vucevic, Tristan Thompson ($3,600) would be in line for increased usage and a possible start. HOU Dennis Schroder (ankle) - QUESTIONABLE If Schroder misses a second consecutive game, Garrison Mathews ($3,700) would be a sensible pivot for him. MIA Kyle Lowry (personal) - OUT MIA Victor Oladipo (knee) - QUESTIONABLE MIA Caleb Martin (Achilles) - QUESTIONABLE We may finally see Oladipo on the floor Monday, but it's highly unlikely that he'll carry a full load. For now, It's best to keep rolling with Tyler Herro ($7,100) and Gabe Vincent ($4,900) in Lowry's absence. POR Justise Winslow (Achilles) - OUT With Josh Hart ($6,000) returning to action, CJ Elleby ($3,700) is the low-cost pivot to consider, although I like Hart in the scenario as well. MIN Anthony Edwards (knee) - DOUBTFUL MIN Patrick Beverley (ankle) - QUESTIONABLE MIN Taurean Prince (back) - QUESTIONABLE Edwards leaves a big hole in the offense, and although several starters will need to step, Jaden McDaniels ($4,500) appears to be the primary beneficiary. DAL Jalen Brunson (foot) - QUESTIONABLE Brunson may very well be ready to go, but Spencer Dinwiddie ($5,800) would likely step in to start if he can't make it. GSW Stephen Curry (rest) - OUT GSW Andrew Wiggins (rest) - OUT GSW Klay Thompson (rest) - OUT Coach Steve Kerr announced that the trio would sit Monday. Apparently, Kerr thinks resting his guys might help get them back on track and out of their noticeable slump. It definitely provides a lot of cheap value for DFS, however. Jordan Poole ($4,700) is my favorite target, but Otto Porter($4,400) and Jonathan Kuminga ($4,600) should also play a significant role. I'd give an extra look at this starting five before tip-off. SAS Dejounte Murray, (calf) - QUESTIONABLE SAS Devin Vassell (groin) - QUESTIONABLE Murray is the most significant wait-and-see candidate on the slate. With so many other options, people will move away from Murray, and he will carry a low roster rate if he ends up taking the floor. I like Tre Jones ($4,700) a lot if Murray can't make it. ELITE PLAYERS There's a lot to look at up top, starting with LeBron James ($10,200). He's coming off a 77 FP performance against the Warriors, and if it wasn't already obvious, the Lakers will need many nights like this from LeBron if they hope to make the playoffs. L.A.'s struggles are so part of the landscape that they even made a joke about it on Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update, but I would have to say it's too early to count them out if LeBron decides to keep playing like this. For DFS purposes, you have to ride him, especially now. Other notable players in the elite range include Julius Randle ($8,300), who is at an excellent salary against the Kings, and you have to like Joel Embiid ($10,900) against the Bulls, especially if Vucevic is out. Trae Young ($9,700) and James Harden ($10,400) emerge as the top point guards, and they will be popular due to many moving off Murray's game-time call. I also think Karl-Anthony Towns ($9,200) is in a very exploitable sport against Portland. It goes without saying thatNikola Jokic ($10,800) could erupt against the short-handed Warriors if he plays a full complement of minutes. EXPECTED CHALK AND CORE TARGETS Rudy Gobert, UTA ($8,000) @ DAL How can you not like the league's best defensive player against the Mavericks, who have seen their opposing rebound averages take a spike over the past two weeks. In this game, Jakob Poeltlshouldn't be too much of a problem for Gobert, who could pad his totals with a substantial double-digit rebound performance. D'Angelo Russell, MIN ($7,600) vs. POR With Edwards out, it's a great night to target Russell, who sees a huge bump whenever the young playmaker is off the floor. Over the past two weeks, Russell's floor has settled comfortably into the 40 FP range, making this salary point perfect for us, especially if we can get some upside in the injury spot against a weak opponent. GOLDEN STATE VALUE We need to highlight some additional plays here, some of which will be incredibly chalky (Poole, Porter), but there is much more to find amid the elite absences. Moses Moody ($3,500) andDamion Lee ($4,100) are two big bench targets to take a look at, and Nemanja Bjelica ($3,900)should also step up. Also consider: Jimmy Butler, MIA ($8,000) vs. HOU VALUE PLAYS Jordan Clarkson, UTA ($4,900) @ DAL Clarkson may not jump off the page, but he had a good game against Dallas (28 FP) earlier in the season, and he'll definitely be lower in popularity next to more visible counterparts like Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley. De'Andre Hunter, ATL ($4,400) @ DET Hunter led all scorers in Atlanta's last game, and he's just too talented to leave alone. I've often said that he's the best all-around athlete on the roster, and when he gets optimal minutes, he takes advantage. With Kevin Huerter hurting, Hunter should see close to 30 minutes and get a lot done in the process. Keon Johnson, POR ($3,500) @ MIN Granted, Johnson let us down when we first endorsed him, but he rallied with 29 FP in his last game. Even with Josh Hart returning, the Trail Blazers will see what they have with Johnson as they continue to work on a solution to replace CJ McCollum. Additionally, Trendon Watford ($3,700)could emerge as Portland's best value in place of Jusuf Nurkic. Finally, it's essential to give starting lineups a look for Portland, the aforementioned Warriors, and the Spurs as games tip off. These rosters are going to be filled with value spots beyond what we've already mentioned, and the plentiful upside should allow fielding three or possibly four elite targets. It's important to not get too cute with deep discounts - always have a reason to spend down (usually to find room for another elite).