by Ray Kuhn
Daily fantasy basketball is a roller coaster ride. You have to have a short memory but also learn from both your successes and failures. If you are new to this feature then welcome aboard, and if not, then welcome back.
We ease back into the work week with a five game slate tonight. The good thing, from both lineup construction and as a fan, is that four of the games have early tips. Only the Spurs and Clippers tip off after 8 pm, and San Antonio has been good about announcing ahead of time who will be on the bench.
Let’s take a look at six players (two at each position) you should be looking at as you set your lineup for tonight. All of information referenced is based on game play at Fantasy Score (USA Today’s DFS engine). If you do play on other sites in the industry the same logic and thought process is applicable.
- Jeff Teague, G, Atlanta Hawks, $5,200. Of course there are more exciting names on the list, but Teague comes in at two thirds of the price. Yes, there is one dud on Teague’s record so far this season, 15 fantasy points against the Spurs, but he is still averaging 36.45 points per game. Point guards are always on the top of my list to target because the ball is always in their hands, on Teague’s 18.2 points and 8.2 assists per game speak to that. Teague and the Hawks take on the Knicks again Monday night against whom the point guard put up 31 FP’s against on Saturday. New York often has difficulty defending point guards, so I would look for Teague to have another good game.
- Jrue Holiday, G, New Orleans Pelicans, $5,200. I’m sticking with the same theme with Holiday as I did with Teague. There was doubt about him playing Saturday night, but he did against the Spurs putting up 42.25 FP’s. Holiday has shown to be a solid contributor this season, and while I wouldn’t expect an earth shattering performance, he won’t disappoint either. But more importantly, I’m still not sold on Kyrie Irving as Cleveland is in flux, Derrick Rose’s ankles are in question, and Chris Paul faces the Spurs.
- Anthony Davis, F, New Orleans Pelicans, $9,200. We are getting good value at guard, and at this point it is hard for me not to use Davis. Davis is averaging 55.3 FP’s per game, and shows no signs of slowing down. In cash games or 50/50’s you can build a roster without Davis, but in tournaments he simply cannot be ignored. And that is especially true on a night with just five games.
- Shawn Merion, F, Cleveland Cavaliers, $2,800. Merion is not an exciting option, but he is cheap. And of maybe more importance, Merion is now elevated into the starting lineup as David Blatt works to find a winning combination. We can’t expect Merion to score, but he will contribute in all the other categories, which do happen to be more valuable from a fantasy perspective.
- Greg Monroe, C. Detroit Pistons, $5,000. Monroe is one of those players I’m going to keep on using until his price rises. At 37 FP’s per game, he is the best performing center so far this season that is playing tonight, and he appears to be safely implanted in the starting lineup.
- Boris Diaw, C, San Antonio Spurs, $3,000. It is a rough night looking for centers, and Diaw is far from an exciting option. I would put him Merion’s category as far as production, but he will score a little more. Diaw has put between 16.25 and 24.75 FP’s each game so far this season, and he will likely continue to benefit with Tiago Splitter still sidelined.
Below is a lineup I am using tonight:
Guards: Jeff Teague, Jrue Holiday, Tyreke Evans
Forwards: Anthony Davis, Shawn Merion, Carmelo Anthony
Center: Greg Monroe
Flex: LeBron James