FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Wednesday 11/13/19

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 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 bunch of other great resources to help give you an edge.

Daily fantasy NBA is very reliant on opportunity, so you'll need to make sure that you're up-to-date with key injuries. Our projections update up until tip-off to reflect current news, we have player news updates, and the FanDuel Scout app will send push notifications for pressing updates regarding your players.

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

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

The Slate

Away Home Over/
LA Clippers Houston 233.5 -2.5 115.50 118.00 6 1
Washington Boston 229.5 -8.5 110.50 119.00 7 15
San Antonio Minnesota 227.0 -2.0 112.50 114.50 13 8
Memphis Charlotte 221.0 -2.0 109.50 111.50 11 19
Golden State LA Lakers 220.0 -8.0 106.00 114.00 9 17
Toronto Portland 218.0 -3.0 107.50 110.50 10 20
Philadelphia Orlando 204.5 -1.0 101.75 102.75 12 27

So the Philadelphia 76ers and Orlando Magic game looks like the dud of the night from an over/under perspective, but every team other than Orlando ranks top-20 in offensive seconds per play. It should be another fun night for DFS.


Center is pretty deep, and three of numberFire's five best values are at this solo position: Robert Williams ($3,900), Enes Kanter ($4,300), and JaVale McGee ($4,200). Daniel Theis is doubtful, paving the way for Williams and Kanter to log safe minutes at cheap tags for the Boston Celtics. Williams has been super efficient on a per-minute basis (1.35 FanDuel points). Kanter is at 0.90.

McGee and Dwight Howard ($4,700) are in a similar boat with Anthony Davis out. Howard (1.12) and McGee (1.07) both break the 1.0-FanDuel-point-per-minute threshold. The Golden State Warriors rank 23rd in rebounding rate and 30th in defensive rating.

Marc Gasol ($5,600) also rates out well in the mid-range in a matchup with the Portland Trail Blazers, who are 24th in rebounding rate. Gasol's minutes have steadily been around 30-plus over his past five games, outside of one matchup.

The value at the position makes Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,900) very appealing, as his 75th-percentile outcome in my projections is 58.8, about 15 points higher than anyone other than Nikola Vucevic ($9,400) and Clint Capela ($9,000).

Core Plays: Robert Williams, Enes Kanter, JaVale McGee
Secondary Plays: Karl-Anthony Towns, Dwight Howard, Marc Gasol
Tournament Plays: Nikola Vucevic, Clint Capela

Power Forward

With no Brow on the slate, power forward is pretty cheap by default, but it's Rondae Hollis-Jefferson ($4,200) who rates out as the top value play among the position. RHJ played 15 minutes in his return, but that spiked to 29 minutes on Monday. He averaged 0.96 FanDuel points per minute last season and is at 0.98 in a limited sample this year.

Kyle Kuzma ($5,000) is set for 27 minutes tonight, per numberFire's projections, and without Davis on the court, he has a 31.9% usage rate over 52 minutes, according to RotoGrinders' CourtIQ. Kuzma and Hollis-Jefferson make for an easy power forward duo, albeit a likely popular one.

If not spending down on one of those two, Jayson Tatum ($8,400), Al Horford ($7,200), and Draymond Green ($6,700) all look good. Tatum has a 27.4% usage rate without Daniel Theis. Horford has a 24.2% usage rate without Joel Embiid. Green has posted 0.98 FanDuel points per minute when actually playing this season.

The top tournament values in my model are Hollis-Jefferson, Kuzma, Horford, P.J. Tucker ($5,100), Aaron Gordon ($5,700), Tatum, and Green.

Core Plays: Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, Kyle Kuzma, Jayson Tatum
Secondary Plays: Al Horford, Draymond Green, Aaron Gordon
Tournament Plays: P.J. Tucker, Jaren Jackson Jr. ($7,000)

Small Forward

LeBron James ($11,800) has a 37.3% usage rate without Anthony Davis on the court over a 104-minute sample. He's a locked in play in all formats.

Kawhi Leonard ($10,300) and Pascal Siakam ($9,700) also look able to pay off their tags, so you don't have to play James if you can't afford him, though he's the clear priority of the three.

Of the cheaper plays, Maurice Harkless ($3,800), Glenn Robinson III ($4,100), Miles Bridges ($5,900) all check the box.

Landry Shamet is out, opening up minutes for Harkless; numberFire projects him for 30.9 minutes and the top value mark of the night at the position. Robinson averages 31.0 minutes per game, good for a high floor. Bridges rates out third in floor/ceiling combination in my model tonight.

Core Plays: LeBron James, Maurice Harkless, Miles Bridges
Secondary Plays: Pascal Siakam, Glenn Robinson, Kawhi Leonard
Tournament Plays: Jaylen Brown ($7,200), Rudy Gay ($4,900), Tobias Harris ($7,300)

Shooting Guard

It's usually hard to go wrong with James Harden ($12,200), but he should draw Kawhi Leonard's defense if Leonard plays (which seems likely). Harden is a tournament priority with Leonard and an elite play without him.

Harden's teammate, Ben McLemore ($3,500), should start without Eric Gordon but figures to have low usage alongside Harden and Russell Westbrook ($9,900). He still rates out as a top-tier value play at the position given the minutes.

Malik Monk ($4,000) could start tonight with Dwayne Bacon doubtful. Monk averages just 0.70 FanDuel points per minute. Norman Powell ($4,800) should surpass 30 minutes against the Portland Trail Blazers. So we have some cheaper shooting guards to target.

If possible, prioritizing DeMar DeRozan ($7,600) and/or Fred VanVleet ($7,500) should elevate a lineup's floor despite the enticing value at the shooting guard slot. DeRozan (1.01) and VanVleet (0.92) are strong per-minute producers and are in games with tight spreads.

Core Plays: Malik Monk, Ben McLemore, DeMar DeRozan
Secondary Plays: James Harden, Fred VanVleet, Norman Powell
Tournament Plays: Bradley Beal ($8,900), D'Angelo Russell ($9,200), Lou Williams ($7,000)

Point Guard

Point guard has a lot of strong plays at the top: Damian Lillard ($10,200), Russell Westbrook ($9,900), Kemba Walker ($9,000), Ben Simmons ($8,400), and Terry Rozier ($7,000). They're the top five for me by a pretty comfortable margin, so saving salary for a point guard duo will be the default for me tonight.

Among the five, Lillard's price makes him a non-essential piece, and Westbrook gets a tough individual matchup with mortal enemy Patrick Beverley ($5,000) in a still-great overall game environment.

It's Simmons without Embiid (leading to a 19.1% usage rate and 1.18 FanDuel points per minute), Walker against the Washington Wizards' 28th-ranked defense, and Rozier with a downward trending price (despite a fine 0.89 FanDuel points per minute mark) who will probably make up the core for me.

The best punt play options look like Beverley ($5,000), Alex Caruso ($3,500), Markelle Fultz ($4,500), and Michael Carter-Williams ($3,700), but it's a night where spending up is more enticing -- especially with value at the other spots.

Core Plays: Ben Simmons, Kemba Walker, Terry Rozier
Secondary Plays: Russell Westbrook, Damian Lillard, Patrick Beverley
Tournament Plays: Ja Morant ($7,200), Dejounte Murray ($6,600)