NBA DFS Picks: Yahoo Plays and Strategy for Saturday, February 24

NBA DFS Picks: Yahoo Plays and Strategy for Saturday, February 24

This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.

We took last weekend off for the All-Star break, and it was quite a disappointment. While the Saturday festivities were solid, the All-Star game Sunday was truly pathetic. The good news is that we're back to normal basketball now, and I can't tell you how excited I am to dive into this weekend's games. Unfortunately, we only have three games on this Saturday card, so let's go ahead and get into it! 

Guards

Jalen Brunson, NYK vs. BOS ($43)

The Brunson contract seemed ridiculous when NY handed him over $100 million, but it's looking like a bargain now. The Knicks point guard has taken over this offense in the absence of Julius Randle, scoring at least 38 Yahoo points in 24 of his last 26 games. He's also got a 46-point average in that span, seeing a bump in shot attempts, minutes and usage since Randle went down. Facing Boston can be scary for most players, but JB has at least 31 Y! points in all three of their matchups this year. 

Cam Thomas, BKN at MIN ($26)

This one is risky, but Thomas has a massive upside. This guy is being asked to carry this bad Brooklyn offense, averaging 18.4 shots and 32 minutes in his 31 starts this year. More importantly, he's averaging 32 Yahoo points per game in this expanded role. That could rise even more now that Spencer Dinwiddie is out of town, with Cam collecting at least 37 Y! points in seven of his last 11 games. The matchup with Minnesota is terrifying, but Thomas tallied 37 fantasy points against them despite coming off the bench. 

Guard to Avoid

Dennis Schroder, BKN at MIN ($21)

Schroder was a pleasant surprise through the opening months of the season, but this trade to Brooklyn has been a nightmare for his fantasy value. He's now the backup point guard behind Ben Simmons, scoring 7.9 and 8.1 Yahoo points in his two most recent outings. He's also barely playing 20 minutes a night and won't have much success in that diminished role. Not to mention, Minnesota ranks first in points allowed and defensive efficiency. 

Forwards

Paolo Banchero, ORL at DET ($42)

Banchero was the top pick in the 2022 draft for a reason, and he's truly developing into a stud. He's scored at least 33 Yahoo points in 11 of his last 12 games while providing a 43-point average in that span. That's the stud we've been waiting to see, and it's no surprise since he's developed into Orlando's primary playmaker. The best part of this is the matchup with Detroit's disastrous defense, ranked 27th in points allowed and 28th in defensive efficiency. That was clear when Paolo provided at least 36 Y! points in their two matchups this year. 

Ausar Thompson, DET vs. ORL ($18)

There are always players that see major bumps because of the trade deadline and Thompson is one of them. Detroit decided to clean house and it's forced Ausar into a 30-minute role as a starter. Thompson has been tremendous as a starter all year, averaging 30 Yahoo points per game across 29 minutes in his 30 starts. He's also scored at least 29 fantasy points in three of his last four games since being shifted back into a starter's role, and we saw Thompson total 33 Y! points in his last matchup with Orlando. 

Forward to Avoid

Cameron Johnson, BKN at MIN ($17)

Here we are with another Brooklyn player. This team has been a nightmare for two months now, and Cam hasn't helped their cause. His struggles have earned him a spot on the bench, scoring 12 and 15 Yahoo points since the demotion. That's horrifying since this guy has been injured all year, playing fewer than 20 minutes a night in this newfound role. We already discussed that the T'Wolves are a terrifying matchup, surrendering the fifth-fewest fantasy points to opposing wings. 

Center

Rudy Gobert, MIN vs. BKN ($31)

Gobert is on his way to a Defensive Player of the Year Award, and it's hard to understand why he's been undervalued on Yahoo all season. The big man has been sitting around $30 all year, despite averaging 36 Yahoo points per game. He's also established a 30-point floor with his rebounding and defense, making him a safe option on such a short slate. Brooklyn is not a bad matchup either, ranked 21st in defensive efficiency ratings. In their three matchups since the start of last year, Gobert is generating a 39-point average against this inept Nets defense. 

Center to Avoid

Isaiah Hartenstein, NYK vs. BOS ($25)

We had Hartenstein as a recommendation numerous times over the last two months, but something's not right with his role right now. The big man has been in and out of the lineup with an Achilles issue, playing just 15 and 11 minutes in his two most recent outings. He also scored just 4.4 Y! points in his most recent game on Friday and is clearly being limited in his return from an injury. The Celtics are a concerning matchup, too, sitting second in defensive efficiency and fifth in points allowed.

The author(s) of this article may play in daily fantasy contests including – but not limited to – games that they have provided recommendations or advice on in this article. In the course of playing in these games using their personal accounts, it's possible that they will use players in their lineups or other strategies that differ from the recommendations they have provided above. The recommendations in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of RotoWire. Joel Bartilotta plays in daily fantasy contests using the following accounts: DraftKings: Joelbartilotta Yahoo: Joelbartilotta.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joel Bartilotta
Joel has 20 years of Fantasy experience, and can recall riding a young Daunte Culpepper to a championship in the 2003-04 season in his inaugural fantasy year. He covers NBA, NFL, daily fantasy, EPL, and MLB for RotoWire.
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