Daily Fantasy Basketball: DraftKings Value Plays and Lineups – December 16th


Daily Fantasy Basketball is back, which means each day XN Sports will have a column detailing advised plays and lineups for the remainder of the NBA season. For those familiar with DraftKings, their daily fantasy basketball is formatted differently this season. There is no multi-position eligibility, which makes it a bit harder to set your lineup.

For those unfamiliar with DraftKings, you are given $50,000 in cap space to select a point guard, shooting guard, small forward, power forward, center, a guard, a forward, and a utility player. There are no points deducted for missed shots, which changes the strategy from other sites. To read the full scoring, click here. Keep in mind that a double-double awards a bonus, which can be the difference between cashing in and winning nothing.

Generally, the goal for value is at five times a player’s salary. That brings a lineup to 250 fantasy points, which will cash on most days.

Give DraftKings a shot, as there will be a few freeroll opportunities each night in Daily Fantasy Basketball. Click here to play.

Without further ado, the value plays and lineups for December 16th:

Value Plays


Mario Chalmers, Miami Heat ($5,400)- At the moment, Dwyane Wade is questionable to suit up tonight with an illness. If Wade can’t go for the Heat, especially with Chris Bosh nursing a potentially serious calf injury, Chalmers could see major usage for Miami tonight against the Nets. If that’s the case, Chalmers makes for an awesome play at $5,400. During his eight games in the Heat starting lineup this year, Chalmers is averaging 17.4 points and almost seven assists per game. He’s kind of like Taj Gibson of the Bulls. When other players around him are inactive, he’s almost a must-play in daily fantasy basketball. Meanwhile, the Nets are in the middle of the pack in terms of defending opposing point guards, but they struggle at defending the three-ball, as a healthy 25.5 percent of their points allowed this year have come from beyond the arc, the fourth-highest rate in the league.

Other values at guard: Tim Hardaway Jr. ($4,700), Norris Cole ($3,500).


Marreese Speights, Golden State Warriors ($5,000)- Andrew Bogut has already been ruled out for this contest against the Grizzlies, which makes Speights, who is one of the frontrunners for 6th man of the year, a good play. He’s been super efficient all year long, averaging 12 points and five rebounds in just 16 minutes per game, so whenever he’s scheduled to see an uptick in playing time, fantasy players should take note. Interestingly enough, Speights ranks 16th in the entire NBA in terms of usage rate (27.0), so when he’s on the floor, he gets the ball and shoots quite often, averaging 9.1 shot attempts per game on the year. Memphis is a tough defense, but actually rank 28th in terms of defending power forwards, and, for you narrative street fans, it’s a revenge game for Speights. Keep an eye on him.

Other values at forward: Shawne Williams ($3,500)


Mason Plumlee, Brooklyn Nets ($5,400)- Plumlee hasn’t been the most reliable, but as of late, he’s been very productive, averaging 12.3 points and over 10 rebounds per game over his last three games, all as the Nets’ starting center. With Brook Lopez sidelined until at least the weekend, Plumlee will continue to get the nod at center, making him almost an auto-play at his price, especially with just a six-game slate. The Heat will have an undersized, under-manned frontcourt tonight without Bosh and Josh McRoberts, and Miami has historically struggled against centers, even when fully healthy, so Plumlee is in a nice spot tonight. On the season, the Heat are surrendering the 10th-most fantasy points per game to the center position, while also coughing up almost 13 rebounds per game (7th-most). And in three career meetings with Miami, Plumlee is nearly averaging a double-double with 7.5 points and 10.2 boards per game. Plumlee is averaging nearly 34 minutes per game over his last three for the banged up Nets, so volume will surely be there again.

Other values at center: 

Lineup #1

PG- Mario Chalmers, $5,400

SG- Tim Hardaway Jr., $4,700

SF- Shawne Williams, $3,500

PF- Zach Randolph, $7,400

C- Mason Plumlee, $5,400

G- Tyreke Evans, $8,600

F- Marreese Speights, $5,000

UTIL- Rudy Gay, $9,300

Lineup #2

PG- Jrue Holiday, $8,300

SG- Tim Hardaway Jr., $4,700

SF- Shawne Williams, $3,500

PF- Cory Jefferson, $4,200

C- Jerome Jordan, $3,000

G- Russell Westbrook, $11,000

F- Zach Randolph, $7,400

UTIL- Dwyane Wade, $7,200*

*Note: If Wade manages to play tonight, I like him quite a bit against a Nets unit that struggles to defend shooting guards. When both Bosh and McRoberts are off the floor, Wade is sporting a gaudy usage rate of 50 percent.

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Adam Pfeifer
Adam Pfeifer is a fantasy sports writer for ProjectRoto and XN Sports. He covers the NFL, NBA and MLB. You can follow him on Twitter @aPfeiferRS.