NBA March 18th Starting Five

The NBA season in full swing and we have another great slate tonight! 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!
1. Price
2. Opponent DvP
3. Recent Minutes/Rotation Time
4. Usage Rate
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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PG: Malcolm Brogdon ($7,700)

This is definitely more of a GPP play given Brogdon recently returned from injury. In his first game back he got a whopping 35 minutes of action and last game in a blowout only 27 minutes. I think that will run people away from him but there a lot of things to love about Brogdon today. First of all the matchup against the Rockets is a massive pace up spot for the Rockets who are dead last in defensive efficiency. Secondly his last two games against HOU have been 50+ DK point outings. Now I get that was without Haliburton, but that should take some attention off of him and the matchup is still prime. Houston has had the 6th worst PG DvP over the last two weeks but a top 10 SG and SF DvP which makes me think they will need to lean on Brogdon a lot more here. Can't forget to mention Indiana has the highest implied team total on the slate. All in all, as long as the game stays close and Brogdon can get his usual 35 minutes then he can easily have a big game here. He checks all of the boxes tonight.
High: Dejounte Murray ($10,600)
Mid: Kevin Porter Jr. ($6,400)
Low: Kris Dunn ($3,000)

SG: Nickiel Alexander-Walker ($3,100)

There are a lot of solid SG options don't get me wrong. However, NAW is in a prime spot here with Donovan, Bojan and potentially Trent Forrest all out. I think this becomes a sketchy play if Forrest plays, but if he is out then full steam ahead with NAW here. He played 22 minutes last game which resulted in 26 DK points. That is a really solid FPPM output and that was with Donovan playing. He might have to see 30 minutes tonight at the guard spot if Forrest is once again out. The usage rate should jump and he is dirt cheap. He just allows you to do so much with the rest of your roster. Again, monitor the availability of Forrest before rolling out NAW because that could put a damper on his minutes cap in a big way.
High: Devin Booker ($9,100) or CJ McCollum ($9,300)
Mid: Jordan Clarkson ($5,800)
Low: Josh Richardson ($4,200)

SF: Kevin Durant ($10,500)

Kevin Durant gets to play against a borderline G League team, is priced down big time, will have Seth Curry returning to space things out a bit for him and Irving is out. I don't care if he is slumping this is the perfect time to target Durant. He is still going to see somewhere in the 30-40% usage rate range and play big minutes. Brooklyn just isn't playing well right now at home. They haven't won a game by double digits at home in over a month so I wouldn't put a blowout in the range of possibilities. Durant should own this spot; it is just that simple. There might be a few other spend options to roll with but I still trust Durant to do his thing tonight.
High: Jayson Tatum ($9,500)
Mid: Buddy Hield ($7,400) or Marcus Morris ($6,100)
Low: Corey Kispert ($3,400)

PF: Pascal Siakam ($9,500)

Siakam is just playing great ball right now with 50+ DK points in 4 straight games with one of those being against the team he plays tonight. The Lakers are truly terrible on the defensive end, especially against PFs. They have had the worst PF DvP over the last two weeks. I think the price is a touch low for how he has been playing and his usage so I am more than comfortable going back to him here. There are enough cheap options tonight that you can afford Siakam and maybe 2 studs. He just seems like such a safe play tonight that also has a high upside for the price.
High: DeMar DeRozan ($9,000)
Mid: Keldon Johnson ($6,600)
Low: Terry Taylor ($3,200)

C: Goga Bitadze ($3,400)

Once again if Goga is out then this is irrelevant, but if he is active then he is a lock. He has scored 28+ DK points in the last 3 games he has been active. Isaiah Jackson is out which leaves IND with only Jalen Smith and Terry Taylor as their only bigs. If Goga plays he is almost a lock for 30 minutes and in those 3 games over 28 DK points his max minutes was 24 minutes. I think there is a 10x+ floor here if he plays which is something I am not going to pass up. If he is out then lock in Terry Taylor and consider Claxton as a direct replacement at the same price.
High: Joel Embiid ($10,800)
Mid: Jaren Jackson Jr. ($6,600)
Low: Precious Achiuwa ($4,400) or Nicolas Claxton ($3,400)
Thanks for reading, best of luck, and I hope you enjoy the holidays!
Heating Up DFS