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Yahoo DFS Basketball: Thursday Picks

Mike Barner

Mike started covering fantasy sports in 2007, joining RotoWire in 2010. He currently focuses on the NBA. Before RotoWire, Mike wrote for

There are only two games in the NBA on Thursday, leaving you with very limited options for your Yahoo entry. Here are some players to target and avoid that can hopefully turn the quiet night into a winning one.


Eric Bledsoe, MIL vs. DEN ($31): Bledsoe has had some bumps along the way as he acclimates himself to his new teammates, but heís firing on all cylinders right now, scoring at least 33.6 Yahoo points in five straight games. He has a 27.1% usage rate with the Bucks, which is second highest on the team. The Nuggets allow the fifth-most Yahoo points per game (46.3) to opposing point guards, leaving Bledsoe with a great opportunity to extend his hot streak Thursday.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, LAL at MIN ($15): Caldwell-Pope only has a 17.2% usage rate this season, which is his lowest since his rookie campaign. Itís not going to get any better either once Lonzo Ball (knee) returns and with Isaiah Thomas now in the fold. Ball wonít play Thursday though, which should again leave Caldwell-Pope with added minutes. Heís played at least 30 minutes and scored at least 28.6 Yahoo points in three straight games, making him someone to consider at this cheap price.

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Guard to Avoid

Jamal Murray, DEN at MIL ($22): Murray (chest) played through injury Tuesday against the Spurs and is listed as probable for Thursday. The problem is that he doesnít have a great ceiling, scoring 27.5 Yahoo points or less in four of his last five games. The Bucks also allow the eighth-fewest Yahoo points per game (42.1) to opposing point guards, so it might not be the night to take a chance on Murray breaking out of his recent slump.


Giannis Antetokounmpo, MIL vs. DEN ($55): Giannis is by far the best option at forward Thursday, scoring at least 44.7 Yahoo points in 10 of his last 12 games. He is averaging a double-double (27.6 points and 10.4 rebounds per game) for the first time in his career while also averaging a lofty 37 minutes per game this season. Itís easy to make an argument to play Giannis on most nights, but itís especially wise Thursday with so few options.

Kyle Kuzma, LAL at MIN ($20): The Lakers had a logjam up front, but freed up some playing time by trading Larry Nance Jr. to the Cavaliers. Kuzma has played at least 24 minutes in all three games since Nance was traded, scoring at least 31.5 Yahoo points in each contest. He can put up points in a hurry and has a favorable matchup Thursday against a Timberwolves team that has allowed at least 106 points in five straight games. The price is right to take a chance on him for your entry.

Forward to Avoid

Jabari Parker, MIL vs. DEN ($14): There arenít a lot of great cheap options Thursday with so few games, but you still have to take a risk with someone to fill out your entry. Parker is not the player to take a chance on though as he is still on a minutes restriction, playing 20 minutes or less in all five games he has played so far. He scored 15.6 Yahoo points or less in four of those five contests, so it would be a good idea to keep him out of your lineup.

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Karl-Anthony Towns, MIN vs. LAL ($43): Towns is coming off of two monster performances, scoring at least 58.6 Yahoo points in back-to-back games. He was extremely efficient in both contests, shooting a combined 22-for-33 from the field and 16-for-16 from the charity stripe. The Lakers play at the fastest pace (103 possessions per game) in the league, which should afford Towns even more opportunities to be productive. He is expensive, but donít hesitate to add him to your entry.

Tyler Zeller, MIL vs. DEN ($10): John Henson (hamstring) has been ruled out for Thursday, which should open up added playing time for Zeller. Henson has missed the previous two games as well, resulting in Zeller scoring at least 18.1 Yahoo points in both contests. There arenít a lot of viable cheap options at center, but Zeller has some upside at the minimum price.

Center to Avoid

Brook Lopez, LAL at MIN ($15): The two best options at center Thursday are Towns and Nikola Jokic. With Henson already out, Lopez is the next most expensive option. He has scored 16.8 Yahoo points or less in two of his last four games and could provide similar production as Zeller. Considering he will cost you five dollars more, it might be worth taking a chance on Zeller instead if you are determined to save money at center.

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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 .