14 Jan

Pacers’ Tyrese Haliburton stands out among top daily fantasy plays for Friday

Thursday’s main NBA slate was light, but Friday’s will feature 14 games. The action will begin with matchups between the Utah Jazz and Boston Celtics and the Atlanta Hawks and Indiana Pacers, respectively, at 7 p.m. ET. It’ll end with a trio of matchups that will tip at 10 p.m. ET, which will feature the Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings.

Are you looking to sort through all the options on DraftKings and FanDuel? We’ve got you covered. Here’s who you should keep an eye on as you look to build optimal lineups on both sites:

Stud: Tyrese Haliburton
Haliburton finished up December on a high note and is off to a strong start in 2024. The Indiana point guard is averaging 28.5 points, 11.5 assists, 5.5 rebounds, 2.0 blocks and a steal this month. Fantasy managers should be salivating over his second matchup against Trae Young this season. Dejounte Murray will look to eliminate Indiana’s advantage as Haliburton’s primary defender, but that didn’t stop the star facilitator from amassing 37 points and 16 assists in his first meeting with the Hawks this season.

Mid-tier: Jalen Johnson
Johnson asserted himself as a crucial rotation player for the Hawks as soon as he returned from a month-long layoff caused by a wrist injury in late December. The 22-year-old forward has averaged 19.5 points, 11 rebounds, and 3.8 assists through his first four games back on the hardwood. De’Andre Hunter’s absence has amplified Johnson’s importance, so his outlook against the league’s second-worst scoring defense is ideal. He posted 17 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and a pair of steals in his first meeting with the Pacers this campaign.

Value: Nikola Jovic
Jovic made his third start of the season in the Miami Heat’s last matchup with the Lakers and recorded season highs in minutes (28) and points (15). The Serbian forward has been given a chance to contribute while Jimmy Butler and Caleb Martin are out. While he’s only appeared in eight contests in 2023-24, he’ll likely get to handle a heavier workload than usual against the Phoenix Suns on Friday. Jovic has averaged 13.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 20 assists in the three career games he’s logged at least 25 minutes.

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