NBA DFS Plays: Thursday 1/7

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Spencer Limbach
·4 min read
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This article aims to highlight some of the best NBA DFS Plays at every position for your cash game lineups. Keep in mind that the following player write-ups were constructed earlier in the day, and sometimes injury/rest situations can alter the fantasy landscape. Monitoring our NBA News & Headlines Feed throughout the day will keep you in the loop while giving you the subsequent DFS consequences of each information piece.

We’ll take a look at Thursday’s five-game main slate starting at 7:30 ET.

POINT GUARD

Kyrie Irving - Brooklyn (vs. Philadelphia) - DK: $9,600 / FD: $10,000 / Yahoo: $47

Kevin Durant is still out, so Irving will soak up as much usage as he can handle yet again. That translated to an unbelievably efficient 51 fantasy points in 29 minutes vs. Utah on Tuesday. Imagine the upside if that game stayed competitive! We shouldn’t have to worry about a blowout vs. Philadelphia tonight, as this should be an entertaining (and high-scoring) battle. The matchup isn’t great, but Kyrie should make up for that (and then some) while holding an insanely high usage rate.

Also Consider: Damian Lillard, Tyus Jones

SHOOTING GUARD

Collin Sexton - Cleveland (at Memphis) - DK: $7,300 / FD: $6,900 / Yahoo: $29

Speaking of usage, Cleveland needs Collin Sexton to keep putting up shots with Darius Garland, Dante Exum, and Kevin Love sidelined. Sexton has responded with 37+ fantasy points in three of his last four, hoisting 18 or more shots in each of those contests. This is a good matchup for him to produce, as Memphis ranked 23rd in defensive efficiency to opposing backcourts last season.

Also Consider: Caris LeVert, Malik Beasley

SMALL FORWARD

Michael Porter Jr. - Denver (vs. Dallas) - DK: $7,100 / FD: $6,700 / Yahoo: $26

Porter isn’t a “must play” by any stretch of the imagination, but he carries realistic profit potential on a tame mid-range salary. The early reports indicate that he’ll be ready to go after missing three games due to COVID-19 protocols. It probably doesn’t hurt to double-check that as we move closer to tip-off. Assuming Porter is a full-go, he’ll have a chance to pick up where he left off: posting 46+ fantasy points in two of four games this season … If you don’t want to tolerate the risk of his status, pivoting to guys like Cedi Osman, Tim Hardaway Jr., or Derrick Jones (more on him later) makes for a fine alternative.

UPDATE: Michael Porter Jr. is now listed as questionable. Hmm. It may be better to stay away from this situation. If Porter is ruled out, then Will Barton becomes a very good mid-range pick through all formats.

Also Consider: Cedi Osman, Tim Hardaway Jr.

POWER FORWARD

Robert Covington - Portland (vs. Minnesota) - DK: $5,300 / FD: $5,000 / Yahoo: $19

Covington has been pretty mediocre from a fantasy perspective this season. In all reality, he’s a much better real-life player than fantasy asset. His playing style is all about solid defense, versatility, and offensive efficiency. That means he usually defers to shooters like Damian Lillard, CJ McCollum, etc. However, Covington is picking things up with 29+ fantasy points in two of his last three. He’s really cheap while looking at a strong matchup against a bad Minnesota defense. “RoCo” might have a little extra motivation on his side while facing the team that traded him away last season. That certainly doesn’t hurt.

Also Consider: Brandon Clarke, Juancho Hernangomez

CENTER

Joel Embiid - Philadelphia (at Brooklyn) - DK: $9,500 / FD: $9,900 / Yahoo: $46

There are enough bargains on this slate to comfortably roster Irving and Embiid in the same lineup - which is my preferred strategy. As mentioned earlier, this BKN-PHI game should be a high-scoring and competitive battle of two teams looking to make some noise in the Eastern Conference. The Nets ranked dead last in defensive efficiency to centers last year, and they are currently 20th to begin this season. Needless to say, this is a great spot for Embiid to feast.

Also Consider: Jarrett Allen

ADDITIONAL NOTES

Juancho Hernangomez (PF - MIN) is someone to keep an eye on for tournaments. Minnesota’s rotation seemingly changes every game with Karl-Anthony Towns still sidelined. Last time around, Hernangomez came through with 47 FP in 34 minutes. Was that a one-hit-wonder, or will Juancho start getting more minutes for the desperate Minnesota frontcourt? That’s the risk/reward situation we are faced with.

Derrick Jones Jr. (SF - POR) is another potential bargain filler with a wide range of fantasy outcomes. He has seen 32-36 minutes in five of his last six games, hitting between 13 and 37 fantasy points in those contests. Perhaps this comfortable matchup vs. Minnesota will push him to the higher end of that range, but that’s definitely a gamble.

Don’t forget about Tobias Harris (SF - PHI) as a nice tournament pivot. Stacking Irving, Embiid, and (maybe) LeVert seems like the sensible approach to this game. Keep in mind that Harris notched 54+ fantasy points in two of three outings before cooling off against Charlotte and Washington.

OddsMoney LinePoint SpreadTotal Points
Miami
+260+7.5O 234.5
Brooklyn
-334-7.5U 234.5