This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
As is often the case on Sundays, a split schedule leaves us with a modestly sized Main slate in the evening. Nevertheless, there's some value to be had over the four games with a bit of due diligence. Without further ado, let's break down multiple cost-saving options that could enable you to fit the likes of James Harden, Stephen Curry and Kyrie Irving into your lineups:
Alex Caruso, LAL vs. SAC ($5,000): Caruso has recently become a relevant member of the backcourt rotation, playing 22 more or more minutes in seven of the last eight games. He outpaced starter Rajon Rondo in playing time in the Lakers' last game versus the Nets and has scored 24.5 to 35.3 fantasy points in four of the last five contests. The matchup sets up well for him Sunday, considering the Kings are allowing the third-most fantasy points per game to point guards (42.2), along with the second-most points (21.2) and a bottom-10 offensive efficiency rating (25.7) to the position.
Patty Mills, SA at BOS ($4,100): Mills' production has been a bit of a rollercoaster of late, but the veteran always carries plenty of upside due to his long-distance prowess. Most recently, Mills has scored 21.2 and 28.4 fantasy points in two of his last four games, respectively. He continues to typically see at least 20 minutes off the bench in the majority of contests, and despite the tough matchup on paper, it's worth noting the Celtics have been much more vulnerable to a signature aspect of Mills' game, the three-point shot, lately. Boston comes into Sunday's game allowing a 39.1 percent success rate from distance over the last three, a sharp spike from the 34.3 percent they allow on the season.
Marcus Smart, BOS vs. SA ($5,000): Smart's ability to stuff the stat sheet usually carries him to a solid fantasy line even when his inconsistent shot is running cold. He's scored at least 20 fantasy points in 11 of the last 12 games thanks in part to his work across multiple categories. Sunday, he faces a Spurs squad ranked in the bottom half of the league in fantasy points (39.8), offensive efficiency rating (22.8) and three-point percentage (38.0) allowed to twos. The last figure is particularly noteworthy, considering Smart is shooting a career-high 36.5 percent from behind the arc this season.
Eric Gordon, HOU at NO ($4,700): Gordon has been mired in a bit of a fantasy-point slump of late, bringing his price down to a very appealing level. The veteran has been under 20 fantasy points in two straight, but he continues to hold down the starting small forward job. Gordon has averaged 26.4 fantasy points in three prior games against the Pelicans this season, and New Orleans allows the sixth-most fantasy points per game to small forwards (38.8), along with the second-highest offensive efficiency rating (23.5) on the campaign. It's also worth noting Gordon has been a markedly better shooter on the road, draining four percent more of his attempts (42.4, compared to 38.4 at home) and displaying a near-six-point improvement in three-point accuracy (37.6 percent, compared to 31.8 percent at home).
Rudy Gay, SA at BOS ($6,100): Gay continues to shuttle between the starting five and bench, but he typically sees sufficient minutes to offer a strong return when on the second unit. The veteran has eclipsed 30 fantasy points in five of the last eight games, accomplishing the feat in under 30 minutes in three of those contests. The Celtics have shown some vulnerability defending one of Gay's positions, small forward, as well, as they've allowed 37.2 fantasy points per game to threes, including 55.4 over the last five contests. And, like his teammate Mills, Gay is also capable of exploiting Boston's recent vulnerability to three-point shooting – he's draining a career-high 41.8 percent of his tries from distance.
Kenrich Williams, NO vs. HOU ($5,300): Williams continues to often find a way to offer solid returns on his typically modest price. The rookie has scored 33.3 and 25.3 fantasy points in his last two games, respectively. He'd also scored over 25 fantasy points in three other games over the last 10 and tagged this same Rockets squad for 31 fantasy points the last time he saw them Jan. 29. Houston checks in about middle of the pack for the season in fantasy points allowed per game to small forwards (36.8), a number that's spiked to 47.0 per contest over the last five.
P.J. Tucker, HOU at NO ($4,500): Tucker has the rather unique ability to get to 20 fantasy points at minimum even when going scoreless, a feat he's accomplished twice in the last five games alone. When he doesn't put up a goose egg in the points column he has the potential to be even better, as he's tallied 23 and 26.6 fantasy points in two other games during that sample. The Pelicans have allowed Tucker 27.3 and 23.8 fantasy points the last two times he's seen them, and they're yielding the fourth-most fantasy points per game to power forwards for the season (43.7), including the third-most over the last five games (60.8).
Cheick Diallo, NO vs. HOU ($4,400): With Anthony Davis' minutes limited for the remainder of the season, Diallo should continue filling a solid second-unit role that affords him minutes in the high teens at minimum. He's produced 20.5 to 30.0 fantasy points in his last three with allotments of 18 to 27 minutes in those contests, and 22 five games ago over just 14 minutes. Diallo is remaining involved on the offensive end to an extent during his time on the floor (seven shot attempts in each of his last three games) and has been steady on the boards, bringing in at least six rebounds in five of the last seven contests.
JaVale McGee, LAL vs. SAC ($6,300): McGee had a game for the ages versus the Nets on Friday, racking up an eye-popping 75 fantasy points on the strength of a 33-point, 20-rebound double-double that also included six blocks. While that's not what we're expecting Sunday and his price did see a notable boost as a result of the performance, the veteran is still appealing in a matchup versus the Kings. McGee had also scored 23.8 to 47.6 fantasy points in the five games prior to Friday's outburst, and the Kings allow a bottom-10 figure in fantasy points per game to centers (37.0). They're also yielding the fourth-most points in the paint per game (51.5), while McGee logs 86.3 percent of his points in that part of the floor.