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NBA Matchup Plays: Friday

by Scott Malewig
Updated On: December 3, 2018, 6:01 pm ET

We’ve revamped the NBA Targets post to give a little bit more of a diverse look at each slate rather than focusing on just a couple games.  Here's a preview of each matchup and my thoughts on the top picks, other picks to consider, and some players to avoid for tonight.

 

LAC @ TOR over/under 211, Clippers -1

This game is going to fly way under the radar tonight with all of the matchups on tap, as both of these teams have been very disappointing lately. That said, the second highest over under and closest spread of the night should not be ignored. There are a ton of great matchups in this one including DeMar DeRozan against the Clippers wings and Blake Griffin against the Raptors power forwards. I also fully expect Jamal Crawford to bounce back in a big way.

 

GSW @ ATL over/under 212.5, Warriors -2

Two close games in a row for the Warriors? It’s almost too good to be true. I’m awfully stoked to watch this game tonight, as excited as I’ve been in a while. Jeff Teague and Steph Curry should battle all night and I’m a big believer in the Hawks as a whole. I think this could be one of the most fun games of the entire season, but there’s not a ton of fantasy goodness to exploit outside of Curry and Jeff Teague.

 

 

Attack


Stephen Curry  -- PG GSW

Curry is coming off a red-hot 50 point night on Wednesday in a fairly close game and heads into what should be one of the more competitive games they play this season. The Hawks are 24th in defensive efficiency against point guards over the past ten games and Curry is assuredly going to find out if he’s hot again early in this game. He’ll likely play some pretty heavy minutes in this one assuming the line is remotely correct, so he’s a top play tonight.

Chris Paul  -- PG LAC

The guy who is most going to fly under the radar tonight is Chris Paul. He’s playing in the game mentioned above that sets up perfectly for a ton of fantasy points from a point guard (Don’t forget an underpriced Kyle Lowry either) and is coming off a game where he was quite obviously embarrassed last night. Paul should come out with something to prove tonight and dominate the game against a Raptors team that was 28th in the league against point guards in January.

 

Greg Monroe --- PF DET

Monroe has been playing more and more minutes with Andre Drummond lately, which has hurt his per minute production, but has also really stabilized his floor time. Monroe should play heavy minutes today against a Denver team that has been playing just awful defense against frontcourts, bottom five against both big man positions and he’s better at running the floor with Denver than Drummond, so expect him to have a bit of an edge for minutes there.

 

Tobias Harris -- SF ORL

The Los Angeles Lakers are dead last against small forwards over the past ten games and it’s pretty likely that Tobias Harris will be starting at that position against them tonight. Harris has been hot over his last two games, averaging 20.5 points in almost 39 minutes per game. Harris looks healthy and confident once again, so look for him to be aggressive in a great matchup.

Robert Covington  -- SF PHI

Covington has racked up 15 threes and 14 steals over his past five games and with Michael Carter-Williams banged up and potentially out, he’s going to have to keep helping carry the load on offense in a great matchup with the Celtics. Covington can contribute in basically every category and his minutes seem to be the safest of the Sixers wing players. Evan Turner, a notoriously poor defender, will likely start on him tonight as well.

 

Also Consider


Marcus Smart  -- PG BOS

It sounds like the Celtics are going to keep Smart in the starting lineup the rest of the season and that’s good news for his potential fantasy owners. He’s averaging 39 minutes in his last two starts and outside of injury, there’s no reason for the Celtics to limit him. The 76ers have improved against point guards of late, but that’s been mostly due to Michael Carter-Williams’ improvement and he might not play tonight with a lower body injury.

Jamal Crawford  -- SG LAC

Crawford looks locked in to heavy minutes right now with JJ Redick injured and the Clippers sporting one of the worst benches anyone has ever seen. The Raptors were 24th in defensive efficiency against shooting guards in January and with Greivis Vasquez manning the position, that isn’t going to improve any time soon. If Crawford gets hot, he could win you some games by himself tonight.

 

 

Avoid


DeMarre Carroll -- SF ATL

Carroll has a really tempting price for a small forward in a high-scoring game tonight, but there are a couple reasons I’m going to try to keep him out of the bulk of my lineups. The Warriors defense is rock solid on the wings with even Harrison Barnes being a net positive defender this season, not to mention the stifling duo of Klay Thompson and Andre Iguodala. Carroll is set to chase Thompson around the perimeter all game and Thompson’s defenders have seen an 18% decrease in rebounds this season.

Scott Malewig
Scott Malewig writes the NBA Over/Under Watch for Rotoworld.com and is the co-founder of The Fake Basketball. Scott can be found on Twitter @Sports_25toLife where he'll likely be tweeting about the last NBA game you'd think he'd be watching.