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NBA Daily Fantasy Helper: Wednesday 4/17/19

James Harden stands out in what projects to be one of the night's closer matchups. Is there enough value available to make him affordable?

If you're new to daily fantasy basketball -- maybe you started your DFS journey during the MLB or NFL seasons, or maybe basketball is your sport and this will be your first year giving it a shot -- you're in for a treat. The NBA scene changes hugely on a week-to-week, day-to-day, and -- depending on injury news -- even a minute-to-minute basis, making every slate a unique one that requires an ever-changing approach.

With so much changing so quickly, we're here with plenty of tools to help you out. We have daily projections, a matchup heat map, a lineup optimizer, and a ton of other great resources to help give you an edge.

We'll also be coming at you with this primer every day, breaking down a few of the day's top plays at each price point.

Let's take a look at who you should target on today's main slate.

Best of the Best

James Harden ($12,600): As has been the case often in the first round, we've got another slate loaded with blowout risk tonight. Not all blowout risk is created the same, though. The Milwaukee Bucks are massive 15-point favorites, meaning paying up for Giannis Antetokounmpo is an incredibly risky proposition, especially compared to paying up for Harden when the Houston Rockets are favored by a much more tame 7 points. Both teams blew out their respective opponents in Game 1, and Giannis saw only 23.5 minutes in his win, compared to 32.7 for Harden. Giannis is the more efficient fantasy producer, having led the NBA with 1.72 FanDuel points per minute in the regular season, but Harden wasn't far behind in third place with 1.60 per minute. Their efficiency gives them similar upside, but Harden played 36.8 minutes per game in the regular season to Giannis' 32.8. Adding in the reduced risk of a blowout means the pair offer similar ceilings, but Harden has the much higher floor, making him the stud worth paying way up for.

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