PG - Kemba Walker, Charlotte Hornets @ Denver Nuggets
After back-to-back monster scoring performances against the Atlanta Hawks and Indiana Pacers, Walker finally cooled off a bit with a mere 18 points on 6-of-19 shooting against the Phoenix Suns yesterday. Still, Walker’s averaging 30.0 points, 5.8 assists, and 4.6 3-pointers over his last five games. Don’t let Walker’s off-night scare you off too much tonight, especially with another incredibly advantageous matchup against the Denver Nuggets on tap.
Also consider: Ricky Rubio, Utah Jazz @ New Orleans Pelicans
Rubio’s price continues to sky-rocket after another monstrous performance against the Spurs, where he dropped a career-high 34 points on 11-of-14 shooting with nine assists. Rubio has now topped 40 points in FanDuel scoring in three-straight games, and has hit 5x fantasy value in eight of his last nine. Rubio’s unreal shooting could finally fall back down to earth any game now, but his matchup against a porous Pelicans defense seems too good to pass up.
SG - Gary Harris, Denver Nuggets vs Charlotte Hornets
Harris is hardly the sexiest pick fantasy-wise due to his relatively low ceiling. However, his ceiling should be raised just that little bit higher as he faces the Hornets on the second night of a back-to-back. The Hornets have simply been unable to stop opposing shooting guards of late. Suns rookie Josh Jackson burned them for 23 points on 10-of-14 shooting last night, Victor Oladipo hit them for 35 points the game before, and the Hawks duo of Kent Bazemore and Marco Belinelli combined for 47 points on 14-of-23 shooting.
Also consider: Nicolas Batum, Charlotte Hornets @ Denver Nuggets
Batum is admittedly a risk given that he’ll be on the second night of a back-to-back and the Nuggets don’t really give up that many fantasy points to opposing shooting guards. But he’s just been playing so well lately and his price remains relatively cheap. He had 22 points, four rebounds, and five assists last night against the Suns, the seventh time in the last 11 games he’s exceeded 5x value. Despite the risk, it might just be worth rolling the dice on him one more time.
SF - Josh Richardson, Miami Heat vs Orlando Magic
Richardson had a terrific night last time out against the Detroit Pistons as he went for 19 points, six assists, three steals, and three 3-pointers. He’s been a bit up-and-down over the last couple of weeks, but he showed once again just what he’s capable of fantasy-wise. Richardson will have another nice matchup to work with as he takes on the Orlando Magic. He topped 30 fantasy points in FanDuel in two meetings against the Magic in December and should be favored to do so again given Orlando’s recent struggles.
Also consider: Joe Ingles, Utah Jazz @ New Orleans Pelicans
Ingles has had a habit of popping up for some big fantasy performances recently. He’s had three games of 26 or more fantasy points per FanDuel in his last seven. Given his hot shooting of late, it shouldn’t be too much of a stretch to see him do the same against a Pelicans team with such unreliable perimeter defense. In two previous meetings against the Pelicans, Ingles is averaging 10.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 6.0 assists.
PF - Nikola Mirotic, New Orleans Pelicans vs Utah Jazz
Mirotic had an unbelievable debut for the Pelicans as he went off for 18 points, 12 rebounds, and four steals in 35 minutes against the Timberwolves. He should expect that type of playing time moving forward in New Orleans, which will be great for him fantasy-wise. Mirotic will now look to make a similar splash in his home debut against the Jazz, whom he burned for a season-high 29 points, nine rebounds, and two steals in December.
Also consider: Dwight Powell, Dallas Mavericks @ Los Angeles Clippers
Powell delivered quite a performance in just his second game in the Mavs’ starting lineup. He dropped 17 points and nine rebounds on the Sacramento Kings for 31 fantasy points. Powell, who remains relatively cheap, could provide more great value with a similarly strong showing against a Clippers frontcourt duo of Tobias Harris and Danilo Gallinari which isn’t particularly effective defensively.
C - Kelly Olynyk, Miami Heat vs Orlando Magic
Olynyk has been killing it for the Heat in recent games. Over his last 11 games, he’s topped 5x fantasy value eight times. He was especially productive the other night against the Pistons as he dropped 19 points, eight rebounds, and five assists in 40 minutes with Hassan Whiteside ill. Whiteside remains questionable to return to the lineup against the Magic, which could once again spell good news for Olynyk fantasy-wise. In two meetings against the Magic in December, Olynyk averaged 16 points, nine rebounds, 2.5 assists, two steals, and 1.5 3-pointers.
Also consider: Willie Cauley-Stein, Sacramento Kings vs Chicago Bulls
Cauley-Stein has been pretty solid in his first two games back from a knee injury. He’s averaging 13.5 points, seven rebounds, two steals, and a block. His upside should creep that little bit higher tonight against the Bulls, who have had a lot of problems against opposing big men. In his first meeting with Chicago this season, WCS racked up 10 points, three rebounds, five assists, and four blocks.
Have some thoughts about tonight’s picks? Let us know in the comments below!