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NBA DFS Plays for Friday, 10/22

The NBA is back in full swing, and we have a nice ten-game slate to navigate tonight! There should be plenty of fantasy points to go around, as eight of the ten games have projected point totals of 220 or more. This early in the season we don’t have any teams dealing with back-to-back games yet, and there are very few injury situations to monitor.

In this article, I’ll offer up at least one player to pay up for, one rock-solid value, and one salary save at each position category. Take note that some players have different position eligibility between FanDuel and DraftKings. The salary structure is also a bit different between the two sites. When you see a player cheaper on FD than DK, it’s a situation worth investigating.

Let’s dive in!

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Lamelo Ball (CHA)
FanDuel – $8,200
DraftKings – $7,700

The reigning rookie started the year off strong, falling just one rebound and three assists shy of what would have been a huge triple-double on Wednesday. He should have no problem racking up stats against Cleveland tonight in a game with a healthy 224.5 expected point total. Take advantage of this pricing now because I expect Ball’s salary to do nothing but climb over the next month.

Spencer Dinwiddie (WAS)
FanDuel – $6,200
DraftKings – $5,600

Dinwiddie didn’t explode in his Wizards debut Wednesday night, but his underlying peripheral numbers were strong. He commanded a 24.6% usage rate, which is more impressive considering he’s playing alongside Bradley Beal. He’s a safe mid-priced play as is, but he’d become chalk if Beal, who’s listed as questionable with a hip injury, sits this one out.

Chris Duarte (IND)
FanDuel – $5,300
DraftKings – $6,000

Welcome to the NBA Chris Duarte! The rookie exploded for 27 points in his professional debut, and the DFS pricing is slow to react. He has a great matchup with the Wizards tonight in a game with an expected point total over 228. It’s worth noting that while he starts at shooting guard for the Pacers, he’s listed as a small forward on FanDuel.

P.J. Dozier (DEN)
FanDuel – $3,900
DraftKings – $3,900

The Nuggets will be running a backcourt-by-committee until Jamal Murray can return from his offseason ACL surgery. Dozier will be part of the rotation, and he led Denver’s bench with 20 minutes of court time in the season debut. He’s one of the best salary-saving options on tonight’s slate.

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Kevin Durant (BKN)
FanDuel – $10,800
DraftKings – $9,300

Given the size of tonight’s slate, there aren’t as many high-end options as you’d expect. Durant is my favorite of the elite options given his usage and the matchup with the 76ers having the highest expected point total of the night. He’s tougher to pay up for on FanDuel, but I love him on DraftKings, where he’s $100 cheaper than his teammate James Harden.

Harrison Barnes (SAC)
FanDuel – $6,700
DraftKings – $7,300

You rarely hear Barnes mentioned as a DFS target, but he quietly produces on a nightly basis. He had one of the best performances of his career in the season debut, racking up 36 points and falling one rebound shy of a double-double. He’s a rock-solid value with his modest salary, especially on FanDuel.

Kyle Kuzma (WAS)
FanDuel – $5,600
DraftKings – $5,700

Kuzma is a full-time starter now that he’s departed Los Angeles and arrived in Washington. He produced a double-double in his Wizards debut Wednesday and could be in line for another tonight against the Pacers. Just like Spencer Dinwiddie, he’ll see a big usage bump if Bradley Beal’s hip injury is serious enough to keep him out tonight.

Franz Wagner (ORL)
FanDuel – $4,000
DraftKings – $4,500

Wagner got the start for Orlando’s season opener Wednesday and played a team-high 32 minutes. The matchup with the Knicks isn’t ideal, but it’s tough to find those kinds of minutes at such a low cost. I’d expect his salary to climb over the next few weeks, but until then, he’s a great salary-saving option.

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Domantas Sabonis (IND)
FanDuel: $9,700
DraftKings: $9,000

Sabonis is becoming one of the best DFS plays night in and night out. He’s a triple-double threat every time he takes the floor, and he may be adding more three-point shots to his repertoire. He took six attempts from deep in the season opener, something he did just one time all of last season. He’s priced as the third and fourth most expensive center respectively tonight but has the ceiling to finish as the top fantasy scorer at the position.

Robert Williams (BOS)
FanDuel – $7,000
DraftKings – $6,200

Williams was hyped as a breakout candidate by many fantasy analysts leading up to the season, and he showed why in the season opener. It’s unrealistic to expect five blocks every game, but as Boston’s starting center, he should rack up plenty of double-doubles. He’s another player whose salary I expect to climb, so I want to take advantage now.

Nicolas Claxton (BKN)
FanDuel – $4,300
DraftKings – $3,800

The third-year center is now the starter for the Nets and has tremendous upside at his discount price. Don’t expect him to lead the team in scoring while playing alongside Durant and Harden, but Claxton is a double-double candidate every time he takes the floor. He averaged 2.4 blocks per 36 minutes last season, giving him huge upside if he swats a few shots.

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Image credit: William Lovelady