76ERS VS PISTONS
Joel Embiid is listed as questionable and I do not expect him to play tonight. Philly is on a back to back and the Pistons have already ruled out Blake and Rose, which makes me want to believe Philly is more likely to rest Joel. The good thing is it’s the first game of the slate so we'll know before lock. Now if Joel is out, Tobias, Ben, and Dwight make for great plays. Last time Joel sat Ben and Tobias did disappoint, but I don’t see that happening often. The thing I love the most about Ben is in a slate filled with a lot of good guards you can play him at forward. Pistons have ruled out Blake and Rose, which makes me like guys like Wright, Josh Jackson, Grant, and Bey. you can honestly play all four of these guys in cash if needed, I would probably play two for sure. Wright's minutes have been inconsistent throughout the year, but the past couple of games it has been better and he has been playing better as a result. I am especially not worried about it tonight because not only is Rose out, but so is Hayes. If Joel sits I really like this game and I would expect it to stay close, however if Joel plays I will have no interest in the Philly guys and I will probably only play the cheap guys from Detroit and stay away from Grant.
PELICANS VS TIMBERWOLVES
The Timberwolves are going to be without DLO which is huge and Rubio is also listed as questionable. Pelicans are listed as 8 point favorites as of now, but I am really not worried about this game blowing out. Pelicans have just looked awful recently. I expect this game to stay close even without DLO and/or Rubio. When Lonzo first returned to the lineup he did have a limit I expected him to cut more into NAW time, but NAW had led Bledsole and Lonzo in minutes that game. The game after NAW only played 18, while Bledsole and Zo played 27 and 28. I feel like the rotation is just too hard to predict with them and we have way better guards on this slate in general so they are a stay away for me. My favorite play from NOLA is easily Zion. Zion lives to score in the paint and the Wolves are the worst defensive team in the league and it’s not even close. Everyone has been waiting for a Zion ceiling game and it might happen today. On the Wolves side I really like Beasley, he is easily the number one option on the team today. Rubio should start if he plays, if he is ruled out look for McLaughlin to start and make for a really good value today. Vanderbilt at 4.7 is another good play for cash and gpp. Edwards is a stay away for me unless Rubio is ruled out, if Rubio sits Edwards is fine, but he seems to be more of a gpp vs cash play to me.
HEAT VS NETS
A lot of people are out for Miami again because of health protocol. No, Herro and Butler give a huge boost to guys like Dragic and Bam, even Nunn. Nunn has worked his way back into the rotation with all the injuries Miami has dealt with and he has been playing 30 plus minutes recently because he has been effective when he has been on the court. Miami is in such a good spot vs Brooklyn, this should be a really high scoring game. I do not mind playing Dragic, Nunn, and Bam together, I would say to pick one of Dragic or Nunn mainly because of how many good guard plays we have on this slate. On the Brooklyn side I really have no interest in Kyrie, KD, or Harden. I would much rather just play Luka. if you play one of the three I think KD would be the best gpp option.
LAKERS VS BULLS
Last time these two teams played the Lakers won by 2 points, however AD did sit that game. LeBron has been listed as questionable, but it has been like that for almost every game this season I expect him to suit up. If this game stays close I really like LeBron. AD has been struggling recently and LeBron rates in general have just been better. I would not play LeBron in cash unless you think this game stays close. Eventually AD is going to go back to putting up his regular numbers so I don’t mind taking the risk on him in large field tournaments. Wendell and Otto are out tonight, Temple and Gafford should get the start again. I liked Gafford as a value play, before we got all the injury news for the day, now I don’t think you need him. He’s a good point per minute guy, but he is probably only going to see 18-20 minutes again mainly because Young will get more run. Boogie is way too cheap again for him not to be in my center spot and I have a good feeling I will probably have a guard at my UTL tonight.
ROCKETS VS MAVERICKS
Oladipo has been ruled out, however John Wall is listed as probable. Given Wall is not restricted at 7k he should be able to smash vs Dallas. Boogie is just too cheap again without Wood, I expect the whole field to be on him again. I don't see the reason to get off of him either. Eric Gordon had an alright game last night, nothing crazy, but with no Dipo and Wood he makes for a fine play (more of a gpp play as of now, don’t mind him for cash if it’s a last option). On Dallas I really like Luka, probably one of the best if not the best matchup he has had all year. He has a real triple double upside tonight and will probably be in my cash lineup. Porzingis price seems a bit low given his ceiling and the great matchup he has, only thing that worries me is that it’s a back to back so they may try to limit him a little.
NUGGETS VS SUNS
Devin Booker will not play due to a hamstring injury. CP3 and Bridges make for good plays in cash and gpp. Only thing that concerns me a little about CP3 is he played 40 minutes last night since the game went to OT and it's a back to back. I wouldn’t worry about it too much however, even if he only sees 30-32 minutes, he should be able to smash with no Booker on the floor. I like Ayton and Payne, but more for gpp vs cash. Galloway or Carter should start, not big on them because we have way too many good guard plays today to have to punt to one of them. As I am writing this Murray has just gotten listed as questionable, if he sits I love Monte Morris. Jokic is a gpp play, don’t mind him in cash again it’s just a matter of how you are going to use that UTL spot tonight.
WARRIORS VS JAZZ.
On Golden State Curry is a good gpp play, he has a low floor, but a 60-70 point ceiling vs anyone almost. Oubre and Wiggins are priced right, so I don’t think you need them tonight unless it’s for an ownership edge. Draymond is viable at 5.5k if you are game log chasing he got ejected last game so I wouldn’t worry about him. Utah Mitchell is fine for gpp, I like a lot of the other guards better tonight as of now. Rudy Gobert on the other hand is in a smash spot at 7.3k vs Golden State. Like I said earlier I will have Cousins at my center spot, if I do not play a guard at UTL it will more than likely be Gobert.
Like tonight’s slate, picking the right guards tonight is probably going to be huge and what you do for your UTL spot. One more thing I wanted to mention is, it looks like Porzingis is going to be out tonight. Green should start in place of him, not big on him. James Johnson should benefit more, but at 4.9k it’s a stay away for me. Brunson seems like a good gpp option and sees a usage bump without KP. Hope the article was helpful, I will have my core 5 posted on Twitter (@Dfsriches) if you want to sign up as a sub, just DM me. Don’t forget to follow @MKFRICHES as well. I'm posting MonkeyKnifeFight props on that page now.