Saturday is a reminder to pay attention to both current matchups and schedule. Golden State looks awfully tempting, with a huge 230 over/under from Vegas projecting them to score a league-high 118 points against a high-paced leaky Denver defense. But the Warriors will have arrived in Denver from Sacramento only around 15 hours before the game, and Denver is 20-7 at home, so we’ll avoid the Warriors. Instead, let’s stack some Rockets.
Houston plays the Saturday prime time game on ABC against a terrible Cavs defense, and this one could get ugly. The Rockets are missing some key players: Ariza is out, Gordon is questionable, and Chris Paul is playing through a groin injury. That could present some huge opportunity for other bargain Rockets. Let’s load up.
PG/SG James Harden HOU $11.6K vs Cleveland
If we’re going in on the Rockets, then it has to start with the likely MVP at the top. The Beard has been absolutely on fire, averaging 51 fantasy points a game over the last five including an absurd 103-point effort in the league’s first ever 60-point triple-double. With the Rockets so banged up, it’ll be up to Harden to put on another show in prime time on national TV in Cleveland. This could be his chance to settle the MVP debate for good this year.
SG Bradley Beal WAS $9.1K vs Orlando
New All-Star Bradley Beal has been the biggest beneficiary of the John Wall injury. He’s the guy for the Wizards now on offense, and he’s seen an uptick in both his scoring and his assisting. Beal is averaging a LeBron-esque 27/7/7 over the past four games, a stretch that includes 13 threes and 7 steals. He’s over 50 fantasy points a game in that stretch and gets a dream matchup against the terrible Magic guards.
SG/SF Andrew Wiggins MIN $5.7K vs New Orleans
Wiggins has been terrible lately and is at his lowest price of the season, so this is a vote on regression and matchup. Wiggins is too talented a player to keep slumping, and Saturday against the Pelicans could be the chance to break out against a team that struggles to defend wings and gives up the second most total points in the NBA. Minnesota is projected to score 115 by Vegas, second highest total of the night.
SG/SF Gerald Green HOU $5.0K vs Cleveland
Time to go back to the well on Houston in a game that should see plenty of Rockets points and possibly some garbage time. Both of those things should mean plenty of minutes for Green, who’s already played 30 minutes twice in a row with Ariza and Gordon out. He should score double digit points and grab a handful of boards, and he’s going to jack a bunch of threes so there’s big upside here.
PF/C Dirk Nowitzki DAL $5.0K vs Sacramento
Dirk just keeps on chugging along, and he’s shooting and making more threes than ever this season. The Kings are worst in the NBA in both field goal and three point field goal percentage allowed, letting guys get anywhere they want. Dirk is not what he once was but he can certainly get to his spot and he could have a throwback game against this bad defense.
PG/SG Tomas Satoransky WAS $4.8K vs Orlando
Satoransky is another beneficiary of the John Wall injury. He’s starting at point guard without Wall and is averaging 24 fantasy points a game during those three games with a tidy 8/4/6 line and four steals. Orlando is bad just about everywhere on defense, but especially against guards. He’s a bargain play.
PF/C Ryan Anderson HOU $4.5K vs Cleveland
One last dip into the Rockets pool for Ryan Anderson, one of the forgotten names in Houston this year. Anderson is producing well on a per-minute basis but has seen his playing time dip, but Houston has had to turn back to him recently with all the injuries and Anderson is getting his scoring going again. He’s the exact sort of player Cleveland is too lazy to chase around the perimeter, and he’s a high-variance guy with big upside if he starts hitting his shots.
PF/C Bam Adebayo MIA $3.8K vs Detroit
Adebayo was awesome Friday night against Joel Embiid. He had the best game of his career with 15 points, 13 rebounds, and a career-high 6 assists for 41.75 fantasy points. He did that without Hassan Whiteside, and Whiteside is questionable again Saturday. The Pistons defense doesn’t seem to have settled in yet with Blake Griffin and has been bad against centers. Adebayo may be the biggest bargain of the night if Whiteside is out again.