FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Wednesday 2/9/22
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 basketball is very reliant on a player's 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 break down today's main slate on FanDuel.
The Slate and Key Injuries
Some traded pieces don't officially hit today's injury report, but they are statuses to watch. That includes Domantas Sabonis (Sacramento), Caris LeVert (Cleveland), Nickeil Alexander-Walker (Portland), and Josh Hart (Portland).
On the injury front, Darius Garland is the largest name in doubt. He's questionable for the Cavs due to his lingering back issue. Lonnie Walker is questionable on the other side for San Antonio with a knee injury.
As many DFS players are aware, Gordon Hayward rolled his ankle for Charlotte minutes in Monday's game. He's out for Wednesday.
Elsewhere, Utah has already ruled out Rudy Gobert (calf) once again. Rudy Gay (knee) is also questionable with a knee injury. On the other side, Golden State has already ruled out Klay Thompson (rest), Andre Iguodala (back), and Nemanja Bjelica (back). Kevon Looney is questionable with a quad issue.
The Kings may need Sabonis' help on Wednesday. Marvin Bagley III is questionable for Wednesday after missing Tuesday with an ankle injury. Maurice Harkless is likely closer to doubtful after exiting last night's game with an ankle sprain. Richaun Holmes (personal issues) was scratched shortly before lock and is up in the air, as well.
On the other side, watch for D'Angelo Russell (shin) and Patrick Beverley (ankle) on the second leg of Minnesota's back-to-back. Their official injury report hasn't come yet.
The Blazers' rotation could be in flux due to the C.J. McCollum trade, but the Lakers should be at full strength sans Carmelo Anthony (hamstring). Though, on a back-to-back against a really poor squad, watch both Anthony Davis and LeBron James closely for rest.
Stephen Curry ($9,500): With Klay resting, Steph is viable at this salary. He's seen a 1.5-percentage-point increase in usage with Thompson off the floor, and there is no Jordan Poole freebie today. Poole is $6,900, and so the floor-ceiling debate in tournaments is much more even. The tight spread against the Jazz -- plus two top-15 teams in terms of pace -- inspires the chance for a solid environment overall, and Curry will lead the way for the Dubs.
De'Aaron Fox ($8,100): If Sabonis plays, it likely would be in a clunky fashion. He's never practiced with the team. Therefore, it's apparent Fox should have a monstrous role once again on Wednesday. He returned from his ankle injury to a 34.8% usage rate, but much more importantly, he also played 35 minutes. A full-time lead role with that type of usage in a game that currently has a 233.5-point projected total is a high-floor package for just above $8,000.
Anfernee Simons ($6,800): All in all, Simons' 22.5% usage rate last night was disappointing considering his backcourt mate was shipped out before tip-off. Struggling from the field in February (41.8%) has likely decreased his shot volume. Still, he's a high-floor option who will be popular given the 224.0-point total, and he played 38 minutes on Tuesday with the game well decided. He sees a slight downgrade if Hart and Alexander-Walker make their debuts, though.
Others to Consider:
LaMelo Ball ($8,400): The answer to a Charlotte Hornet today is yes. Ball has the highest upside of any.
Terry Rozier ($6,400): At a much lower salary, Rozier still averages 0.96 FanDuel points per minute without Hayward. Solid.
Ben McLemore ($4,600): He saw 30 minutes starting on Tuesday, so obviously viable if Hart/NAW do not suit up.
Coby White ($4,500): Didn't produce in his first game back from injury, but a 30-ish minute bench role isn't bad for this salary mark.
LeBron James ($10,800): I've been known to be wrong predicting injuries, but I highly doubt LeBron suits up against a Portland squad in total chaos. The spots don't get much better, though, so he should be amongst the top choices if he plays as expected currently. He destroyed the awful Blazers' defense for 43 points and 14 boards the last time he played them, and his 29.7% usage rate since returning keeps a monster game in his range of outcomes.
Anthony Edwards ($7,400): Rostering Edwards is a powerful way to harness probability in DFS. He's shot just 32.7% in February, including 2-for-12 last night in this exact same matchup with the Kings. In short, he's been awful for this salary. Still, he has dropped over 25 real-life points seven times since the start of 2022, and this game has a massive total once again. If he busts out of his shooting slump, he's a perfect play for tournaments on -- likely -- few rosters.
Kelly Oubre ($6,100): With a 23.7% usage rate with Hayward off the floor this season, Oubre has a role far closer to Ball and Miles Bridges than his salary would otherwise indicate. Worth noting, Cody Martin should still be sidelined for Charlotte, and that will likely thrust Oubre into a starting role. Oubre takes shots no matter the circumstances; he's posted 11 straight games with double-digit attempts -- some with very little court time. He's a high-floor play as a result.
Others to Consider:
Miles Bridges ($7,200): Actually sees a 1.2-percentage-point increase in usage with Oubre. Can easily use them together.
Scottie Barnes ($6,400): Still under-salaried for his massive minute allocation currently. Nick Nurse grinds his starters, man.
Justise Winslow ($4,300): Tremendous value no matter the active Blazers. Started and saw 32 minutes Tuesday. Block and steal upside.
C.J. Elleby ($3,900): Likely takes the biggest hit if Josh Hart plays. Still, Elleby's role could be decent. Again, no practices for the new guys.
Karl-Anthony Towns ($9,900): The blowout of the Kings on Tuesday stymied his FanDuel score, but Towns was still having a monster game through three quarters. With no Joel Embiid or Nikola Jokic on this slate, the best bet at the top of center is to ride with him again and hope Sacramento can keep it closer. They're bottom-10 in every rebounding category and now without two big men, so Towns' floor is incredibly high if he can see his full minutes.
Evan Mobley ($7,000): Mobley's salary is reduced after two down games. It's for a reason; Kevin Love definitely adds risk to this frontcourt. Love was expanded to 32 minutes on Sunday. Love's role isn't particularly sticky unless he's playing well, though, so there is a reason to still roster Mobley at this suppressed salary. This is a massive pace-up spot for the 22nd-paced Cavs. San Antonio is third in that category, and Cleveland sits as a six-point home favorite.
Chimezie Metu ($4,300): Value centers on the Kings are usually a losing proposition, but if the dominos fall the correct way, Metu may be the last viable one standing. Bagley and Holmes are unlikely to play, and Sabonis stepping into a massive role without any practice would seem to be ill-advised. Metu logged 32 minutes on Tuesday, and at 0.94 FanDuel points per minute this season, we know he can make the most of them. He's untouchable if Sabonis plays, though.
Others to Consider:
Jusuf Nurkic ($7,700): Team-high 26.4% usage rate and played 32 minutes in a blowout on Tuesday. The clear second option to Towns.
Jarrett Allen ($7,600): Less risk to find the bench than Mobley but also less reward with the higher salary. He's fine.
PJ Washington ($4,900): 32 minutes with no Hayward on Monday. Even played next to Mason Plumlee at times. Great value big.
Derrick Favors ($3,800): Played 26 minutes starting and surprisingly did nothing Monday. High FanDuel point-per-minute guy historically. Sneaky, sneaky.