Fantasy Basketball 2014: Daily Dose; January 17th

By Adam Pfeifer
Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back.

If all goes according to plan, Friday night will be the season debut of Rajon Rondo. After months of rehab, Rondo could finally return to the Boston lineup, though he will likely be on a minutes limit. That’s terrific for him, terrific for the Celtics and terrific for the NBA, but when it comes to daily hoops, there’s just one problem.

I don’t really care.

There are other Celtics players that I am far more interested in for tomorrow’s games. 12 contests, plenty of appealing options, and oh, the 76ers play. How could I forget?

Note: FPPG totals are based off FanDuel.

Michael Carter-Williams, PG (vs MIA)

FPPG allowed to PG: 36.15 (3rd)

You’re not getting the numbers you got out of MCW the last time he played Miami. You’re just not. However, I do think he can have another very nice game tonight against the struggling Heat. Sure, he isn’t the best play at point guard tonight, especially when you consider his hefty price, but this is a bit of a gut call from me. First of all, whether it’s Norris Cole or Mario Chalmers at point, neither can stick the massive Carter-Williams. Secondly, the Heat are turning the ball over a league-leading 17.7 times per game, while LeBron James is turning it over four times per game over his last five. That bodes well for Carter-Williams, who has already established himself as a premiere defender in this league, averaging 2.59 steals per game (second-most in NBA). I’m a tad bit concerned Miami blows them out, but the 76ers aren’t nearly as bad when at home.

J.J. Redick, SG (@ NY)

FPPG allowed to SG: 36.10 (21st)

Redick went absolutely bonkers the other night against the defensively challenged Monta Ellis, going off for 33 points on 10-of-14 shooting, while also posting five assists, three rebounds and two steals. He dominated from beyond the arc, sinking seven of nine triples. I’m sure you won’t get that tonight, but I do think he’s a strong play again against the Knicks tonight, who are coming off a back-to-back and aren’t scary to opposing shooting guards. Redick should continue to play 30 minutes per game with Chris Paul sidelined, and the Knicks can’t defend the three ball, allowing 24.7 points per game from beyond the arc, which is the 7th-most in the NBA. Redick could be in line for a nice outing.

LeBron James, SF (@ PHI)

FPPG allowed to SF: 41.90 (30th)

Let LeBron carry your fantasy squads tonight.

After the faceplant against the Wizards, I think LeBron comes out guns-blazing against the worst defensive team in basketball. If you are wiling to pay, there is no one else I’d rather have for tonight. Sure, he hasn’t cracked 50 fantasy points in almost a month, but it’s the Sixers, folks. No team is surrendering more fantasy points or rebounds to opposing small forwards. Also, the Sixers are coughing up the second-most blocks, third-most assists and most three-pointers to the position this season as well. I’m not shying away from LeBron tonight.

Jared Sullinger, PF (vs LAL)

FPPG allowed to PF: 49.97 (30th)

Do it.

Sullinger is coming off a flat-out stupid 25-point, 20-rebound, four-assist, two-steal, 60 fantasy point performance on Wednesday night. And that was against the Raptors, who are nowhere near as bad at rebounding the basketball as the Lakers. Power forwards are also scoring almost nine more fantasy points per game against the Lakers than any other team in basketball. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. No team is worse at rebounding. The Lakers are coughing up the most offensive boards per game (13.1) as well as defensive boards (35.1) on the season, and Sullinger is averaging 10.8 rebounds over his last five games. Also, the Lakers are coughing up the most points in the paint per game this year, coming in at a whopping 48.6 per contest. Sully is also quietly effective from beyond the arc, sinking one per game over his last five. Oh, and on top of all of that, he’ll most likely get Rajon Rondo passing him the ball for upwards to 20 minutes.

I’m sold.

Andre Drummond, C (vs UTA)

FPPG allowed to C: 44.04 (21st)

Drummond continues to get it done, posting a double-double in four of his last five games. Only Kevin Love has more double-doubles on the season than the burgeoning Drummond, who best be in the All-Start game (side note). Anyway, I’m fine with him tonight against an undersized Jazz frontcourt that has struggled defensively. Over the last three games, no team is allowing more points in the paint per game than the Jazz (54.7), but have been struggling all year, coughing up the third-most in the league all year long. That bodes well for Drummond, who does all of his damage close to the basket. A player like Drummond, who is shooting almost 60 percent from the field, should continue to be efficient against the Jazz, who are allowing centers to shoot 54 percent from the field on the year, which is the third-most in the league.

Adam Pfeifer is a featured fantasy sports columnist for Rant Sports.

You can follow him on Twitter @aPfeiferRS.

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