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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Targets, Values for January 31

Alex Hunter gives his top studs and value plays at each position for Monday’s fantasy basketball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 7:00 p.m. ET.

On tap for Monday night is an eight-game slate, and DraftKings continues to offer a plethora of huge tournaments. Below are some of my favorite studs and values at each position.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $400K Fadeaway [$100K to 1st]

Point Guard


Darius Garland, Cleveland Cavaliers vs. New Orleans Pelicans, $9,100 - Since Ricky Rubio (knee) went down for the season, Garland has been terrific, leading the Cavs with 43.4 DKFP per game and a 26.6% usage rate. For Monday night, the 22-year-old will be going against a Pelicans’ defense that ranks 22nd in efficiency. Plus, Garland will be on his home floor, where the guard has been 2.4 DKFP per game better than when on the road.

Garland has 50 DKFP upside in this spot and shouldn’t be a popular option for this large slate.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Darius Garland (back) is questionable tonight vs. the Pelicans.

Other Options: Stephen Curry ($11,000), Fred VanVleet ($8,700)


Josh Giddey, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Portland Trail Blazers, $7,300 - Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (ankle) will be unavailable tonight, opening the door for Giddey to flourish with an expanded role. For the three occasions when the rookie has been active sans Gilgeous-Alexander, Giddey has generated 48.4 DKFP per game.

Overall, the 19-year-old provides 1.1 DKFP per minute with SGA off the floor, mostly attributed to a 7.2 percentage point boost to his assist rate. Facing this Blazers’ defense that ranks third to last in efficiency, Giddey is an elite value that needs to be utilized.

Other Options: Anfernee Simons ($7,000), Jordan Poole ($5,500), De’Anthony Melton ($5,000)

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Shooting Guard


Tyrese Haliburton, Sacramento Kings at New York Knicks, $8,500 - If De’Aaron Fox ($8,100; ankle, questionable) is ruled out tonight, Haliburton will be an outstanding GPP target. With Fox inactive Saturday, Haliburton torched a stout Sixers’ defense for a season-high 59.75 DKFP.

The second-year guard has topped 50 DKFP in five of the eight tilts Fox has missed this season and shouldn’t be a common name in large tournaments, given this less than ideal matchup against the slow-paced Knicks.

Other Options: Jaylen Brown ($8,800)


Ty Jerome, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Portland Trail Blazers, $3,300 - In the past three contests SGA has missed, Jerome has entered the starting five and amassed 29.3 DKFP in 33.5 minutes per game. With a 23.4% usage rate, the 24-year-old collects 0.9 DKFP per minute with Gilgeous-Alexander off the court.

If named a starter tonight, Jerome will be a viable punt for all formats against the defensively inept Blazers.

Other Options: Tyler Herro ($6,200), Klay Thompson ($6,000), Nickeil Alexander-Walker ($5,200, if Brandon Ingram is out), Davion Mitchell ($4,900, if De’Aaron Fox is out)

Small Forward


Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat at Boston Celtics, $8,900 - Kyle Lowry (personal) will remain inactive Monday and if we exclude Jan. 19, when Butler was ejected after only 15 minutes of work, the forward is averaging 53.9 DKFP per game with Lowry sidelined.

Butler contributes 1.3 DKFP per minute with Lowry off the court, and he stands out as one of the better high-end values on the slate at this reasonable price point.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Jimmy Butler (ankle) has been ruled out Monday vs. the Celtics.

Other Options: Jayson Tatum ($10,600)


Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Portland Trail Blazers, $6,000 - With Gilgeous-Alexander only available for 17 minutes Friday against the Pacers, Dort took full advantage and posted 47.5 DKFP in the overtime loss. Take Gilgeous-Alexander off the floor this season, and Dort leads the Thunder with a 25% usage rate, which is a 3.6 percentage point upgrade from his season average.

Dort brings a ceiling over 40 DKFP against this soft Blazers defense and is worth a flier in GPPs tonight.

Other Options: Josh Hart ($6,900), Garrett Temple ($3,800, if Ingram is out), Justise Winslow ($3,700, if Nicholas Batum is out), Caleb Martin ($3,500)

Power Forward


Domantas Sabonis, Indiana Pacers vs. Los Angeles Clippers, $9,800 - Even in this difficult matchup vs. the Clippers, who rank eighth in defensive efficiency, Sabonis has to be considered at this sub-$10K price tag. Both Myles Turner (foot) and Malcolm Brogdon (Achilles) will remain sidelined, and in the three starts Sabonis has made without these two starters this season, the big man has supplied 57.7 DKFP per game.

Sabonis scores 1.3 DKFP per minute with Turner and Brogdon off the court this season and is an excellent way of paying up to play contrarian for Monday’s slate. Since returning from a four-game absence this past Friday, Sabonis has only been owned by 4.2% of the field in DraftKings’ main GPP of the night.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Pacers PF/C Domantas Sabonis (health protocols) has been ruled out Monday vs. the Clippers.

Other Options: Pascal Siakam ($9,600)


Robert Covington, Portland Trail Blazers at Oklahoma City Thunder, $5,600 - In these past two with Damian Lillard (core), Larry Nance Jr. (knee) and Nassir Little (shoulder) out, Covington has averaged 30 DKFP in 35 minutes per game.

All three of those players will continue to be unavailable Monday, keeping Covington in a huge role against the Thunder. On DraftKings Sportsbook, the Blazers are small three-point favorites and with 35-40 minutes of action in this projected nail-biter, Covington should be able to grind out over five-times value.

Other Options: Harrison Barnes ($6,200, boost if Fox is out), Herbert Jones ($5,100, if Ingram is out), P.J. Tucker ($3,900)



Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers vs. Memphis Grizzlies, $11,800 - Embiid has been incredible as of late, scoring 66.3 DKFP per game across his past six starts. During this time, Embiid has handled a godly 45.2% usage rate and recorded a whopping 2.0 DKFP per minute.

Now, on the menu for Monday is an uptempo matchup with the Grizzlies, who rank seventh in pace, compared to the Sixers, who rank 28th. Embiid’s spectacular play should continue with an effort of at least 60 DKFP tonight and he is the No.1 stud on the board for Monday’s eight-game slate.

EDITOR’S NOTE: 76ers C Joel Embiid (rest) has been ruled out Monday vs. the Grizzlies.

Other Options: Jusuf Nurkic ($8,300), Bam Adebayo ($7,500)


Isaiah Hartenstein, Los Angeles Clippers at Indiana Pacers, $3,300 - After being eased back into action following a 13-game absence due to an ankle injury, Hartenstein has seen 20.5 minutes per game off the bench over the past four contests, which has resulted in 19.4 DKFP per game for the center. Hartenstein is averaging a strong 1.2 DKFP per minute this season and is a decent bet for over 20 DKFP against this susceptible Pacers’ defense.

Ever since they lost Turner eight games ago, Indiana has ranked dead last in defensive rating and allowed a league-high 56.8 points in the paint per game.

Other Options: Guillermo Hernangómez ($5,600, if Jonas Valanciunas is out), Richaun Holmes ($5,000), KJ Martin ($4,000), Andre Drummond ($3,700)

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $400K 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 Hunta512) 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 do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. 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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