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Daily Games Cheat Sheet: Monday

Chris Barnes

Chris Barnes covers the Oklahoma City Thunder and writes weekly NBA columns for Rotowire.


Defenses to Avoid
San Antonio Spurs vs. Philadelphia 76ers: Over their past five games, the Spurs have the third best defensive rating and are allowing 93.4 points per game. They're currently on a 13 game win streak in which they have held opponents below 100 points even times. The Sixers will extend their streak to 25 straight losses if they lose Monday, and are averaging just 86.8 points over their past five games while continuing to place last in offensive rating. They've scored more than 95 points just twice in their past 11 games and should have yet another hard night on offense against one of the hottest teams in the league and premier defenses.

Offenses to Use
San Antonio Spurs vs. Philadelphia 76ers: Just as this matchup looks bad for the Sixers' offense, it looks like it could be equally bad defensively. The Sixers' defense has given up an average of just under 104 points per game over their past eight games, and doesn't look like a likely candidate to slow down San Antonio's red hot offense. During their 13 game win streak, the Spurs are averaging 111.5 points per game and have scored more than 110 points in eight of those games. Even if Coach Gregg Popovich decides to rest one or two of his players, the Spurs' offense should continue to roll Monday.

Teams on a Back-to-Back Set

First game of a back-to-back: Portland Trail Blazers, Oklahoma City Thunder,
Second game of a back-to-back: Toronto Raptors, Atlanta Hawks, Phoenix Suns, Minnesota Timberwolves, Denver Nuggets, Milwaukee Bucks, Brooklyn Nets DAILY PLAYER RECOMMENDATIONS

If you've never played on before, we recommend reading our Daily Fantasy Basketball 101: How to Win on DraftKings strategy article.

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Point Guard
Brandon Knight, MIL (at LAC), PG/SG ($7,100): Knight has been great over his past five games averaging 21.2 points on 44.6 percent shooting, 5.0 rebounds, 4.6 assists, and 1.2 steals. He's also shooting 42 percent from three, and his percentages over the past few games have been well above his season averages. He's also rebounding the ball well and passing it decently. Although his assist numbers aren't fantastic for a point guard, he provides solid numbers across the board and has been a better fantasy option later than normal.

Other options: Tony Parker, SAS (vs. PHI), PG ($6,600), Patrick Beverley, HOU (at CHA), PG/SG ($5,100).

Shooting Guard
Dwyane Wade, MIA (vs. POR), PG/SG ($6,700): Despite not playing every game, Wade remains a solid fantasy option at either guard position. Over his last four games he's averaging 18.5 points on just under 50 percent shooting, 3.8 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 1.3 steals. He's normally a very efficient shooter for a guard although he doesn't provide threes, as he's taken just one attempt from three in his past six games. He's an excellent distributor and defender though, and can rack up stats all around even if he's not scoring at a very high rate. Against a weak defense in the Trail Blazers, Wade should be able to do some damage.

Other options: Kawhi Leonard, SAS (vs. PHI), SG/SF ($6,400).

Small Forward
Joe Johnson, BKN (at NOR), SG/SF ($5,900): Johnson has been on fire lately, scoring 20.8 points per game in his past five games on 55 percent shooting and making over three threes per game at a rate of just under 60 percent. He's putting up 5.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 0.8 steals along with that. Johnson is known to get the hot hand at times and carry Brooklyn's scoring load, but the fact that he's kept his his efficiency over several games means he should be picked up while he's still cheap and still producing at this rate.

Other options: Terrence Jones, HOU (at CHA), SF/PF ($5,500).

Power Forward
Taj Gibson, CHI (vs. IND), PF/C ($6,000): Gibson is averaging 15.4 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 2.0 blocks in 27.2 minutes over his past five games. Even if he doesn't see as many minutes as some other big fantasy producers, he still provides points, rebounds, blocks, and decent percentages at a cheap rate. He rarely provides assist or steals numbers and doesn't shoot threes, but he is a great option for his a few categories and provides them well in the minutes he gets.

Other options: Markieff Morris, PHO (at ATL), PF/C ($5,800), Derrick Favors, UTA (vs. DET), PF/C ($6,900).

Tim Duncan, SAS (vs. PHI), PF/C ($7,400): Duncan has been great in limited minutes lately, averaging 11.8 points on 45 percent shooting, 9.8 rebounds, 5.0 assists, 1.8 blocks, and 1.0 steals per game in just 27.2 minutes per game for his last four games. His scoring can leave a bit to be desired, as less than 12 points per game and 45 percent shooting isn't the most ideal scoring rate for a top tier big man, but Duncan can contribute in every category other than threes and his assists, blocks, and steals help make up for the missed offense. Even if the Spurs end up blowing out the Sixers on Monday, Duncan could still provide his average value since he does his work in under 30 minutes a game anyways. He also rested for the Spurs' last game on Thursday so it would be surprising if coach Gregg Popovich decided to rest him again so soon.

Other options: DeAndre Jordan, LAC (vs. MIL), C ($7,300), Chris Bosh, MIA (vs. POR), PF/C ($6,500).


Thabo Sefolosha (calf) participated in light work and shot some jumpers during Sunday's practice.
LaMarcus Aldridge (back) will not play against the Heat on Monday.
Kyle Korver (back) did not play Sunday and does not have a timetable to return.
Alec Burks (ankle) sat out Sunday's practice and will not play Monday.
Eric Gordon (knee) missed Saturday's game with tendinitis in his knee.
J.J. Hickson (knee) suffered a torn MCL Saturday and will miss the rest of the season.
Nate Wolters (hand) is out for the season.
Andrew Bynum (knee) is out indefinitely.
Kevin Garnett (back) did not travel with the team for their current road trip and has not played in nearly a month.

Game-Time Decision
Andrei Kirilenko (ankle) left Sunday's game with a left ankle sprain and did not return.
Dwight Howard (ankle) participated in practice Sunday but no decision will be made on his status for Monday's game until game time.
Nikola Pekovic (ankle) did not play Sunday.
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.