NBA DFS Breakdown: Can Julius Randle Stay Hot?
NBA DFS Breakdown: Can Julius Randle Stay Hot?

This article is part of our NBA DFS Breakdown series.

Wednesday's marquee matchup is at 10:30 ET, with the Raptors in Golden State to take on the Warriors. There is also a pair of matchups with some implications in Western Conference standings, as the Thunder take on the Pelicans while the Trail Blazers, on the second night of a back-to-back, travel to Memphis to play the Grizzlies.

Let's take a look at some important lines to be aware of:

Highest over/under: Thunder at Pelicans (233.0)
Lowest over/under: Trail Blazers at Grizzlies (203.0)
Largest spread: Hawks at Mavericks (-9.0)
Smallest spread: Knicks (-1.0) at Cavaliers

Now we'll get into a breakdown of each game on the slate. I'll be using Fanduel's pricing and scoring to discuss:

Knicks at Cavaliers

Over/Under: 214.0.
Spread: Knicks -1.0
Implied totals:
Cash Plays: Collin Sexton ($5,300)
GPP Plays: Larry Nance ($5,800); Collin Sexton ($5,300); Noah Vonleh ($5,100); Kevin Knox ($4,900)
Notable Injuries
Knicks: Trey Burke (Knee) - Out; Allonzo Trier (Hamstring) - Out
Cavaliers: David Nwaba (Knee) - Questionable; J.R. Smith (Coach's Decision) - Out; Tristan Thompson (foot) - Out; Kevin Love (toe) - Out

This is a frustrating matchup, and probably one to avoid entirely, if you're looking to join a cash contest. Neither of these squads have shown consistency all season. Both teams have yet to crack double-digit wins, and the Cavaliers are throwing out a starting lineup reminiscent of "The Process" 76ers. Collin Sexton is your closest thing to a cash option, as he's reached 20 fantasy points in 10 of his past 11 contests and has seen at least 32 minutes in each of the past four games.

Sexton can also function as a GPP play given his upside, but Larry Nance is in an especially enticing spot with Tristan Thompson out for an extended period of time. Noah Vonleh and Kevin Knox both have ceilings of 40-plus fantasy points, but their workloads and performance both vary. The pricing on other guys from either team is too tight for me to seriously consider, especially with 10 other games on the slate.

Bucks at Pacers

Over/Under: 218.5
Spread: Bucks -2.5
Cash Plays: Giannis Antetokounmpo ($12,200); Malcolm Brogdon ($5,600); Brook Lopez ($5,200)
GPP Plays: Eric Bledsoe ($7,500); Myles Turner ($7,200); Khris Middleton ($6,800); Darren Collison ($6,500); Domantas Sabonis ($6,500); Bojan Bogdanovic ($5,200)
Notable Injuries
Bucks: None
Pacers: Victor Oladipo (Knee) - Doubtful;

The Greek Freak, Malcolm Brogdon and Brook Lopez have consistent for the Bucks lately, warranting consideration in cash games. Brogdon (25-plus fantasy points in each of the past nine games) has been a stable presence in the Bucks backcourt while Khris Middleton is in a cold stretch and Bledsoe's production can be streaky. Lopez remains a focal point of Milwaukee's gameplan and has reached 20 fantasy points in seven straight games.

Bledsoe and Middleton are GPP options for Milwaukee, as they've both demonstrated upside of 40 fantasy points. The remainder of the value comes by way of the Pacers, who have been adjusting to Victor Oladipo's 11-game absence. With Oladipo out, Turner is averaging 38.1 fantasy points; Collison is averaging 32.3 FP; Sabonis is averaging 33.1 FP; Bogdanovic is averaging 31.5 FP.

