(Mandatory Credit: Justin Ford, USA TODAY Sports)
There are just three games on tonight’s playoff schedule, and while the center spot is particularly thin, there are a couple of decent value plays at other positions. Make sure to jump on any source of cap relief you can find, and use the extra money to top load your lineup with as many high-priced studs as possible.
G Chris Paul, Clippers vs. Spurs
$8,100 salary | 16.2% of cap
Paul was matchup nightmare for the Spurs during the regular season, and his dominance continued in Game 1. He scored 32 points on 65.0% shooting and finished with 52.25 fantasy points. He is a must-start option.
F Blake Griffin, Clippers vs. Spurs
$7,900 salary | 15.8% of cap
Like his teammate, Paul, Griffin’s success against the Spurs has carried over into the postseason. He averaged 47.28 fantasy points in three regular season meetings, and he piled up 61.50 as he stuffed the stat sheet in Game 1.
C Marc Gasol, Grizzlies vs. Trail Blazers
$6,800 salary | 13.6% of cap
You won’t find a reliable center option for less than $6,000 tonight, and Gasol offers a safe, strong floor while costing a bit less than the top three options at the position. His versatility was on display against the Trail Blazers throughout the regular season, and he was at it again in Game 1 as he flirted with a triple-double on his way to 46.75 fantasy points.
F Kawhi Leonard, Spurs at Clippers
$6,900 salary | 13.8% of cap
Although the Spurs got crushed in Game 1, Leonard was a bright spot. He took advantage of a Clippers team that has been awful at defending small forwards all year and finished with 36.00 fantasy points. Leonard has now topped 30.00 in eight straight games and should be one of the safest plays available.
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F Thaddeus Young, Nets at Hawks
$4,400 salary | 8.8% of cap
Including a pair of regular season games, Young is averaging 30.42 fantasy points in three April meetings with Atlanta. He notched a double-double and 32.00 in Game 1, and he played 40 minutes as Brooklyn rode its starting five most of the game. Young looks like a safe bet for solid production, and his price won’t break the bank.
G Ben Udrih, Grizzlies vs. Trail Blazers
$2,700 salary | 5.4% of cap
With Mike Conley playing through a foot injury, Udrih was the surprise star of Game 1, finishing with 39.25 fantasy points. He actually split minutes with Conley evenly in the series opener, and he looks like the top source of serious cap relief available.
F Al Horford, Hawks vs. Nets
$6,100 salary | 12.2% of cap
Horford is dealing with a dislocated pinkie finger, and he struggled with his shot a bit in Game 1. He shot 5-of-12 from the field, scoring 10 points and finishing with 26.50 fantasy points. On a thin night at the center spot, don’t pay up for the injured Horford.
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