After a teeny tiny two-game slate on Thursday, we’ve got 12 contests on Friday evening. But, as my Uncle Ben used to say, with great schedule comes even greater injury report. He was a wise man, because there are so, so, so many big names either already ruled out or currently questionable. Make sure to keep an eye on the news.
Let’s dive in.
SF/PF Jaden McDaniels, Charlotte Hornets at Memphis Grizzlies, $4,500
The high profile members of the Hornets are dropping like flies at the moment. LaMelo Ball (ankle) has yet to make his 2022-23 debut thanks to a lingering issue, Terry Rozier ($7,900; ankle) is once again listed as doubtful to suit up on Friday and, most recently, Gordon Hayward (shoulder) found his way to Charlotte’s IR after not being able to play the second half in Wednesday’s loss to Chicago. It’s all pretty bleak. Still, someone is going to benefit from all that opportunity, and it seems like McDaniels is that man. In 35.6 minutes against the Bulls, McDaniels hoisted up 18 field goal attempts and registered a 24.4% usage rate. The forward is also averaging 0.92 DKFP per minute without Rozier and Hayward on the floor this season, so he’s almost a lock 5x value should he see over 30 minutes in Memphis.
PG/SF Edmond Sumner, Brooklyn Nets at Washington Wizards, $3,300
This is a dangerous spot to try and exploit. There’s just so many variables. First and foremost, we’ve yet to see the Nets play without Kyrie Irving, who was finally suspended on Thursday night for his recent antisemitic behaviors. We’ve also only seen one game with Jacque Vaughn at the helm of Brooklyn. However, in that loss to the Bulls, it did seem like Vaughn had a soft-spot for Sumner, who appeared to be the team’s backup point guard with Ben Simmons (knee) unavailable. Sumner logged a healthy 22.0 minutes off the bench, dishing out five assists. Maybe the Nets’ rotation changes significantly if Seth Curry ($4,700; ankle) plays through a questionable tag on Friday, but as things currently stand, I think there’s a possibility Sumner even starts versus the Wizards. At this price, that would make him immediately viable.
PG/SG De’Anthony Melton, Philadelphia 76ers vs. New York Knicks, $4,400
Regardless of whether or not Joel Embiid ($10,200; illness) plays in this one, Melton’s going to have a massive role for the 76ers. Heck, Melton’s started two of Philadelphia’s past three games, averaging an impressive 31.4 DKFP when given that opportunity. He had been filling in for Embiid in a small-ball lineup with P.J. Tucker ($3,600) at center, yet even if Embiid’s ready to return on Friday, Melton will surely now be starting in place of James Harden (foot), who is set to miss the next month. If both are missing against the Knicks? It’s only a 30 possession sample, but Melton’s produced 1.41 DKFP per minute so far in 2022-23. The 24-year-old is a knock down shooter from distance — he’s hitting threes at a 40.7% clip — and he contributes on the defensive end, as his 4.5% steal rate leads the NBA. Melton’s just as solid an asset as you’ll find for less that $5K.
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