Yahoo DFS Basketball: Saturday Picks

Yahoo DFS Basketball: Saturday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.

Can we talk about how crazy that trade deadline was? Sometimes, all of the chatter around the deadline can be overwhelming and silly, but this deadline did not disappoint one bit. Numerous teams went ahead and blew everything up, with Orlando looking like an NCAA team now. The good news is that we don't have to deal with them yet, but the beneficiaries from their rebuild will make some appearances in this article. With that in mind, let's get into it! 

Guards

De'Aaron Fox, SAC vs. CLE ($40)

Fox is quickly becoming one of my favorite players in the NBA, and using the term quick is an understatement on how speedy this point guard can be. That elite speed has led to some monster production, scoring at least 28 Yahoo points in 32-straight games. That floor is attractive on its own, but we absolutely love that he's scored at least 49 fantasy points in three-straight. The best part of this play might be the matchup, with Cleveland sitting 22nd in defensive efficiency while allowing Dennis Schroder to go nuts on Friday. Dennis the Menace is a good player, but he's not as sly at Fox. 

Eric Bledsoe, NOR vs. DAL ($11)

Bledsoe has been terrible for a few weeks now, but a gem on Friday shows just how good he can be. He finished that game with 16 points, four rebounds, nine assists and two steals en route to 39 Yahoo points. That sort of total is impossible to overlook from an $11 player, and this is still a guy who flirted with a $25 tag this time last season. The increase in production is really no surprise when you see that Lonzo Ball is sidelined, forcing Bledsoe into more minutes, shots and ball-handling duties. The matchup is the icing on the cake, with Dallas sitting 23rd in defensive efficiency. 

Guard to Avoid

Zach LaVine, CHI at SAN ($36)

LaVine has earned every bit of this lofty price tag, but it's eventually going to drop with Chicago adding so much at the deadline. Nikola Vucevic will come in and swallow up about 20 shots and a 25 percent usage rate, taking away some of the workload from LaVine. That was already slightly concerning with LaVine living off of his absurd 30 percent usage rate, and it's even more alarming when you see that Zach has failed to crack 38 fantasy points in each of his last four games. We also don't like that San Antonio ranks Top-10 in total defense, especially with LaVine entering this matchup with a questionable tag. 

Forwards

Jerami Grant, DET at WAS ($29)

Grant's numbers have been a bit down lately, but it doesn't justify this sub-$30 tag. He has played at a $40 level for most of the season, and we can't overlook him in a matchup like this. Washington currently ranks 28th in defensive efficiency and first in pace while surrendering the second-most fantasy points to opposing SFs. That's scary with Grant already averaging 37 Yahoo points per game for the season, which looks like the floor in a matchup like this. Getting nearly 40 fantasy points from a $29 player is a godsend, and his role might increase even more with Delon Wright and Blake Griffin both out of the picture now too. 

Juancho Hernangomez, MIN vs. HOU ($10)

This is a GPP play because of Juancho's volatile role, but if the last few games are any indication, the T'Wolves are ready to give this guy the starting PF position. While he hasn't started recently, Hernangomez has finished each of the last two games, combining for 61 Yahoo points across 63 minutes of play. That's a truly ridiculous total from a minimum-priced player, and we have to believe this role will remain with Minnesota in full-on rebuild mode. Houston is a fantastic matchup, too, with the Rockets ranked 24th in total defense. They also tend to play small-ball, and that means more minutes for Juancho!

Forward to Avoid

Kyle Anderson, MEM at UTH ($19)

Anderson has taken a step back to allow Ja Morant and Jonas Valanciunas to feast. He's actually scored 25 or fewer fantasy points in nine of his last 11 games, which is the minimum you'd need from a $19 player. That alone is worrisome, but this matchup makes Anderson absolutely terrifying. Utah currently ranks fourth in defensive efficiency and fifth in points allowed. One of those games happened to come against Utah, with Slo-Mo scoring just 23.5 Yahoo points. 

Centers

Robert Williams, BOS at OKC ($22)

This might be a crazy statement, but Williams has the talent to be a $40 player. We say that because he has one of the best per-minute averages in the NBA, providing 24.7 Yahoo points in 17 minutes a night this year. That equates to 1.45 fantasy points per minute, one of the greatest rates I've ever seen. To put it into perspective, that'd be a 43.6-point average if he played 30 minutes a night. While he hasn't come close to 30 minutes for most of the season, he might with Daniel Theis in Chicago and Tristan Thompson sitting at home. That certainly appeared to be the case on Friday, with Williams dropping 48 Yahoo points across 27 minutes of play. We obviously don't mind that Oklahoma City surrenders the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing centers as well.  

Jakob Poeltl, SAN vs. CHI ($17)

Poeltl has been way too good to remain this cheap. Since taking over starting center duties for LaMarcus Aldridge, Jakob is averaging 28 Yahoo points per game. That's really all you can hope for from a $17 player, especially when you see that his minutes have been somewhat limited in that span too. What we love here is that he faces a huge Chicago team that's going to force him into big minutes. They've been downright terrible against opposing bigs recently, too, surrendering the third-most fantasy points to them for the season. 

Center to Avoid

Thaddeus Young, CHI at SAN ($23)

Young honestly deserves more credit for the season he's put together, but it's going to be tough for him to live up to this $23 now. He was already battling a bunch of bodies for minutes, and that's going to be even tougher with Nikola Vucevic and Daniel Theis on the roster. Those guys will surely limit Young to a max of 25 minutes a night, with 15-20 seeming much more likely. He's proven that he can produce in that limited amount of playing time, but we can't trust it from a $23 player who's played 21 or fewer minutes in two of his last three games. Not to mention, San Antonio is a Top-10 defense in nearly every metric. 

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. Joel Bartilotta plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: Joelbartilotta Yahoo: Joelbartilotta.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joel Bartilotta
Joel has 15 years of Fantasy experience, and can recall riding a young Daunte Culpepper to a championship in the 2003-04 season in his inaugural fantasy year. He covers NBA, NFL, daily fantasy, EPL, and MLB for RotoWire.
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