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DraftKings NBA: Wednesday Cheat Sheet

Juan Carlos Blanco

Winner of the FSWA 2016 Newcomer of the Year Award, Juan Carlos Blanco has been playing fantasy sports for close to 20 years and covers NBA, MLB, and the NFL for Rotowire.com, including serving as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' beat writer. He has previously written for KFFL.com and remains an avid season-long and daily fantasy player in multiple sports.

TEAM ANALYSIS

Defense To Avoid
San Antonio Spurs
at Orlando Magic
The Spurs make for both an obvious and prudent call Wednesday, still checking in as the top-ranked defense in fewest points allowed per game (91.7) while facing off against a team averaging under 100 points per contest. While they’ll be on the second game of a back-to-back, they played just down the road in South Florida on Tuesday and disposed of the Heat in relatively comfortable fashion in the second half before making the trip to Orlando. The Magic have also scored fewer than 100 points in three of their last five games, with the two exceptions being a shootout with the defensively-challenged Thunder and an overtime battle with Atlanta on Monday.

Offense To Use
Sacramento Kings
at Philadelphia 76ers
We could have gone two-for-two in no-brainer picks and tabbed the Warriors against the Suns, and they certainly make for a fine offense to hone in on Wednesday as well. However, the Kings could be in an equally advantageous situation, and without as much of a blowout risk attached, thanks to their own porous defense. Sacramento stands a chance to feast on the Sixers at several spots, particularly down low with DeMarcus Cousins against Jahlil Okafor and Nerlens Noel. Rajon Rondo will also very likely be in the midst of a back-and-forth battle with Ish Smith throughout the night, with neither likely to be very effective in stopping the other. Already ranked third in scoring with 106.9 points per game, the Kings could very well blow past that figure Wednesday against a Sixers squad that surrenders a league-worst 105.2 points per game and turns the ball over a league-high 17 times per game.

Teams on Back-to-Backs
First game: Pelicans
Second game: Spurs, Celtics, Jazz, Warriors, Rockets

DAILY PLAYER RECOMMENDATIONS

Point Guard
Ish Smith, PHI vs. SAC ($7,200): Kyrie Irving ($7,700) is mighty appealing in a matchup against the Lakers that nevertheless carries blowout risk, while Reggie Jackson ($6,500) makes for a fine and likely under-owned alternative for tournaments when shopping in the mid-tier for point guard. However, Smith gets the call in his fast-paced and likely competitive matchup against the sieve that is the Kings defense. As has been the case all season, Sacramento continues to give up exceedingly generous fantasy production to point guards, ranking third-worst in the league in fantasy points allowed per game (53.1) to the position. They’ve been even more vulnerable than usual lately, yielding 56.8 over their last five. Smith comes in steady as ever, having bounced back from a one-game absence due to an ankle sprain with a 38.25-fantasy point performance against the tough defense of Chris Paul on Monday. He’s also scored over 40 fantasy points twice and over 50 once in the last 10, and will have extra opportunities to inflict similar damage Wednesday given the speed at which this game should be played.

Other options: Stephen Curry, GSW at PHO ($11,000); Damian Lillard, POR vs. HOU ($9,200); Kyle Lowry, TOR at MIN ($8,500); Rajon Rondo, SAC at PHI ($8,100); Kyrie Irving, CLE vs. LAL ($7,700); Reggie Jackson, DET vs. DEN ($6,500); Mike Conley, MEM at BKN ($6,300)

Shooting Guard
C.J. McCollum, POR vs. HOU ($7,100): McCollum is another nicely-priced player who could return some explosive value Wednesday, as he too will be in the thick of a brisk and potentially high-scoring affair. The third-year guard is locked in at the moment, having scored no fewer than 25.75 fantasy points in his last 10, and having scored between 30.75 and 51.5 in eight other games over that span. His production has been on the rise for three straight, as McCollum has scored 33.0, 36.25 and 41.25 fantasy points in those contests, respectively. He’ll also catch the Rockets on the back end of a back-to-back and coming off a tiring, up-and-down battle against the Warriors, giving him an excellent opportunity to exploit a Houston defense that allows the fifth-most fantasy points per game (42.9) to shooting guards this season.

Other options: James Harden, HOU at POR ($10,400); Klay Thompson, GSW at PHO ($7,800); DeMar DeRozan, TOR at MIN ($7,700); Archie Goodwin, PHO vs. GS ($6,100); Rodney Hood, UTA at NOP ($6,000) ; Devin Booker, PHO vs. GSW ($5,900); J.R. Smith, CLE vs. LAL ($5,800); E'Twaun Moore, CHI vs. ATL ($5,600)

Small Forward
Kent Bazemore, ATL at CHI ($5,400): Bazemore is often a forgotten man in DFS, even at a position that is admittedly difficult to roster on some nights. On a 12-game slate like Wednesday’s with the likes of LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard, Nicolas Batum and Paul George available at small forward, he might be practically invisible. However, all Bazemore has done is score between 21.5 and 38.0 fantasy points in nine of his last 10, and tally over 30 fantasy points in two of his last three. Those numbers represent solid value at his stubbornly stagnant price, allowing you considerable flexibility elsewhere on your roster. The matchup Wednesday only furthers his appeal, as the Bulls rank in the bottom 10 in fantasy points allowed per game to small forwards this season, and they have given up more than five additional fantasy points per game to the position (46.7) over their season average (41.5) in their last five.

