Another day, another rousing success. Using yesterday's optimized roster, numberFire Chief Analyst Keith Goldner scored 307 fantasy points using StarStreet's scoring system. All but one of our players scored above what was expected of their price range, and we have now placed an ancient voodoo curse on Ben Gordon for ruining our perfect day.
And we're back to do it once again. Through the power of Math!, we've optimized the best possible roster for your Daily Fantasy needs, using the cost figures and scoring system from our friends at StarStreet as a guide.
As always, the full tables for today's action are available at our Daily Fantasy Projections page. But I'm here to break down the best of the best and tell you why they're so valuable.
The numberFire Optimized Roster
Kobe Bryant - He's Kobe. He's going to put up shots. You know this. It's just a matter of how well he'll be able to convert that into points. Against a Utah team that is 22nd in defensive rating, allowing opposing shooting guards to go .501 effective field goal percentage (eFG%), and is 25th in allowing opponents to get to the charity stripe via free throw factor (FT/FGA), my guess is very, very well.
David Lee - Ignore for a second the foul trouble from his previous two games, and you'll see a big man on fire. Before last game, he hadn't had lower than 12 points in a contest since November 9. He's averaging 10.4 rebounds per game over his last 10 contests. And he's facing the team with the fastest pace in the league, meaning more opportunities. Now, will foul trouble be a concern for a third straight game? We don't think so; expect a regression to the mean of 3.1 fouls per game.
Paul Millsap - I've been doing this Daily Fantasy article for, oh, a month now? I think this is the first time a player from my childhood favorite team has showed up. I'm excited. And I don't expect Millsap to let me down, especially considering his six straight games with at least 14 points before Saturday's injury-plagued contest. Opponents are scoring more points from the power forward slot than any other position against the Thunder as well, 20.0 PPG.
J.J. Hickson - An optimized roster favorite, Hickson gets to become the latest to try and exploit Miami's relative lack of size inside. The Heat are allowing opposing centers to shoot .502 eFG% and collect 14.2 rebounds per game against them this season. That rebounding total, by the way, is 3.4 more per game than the Heat are collecting themselves from the center position, meaning that Hickson's competition for boards down low may be negligible.
Kyle Lowry - Strangely enough, his projected 30.3 minutes tonight against Denver may actually be too low: Lowry has topped 30 minutes in four of his past five games with Jose Calderon gone (and the other game, he played 29 minutes). So I wouldn't be worried about one field goal outings, he's destined to return to the mean sometime. At 12th in defensive rating, the Nuggets aren't a weak defense, but they aren't a lock to shut Lowry down, either.
Mike Conley - The assists are staying consistent (three straight games with at least eight), but the points have been fluctuating for Conley recently. I don't like to guarantee bounceback nights because the analytics are only estimates, but if there's one game where I can do that, it's this one. The Kings are dead last in the NBA with a 111.1 defensive rating (points allowed per 100 possessions), and opposing point guards are shooting a ridiculous .532 eFG% against them this season.
Chandler Parsons - Remember earlier in the season, when we all thought that Golden State had a decent defense? Well, here's that particular idea careening off a cliff. They're now 19th in defensive rating, and their sixth-ranked pace means that there are even more points to be had. For Parsons, that could equal a pay-day: he has scored 20 points in three of his past six games, and with James Harden questionable, he may just be the number one option for Houston tonight.
DeMar DeRozan - The highest usage rate among Toronto's starters at 23.7 percent, DeRozan often finds the ball in his hands. I don't see that changing against Denver, who allows opposing shooting guards to shoot a right-near-average .488 eFG% against them this season. And while he had a down game against New Orleans on Sunday (lowering his cost), DeRozan had attempted at least 16 shots in each of Toronto's eight games prior.
Andre Miller - Not only is Andre Miller the lowest cost of any player on today's roster, but at a 2.4 FP to dollar ratio, he's also the lowest potential value as well. But without many low-priced values today, Miller will have to do. Not that he's a bad risk pick, mind you: Toronto allows opposing point guards to shoot .492 eFG% against them this season. But his minutes ceiling is also capped, as his 40 in his last game only came on account of three overtimes against Boston. Andre Iguodala's current questionable status gives us some confidence in his minutes, however.
Your medium-sized sleeper of the day is Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors. Our best overall value, Thompson has been seeing the minutes lately, but not the points. With 11 points or under in three of his past four games, his cost has fallen all the way to $9,100. But if a guy averaging 16.3 points per game is facing the fastest-paced team in the league that allows small forwards to shoot .528 eFG% from the field, I think I'll take my chances.
Your deep sleeper of the day is Carlos Delfino of the Houston Rockets. OK, he's not exactly a deep sleeper at $7,500. He's worth a consideration as an alternative to Andre Miller, however. Golden State's recent weak defense has already been documented, and with James Harden questionable for tonight's game, Delfino could see an increase in playing time alongside the aforementioned Chandler Parsons.
Stay away from Nicolas Batum of the Portland Trail Blazers today. There are ways to attack the Miami Heat. Those ways are at point guard and center, which the Blazers should have significant contributions from in the form of Damian Lillard and J.J. Hickson. Small forward? Not so much, considering the Heat allow opponents to shoot only .467 eFG% from that spot this season.
The game to watch today is Rockets/Warriors. Do you see how many Rockets and Warriors players are on our optimized roster up there? Not to mention both of my sleepers? In a battle between the teams with the first and sixth quickest paces in the NBA, both of whom have weaker defenses, I'm expecting a barn burner. And that equals stats galore for your optimized fantasy roster.