All the game-time decisions.
Tonight is one of those very common nights where fantasy players have to constantly check the updates from team beat writers because so many players are game-time calls this evening. I mean, you’ve got guys like DeMarcus Cousins, Jeff Teague and Ty Lawson who’s statuses are up in the air, which will drastically impact the daily landscape.
So pay attention, you degenerates.
Note: FPPG totals are based off FanDuel scoring.
Mike Conley, PG (@ MIN)
FPPG allowed to PG: 41.17 (23rd)
I’m beginning to find myself starting any point guard against the Wolves because they are terrible on defense and Ricky Rubio can’t cover anyone. Over his last three games, Conley is averaging a strong 38 fantasy points per game and on the season, the Memphis point guard is averaging a healthy 88.6 offensive touches per game, the 5th-most in all of basketball. That bodes well for his matchup against Minnesota who are coughing up the 8th-most fantasy points per game to opposing point guards. The position is also scoring the second-most points per game (22) and the second-most made field goals (8.33). The Grizzlies play at a rather ugly pace, but that may change tonight against the league’s second-fastest team in the Timberwolves, which will result in a few more possessions for Conley and the offense.
Randy Foye, SG (vs TOR)
FPPG allowed to SG: 36.03 (21st)
Injuries to the Nuggets point guard duo helped Foye explode for 33 points, three rebounds and seven assists the other night, as he logged 40 minutes in a close game. Nate Robinson has already been ruled out for this game, so now leaves just Lawson, who is a true game-time decision. Foye will likely log plenty of minutes regardless, but if Lawson sits, Foye becomes essentially a must-play because on top of those minutes, he’ll be handling the ball more than anyone on the Denver roster. He fired a healthy 21 shots in that game and should flirt with those numbers tonight if Lawson isn’t in the lineup. The Raptors are well above the league average when it comes to fantasy points allowed to shooting guards and at under 10k on DraftDay, he’s a terrific option tonight.
DeMarre Carrol, SF (@ PHI)
FPPG allowed to SF: 42.10 (30th)
Fire up those Hawks.
Carrol hasn’t been flashy by any means, but he’s been a consistent source of points, averaging 15.75 points per game over his last four contests. He is going to play at least 30 minutes each and every night, but he could play 20 minutes and still meet value against the 76ers, who allow the most fantasy points (42.10), assists (4.54) and three-pointers made (2.76) to opposing small forwards on the year. Meanwhile, Carrol, a capable three-point shooter who is sinking 1.2 per game, should thrive in this matchup against a Sixers team that is surrendering the most points per game from beyond the arc this year, coming in at 29. Not a sexy name, but a nice mid-range option with 30-40 fantasy point upside tonight against Philly.
Paul Millsap, PF (@ PHI)
FPPG allowed to PF: 44.87 (27th)
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
Millsap, who was selected as an All-Star reserve for the East, is well deserving and should continue to prove that he is tonight against the Sixers who are allowing the fourth-most fantasy points per game to opposing power forwards. Millsap provides nice consistency, too, posting fantasy totals of 39, 37.50, 36.50, 52.25 and 42.25 over his last five contests. I’m thinking of one of the latter totals tonight against a Sixers team that is also coughing up the 5th-most offensive rebounds per game (12.2) and the 2nd-most defensive boards per game (34.9). Their frontcourt is incredibly soft, and the fact that Millsap has developed a bit of a three-ball this season, sinking one per game, helps in this matchup because of the three-point struggles the 76ers have. There is no reason he shouldn’t be in almost every lineup tonight.
Al Jefferson, C (@ LAL)
FPPG allowed to C: 49.46 (30th)
The play of the evening, Jefferson NEEDS to be in every lineup tonight against a depleted and weak Lakers frontcourt. You’d be hard-pressed to find a center playing better basketball than Big Al right now, who is averaging an insane 27.6 points, 12.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.6 blocks over his last five contests, averaging an awesome 48.15 fantasy points per game during that span. In fact, the last time Jefferson posted fewer than 35 fantasy points was back on January 10th when he only played 28 minutes. No team in basketball allows more defensive or offensive rebounds per game than the Lakers (13.3 and 35, respectively) or more rebounds per game to opposing centers, coming in at a whopping 16.15 per contest. Jefferson, meanwhile, is seeing a healthy 16.3 rebound chances per game, which is good for the 15th-most in all of basketball. Playing in LA should make the Bobcats play at a bit more of a higher pace, which should add to Jefferson’s 8.6 close touches per game (2nd-most). And oh, by the way, the Lakers are also allowing the most points in the paint per game this year (48.7).
Adam Pfeifer is a featured fantasy sports columnist for Rant Sports.
You can follow him on Twitter @aPfeiferRS.