DraftKings NBA: Thursday Cheat Sheet
DraftKings NBA: Thursday Cheat Sheet

This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.

Guards:

Dennis Smith Jr., NYK at ATL ($6,500): Smith has been given the keys to the Knicks' car, as he's truly running the show for the worst organization in basketball. In fact, Smith is averaging 33 minutes and 18 shots a game across his last four outings while leading the team with a 28 percent usage rate. His fantasy numbers back up that usage, as he's averaging 32 DK points across his last 10 fixtures. That huge role is enough incentive to use him, but this matchup is the icing on the cake. The Hawks play at the fastest pace in the league while allowing the most fantasy points to opposing point guards.

Evan Fournier, ORL vs. CHA ($5,500): A mid-season swoon lowered Fournier's price to this enticing number, but he's been much better over recent weeks, averaging 27.5 DraftKings points across his last nine games. What's just as encouraging is that he's averaging 34.3 minutes and 13.6 shots across his last 14 games, as it's clear he's still one of the go-to players on this offense. That role should allow him to succeed once again against a 19th-ranked Hornets defense.

Nicolas Batum, CHA at ORL ($4,500): Batum is too good to be priced at $4,500, as he's been a $6,000 player throughout his career. His horrible start is what's kept his price so cheap, but Batum is averaging 26 DK points across his last 23 games. That alone is 6X value, and he has a 17-point floor in that span too. Batum has shown he can exploit the Magic as well, as he's averaging 27 DraftKings points in two games against them this season.

Forwards:

Paul George, OKC at NOP ($10,700): I was so tempted to recommend Anthony Davis at $9,000 because this is the lowest price I've ever seen him at and the upside he presents is hard to overlook, but we'll go with George as a much safer option. Not only does George have at least 46 DK points in 16 straight games, but he's also averaging 56 fantasy points per game in that span. That ridiculous form is enough incentive to use him, but this matchup is too tasty to pass up. In fact, New Orleans has a 29th OPRK against small forwards, and George is averaging 53.3 DraftKings points in three outings against them this season.

Jonathan Isaac, ORL vs. CHA ($5,800): Isaac's early-season form lowered his price to this intriguing number, as it should be above $6,000 with his recent play. Over his last 12 games, Isaac has scored at least 27 fantasy points in 11 of those fixtures while averaging 33 DK points per game in that span. That's all you can ask for from a player south of $6,000 as he faces a Charlotte defense who allows the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing small forwards.

Kevin Knox, NYK at ATL ($4,900): Knox simply has too big of a role to be priced below $5,000. Over his last 15 games, Knox is averaging 32 minutes and 14 shots per game while posting a 23 percent usage rate. That's a pretty similar role to players who are in the $7,000-range, and Knox is averaging 22 DK points per game in that span. It's the matchup that really makes him intriguing though, with Atlanta ranking first in pace, last in total defense and 27th in OPRK against small forwards.

Centers:

Nikola Vucevic, ORL vs. CHA ($10,000): Vucevic has too much consistency to pass up on a short slate like this, as he feels like a guaranteed 40 points in your lineup. Vucevic has at least 42 DK points in 15 of his last 16 games while averaging 47 fantasy points per game in that span. That sort of reliability pairs up beautifully with this matchup, considering Charlotte allows the fifth-most fantasy points to opposing centers.

DeAndre Jordan, NYK at ATL ($5,900): Jordan's role is inconsistent with the Knicks, but he's got a ton of upside to be priced at $5,900. His 34.1 DK points per game average for the season proves that point, as that's approaching 6X value. That comes from a guy who has at least 29 fantasy points in five of his last six games, and he should thrive in a matchup like this. Not only do the Hawks rank dead-last in total defense, they've also allowed Jordan to average 34 DK points in two games against them this season. That's no surprise when you consider that Atlanta plays at the fastest pace, and that makes Jordan a near guarantee for a double-double through pure athleticism.

Cody Zeller, CHA at ORL ($4,800): Zeller has been stellar since his return from injury, as he's got at least 24 DK points in seven straight games while averaging 30 fantasy points per game in that span. The 35 minutes played in the most recent game is what's most promising though, as that matched a season-high. Anyone getting 35 minutes against Orlando's frontcourt is worth a shot, especially when you consider the Magic allow the 10th-most fantasy points to opposing centers. All these factors would make one believe that Zeller is a $6,000 player, but we get quite the salary-saver here at $4,800.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Joel Bartilotta plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Joelbartilotta Yahoo: Joelbartilotta.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joel Bartilotta
Joel has 15 years of Fantasy experience, and can recall riding a young Daunte Culpepper to a championship in the 2003-04 season in his inaugural fantasy year. He covers NBA, NFL, daily fantasy, EPL, MLB, and CBB for RotoWire.
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