This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.
If you're a regular reader of my column, hopefully, you took some of my advice and cashed as I did on Wednesday. Our Kemba Walker pick was right on point, and despite some average nights from Leonard and Westbrook, we took the Giannis pivot and rode with it all the way to fistfuls of cash across the board. Thursday we need to focus on cash games once again, as our small four-game slate creates a GPP scenario where ties might limit your profitability. I'll throw a few single entry games in there, but I won't tackle the massive fields with only eight teams playing.
PHI (-1.5) @ BOS, O/U: 210
SA (-11.5) vs. CLE, O/U: 219.5
DAL (-5.5) @ DET, O/U: 219.5
DEN (-6) vs. POR, O/U: 214
With Boston and Cleveland on back-to-backs and teams like Dallas, Detroit and San Antonio coming off of multiple days of rest, I think we should factor fatigue into our equation somewhat and focus on the fresher teams. The result is some emphasis on the Spurs against Cleveland and Philly against the Celtics,
INJURY SITUATIONS TO MONITOR
Gordon Hayward (head) QUESTIONABLE
Hayward was hit in the face in the fourth quarter of last night's game and didn't return. Due to the back-to-back game, I wouldn't be surprised if they gave Hayward a rest. With Marcus Smart (eye) also probably out, I'd throw some cash Jaylen Brown's ($6,600) way.
Paul Millsap (foot) QUESTIONABLE
You know you're on a light slate when Hassan Whiteside is your fifth-most expensive player.
Luka Doncic, DAL ($11,400) @ DET
He's our only guy above 10k tonight, and if he goes off you're immediately behind the pace if you don't play him. Unfortunately, rostering him isn't that simple. He's on a three-game run where he hasn't come anywhere close to reaching value, and that concerns me. I'm going to keep his exposure low, maybe 20 percent or so, and look to build only two of 10 with him (or 20 of 100 for you MME guys out there).
Joel Embiid, PHI ($9,500) @ BOS
Embiid likes the marquee games and this matchup is essentially a playoff preview. He didn't reach value in his last game against the Celtics, but I think his ceiling is doable tonight. I'd be very happy with 50 DKFP here.
Kemba Walker, BOS ($7,700) vs. PHI
Do you go back to Walker after his 44-point night? I'll leave that up to you, but I'm going to put him up there again in a situation where he may be without both Smart and Hayward. He'll be forced to make it rain on his own, and after one of his worst games of the season coming at the hands of Boston, he'll be amped to rewrite that narrative.
EXPECTED CHALK AND OTHER TARGETS
Ben Simmons, PHI ($7,600) @ BOS
If Simmons replicates his first game against Boston, he'd come in at almost 6x value. Getting to 45 DKFP is certainly doable. Brett Brown has told Simmons that he expects to see at least one three-pointer per game from the usually shy long-range shooter, so you can be sure Simmons is trying to warm that shot up in practice. Could that result in more production? Don't count on it, but the Simmons-Embiid connection should still be in full swing tonight.
DeMar DeRozan, SA ($7,300) vs. CLE
If you stay off Doncic, you'll do a lot of lineup building around this price range and I like the Spurs in this spot against a fatigued team that played a hard-fought close game against the Rockets on Wednesday. DeRozan hasn't made my list recently, but with Cleveland's 29th ranked defense, some lanes should open up for him in what could be a huge night of production.
Tobias Harris, PHI ($6,900) @ BOS
Harris is coming off of two straight 40-plus DKFP games and he put up 44 DKFP against the Celtics in their last matchup. That kind of production comes in at about 6x value so I'm all over Harris at this price. While I don't think Philly is a stack scenario, I've already endorsed three of them.
Will Barton, DEN ($6,300) vs. POR
Barton was really feeling it in his last game, as he rained on Philly with a 26-point night. He hit value in his last game against Portland, so I'll go to the well with Barton in hopes that he'll be confident in his record against a Portland team that struggles at the wing position.
Also consider: Derrick Rose, DET ($5,700)
Tim Hardaway Jr. DAL ($5,200) @ DET
I like Hardaway as a tournament candidate who can easily ramp up the production on any given night. While he won't outdo Doncic, his upside can push him past Porzingis' output with ease. He's coming off a superb game against the Kings and will look to build on that streak tonight.
Patty Mills, SA ($4,100) vs. CLE
If you're a believer in the Spurs tonight, you're looking for Mills to exceed more than 20 DKFP and beast value at this price. He's certainly seeing enough usage to get that done, ad he's averaged well over 30 minutes of court time over his past two games. You put your faith in Gregg Popovich's hands on this one.
Langston Galloway, DET ($3,700) vs. DAL
Galloway is seeing time with the second unit for the Pistons and while his usage can be all over the place, he's settled into a groove over the past few games where he's seeing close to 30 minutes per game. With Bruce Brown struggling, and Luke Kennard a bit too expensive in relation to his output, I like Galloway as a value candidate in a Detroit backcourt where no one seems to want the reins with Reggie Jackson out.