This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.
Thursday doesn't bring a ton of action in the NBA with only four games on the schedule. The good news is that there are still a couple of exciting games with the Celtics hosting the Sixers and the Blazers taking on the Nuggets. We also have a chance to win some money on Yahoo, so here are some players to target, as well as a few to avoid, while working your way through the options.
Luka Doncic, DAL at DET ($56): Doncic's last game against the Kings was a perfect example of just how high his floor is. He was only 3-for-12 from behind the arc, but he contributed enough across the board to finish with 41.4 Yahoo points. Limited playing time in a blowout is likely the only thing that could slow him down, but don't hesitate to deploy him in this matchup.
Dejounte Murray, SA vs. CLE ($18): While Murray has been relegated to coming off the bench for the Spurs, he's been playing limited minutes no matter what role he has been in out of the gate. However, he logged a season-high 32 minutes in his last game Friday against the Kings, which helped propel him to 31.9 Yahoo points. Afterwards, Spurs' coach Gregg Popovich seemed to indicate that Murray is no longer on a minutes limit, which could be huge for him in this matchup against the struggling Cavaliers.
Guard to Avoid
Josh Richardson, PHI at BOS ($17): The Sixers welcomed Richardson back against the Nuggets on Tuesday after he had missed six straight games with a hamstring injury. He logged just 19 minutes in his return and it's possible he could be on somewhat of a minutes limit here, as well. Add in a tough matchup on the road against a great defensive team in the Celtics and it's difficult to justify adding Richardson to your entry.
DeMar DeRozan, SA vs. CLE ($34): DeRozan has quietly been very consistent for a struggling Spurs team, scoring at least 30.8 Yahoo points in 13 straight games. He topped 40 Yahoo points six times during that stretch and should continue to be an excellent source of production given his 26.4 percent usage rate and ability to contribute in multiple areas. He's even shooting 50.8 percent from the field, which would be the highest mark of his career.
Will Barton, DEN vs. POR ($23): Barton tried to carry the Nuggets past the Sixers on Tuesday, scoring 26 of the team's 92 points. Their offense has largely been in a rut lately, so it might not be a coincidence that Barton was only averaging 10.4 points across their previous five games heading into Tuesday. Now facing a Blazers team that has allowed the eighth-most points per game in the league, the offensive minded Barton has the potential to provide one of his better scoring performances.
Forward to Avoid
Kristaps Porzingis, DAL at DET ($29): Porzingis has never been overly efficient, but he's been really bad this season, shooting 39.8 percent from the field and 70.2 percent from the charity stripe. He's been particularly quiet lately, scoring 29.7 Yahoo points or fewer in five straight games. On a night where there are some other high-priced players who have favorable matchups and are playing well, paying this much for Porzingis given his current struggles might not be wise.
Hassan Whiteside, POR at DEN ($33): Unlike Porzingis, Whiteside is on a roll at the moment, scoring at least 40.7 Yahoo points in six of his last seven games. The move to Portland has provided him with a tremendous boost in value, leaving him with averages of 15.4 points, 12.5 rebounds and 2.4 blocks a night. As good as the Nuggets have been defensively, they have allowed the 11th-most Yahoo points per game to opposing centers. With Whiteside basically being a walking double-double, he's one of the safer big men up front to target who also won't totally destroy your budget.
Jakob Poeltl, SA vs. CLE ($17): Since there are only four games to pick from, viable cheap center options are few and far between. If you are looking to take a chance on one in tournament play, Poeltl is worth a look. He's scored at least 24.2 Yahoo points in six of his last seven games and could see added playing time if this game gets out of hang against a Cavaliers team that is seemingly defeated by double-digits on a nightly basis.
Center to Avoid
Larry Nance Jr., CLE at SA ($16): Nance has played well when either Kevin Love or Tristan Thompson has been sidelined. However, both players are healthy right now, which has contributed to Nance scoring 21.2 Yahoo points or fewer in four straight games. Even at this price, it's difficult to be excited about his prospects of providing value.