3 Fantasy Basketball Players to Avoid on 11/16/18

Josh Richardson has been in a slump and a matchup with the Pacers won't help him get right. Who else is better left off your DFS lineups on Friday?

In daily fantasy basketball, finding players you want to roster is a lot easier than finding players to avoid.

You can find a ton of great information and research on guys you might want to include in your DFS NBA lineups, but what about guys you may want to lessen your exposure to, or even fade altogether?

Avoiding players whose matchups or situations aren't as great as they seem can often be just as important as finding the best targets. After all, it takes only one player to sink a lineup. Searching for the landmines could mean the difference between winning and losing your contests. Which players should we avoid tonight?

Josh Richardson, SF, Miami Heat

FanDuel Price: $7,200

Josh Richardson is in the midst of a breakout season. He is averaging over 20 points per game as the focal point of the Miami Heat offense. Over his last two games, though, Richardson has seen his game regress. The small forward has averaged 16.0 points 3.0 rebounds, and 2.5 assists in 36.4 minutes. His usage rate was 24.9% before Monday but has been just 18.4% this week. As expected, his fantasy production has suffered, posting two of his worst games of the season (25.5 and 21.2 FanDuel points). Facing a plodding Indiana Pacers squad on Friday won’t do Richardson any favors as he tries to bust out of his mini-slump.

The Pacers run at the third-slowest pace in the league this season, holding opponents to 103.0 points and 83.1 field goal attempts per game. The Heat own an implied point total of just 103.5 on Friday, the second-lowest on the eight-game slate. Making matters worse, small forwards have struggled against Indiana, averaging 0.78 FanDuel points per minute, the lowest rate in the NBA.

Buddy Hield, SG, Sacramento Kings

FanDuel Price: $6,600

Bogdan Bogdanovic is back for the Sacramento Kings and Buddy Hield is taking the biggest hit with his return. Hield remains in the starting lineup, but after averaging 31.9 minutes per game to start the season, he has played just 25.9 his last two games. The reduced minutes have hurt Hield’s rhythm from the floor, too, as he has made just 8-of-30 shots (26.7%). He was shooting over 50% from the floor and 45% from three his first 12 games. The guard has averaged just 22.6 FanDuel points in the two contests. Unfortunately, Friday’s game against the Memphis Grizzlies is one of the toughest of the night, likely continuing Hield’s struggles.

The Grizzlies run at the slowest pace in the league and carry the fourth-best defensive rating. Opponents score a league-low 101.6 points per game, which is why the Kings own a 103.25 implied total, worst among the 16 teams in action on Friday. Shooting guards have been held in check, too, producing 0.76 FanDuel points per minute, the third-worst rate in the league this season.

Jonad Valanciunas, C, Toronto Raptors

FanDuel Price: $5,500

Jonas Valanciunas has been playing limited minutes the entire season, eclipsing the 24-minute mark just one time. That just happened to be his last time out as Serge Ibaka did not play with an injury. Even with the extended run, the Toronto Raptors' big man posted just 14 points and 6 rebounds for 21.2 FanDuel points. That was his second consecutive sub-22 FanDuel points performance. He can chalk up the disappointing game to having to face Andre Drummond and the Detroit Pistons. Even if he gets another long run of playing time on Friday, which isn’t likely with Ibaka returning, Valanciunas is in for a tough time against the Boston Celtics.

Boston owns the best defensive rating in the NBA (101.0) and have allowed the second-fewest points. The Eastern Conference showdown with the Raps is expected to be a grind-it-out affair as it holds the second lowest over/under (214.0) of the eight Friday games. Even if it isn’t a slow-paced battle, Valanciunas will have a tough time in DFS as the Celtics allow the second-lowest amount of FanDuel points per minute (1.0) to centers this season.

Dale Redman is not a FanDuel employee. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.