FanDuel Daily Fantasy Basketball Helper: Tuesday 1/3/23
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
I'm a bit skeptical about the headliner of Tuesday's injury report.
The Bucks have Giannis Antetokounmpo (knee) and Jrue Holiday (illness) listed as probable, but both have been scratched from that status this year. They've also got George Hill (illness) listed as questionable. We'll still watch with keen interest there.
The Celtics are in Oklahoma City and have Robert Williams (knee) listed as questionable to potentially rest. The Thunder's messy frontcourt is still down Aleksej Pokusevski (leg) and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (ankle).
If you're worried about Shai Gilgeous-Alexander ($10,400) against the stingy Boston defense, it's worth remembering he dropped 37 points and 8 assists inside their building back in November.
Considering he's also failed to eclipse 45 FanDuel points in back-to-back contests, SGA might be an unpopular target with upside on a three-game slate. That's intriguing.
Our projections aren't really into any one guard today, but De'Aaron Fox ($8,800) is grading out better than SGA, which makes sense given the 243.0-point total in Utah. With Collin Sexton out for the Jazz, we can squeeze some per-dollar value out of Jordan Clarkson ($7,100) and Mike Conley ($5,800), too.
Josh Giddey ($7,500) and Marcus Smart ($6,300) are the only two other guards projecting over a 4.50 value score, which in itself is mediocre. Our model also fancies Derrick White at present given his workload last game, but I actually believe Malcolm Brogdon ($5,300) is the target there as his minutes should increase two more days removed from an illness.
Giannis Antetokounmpo ($12,300) took the weekend off -- as he usually does. He still should be enormously popular on this three-game slate.
Antetonkoumpo posted consecutive games over 78 FanDuel points before that, and it's not really a surprise given Milwaukee is still missing Khris Middleton. With Middleton off the floor, Giannis averages 60.0 FanDuel points per 36 minutes on a gaudy 38.6% usage rate.
It's tough sledding here today, too. Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, and Lauri Markkanen are all salaried well above their median this season after splash games last week. If anything, Kyle Kuzma ($8,300) is the next stop down if Bradley Beal sits again for Washington, but even he's failed to eclipse 40 FanDuel points in three of his last four -- all without Beal for portions of the game.
Harrison Barnes ($5,500) is the model's top projected player now, and that'll only get better if Huerter and Monk sit for Sactown. Add Keegan Murray ($5,100) and Terence Davis II ($3,900) as beneficiaries if both end up not playing. On the other side, Malik Beasley ($4,800) should be in line for expanded work without Sexton.
This is really where I want to spend my salary on the slate.
Domantas Sabonis ($10,300) has a great matchup against a Jazz squad ceding the second-most FanDuel points to centers. He's also a buy-low candidate, failing to eclipse 52 FanDuel points in back-to-back games after doing so in seven straight. I won't build a lineup without him, honestly.
We also saw the damage Kristaps Porzingis ($9,500) can do on Friday without Bradley Beal. He posted 30 points and 13 boards against Orlando but surrounded that game with a pair of abnormal rebounding efforts (below six in both contests). In a high-paced duel with the Bucks, I can see the upside again.
Bobby Portis' three-game reign of terror as chalk ends tonight if Jrue Holiday does indeed return, so I'd rather turn to the similarly salaried Brook Lopez ($6,700), who is in Milwaukee's starting lineup and expected to still see full minutes.
Al Horford ($5,600) is the best value play on the slate if Timelord does rest his knee. In a revenge game we all forgot, Horford would be locked into a 30-minute role at center against OKC, who allow the third-most FanDuel points to centers.
Kelly Olynyk ($6,000) and Daniel Gafford ($5,700) -- if he suits up -- are two of the model's favorite value plays, too.