This article is part of our Yahoo DFS Basketball series.
We have a solid Wednesday night slate on tap, as eight games are on the docket. There are several advantageous positional matchups to exploit and a good trio of candidates that may be best to steer clear of due to a combination of circumstances/salary.
Jamal Murray, DEN at SAC ($26): Murray is cooking, averaging 25.3 points, 8.0 assists, 6.0 rebounds and 2.0 steals in 40.0 minutes across the past three games. The Kings didn't have an answer for him when these teams faced off just yesterday. It feels safe to go back to the well. Notably, Murray has taken at least six free throws in each of the past three games as well, signaling that he's becoming more confident and aggressive since recovering from his injury.
Jordan Clarkson, UTA at GSW ($23): Clarkson has scored 34.6 to 36.9 Yahoo points in the last three games and is averaging 31.1 per contest for the season, all excellent numbers relative to his very modest salary. The veteran guard is shooting a sizzling 46.8 percent from three-point range over his last six contests as well, and the Warriors have already allowed 37.3 and 37.8 Yahoo points to him in two prior encounters. The Warriors also allow the second-most Yahoo points to shooting guards on the season (44.6).
Guard to Avoid
D'Angelo Russell, MIN at NOP ($26): Russell naturally has plenty of upside, but he's in a slump with 38.0 percent shooting, including 25.0 percent from three-point range in the last four games. That's led to three sub-30-Yahoo-point tallies in that span. He now draws a tough matchup Wednesday against a Pelicans squad allowing the ninth-lowest offensive efficiency rating to point guards (24.9) and just 40.5 percent shooting to the position.
Kevin Durant, BKN at ATL ($47): Durant's inclusion is always self-explanatory, but there's an even stronger case than usual to be made for him Wednesday. KD put up 47.8 Yahoo points across 36 minutes in his one previous encounter with the Hawks this season, and Atlanta comes in allowing the third-highest offensive efficiency rating to small forwards (23.9). The Hawks are also conceding the fourth-most Yahoo points to threes (49.5) in the last seven contests, and Durant is shooting a blistering 59.9 percent, including 41.6 percent from distance, in his previous 14 games.
Lonnie Walker, LAL at MIA ($14): Walker makes for an intriguing and likely low-rostered value play Wednesday versus a Heat team that's been an absolute sieve against small forwards all season. Miami is surrendering an NBA-high 30.1 offensive efficiency rating to threes on the season and the fourth-most Yahoo points per game to the position (42.9). That latter figure is partly the result of the Heat giving up the most assists (4.9) and most made threes (3.2) per game to small forwards, while Walker is draining 39.3 percent of his shots from behind the arc on a career-high 5.4 three-point attempts per contest.
Forward to Avoid
Deni Avdija, WAS vs. PHO ($20): Avdija has been under 16 Yahoo points in two of his last three games, and he's scored single-digit actual points in four of the previous six contests. The young wing's salary is elevated for his floor, and he also has a thorny matchup on his hands Wednesday against a Suns squad allowing the third-fewest Yahoo points per game to small forwards for the season.
Nikola Vucevic, CHI vs. MIL ($28): Vucevic is coming off a clunker against the Rockets on Monday night, but he'd scored over 40 Yahoo points in three of his previous four games. Vucevic is averaging 35.6 Yahoo points per game on the season overall, and he scored 32 Yahoo points across 30 minutes in his one previous meeting versus the Bucks. Before his unusually inefficient 4-for-13 night from the field versus Houston, Vucevic had also been on an extended heater, shooting 59.8 percent, including 44.2 percent from distance, in the previous nine games.
Wendell Carter, ORL at DET ($23): Carter might still be best left for tournaments Wednesday due to a likely ongoing minutes restriction, but he should bump back up over 20 minutes after logging 19 in each of his first two games back from an extended layoff due to a foot injury. Carter scored 24.6 Yahoo points against the Lakers on Tuesday night, and he'll have another favorable matchup on tap Wednesday against a Pistons squad allowing the sixth-highest offensive efficiency rating to centers (34.0), as well as the fourth-highest offensive efficiency rating to second-unit players (44.7). Detroit has given up 55 Yahoo points per game to centers in the last 15 games and the third-most points in the paint for the season (53.9).
Center to Avoid
Mo Bamba, ORL at DET ($13): With Carter back from his injury and expected to continue ramping up his minutes Wednesday, Bamba is a player that you can feel comfortable avoiding. The big man has been at 20 minutes or less in five straight and eight of his last 10 games as well, and he's scored under 20 Yahoo points in five of those contests.