DraftKings NBA: Thursday Picks

DraftKings NBA: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our DraftKings NBA series.

Slate Overview

MIL (-6.5) vs. ATL, O/U: 228.5

GS (-8.5) vs. CLE, O/U: 224.5

BOS (-6) vs. LAL, O/U: 212

SAC vs. PHX (-11.5), O/U: 230.5

The MIL-ATL matchup has some significant injury news to keep an eye on, as Giannis Antetokounmpo and Trae Young are considered questionable. If Young were to miss, I'd expect Brandon Goodwin ($4,500) to be the most popular player on the slate, as he's played well while seeing big minutes in consecutive starts in place of Young. 

The SAC-PHX game makes sense to target, as it tips off last at 10:00 p.m. EST and features the highest total on the slate, with the Suns in a pace-up spot and the Kings on a back-to-back. There isn't much that stands out for cheap value on this slate, and it could be beneficial to keep rosters flexible, as there have been late scratches on a nightly basis, and the LAL-BOS game starts at the same time.  

Injuries to Monitor

Giannis Antetokounmpo (knee): QUESTIONABLE

Giannis hasn't played since April 2nd, but he practiced on Tuesday and could return tonight. Keep an eye out for news, as it's possible he'd be on a minutes limit if he plays. Bobby Portis has been starting at power forward in his absence.

Trae Young (calf): QUESTIONABLE

Young has missed consecutive games due to a bruised calf and is listed as questionable for tonight. Brandon Goodwin ($4,500) has been starting at point guard. 

Collin Sexton (groin): QUESTIONABLE

Sexton has missed back-to-back games with a strained groin, and his status for tonight is still uncertain. Darius Garland and Isaac Okoro started in the backcourt yesterday. 

Richaun Holmes (hamstring): OUT

Holmes will miss at least the next two games as he recovers from a strained hamstring. Damion Jones got the start at center last night while Hassan Whiteside played 23 minutes off the bench.

Andre Drummond, Kyle Kuzma and Dennis Schroder: PROBABLE

Keep an eye out for news and starting lineups, but all three Lakers are expected to play. 

Kelly Oubre (wrist): QUESTIONABLE

Oubre has missed three consecutive games dealing with a wrist injury and his status for tonight is uncertain. Kent Bazemore has been starting at small forward in his place.

Markieff Morris (ankle): QUESTIONABLE

Morris missed Tuesday's game due to a sprained ankle and is listed as questionable for tonight. Talen Horton-Tucker got the start at power forward in his absence. 

Elite Players

Guard:

Stephen Curry  ($10,600)

If Giannis is ruled out tonight, Curry will be the only player on the slate with a salary above $10K. He's earned the salary increase with back-to-back incredible performances that saw him score 67 and 69 DK points. He's made a whopping 29 three-pointers in his last three games, as he's taken on a larger role with Warriors fighting to make the playoffs. He only needed 29 minutes to break the slate yesterday, so a potential blowout against Cleveland tonight isn't too concerning. 

De'Aaron Fox ($9,700)

Fox's salary has reached a season-high, and rightfully so, as he's topped 60 DK points in consecutive games. He's been very consistent, as he's put up at least 50 DK points in four of his last five games while seeing at least 38 minutes in six straight. The Kings are in a tough spot against the Suns, but there aren't many spend-up options on the slate tonight, and Fox has considerable upside regardless of matchup. 

Center:

Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,800)

Giannis hasn't played since April 2nd, although he practiced on Tuesday and his status for tonight is uncertain. If he plays, he's likely to be on a minutes restriction, and while he still has upside in limited minutes, I'll be looking to spend elsewhere. 

Clint Capela ($8,900)

If Giannis were to miss, Capela would be the only center on the slate with a salary above $8K. It has now reached its highest point in more than a month, and $8,900 seems a bit too steep for a matchup against the Bucks, especially when there is some decent value at center in the $6K range. 

Forward:

Jayson Tatum ($9,400)

Tatum has recently played well, topping 46 DK points in four consecutive games while going off for 75.5 last week. There is a $2,300 gap between Tatum and the next power forward, so I'd expect him to be popular, even though the matchup against the Lakers has a much lower total (212) than the other three games on the slate.

Expected Chalk

Stephen Curry ($10,600)

Curry is the only player on the slate with a five-figure salary, and he's coming off back-to-back special performances. Recency bias and the fact that raw points will be most important on a smaller slate tonight should lead to Curry being quite popular. 

Brandon Goodwin ($4,500), if Trae Young is out

As it stands, there isn't much that stands out for cheap value tonight. Goodwin has put up over 30 DK points in consecutive starts while seeing 37 minutes in each, and the salary is still very affordable, so if Young sits again, I'd expect him to be the most popular player on the slate.

Value Picks

Draymond Green ($7,100)

Green is coming off 61 DK points as he dished out 16 assists on his way to a triple-double. He should be good value again tonight in a favorable matchup against the Cavs.

Deandre Ayton ($6,700)

Ayton continues to be consistent as he's posted double-doubles in five of his last six games while topping 40 DK points three times in that span. The Suns are in good a spot tonight against a bad Kings defense. 

Dennis Schroder ($6,300)

Schroder's salary has dropped to its lowest point in 10 games, but his upside remains the same, as the Lakers are still shorthanded. It's only a matter of time before he smashes value, and he's likely to go somewhat overlooked tonight in a tough matchup against the Celtics, but Kemba Walker is a below-average defender. 

Kevin Love ($6,200)

Love is coming off a double-double and 40 DK points in 27 minutes last night. It's possible he could rest for the second game of a back-to-back, but if he plays, I'd expect him to be less popular than he should be, considering he has ceiling potential, even in limited minutes at his depressed salary.

Hassan Whiteside ($3,400)

I never feel comfortable rostering Whiteside, and don't feel great about recommending him either, as it's always possible he doesn't even see the floor. However, he was great last night in 23 minutes off the bench, and the Kings are still missing Richaun Holmes, so they will need a big body to battle with Deandre Ayton tonight. 

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ryan Belongia
Ryan Belongia writes about fantasy sports for RotoWire
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