3 Daily Fantasy Basketball Players to Avoid on 3/11/16

Finding players you want to roster is a lot easier than finding players to avoid. Here are three players based on their price and matchups that could be landmines for your rosters tonight.

Finding players you want to roster is a lot easier than finding players to avoid. Here are three players based on their price and matchups that could be landmines for your rosters tonight.

You can find a ton of great information and research on guys you might want to include in your DFS NBA lineups tonight, but what about some guys you may want to lessen your exposure to, or even fade altogether?

Avoiding players whose matchups or situations aren't as great as they seem can often be just as important as finding the best targets each night. After all, it takes only one player to sink a lineup.

With a larger slate of NBA games on tonight, searching for the landmines could mean the difference from winning or losing your contests.

James Harden, SG, Houston Rockets

FanDuel Price: $11,000

James Harden has been destroying opposing defenses recently, and even in games where he has turned the ball over eight and nine times, he is still putting up big fantasy numbers. However, tonight, the Rockets head into Boston to play the Celtics, and Harden has to face off against one of the league's best on-ball defenders in Avery Bradley. In his first meeting against Bradley this season, Harden and the Rockets were blown out in their own building, and the Rockets’ shooting guard was limited to 4-of-10 from the floor and had one of his worst fantasy games of the season with only 17.7 FanDuel points.

With Harden’s recent performances, his price has been steadily rising, but at $11,000, you will need well over 50 FanDuel points from him tonight to reach value, and considering he is the most expensive player on the slate tonight, there are other players with similar prices that have much more desirable and beatable matchups than Harden does.

Bradley is allowing players he defends to shoot only 40.9 percent from the floor, which is nearly three percentage points better than those players shooting percentages for the season, and Bradley has been even better defending from the three-point line, holding players he has faced to 31.8 percent from beyond the arc. This has led the Celtics to being the eighth-best team at defending shooting guards this season, allowing only 0.72 FanDuel points per minute to the position. Don’t take the risk with Harden tonight. Even though his game log is very impressive, he could easily blow up your lineup before it even gets going tonight.

Pau Gasol, C, Chicago Bulls

FanDuel Price: $9,500

The Bulls are coming off a tough game last night against the Spurs, and now they play another game tonight that could be almost as tough against the Heat. Pau Gasol has been carrying the Bulls this season when Jimmy Butler and/or Derrick Rose are out with injury, but tonight, Gasol should see plenty of Hassan Whiteside defending him, even though the Heat big man has been coming off the bench. Gasol had a big game against the Heat the first time out in late January, but Whiteside did not play in that game. In their most recent matchup earlier this month, Whiteside and the Heat limited Gasol to about 35 FanDuel points, and while that’s a pretty good effort, for Gasol’s price of $9,500 tonight, it’s not worth the risk.

Whiteside has the Heat ranked as the sixth-best team at defending centers this season, allowing only 0.93 FanDuel points per minute to the position. Whiteside is holding his opponents to only 44.5 percent from the floor this season, which is 3.6 percent lower than those player’s averages, and he is limiting those players to an incredible 49 percent inside of six feet, which is nearly 12 percent lower than those player’s averages.

With Gasol coming off the back to back, and against an even tougher matchup than last night, Gasol is a landmine waiting to happen. The Bulls’ big man had a huge triple-double against the Blazers in his most recent game on no rest, but the Blazers are the 23rd-ranked team against centers this season. Even though Gasol hasn’t been bad on back to backs this season, he needs close to 45 FanDuel points to reach value tonight, and that will be hard against Whiteside and the Heat.

Rajon Rondo, PG, Sacramento Kings

FanDuel Price: $8,200

With DeMarcus Cousins out tonight thanks to being suspended for conduct detrimental to the team, Rajon Rondo and Rudy Gay are going to have to pick up the slack against the Magic. While Orlando isn’t a tough matchup for point guards, ranking 22nd against the position, without Cousins, Rondo might find it hard to dish out assists tonight. Nearly 30 percent of Rondo’s 711 assists this season have gone to Cousins. Without Boogie tonight, if one of Rondo’s main fantasy weapons decreases by almost 30 percent, he is a landmine waiting to happen.

Rondo and the Kings have played nine games this season without Cousins, and in those nine games, Rondo is averaging only 34.6 FanDuel points per game. While he has had some big games without Cousins, he has also had games where he has put up big landmines in beatable matchups. In his last game without Cousins in early February, Rondo turned the ball over six times, and we might be in store for more of that this evening.

According to NBA Wowy, Rondo’s FanDuel points per minute drop just slightly without Cousins in the lineup to 1.04 from 1.07, and his True Shooting Percentage goes from 49.4 to 48.1 when Cousins is off the floor. At his price tag, it may be a better idea to pay up a little more for one of the elite point guards on the slate instead of taking the risk of Rondo’s numbers going down without his star center on the floor.