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NBA DFS Picks & Lineup Optimizer Building Blocks Today | Saturday, January 29

Eric MacPherson



The best NBA DFS picks today for Yahoo, DraftKings & FanDuel daily fantasy basketball cash game lineups | Jaylen Brown NBA Tonight 5/21/22

Saturday, Jan. 29, gets things going with a six-game main slate tipping off at 7:00 p.m. ET. Let’s look at the player pool and discuss the top NBA DFS picks for DraftKings, FanDuel and Yahoo lineups. Do not forget to head over to the Awesemo NBA DFS home page for more great written daily fantasy basketball content.

NBA DFS Picks: DraftKings, FanDuel & Yahoo Building Blocks Today | Saturday, Jan. 29

Yahoo Play of the Day — Ja Morant: Memphis Grizzlies vs. Washington Wizards

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 45.11 | DraftKings: 47.38
  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 19.6% | FanDuel 12.9% | DraftKings 15.6%
  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $45 | FanDuel $10,600 | DraftKings $10,300

Once again Ja Morant will be carrying the load for Memphis as Dillon Brooks (ankle) and Tyus Jones (COVID) are out and Ziaire Williams (knee) is doubtful. Kyle Anderson has missed the last five games and while he has cleared the health and safety protocol, he is questionable with conditioning being the variable. This is a back-to-back for the Grizzles who dispatched Utah last night 119-109. While Morant did log 36 minutes, Memphis does not play again until Monday so he should be just fine for his typical workload. While Washington is much improved on defense compared to last season, they are not quite league average and they are also coming off a home loss where the Clippers erased a 35 point deficit to win. It will be interesting to see if that was a tipping point for the Wizards, good or bad. Jaren Jackson Jr. has 37 or more fantasy points in four of his last five games and he is an excellent play along side Morant or on his own tonight.

The NBA player props market for Kyle Kuzma tonight is one to exploit against the Grizzlies. In the Awesemo projections he is currently carrying a 13.9-point projection, while his point prop is over/under 17.5. Over his last five games, Kuzma is averaging 15.6 points with only one game over 16 points. This may be a bet worth making, with an expected win rate of 70% on OddsShopper.

Kyrie Irving: Brooklyn Nets at Golden State Warriors

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 37.76 | DraftKings: 38.49
  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 5.6% | FanDuel 4.9% | DraftKings 1.7%
  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $39 | FanDuel $9,400 | DraftKings $9,500

The Yahoo salary algorithm still has not quite caught up to Kyrie Irving only playing in games outside of New York. While we are not getting a dramatic discount, he should be in the $41-$44 range for this matchup. Over 241 minutes this season, Irving is averaging 1.12 Yahoo fantasy points and if his shot is falling, he should be good for at least 40 fantasy points. James Harden sees his production fall from 1.52 fantasy points per minute without Irving and Kevin Durant to 1.20 when he shares the court with Irving across 117 minutes this season.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker: New Orleans Pelicans vs. Boston Celtics

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 27.51 | DraftKings: 28.8
  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 36.8% | FanDuel 24.5% | DraftKings 42.7%
  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $18 | FanDuel $5,500 | DraftKings $4,600

Tonight Brandon Ingram (ankle) will be out for a fourth straight game and Jonas Valanciunas (illness) is questionable having missed the last two games. Devonte’ Graham (knee) tweaked his knee last night and he is listed as questionable as well. In the three games without Ingram, Alexander-Walker has averaged 35.0 minutes with 16.3 field goal attempts. This has worked out to 21.0 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.3 combined blocks and steals. Only once has the 23-year old landed in the starting lineup during this timeframe, but he is still averaging 34.5 fantasy points with the increase opportunities.

Sacramento Kings at Philadelphia 76ers

This is an island game for both teams with each having there next game on Monday and Sacramento last playing on Wednesday while Philadelphia saw action on Thursday. De’Aaron Fox (ankle) has missed the last three games and he is questionable along with Chimezie Metu (knee) who has been sidelined for two games. Terence Davis (wrist) will miss at least the next week.

If Fox is able to return, that should give the Kings a chance to keep things close which bodes well for Joel Embiid playing 32-35 minutes and racking up the fantasy points against a hapless Sacramento frontcourt. If Fox is out again, Tyrese Haliburton is an excellent option, though he slides back towards neutral if his running mate returns. Richaun Holmes, Harrison Barnes and Buddy Hield are all options that can be sprinkled across lineups for tournament differentiation.

The ‘Sixers are missing Shake Milton (back) and Seth Curry (ankle) has not played in over a week. Tyrese Maxey looks like the best option aside from Embiid with Tobias Harris a tick behind. If Curry returns, that clouds the rotation with Danny Green, Furkan Korkmaz, Matisse Thybulle and Georges Niang are all likely to feel the pinch in playing time.

Toronto Raptors at Miami Heat

Khem Birch (nose) is out and Fred VanVleet (knee) is questionable having missed the last two games with a sore knee. If VanVleet remains out, look to the assist props for Pascal Siakam and Scottie Barnes as they have been the main facilitators over the last two games. This season Siakam has a 20.4% assist rate with VanVleet and that jumps to 29.3% without the Wichita Shocker on the court. If VanVleet returns, Gary Trent Jr., Chris Boucher and Precious Achiuwa are likely to see the biggest change in minutes and opportunties.

Kyle Lowry (personal) will miss his seventh straight game, but Jimmy Butler (toe) is expected to play on this back-to-back as long as things go well in warmups. Bam Adebayo, Tyler Herro and Gabe Vincent are subpar options, but they still merit consideration as differentiation plays.

Final Thoughts on NBA DFS picks for the Saturday, Jan. 29 Slate

Tonight should be a wild one with all six games tipping off within 90 minutes of each other. Keep in mind that salaries and scoring formats differ across the various fantasy sites, and a slam-dunk play on Yahoo may be a below-average NBA DFS pick on DraftKings or FanDuel.

Eric "EMac" MacPherson won the 2007 Fantasy Baseball grand prize (trip for two to the MLB All-Star game) in the Roto format on ESPN. He won again in 2008, this time in the H2H format. As one of the early adopters of daily fantasy sports, EMac has been providing content for baseball and basketball as well as both professional and college football since 2012 for a variety of websites including DraftKings Playbook, FanVice, RotoWorld, Daily Fantasy Bootcamp, and RotoGrinders. He is well into his third decade of fantasy sports and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. Follow him on Twitter @EMacDFS or contact EMac by emailing [email protected].

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