After a busy Friday night, the NBA quiets down Saturday with only five games on the schedule, four of which will make up the main slate on Yahoo. Even though there won't be a lot of games, scoring might not be hard to come by with bad defensive teams like the Pelicans, Hornets, Bulls and Warriors all in action. Here are some players who could capitalize on favorable matchups, as well as a few to avoid.
Luka Doncic, DAL at MEM ($47): The Grizzlies are no longer the defensive-minded, slow paced team that we've seen in recent years. In fact, they enter this game having played at the sixth-fastest pace and allowing the sixth-most points per game in the league. That could lead to a hefty stat line from Doncic, who has already scored at least 49.3 Yahoo points in six of his eight games.
Hamidou Diallo, OKC vs. GS ($10): With the Warriors allowing 121.9 points per game, the Thunder are another team to target. Aside from their top players, Diallo is also worth considering. He's scored at least 20.7 Yahoo points in five straight games and has logged at least 22 minutes in each of his last three contests. He's certainly outplayed Terrance Ferguson, who is only averaging 3.5 points and 2.1 rebounds despite starting each of the Thunder's eight games.
Guard to Avoid
Ky Bowman, GS at OKC ($17): When D'Angelo Russell went down with an injury, the Warriors turned to Bowman to assume a starting role. He made the most of his opportunity, scoring at least 32.8 Yahoo points in two of his three starts. However, with Russell back in the fold Friday, Bowman logged only 12 minutes and scored just 8.3 Yahoo points. He's not overly cheap anymore, so it's difficult to justify adding him to your entry.
Brandon Ingram, NO at CHA ($37): Ingram is the most expensive forward on the slate, so even if you do decide to deploy him, paying up here won't destroy your budget. He's certainly provided a high floor in the early going, scoring at least 33.1 Yahoo points in all but one game. Add his 28.5 percent usage rate to his averages of 7.1 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game and he's one of the safer options to target.
Danuel House Jr., HOU at CHI ($15): House has emerged as an important player for the Rockets. He's not only started seven of their eight games, but he's averaging 31 minutes a night. The added playing time combined with his average of 2.8 three-pointers a night goes a long way to aiding his offensive numbers despite his 13.6 percent usage rate. At this reasonable price, he could provide excellent value.
Forward to Avoid
Eric Gordon, HOU at CHI ($16): The Rockets are expected to get Gordon back after he missed Wednesday's contest against the Warriors with a hamstring injury. Although he's an excellent three-point shooter, he only has an 18.6 percent usage rate and provides very little value outside of the scoring column. Considering House is a dollar cheaper and can contribute more with rebounds and defensive stats, it might be best to avoid Gordon.
Clint Capela, HOU at CHI ($28): Capela is coming off of one of his best games in the early going after producing 19 points, 16 rebounds, two assists and six blocks against the Warriors. While the Warriors are a mess up front, it was good to see Capela at least take advantage of his favorable matchup since he's only averaging 13.5 points and 9.6 rebounds out of the gate. This is another favorable chance for him to shine against a Bulls team that has the worst rebounds per game differential (-8.2) in the league. To put how bad they have been into perspective, the next worse team is the Wizards with a -3.4 differential.
Wendell Carter Jr., CHI vs. HOU ($17): With only four games on the schedule, there aren't a lot of cheap center options to be excited about. Carter is coming off of a dud of a performance in which he scored only 8.4 Yahoo points against the Hawks. He had foul trouble in that contest, which limited him to 13 minutes. However, he had recorded three straight double-doubles heading into that matchup, so he's at least worth considering.
Center to Avoid
Willie Cauley-Stein, GS at OKC ($15): There isn't much to see here with Cauley-Stein. Despite starting four of the five games that he's played in, he's only averaging 17 minutes a night. He also has a 16.1 percent usage rate, which isn't helping his cause, either. Playing against a Thunder team that has allowed the sixth-fewest points per game and has Steven Adams patrolling the paint likely isn't going to help Cauley-Stein have a breakout performance.