NBA DFS Picks Breakdown (Wednesday, Jan. 4): Huge Incoming Game for Steven Adams

Wednesday features a 12-game slate starting at 7 pm ET.

Let’s dive into some of the top plays on the slate using the FantasyLabs tools and metrics.

Also, don’t forget that for large-field tournaments, you can use our Lineup Optimizer to effortlessly create up to 300 lineups, or use our Lineup Builder if you like to hand-build your lineups.

Note: Projections and Leverages Scores/Ratings may change throughout the day after this article is posted. The NBA DFS landscape changes quickly.

Consult the NBA Player Models directly for any updates as we get closer to lock. Use the PrizePicks promo code LABS to get a $100 sign-up bonus for NBA player props.

NBA DFS Point Guard Picks

Stud

De’Aaron Fox is in the midst of arguably the best year of his career. He’s averaging 23.8 points, 5.9 assists, and 4.6 rebounds per game while shooting more than 50% from the field. He’s a big part of the team’s turnaround this season, with the Kings currently residing in fifth place in the Western Conference. Fox has averaged 1.25 DraftKings points per minute this season, and he has scored at least 44.25 DraftKings points in three of his past four games.

He’s in a great spot for another big performance on Wednesday. The Kings and Hawks both play fast, and this game features a 245-point total and just a 1.5-point spread. The Hawks have allowed the 10th-most fantasy points per game to opposing point guards this season, so this is a phenomenal spot for Fox to go off.


Value

The Magic are going to finish serving all of the suspensions they incurred for last week’s skirmish with the Pistons. Franz Wagner is among the four players who will serve their suspension, while four other players are out due to injury. Ultimately, the team is expected to have just nine active players for this contest.

That should result in a few additional minutes Cole Anthony. He’s already been a solid source of value recently, scoring at least 28.25 DraftKings points in three of his past four games, and he’s averaging 1.04 DraftKings points per minute this season. If he can approach 30 minutes in this contest, he’s a great bet to return value against the Thunder. Not only is OKC on the second leg of a back-to-back, but Shai Gilgeous-Alexander missed their last game with an illness. There’s a chance he could be out for the second straight night.


Fast Break

Markelle Fultz is another potential option for the shorthanded Magic. He’s currently projected for 32 minutes in our NBA Models, and he’s averaged 1.04 FanDuel points per minute over the past month. His matchup with the Thunder results in an Opponent Plus/Minus of +3.15, and his 72% Bargain Rating makes him slightly underpriced.

Jordan Poole took a backseat to Clay Thompson on Monday, but Poole continues to be the team’s offensive focal point. He posted an average usage rate of 39.9% over his past eight games, which gives him an elite ceiling at his current price tag. The Warriors also drew an excellent matchup Wednesday vs. the Pistons, who rank 29th in defensive efficiency.

NBA DFS Shooting Guard Picks

Stud

Jalen Brunson recently missed games with hip soreness, but the Knicks wasted no team throwing him back into the deep end of the pool. He racked up 39 minutes in his first game back, and he finished with 24 points on a 33% usage rate. Brunson has averaged 1.12 DraftKings points per minute this season, and he should continue to play all the minutes he can handle RJ Barrett out of the lineup.

Brunson is the only point guard eligible on DraftKings, but he has eligibility at both guard spots on FanDuel.


Value

Caris LeVert still managed to post a positive Plus/Minus on DraftKings in his last game, but his 22.75 DraftKings points still felt like a disappointment. Of course, it’s pretty difficult to rack up fantasy points when one of your teammates scores 71 points. LeVert had at least 30.25 DraftKings points in each of his previous two outings, and he should draw another start on Wednesday with Darius Garland doubtful. Expect him to return to his previous level of production, and his 95% Bargain Rating makes him an elite value on DraftKings.


Fast Break

Immanuel Quickely is another potential option in the Knicks’ backcourt. The return of Brunson did little to diminish his role on Sunday, with Quickley racking up 35.8 minutes. He’s averaged 0.95 DraftKings points per minute this season, and he’s projected for another 35 minutes in our NBA Models. It’s tough to pass up that kind of potential at just $6,200.

The Pelicans are back to being without Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingramwhich means CJ McCollum is going to have to carry the load offensively. He posted a 30.6% usage rate and a 36.2% assist rate in five games without both players, resulting in an average of 41.52 FanDuel points per game. He has plenty of viability in an elite matchup vs. the Rockets, who rank 28th in defensive efficiency.

NBA DFS Small Forward Picks

Stud

Paolo Banchero is the top stud target for the shorthanded Magic. While they’re thin everywhere, they’re particularly thin in the frontcourt. Mo Wagner, Bol Boland Admiral Schofield are all unavailable this evening, leaving Banchero, Wendell Carter Jr.and Mo Bamba to handle most of the minutes.

