We have a 14-game slate of NBA action on Friday night, and there are plenty of big prizes up for grabs on DraftKings and FanDuel. The Five and Dime highlights several players that will likely be part of winning lineups, and one "sleeper" selection that could jettison a GPP lineup towards the top of the leaderboard.
The little "killer" makes for a perfect pairing with Russell Westbrook in tournaments tonight and a fine addition to any lineup at that reasonable price on DraftKings. He followed up a career-high 44-point performance in Memphis with a balanced performance in Indiana last night, before erupting for 14 more points to late to exceed value once again with 43.25 DK points (42.7 FD points) in another win. The Celtics (-4) are rolling right now and check in as favorites over a WCF contender that is completely centered around Westbrook and therefore can't contain opposing talented PGs, as they cough up the sixth-most FPPG (45.65) to the position this season.
With J.R. Smith (wrist) out over the next couple of months, the Cavs are forced to start UDFA DeAndre Liggins, but Shumpert is the clear beneficiary in this situation. His playing time was already beginning to rise with minutes of 32, 24, 22, 29 and 33 over 5 appearances before he had his most productive game from a usage standpoint with 10 points, 4 assists and 3 rebounds to exceed value in a win over the Bucks two nights ago. Shumpert doesn't have much upside in an offense that is dominated by LeBron James and Kyrie Irving even if Kevin Love (knee) remains out tonight, but he's a great source of salary relief at essentially the minimum price tag on FanDuel and you can't beat his matchup against a Nets team that ranks dead last in PPG (114.5) allowed this year.
The Nets almost shocked the world after leading the Warriors by double digits through 25 minutes of play last night, but of course they collapsed down the stretch and lost by double digits. Still, the improved play of young guys such as RHJ is worth noting as Brooklyn prepares to face the other main title contender this evening. He only played 24 minutes against the Dubs, but exceeded value in a second consecutive appearance with totals of 32 points, 12 rebounds and 5 STL/BLK during those games. Facing off with LeBron James is an intimidating proposition, but Hollis-Jefferson is far more athletic than teammate Bojan Bogdanovic or any other wing that Brooklyn might throw at the King, so his playing time should remain consistent if he can avoid foul trouble.
Forward-thinking DFSers used Harrell instead of 34-year-old Nene Hilario on Wednesday and were rewarded when Harrell entered the starting lineup on the second half of a B2B set. The Rockets might stick with that decision after Harrell produced (17 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 blocks) very well over 29 minutes and Nene was unable to top 18 minutes once again. Both big men will be needed in tonight's matchup against a physical Memphis defense, and Harrell has proved capable of manning the middle for the small-ball Rockets time and time again. His price tag should only rise as he fills the void left by Clint Capela's leg injury.
Since this is an article discussing great tournament plays, let's look at Gasol as a contrarian pivot on a night in which all eyes will be on the clash between Boogie Cousins and Kat in Minnesota, or Anthony Davis and Hassan Whiteside in New Orleans. Gasol proved to be the best overall play at his position two nights ago with 55 FD points (57.75 DK points) in Detroit and now he returns home to face a Rockets team that is working with a couple of replacement players at center without Clint Capela available. Montrezl Harrell is tough enough, but he stands just 6-foot-8 with limited reach and he'll probably be unable to bother the shot of a true 7-footer in Gasol. The streaking Rockets are producing the second-most PPG (113) at this point in the season and their high-scoring ways should force Gasol and running mate Mike Conley to increase their offensive output.
There is a hostile takeover happening at the PG position in Sacramento and seasonal fantasy basketball players should take note by running to the waiver wire to add Lawson. In DFS, the Kings new preferred PG is a great cheap play in a great matchup, as he should see heavy minutes against the Wolves 26th-ranked defense tonight. Lawson has played at least 22 minutes in 6 straight appearances with averages of 11.2 PPG and 4.2 APG during that span, while Kings starting PG Darren Collison is struggling badly and getting benched down the stretch in favor of his speedy teammate. It seems that Lawson is a better fit for this offense and he should be a better fit for a matchup against a young Wolves team that loves to get up and down the floor.