The NBA season has been here, but today it is now December which means it's CHRISTMAS TIME! We have such an exciting season up ahead and plenty of opportunities to win some money! There are four key things I look for in a player to have the highest probability of being optimal!
These four statistics paired together are the best suitors to find a gem. Almost everyone I mention below hits on atleast 2 of these if not all of them! Hopefully this will help you be more successful while building lineups and give you a higher chance of winning the big bucks!
I would also like to note that I write these articles early in the day. It is always beneficial to check @FantasyLabsNBA for lineup changes. Those changes could have a direct effect on some of my "favorite plays" in the sense that if a cheap guy that was one of my favorites doesn't start, then they might no longer be a favorite play or even a play at all. Check out my Twitter @HeatingUpDFS for any updates on favorite play changes!
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Welp it's gonna be Jalen Brunson week with Doncic out for the next few games! Brunson has been immense in his starts for Doncic this season, averaging nearly 40 DK points/game and getting a massive usage boost. He will be used as their primary ball handler, which means we could see an increase in assist numbers. Pair that with his uptick in shots and this being a massive pace up spot and you are looking at a recipe for a ceiling game. Charlotte is missing a ton of players still, so at this point you would imagine that most of the active guys are gassed from playing 40+ minutes every night. Everything points to Dallas putting up big numbers tonight and a lot of that could be due to Brunson.
High: Trae Young ($10,300) or Chris Paul ($8,300)
Mid: Caris LeVert ($6,500)
Low: Terence Mann ($4,400) or Gabe Vincent ($4,200)
SG: Luke Kennard ($4,900)
Paul George is expected to miss tonight's game which opens up a ton for some guys to get a minutes and usage bump, including Kennard. He is fairly underpriced for the role he should be asked to play tonight given he got 36 minutes, 21% usage and 38 DK points last game in his absense. The matchup is the only thing that is keeping me from locking him in since PHX actually has some solid wing defenders that could give Kennard some issues. I don't think that should really matter given they have had a middle of the pack DvP against SG/SF's over the last two weeks and Kennard should get a ton of volume here tonight.
High: Fred VanVleet ($9,000)
Mid: Terry Rozier ($7,200)
Low: Eric Gordon ($5,300) or Armani Brooks ($4,800)
SF: Khris Middleton ($7,400)
Not only is it Brunson week, but it is Khris Middleton revenge day! Ever since the Celtics cut him years ago and he has evolved into the player he is today, he has a thing for letting Boston know how good he is and what they are missing. First of all he has had back to back 40+ DK point games, so he is getting hot right now. Also, over the last 7 meetings against BOS, he has scored 38+ DK points in 6 of those contests with a ceiling of 58 DK points. Boston is middle of the pack against SF defensively, so I think he can still be effective regardless and he should see a healthy amount of Jaylen Brown who is coming back from injury and might not be as worried about his defensive assignment. That should open things up for Middleton to be successful here. Given how chalky this slate might get, Middleton might be that GPP piece that can make your lineups stand out/unique compared to the field. Oh and the Celtics are without one of their best wing defenders Josh Richardson which makes things even better for Middleton.
High: Jayson Tatum ($9,400)
Mid: Kevin Huerter ($5,600)
Low: Marcus Morris ($4,600) or Brandon Boston Jr. ($3,000)
PF: Kristaps Porzingis ($8,000)
There is no better place to roll out Kristaps then in a matchup against CHA and without Doncic. He killed some people's lineups yesterday, but that was in a whole different matchup. Charlotte is truly terrible against bigs, holding the 3rd worst PF and C DvP's in the league over the last few weeks. Kristaps without Doncic has a 50+ DK point ceiling and quite a solid floor (outside of yesterday which I consider an outlier). This is just one of those spots where you eat the chalk and get different elsewhere. He checks every box you want for tonight.
High: Pascal Siakam ($8,500)
Mid: Evan Mobley ($7,100)
Low: Cameron Johnson ($4,600), Jae Crowder ($4,500) or Marvin Bagley ($3,800)
C: Nikola Jokic ($12,000)
Jokic has had 70+ DK points in 2 of the last 3 games and now gets to go against the team with the worst C DvP in the league over the last two weeks. Washington is just not good at defending the position and Jokic is the best in the league. It is a pace up spot for Denver and they might be without Barton again. If he sits out then Jokic is my favorite pay up play on the slate and I would likely lock him in. Even with the expensive price, I think he can well over hit value.
High: Giannis Antetokounmpo ($11,600) or Jarrett Allen ($8,600)
Mid: Myles Turner ($6,300)
Low: JaVale McGee ($4,000)** or Chris Boucher ($4,300)
Thanks for reading, best of luck, and I hope you enjoy the holidays!