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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Cole Huff

NBA DFS value plays: Andrew Nembhard and Aaron Gordon are low-price, high-production players to roster on Friday

Before getting situated to watch the many NFL playoff games over the holiday weekend, be sure first to get your NBA fix.

The NBA’s nine-game slate on Friday presents the perfect opportunity to look through over half of the league’s rosters to craft the perfect DFS lineup. While narrowing down the list could be difficult, one way to begin piecing together the right mix is to find the bargains at each position. Once you load up on the cheap but potentially difference-making guys, filling out the rest with surefire superstars won’t be an issue.

So, let us lend a helping hand. Here are 10 players with low price tags to consider throwing in your DFS roster.

All prices via

Point Guards

(Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports)

Andrew Nembhard – Indiana Pacers ($5,300)

If you haven’t paid much attention to the NBA, you might not be hip to Andrew Nembhard. He’s a rookie guard that’s come in and become a productive part of what’s looking like a potential playoff team. He starts in the backcourt alongside Tyrese Haliburton but should get even more on-ball reps with Haliburton expected to miss time with a knee injury.

TJ McConnell – Indiana Pacers ($5,000)

We’ll keep it right here in Indianapolis. If you don’t think Nembhard, who’s already a starter, will see much of an increase in production during Haliburton’s absence, then go ahead and pivot to TJ McConnell who will be replacing Haliburton in the starting lineup. McConnell isn’t flashy but he’s smart and crafty as heck, which is how he ends up with 14-point, 8-rebound, 7-assist, 2-steal games off the bench as he did against the Knicks on Wednesday. He’s a safe play.

Shooting Guards

(Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports)

Jalen Williams – Oklahoma City Thunder ($5,900)

Paolo Banchero and Benn Mathurin deservedly are the talking points of most Rookie of the Year discussions but don’t allow that discourse to keep you out of the loop on how productive Jalen Williams continues to be in his first year as a pro. Over the past 30 days, he’s recorded six games with at least 30.0 fantasy points on FanDuel. He’ll get his shot against Chicago on Friday and could potentially deliver once again.

Terance Mann – Los Angeles Clippers ($4,800)

Guess who has started the past two games at the point guard position for the LA Clippers? That’s right — Terance Mann. Mann brings size, energy and athleticism to the starting unit that a mostly old and unathletic group sorely lacks. He’ll likely be out on the court often to chase around Jamal Murray and Bones Hyland, but his offense could catch a few by surprise and lead to a good fantasy outing.

Small Forwards

(Benny Sieu-USA TODAY Sports)

Deni Avdija – Washington Wizards ($5,300)

The Wizards are pretty banged up. Bradley Beal, Kristaps Porzingis, Monte Morris, Daniel Gafford, Johnny Davis and Vernon Carey are all on the injury report. It’s unsure which of those guys will and won’t play. Regardless, there should be more than enough opportunities for Avdija to up his play. Oh, by the way, he grabbed 20(!) rebounds last game.

Torrey Craig – Phoenix Suns ($5,500)

Speaking of injuries, the Phoenix Suns might have the most. But all of Phoenix’s absences have opened the door for more minutes and opportunities for Craig. He’s delivered and should continue to.

Power Forwards

(Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)

Aaron Gordon – Denver Nuggets ($6,400)

Gordon is a bit pricier (the most expensive on this list) but still relatively cheap in the grand scheme of things. Don’t be too concerned about spending a little extra money on him. He always seems to find a way to go off against the Clippers.

Zach Collins – San Antonio Spurs ($5,700)

You may have forgotten about Zach Collins for several reasons; 1) he was always hurt in Portland and never got to reach his full potential, and 2) he now plays for a Spurs team that doesn’t receive much attention. But he usually plays a good chunk of minutes and does well in them. His 30-plus fantasy points in two of the last three games suggest he’s trending in the right direction.


(Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports)

Walker Kessler – Utah Jazz ($5,600)

With Utah being hit with injuries to the frontcourt and being short on bigs, Kessler could see a bump in minutes on Friday night against Orlando. He’s usually pretty reliable for 20 to 25 fantasy points, but when he starts erasing the opposing team’s shots, that’s where his number really jumps up. Go ahead and take a flier on Kessler.

Nerlens Noel – Detroit Pistons ($5,000)

Noel’s finally got a consistent role in Detroit’s lineup as players battle injuries. He won’t provide much in the scoring department, but his fantasy production comes on the defensive end. Over the past two games, Noel’s recorded seven blocks and four steals. He’s got a knack for finding the ball and if he gets the starting nod on Friday against New Orleans, expect similar results.

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