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NBA DFS Picks & Lineup Optimizer Building Blocks Today | Friday, January 28

Eric MacPherson



The best NBA DFS picks today for Yahoo, DraftKings & FanDuel daily fantasy basketball cash game lineups | Luka Doncic NBA Tonight 5/20/22

Friday, Jan. 28, wraps up the work week with an 11-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 | Friday, Jan. 28

Yahoo Play of the Day — Shai Gilgeous-Alexander: Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Indiana Pacers

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 43.62 | DraftKings: 44.72
  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 24.8% | FanDuel 3.1% | DraftKings 11.1%
  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $38 | FanDuel $10,200 | DraftKings $9,300

Tonight the Yahoo salary algorithm is offering a gift, with Shai Gilgeous-Alexander coming in as an upper-mid tier salary; he is at the higher end of the salary list for most DFS sites. Myles Turner and Malcolm Brogdon are both out, and Domantas Sabonis is questionable. The Pacers have been abysmal on defense, and over their last seven games they are allowing an obscene 121 points per 100 possessions, which is behind only the 121.9 being allowed by Sacramento. Both Oklahoma City and Indiana are playing at a top-10 pace in this stretch, which should allow for ample fantasy opportunities.

Across his last eight games, only once has Gilgeous-Alexander failed to surpass 42 Yahoo points. In this stretch he is averaging 35.2 minutes and a 48.1% success rate on 20.1 field goal attempts per game. This has culminated in 27.8 points, 5.4 rebounds, 7.3 assists and 2.7 combined blocks and steals.

Anfernee Simons: Portland Trail Blazers at Houston Rockets

  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Point Projections: Yahoo and FanDuel: 46.43 | DraftKings: 47.85
  • Awesemo’s Preliminary Rostered Projections: Yahoo 22.2% | FanDuel 50.4% | DraftKings 32.2%
  • DFS Salary: Yahoo $55 | FanDuel $10,700 | DraftKings $11,100

The extended absence of Damian Lillard has allowed Anfernee Simons to see big minutes as the main offensive facilitator for the Trail Blazers. In his last seven games, six of which have been alongside C.J. McCollum, Simons has averaged a hefty 37.1 minutes and 16.9 field goal attempts. This has resulted in 21.6 points, 2.3 rebounds, 6.9 assists and one combined block/steal, which works out to 0.93 fantasy points per minute. Over their last seven games, Houston is playing at the fastest pace in the league and has little interest in defense. Christian Wood (migraine), Kevin Porter (illness) and Josh Christopher (leg) all received the questionable tag Friday afternoon and will be game-time decisions. McCollum, Jusuf Nurkic and Norman Powell are all fine options for Portland. Larry Nance Jr., Nassir Little and Cody Zeller are all out tonight

Los Angeles Lakers at Charlotte Hornets

This is a back-to-back for the Lakers, who lost last night 105-87 in Philadelphia. LeBron James (knee) did not play, and he remains questionable for tonight. Malik Monk is out after suffering a groin injury, and Avery Bradley is dealing with a non-COVID related illness. Who knows what will happen with Anthony Davis, who played 33.7 minutes last night with a solid 31 points, 12 rebounds, one assist and six combined blocks and steals. Naturally, he made a trip to the locker room in the second quarter but did return. He missed 17 games, so it would not be a surprise if he received tonight off on the back-to-back. Depending on who is in, out and starting, there could be some excellent value options from the Lakers tonight.

Charlotte is favored by half a dozen points at home, and the Lakers defense is nowhere near as effective as it was last year when they had Alex Caruso, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and Kyle Kuzma. The Hornets are missing Gordon Hayward and Jalen McDaniels, and Kelly Oubre (ankle) is questionable. LaMelo Ball, Miles Bridges and Terry Rozier all stand out across the DFS sites as players who should have solid representation in all formats.

Utah Jazz at Memphis Grizzlies

Rudy Gobert (calf) and Donovan Mitchell (concussion) are out, Trent Forrest (ankle) is doubtful. This will be the sixth game missed by Mitchell and we have seen the upside potential of Mike Conley, Bojan Bogdanovic, Joe Ingles and Jordan Clarkson all boosted in his absence. Their salaries have normalized for their increased minutes and responsibilities, though in this matchup they are all solid tournament options, and on the mid-slate contests they are fringe core plays. Hassan Whiteside should see unfettered minutes as the starter for Gobert, and while the matchup with Steven Adams is never easy, even at his elevating salary, Whiteside is a solid option in all formats.

When Gobert is off the court, Utah is an average defense at best ,and they naturally play at a faster pace on offense. This bodes well for Ja Morant who will not have the Stifle Tower waiting at the rim on drives. Morant has four straight games of 54 or more fantasy points including two with more than 60. Do not let the lofty salary dissuade you from making him part of your Friday night plans. Dillan Brooks, Kyle Anderson and Tyus Jones are all out tonight, though Desmond Bane is back from a three-game absence and coming off a 33.4-minute outing with 20 points scored against San Antonio. Jaren Jackson Jr. is also in play, and he will have a better chance of staying out of foul trouble against Whiteside than he would against Gobert.

The NBA player props market for Morant tonight is one to exploit. In the Awesemo projections he is currently carrying an 8.1-assist projection, while his assist prop is over/under 6.5. Over his last four games, Morant is averaging 8.5 assists and has at least six in each outing. This may be a bet worth making, with an expected win rate of 70% on OddsShopper.

Final Thoughts on NBA DFS picks for the Friday, Jan. 28 Slate

Tonight there are games staggered over five different start times, which should keep news trickling out after lock. 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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