This article is part of our FantasyDraft NBA series.
Each week, RotoWire will provide value plays for your daily fantasy basketball lineups on FantasyDraft. Users have a salary cap of $100,000 to select a lineup comprised of three guards, three forwards/centers and two utility players. The scoring is as follows:
Point Scored – 1.0 point
3-Point Basket – 0.5 points
Assist – 1.5 points
Rebound – 1.25 points
Steal – 2.0 points
Block – 2.0 points
Turnover – minus-0.5 points
Double-Double – 1.5 points
Triple-Double – 3.0 points
FantasyDraft is running NBA contests each and every day. There are 50/50s, guaranteed tournaments and more available options in the lobby, so be sure to check it out. With contests at every entry fee level, there are a ton of options to choose from.
The target for each player to reach value is 2.5x the player's salary. If a player costs $10,000 against the cap, expected value is 25 fantasy points.
Michael Carter-Williams ($10,000)
Despite being benched for Jerry Bayless, MCW's value is just as high because of the injuries to the Bucks' guards. Bayless (ankle), Greivis Vasquez (ankle) and Tyler Ennis (shoulder) are all out, which leaves Carter-Williams as the only true point guard on the team. O.J. Mayo started the last game at point guard and is a good option, but Carter-Williams' value off the bench is worth monitoring as well. Without those three players, Carter-Williams' usage rate is at 20 percent, and he leads the team in assist rate (27.7) by a very large margin. The Bucks face the Trail Blazers, Clippers and Raptors this week.
Cody Zeller ($8,400)
With Al Jefferson (calf) set to miss the next few weeks, Zeller's minutes will greatly increase as the starter. He struggled in the first game, but that was against a Warriors team that forced the Hornets to run. In the Hornets' last game, Zeller had 17 points and eight rebounds en route to 34 fantasy points in 31 minutes against the Bulls. At his current price and expected minutes, he is worth a look. The next few games for the Hornets include the Pistons, Heat, Grizzlies and Celtics. Since each has a big (or two) to defend, expect Zeller to play a lot of minutes.
Alex Len ($7,900)
Len's value is directly reliant on Tyson Chandler's (hamstring) status, but with no timetable for Chandler to return it is looking more and more likely that Len will be the center for at least the next few games. The Suns have played four times in the last six days and Len averaged well over a fantasy point per minute, making him a very efficient option. His minutes are limited at times, but that is based on matchups. Considering the Suns face the Bulls, Magic, Trail Blazers and Wolves this week, he should play a lot of minutes against opposing bigs.
Jamal Crawford ($10,400)
As long as Chris Paul (rib) and/or J.J. Redick (ankle) miss time, Crawford will play a lot of minutes and take a ton of shots. In the last two games he has played 68 minutes, notching 48 points, seven rebounds and eight assists. In these two games, Crawford has a combined 69.75 fantasy points. Given his current price, that is a bargain for a guard on FantasyDraft. The Clippers face the Wolves, Bucks, Bulls and Nets this week, making three of four games a good matchup for Crawford.
Kemba Walker (illness), Doubtful
Walker is unlikely to play after missing Friday's shootaround. With Al Jefferson (calf) already out, adding Walker to this list does not bode well for the Hornets. That being said, Nicolas Batum will see a ton of shots as the top option on offense. Jeremy Lin and Jeremy Lamb also see bumps in value as well.
Marcin Gortat (personal), Doubtful
With Gortat missing the last few games and possibly a few more, the Wizards' frontcourt has a lot of minutes to go around. Nene Hilario (calf) and Drew Gooden (calf) are also doubtful, and Kris Humphries (ankle) is questionable. If Humphries plays, he is a fantastic option given the likely minutes he will see. Jared Dudley sees a boost as well, but he is very limited in terms of production.
John Wall (knee), Questionable
This is a major development given all the other Wizards injuries. If Wall is unable to go, Ramon Sessions is an excellent value and Bradley Beal's usage rate goes way up as well. In addition, Garrett Temple, Gary Neal and Kelly Oubre Jr. may see some run as well, but the main beneficiaries would be Sessions and Beal.
J.J. Barea (ankle), Doubtful
Barea missing time has opened up a lot of minutes for Raymond Felton, who has been excellent in his absence. With the Mavericks easing Chandler Parsons into the lineup, Felton continues to be a big minutes (and production) player in Dallas, so be sure to consider Felton as long as he continues to be cheap.
Harrison Barnes (ankle), Out
Barnes is out for the next week or so with an ankle injury, so Brandon Rush will remain a starter for the Warriors. He does not have much value in DFS, but Draymond Green's value gets a bump along with Klay Thomson's as their usage rate increases. Andre Iguodala should continue see a boost in minutes as well.
Willie Cauley-Stein (finger), Out
With Cauley-Stein set to miss the next month, the Kings have a few players who will see boosts in minutes and value. Omri Casspi has been starting, and is a solid value play at his current price. Kosta Koufos has also played more as well and is a good option if he starts.