NBA DFS Starting Five: December 4
Justin Fensterman brings you his top five players to build your lineups around for tonight's NBA DFS main slate.
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J. Embiid - C
Joel Embiid hit 9-of-17 shots and 9-of-12 free throws for 27 points, nine rebounds, five assists and a steal in 31 minutes of Monday's exciting 132-130 win over the Spurs.
This was a far cry from his 41-point, 21-rebound explosion on Saturday and he didn't manage to hit a triple or block a shot tonight. But he played well with the game on the line, made some big plays and helped will the Sixers to a win after they blew a big lead in the fourth quarter. Tobias Harris scored 25, Josh Richardson added 19 points despite hitting just 5-of-15 shots, and Ben Simmons scored just eight points before fouling out.
Added 10:56 pm (EST)
K. Johnson - SF
Keldon Johnson came off the bench and hit 4-of-6 shots, a 3-pointer and 6-of-7 free throws for a career-high 15 points, three rebounds and one assist in Monday's loss to the Sixers.
Johnson played well off the bench and probably got some extra run with both Marco Belinelli and Bryn Forbes sitting this one out. The Spurs are basically playing for fun at this point and it's possible Gregg Popovich will continue to stick with Johnson going forward. Johnson also played 25 minutes on Sunday, so the minutes have been there for him lately and he made the most of them tonight.
Added 10:52 pm (EST)
D. DeRozan - SF
DeMar DeRozan hit 11-of-19 shots, a 3-pointer and 7-of-7 free throws on his way to 30 points, five rebounds, three assists, a steal and two blocks in Monday's tough 132-130 loss to the Sixers.
The Sixers were in control the whole night until the Spurs won the fourth quarter 43-33 behind DeRozan's 13 points. The red hot DeRozan inexplicably passed the ball to Jakob Poeltl (four points in 25 minutes) down one near the buzzer and he was unable to convert a contested layup to secure the win. Rudy Gay scored 24 for the Spurs and Derrick White came on late to chip in with 20 points and four triples in the loss.
Added 10:47 pm (EST)
J. Hart - SF
Josh Hart played through a hand injury and finished Monday's game with 15 points, seven rebounds and two 3-pointers on 5-of-6 shooting despite hurting his hand in a freak accident during the game.
Hart suffered a right hand laceration in a collision with the scorer's plexiglass and appeared to puncture his palm after breaking one of the panels. He was attended to briefly to stop the bleeding and looked good the rest of the way. He should be good to go going forward.
Added 9:37 pm (EST)
J. Holiday - SG
Jrue Holiday hit 6-of-12 shots and a 3-pointer for 15 points, four rebounds, three assists and a steal in Monday's win over the Grizzlies.
He got tangled up with Grayson Allen and tweaked his right ankle but stayed in the game and showed no ill effects after yelling in pain and staying down for a few moments. He should be good to go on Thursday against the Kings.
Added 9:33 pm (EST)
L. Ball - PG
Lonzo Ball hit just 2-of-7 shots (all 3-pointers) and 1-of-2 free throws for seven points, four rebounds, six assists and four steals in 35 minutes of Monday's win over the Grizzlies.
Ball was on fire prior to the shutdown but has struggled in the return, averaging just 6.0 points on 6-of-26 shooting. He needs to get it going if the Pelicans are going to win out and try to sneak into the playoffs but his shot's just not working right now. He's tough to trust in DFS right now but could turn it around at any time.
Added 9:29 pm (EST)
Z. Williamson - PF
Zion Williamson showed bursts of energy on Monday and finished with 23 points, seven rebounds and five assists on 9-of-21 shooting in a 109-99 win over the Grizzlies.
He was benched after getting his shot blocked and jogging down the court in the fourth quarter but was put back into the game, when he looked better and somewhat rejuvenated. Conditioning is still an issue for the big man but he took a step forward tonight. The score was 97-93 when he reentered in the fourth quarter and Zion and Brandon Ingram (24 points, 7 boards, 5 assists, 2 steals, 2 3-pointers) took over down the stretch to get the Pelicans the 109-99 win. Hopefully Zion will get at least 25 minutes per game going forward. If that happens, he'll be worth a look in DFS.
Added 9:24 pm (EST)
G. Allen - SG
Grayson Allen hit 6-of-10 shots and five 3-pointers for 17 points, one rebound, two assists and a steal in 31 minutes of Monday's loss to the Pelicans.
He did most of his damage in a stellar first half and is averaging 16 points and 3.5 3-pointers over his last two games. It's tough to say if he'll keep it going but he's averaging 29.5 minutes over his last two. If the minutes stick he should be an intriguing and cheap DFS option going forward.
Added 9:22 pm (EST)