Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.

Thursday nights are usually pretty quiet in the NBA, and there really isn't much going on this week with only two games on the schedule. That doesn't leave us with a lot of options in DFS, but that doesn't mean you can't still end the night a winner. Here are some players to target and avoid as you create your entry.

GUARDS

James Harden, HOU at MIA ($56): The Rockets defeated the Wizards in convincing fashion Wednesday, marking their fifth straight victory. Harden was outstanding once again, scoring 56.1 Yahoo points. His ability to contribute in multiple areas gives him one of the highest upsides in DFS. He's by far the most expensive player at any position Thursday, but that's actually not a bad thing because the other players being priced so much lower actually helps free up your budget to include Harden in your entry.

Tyler Johnson, MIA vs. HOU ($10):Goran Dragic (knee) has missed time recently and will now be out at least 2 months after undergoing surgery Wednesday. The Heat are already thin at point guard, so expect Johnson (head) to see an expanded role moving forward. Johnson has battled his own injury issues, but he's listed as probable for this contest against the Rockets. Over the last 13 games in which he has logged at least 24 minutes, he's scored at least 21 Yahoo points each time.

Guard to Avoid

Eric Gordon, HOU at MIA ($14): Gordon had a nice offensive performance against the Wizards on Wednesday, scoring 16 points across 31 minutes. However, because of his lack of contributions in other areas, he scored just 21.9 Yahoo points. His inability to provide help outside of the scoring department has left him with 18.2 Yahoo points or fewer in six of his last eight games, making him an unappealing option even on a night with so few games.

FORWARDS

Luka Doncic, DAL at LAC ($34): Doncic is coming off of arguably the best game of his young career when he scored 23 points to go along with six rebounds, 12 assists and a steal Tuesday against the Nuggets. He also committed just one turnover, which is significant considering he is averaging 3.5 per game for the season. The Mavericks have wasted no time throwing their top pick into a prominent role, which has helped him score at least 30 Yahoo points in eight of his last nine games. This matchup between the Mavericks and Clippers could also be the highest scoring game of the night with both teams in the top-12 in the league in pace of play.

Derrick Jones Jr., MIA vs. HOU ($10): The Heat have had their fair share of injuries this year, which has opened up an opportunity for Jones to see extended playing time. He's made a case to remain in the rotation, averaging 9.4 points, nine rebounds, 2.2 steals and one block over his last five games. With at least 26.6 Yahoo points in each of those contests, Jones could be a great option in tournament play.

Forward to Avoid

Danilo Gallinari, LAC vs. DAL ($26): Gallinari has already played in more games this year than he did all of last season. Not only has he managed to stay healthy, but he's helped lead the Clippers' offense with 19.1 points and 2.4 three-pointers per game. The downside with him, though, is that he doesn't provide many assists or defensive stats. As a result, he's scored 29.5 Yahoo points or fewer in five of his last seven games.

CENTERS

DeAndre Jordan, DAL at LAC ($25): Jordan has certainly been an upgrade for the Mavericks at center, but his numbers are down this season with his new squad. His averages of 11 points and 13.8 rebounds per game aren't exactly terrible, but he's had a hard time providing consistent production of late. He's scored 28.5 Yahoo points or fewer in four of his last nine games, but he's also shown a tremendous ceiling by scoring at least 41.4 Yahoo points four times during that stretch. The Clippers allow the second-most Yahoo points per game (53.8) to opposing centers, so this could be one of Jordan's better performances. The first time he faced his former squad, he destroyed them for 53.1 Yahoo points.

Montrezl Harrell, LAC vs. DAL ($20): Harrell recently went through a brief slump, but he's righted the ship with at least 31.2 Yahoo points in back-to-back games. If there is one positive to be taken out of that previously poor stint, it's that his price has dropped significantly. Based on the pace at which this game will likely be played, Harrell is a great option to target.

Center to Avoid

Bam Adebayo, MIA vs. HOU ($18): Adebayo provided stellar production filling in for Hassan Whiteside while he was away from the team due to the birth of his child. However, with Whiteside back for the Heat's last two games, Adebayo scored 26.3 Yahoo points or fewer in both contests. Even if the Heat sometimes pull Whiteside late in games, the fact that he is back deals a significant blow to Adebayo's production potential. It's hard to justify paying this much for him when Harrell has a much more secure role and is only priced two dollars higher.

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. Mike Barner plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: mbarner, DraftKings: mbarner51.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mike Barner
Mike started covering fantasy sports in 2007, joining RotoWire in 2010. In 2018, he was a finalist for the FSWA Basketball Writer of the Year award. Mike also won the 2022-23 FSGA NBA Experts Champions league. In addition to RotoWire, Mike has written for Sportsline, Sports Illustrated, DK Live, RealTime Fantasy Sports, Lineup Lab and KFFL.com.
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