3 NBA FanDuel Studs to Target on 12/26/19

Luka Doncic is expected to return on Thursday, making him well worth paying up for against the Spurs.

Basketball is the most consistent sport for daily fantasy purposes.

A top slugger in baseball will have his fair share of 0-for-4 days, and an elite fantasy football player is at risk of having games where his team's offense as a whole is shut down. A high-priced NBA stud is generally going to get his, though. With so many possessions in a game providing opportunities to produce, top fantasy basketball options will be posting high scores just about every night.

While this consistency puts us in a good position to identify top plays, it also means you can't afford to miss when you're paying up for someone. Even with strong value plays in your lineup, paying up and getting a dud is likely going to leave your lineup drawing pretty close to dead.

Let's get right into it and look at which top players should be the focal points of your lineups tonight.

Luka Doncic, PG, Dallas Mavericks ($10,500)

There's obviously a ton of risk involved in playing Luka Doncic tonight as he returns from an ankle injury that has kept him on the shelf since December 14. He is expected to return tonight, though, and his salary is low enough to make that a risk worth taking.

Doncic's final game before the injury had him priced at $12,000, and he had a salary of at least $12k in 9 of his last 11 games. That means we're getting about a $1,500 injury discount on a guy who ranked third in the NBA with 55.8 FanDuel points per game before his injury-shortened outing on the 14th.

It's not like Doncic was relying on massive minutes to rack up those numbers, either, as he averaged 33.4 minutes per game in full contests. His 1.67 FanDuel points per minute rank second among players with 500-plus minutes played on the year, and that efficiency means he can be well worth $10,500 even if he does end up limited a bit in his first game back.

Andre Drummond, C, Detroit Pistons ($9,500)

Andre Drummond has eclipsed 50.0 FanDuel points in three of his last five and six of his last nine games, averaging 51.2 per game over those nine. That already leaves him underpriced here, with that average representing 5.4 fantasy points per $1,000 of salary. He's also averaging better than five-times value on this salary for the season (49.1 FanDuel points per game).

You typically only expect to see a top producer underpriced like this in a tough matchup, but that's not the case tonight as Drummond gets to take on the Washington Wizards.

Ranking third in pace while sitting dead-last in both defensive rating and total rebound rate, the Wiz are allowing the most points (121.7) and sixth-most rebounds (46.4) per game in the NBA, which has them allowing top-five fantasy numbers to opposing centers.

Spencer Dinwiddie, PG, Brooklyn Nets ($8,100)

With Kyrie Irving still on the shelf, Spencer Dinwiddie is in a terrific spot against the New York Knicks.

Dinwiddie's numbers are night-and-day with and without Kyrie. In 11 contests with Irving, Dinwiddie has turned a 28.3% usage rate and 26.1 minutes into 27.1 FanDuel points per game. Without Irving (18 games), those numbers climb to 42.3 FanDuel points in 33.3 minutes per game on 32.8% usage.

The Knicks check in at 27th in defensive rating and have surrendered the NBA's fifth-most fantasy points per minute to opposing point guards.

Jason Schandl is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Jason Schandl also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username Jaymun. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in his articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.