NBA DFS Picks: Yahoo Plays and Strategy for Sunday, February 5
After that monstrous slate on Saturday, we only have six games on Sunday's schedule Unfortunately, only four of those make up the main card starting at 6 p.m. EST. We do have some fun matchups and plenty of players to pick from. With that in mind, let's get started with two of the hottest guards in the NBA.
Jamal Murray, DEN at MIN ($30)
It's unbelievably how good Murray has looked over the last month. Bubble Murray is back, averaging 42 Yahoo points across his last 12 outings. That's a tantalizing total from a $30 player, but we know he can play at a $40 level. A matchup with Minnesota should keep Murray rolling since the T'Wolves rank fifth in pace and 19th in points allowed. They're also surrendering the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing PGs, with Jamal dropping 40 Yahoo points in their most recent matchup two weeks ago.
D'Angelo Russell, MIN vs. DEN ($27)
Russell doesn't get enough credit because he's been a pivotal piece to this Timberwolves resurgence. The absence of Karl-Anthony Towns has allowed Russell to thrive, averaging over 35 Yahoo points per game since the big man went down. The boost in shot attempts and usage is the obvious reason for the bump, with D-Lo posting at least 35 Y! points in eight of his last nine. There's a chance Minnesota will be extremely shorthanded with Jaden McDaniels, Taurean Prince and Austin Rivers all getting ejected on Friday while Kyle Anderson got injured. Denver also allows the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing point guards this season.
Guard to Avoid
Tyrese Maxey, PHI at NYK ($23)
Maxey just produced his best game in a month on Friday, but he's been relegated to bench duties since returning from injury while averaging just 21 Yahoo points per game in his nine games coming off the bench. That's scary because Joel Embiid and James Harden swallow up all of the usage in this offense, leaving Maxey with a sixth-man scoring role. It's tough to provide value in this sort of role when you don't stuff the stat sheet, especially when you're not the most efficient shooter.
Brandon Ingram, NOP vs. SAC ($28)
It took Ingram some time to get going, but he'll be a stud as long as Zion Williamson remains out. With Zion off the floor this year, BI has a 31 percent usage rate while averaging 1.2 Y! points per minute. That led to Ingram dropping 47 Yahoo points across 36 minutes in his most recent effort, and that's the first indication he's ready to return to a full workload. This bump hasn't yet been included in his valuation, and he should slice through a 21st-ranked Sacramento defense. Ingram's registered at least 36 fantasy points in four straight matchups with the Kings while compiling an average of 43.
Keegan Murray, SAC at NOP ($15)
Murray has been horrible the last two games, but the first-year player will have some ups and downs. In any case, he's been way too good to be sitting at $15. Murray had at least 23 Yahoo points in 12 of 14 games before this mini-slide while posting a 27-point average. More importantly, he's logging 35 minutes a night across his last nine. As long as this talented rookie sees 35-40 minutes a night, he needs to be at least $20. New Orleans isn't a daunting matchup having allowed 117 points per game across their last 15.
Forward to Avoid
Tobias Harris, PHI at NYK ($23)
We're fading Toby for all the same reasons as Maxey. They're both ancillary pieces to Harden and Embiid, with those two superstars swallowing all of the usage and shot attempts. That's led to Harris scoring 28 or fewer Yahoo points in 10 of his last 12 games. That won't get it done from a player in this salary range, especially against a Top-10 Knicks defense. In their matchup on Christmas Day, he only managed 18 Yahoo points.
Nikola Jokic, DEN at MIN ($58)
Not much needs to be said about the two-time reigning MVP. He's actually the frontrunner to land his third straight award having averaged 25 points, 11.1 rebounds and 10.1 assists per game. Those triple-double averages have established the highest floor in the NBA and he's recorded at least 52 Yahoo points in 20 of his last 24 games. The big man is also generating a 62-point average during that span, with 63 Y! against these T'Wolves two weeks ago. The Joker always destroys Rudy Gobert for whatever reason and remains the safest option on the board.
Isaiah Hartenstein, NYK vs. PHI ($11)
Trusting Hartenstein with his volatile role is tough, but he's always a great option when given the opportunity. With Mitchell Robinson going down, Hartenstein is averaging 25 Yahoo points across his last six outings. The big man has received at least 23 minutes in 32 games since the start of last season while averaging 29 Yahoo points. That would be an amazing average from such an affordable player, and NY needs him to swallow up minutes against Joel Embiid.
Center to Avoid
Jonas Valanciunas, NOP vs. SAC ($20)
Valanciunas can be a monster when given the minutes, but he's impossible to trust in this diminished role. Ever since Ingram and Larry Nance returned, JV has played 22 or fewer minutes in four straight fixtures. That's disappointing from such an expensive player, with Valanciunas only averaging 18 Yahoo points per game over that stretch. Facing Sacramento is a favorable matchup, but they typically remove JV because of his inability on the defensive end. That's an alarming trend against an All-Star like Domantas Sabonis.