There are 11 games on the schedule Friday, including a matchup between the Heat and Celtics, who just played each other Tuesday. Let’s highlight some players to consider for your Yahoo lineups, as well as a few to possibly avoid.
Devin Booker, Suns vs. Rockets ($44): Booker couldn’t have looked any better in his last outing with 51 points against the Bulls. He shot 20-for-25 from the field and didn’t even play in the fourth quarter because the Suns had built up such a big lead. With averages of 33.9 points, 6.7 rebounds and 5.7 assists per game over his last seven games, Booker could dominate a Rockets team that comes in with the league’s third-worst defensive rating.
T.J. McConnell, Pacers vs. Jazz ($13): Tyrese Haliburton (groin) is listed as questionable. If he can’t go, McConnell could step into the starting five or at least log significant minutes. That would make him one of the best value plays on the slate. Even if Haliburton plays, McConnell has managed at least 30.1 Yahoo points in two of the last three games. The Jazz also have the sixth-worth defensive rating, so this is a matchup where he could do well.
Guard to Avoid
Russell Westbrook, Lakers vs. Bucks ($26): The move to the second unit hasn’t helped Westbrook’s fantasy value. Over the last four games, he’s scored 25.4 Yahoo points or fewer three times. Facing a Bucks team with the NBA’s best defensive rating likely won’t help his cause.
Zion Williamson, Pelicans vs. Spurs ($40): The Pelicans are expected to receive some reinforcements for this game with CJ McCollum (conditioning) listed as probable. However, they’ll be without Brandon Ingram (toe) and Herbert Jones (ankle). That should mean plenty of shot attempts for Williamson in a matchup between two teams ranked inside the top-11 in pace of play.
AJ Griffin, Nuggets vs. Hawks ($10): The Hawks have lost two starters with John Collins (ankle) expected to miss at least two weeks and De’Andre Hunter (hip) out one week. That should leave added playing time for Griffin, who’s showed promise when given an extended run. Across three games where he’s logged at least 30 minutes, he’s provided 19.3 points, 3.7 rebounds and 2.3 steals.
Forward to Avoid
Bol Bol, Magic vs. Cavs ($25): Bol’s production has been inconsistent of late with at least 41.2 Yahoo points three times in the last six outings. However, he didn’t post more than 23.3 in any of the other three games during that stretch. The Cavs boasts the second-best defensive rating, so this could end up being one of Bol’s more disappointing stat lines.
Pascal Siakam, Raptors vs. Nets ($41): The Nets don’t offer much size up front, making them an ideal matchup for Siakam. When he went up against them earlier this season, he recorded 37 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists in 37 minutes. It’ll be difficult for Siakam to provide another triple-double, but this matchup still leaves him with a high floor.
Kelly Olynyk, Pacers vs. Jazz ($21): Olynyk is one of the reasons why the Jazz have exceeded expectations. He’s been locked in of late with at least 30.7 Yahoo points in five of the last six games. Olynyk is averaging 29 minutes for the season and the Pacers have played at the third-fastest pace, so he should have significant opportunities to provide value.
Center to Avoid
Nikola Vucevic, CHI at GS ($28): The Bulls are struggling. Facing the Warriors on the road isn’t going to help matters. Although Vucevic has been racking up rebounds in bunches, his average of 15.6 points would be his lowest mark since 2016-17. His usage rate is down to 21.3 percent, which has contributed to him averaging a modest 34.9 Yahoo points per game. Vucevic’s salary doesn’t come at much of a discount, so his limited scoring upside might make him someone to avoid.
* * *
Mike Barner 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.