PG - Yogi Ferrell, Dallas Mavericks @ Houston Rockets
The Dallas Mavericks are in dire straits at the moment in terms of their guard situation. Seth Curry and Dennis Smith Jr. - their first-choice starting backcourt, are both out injured, while veteran Devin Harris is on a leave of absence with the death of his brother.
That leaves J. J. Barea and Yogi Ferrell as two of the team’s three reliable guards left in the rotation. While Barea started last night against the Sacramento Kings and has a slightly higher upside, Ferrell still got more minutes and is the safer play overall against Houston.
Ferrell has played at least 30 minutes in each of Dallas’ first two games and could pick up good numbers going up against the Houston's fast-paced style. He’s also the more likely to play even if the Mavs get blown out by the Rockets, which should allow him to pad his stats a bit more.
SG - Eric Gordon, Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks
Speaking of the Rockets-Mavs, Eric Gordon could also be set for a big-time fantasy performance in that game. The reigning Sixth Man of the Year is having a terrific start to the season, averaging 24.5 points. And with Chris Paul out for at least a month, Gordon will get to start and see big minutes alongside James Harden for the foreseeable future.
As for the Dallas game, Wes Matthews will likely be tasked to guard Harden, leaving either Barea or Ferrell on Gordon. That won’t end well either way for Dallas, but could result in another huge scoring performance for Gordon.
SF - Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Portland Trail Blazers
The Greek Freak has started the season like a house on fire. Through two games, the Bucks superstar is averaging 35.5 points, 10.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists and three steals, all while shooting 63 percent from the floor. Those are prime LeBron James numbers right there.
Giannis might be the surest 60 points in NBA DFS at the moment, a safer bet than Russell Westbrook now that the Thunder are a super team. Antetokounmpo's matchup against the Portland Trail Blazers isn’t incredibly lopsided, but with the way he’s been playing early on in the season, the 22-year-old looks pretty matchup-proof and should still be a good play.
PF - Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers vs. Phoenix Suns
Through two games, the Phoenix Suns have given up a whopping 256 points. Yikes. That’s not good. The Suns' defense just plain sucks at the moment, particularly their frontcourt defense. T. J. Warren isn’t any better at defending power forwards than he is defending small forwards, while sophomores Marquese Chriss and Dragan Bender also remain highly questionable on that end of the floor.
Having said all of that, Blake Griffin should just eat the Suns for breakfast. Griffin looked outstanding in the Clippers’ opener against the Lakers, going for 29 points, 12 boards, three assists, two steals, and three 3-pointers. There’s a possibility Blake doesn’t play quite as many minutes if LA just blows the doors off of Phoenix, but he could still put up an outstanding line before he sits for an entire quarter.
C - Jonas Valanciunas, Toronto Raptors vs. Philadelphia 76ers
It’s the first back-to-back for the Philadelphia 76ers, which means Joel Embiid isn’t going to play for the second half of it against the Raptors on Saturday. And with Richaun Holmes out injured, the Sixers’ other options are Amir Johnson and Jahlil Okafor. Neither of those is particularly appealing, but they are positive news for Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas.
Valanciunas had an eye-opening season opener against the Chicago Bulls as he put up 23 points and 15 rebounds. The Lithuanian never quite seems to string a lot of those types of games together since the Raptors’ offense is so guard-centric, but with Embiid out, this is a perfect opportunity for him to stand out in consecutive games.
Did we miss someone who could blow up for DFS tonight? Share in the comments below!