Nets at 76ers

Over/Under: 223.5
Spread: 76ers -7.0
Cash Plays: Joel Embiid ($10,700); Ben Simmons ($9,200); Spencer Dinwiddie ($6,000)
GPP Plays: Joel Embiid ($10,700); Ben Simmons ($9,200); D'Angelo Russell ($7,100); J.J. Redick ($5,500); Furkan Korkmaz ($4,200)
Notable Injuries
Nets: Caris LeVert (Foot) - Out;
76ers: Jimmy Butler (Groin) - Doubtful; Markelle Fultz (Shoulder) - Out

Jimmy Butler's presumed absence is the main storyline for this contest, and it thrusts Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid into the forefront. The 76ers lost depth when trading for Butler, so Philly may have to lean more on its remaining stars. For that reason, the pair also make for GPP options.

For the Sixers, aside from Embiid and Simmons, J.J. Redick is someone we've seen post 30-plus fantasy points on four occasions, and Furkan Korkmaz dropped 30.9 FP in 25 minutes Monday against the Pistons and could start in Butler's absence. For the Nets, Spencer Dinwiddie is one of the top sixth men in the league and should be considered for cash, while D'Angelo Russell's potential against a team devoid of it's best backcourt defender could make things interesting.

Celtics at Wizards

Over/Under: 220.0
Spread: Celtics -3.5
Cash Plays: Jayson Tatum ($6,700); Bradley Beal ($8,700); Kyrie Irving ($8,500); Markieff Morris ($5,700)
GPP Plays: Kyrie Irving ($8,500); Marcus Morris ($5,700); Jaylen Brown ($5,500); Kelly Oubre ($5,500); Austin Rivers ($4,100)
Notable Injuries
Celtics: Al Horford (Kneecap) - Out; Gordon Hayward (Illness) - Out; Aron Baynes (Ankle) - Questionable; Guerschon Yabusele (Ankle) -
Wizards: John Wall (Knee) - Probable; Otto Porter (knee) - Questionable; Dwight Howard (Lower body) - Out

In games that Al Horford has missed, Jaylen Brown (35.1 FP), Kyrie Irving (35.1 FP) and Marcus Morris (31.9) have been the most productive. That trio, plus Jayson Tatum, have also found success when Gordon Hayward hasn't played.

The sample size is smaller for Porter, who has missed just two games compared to Horford's four and Hayward's three, but there don't seem to be as many beneficiaries on Washington. The main outlier is Austin Rivers, who is averaging 26.5 FP when Porter is out. Kelly Oubre is always a GPP option when a wing player misses time for the Wizards.

Pistons at Hornets

Over/Under: 218.5
Spread: Hornets -5.5
Cash Plays: Blake Griffin ($9,100); Kemba Walker ($8,900); Cody Zeller ($5,400)
GPP Plays: Andre Drummond ($9,500); Langston Galloway ($3,500); Jeremy Lamb ($6,600); Reggie Jackson ($5,800)
Notable Injuries
Pistons: Reggie Bullock (Ankle) - Questionable; Stanley Johnson (Knee) - Questionable; Glenn Robinson (Ankle) - Out; Ish Smith (Groin) - Out
Hornets: None

Blake Griffin seems to be the Pistons only source of consistent play, and he's always a cash game option with a floor around 40 fantasy points. Kemba Walker functions in that same way for the Hornets. Cody Zeller has been good for about 20-25 FP all season if you need a lower-cost option.

Like Griffin being a cash option every night, the same can be said for Andre Drummond in GPP settings. Foul trouble can kill his night, but he's posted 60-plus fantasy points four times this season. With Reggie Bullock, Glenn Robinson and Stanley Johnson potentially missing Wednesday's matchup, Langston Galloway is a viable minimum-priced option (22.9 FP with Bullock out), while Reggie Jackson has been a GPP flier all year but may need to be relied upon more now for scoring.