Banchero has also been one of the biggest beneficiaries with Franz Wagner off the floor this season. He’s increased his usage rate by a team-high +4.1% in that situation, resulting in an average of 1.13 DraftKings points per minute. He has an elite combination of floor and ceiling given his massive expected workload on this slate.


Value

The Hornets are dealing with some key injuries at the moment. Kelly Oubre is going to miss an extended period with a hand injury, while Gordon Hayward is doubtful with a hamstring injury. They don’t have a ton of depth to start with on the wing, so the team will be significantly shorthanded if Hayward can’t go.

That would open up a nice chunk of playing time for Jalen McDaniels. McDaniels has already been a solid part of their offense recently, racking up at least 22.5 DraftKings points in three of his past four games. He’s coming off 31.3 minutes in his last contest, and McDaniels has averaged 0.92 DraftKings points per minute over the past month. It’s too cheap at $4,400.


Fast Break

Harrison Barnes is coming off a big performance on Tuesday, finishing with 36.0 DraftKings points vs. the Jazz. He hasn’t displayed that kind of ceiling for most of the year, but he’s tough to ignore at $4,800 on DraftKings in the best matchup of the day.

Trey Murphy III stands out as underpriced on FanDuel, where his $4,900 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 76%. He averaged 27.7 FanDuel points in four games without Zion and Ingram, and that kind of production would be very usable at his current salary.

NBA DFS Power Forward Picks

Stud

Jaren Jackson Jr. is still working his way into the Grizzlies’ rotation. The young big man missed most of the early season, and his minutes have been capped at around 30 per game since he returned to the lineup. However, Jackson is capable of doing a ton of damage in limited minutes. He’s arguably the best shot blocker in the entire league, and he ranks fourth on the team with a 23.4% usage rate. Add it all up, and he averaged 1.29 DraftKings points per minute this season.

The Grizzlies also drew one of the best matchups of the day vs. the Hornets. They’ve played at the fastest pace in the league since LaMelo Ball returned from injury, and the Grizzlies’ implied team total of 122.0 ranks second on the slate.


Value

Naji Marshall is probably the best per-dollar option for the Pelicans on Wednesday. He’s averaged 31.2 minutes and 28.05 DraftKings points in games without Zion and Ingram, and he’s priced very fairly across the industry. Marshall has also seen an uptick in production recently, averaging 0.85 DraftKings points per minute over the past month.


Fast Break

Jrue Holiday will rest on the second leg of a back-to-back, so it should be the Giannis Antetokounmpo show on Wednesday. To be fair, it’s been the Giannis show for basically the past week, with the superstar racking up at least 81.0 DraftKings points in three straight games. It has significant upside, but it comes with a significant price tag.

Julius Randle has also been incredible for fantasy purposes of late. He’s increased his production to 1.46 DraftKings points per minute over the past month, and he’s posted an average Plus/Minus of +9.04 over his past 10 games. He has gotten significantly more expensive of late, but he has scored at least 58.0 DraftKings points in six straight games. He’s still underpriced on FanDuel, where his $9,900 salary comes with a Bargain Rating of 95%.

NBA DFS Center Picks

Stud

There are plenty of studs worth paying up for on Wednesday, which is not surprising for a 12-game slate. However, there isn’t a ton of value at the moment. That could change as the day progresses, but for now, it’s hard to lock a $10k+ player into your lineup.

Nikola Vucevic is a nice alternative if you’re looking to pay up at the position. He’s been a very consistent performer for the Bulls of late, exceeding salary-based expectations in seven of his past nine games. He has at least 41.25 DraftKings points in three of his past four outings, and the Nets represent a solid matchup for opposing centers.


Value

Steven Adams stands out as one of the best value options of the day. He’s been an absolute beast on the boards recently, grabbing at least 17 rebounds in three straight games. He’s unsurprisingly finished with at least 42.25 DraftKings points in all three contests, and you’ll gladly take that kind of production at $5,400.

Adams also saw a few additional minutes with Brandon Clarke sidelined on Sunday, and he can do serious damage with extra playing time vs. the Hornets. They’ve been the best matchup in fantasy for opposing centers this season, allowing the most fantasy points per game to the position. They also allow the most rebounds per game to opposing centers, so they play right into Adams’ biggest strength.


Fast Break

The Pelicans have a pair of interesting center options Jonas Valanciunas and Willy Hernangomez. Valanciunas is the team’s top big man with Williamson sidelined, but he still averaged just 27.1 minutes in games without his two star teammates. That gives him a wide range of outcomes on this slate. Hernangomez will play even less, but he’s also a really good per-minute producer. He’s also significantly cheaper at just $3,800, so he’s a potential punt play if you’re looking to pay up for one of the studs.

With the Magic extremely thin in the frontcourt, Wendell Carter Jr. could be looking at a monster workload on Wednesday. He’s averaged 1.06 FanDuel points per minute this season, and while he’s only projected for 30 minutes in our NBA Models, he has the upside to play significantly more. That gives him a solid floor and ceiling at $6,500.

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