4 NBA FanDuel Studs to Target on 2/10/16
This is the last full NBA slate before the All-Star break, with 12 games on tap tonight. With so much action, there are a ton of directions you can go with your daily fantasy lineups. If you take a look at the value plays available tonight, you'll find some nice space to include some high-priced studs in your lineup.
I'm going to break down those top-end plays for the night, finding guys capable of putting up monster fantasy scores, and being the foundation of your lineups.
Steph Curry, PG, Golden State Warriors
Steph Curry looked like he was going to go an absolute tear last night when he went five-of-six from three-point range in the first quarter, but he eventually cooled down, finishing with 35 points, 9 assists and 5 rebounds, good for 55.5 FanDuel points.
He sits third in FanDuel points per game over the last month with 48.8, and he has put up 50-plus fantasy points in 9 of 14 games in that span. His 32.6 percent Usage Rate for the last month is the fourth-highest among players seeing at least 10 minutes per game, and his 30.8 points per game are the best for the month.
He's up against the Phoenix Suns today, who really struggle defensively. They rank 28th in the league with a 109.0 Defensive Efficiency and are especially weak against guards, giving up the second most fantasy points to opposing point guards and the third most to shooting guards. Their poor perimeter defense has them giving up the second highest three-point percentage in the league, while they're also allowing a league-high .529 Effective Field Goal Percentage.
As an added bonus, this game promises to have tons of possessions, as both the Suns and Warriors are in the top five in Pace this season. With all this going for him, it's no surprise that our projections have Curry putting up more fantasy points than anyone tonight.
Damian Lillard, PG, Portland Trail Blazers
Damian Lillard has been playing some of his best basketball over the past month. He's 10th in the league with 23.0 points and 7th with 8.1 assists per game. He has a 29.5 percent Usage Rate in that span, and his 39.7 fantasy points per game are 10th in the league.
He draws a matchup against the Rockets tonight, who are on the second leg of a back-to-back after giving up 123 points in a fast-paced game against the Warriors.
While giving up big points to the Warriors isn't a huge red flag on its own, the Rockets have struggled defensively all year. Their 108.7 Defensive Efficiency ranks 24th while they're giving up the 5th-highest Effective Field Goal Percentage. They're allowing the most assists per game this season and are giving up the third most three-point attempts per game while allowing the ninth highest three-point percentage.
Lillard has the ability to score against any defense, and with a 35.6 percent Assist Rate and 8.0 three-point attempts per game, he matches up perfectly with the Rockets.
LeBron James, SF, Cleveland Cavaliers
While the big story for tonight's game is about the excitement and emotion of one last game between LeBron James and Kobe Bryant, the reality is that it's likely to be an anti-climactic game with the Lakers getting destroyed and with LeBron dominating the game.
The Lakers are dead last this year with a 110.2 Defensive Efficiency. They have major struggles with rim protection and defending the paint, allowing the fifth-highest percentage of field goal attempts within three feet of the basket, while also allowing the second-highest field goal percentage on those shots. This season, a career-high 43.2 percent of LeBron's field goal attempts have come within three feet, and he should be able to get to the basket at will tonight.
LeBron is always a threat for big fantasy scoring, and his 44.2 FanDuel points per game rank sixth in the league. With a great matchup today, he could give Curry a run for his money, and our numbers project him to put up the second best score of the night.
DeMarcus Cousins, C, Sacramento Kings
DeMarcus Cousins has seen his production slow down a bit since he put together an absurd stretch in January, but he has still been exceptional and has a terrific matchup today.
Boogie is averaging a league-high 49.8 FanDuel points per game over the past month, putting up 29.3 points 11.7 rebounds and 4.0 assists in 36.7 minutes per game. His 36.7 percent Usage Rate in that span is also the best mark among players seeing at least 10 minutes per game.
This matchup should be great for fantasy scoring all-around, but Cousins is in an especially good spot. Sacramento plays at the fastest pace in the league, while the 76ers' 97.6 Pace ranks fifth, meaning we should see a ton of possessions. The Sixers are also in the bottom 10 in both Offensive and Defensive Rebound Rate and rank 25th with a .483 Effective Field Goal percentage, meaning there will be plenty of rebounds to go around.
They're giving up the third most fantasy points to power forwards and the most to centers this season, and with the best fantasy production in the league of players at either position, nobody is better positioned to take advantage of this than Cousins.