Thunder at Pelicans

Over/Under: 233.0
Spread: Thunder -2.0
Cash Plays: Anthony Davis ($12,400); Russell Westbrook ($11,500); Jrue Holiday ($9,100); Julius Randle ($8,800); Paul George ($9,100); Steven Adams ($6,700); Dennis Schroder ($5,800)
GPP Plays: Jrue Holiday ($9,100); Julius Randle ($8,800); Tim Frazier ($5,200)
Notable Injuries
Thunder: Andre Roberson (Kneecap) - Out
Pelicans: Nikola Mirotic (Ankle) - Out; Elfrid Payton (Finger) - Out; E'Twaun Moore (Lower leg) - Questionable

Both of these teams are cash game staples, as their respective players have had clear roles all season. The main wrinkle Wednesday is the absence of Nikola Mirotic, which brings Julius Randle into the fold as a cash option, rather than exclusively a GPP consideration. When Mirotic has been sidelined, Randle averages 48.7 FP and Jrue Holiday averages 59.8 FP.

While I like Randle and Holiday as options, it's important to note the Thunder have the league's best defense. The pair will probably have high ownership, so pivoting off the contest could pay dividends for tournaments on the chance they struggle against OKC.

Trail Blazers at Grizzlies

Over/Under: 203.0
Spread: Grizzlies -3.0
Cash Plays: Damian Lillard ($9,700); Al-Farouq Aminu ($6,000)
GPP Plays: Shelvin Mack ($3,800); Kyle Anderson ($5,500)
Notable Injuries
Trail Blazers: None
Grizzlies: Mike Conley (Hamstring) - Questionable; Chandler Parsons (Knee) - Doubtful; Dillon Brooks (Knee) - Out

This is a bad situation for the Trail Blazers. Portland will be on the second night of a back-to-back, where it lost to Houston 111-104 on Tuesday. Notably, Lillard, McCollum and Aminu each played at least 37 minutes, with the pair of guards chucking up 46 combined shots. Furthermore, the Grizzlies have the sixth-best defense and play at the slowest pace in the league. I still view Lillard and Aminu as cash game options, but I'd also be looking elsewhere first.

Mike Conley's potential absence could open up GPP options for the Grizzlies, which could be amplified given Portland's tired legs. It would be the first absence of the season for Conley, so we're not sure how the rotation will change. But Shelvin Mack is a strong candidate to move into the starting five, and Kyle Anderson handles the ball quite a bit for Memphis and makes for an interesting pivot from Mack.

Hawks at Mavericks

Over/Under: 224.0
Spread: -9.0
Cash Plays: John Collins ($8,000); Luka Doncic ($7,200)
GPP Plays: John Collins ($8,000); DeAndre Jordan ($7,000); Kent Bazemore ($6,600); Dewayne Dedmon ($5,600); Jalen Brunson ($4,500)
Notable Injuries
Hawks: Jeremy Lin (Back) - Out; Alex Poythress (Ankle) - Out; Omari Spellman (Hip) - Out; Miles Plumlee (knee) - Out; Taurean Prince (Ankle) - Out
Mavericks: Dennis Smith (Wrist) - Out; Dirk Nowitzki (Ankle) - Questionable; Maxi Kleber (Toe) - Probable

John Collins has been tearing it up with at least 40 fantasy points in each of the past three games, including an outburst of 53.9 FP against the Nuggets. I expect his price to rise moving forward, so I'd be looking to roster him here while there's still value in both cash and GPPs. Luka Doncic churns out performances of 30-35 FP on almost literally a nightly basis (13 games in that range) and is a cash game lock.

The myriad of injuries for the Hawks mainly opens up value for Kent Bazemore (38.0 FP with Taurean Price out) and Dewayne Dedmon (27.7 FP with Omari Spellman out). For Dallas, Jalen Brunson has been a nice surprise with Dennis Smith out, posting at least 25 FP in each of the past three games.

