This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
With a five-game ledger on tap Sunday night, we look to hone in on some of the top value plays that can help you fit the likes of Joel Embiid, Karl-Anthony Towns and Russell Westbrook – the high-priced studs that could make or break the slate. Without further ado, let's break down some of the leading candidates that can offer you both savings and production.
Tyler Johnson, MIA vs. MIN ($4,700): Johnson has been seeing plenty of run in the backcourt during the extended absences of both Goran Dragic (knee) and Dion Waiters (ankle), and he's been making particularly good use of it lately. The versatile vet has scored over 20 fantasy points in five of his last six, including 38.2 two games ago versus the Raptors. Johnson is seeing minutes in the low-20s at minimum on most nights, and he'll face a decimated Timberwolves backcourt Sunday. Both Jeff Teague and Derrick Rose are projected to miss the game for Minnesota with ankle injuries, which renders the T-Wolves' stellar seasonal numbers versus point guards much less meaningful. Given the combination of some of Johnson's recent returns and his price, he makes for an enticing sub-$5K option.
Tyus Jones, MIN at MIA ($4,500): Jones is also very appealing on the other side of the Timberwolves-Heat tilt for some of the very reasons just elaborated on. With both Teague and Rose projected to sit Sunday, Jones will once again see extended run as the starting point guard. The fourth-year pro has scored 22 to 29 fantasy points over the last three games while seeing 20 to 31 minutes. He should be near or above the top end of the latter range Sunday against a Heat squad that's allowed 43.6 fantasy points per game to point guards, along with bottom-10 figures in assists (8.2) and made threes (2.5) to ones.
J.J. Redick, PHI at POR ($5,200): Redick is another player who's recently been outpacing his current price. The veteran sharpshooter has compiled more than 30 fantasy points in two of the last three games, and he posted a solid 25.6 in the other game during that stretch. He'll face a Portland squad that's allowed 47.3 fantasy points per game to twos. The Blazers also allow an NBA-high 37.8 percent shooting from three-point range, which could spell trouble against Redick and his aggressive style – he's taking a career-high 7.6 three-point attempts per contest and draining them at a 37.1 percent clip.
Josh Hart, LAL vs. SAC ($3,700): Hart is on a nice four-game streak of double-digit scoring, one that's led to him tallying 22.1 to 37.1 fantasy points in three of those contests. Hart is averaging 34.8 fantasy points overall without LeBron James (groin) on the floor this season, making him particularly appealing at a vastly discounted price Sunday. The Kings also come in allowing 41.6 fantasy points per game to twos, along with the fifth-most points (24.0), the most made threes (3.4) and third-most steals (1.7) per game to the position. Hart is capable of exploiting all of those weaknesses, considering he's averaging career highs in all three categories and is taking a solid 4.5 three-point attempts per contest.
Justise Winslow, MIA vs. MIN ($6,400): Coach Erik Spoelstra has found something with Winslow as his starting point guard, as the fourth-year pro has scored 31.4 to 51.7 fantasy points in his last three games while eclipsing 20 actual points in each of those contests. As those numbers imply, Winslow's usage is encouragingly up recently, as he's taken 12 to 21 attempts in each of those contests. That's helped lead to a team-high 26.7 percent usage rate for Winslow over that stretch, as well as 1.33 fantasy points per minute. As mentioned in Johnson's entry, the T-Wolves will also be a lot less sharp on defense against the point guard position with both Teague and Rose expected to miss the contest, furthering Winslow's case.
Harrison Barnes, DAL vs. OKC ($5,700): Barnes has eclipsed 30 fantasy points twice and the 40-mark once in his last six games, providing a glimpse at his strong ceiling relative to his current price. He'll also draw a favorable matchup Sunday, as power forward has been a vulnerability for a Thunder defense that's been stout overall. OKC comes in allowing the sixth-most fantasy points (48.1) per game to power forwards, along with the third-most points (23.8), seventh-most rebounds (11.9) and 49.8 percent shooting to the position. It's also worth noting that Barnes has never been more aggressive or successful from three-point range than this season, as evidenced by his career-high 41.7 percent shooting from distance on a career-high 6.2 attempts from behind the arc.
Wendell Carter, Jr., CHI at TOR ($5,400): As a rookie, Carter has naturally gone through his fair share of ups and downs during his first pro season, but he's flashed a ceiling well north of 30 fantasy points on multiple occasions. The latest example unfolded in Carter's most recent contest, when he racked up 45.6 fantasy points on the strength of a 17-point, 13-rebound double-double against the Wizards on Friday night. It was Carter's third effort of more than 40 fantasy points overall, and he'll be in a good position for one of his better returns again Sunday. The Raptors were just trampled by the Magic's Nikola Vucevic for a 30-point, 20-rebound double-double Friday, and they come in allowing 55.3 fantasy points per game to centers, along with the second-most assists (4.6). Then, Toronto has allowed the sixth-most points in the paint per game over the last three (56.0), while Carter is logging 61.2 percent of his scoring in that area of the floor.
Al-Farouq Aminu, POR vs. PHI ($5,200): Aminu has been filling out the stat sheet in trademark fashion recently, posting 23.9 to 31.4 fantasy points in the last four games. The veteran is particularly consistent on the boards, and he's currently averaging a career-high 8.0 rebounds per contest. The Sixers could make for appealing targets Sunday, as Philadelphia has allowed the fifth-most fantasy points per game to power forwards (48.3), along with the fifth-most points (23.1) and fourth-most rebounds (12.2) per game to the position as well. Aminu should log fairly heavy minutes in a game that projects to be tightly contested through four quarters, and the Sixers' accelerated pace (106.6 possessions per game, fifth most) should work in his favor as well in terms of extra opportunities.
Tyson Chandler, LAL vs. SAC ($3,800): Chandler has been a key veteran addition for the Lakers, and with JaVale McGee (illness) likely to be limited at best if he even suits up Sunday, he makes for an enticing bargain at center. The big man supplied 34.5 fantasy points over 23 minutes against the Clippers on Friday night, and he posted 20 over 20 minutes against the Kings in the game prior. Sunday, he'll get a rematch with Sacramento, which comes in allowing bottom-10 figures in fantasy points (56.5) and blocks (2.6) to centers, along with the most rebounds (19.3) per contest to fives. The Kings are also allowing the most points in the paint per game (53.5), including an NBA-high 64.7 over the last three. Meanwhile, Chandler counters by scoring 70.1 percent of his points in that area of the floor.