Daily Fantasy Basketball: DraftKings Cheat Sheet – January 8

Daily Fantasy Basketball is in full swing, 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, plus five points. That brings a lineup to 290 fantasy points, which will cash each day.

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

Tonight’s featured contest:
-$55,000 prize pool.
– First place wins $5,000
– $2 entry fee (FREE with first deposit)
– Top 6,600 finishing positions are paid.
– Starts tonight at 7:30 PM EST
– Salary Cap Style Drafting. $50,000 to select 8 players
– Roster Format: 1 PG, 1 SG, 1 SF, 1 PF, 1 C, 1 G, 1 F, and 1 Utility
– First time depositors at DraftKings receive a 100% bonus up to $600

Remember, when you sign-up on DraftKings, use the promo code: XN.

Note: If you have signed up on DraftKings because of XNSports, let us know in the comments or on Twitter @XNSports. 

Each position will have a few guys that we like for each night, ranked from top to bottom. To find these players, tools like usage rate, defense vs. position, injuries, minutes, and more are used.

There is a lot of news that will affect lineups tonight, stay informed before tip.

Point Guard

Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors $10,200

Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers $9,800

Jose Calderon, New York Knicks $4,800

Cheap Plays:

No cheap plays at point guard tonight.

Shooting Guard

James Harden, Houston Rockets $10,300

Tim Hardaway Jr., New York Knicks $5,100

Gerald Henderson, Charlotte Hornets $5,300

Lou Williams, Toronto Raptors $4,600

Cheap Plays:

Jason Terry, Houston Rockets $3,000

Small Forward

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Charlotte Hornets $5,400

Luol Deng, Miami Heat $5,900

Cheap Plays:

Cleanthony Early, New York Knicks $3,000

Power Forward

LaMarcus Aldridge, Portland Trail Blazers $10,000

Cody Zeller, Charlotte Hornets $5,100

Quincy Acy, New York Knicks $4,400 (if he starts)

Cheap Plays: 

Travis Wear, New York Knicks $3,000


Jonas Valanciunas, Toronto Raptors $6,100

Cheap Plays:

Hassan Whiteside, Miami Heat $3,800

Jason Smith, New York Knicks $3,900


– With a short slate, it’s hard to imagine a big-time score from the winner.

– Hassan Whiteside is the top pick tonight in terms of value. He has crushed value in four straight games.

– There are some players under $4,000 that are worth playing tonight, so stars and duds may be a worthwhile strategy.

– Try to fit at least two stars tonight, as most other players will attempt to do the same. If you miss on one player who is low-owned, you are highly unlikely to cash in a short slate.

– Stay aware of late news, as two teams are playing the second leg of a back-to-back.

Usage Rates

– No outstanding usage rates to report other than Lowry, whose rate will be decreasing shortly with DeRozan returning to action.

If you have any questions or concerns leading to tip, let me know on Twitter @JoshCollacchi.

Note: If you have signed up on DraftKings because of XNSports, let us know in the comments or on Twitter @XNSports. 

*Keep an eye on the inactives, as things in the NBA change at the last second. Good luck tonight

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