3 NBA FanDuel Studs to Target on Wednesday 11/30/22
Basketball is the most consistent sport for daily fantasy purposes.
A top slugger in baseball will have his fair share of 0-for-4 days, and an elite fantasy football player is at risk of having games where his team's offense as a whole is shut down.
A high-salaried NBA stud is generally going to get his, though. With so many possessions in a game providing opportunities to produce, top fantasy basketball options will be posting high scores just about every night.
While this consistency puts us in a good position to identify top plays, it also means you can't afford to miss when you're paying up for someone. Even with strong value plays in your lineup, paying up and getting a dud is likely going to leave your lineup drawing pretty close to dead.
Which top players should be the focal points of your lineups today?
Nikola Jokic, C, Nuggets ($11,200)
The formula for when to roster Nikola Jokic is becoming clear. If one (or both) of his co-stars sit, fire him up.
Jokic has seen a bit of a revival in the past three contests with Michael Porter Jr. on the shelf. His usage rate (29.3%) and FanDuel-point-per-minute rate (1.62) in that span more closely mirror that of his back-to-back MVP seasons. Porter will miss Wednesday's game due to a heel injury, too.
Beyond the 231.5-point total in this one, the Rockets are perpetually a target for big men in daily fantasy. They're bottom-10 in paint points allowed per game (50.5), and they hold the NBA's third-worst defensive rating (115.1).
Jokic and Jamal Murray went bananas in just three quarters in this matchup on Monday. They posted 55.4 and 44.1 FanDuel points, respectively, in fewer than 28 minutes. A blowout appears to be their lone path to failure again on Wednesday, and as we saw, they might be just fine even with one.
Jayson Tatum, SF/PF, Celtics ($10,200)
Speaking of guys who got it done Monday in just three quarters, Jayson Tatum did it, too.
With Jaylen Brown on the shelf due to a neck injury, Tatum dropped in 35 points in just 29 minutes, and he held a Luka Doncic-like 39.7% usage rate in the game. All in all, it resulted in a FanDuel-point-per-minute rate (1.75) that blew away this salary.
The case for Tatum is a simple one if Brown -- who is questionable -- sits. However, he's someone we can just plan on using at this salary no matter what. He's got a 33.4% usage rate during the month of November, and that's been turned into a suitable-for-this-salary 1.41 FanDuel points per minute.
The Miami Heat have basically their entire team on Wednesday's injury report, so their stingy defense might be weakened. Plus, Miami allows the third-most three-point attempts per game (37.6), so Tatum and his Celtics teammates should have quality looks from the perimeter.
In tournaments, I'll likely get to Tatum on Wednesday regardless of Brown's status. He'll be a must in cash games if Brown remains out.
Ja Morant, PG, Grizzlies ($10,000)
Floor, in my opinion, is undervalued in NBA daily fantasy because of the "predictable" nature of NBA compared to MLB or NFL.
Yes, while a star's floor isn't "zero," many can wildly disappoint in tough matchups, poor shooting nights, or due to foul trouble. When you see a consistent floor in NBA daily fantasy, it's also probably got a ceiling, too.
That's been Ja Morant for as long as the Grizzlies have operated without Desmond Bane. He's posted at least 44 FanDuel points in each of his last seven games in which he's gotten at least 30 minutes, but he's also crossed 55 FanDuel points on four occasions during that time.
His 36.5% usage rate with Bane off the floor this month has been stellar, and Wednesday's environment should have plenty of scoring potential with a solid 231.5-point total on deck.