3 Fantasy Basketball Players to Avoid on 12/6/18

The possibility of reduced minutes due to injury and blowout risk makes C.J. McCollum a scary play on Thursday. Who else should you fade in NBA DFS?

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?

C.J. McCollum, SG, Portland Trail Blazers

FanDuel Price: $7,400

C.J. McCollum picked up an ankle injury during his last game and is considered questionable to play on Thursday as the Portland Trail Blazers take on the Phoenix Suns. Even if he is able to give it a go, the shooting guard is a dangerous play as he could face limited minutes -- not only because of the injury but also due to the blowout potential of the game. Portland is a 13.5-point favorite over the Devin Booker-less Suns.

The matchup isn’t right for McCollum to thrive, either, as the Suns and Mikal Bridges have been able to slow down opposing shooting guards. On the season, Bridges limits those he is defending to a shooting percentage 1.2 percentage points less than expected on two-pointers. Phoenix is also giving up just 0.80 FanDuel points per minute to shooting guards, the fourth-lowest rate in the league.

Add in McCollum struggling to produce in DFS -- five games with fewer than 30 FanDuel points across his last seven contests -- and the best play on Thursday is to leave McCollum and his risk to others.

Jae Crowder, SF, Utah Jazz

FanDuel Price: $5,500

Shuffling back and forth between the starting lineup and the bench, Jae Crowder has struggled to find a rhythm lately. In three of his last five games, the forward has played less than 24 minutes per game. In those contests, he has struggled offensively, going 6-for-15 from the floor (40.0%) for just 6.7 points per game. Crowder collected an average of 15.4 FanDuel points per night in those games.

Even if he starts and sees extra minutes against the Houston Rockets on Thursday, Crowder will be hard to trust in DFS as Houston poses a difficult matchup.

The Rockets have been playing much better defense as of late, limiting their last three opponents to no more than 105 points. For the year, opposing small forwards have had a hard time being useful in DFS against Houston as the Rockets are holding them to 0.78 FanDuel points per minute, the fourth-lowest mark in the NBA.

Noah Vonleh, PF, New York Knicks

FanDuel Price: $5,000

Just three games ago, Noah Vonleh cost $6,700. However, with 10 games of 23.9 or fewer FanDuel points over his last 13 contests, Vonleh’s salary has been reduced to $5,000. Despite the more moderate price tag, the New York Knicks' forward is not one we should be looking to play, even on a short three-game slate.

Outside of three monster games of 40-plus FanDuel points, Vonleh has been quite pedestrian, averaging 19.5 FanDuel points since November 10. One of the issues has been his lack of rebounding as he has posted single-digit boards in each of his last five games. Vonleh is also averaging just 8.6 real-world points per game during the last week-plus.

In addition to all that, on Thursday, he draws a tough assignment against the Boston Celtics.

The Celtics own the second-best defensive rating (103.1) and allow just 104.1 points per game this season. That should leave the Knicks struggling for points on Thursday as they carry a lowly 102.0-point implied total. Opposing power forwards have had a hard time in Boston, too, as they have averaged the second-lowest FanDuel points per minute in the league (0.83) in the split.

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.