Yahoo DFS Basketball: Friday Picks

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·4 min read
Yahoo DFS Basketball: Friday Picks
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  • Portland Trail Blazers
    Portland Trail Blazers
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  • Toronto Raptors
    Toronto Raptors
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  • Utah Jazz
    Utah Jazz
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  • Jimmy Butler
    Jimmy Butler
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  • Scottie Barnes
    Scottie Barnes
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The NBA will have no shortage of action for us to enjoy New Years Eve with 10 games on the schedule. The first one starts at 1:00 p.m. EST when the Celtics host the Suns in a matchup between shorthanded sides due to COVID-19. After having their contest against the Spurs postponed Wednesday because they didn't have enough players, the Heat will look to return to action against the Rockets. With Jimmy Butler (ankle) hopeful to play, the Heat may have enough players. As far as some positive news on the COVID front, the Raptors could receive significant reinforcements for their matchup against the Clippers with Fred VanVleet, Scottie Barnes and OG Anunoby all clearing the health and safety protocols. Let's discuss some players to consider for your Yahoo lineups, as well as a few to potentially avoid.

GUARDS

Desmond Bane, MEM vs. SA ($24): Bane has stepped up his production in his second season averaging 17.3 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.9 three-pointers. The Grizzlies have asked even more of him with De'Anthony Melton and Dillon Brooks in the protocols, which has left him to score at least 31.8 Yahoo points in each of the last three contests. Add that expanded role to the Spurs playing at the third-fastest pace in the league and Bane is difficult to resist deploying in DFS.

Jordan Clarkson, UTA vs. MIN ($18): Clarkson took on an increased role with Donovan Mitchell (back) out the last two with 40.1 and 34.3 Yahoo points respectively. Mitchell is expected to return for this matchup, but Mike Conley Jr. will sit for rest. That should once again afford Clarkson with more playing time.

Guard to Avoid

Kevin Porter Jr., HOU vs. MIA ($24): This matchup will require monitoring. If Butler can't return, the league might be forced to postpone. Their situation isn't getting much better considering Duncan Robinson landed in the protocols Thursday. However, if Butler is able to return and they're ready to play, the Heat will still have one of their key defenders who has helped lead them to the league's seventh-best defensive rating. That could spell trouble for the turnover-prone Porter.

FORWARDS

Larry Nance Jr., POR at LAL ($18): Nance logged 32 minutes Wednesday with Jusuf Nurkic, Robert Covington and Cody Zeller all with COVID. Despite his tough matchup against the Jazz, he finished with 14 points, nine rebounds, nine assists and three steals. With Nance posting at least 30.2 Yahoo points in three of his last four, he could end up being a handful for his former squad.

Obi Toppin, NY at OKC ($10): The Knicks' latest player to land in the protocols is Julius Randle, leaving a huge hole in their offense. He hasn't missed a game all season, so this will be uncharted waters. Toppin will likely start, making him an intriguing play at the minimum salary. Across seven appearances in which he's logged at least 20 minutes this season, he's averaged 12.6 points, 5.6 rebounds and 0.9 blocks.

Forward to Avoid

Kyle Anderson, MEM vs. SA ($16): Even with the Grizzlies playing shorthanded lately, Anderson has scored 21.1 Yahoo points or fewer in each of the last five contests. He also saw 26 minutes or fewer in four of those and is only averaging 22 minutes for the season. There are plenty of other appealing forward options in this salary range.

CENTERS

Kevin Love, CLE vs. ATL ($20): The Cavs need scoring with Darius Garland (COVID-19) and Ricky Rubio (knee) out. They got it Thursday from Love, who finished with 24 points and 11 rebounds against the Wizards. Even if Jarrett Allen is cleared from the protocols in time to play tonight, Love should be asked to provide added offense. If he's out again, Love could provide tremendous value.

Omer Yurtseven, MIA at HOU ($16): Again, we'll need to keep our eyes peeled for updates throughout the day. If this game does go on as scheduled, Yurtseven could be very busy. With the Heat's limited depth at center, he's scored at least 34.0 Yahoo points in three of the last four games.

Center to Avoid

Chris Boucher, TOR vs. LAC ($20): Boucher produced a monster stat line against the Sixers on Tuesday with 28 points, 19 rebounds and two blocks. With very few players available because of COVID, Boucher was forced to play 38 minutes. He's only averaged 17 minutes per game for the season, so his playing time could plummet with Pascal Siakam, Precious Achiuwa, Scottie Barnes and OG Anunoby all cleared to go.