This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.
Wednesday's nine-game NBA slate brings plenty of drama. One game that stands out features the Bulls hosting the Nets in a battle between two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference. Luka Doncic will also take the floor at Madison Square Garden when the Knicks host the Mavericks.
The Hornets, who are making a push for a playoff spot, will take on the Sixers, who are only two games ahead of them in the Eastern Conference. Charlotte will be shorthanded again, though, with Kelly Oubre Jr. in the health and safety protocols.
Let's dig into the matchups and highlight some players to consider for your Yahoo lineups, as well as a few to potentially avoid.
Dejounte Murray, SA vs. HOU ($44): There has been no stopping Murray, who has scored at least 42.3 Yahoo points in eight straight games. As if his role wasn't already large enough, the Spurs need more production from him right now with Derrick White and Keldon Johnson in the health and safety protocols. That makes him an ideal option against a Rockets team that has played at the second-fastest pace and has the worst defensive rating in the league.
Malik Monk, LAL at SAC ($18): Monk finally had an off night, scoring seven points on 3-for-13 shooting from the field against the Grizzlies on Sunday. Prior to that, he had averaged 21.9 points and shot 56.3 percent from the field across seven games. That included a matchup against these same Kings in which he scored 39.8 Yahoo points. The Kings have the fifth-worst defensive rating, which could set up Monk for a bounce-back performance.
Guard to Avoid
Kevin Porter Jr., HOU at SA ($21): Porter is shooting 32.1 percent from the field over his last six games, which left him with an average of just 8.7 points during that stretch. He's shooting 35.7 percent for the season, so his recent issues should come as no surprise. Given that his salary doesn't come at a significant discount, it might be best to keep him out of your entries.
LeBron James, LAL at SAC ($55): James has put the Lakers on his back since Anthony Davis (knee) went down. Across the last 11 games, he's averaging 34.2 points, 9.6 rebounds, 6.3 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.5 blocks. With the Kings' struggles on the defensive end, James enters this matchup with an incredibly high floor.
Maxi Kleber, DAL at NY ($11): Kristaps Porzingis (COVID-19) has already been ruled, setting him up to miss his sixth straight game. Across the last five games with him out, Kleber started and averaged 29 minutes. He used his added paying time to score at least 20.0 Yahoo points each game. Going back even further, he has scored at least that many Yahoo points in seven straight games.
Forward to Avoid
Al Horford, BOS at IND ($22): Horford has been quiet lately, averaging 5.0 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.2 blocks over his last six games. The more concerning stat is that he only averaged 27 minutes during that stretch, compared to his season average of 30 minutes. There are a lot of viable options in this salary range during such a busy slate, making it difficult to justify taking a chance on Horford.
Joel Embiid, PHI vs. CHA ($51): This matchup is about as good as it gets for Embiid. The Hornets have the third-worst defensive rating and have allowed the most rebounds per game in the league. The two previous times that he's faced them this season, he scored 71.5 and 49.6 Yahoo points, respectively.
Onyeka Okongwu, ATL vs. MIA ($12): Clint Capela (ankle) is listed as doubtful for the Hawks after sitting out Sunday's matchup against the Clippers. Okongwu started in his absence, recording nine points, 10 rebounds and two assists across 38 minutes. The Hawks will need his size to battle with Omer Yurtseven, so look for Okongwu to spend a lot of time on the floor.
Center to Avoid
Daniel Gafford, WAS vs. ORL ($23): Gafford already had a difficult time playing heavy minutes with Montrezl Harrell and Rui Hachimura in the fold. Now, Thomas Bryant (knee) is expected to make his season debut in this game. He likely will likely be eased back in slowly, but he's yet another capable big man who could steal minutes from Gafford.