Mario Chalmers (DK $4300, FD $4800, 22.8 USG) – You’re going to notice a trend to today’s column and it wasn’t an accident. I’ll try not to overdue it but Memphis is full of value tonight. We’ll start with Rio.
So the Grizzlies traded away Courtney Lee, lost Marc Gasol for the year and now will be without Tony Allen tonight. Lots of cheap players gonna get decent playing time against a Lakers team that ranks dead last in defensive efficiency. Memphis is where the value is tonight and it’s gonna be quite popular if you ask me. Chalmers has averaged 22.26 DKPTS (in 22.4 minutes) over his last 5 games, so he’s meeting value and pretty much getting you a fantasy point a minute. In the one game Memphis has played against the Lakers earlier this year, Rio played almost 30 minutes and scored 29.25 DKPTS/27.50 FDPTS. Also, if this game gets out of hand, you could see even more extended run for these MEM bench guys. Onto the next one . . .
Vince Carter (DK $3300, FD $3800, 17.0 USG) – This isn’t 2005, I’m aware but he’s averaging just over 25 minutes over his last 3 games (28 over his last 2) and the Grizzlies will still be without Tony Allen, so the minutes should still be there. This time though, he gets to go up against Kobe, making his final appearance in Memphis. It’s not just the minutes that stand out for Carter though, as he’s averaging 25.03 DKPTS over his last 3 (27.9 over his last 2). He’s shooting close to 10 FGA’s, grabbing rebounds and getting some steals as well. Priced near the minimum across the board, I actually consider him to be a decent cash play. He won’t need to do much to pay off that salary and maybe seeing Kobe one last time sparks a little something extra. Crazy as it sounds, I think Carter will be one of the highest owned players of the night. We know how terrible the Lakers are at defending the wings, oh and while we’re on that topic . . . onto the next one.
Lance Stephenson (DK $3400, FD $3600, 26.5 USG w/ MEM) – Born Ready for the trifecta. I promise, this will be the last Grizzlies player I write up (I honestly could keep going though). With all the injuries this team is dealing with, Lance played just over 22 minutes in his MEM debut against TOR and scored 24.25 DKPTS/23.60 FDPTS. The Raptors are a top 10 defense, the Lakers are the worst. If you’re telling me I can roster a multi-dimensional player like him against this Lakers team for his price and minutes in the 20’s, I’m extremely interested. Much like Vince Carter, he doesn’t have to do much to pay that salary off and also offers good upside. His peripherals are what excites me most. Besides being a head case, he’s always been known for filling up the box score when given the opportunity. You did see what Giannis just did to the Lakers, right? While he’s not as talented as the Freak, they’re similar in that they both do a bit of everything. And once again, if this game turns into a blowout, all the more reason to love these guys.
Bobby Portis (DK $4700, FD $4300, 22.0 USG) – I could have easily just written up JaMychal Green here but I think you get the picture already. ‘Crazy Eyes’ Bobby has averaged 27.33 DKPTS over his last 4 games while playing about 25 minutes. He’s really starting to come around since he hit a mini rookie wall earlier this year. The consistency is there now. He’s a legitimate threat for a double double on any given night and facing a Wizards team that’s playing their 5th game in 7 nights. Also in his favor is that Pau is dealing with an illness (even though he’s listed as probable). Bobby may see a couple more minutes than usual if Pau looks off. He scored only 10 DKPTS in the one meeting these two teams had earlier this year but that was when he was seeing very little playing time. Also, since Jimmy Butler has been out, Portis is 3rd on the team in fantasy points per minute at exactly 1.00.
Ian Mahinmi (DK $5000, FD $5100, 15.0 USG) – Center is going to be the hardest position to figure out tonight with all these amazing plays in very favorable spots. Personally, I’d roll out Drummond across the board and figure out the rest as you go but if you looking to save some money, Mahinmi continues to fly under the radar in Indiana. He’s played over 30 minutes in 3 straight, averaging 34.36 DKPTS in that span and now facing a NY team that prefers to play big. His services will be needed and makes for a great pivot off Myler Turner, who costs $800 more on DK and $600 more on FD. But with all the value that Memphis will be providing for us tonight, I see no reason to spend this little unless you’re constructing various tournament lineups.