Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.

We won't have much action to speak of in the NBA on Thursday night with only two games on the schedule. Injuries will have a significant impact on the slate, so this one could be a little tricky. Let's try and make the task of setting your Yahoo lineup a little easier by discussing some of the better players to target, as well as a few to avoid.

GUARDS

Devin Booker, PHO vs. NO ($35): Booker is coming off of his best game of the season in which he scored 50 Yahoo points against the Kings. It's no coincidence that Ricky Rubio (back) struggled in that game and didn't play at all in the second half. With Rubio listed as doubtful here, expect Booker to have the ball in his hands a lot. Add that to his elite scoring abilities and he could be in line for a monster performance against a Pelicans team that has played at the fourth-fastest pace in the league.

J.J. Redick, NO at PHO ($12): The Pelicans have already ruled out Josh Hart (knee) for this matchup and Lonzo Ball (hip) is considered questionable. If Ball sits again, Redick should have an expanded role. He's been moved into the starting lineup for their last five games due to all of their injuries and scored at least 25.1 Yahoo points in each contest. That's enough production to warrant his cheap price.

Guard to Avoid

Nickeil Alexander-Walker, NO at PHO ($11): As ugly as the injury report looks for the Pelicans right now, it's actually much better with Brandon Ingram and Frank Jackson now healthy. Alexander-Walker had played at least 30 minutes in back-to-back games over the weekend, scoring 33.3 and 33 Yahoo points, respectively. However, he logged only 16 minutes with Jackson back Tuesday, finishing with 7.3 Yahoo points. With the expectation that he won't play as much now, his upside is extremely limited.

FORWARDS

Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL vs. POR ($57): Fading Giannis for a two-game slate is awfully risky. His floor is a high as anyone's with him averaging 60.1 Yahoo points per game. In fact, he's scored fewer than 50 Yahoo points in a game only one time all season. The Blazers are a mess at power forward, so don't expect them to be able to provide much resistance. There is enough value on the slate to still be able to comfortably fit Giannis into your entry, which makes him even more appealing.

Donte DiVincenzo, MIL vs. POR ($11): One of those value options to target is Giannis' own teammate. DiVincenzo has started in each of the four games that Khris Middleton (quadriceps) has missed, logging at least 24 minutes in each contest. It may have taken him a game to get settled into his new role, but he's now scored at least 25.3 Yahoo points in three straight games.

Forward to Avoid

Carmelo Anthony, POR at MIL ($10): Anthony brings significantly more to the table in name recognition than he does fantasy upside. Although he immediately stepped into the starting five in his first game as a Blazer, that says more about their lack of options than anything else. He only played 24 minutes in that contest and should once again have a limited workload Thursday, making him someone to avoid despite being at the minimum price.

CENTERS

Jaxson Hayes, NO at PHO ($13): The Pelicans will once again be thin up front with Derrick Favors (back) out. Jahlil Okafor (ankle) is also listed as questionable after missing four straight games. Favors and Okafor were both out for the Pelicans' last two contests, which allowed Hayes to score 32 and 32.4 Yahoo points, respectively. If Okafor doesn't suit up, Hayes has the potential to be a steal at this price.

Frank Kaminsky, PHO vs. NO ($13): Both teams are hurting up front entering this contest. Aron Baynes (hip) has already been ruled out for the Suns, putting them in an even deeper hole with Deandre Ayton still suspended. Kaminsky started with Baynes out Tuesday and scored 23.3 Yahoo points across 23 minutes. While Hayes has the higher ceiling, Kaminsky is also a great option.

Center to Avoid

Hassan Whiteside, POR at MIL ($30): This is more about my strategy for this slate than anything else. I'm locking in Giannis and prefer to use at least one of Booker, C.J. McCollum ($30) and Brandon Ingram ($39), as well. Hayes and Kaminsky can be had for nearly the minimum price and both are locked into significant roles, so there's no need to pay up for Whiteside. This isn't exactly a great matchup for him, either, with the Bucks playing at such a fast pace and him having to chase Brook Lopez around the perimeter.

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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