FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Wednesday 11/20/19

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/Under Home Spread Away Total Home Total Away Pace Home Pace
San Antonio Washington 237.0 +2.0 119.5 117.5 16 7
Milwaukee Atlanta 232.0 +11.0 121.5 110.5 1 13
Houston Denver 223.0 -2.5 110.25 112.75 2 28
Golden State Dallas 221.5 -13.5 104.0 117.5 9 18
Utah Minnesota 221.0 +2.5 111.75 109.25 17 6
Charlotte Brooklyn 220.5 -4.0 108.25 112.25 21 5
Detroit Chicago 218.5 -1.5 108.5 110.0 29 3
Boston LA Clippers 218.5 -5.5 106.5 112.0 14 8
New York Philadelphia 213.5 -12.5 100.5 113.0 24 15
Cleveland Miami 212.5 -10.5 101.0 111.5 30 22
Orlando Toronto 208.5 -4.0 102.25 106.25 27 12

On an 11-game slate, we're going to have tons of injury news that opens up value, so be tuned into the news and FanDuel Scout.


At the top of the board, center has stud options: Karl-Anthony Towns ($10,800), Andre Drummond ($9,400), and Nikola Jokic ($9,000). KAT has a tough matchup with the Utah Jazz and Rudy Gobert ($8,200), so he's not a priority play. Drummond gets a matchup with the Chicago Bulls, who are 28th in rebounding rate. Jokic's Denver Nuggets will be way up in pace against the Houston Rockets in a close game with a high total.

But it's Ante Zizic ($3,500) who could really open up the slate. Tristan Thompson is out, and Larry Nance Jr. ($5,300) is questionable. Zizic ranks third on a per-dollar basis in my model despite a poor 0.64-FanDuel-point-per-minute average on the full year. He just should get safe minutes with the frontcourt so thin.

If Zizic gets derailed by not starting and you can't get up to the studs, then it's looking like Thomas Bryant ($6,600) and Marc Gasol ($5,800) in the middle of the pool with the best projectable value. Each has a plus matchup.

Core Plays: Ante Zizic, Andre Drummond, Nikola Jokic
Secondary Plays: Thomas Bryant, Marc Gasol, Nikola Vucevic ($8,500)
Tournament Plays: Karl-Anthony Towns, Rudy Gobert, Joel Embiid ($10,100)

Power Forward

Kawhi Leonard ($10,000) is questionable and hasn't played for three straight games, but the upper range of the power forward position looks nice. Bam Adebayo ($8,100) ranks as my model's favorite per-dollar power forward play in a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, who are 20th in rebounding rate. Adebayo puts up 1.23 FanDuel points per minute.

Kevin Love ($8,000) and LaMarcus Aldridge ($7,800) also rate out top five, with Aldridge sitting second behind Adebayo in floor/ceiling combo, per my model. Aldridge actually ranks third in value based on numberFire's projections. He, Al Horford ($7,200), and Draymond Green ($6,900) are all top-four, so the mid-range is also pretty loaded.

Daniel Theis ($4,500) looks like the best cheap play at the position in a matchup with the Los Angeles Clippers. Theis owns just a 12.6% usage rate but averages 0.99 FanDuel points per minute. With a minutes load of 23 or so, he can hit 5.0 FanDuel points per $1,000.

Core Plays: Bam Adebayo, LaMarcus Aldridge, Kevin Love
Secondary Plays: Daniel Theis, Draymond Green, Eric Paschall ($5,900)
Tournament Plays: Kawhi Leonard, Blake Griffin ($7,900), Maxi Kleber ($4,800)

Small Forward

Giannis Antetokounmpo ($12,100) is worth building around, as value is inevitable on an 11-game slate. Antetokounmpo leads the NBA in FanDuel points per minute (1.84). There's some blowout risk here against the Atlanta Hawks, but that's the only blemish about Giannis' projection for tonight. Amazingly, his 25th-percentile outcome (53.1) is still higher than any other small forward's 75th-percentile outcome despite a few other decent names on the list.

After Giannis, there's merit to spending down and glossing over the other studs, who should be considered high-upside, low-ownership tournament plays.

Brooklyn Nets teammates Taurean Prince ($5,000) and Joe Harris ($4,800) project as top-five plays in a matchup with the Charlotte Hornets' 28th-ranked defense. Troy Brown ($3,900) offers salary relief, too. Brown has played 27, 26, and 24 minutes the past three games and is in the premier game of the night.

Core Plays: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Taurean Prince, Troy Brown
Secondary Plays: Joe Harris, De'Andre Hunter ($4,500)
Tournament Plays: Pascal Siakam ($9,400), Paul George ($8,300), Jaylen Brown ($7,300)

Shooting Guard

Shooting guard -- similar to power forward -- is pretty deep in the $7,000-and-up range. Bradley Beal ($9,900) is part of the game with the highest total on the board, and he consistently logs minutes in the upper-30s. He's worth building around in such a good spot.

Donovan Mitchell ($8,300) will be up in pace against the Minnesota Timberwolves' average defense. Mitchell is part of a dead heat between Beal, James Harden ($11,700), and Jimmy Butler ($9,500), based on numberFire's projections.

Spencer Dinwiddie ($7,300) has a 33.1% usage rate without Kyrie Irving, who is out tonight. He's a core play at that salary for me.

Bryn Forbes ($4,300) is in the game of the night, Tyler Herro ($4,500) will be without Derrick Jones Jr. and Justise Winslow again, and Garrett Temple ($4,400) should get up near 30 minutes tonight.

Core Plays: Bradley Beal, Donovan Mitchell, Spencer Dinwiddie
Secondary Plays: Tyler Herro, Bryn Forbes, Fred VanVleet ($7,900)
Tournament Plays: James Harden, DeMar DeRozan ($8,000), Devonte' Graham ($7,100)

Point Guard

Luka Doncic ($11,500) and Trae Young ($9,700) stand out amongst the studs tonight. Doncic does have blowout risk but is up in pace against the NBA's worst defense. Young will play the Association's fastest team. It's certainly worth noting that numberFire's projections love Ben Simmons ($8,300) most and actually put him second in value at the entire position.

Kendrick Nunn ($5,800) will remain boosted without Jones and Winslow. Nunn has played 36, 37, and 39 minutes the past three games, an elite workload that has led to 16, 16, and 19 shot attempts.

Isaiah Thomas ($5,800) at the same price spurs intrigue against San Antonio in the game of the night. On the flip side of that, we have Patty Mills ($3,600) could be freed up without Derrick White and with Dejounte Murray on a minutes cap.

Core Plays: Trae Young, Kendrick Nunn, Patty Mills
Secondary Plays: Luka Doncic, Ben Simmons, Isaiah Thomas
Tournament Plays: Mike Conley ($6,700), Kemba Walker ($7,900), Terry Rozier ($6,900)