Yahoo's main evening slate Sunday consists of only five games, which doesn't exactly leave us with a bevy of options to choose from. The good news is we won't be short on stars with the Blazers, Nets, Bucks and Lakers among the teams in action. Let's highlight some players across the price scale to consider, as well as a few to avoid.
Damian Lillard, POR vs. ATL ($43): Lillard went off in his last game Friday against the Nets by scoring a career-high 60 points. His usage rate sits at 31.3 percent, which is nothing new since he hasn't had one below 29.3 percent in any of the previous four seasons. He hasn't scored fewer than 43.1 Yahoo points in a game this season and should once again be one of the safer options of the evening.
Fred VanVleet, TOR at LAL ($23): The news isn't positive for Kyle Lowry, who is going to miss at least two weeks with a fracture in his left thumb. VanVleet had already become one of the more productive players on the Raptors before Lowry went down, averaging 15.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 7.4 assists and 1.3 steals. Expect them to rely on him even more moving going forward, making him a great option at this reasonable price.
Guard to Avoid
Chris Paul, OKC vs. MIL ($27): Paul has been one of the most prolific passers in the league during his career, so it's strange to see him enter this contest averaging only 5.2 assists across his first nine games. With Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Dennis Schroder in the fold, Paul likely will continue to handle the ball less than he's been accustomed to during his career. He's already had four games this season in which he has scored 30.9 Yahoo points or fewer, so it might be wise to keep him out of your lineup.
LeBron James, LAL vs. TOR ($50): The Lakers have asked LeBron James to run their offense, which has enabled him to average a whopping 10.5 assists out of the gate. His usage rate also sits at 31.6 percent, leading to an average of 26 points per game. Add in his stellar contributions on the boards and his ceiling is as high as anyone on this slate.
Taj Gibson, NY vs. CLE ($10): The Knicks weren't shy about adding depth up front this summer, bringing in Gibson, Julius Randle and Bobby Portis to play alongside holdover Mitchell Robinson. That's left the four of them to fight for playing time, but they'll have one less mouth to feed Sunday with Robinson still sidelined because of a concussion. Gibson started in his absence Friday and scored 25.1 Yahoo points across 28 minutes. At the minimum price, he's at least worth considering in tournament play.
Forward to Avoid
Larry Nance Jr., CLE at NY ($17): Nance has seen his playing time decrease this season by averaging only 24 minutes per game. As long as Kevin Love and Tristan Thompson are both healthy, his minutes will also likely be limited moving forward. He's scored 20.1 Yahoo points or fewer in five straight games, which isn't going to cut it at this price.
Tristan Thompson, CLE at NY ($30): It feels like Thompson could roll out of bed and record a double-double. He already produced seven through eight games, leaving him with averages of 17.4 points and 11.6 rebounds. With the Knicks missing Robinson up front, Thompson will get to avoid one of the more prolific shot blockers in the league. After scoring at least 40.4 Yahoo points in three straight games, he's once again primed for a productive evening.
Aron Baynes, PHO vs. BKN ($17): No one could have imagined that Baynes would play this well filling in for the suspended Deandre Ayton. He's scored at least 20 points in three of his last four games and is averaging 17.6 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.6 assists and one block since taking over as the starting center. The Nets have had a history of giving up big performances to centers the last couple of seasons, leaving Baynes as a very intriguing option at this price.
Center to Avoid
Dwight Howard, LAL vs. TOR ($17): Howard has certainly outplayed JaVale McGee, earning himself more time in the middle for the Lakers. With that being said, he's still only averaging 21 minutes a night, which severely limits his upside. It won't help his cause he has to play the defensive-minded Marc Gasol in this contest. With Baynes checking in at the same price and receiving a much more significant role for his team, don't even think about adding Howard to your entry.