In our NBA Fantasy Basketball Daily Shopper series, RotoBaller Brad Leibfried brings you his expert picks for NBA Daily League contests on DraftStreet.
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The Daily NBA Fantasy Shopper: NBA Expert Picks for DraftStreet - 12/18/2013
PG: Patrick Mills ($8,976): With Tony Parker out for the next two games with a shin injury, Mills figures to take over at the point. Mills puts up very solid per-36-minute numbers of 17.7 points, 3 assists, 3 rebounds and 2.4 steals. Those seem a bit lofty, but for the fact that he is likely to lead a team that is tenth in the league averaging 102.9 points a game. For this modest price you are not likely to find a better steal on the night.
SG: Monta Ellis ($13,434): Ellis is coming off of likely the worst game of his season, in which he posted just 7 points and 5 assists against Milwaukee. Look for Ellis to respond with a big game tonight, even against a great defender in Tony Allen. Ellis has played much better at home this season, which is where he is tonight. Additionally, prior to his last game, he had posted five out of six games in which he scored over 20 points and 4 assists. With his price on its way down, it is the perfect time to buy stock in Ellis.
SF: Kawhi Leonard ($11,776): Leonard will never blow you away with big point or rebounding totals, but he contributes in nearly every category. Over the past two weeks, he’s put up 12.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.3 steals a game. He should also be asked to take on more playmaking responsibility with Parker sidelined. With Tony Allen likely to be on the Spurs guards, Leonard should be able to provide a solid all-around game.
PF: Josh Smith ($13,313): After nearly seven weeks in Detroit, Smith appears to finally have found his role in the Pistons offense. He has posted two great back-to-back lines in his past two games: Sunday he had 31 points, 7 rebounds and 4 assists, and he followed that up on Monday with 30 points and 7 more rebounds. The Celtics have a top-five defense, but Jeff Green is likely to struggle with Smith’s size, so look for J-Smoove to continue his hot streak.
C: Al Horford ($16,561): After a bit of a mini slump, Horford seems to have found his form and has been posting some big fantasy lines. Last week, he had a 34 point 15 rebound performance against Washington, and in the Hawks last game, he posted a solid 19 points, 11 rebounds and 5 assists. His matchup tonight should only help matters, as Atlanta faces a Kings team that is 25th in the league, allowing over 102 points per game.
U: Jimmy Butler ($8,930): After missing a few weeks with a toe injury, Butler has come back to have a few solid games. With Derrick Rose and Kirk Hinrich out, Butler is likely to be asked to be more of a playmaker tonight against Houston. Even though he has not scored a ton since he returned, Butler has contributed enough across the board with 5 steals and 2 blocks in those three games. The Rockets are currently 28th in the league in points allowed, and likely have a gimpy James Harden guarding Butler. All of these factors point to Butler busting out for a big game for a great price.
U: Andrea Bargnani ($11,288): Since taking over for Tyson Chandler, Bargnani has been consistent in his scoring, rebounding and blocked shots. Over his past two weeks, he has put up 14 points, 5 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks a contest. With news that Amare Stoudemire will miss this game with a knee injury, Bargnani’s value increases, as he should play huge minutes against Milwaukee. The Bucks front line has been a mess outside of John Henson, so the possibility of a big double-double is certainly there for Bargnani tonight.