Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.

As far as Thursday's go, this will be a busy one with eight games on the schedule in the NBA. While there are some tanking teams in action, most of the games on the docket at least have playoff seeding implications. Let's dive in and examine some players to target and avoid for your Yahoo entry.

GUARDS

De'Aaron Fox, SAC at NO ($32): This is one of the top games to target with both the Kings and the Pelicans inside the top-three in the league in pace of play. Fox is playing well entering this contest having scored at least 40 Yahoo points in four of his last five games. His scoring numbers have been a bit inconsistent lately, but he's helped make up for that with assists and defensive stats. Look for him to thrive in this matchup.

D.J. Augustin, ORL at DET ($17): This game has major playoff implications. Both teams are separated by half a game in the standings and while they are both currently in the playoffs, the Heat and Hornets are right behind them. The Magic have won six straight and Augustin has been a huge reason for their success, scoring at least 29.1 Yahoo points in five of those contests. He's averaged 34.2 Yahoo points across three previous meetings with the Pistons this season and is a very appealing option at this price.

Guard to Avoid

Terrence Ross, ORL at DET ($18): Ross has gone cold from the field, shooting just 38 percent over his last 10 games. Since most of his contributions come in the scoring column, it's no surprise that he scored 21.6 Yahoo points or fewer six times during that stretch. With so many other viable options Thursday, it's hard to justify taking a chance on Ross based on his recent shooting woes.

FORWARDS

Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL vs. LAC ($54): This is a matchup between two teams who are hot down the stretch. The Bucks have one seven of their last 10 games while the Clippers have won nine of their last 10 contests. Both teams are also inside the top-eight in the league in pace of play, so this has the potential to be a high-scoring contest. After scoring at least 53.1 Yahoo points in four of his last five contests, Giannis has one of the highest floors of any player at any position for this slate.

Pat Connaughton, MIL vs. LAC ($14): As well as the Bucks are playing, they have been bitten by the injury bug lately. Malcolm Brogdon (foot), Nikola Mirotic (thumb) and Tony Snell (ankle) are all sidelined right now, which has forced Connaughton into an expanded role. Coming off of 38.4 Yahoo points against the Rockets on Tuesday, Connaughton has the potential to once again provide significant value.

Forward to Avoid

Will Barton, DEN at HOU ($19): While the Bucks have injury issues, the Nuggets are the healthiest that they have been in a while. The only player with a questionable tag Thursday is Malik Beasley (personal). Barton is locked into the starting lineup, but his production has started to dwindle with so many quality options around him. He's scored 24.1 Yahoo points or fewer in nine of his last 12 games, so it might be best to spend your money elsewhere.

CENTERS

Joel Embiid, PHI vs. BKN ($50): This is a dream matchup. Both teams have something left to play for with the Nets trying to stay in the playoffs and the Sixers trying to hold off the Pacers for the third seed in the East. Embiid has the second-highest usage rate (33 percent) in the league and the Nets allow the third-most Yahoo points per game (42.9) to opposing centers. Across three previous meetings with the Nets this season, Embiid has averaged 27 points, 14.7 rebounds and 4.7 assists. This should be fun.

Christian Wood, NO vs. SAC ($14): Wood logged just eight minutes in his debut with the Pelicans on Sunday, but was asked to play a more prominent role in Tuesday's matchup against the Hawks with Anthony Davis (back) out. To say he played well is a massive understatement since he finished with 60.3 Yahoo points over 32 minutes. Jahlil Okafor only played eight minutes and Cheick Diallo logged just 19 minutes in that contest, so there's a chance Wood has passed them on the depth chart already. You'll need to temper your expectations with Davis expected to return, but Wood could still provide value at this cheap price.

Center to Avoid

Tristan Thompson, CLE at SA ($15): Thompson made his return to the starting five Tuesday against the Celtics, but only logged 18 minutes. He hasn't played more than 19 minutes in any of his four games since returning from injury and the Cavaliers aren't likely to push him with nothing left to play for. The Spurs allow the fewest Yahoo points per game (35.1) to opposing centers, so stay far, far away from Thompson.

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 2018 FSWA Basketball Writer of the Year award. 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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