Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks
Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.

After a wild Wednesday that included 10 games, the NBA has a quiet slate with just three games Thursday. Luckily there will still be plenty of top talent available in DFS with the Celtics, Blazers, Rockets and Jazz all in action. Let's examine some players across the price scale to target and avoid for your Yahoo entry.

GUARDS

Donovan Mitchell, UTA vs. HOU ($30): Of the three games Friday, this matchup between the Jazz and Rockets projects to be the most competitive. Both teams have underperformed this season, but there is still a long ways to go. Mitchell continues to pace the Jazz with a 30.6 percent usage rate, which has helped him score at least 43.9 Yahoo points in three of his last six games. He's battled with consistency issues, but after scoring 51.5 Yahoo points against the Rockets previously this year, he's a great target at this reasonable price.

Damyean Dotson, NY at BOS ($10): The Knicks constantly changing their rotations makes for some tricky situations in DFS. The waters are a little less muddied, though, with Trey Burke (knee) out Thursday. Dotson scored 31.3 Yahoo points in the first game that Burke missed Monday and has actually scored at least that many Yahoo points in three straight contests. At the minimum price, he might be worth the risk in tournament play.

Guard to Avoid

Tim Hardaway Jr., NY at BOS ($28): Hardaway is one of the few players on the Knicks that you normally don't have to worry about with regards to his playing time. However, his production has been shaky, scoring 26.2 Yahoo points or fewer in five of his last seven games. Considering the Celtics allow the fifth-fewest points per game (104.1) in the league, this might not be the night time to deploy the offensive-minded Hardaway.

FORWARDS

Gordon Hayward, BOS vs. NY ($23):Jayson Tatum ($26) is the most expensive forward option Thursday, so you won't need to spend much at the position regardless of who you choose. Hayward destroyed the Timberwolves for 56.8 Yahoo points Saturday after scoring 28 Yahoo points or fewer in three straight games. Hayward is certainly a risky option, but he also comes with significant upside.

Josh Jackson, PHO at POR ($15): The Suns will be short-handed again with Devin Booker (hamstring) ruled out and T.J. Warren (ankle) listed as doubtful for this contest. Jackson didn't exactly play well with both players out Tuesday, scoring 19.3 Yahoo points in a blowout loss to the Kings. This game could be equally lopsided, but Jackson has a clear path to playing time and had scored at least 29.9 Yahoo points in each of his previous three contests.

Forward to Avoid

Al-Farouq Aminu, POR vs. PHO ($15): Aminu has been fantastic on the board for the Blazers by averaging a career-high 8.2 rebounds per game. However, his offensive upside is limited due to his 12.3 percent usage rate. The Blazers might decide to give him some extra time on the bench if this game gets out of hand early, so avoiding that potential risk could be the way to go for your lineup.

CENTERS

Jusuf Nurkic, POR vs. PHO ($25): Nurkic's playing time comes with the same risks as Aminu's if this game were to be a blowout, but he has significantly higher scoring potential with a 24.2 percent usage rate. He's only averaging 26 minutes a game, but that hasn't stopped him from averaging a double-double (15 points and 10.4 rebounds) for the first time in his career. The Suns allow the second-most Yahoo points per game (54.6) to opposing centers, so expect them to have a hard time slowing down Nurkic.

Richaun Holmes, PHO at POR ($11): If there is one bright spot on the Suns right now, it's the play of Holmes. He's done a great job since taking over as their primary backup center and has scored at least 22.4 Yahoo points in seven of his last eight games. His offensive game is limited, but he has recorded 15 blocks during that eight-game stretch.

Center to Avoid

Deandre Ayton, PHO at POR ($28): Ayton has shown tremendous potential in the early stages of his career, but with so few weapons around him right now, he's drawing a ton of attention from opposing defenses. His production has slowed of late with 28.2 Yahoo points or fewer in four straight games. The Blazers allow the fifth-fewest Yahoo points per game (42.9) to opposing centers, so this could be another relatively quiet game from Ayton.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Mike Barner plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: FanDuel: mbarner, DraftKings: mbarner51.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Mike Barner
Mike started covering fantasy sports in 2007, joining RotoWire in 2010. He currently focuses on the NBA. Before RotoWire, Mike wrote for KFFL.com.
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