This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
Despite there being only five games on the schedule for Thursday's slate, there's still plenty of options to sort through at all levels of the price scale. The following list should provide a handful of players to consider building your lineup around:
Khris Middleton, MIL at GS ($7,800): Middleton has played extremely well of late, averaging 22.0 points, 5.2 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 2.4 steals and 1.0 block across his last five games, which is good enough for 42.9 FanDuel points. In addition to his strong play, Middleton is set to face off against a Warriors team that is still without All-Stars Steph Curry (knee) and Klay Thompson (thumb) in the backcourt. The Warriors also play at the fifth quickest pace in the NBA, which should afford Middleton an opportunity to up his overall numbers.
Goran Dragic, MIA vs. CHI ($6,700): The Bulls are still missing nearly half their roster and they've now given up the eighth most FanDuel points to point guards on the season, which results in a favorable matchup for Dragic. He could be getting his star center back in Hassan Whiteside as well, which would likely help draw defenses away from Dragic and give him some more room to work with. Admittedly, Dragic has struggled of late, but the intriguing matchup and likely addition of Hassan Whiteside should give him the opportunity to surpass the 30-FanDuel point mark. Other than Russell Westbrook ($11,200), there aren't a lot of sure things at the point guard position, so Dragic seems like a safer high-floor option.
Nick Young, GSW vs MIL ($4,500): This is another pick that I'm not overly confident with, but I just couldn't stay away due to his price. The Warriors are set to return both Kevin Durant and Draymond Green to the lineup, but both Klay Thompson (thumb) and Stephen Curry (knee) remain sidelined. For that reason, Young should continue to start at shooting guard and will likely push for 30-plus minutes. Over his last seven games, Young has averaged 15.6 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.1 assists across 34.9 minutes and that sort of workload is why I'm on board with Young. Both Durant and Green should also pull defenses away from Young and create more open looks for him.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL at GS ($11,200): There's only a handful of expensive players with just five games on the slate. Kevin Durant is fresh off a rib injury, while Russell Westbrook heads into a tougher matchup against the spurs defense. That pushes me towards using Antetokounmpo, who benefits with facing off against an injury-depleted Warriors team that likes to push the pace. The added possessions and desire to put up a strong effort against a playoff team should prompt Antetokounmpo to try and take this game over. For that reason, he's my top upper tier option for Thursday's slate.
Skal Labissiere, SAC vs. IND ($5,500): The Kings have essentially phased veteran Zach Randolph out of the rotation most nights, which has allowed Labissiere to log 30 minutes in each of his last three games. During that stretch, he's averaged 30.4 FanDuel points and if he reaches that number yet again, he'll be hitting value at a price of $5,500. The Pacers have also given up the 10th most FanDuel points to power forwards on the season, so the matchup isn't anything to be worried about.
Noah Vonleh, CHI at MIA ($4,600): The Bulls are set to be without Cristiano Felicio (back) and Lauri Markkanen (rest) in the frontcourt Thursday, so Vonleh should be pushing for minutes in the upper-20s or low-30s. There's a chance that he starts, though at this point, it's a coin flip between him and Bobby Portis. At a price of just $4,600, Vonleh has plenty of upside considering he's averaged a near double-double with 9.0 points and 9.3 rebounds over his last six games. As a result, he should have no trouble hitting value at a sub-$5,000 price.
Andre Drummond, DET vs. WAS ($9,400): The aren't many strong center options for Thursday's slate, so I'm going to do everything I can to pay up for Drummond. The Wizards have been one of the better teams defending the center position this season, but Drummond has proven that he can put up numbers against this team. In his last two matchups with the Wizards, Drummond has logged 58.2 and 56.9 FanDuel points, respectively, which would be hitting value at his current price. I'm betting on a repeat performance here, as there really aren't any other intriguing options to consider.
Pau Gasol, SAS vs. OKC ($4,600): As I mentioned in the Drummond blurb, I'm not a fan of the bulk of the centers for Thursday's slate. However, Gasol is a guy I could potentially see taking a risk on, especially if LaMarcus Aldridge ends up being held out with his knee injury. The last two times Gasol played more than 20 minutes, he posted 38.6 and 38.4 FanDuel points, respectively. That said, he's logged less than 20 minutes in four of the last six games, which is where the risk comes in. For me, using Gasol will be determined by whether Aldridge plays or not.