Daily Fantasy

NBA DFS Picks: Yahoo plays and strategy for Dec. 12

RotoWire gives insight on the best DFS picks for Yahoo fantasy basketball.

Barner expects Jimmy Butler to have a strong night on Monday as the Heat travel to Indiana to face the Pacers.

The NBA starts off the week with seven games on the schedule Monday. Luka Doncic (quadriceps), who did not play Saturday against the Bulls, is expected to return for a matchup against the Thunder. Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving sat out for rest against the Pacers on Saturday, but both are expected to be back in action for a battle with the Wizards. As far as exciting matchups go, one of the best games on the slate figures to be the Clippers hosting the Celtics. Let’s dig into the entire slate and highlight some players to consider for your Yahoo lineups, as well as a few to possibly avoid.


Damian Lillard, POR vs. MIN ($39): The Trail Blazers and Timberwolves also played each other Saturday, with Lillard scoring 52.6 Yahoo points over 41 minutes. That came on the heels of him scoring 67.8 Yahoo points against the Nuggets in his previous game. Healthy again and playing a ton of minutes, Lillard enters this rematch with a high floor.

Jaylen Nowell, MIN at POR ($12): Nowell couldn’t get much going when these two teams met Saturday, providing six points and two assists. He logged only 16 minutes, which was rare considering he had averaged 25 minutes over his previous six games. During that span, he provided 17.8 points, 4.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game. If he returns to that more significant role in this game, he has the potential to provide strong value.

Guard to Avoid

Reggie Jackson, LAC vs. BOS ($19): Jackson is expected to return after sitting out Saturday for rest purposes. The Clippers have a mostly clean injury report heading into this matchup, with Norman Powell (groin) being the only player who has been ruled out. As good as that news is for the Clippers, it’s unfavorable for Jackson’s fantasy value, as he has just a 21.6% usage rate this season with more talent around him.


Jimmy Butler, MIA at IND ($36): Butler has missed 10 games this season because of injuries, something that has become a trend since he has played fewer than 60 games in four of the last five seasons. However, he is probable for this game, so expect him to take the floor. He’s posting impressive numbers when he plays, averaging 42.8 Yahoo points. This is a great matchup against the Pacers, who have played at the fourth-fastest pace in the league and rank inside the bottom-10 in defensive rating.

Deni Avdija, WAS vs. BKN ($19): Avdija has stepped up his production, scoring at least 29.2 Yahoo points in three straight games. The common theme has been the absence of Bradley Beal (hamstring), who remains on this injury report for this matchup. If he is out again, Avdija is a solid option at such a reasonable salary.

Forward to Avoid

Kawhi Leonard, LAC vs. BOS ($27): Leonard has been limited to eight games this season and has averaged only 25 minutes across those games. On a positive note, he logged 30 minutes in the last two games he played. Still, it’s unlikely that he plays more minutes than that for at least a little longer, which could cap his upside against a Celtics team that has the eighth-best defensive rating in the league.


Rudy Gobert, MIN at POR ($30): Gobert’s numbers are down in most categories this season as he has tried to adjust to his new surroundings. Now that Karl-Anthony Towns (calf) is out, he is part of a more traditional lineup that hasn’t included essentially two centers. He has looked more comfortable, scoring at least 51.8 Yahoo points in two of the last three games. During that span, he averaged 20.7 points, 14.3 rebounds, 2.3 steals and 1.0 blocks over 35 minutes per game.

Brandon Clarke, MEM vs. ATL ($12): Clarke has a lot of talent, but the Grizzlies just don’t seem comfortable giving him significant playing time regularly. Even when Jaren Jackson was out earlier this season, he wasn’t inserted into the starting lineup or given substantially more minutes. On the bright side, he has logged at least 24 minutes in three of the last four games, and he scored at least 30.1 Yahoo points in all three of those matchups. At near the minimum salary, it might be worth taking a chance that he sees similar playing time again.

Center to Avoid

Zach Collins, SAS vs. CLE ($17): Collins has been starting at center for the Spurs with Jakob Poeltl (knee) out. However, he has provided only 9.2 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists over the last five games in that role. Facing the Cavaliers’ formidable frontcourt duo of Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley likely won’t help his cause.


Mike started covering fantasy sports in 2007, joining RotoWire in 2010. In 2018, he was a finalist for the 2018 FSWA Basketball Writer of the Year award. In addition to RotoWire, Mike has written for Sportsline, Sports Illustrated, DK Live, RealTime Fantasy Sports, Lineup Lab and KFFL.com.