NBA Core Four – 10/31

Happy Halloween everybody! While people will be out and about trick or treating with their families, we’ll remain on our grind to help you dominate your DFS contests tonight, even on a short 4-game slate. Nearly identical to the first edition of the “Core Four” articles for this season, I will be highlighting the four players that I am building the Fantasy Forecast NBA lineup around tonight. What makes this edition even more fun is that I can use a Halloween narrative centered around my favorite play today…Boogie!

DeMarcus Cousins | $9,900

I’m hoping that it’s as obvious to everyone else as it is to me, but DeMarcus Cousins has the highest ceiling and arguably the highest floor on the slate tonight. While his career numbers against Dwight Howard have not been “Boogie like” (11 games, 16 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 1.3 spg), those numbers came in an average of 27.1 minutes per game, far below the clip that Cousins is now accustomed to playing. Through the first pair of games for the Kings, Boogie is averaging 30 points, 9.7 boards, and 2.7 steals over 31.3 minutes per game and faces the Hawks defense who have actually been rather generous to opposing centers. Through their first couple games, the Hawks are allowing opposing centers to score an average of 42.3 Fanduel points per game, and they have yet to face a center of Cousins’ caliber. On a slate as ugly as tonight, Cousins should be an automatic lock.

DeMar DeRozan | $7,900

While already one of the more dominant and electric scorers in the league, DeRozan has really come out of the gates cooking this season. In two games, he’s averaging 36 points per game to go along with 5.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals in 36.5 minutes per game.  While the sluggish play of Kyle Lowry has certainly put more of the scoring burden on DeRozan’s shoulders, this outburst could be a sign of a huge season. He also gets a cakewalk of a matchup this evening against the Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets are currently the fourth worst team in the league when it comes to defending the shooting guard position from a fantasy perspective. They are currently allowing 42.8 Fanduel points per game to opposing shooting guards and with a player as hot as DeRozan coming in, there’s a nice chance that we’ll see that number rise after tonight.

Dennis Schroder | $6,300

With two somewhat expensive building blocks, we also need a couple affordable players, and one that I expect to shatter value is Dennis Schroder. So far this season, Schroder has impressed as the full-time starting point guard so far, especially in his last outing. Against the 76ers Schroder posted 11 points with 11 assists, which is a huge sign after only averaging 5.5 assists per game last season. While he only had 2 assists against the Wizards in his first game, you have to expect him to flirt with an average of 7-8 per game. The Kings are surprisingly allowing the fewest Fanduel points per game to opposing PG, but I don’t expect Schroder to have much trouble against Ty Lawson tonight.

Taj Gibson | $5,400

I expect Taj to be a cash lock in virtually everyone’s lineup tonight for two reasons. He had an extremely impressive preseason, even at age 31, and has posted lines of 18/10 and 12/8 in his first two outings. Second, he’s got the best matchup of any Bulls’ player tonight against an undersized Trevor Booker. Gibson is likely to stay within his regular 25-30 minute range, but is more than capable of getting you 30 Fanduel points for an extremely affordable price. The Nets have allowed 42.1 Fanduel points to opposing PF this season, and with Bobby Portis cemented in the background, this is Gibson’s night to shine.

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