3 Daily Fantasy Basketball Players to Avoid on 3/31/16

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 smaller 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: $10,900

The Rockets are going to need every win they can get heading down the stretch run of the season, and tonight they play a team in a similar predicament, but in a little worse shape. While the Rockets are in a three-team tie for the final two spots in the Western Conference playoffs, the Bulls are looking up at the rest of the East, and are two full games back of the Pacers for the 8 seed.

With both teams desperate for a win, their defenses should be as engaged as possible tonight, and that includes the Bulls’ best defender, Jimmy Butler. While Butler is not even close to the same player he was before he went down with that knee injury, his ability to play defense is still intact. Even in his first game back from injury, (that in hindsight he probably came back to early from) Butler played against these same Rockets, and he helped force James Harden into nine turnovers.

Despite the fact that Butler was probably still hurt, he held Harden to 45 FanDuel points. In fact in their recent meetings with one another, Harden has had a lot of trouble going up against Butler. In their last four games against one another, Harden has shot only 37.3 percent from the floor, and he is averaging only 32.1 FanDuel points per game against Butler.

Of course, the case can be made to target Harden tonight, too. It's just a matter of how much you fear Butler's defense.

Evan Turner, SF, Boston Celtics

FanDuel Price: $5,900

Evan Turner hit landmine status in a big way back on Monday in the Celtics' last game. He had come into that one with four straight games of at least 28 FanDuel points, and in three of those four games, he had at least 33 FanDuel points. However, for those who jumped on the Turner train on Monday, you were disappointed, as he only had 12.3 FanDuel points in 32 minutes against the Clippers.

Now Turner faces a different kind of landmine potential tonight. Jae Crowder, who has missed the Celtics’ last eight games with an ankle injury, practiced with the team on Wednesday, and as long as there are no setbacks or excess swelling from that practice, Turner looks like he might take a backseat to Crowder tonight.

The Celtics are in a fight to get a home game to start the playoffs, and even if Crowder misses tonight, Turner has a tough small forward matchup against the Blazers. Portland is ranked third-best against small forwards this season, giving up only 0.72 FanDuel points per minute to the position. So, no matter who plays the most minutes at small forward for Boston tonight, you might want to lay off both of them -- especially Turner if Crowder returns.

Mason Plumlee, C, Portland Trail Blazers

FanDuel Price: $5,100

Mason Plumlee's minutes have been somewhat of a mystery over the last few games. After Meyers Leonard went down for the season, most thought that Plumlee would pick up some more minutes. However, since going off for 42.8 FanDuel points in 32 minutes against the Mavericks, Plumlee’s minutes have steadily declined. He went from 32 to 27, then to 25, 22 and 20 minutes in his last four games since his big performance on March 20 against Dallas.

It has been instead Ed Davis who has seen his minutes go up, and now he and Plumlee have virtually been sharing minutes at center over the last several games. While Plumlee has seen his time on the court decrease, Davis has seen his minutes in the mid 20s for the last four games.

Even though the Celtics do not present a huge challenge to centers, if Plumlee is splitting minutes with Davis, it might be wise to roster Davis at a cheaper price. In their last four games, Davis is averaging 29 FanDuel points in 23 minutes per game, while Plumlee is averaging only 22.2 FanDuel points, also in only 23 minutes per game.