Other options: LeBron James, CLE vs. LAL ($9,800); Paul George, IND vs. CHA ($8,400); Kawhi Leonard, SAS at ORL ($7,600); Nicolas Batum, CHA at IND ($7,300); Rudy Gay, SAC at PHI ($6,800); Robert Covington, PHI vs. SAC ($5,800); P.J. Tucker, PHO vs. GSW ($5,400); Marcus Morris, DET vs. DEN ($5,300); Harrison Barnes, GSW at PHO ($4,900); Wesley Johnson, LAC at BOS ($4,800)

Power Forward
Markieff Morris, PHO vs. GSW ($6,500): It’s a pleasantly tough call between Morris and several other appealing mid-tier options at power forward, such as LaMarcus Aldridge ($7,100), Nerlens Noel ($6,500) and Julius Randle ($6,400), but Phoenix’s big man gets the call in a game that should be a rapid-fire shootout with the Warriors. While the Suns will almost certainly come out on the short end of that battle, they figure to go down swinging, and Morris should play an integral part. He’s been a completely different player under interim coach Earl Watson, scoring 30.5, 58.75, 23.25, 44.25 and 39.25 fantasy points over his last five contests, respectively. The Warriors have only been middle-of-the-pack against opposing fours this season, and have shown some vulnerability lately while surrendering 50.6 fantasy points per game to the position over their last five.

Other options: DeMarcus Cousins, SAC at PHI ($11,100); Anthony Davis, NOP vs. UTA ($9,700); Paul Millsap, ATL at CHI ($8,000); Kevin Love, CLE vs. LAL ($7,600); LaMarcus Aldridge, SAS at ORL ($7,100); Zach Randolph, MEM at BKN ($6,500); Nerlens Noel, PHI vs. SAC ($6,500); Julius Randle, LAL at CLE ($6,400)

Center
Rudy Gobert, UTA at NOP ($6,800): As is the case at virtually every position, there’s plenty of solid options available near the top of the price scale at center if you’re looking to spend up. Nicely stocked away in the middle shelf is Gobert, coming off a stellar 10-game stretch that he has an excellent chance to build on Wednesday in a matchup against the second-worst defense against centers this season and over the last 10 games. The Pelicans also rank in the bottom 10 of the league in points (21.2), rebounds (15.5), assists (3.3)and blocks (2.8) allowed to opposing fives this season. Meanwhile, the Stifle Tower has scored between 23.75 and 44.75 fantasy points over his last 10 games, including 42.5, 43.75 and 33.5 over his last three, respectively.

Other options: Pau Gasol, CHI vs. ATL ($9,000); Andre Drummond, DET vs. DEN ($8,300); DeAndre Jordan, LAC at BOS ($7,900); Brook Lopez, BKN vs. MEM ($7,500); Dwight Howard, HOU at POR ($7,400); Al Horford, ATL at CHI ($6,600); Jahlil Okafor, PHI vs. SAC ($6,300); Myles Turner, IND vs. CHA ($6,100); Jonas Valanciunas, TOR at MIN ($6,000); Jared Sullinger, BOS vs. LAC ($5,200)

INJURY REPORT

Out
Rodney Stuckey (ankle)
Al Jefferson (knee)
Manu Ginobili (groin)
Kyle Anderson (illness)
Matt Bonner (calf)
Tim Duncan (knee)
C.J. Watson (calf)
Duje Dukan (leg)
Eric Moreland (foot)
Austin Rivers (hand)
Blake Griffin (hand)
Jordan Adams (knee)
Brandan Wright (knee)
Marc Gasol (knee)
Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (knee)
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (groin)
Spencer Dinwiddie (ankle)
Jodie Meeks (foot)
Larry Nance, Jr. (knee)
Tiago Splitter (hip)
Jimmy Butler (knee)
Nikola Mirotic (appendix)
DeMarre Carroll (knee)
Trey Burke (illness)
Alec Burks (leg)
Eric Gordon (finger)
Tyreke Evans (knee)
Festus Ezeli (knee)
Brandon Knight (groin)
Ronnie Price (toe)
Donatas Motiejunas (back)
Sam Dekker (back)

Game-Time Decision
Tobias Harris (ankle)
Ben McLemore (wrist)
Darrell Arthur (quad)
Jameer Nelson (wrist)
Kobe Bryant (shoulder)
Anthony Brown (ankle)
Roy Hibbert (ankle)
Matthew Dellavedova (hamstring)
James Johnson (ankle)
Kevin Martin (wrist)
Kevin Garnett (knee)
Nikola Pekovic (foot)
James McAdoo (toe)
Terrence Jones (concussion)
Noah Vonleh (ankle)

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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. Juan Carlos Blanco plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: jcblanco22, FanDuel: jc_blanco22, DraftPot: jc_blanco22, FantasyDraft: jc_blanco22, OwnThePlay: jcblanco22.
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