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Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Lineup Strategy for January 15

Stan Son gives his top lineup advice at each position for Friday’s fantasy basketball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings at each position for Friday’s eight-game NBA slate, along with some strategy unique to this slate.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $550K Fadeaway [$100K to 1st]

Point Guard

Worth Paying Up For: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Chicago Bulls ($7,700)

Shai is coming off a brutal 20.4 DKFP game against the Lakers on Wednesday. Now he gets one of the juiciest matchups in the league. The Bulls play at the third-fastest pace while ranking 29th in defensive efficiency. Zooming in closer, they boost the fantasy points per minute to point guards by 12.73%. Shai is averaging 1.16 DKFP per minute and 37.07 DKFP per game. He should bounce back in a big way.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Nickeil Alexander-Walker, New Orleans Pelicans @ Los Angeles Lakers ($4,400)

Alexander-Walker is coming off a 52.5 DKFP explosion on Wednesday vs. the Clippers, so the ownership will be high. With that said, Lonzo Ball is out again while Eric Bledsoe is questionable. If both are out, then it will be tough to fade him at this price as he garnered a 34.2% usage rate last game out. With that said, the matchup with the Lakers is a much tougher one. The Lakers are best in defensive efficiency and negate the fantasy points per minute to point guards by 8.32%. The Clippers? They give a boost of 13.13%. Don’t expect another 50-burger but he should be able to pay off his salary if both Bledsoe and Ball are out.

Shooting Guard

Worth Paying Up For: Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls @ Oklahoma City Thunder ($9,500)

LaVine has been en fuego the past three games, going for 45.75, 59.25, and 66.75 DKFP. Are we getting a 70-burger tonight? He’s averaged 38.9 minutes, 38.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 0.7 steals, and 0.3 blocks. He’s been hoisting up 24 shots, with 11 being from downtown, and the usage rate has been 32%. This game could be a shootout at the OK Corral, with Lavine and Gilgeous-Alexander going mano-a-mano.

Best Bang For Your Buck: De’Anthony Melton, Memphis Grizzlies @ Minnesota Timberwolves ($4,300)

Against these same Timberwolves on Wednesday, Melton contributed 15 points, one rebound, four assists, one block, and two steals in 25 minutes, good for 28.25 DKFP. Melton contributes across the board and garners a decent usage rate of around 20%. It’s all about the minutes, as he hasn’t received 25 minutes of playing time once this season. This obviously limits his ceiling, but the floor is solid. On the season, Melton is averaging 0.97 DKFP per minute.

Small Forward

Worth Paying Up For: Kawhi Leonard, Los Angeles Clippers @ Sacramento Kings ($9,600)

The Kings play at the 10th fastest pace and are dead-last in defensive efficiency. Over the past six games, they have given up 130 points on average. Kawhi is averaging 1.28 DKFP per minute and has gone over 50 DKFP the past two games.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Isaac Okoro, Cleveland Cavaliers vs. New York Knicks ($3,900)

I’m not crazy about any of the sub-$5K small forwards, so here we are. Okoro is a low usage player but has seen an increase with Collin Sexton and Darius Garland out of the lineup. A sub-10% usage player normally, that number has spiked up to 18% recently. He was averaging around five shots per game but has been hoisting up over 10 shots the last two games. On the season, he’s averaging a gross 0.44 DKFP per minute but he’s played 36, 40, 34, and 39 minutes over the past four games.

Power Forward

Worth Paying Up For: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Dallas Mavericks ($10,800)

The matchup isn’t great, as Dallas is 24th in pace and tied for first in defensive efficiency. Giannis scoffs at matchups, though. He’s scored over 60 DKFP in four games this season. He has four games with 41 or fewer DKFP. All of those games were blowouts in which he played fewer than 30 minutes per game. DraftKings Sportsbook has the Bucks favored by 6 points with an O/U of 227. There’s a chance with Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis that this game stays competitive. If so, then Giannis could feast. On the season, he is averaging 1.63 DKFP per minute.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Aleksej Pokusevski, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Chicago Bulls ($3,300)

This play is predicated on Darius Bazley sitting out. He injured his ankle during the third quarter of Wednesday’s game and the severity of the injury has not been mentioned. It’s a quick turnaround so there’s a chance Pokusevski gets a little more playing time, who produced a career-high of 25 DKFP in 21 minutes on Wednesday. On the season, Pokusevski is averaging 0.80 DKFP per minute. If he gets the start or an increase in minutes, he will smash this price tag.


Worth Paying Up For: Nikola Vucevic, Orlando Magic @ Boston Celtics ($9,000)

Vucevic has scored 53.25 and 58.25 DKFP in the last two games. On the season, he’s gone over 50 DKFP four times and is averaging 1.44 DKFP per minute. The Celtics are usually good at suppressing fantasy production to centers, but over the last six matchups against Vucevic, they have allowed him to notch a double-double in every game while scoring at least 20 points in three.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Jonas Valanciunas, Memphis Grizzlies @ Minnesota Timberwolves ($7,100)

The Timberwolves are 27th in defensive efficiency and are the most generous to opposing centers, as they boost fantasy points per minute production by a whopping 20.46%. These two teams played on Wednesday and, what do you know? Valanciunas notched his first 50-burger DKFP of the season. More of the same should be expected in this one.

Overall Lineup Strategy

The bubble-less NBA is turning into the wild west ... just like NFL and MLB were. So first and foremost, following the news is always a must in the NBA, but now it’s even more important. Make sure to follow @dklive on Twitter and download the DK Live app to stay up-to-date with all the latest news. I’d like to get exposure to Clippers, Thunder, and Grizzlies players, as they are all in pace up spots against teams that play poor defense.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $550K Fadeaway [$100K to 1st]

Injury Report


Evan Fournier (back)

Michael Carter-Williams (foot)

Markelle Fultz (knee)

Kemba Walker (knee)

Jayson Tatum (COVID-19 protocols)

Robert Williams (COVID-19 protocols)

Frank Ntilikina (knee)

Collin Sexton (ankle)

Darius Garland (shoulder)

Kevin Love (calf)

Dorian Finney-Smith (COVID-19 protocols)

Josh Richardson (COVID-19 protocols)

Jaren Jackson Jr. (knee)

Ricky Rubio (COVID-19 protocols)

Joe Ingles (Achilles)

Lonzo Ball (knee)


Jaylen Brown (COVID-19 protocols)

Daniel Theis (COVID-19 protocols)

Alec Burks (ankle)

Reggie Bullock (hip)

Jarrett Allen (trade)

Taurean Prince (trade)

Maxi Kleber (COVID-19 protocols)

Dwight Powell (COVID-19 protocols)

Ja Morant (ankle)

Karl-Anthony Towns (wrist)

Lauri Markkanen (COVID-19 protocols)

Darius Bazley (ankle)

Derrick Favors (knee)

Rajon Rondo (knee)

LeBron James (ankle)

Anthony Davis (back)

Lou Williams (hip)

Eric Bledsoe (eye)

Buddy Hield (ankle)


Kristaps Porzingis (ankle)

Jrue Holiday (ankle)

Andre Drummond (Achilles)

Otto Porter Jr. (back)

Karl-Anthony Towns (wrist)

Josh Okogie (hamstring)

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $550K Fadeaway [$100K to 1st]

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is sontzu) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.

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