NBA $5,000 Thursday Special

Today’s Thursday Special has a strong ten-game slate. More than half of today’s matchups are projected to post 230+ points, so the games should be exciting and the fantasy scores should be big. Additionally, the Nuggest @ Lakers game has plenty riding on it, with a loss for the Lakers almost categorically ending any chance of them making the playoffs and ending LeBron’s insane run of dominance across the league. There’s plenty to keep you entertained today, but if you need a little more excitement, why not put a team together and make a run at the $5,000 Thursday Special?

Point Guard

Kyrie Irving $9.400

Kyrie is coming off a back-to-back, but he should be well rested after blowing out the Warriors. Kyrie was great in the blowout, playing just 30 minutes, but putting up 19 points and 11 assists for 44.5 fantasy points. Kyrie has been consistent lately too, averaging just shy of 41 fantasy points per game over his last 4.With a good and fast-paced matchup against the Kings, I expect Kyrie to score well. The Kings are competitive enough to keep it close, so I think the Celts will need everything they can get from Kyrie, and he will provide it.

Bryn Forbes $4,100

I don’t think anyone could recommend Forbes with an certainty, given how poor some of his performances can be. However, he usually performs well against the right matchups and today he has the league’s best. The Hawks give up more points at guard than anyone and Forbes is capable of capitalising. He has the starting gig, he’s going to see 20+ minutes and he has a track record of putting up 25+ fantasy points against the league’s weaker teams. This is a great bargain option for your Thursday Special.

Shooting Guard

Bradley Beal $10,500

Bradley Beal has been in incredible form since John Wall went down. In fact, he’s averaging an insane 53.5 fantasy points over his last ten games. It’s insane the amount of return Beal is providing even at a salary over $10k. At the moment he’s almost a no-brainer and he should be heavily considered until his price breaks the $11K mark or until his form declines (less likely).

Damyean Dotson $4,600

Dotson has been producing some very solid basketball for the Knicks for quite a while now. He’s started the last 7 games and seems very likely to stay there, as he has earned it. Dotson is averaging 25.6 for the Knicks as a starter and as scored as many as 39 fantasy points just last week against the Spurs. There aren’t many – if any – blips on his record and he makes a great value fantasy play across all fantasy formats.

Small Forward

Will Barton $6,200

Will Barton is never going to be a guy that you can pencil in with certainty for cash games. He will forever be the guy that you have to hope to pick on his good days in tournaments. I am hoping that today is one of those days. The lakers defense has been the laughing stock of the league as late, with backdoor cuts and straight line drives tearing them apart. You know who is great at capitalising on those things? Will Barton and the Denver Nuggets. I expect Barton to produce a very strong fantasy score against the Lakers today, built on a ton of open dunks and layups, as well as some strong takes in transition. As is usually the case with Barton, this selection could be hit or miss. But I’m fairly confident in it hitting.

Gordon Hayward $4,800

Gordon Hayward had another of those “I’m back” games against the Warriors. And while it would be foolish to think that Hayward is back to his best (given his season form to date), he did look a lot better than he has throughout the season. Hayward has a fairly strong history of backing up his good games with 2 or more strong showings, so I think it’s wise to bet on him today. In January he followed up a 41.7 score against Minny with a 42.2 fantasy point performance and in February he followed up a 36.3 score against Philly with a 37 fantasy point game against Detroit. Can Hayward back it up today? Let’s hope so.

Power Forward

Marquese Chriss $3,600

Marquese Chriss hasn’t had much to offer over the last ten games, but he did have 37.9 against the Nets last time they met. This might be a bit of a risk – I certainly don’t think much of Chriss’s game – but at the minimum salary I think it’s worth betting on Chriss to repeat his last performance. The Nets are a good matchup for guards and bigs alike, so there should be plenty of opportunities for Chriss to score at the rim and if worst comes to worse, he should still provide at least around 12 fantasy points at worst.


Nikola Jokic $10,900

Nikola Jokic should absolutely tear the Lakers apart. As long as the Lakers can keep it competitive, Jokic will be well positioned to slice and dice their defense apart. They struggle to rebound, they struggle to guard cutters and they don’t defend well down low (or anywhere really). I’m predicting a very fast triple-double for Jokic today and a massive fantasy score to go with it.