Heat at Jazz

Over/Under: 210.5
Spread: Jazz -7.0
Cash Plays: Rudy Gobert ($8,700); Bam Adebayo ($6,500); Justise Winslow ($5,800); Kelly Olynyk ($5,300); Derrick Favors ($5,300)
GPP Plays: Donovan Mitchell ($7,800); Bam Adebayo ($6,500); Justise Winslow ($5,800); Dwyane Wade ($6,100); Kelly Olynyk ($5,300)
Notable Injuries
Heat: Goran Dragic (Knee) - Out; Hassan Whiteside (Personal) - Out; Dion Waiters (Ankle) - Out
Jazz: None

Hassan Whiteside's absence has unleashed the trio of Bam Adebayo, Kelly Olynyk and Justise Winslow for not only GPPs, but also cash games at this point. When Whiteside is out, Adebayo averages 38.0 FP, Olynyk averages 33.4 FP and Winslow posts 45.8 FP. With Goran Dragic out, Dwyane Wade also becomes a GPP option. On the Utah side of things, Rudy Gobert and Derrick Favors are priced as cash options, though do have fair upside for GPPs.

Donovan Mitchell is the main GPP option for the Jazz. He's heavily reliant on his shooting and defense, as he doesn't do much passing or rebounding. He has nine games with at least 40 FP (28.6 points, 2.3 steals), but also seven games under 25 FP (10.3 points, 1.1 steals).

Regardless of how you're approaching this matchup, it's important to consider the pace, as this game has just a 209.0 over/under.

Timberwolves at Kings

Over/Under: 228.0
Spread: Timberwolves -3.5
Cash Plays: Bogdan Bogdanovic ($6,200); Buddy Hield ($6,100)
GPP Plays: Karl-Anthony Towns ($9,700); De'Aaron Fox ($7,800); Bogdan Bogdanovic ($6,200); Buddy Hield ($6,100); Andrew Wiggins ($6,100); Derrick Rose ($5,900)
Notable Injuries
Timberwolves: Robert Covington (Knee) - Probable
Kings: None

You know the season is going unexpectedly when Bogdan Bogdanovic (32.6 FP over the past six games) and Buddy Hield (29.0 FP over the past five) are the cash game options in this matchup. Most other players on either team seem to be priced more for their upside.

Karl-Anthony Towns has upside of 60 fantasy points, but has nine games of fewer than 35 FP thrown in. De'Aaron Fox has a similar profile as a DFS option, just with a lower ceiling and floor. Andrew Wiggins is averaging 33.4 FP over the past four games but has one of the lowest floors of any mid-range DFS player. Derrick Rose has been up-and-down since the return of Jeff Teague.

Raptors at Warriors

Over/Under: 228.0
Spread: Warriors -7.0
Cash Plays: Kevin Durant ($10,200); Stephen Curry ($9,400); Klay Thompson ($6,800); Draymond Green ($6,700); Pascal Siakam ($6,600); Serge Ibaka ($6,400);
GPP Plays: Kyle Lowry ($7,600); Pascal Siakam ($6,600); Serge Ibaka ($6,400); Jonas Valanciunas ($5,300)
Notable Injuries
Raptors: Kawhi Leonard (Hip) - Questionable; Norman Powell (Shoulder) - Out
Warriors: Andre Iguodala (Hip) - Out; DeMarcus Cousins (Achilles) - Out; Damian Jones (Pectoral) - Out

The potential absence of Kawhi Leonard, who missed Tuesday's game against the Clippers, is the main storyline for this contest. In games Leonard has missed, Kyle Lowry averages 53.1 fantasy points, making him a very strong tournament option. Serge Ibaka (39.6 FP with Leonard out) and Pascal Siakam (34.7 FP with Leonard out) would also be fair choices for GPPs. That trio could pay dividends in cash games as well.

The usual suspects – Curry, Durant, Thompson and Green – remain cash options for the Warriors. Durant becomes intriguing as a GPP option if Leonard is unable to play. As is usually the case, however, the four Warriors eat each other's upsides.

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.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Alex Barutha
Alex writes primarily about the NBA for RotoWire. His work has appeared on CBS Sports, Bleacher Report and other sites. He enjoys both year-long and daily fantasy. Vince Carter and Alex both first dunked during their respective sophomore years of high school.
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