FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Tuesday 12/13/22
Since it's much simpler to predict than baseball or football, daily fantasy basketball would get plenty of votes as the best sport to play on FanDuel. Players usually stick to the same minutes and produce at roughly the same rate. Sounds easy, right?
As a result, NBA daily fantasy is highly reliant on a player's opportunity, so you'll need to ensure 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.
With so much changing so quickly, we're here with plenty of tools to help you. We have daily projections, a matchup heat map, a lineup optimizer, and a bunch of other great resources to help give you an edge.
We'll also be coming at you with this primer daily, 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
Today's injury report isn't nearly as chaotic as yesterday's, but there's some notable activity.
Another guard is questionable in Milwaukee. Jrue Holiday (illness) is that guard, but his teammate Khris Middleton (ankle) is probable after missing Sunday's game. The visiting Golden State Warriors remain without Andrew Wiggins (adductor).
There are a pair of justifiable stars at the top of guard.
The easier -- and likely more popular -- option is James Harden ($9,700). He's posted over 50 FanDuel points in back-to-back games since returning last week, so he's a given. The contrarian option might be Stephen Curry ($9,900).
Entering this national television spot, Curry has started December slowly. He's shooting 41.3% this month against his 50.3% mark for the entire season. It's not all sunshine and rainbows; his usage rate has dropped a bit (30.6% this season to 28.8% in December) with Jordan Poole ($6,400) in the lineup, but he's an intriguing tournament play.
Our model loves a Chris Paul ($7,200) revenge game in Houston today. Paul is still dusting off the cobwebs after missing most of the season due to injury, yet he's still managed to post 38.8 FanDuel points per 36 minutes during floor situations without D-Book.
Paul's teammate Damion Lee ($4,200) logged 31 minutes in Booker's absence on Sunday, so he should be a viable value plug on this slate, as well. Other value guards projecting well on this slate include the steal-centric De'Anthony Melton ($6,300), Mike Conley ($5,900), and Dennis Schroder ($4,800).
Especially if Holiday can't go, we can turn to Giannis Antetokounmpo ($11,600) in a spot he'll want to show out against the defending champs.
With Jrue off the floor this season, Giannis is averaging 59.3 FanDuel points per 36 minutes, but it's a 1.7-percentage-point increase in usage rate that stands out to me. He'll take more shots even with Khris Middleton ($6,900) back in the fold, and both should see boosts without the offense's primary ballhandler.
Beyond Giannis, there are some pretty ugly results in the upper mid-range. Middleton is the opening salvo of the true mid-range, and the white-hot Klay Thompson ($6,900) is a consideration, as well. Thompson's usage in December (29.9%) has actually been higher than Steph's.
Speaking of usage, Mikal Bridges ($6,400) nabs a bit more with Booker out, too. He's posted 32.9 FanDuel points per 36 with Booker off the floor, but the real prize is the 44 minutes he logged with Booker out Sunday. Torrey Craig ($4,800) should also see plenty of minutes; he logged 36 in that one.
These are a bulk of the guys projecting well on the wings today, but Harrison Barnes ($5,600), Lonnie Walker ($5,200), and Keegan Murray ($4,900) are also great bets -- especially for the Kings' duo if De'Aaron Fox sits.
Davis gets to attack a Boston squad missing Al Horford, so it's not as brutal of a matchup as usual. Still, I'd rather turn to Embiid, who has posted at least 55 FanDuel points in five of his past six games and holds the lower salary. Embiid gets a Sacramento squad that's bottom-10 in paints points allowed per game (52.6).
Above those two, our projections believe Domantas Sabonis ($8,800) is a better value, and I concur even more so if Fox sits. Sabonis averaged 46.4 FanDuel points per 36 with Fox off the floor this season; I'd just worry about the Kings' competitiveness.
In Houston, Deandre Ayton ($8,600) averages 47.5 FanDuel points per 36 minutes with Booker off the floor, so there is value there. I'd turn to him sooner than Alperen Sengun ($6,400) in the same contest, who seems to be losing a grip on his full-time role.
This will be a positional group to save salary for between those three. Only Draymond Green ($6,000) is projecting above a 5.20 value score at these spots today, but Jabari Smith ($5,800), Kevon Looney ($4,800), Grant Williams ($4,800), and P.J. Tucker ($3,700) are not the worst options, per the model. Tucker will need rebounds to reach a tangible upside, so don't pair him with Embiid often.