Yahoo DFS Basketball: Friday Picks

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Yahoo DFS Basketball: Friday Picks
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There will be no shortage of action in the NBA on Friday with nine games . The Nets will take the floor, but Kyrie Irving will be unable to play against the Bucks. The Bulls will look to maintain their place atop the Eastern Conference when they host the Wizards, who are 9-12 on the road. As far as injuries go, one of the more notable ones is Luka Doncic (ankle) being listed as doubtful to play against the Rockets. The Trail Blazers will also be without Damian Lillard (abdomen) again when they host the Cavs. Let's highlight some players to consider for your Yahoo lineups, as well as a few to possibly avoid.

GUARDS

Darius Garland, CLE at POR ($30): After missing four games while in the health and safety protocols, Garland made his return Tuesday against the Grizzlies. He logged 36 minutes, so he clearly wasn't limited. Not only did Garland play a lot, but he was extremely productive recording 27 points, four rebounds and 10 assists. With the Cavs decimated at guard, expect him to remain busy.

Jalen Brunson, DAL at HOU ($23): When Doncic is out, Brunson usually plays well. Over a 10-game stretch where the star was out earlier this season, Brunson averaged 21.0 points, 3.5 rebounds and 7.4 assists. Add in a favorable matchup against a Rockets team that has played at the third-fastest pace in the league and he should be a popular option.

Guard to Avoid

David Duke Jr., BKN vs. MIL ($16): Duke rejoined the starting five Wednesday against the Pacers, but only managed two points and three rebounds across 18 minutes. With the Nets mostly healthy, expect Duke to continue seeing limited court time - even if he starts again. If you're looking for a guard in this salary range, Malik Monk ($15) and his minimum of 30.3 Yahoo points from four of his last six is more appealing.

FORWARDS

LeBron James, LAL vs. ATL ($55): James has carried the Lakers with Anthony Davis (knee) out averaging 34.3 points, 9.9 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.4 blocks over nine outings. Not only did he average 22.4 shot attempts during that stretch, but he converted them at a rate of 55.4 percent. LeBron could demolish a Hawks side entering with the league's fifth-worst defensive rating.

Maxi Kleber, DAL at HOU ($10): In addition to Doncic likely being out, Kristaps Porzingis is in the health and safety protocols. His absence should leave Kleber with plenty of minutes. While his ceiling isn't all that high, he's posted at least 20.0 Yahoo points in five straight games, so he's at least worth considering at the minimum salary.

Forward to Avoid

Harrison Barnes, SAC at DEN ($20): Barnes is starting to see his role diminish within the Kings offense. He's only averaged 9.0 shot attempts and 4.6 boards over the last five contests despite playing at least 30 minutes in four. With the Nuggets playing at the sixth-slowest pace, Barnes may not have a lot of opportunities to provide value in this matchup.

CENTERS

Karl-Anthony Towns, MIN at OKC ($40): These teams just met Wednesday and Towns dominated that finishing with 17 points, 16 rebounds, three assists, two blocks and a steal. The Thunder don't offer much size up front, which has contributed to them allowing the second-most rebounds per game. Their deficiencies on the glass could leave Towns with another juicy stat line.

Hassan Whiteside, UTA at TOR ($12): This one will require some monitoring. Rudy Gobert was placed in the protocols Thursday, which would normally set up Whiteside to start. However, he's listed as questionable while dealing with the effects of a concussion. If Whiteside plays, he could be a steal at this salary. If he doesn't, you could pivot to Dwight Howard ($12), who scored 41.3 Yahoo points against the Kings on Tuesday and could garner a few extra minutes in a matchup against Clint Capela.

Center to Avoid

Nikola Vucevic, CHI vs. WAS ($36): This is more about Towns than it is Vucevic. Vucevic has been excellent for the Bulls of late, but he's been somewhat aided by their COVID outbreak that has left them shorthanded more often than not. They are in much better shape on the health front now, so Vucevic could start to see his numbers decline again. Towns' salary is only four dollars more and he's in a leading role, which leaves him with significantly higher upside.