Picking players who will go above and beyond their supposed value (their price) is essential for winning in daily fantasy sports. It's much harder for higher-priced guys to hit and/or exceed their value because they are expected to perform substantially. Lower-priced guys can hit their value rather easily, but the problem with these players is that hitting their value means a low amount of points. Identifying those lower-priced guys that have upside and may put up a lot more fantasy points than expected is the difference between going home with empty pockets or cashing out.
Mario Chalmers, Memphis Grizzlies
FanDuel Price: $5,000
Chalmers has been great over the past five games, averaging 15 points, 3.2 assists and and three steals per game. A dynamic pick-pocketer, he always gives u the upside of multiple steals, which is important in NBA DFS. With him scoring and assisting efficiently as of late, as well, there's plenty to like, especially coming up against a weak Phoenix Suns team that has had a very hard time stopping anyone on offense.
Jerryd Bayless, Milwaukee Bucks
FanDuel Price: $4,100
With Michael Carter-Williams done for the season, Bayless should continue to see over 30 minutes per game. Giannis Antetokounmpo has actually been running the show lately as the point-forward, but there is still a large role for Bayless to play. He's a capable scorer and assister. Given his opportunity and price tag, he's both a safe pick and an upside play on any given night.
Zach LaVine, Minnesota Timberwolves
FanDuel Price: $5,500
Many NBA DFS players have probably been using Lavine for the past few weeks. His price still remains fairly low though, which has resulted in him continuing to crush his value. He's gone over 28 FanDuel points in each of his last five games, while racking up an average of 38 minutes per game. One of these days, he's going to explode for over 40 FanDuel points and win some fantasy player a lot of money.
Wesley Matthews, Dallas Mavericks
FanDuel Price: $4,400
Matthews is a better "real" basketball player than a "fantasy" one. That said, he's pretty consistent in terms of fantasy production. He doesn't get many rebounds and assists, but he averages a little over 12 points a game and over the last six games he's collected nine steals. It isn't a sexy pick for your DFS team, but if you're looking to spend up at other positions, Matthews allows you the flexibility to do so.
Harrison Barnes, Golden State Warriors
FanDuel Price: $4,500
Barnes is really cheap right now, mainly because he doesn't do much with his minutes. Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green take up most of the auxiliary categories, leaving Barnes with the necessity of a big scoring night for him to score plenty of fantasy points. Green is questionable for tonight's game, which could lead to a larger role for Barnes. Also questionable is Barnes' backup, Andre Iguoudala, who occupies plenty of minutes from the bench. If one, or both, are out, look for Barnes to capitalize and perform well over value.
Shabazz Muhammad, Minnesota Timberwolves
FanDuel Price: $4,200
After a painfully inefficient start to the season, Shabazz has since recaptured some of the flashes of form that he showed late last season. His playing time has been more consistent in 2016, though it is still a little sporadic. Still, he's going to score if he's out there and he's an underrated source of rebounds, which is a recipe for fantasy points. He should continue to see 20+ minutes, which puts his fantasy point floor at around 17. Not bad for a guy priced that low, who is also capable of putting up a lot of baskets.
Jabari Parker, Milwaukee Bucks
FanDuel Price: $6,000
Parker has been outstanding over his last 10 games. He's gone under 31 FanDuel points just twice during that span, while eclipsing 43 three times. He's still, somehow, somewhat cheap, and his minute count has been ridiculous as of late. With his playing time mightily increasing throughout the year, his performance has followed suit. At his price range, you won't find a safer option with as much upside as Parker.
David Lee, Dallas Mavericks
FanDuel Price: $4,500
Yes, believe it or not, David Lee plays on the Dallas Mavericks. I'm just as surprised as many of you might be, but he has looked reborn over the past few days. Yesterday, he filled up the stat sheet with 18 points, 12 rebounds, three assists and four blocks. That was after going 12 and 11 with one assist, one block and one steal the game before in just 18 minutes. Mavs coach Rick Carlisle is clearly intent on using Lee efficiently, and given his price range, you might as well take a chance on him.
Tim Duncan, San Antonio Spurs
FanDuel Price: $5,100
Time really does fly. Can you imagine calling Tim Duncan a "value play" a few years ago? I can't, but this is where we are. For the first time in a while, the Spurs are finally fully healthy. That full health should lead to better chemistry and a solid performance, starting tonight in Indiana. Though Duncan has occasional duds, when he's playing and not resting (like on Saturday against the Kings), he puts up decent numbers, at least from a fantasy perspective. The Pacers' center duo of Ian Mahinmi and Jordan Hill shouldn't be too daunting for Duncan, so he should have a good game considering his depleted price tag.