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Expert NBA Fantasy Rankings & Value Plays Today for DraftKings & FanDuel | 1/12/22

Tyler Schmidt



There is an awesome nine-game NBA fantasy slate tonight. Unlike last night, there is value flooded all over this slate. With that, NBA DFS injury news will be a big part of tonight’s process. Be sure to check the Awesemo NBA Starting Lineups page to see who is in, who is out and who is starting as news breaks, and look at the NBA DFS rankings and projections before making your NBA fantasy picks today for DraftKings and FanDuel lineups.

DraftKings & FanDuel NBA Fantasy Rankings Today

*Grades are ordered DraftKings, FanDuel. Initial grade indicates a player’s strength of output, with the value grade indicating their strength as a play in relation to their salary.

PG Spencer Dinwiddie — Grades: B, B | Values: A, B

After being out of the COVID protocols at the end of December, Bradley Beal re-entered the protocols and will be out for a few more games. That opens the door for Spencer Dinwiddie, who played without Beal last night and ended up with a double-double on 22 points and 10 assists. In the 13 games that Beal has missed this season, Dinwiddie is averaging 24 points, nine assists and six rebounds per game. He is averaging 13.6 more points per game when Beal is not in the lineup. Dinwiddie’s usage rate also jumps from 19.4% to 28.1% while his field goal attempts climb from 9.8 to 17.1 per game.

Seeing as his price did not move on DraftKings, Dinwiddie will be extremely popular. Awesemo’s ownership projections have Dinwiddie as the highest-owned player right now on DraftKings, just surpassing 40%. The Wizards hosted the 13-27 Thunder last night and tonight get an even better matchup against the league-worst Orlando Magic. The Magic are without their two starting centers, so their defense will struggle. They rank 25th in defensive rating this season.

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C Robin Lopez — Grades: D, B | Values: B, A

Staying in the same game, Orlando Magic center Robin Lopez will benefit greatly without Mo Bamba and Wendell Carter Jr. tonight. Lopez will likely draw another start, which has shown to be very productive. In the five games that Lopez has started this season, he is averaging 14 points, 5.2 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game. He has attempted nearly 12 field goals per game, as he has averaged a very impressive 30.1 DraftKings points during that time.

Lopez is only center eligible, which always creates a little bit of added risk, but he provides a lot of value to allow for spending up at other positions tonight. Despite being 6-point road underdogs, the Magic at least have Cole Anthony back in the lineup to keep them competitive. There may be some more value plays that pop, but do not forget about Lopez.

SF LeBron James — Grades: A, A | Values: C, B

With so much value on this slate, gamers need to spend money wisely. What better way than getting to LeBron James in a fantastic matchup against the Sacramento Kings? The price tag remains very high, but James is playing at an elite level right now. He has scored over 30 points in 10 of his last 11 games. During that time he is averaging 34.2 points, 9.6 rebounds, 6.3 assists, 1.7 steals and 1.5 blocks per game.  He has a 33.3% usage rate and is averaging 63 DraftKings points per game. James has the floor for cash games and the highest ceiling on the slate for tournaments.

James and the Lakers draw a matchup against the Kings in what should be a track meet. The Lakers lead the league in pace, while the Kings rank ninth. The Kings allow 113.6 points per game and rank 26th in defensive rating this season. Awesemo projects James to score the most fantasy points on both sites tonight, which should not be a surprise. The Lakers are 3-point road favorites and implied to score 117 points.

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C Onyeka Okongwu — Grades: C, B | Values: B, A

Another player who benefits due to injury tonight is Atlanta Hawks center Onyeka Okongwu. Clint Capela is doubtful to play and did not go through shootaround, so it will likely be Okongwu starting alongside John Collins. Awesemo projects Okongwu to be the best value on the slate tonight. He is in the top three in ownership projections on both sites and is in the top two in boom percentage on both sites. He is impossible to ignore at his cheap price tag.

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The matchup against the Heat is not as daunting as it was earlier in the season. A big reason is the absence of Bam Adebayo. With Adebayo not in the lineup, the Heat see a decrease in their defensive rating from 107.9 to 110.2. They may get Dewayne Dedmon back tonight which will help, but Okongwu is simply too cheap across the industry regardless of the matchup. He is another piece that allows for paying up to James.

PG Dejounte Murray — Grades: A, A | Values: A, A

Looking to the Spurs is a great way to round out lineups tonight. Dejounte Murray is a great pay-up target, but there are many pieces that can fill different positions. Joshua Primo, Lonnie Walker IV and Jakob Poeltl are all grading out very well in Awesemo’s models. However, getting to Murray is the best option tonight. Murray flip-flops with Okongwu in terms of boom percentage on each site. He has the highest boom percentage on DraftKings and the second highest on FanDuel. Murray is the only player who has an A grade and an A value on both sites.

The matchup against the Rockets is really what sets these Spurs players apart from the rest of the group. The Rockets rank last in defensive rating, while they rank second in pace this season. They have allowed a league-high 116.4 points, as their opponents have shot 47% from the field. The Spurs are implied to score a slate-high 118.25 points tonight, and the game total is set at a very juicy 230.5 points.

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Our NBA DFS projections tonight are updated regularly, including whenever any relevant news breaks. We also have FanDuel rankings, DraftKings NBA rankings and Yahoo! NBA ownership rankings for today's slate. View our FanDuel ownership, our DraftKings NBA ownership and our Yahoo! ownership. Looking for more NBA DFS plays and the best free NBA DFS tools? Check out our daily fantasy rankings NBA for fantasy points and values that are derived directly from Alex Baker's own NBA FanDuel projections.

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