Happy New Year! The boys are back in town. What a great start to 2022! Lance Stephenson signed a 10-day contract with the Indiana Pacers where he played his first four seasons in the NBA and Kyrie Irving played his first game of the season for Brooklyn. The cool thing? These two things happened in the same game as the Nets beat the Pacers 129-121. Kyrie put up 38.75 Draftkings points in 31 minutes at $8900 while Lance recored 41.75 Draftkings points good for 13x at the minimum price of $3000 (that’s a gpp winner)! Let’s see if we can find tonight’s Lance.

If you’re new to this article, I break down tonight’s four-game NBA slate and give you my starting five for both FanDuel and Draftkings.  These will be my core plays (guys I’ll be playing in my lineups with my money) for hitting the cash line in 50/50s and double-up contests.  If you’re looking for GPP winning plays you’ll have to follow me on Twitter (@TimmySperos) and then we can talk. At the end of the article, I’ll have a pool of three to five players I like that you can use to fill in the rest of your lineups. It’s important to have a process in DFS so let’s review the strategies you should be thinking about.

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Strategies

  1. Focus on teams with high game totals and a high pace of play. On tonight’s slate, theSuns play at a pace of 100.9possessions per game (fastest on the slate) while the Clippers will be playing without Paul George again. A nice game to attack for value.
  2. Select players from high game totals who play a lot of minutes and have high usage rates or FPP (fantasy points per minute). Over time, when comparing two players with similar salaries, choose minutes over a hot hand. It’s the correct thing to do.
  3. NBA may be the toughest DFS sport to play for a few reasons. Number one is time. Throughout the season players will get ruled out for rest, injury, or health and safety protocols. This tends to happen shortly before lock or even after lock as we experienced in the past. It’s imperative that you make yourself available for the 15 minutes before lock or you may lose some money for a simple user error.   

OK now that you know the basics, it’s time for tonight’s slam dunks.

Tonight’s four-game slate: 

Game BOS @ NYK DET @ MEM [email protected] NOP LAC @ PHX
Time 7:30 PM ET 8:00 PM ET 9:00 PM ET 10:00 PM ET
Total 207 218.5 213.5 221

The Starting Five

Chris Paul, PG, PHX, (DK $7300, FD $7800)

Wow, this price is just too cheap. Paul was priced at $9700 just a few weeks ago. Devin Booker is in, Deandre Ayton is out. Paul averages 1.19 fantasy points per minute (FP/M) on the season and with Ayton off the court he averages 1.27, a small bump. In his last eight games going back to 2019 vs. LAC he’s had two 50+ fantasy point nights. CP3 has a solid floor with a huge ceiling if the Clippers can keep this one close. The Suns are favored by 10.5 points.

Jordan Poole, PG/SG, GSW (DK $5800, FD $5700)

New Orleans gives up 48 Draftkings points per game to combo guards and have the seventh-worst defensive rating in the league. Steph Curry is questionable for tonight and news is leaning that he’ll sit this one out. In a small sample size of just 23 minutes, Poole has a 33% usage rate with Curry off the court. Poole averages 1.00 FP/M on the season and has some big upside tonight if Curry does indeed sit.

Marcus Morris, SF/PF, LAC (DK $5600, FD $6900) 

, PF/C, NOP (DK $4500, FD $6700)

Herb Jones has quietly solidified a role with the starters in New Orleans (unless Zion ever returns). He’s not a big usage guy at only 13% but he’s played at least 34 minutes in four of his last five games and has recored at least 27 Draftkings points in all five. The stat I like from Jones is 17 combined blocks and steals over his last four games. If he’s going to give you eight points on Draftkings from defensive stats at $4500, you take it. His price on FanDuel is a bit high and is more of a GPP play on that site.

Trey Lyles, PF/C, DET (DK $5000, FD $4900) 

Not the sexiest name on the list but Trey Lyles is now the starting center in Detroit. With Jerami Grant and Kelly Olynyk still out the front court for the Pistons is depleted. Isaiah Stewart didn’t play last night and is questionable for tonight, I think he sits again, but what do I know? In the last three games he’s played in, Lyles minutes were 37, 34, and 24 (blowout, didn’t play in the 4th). I anticipate he’ll get to 33-37 minutes tonight and at .95 FP/M Lyles should return solid value.

Other guys on my radar:

Feel free to hit me up on Twitter if you have any questions or need help with lineup building. Good luck tonight and I’ll see you guys next week!

– Cousin Timmy

@TimmySperos