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FanDuel NBA: Friday Value Plays

Alex Barutha

Alex writes primarily about the NBA for RotoWire. His work has appeared on CBS Sports, Bleacher Report and other sites. He enjoys both year-long and daily fantasy. Vince Carter and Alex both first dunked during their respective sophomore years of high school.

Fridayís slate of Game 3s features no shortage of star talent around the $10,000 mark, including LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, John Wall and Victor Oladipo. Two of those players are featured below. Iíve also included two mid-level options and one minimum option to help you find value at each tier.

Point Guard

John Wall, WAS vs. TOR ($10,200)
Wall has struggled shooting the ball in this series, knocking down just 40.5 percent of his attempts from the field. However, heís still managed to score 26.0 points per game, largely due to the fact heís visited the free throw line 21 times, knocking down 19 of those attempts. Heís also a solid 3-for-7 from beyond the arc, though all of his makes from distance came during Game 1 -- certainly his better of the two performances, as he also handed out 15 dimes and registered a combined six steals/blocks in that contest.

Overall, despite his poor shooting from the field, heís still managed to average 54.2 fantasy points during the series through great passing and top-notch defense. Assuming he can continue passing well and racking up defensive stats, a massive Game 3 at home isnít out of the question if he can be more efficient from the field. Wall has played better at home this season as well, bumping his average up by 6.4 fantasy points while in D.C.

Shooting Guard

Jaylen Brown, BOS at MIL ($6,800)
Brown has been one of the focal points of Bostonís offense through Games 1 and 2 of the series against Milwaukee. Though Game 1 went into overtime, Brown actually took more shots during Game 2 and almost had an identical fantasy performance. Heís averaging 20.5 shots per game in the series, knocking down 51.2 percent of them -- including 41.2 percent from beyond the arc -- for an average of 25.0 points.

Itís possible he regresses to the mean a bit moving forward, but he was an above-average shooter during the regular season, drilling 46.5 percent of his looks from the field and 39.5 percent from deep. So, his past two performances arenít anything too out of the ordinary, other than the number of attempts themselves, which figure to stay elevated. He hasnít done too much other than score during the series, however, averaging just 4.5 rebounds, 2.5 assists and a combined 1.0 steal/block. Regardless, heís still managed to average a solid 35.1 fantasy points per game.

Small Forward

Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL vs. BOS ($11,500)
Similarly to LeBron James, who I also think is a good play on this slate, the team Antetokounmpo is facing simply hasnít had an answer for him through the first two games of the series. The Greek Freak has taken 21 and 17 shots, respectively, over Games 1 and 2, converting on an absurd 63.2 percent of those attempts. Heís also gotten to the free-throw line frequently, averaging 8.5 makes on 12.5 attempts (68.0 percent).

Aside from averaging 32.5 points during the series, Antetokounmpo is also flirting with a triple-double, posting 11.0 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game. As expected, heís also contributing defensively, totaling four steals and a block in the series. Overall, heís averaged 60.9 fantasy points thus far in the playoffs and there doesnít seem to be much indicating that could slow down. For what itís worth, heís also played better at home this season, averaging 53.8 fantasy points at the BMO Harris Bradley Center compared to 49.5 fantasy points when elsewhere.

Power Forward

Serge Ibaka, TOR at WAS ($6,300)
Ibaka has had a steady role for the Raptors over the first two games of the series, taking 11 shots in both contests, including four threes in Game 1 and three shots from distance in Game 2. However, from a scoring perspective, he had a much better first game than second game, posting 23 points and 10 points, respectively -- the difference mostly coming down to two more made three-pointers and three more made free-throws.

Aside from his consistent shot attempts, Ibaka has also been a constant force on the glass and blocking shots, posting 12 boards and two blocks in Game 1 and pairing nine rebounds with three swats during Game 2. All the aforementioned production has led him to averaging 38.3 fantasy points -- a great mark relative to his price for Fridayís Game 3.


Tyler Zeller, MIL vs. BOS ($3,500)
Starting center John Henson is doubtful with a back injury for Fridayís contest, making it likely that Zeller gets the starting nod and absorbs most, if not all, of Hensonís minutes. Itís possible Thon Maker draws the start, but heís essentially fallen out of the rotation lately. So even if he does enter the starting five, itís still possible he doesnít see double-digit minutes. Itís also possible interim coach Joe Prunty throws out more lineup combinations with Giannis Antetokounmpo at center, though that could get squashed quickly by coach Brad Stevens deploying an Aron Baynes/Al Horford frontcourt.

Taking all of that into account, Zeller seems like a relatively safe play at minimum price, even if it doesnít come with massive upside. Heís been generally productive when given extended run, averaging 22.9 fantasy points when heís seen at least 22 minutes and 25.4 fantasy points when heís seen at least 25 minutes. If youíre looking to squeeze multiple top-tier players into your lineup Friday (i.e. LeBron, Giannis, Wall), Zeller could end up being the best source of salary relief available.

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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.