FanDuel NBA: Thursday Value Plays

INJURIES

MIL Giannis Antetokounmpo (knee) - QUESTIONABLE

Giannis has had several days to rest and was a full participant in practice Tuesday. There's no word on his status yet today, but it would be a bit of a surprise if he suits up on this back-to-back. We'll discuss some possible pivots later in the article, but Bobby Portis ($5,000) and Brook Lopez($4,800) will benefit from a Giannis absence.

ATL Trae Young (calf) - QUESTIONABLE

ATL John Collins (ankle) - OUT

ATL Danilo Gallinari (foot) - QUESTIONABLE

ATL De'Andre Hunter (knee) - OUT

The Hawks lineup is also worth monitoring heading into lineup lock. We'll also identify Atlanta targets later in the article, but Brandon Goodwin ($3,700) should be considered a prime budget option if Trae Young stays out.

GSW Kelly Oubre (wrist) - OUT

Kent Bazemore ($5,000) will start in Oubre's place, and considering Andrew Wiggins ($7,100) only played 26 minutes in Wednesday's blowout, and he should see a full load in the back-to-back.

CLE Collin Sexton (groin) - OUT

Isaac Okoro ($3,900) should start again for Sexton, and he won't have to do much to beat value at this salary point. It's worth running back the remainder of the presumptive starting five in this matchup as well.

LAL Markieff Morris (ankle) - QUESTIONABLE

Amidst a sea of probable tags, it appears Morris is the only guy whose status is in doubt on the Lakers' injury report. The output should flow to Talen Horton-Tucker ($6,100) if Morris can't make it.

SAC Richaun Holmes (hamstring) - OUT

Run with Hassan Whiteside ($5,000) and Harrison Barnes ($5,800) in Holmes' absence.

ELITE PLAYERS

Because of the short slate, we will extend the elite category down into the 8k range.

Stephen Curry ($10,500) sits alone in the 10k range at the top of the slate. He's on a back-to-back, but it's a potentially soft matchup against the Cavaliers. He scored 42 points in only 29 minutes during last night's blowout of the Thunder, so you could say he'd be much fresher than one would expect after that kind of a stat line. De'Aaron Fox ($9,700), Jayson Tatum ($9,400) and Jaylen Brown ($8,100) are worth considering on tonight's slate, but I favor Tatum and Brown a lot more on a Boston lineup that I'll be hitting hard against the Lakers. Clint Capela ($9,000) will continue to be a ringer and is probably the most steady elite of the bunch, and he'll be extremely popular in the valuable center position. Conversely, I'm not as high on Devin Booker ($9,000), who has struggled with his shot of late, and I would only take Jrue Holiday ($8,400) at this price if Giannis is a confirmed scratch.

EXPECTED CHALK

Khris Middleton, MIL ($7,800) @ ATL

We can get a great all-around line even if Giannis returns, but his stock obviously rises with Antetokounmpo off the floor. Since their All-Star's absence, Middleton's averaged 21.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, 5.4 assists and 1.2 steals over five games played.

Deandre Ayton, PHO ($7,400) vs. SAC

Ayton has double-doubled in five of his last six games, and he'll have the youth advantage over Hassan Whiteside tonight. Whiteside is an inch taller and a bigger body inside, but you can bet that Ayton will have more opportunities off the glass than Whiteside will have against the Suns, who post the league's fourth-best field-goal percentage.

Bogdan Bogdanovic, ATL ($7,200) vs. MIL

One could argue against Bogdanovic's salary, but not in Atlanta's current game script. He put up 32 points against the Hornets and followed it up with 23 against the Raptors on Tuesday night. If Young remains out, Bogdan is definitely worth a second look.

Kemba Walker, BOS ($6,800) @ LAL

I'm a big fan of the Boston starters tonight, and although Walker is no longer the first number to call in this offense, he's put together one of his best three-game runs of the season since returning from injury. Over a three-game span, Walker's averaged 17.3 points, 7.3 assists and 6.7 rebounds. His three-point shot could still use some work, but he has a great shot at improving against the Lakers.

Also consider: Chris Paul, PHO ($8,000) vs. SAC, Andre Drummond, LAL ($6,800) vs. BOS

VALUE PLAYS

As usual, some of our best values sit with the injury section, but here are some additional values worth mentioning tonight.

Kevin Love, CLE ($6,300) vs. GS

We love Love's PF designation, and although Kevon Looney may provide the interior some trouble, Love can get going while the Warriors are preoccupied with Jarrett Allen. Draymond Green($7,100) could end up drawing Love to guard, but he'll be at a two-inch disadvantage. Although they are limiting Love's minutes, he saw no major decrease on the team's last back-to-back, so he should be a safe call at this salary point.

Robert Williams, BOS ($5,800) @ LAL

Williams will be a lower-rostered big man due to the surprising wealth of options on this slim slate. His appealing salary makes him a favorite to beat a 5x multiplier, and with Montrezl Harrellstruggling under the basket for the Lakers, he could find himself in a great spot tonight.

Tyrese Haliburton, SAC ($5,400) @ PHO

It doesn't matter whether the rookie is coming from the bench or the starting five – he always seems to find a solid stat line. His six steals against the Wizards saved his stat line on Wednesday, and we'd need a better shooting night from him tonight against the Suns. He only logged 29 minutes, so he'll be fresh on the back-to-back.

Cameron Johnson, PHO ($4,000) vs. SAC

We often don't call Johnson's name, but he could get an extended run in a game with blowout potential. He's been able to crush 5x value in three of his last five games thanks to a low salary that's very easy to fit into your lineup. His SF designation is an excellent quality tonight, as it's one of the leanest positions on the slate tonight.


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