With the Thunder currently tied for 5th in the Western Conference, as well as having the same amount of losses as the 8tKhris Middletonh seeded Clippers, this is a game the Thunder can’t allow to slip through their fingers like they did in their first meeting in Sacramento. Westbrook went off for 15 points, 11 assists and 15 rebounds in their last matchup against the Kings just to see his team squeak out a 110-107 victory at the buzzer. He’ll be highly owned tonight, but Westbrook has a chance to errupt for another big triple-double.
The Heat will be resting their future Hall-of-Famer Dwayne Wade tonight against Portland, which means Johnson could find himself with an even bigger workload. Over his last two games, Johnson saw 25 minutes per game but with Wade sidelined it wouldn’t be a big surprise to see that get pushed to 30+ minutes. Johnson has great size, quickness and defensive grit to defend both C.J. McCollum and Damian Lillard.
This is a bit of a contrarian play, but at the same time while most people will be on James Harden owners, like myself, with Middleton will hope the knee soreness humanizes the league’s potential MVP. Middleton has a great matchup against a depleted D-League Grizzlies team. It’s not hard to see Middleton finish with a +6 over value.
Ellington is getting right around 20-25 minutes per game right now and with no Wade tonight I would expect him to land on the higher end of those minutes. This is going to be an up-and-down game with 3-point shooting being a big contributor to either team. Over his last two games Ellington has knocked down a combined 7 3-pointers.
The Greek Freak has a very favorable matchup against the Grizzlies where you will see Ben McLemore potentially being his primary defender next to Dillion Brooks. Put him in your lineup.
This is my “I’m playing him everywhere” pick of the day. Brewer seems to have found his footing with his new team while averaging 22.9 FDP over his last two games. He’s facing a Kings team that gives up a lot of wide open 3-pointers and also turns the ball over quite a bit. Both categories are stats that Brewer has the ability to take advantage of and hopefully put together for a good line. Corey Brewer is my must play of the day.
Bertans can put up points quickly and with no LaMarcus Aldridge tonight, he may be asked to do so next to Pau Gasol. Bertans only owes you 22 FDPs and he’s getting to that value with less than 20 minutes of action on most nights. With the Spurs facing a fast paced Rockets team, it wouldn’t be surprising to see them try to keep up with Bertans as the team’s stretch four.
He’s one of my favorite players on the Heat and when Whiteside is sidelined you better believe I have Adebayo in my lineup. Kelly Olynyk healthy and playing again has really brought down his value and production, but the upside is there for him to have a big night. Adebayo could also be the player that brings your lineup to the top of a tournament seeing as his ceiling is at 30+FDPs and his ownership should be under 10%.
I love Gasol’s matchup tonight against a Bucks team that is lacking a big man presence. However, Gasol is on a Grizzlies team that benefits from losing, so if this turns into a runaway game for the Bucks that would not look good for the big man’s night. The game is in Memphis and the Griz do seem to still make games competitive on their home floor and I would expect to see more of the same tonight.