This article is part of our FantasyAces NBA series.
RotoWire aims to help you win on Fantasy Aces, as we break down a few value plays for this weekend that can help you build your lineups. Injuries continue to create starting opportunities across the league, which in turn present us with some appealing value propositions to consider.
With a heaping selection of the elite in action over the weekend, we'll hone in on some of that value priced no higher than $4,600, leaving you plenty of room to fit in a few superstars.
Rodney Hood, UTA at BKN (Fri.), at WAS (Sat.) ($4550): Hood continues to be one of the Jazz's primary sources of offense while Derrick Favors remains sidelined. Coming of a stellar 44.0 fantasy points against the Knicks on Wednesday, Hood draws two of the most vulnerable defenses against two-guards over the weekend in the Nets and Wizards. Both teams have given up multiple prolific performances this season to opposing shooting guards, and Hood could well be firing away in both matchups.
Donald Sloan, BKN vs. UTA (Fri.), vs. OKC (Sun.) ($3700): Sloan has settled into a nice groove as the starting point guard for Brooklyn, yet remains priced well under $4K, enabling him to return some outstanding value recently, including 36.75, 24.00, 30.00 and 25.75 fantasy points over his last four, respectively. Encouragingly, his ball distribution has been very solid, handing out nine assists in a pair of those contests and 12 in another. He's also been a presence on the glass, with eight-and-nine-rebound games in that span. At his current price, and with his ability to supplement his serviceable scoring numbers with strong contributions in other categories, Sloan has the potential to bring back 8x-10x value if recent performances are any indication.
Derrick Rose, CHI at BOS (Fri.) at CLE (Sat.) ($4600): Rose's price has remained stagnant despite scoring between 21.25 and 34.25 fantasy points in nine of his last 10, with the sole dud in that span being a 13.25-tally against the Bucks' stalwart point guard defense. He's scored over 20 actual points in five of those games, and has played at least 30 minutes in seven of those contests. Even though his Friday opponent, the Celtics, sport the stingiest defense against point guards in the league, Rose had 18 points, seven rebounds and three assists against them on Jan. 7, a performance that netted a solid 29.25 fantasy points. On Saturday, Rose will be up against the weak spot of the Cavs' otherwise strong defense, as they've surrendered 21.5 actual points per game this season to the position, and 47.5 fantasy points per game over their last five.
Terrence Jones, HOU vs. MIL (Fri.), vs. DAL (Sun.) ($4000): With Dwight Howard already ruled out of Friday's game with the sprained ankle that forced his first-quarter exit Wednesday night, Jones figures to have ample opportunity to build on the recent momentum he'd already been generating in a reserve role. Clint Capela will likely slide into Howard's spot at the five, leaving Jones to likely man the four. He's tallied a pair of 22.50-fantasy point outings in his last two games in just 19 and 25 minutes, respectively. He also has games with 28.75, 35.00 and 27.00 fantasy points over his last 10, and draws two favorable matchups over the weekend. Milwaukee is tied with the Rockets for most fantasy points yielded this season to opposing fours, while the Mavericks have given up the most fantasy points to the position (51.2) over the last five games.
Marvin Williams, CHA at ORL (Fri.), at NYK (Sat.) ($3950): Williams' price remains nicely parked at under $4K, and he figures to be in for an increase in playing time Friday with Cody Zeller (shoulder) out. He did turn in a rare 11.25-fantasy point clunker against the Thunder, but had tallied between 20.75 and 29.25 fantasy points in six of the previous nine games. His matchup Friday should be favorable for that type of return, with Orlando ranking as the sixth-most generous unit against power forwards in fantasy points allowed this season. While he'll likely encounter a tougher road against Kristaps Porzingis on Saturday, the Knicks nevertheless have surrendered 43.2 fantasy points per game to opposing fours over their last 10, as well as double-digit rebounds per game (10.1) for the season.
Trey Lyles, UTA at BKN (Fri.), at WAS (Sat.) ($3550): Lyles' price has not budged over the last week, during which he's scored 28.75, 31.25, 24.00 and 19.25 fantasy points, respectively. All of those totals represent a stellar return on a near-minimum price, and Lyles figures to have the opportunity to build on those performances in two favorable matchups over the weekend. The Nets and Wizards both rank in the bottom half of the league in actual points surrendered to opposing fours, and Washington also holds that dubious distinction in the category of rebounds allowed to the position. With Lyles having played at least 25 minutes in his last nine games, including at least 30 on four of those occasions, he should have sufficient opportunity to return the minimum 6x value he's been generating in recent performances.
Jared Sullinger BOS vs. CHI (Fri.), at PHI (Sat.) ($4200): The Sullinger fantasy roller coaster is worth a ride this weekend, with fingers firmly crossed that we'll catch the upswings. Before only receiving nine minutes in his last game, Sullinger had scored 26.50, 28.25 and 28.75 fantasy points in the three prior games, respectively. He also scored 30.75 and 33.50 fantasy points in two other games over the last 10, and he draws a pair of favorable matchups over the weekend. The Bulls come in ranked in the bottom 10 of the league in both fantasy points and actual points allowed to power forwards, while the Sixers are the second and-third-worst units in those categories, respectively. While the minutes he receives in coach Brad Stevens' infamous rotations can certainly fluctuate, Sullinger should see a solid allotment in a competitive matchup against the Bulls, and in what could be a deceptively challenging game against the improving Sixers.
Frank Kaminsky, ($3800) and Spencer Hawes, CHA at ORL (Fri.), at NYK (Sat.) ($3,700): Hawes and Kaminsky should both find themselves with a nice boost in minutes now that Cody Zeller has been ruled out of Friday's game at a minimum with a shoulder strain. Hawes is currently slated to draw the start at the five, but Kaminsky could see a nice chunk of time off the bench at both power forward and center. The latter has particularly been hot lately, scoring between 20.25 and 30.50 fantasy points over his last six. Hawes has proven his mettle in past opportunities as well, and both players won't need to generate an inordinate amount of production to return solid value on their very cost-effective prices.
Meyers Leonard, POR vs. LAL (Sat.) (Price TBD): Leonard will very likely be priced in the upper-$3K range that he's been entrenched in lately and will have a favorable matchup against the Lakers' frontcourt Saturday. He has scored 18.00, 17.25, 20.75, 24.00 and 24.25 fantasy points over his last five, respectively, including multiple three-pointers in each. The playing time has also been largely consistent, as Meyers received between 22.00 and 26.00 minutes in four straight before his most recent outing. He provides a scoring element that the other two players he shares the power forward position with, Ed Davis and Noah Vonleh, can't quite match, helping him to carve out playing time. While the upside is somewhat capped by the timeshare, Leonard presents a good option if you're looking to go cheap at center and spend up elsewhere.