RotoWire Partners

NBA Daily Games Cheat Sheet: Tuesday

Jerry Donabedian

Jerry Donabedian

Jerry Donabedian writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire.

TEAM ANALYSIS

Defenses to Avoid
Brooklyn Nets at Miami Heat: Brooklyn is 3-0 against Miami this season, but two of the victories came by a one-point margin and the other game went into overtime. None of the three contests were particularly high scoring, and Tuesday's game easily projects as the lowest-scoring matchup (O/U 190) on a six-game slate. Both squads are good offensively, but the Heat rank 27th in pace (93.46) and the Nets are 25th (93.74). This game could be low scoring, even if both teams hit their shots. While efficient offense can offset the impact that a slow-paced game has on point totals, it also means fewer rebounds up for grabs. Not that many players on either team match this description, but this is a nightmare matchup for guys that rely on rebounds for a good chunk of their fantasy value.

Offenses to Use
Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Lakers: The Lakers have become the proverbial whipping boy of the NBA daily games cheatsheet, and rightfully so. At this point in the season, there's no need to re-hash just how awful they are on defense while playing at a fast pace. However, as bad as they are, the purple & gold has at least been decent enough offensively to keep the majority of its home games within a reasonable margin. Sure, there's still some blowout potential here, but not as much as you might think, particularly with Dwight Howard and Patrick Beverley sidelined. The Lakers rank second in pace (100.87) while the Rockets are fifth (98.56), and that should outweigh any concerns regarding a blowout. With an over/under of 226.5, this game projects as one of the higher-scoring matchups of the season, not to mention the day.

Teams on a Back-to-Back Set
First game of a back-to-back: Miami Heat, Brooklyn Nets, Minnesota Timberwolves, Detroit Pistons, Atlanta Hawks, Oklahoma City Thunder, Sacramento Kings, Houston Rockets
Second game of a back-to-back: N/A

DraftKings.com DAILY PLAYER RECOMMENDATIONS

If you've never played on DraftKings.com before, we recommend reading our Daily Fantasy Basketball 101: How to Win on DraftKings strategy article.

Qualify for this Friday's $100K MegaCrossover for as low as $2. Sign up now!


Point Guard
Cory Joseph, SA (at MIN), PG, $3,000: Joseph starts in place of an injured Tony Parker, while Patty Mills ($3,800) could see some extra minutes off the bench. Though Mills has the larger role in San Antonio's regular rotation, Joseph is cheaper and seems to benefit more when Parker sits. With Parker only able to play nine minutes against the Grizzlies on Sunday, Mills just saw his typical 20 minutes, while Joseph saw a boost up to 21 after totaling just 19 in the previous three games combined. The last time Parker missed a game March 24 against Philadelphia Joseph got 35 minutes and Mills just 23. Given the low prices for both players and the friendly matchup, it's entirely reasonable to play both Mills and Joseph.

Shooting Guard
Reggie Jackson, OKC (at SAC), PG/SG, ($5,300): Russell Westbrook is possibly sitting out to rest, but I actually like Jackson regardless of the superstar's status. Sure, it would be ideal for Jackson's fantasy value if Westbrook sits, but it isn't as if Jackson lacks for minutes when Russell plays. Jackson has logged 30, 36, and 33 minutes respectively in three games since returning from a minor back injury, with the 36-minute outing the only one in which Westbrook didn't play. Even if we only expected him to log his season-long average of 28.5 minutes Tuesday, Jackson would be a solid value at $5300. As is, he's a good bet to top 30 minutes, with a shot at 35-40 should Westbrook sit.

Other suggestions: Kyle Korver ($4,500), Shaun Livingston ($4,400)

Small Forward
James Harden, HOU (at LAL), SG/SF, ($10,500): Not only does Harden draw a great matchup, but he's coming off back-to-back games with 60 fantasy points on DraftKings, and he's topped 40 fantasy points in each of his last nine games. The Rockets haven't shown any signs of packing it in until the playoffs, as the team seemingly wants to lock down the No. 4 seed as early as possible to ensure that the final few days of the season can be used for rest, if need be. Concurrently, Harden has topped the 40-minute mark in four of his last five games, averaging 31 points, 6.8 dimes, 5.4 boards, and 2.2 steals over that stretch. Perhaps most impressively, he made at least 10 free throws in all five games.

Power Forward

Andre Drummond, DET (at ATL), PF/C, ($7,900): Much like the young center himself, Drummond's price has rebounded with authority, following a hot two-game stretch. A price-hike after a mini-hot streak would normally raise red flags, but Drummond's price is merely returning to its prior level from earlier this season. The UCONN product barely missed a 20-20 in both of his last two games, and he draws a friendly matchup Tuesday against an Atlanta team that ranks 26th in rebounding rate (47.9 percent) and 12th in pace (97.0)

Center
Omer Asik, HOU (at LAL), PF/C, ($5,500): Asik's price has come up significantly over the last week, yet he's still one of the best values you'll find. He's logged at least 32 minutes and recorded double-digit rebounds in each of his last five games, most recently exploding for 18 points and 23 boards Sunday against Denver. With the Rockets drawing a fast-paced team that doesn't play any defense, I can't imagine setting a lineup without Asik on Tuesday. Not that I'd shy away from Asik if they were playing, but it can't hurt that Pau Gasol and Chris Kaman are both out for the Lakers, leaving Jordan Hill, Robert Sacre, and Ryan Kelly to man the power forward and center spots.

INJURY REPORT

Out
Tony Parker (back) will not play Tuesday or Thursday.
Chase Budinger (ankle) is done for the season.
Kevin Martin (foot) will not play Tuesday.
Shabazz Muhammad (knee) has a sprained MCL and is out for the season.
Nikola Pekovic (ankle) is out through Tuesday, at the very least.
Kevin Garnett will miss Tuesday's game to rest.
Chris Kaman (calf) will not play Tuesday.
Xavier Henry (knee/wrist) is out for the season.
Pau Gasol (vertigo) is out Tuesday and may be shut down for the season.
Kent Bazemore (foot) is out for the season due to a torn tendon in his foot.

Game-Time Decision
Will Bynum (foot) missed the last two games.
Lou Williams (hammy) missed Sunday's game with a sore hamstring.
Chris Andersen (back, knee) did not play Sunday.
Dwyane Wade (hamstring, achilles) did not play Sunday and remains day-to-day.
Greg Oden (back) has missed six consecutive games.
Aron Baynes (ribs) has missed four straight games.
Kevin Love (back) is expected to play Tuesday, after missing Saturday's game.
Marvin Williams (knee) is bothered by soreness and will likely be a game-time call.
Thabo Sefolosha (calf) still hasn't played since Feb. 28 but is nearing a return.
Isaiah Thomas (quad) may not return this season but hasn't been ruled out.
Rudy Gay (personal) may miss a game this week to attend the birth of his child.
Russell Westbrook (knee) may miss Tuesday's game to rest.
Kendrick Perkins (groin) may also miss Tuesday's game to rest.
Patrick Beverley (knee) hopes to be back before the playoff but still hasn't returned.
Dwight Howard (ankle) hasn't played since March 27 but remains day-to-day.
Nick Young bumped his knee Sunday, but he should be fine to play Tuesday.
Steve Nash (back) expects to play Tuesday.
Jordan Farmar (groin) is considered questionable Tuesday, but he said that he will play.