This article is part of our FanDuel NBA series.
Thursday's NBA slate features five games and begins at 8:00 PM Eastern time. Read on to see which options in this slate stand out as value plays at their respective prices. FanDuel's format only counts the eight highest scores in your nine-player lineup, so keep that in mind when making your selections.
Lonzo Ball, LAL at SAC ($6,000): With LeBron James (groin) and Rajon Rondo (finger) both sidelined, the rock should find its way into Ball's hands often. This will be the first game the Lakers play without LeBron, but we've seen what Ball is capable of when Rondo has missed extended time. During Rondo's previous 17-game absence, Ball averaged 9.3 points, 5.6 rebounds, 5.1 assists and a combined 2.4 steals/blocks. He was better towards the end of that stretch, however, averaging 13.2 points, 6.2 rebounds, 5.8 assists and a combined 3.8 steals/blocks (38.1 fantasy points) during the final five contests. At just $6,000, he's nearly a lock.
Eric Bledsoe, MIL vs. NY ($7,200): Bledsoe's good for a little bit of everything on most nights, as illustrated by his 16.5 PPG, 5.0 RPG and 5.6 APG over the past eight games, in addition to season averages of 1.3 steals and 0.5 blocks per game. A Knicks team that's won just once in its past 11 contests and gives up 115.7 points per game – fourth-most in the NBA – should allow Bledsoe to stuff the stat sheet effectively, especially with the Bucks playing at home. Milwaukee's whole team takes its game to another level at Fiserv Forum, posting a 14-3 record there compared to a 9-7 mark elsewhere.
Klay Thompson, GS vs. POR ($6,900): Thompson's a prolific shooter primed for improvement from deep. After exceeding 40.0 percent from 3-point range in each of his first seven NBA seasons, he's toiling away at just 33.7 percent at the moment. Luckily for him, Thompson gets an ideal opportunity to start a turnaround here, creating a nice buy-low opportunity for fantasy owners. Nobody has been kinder to shooters than the visiting Trail Blazers, who are allowing opponents to convert on a league-high 37.9 percent of their attempts from 3-point range.
Andre Iguodala, GS vs. POR ($4,300): Iguodala plays a very different style from his teammate Thompson, and his ability to stuff the stat sheet is conducive to fantasy success. The versatile veteran has scored 28.8 or more fantasy points twice in the past three games, and he showed that he can still get it done offensively with 23 points, five rebounds and four assists on Christmas. With at least 23 minutes of playing time in each of the past three contests as well, Iguodala's usage has trended up enough to make him worth locking in at just $4,300.
Joe Ingles, UTA vs. PHI ($6,300): Ingles is still shooting just 38.7 percent from 3-point range after back-to-back seasons of 44.0 percent or more, but he's starting to heat up. Over the past four games, he's 12-for-27 from deep (44.4 percent), and the rest of Jingling Joe's game has improved as well, with averages of 15.8 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 5.8 APG and 1.5 steals per game. This recent hot streak should persist against a 76ers team that's 6-10 in away games and is yet to notch a road win against a Western Conference foe.
Wilson Chandler, PHI at UTA ($4,200): Chandler's production – and by extension, his price – has been dragged down by injuries. But he's returned good value when he plays recently, scoring at least 24.0 fantasy points in three of his past four appearances. Coming off a season-high 39 minutes of action Tuesday, Chandler should have no problem outperforming his $4,200 valuation if he sees similar usage here.
Noah Vonleh, NY at MIL ($6,100): Described as the most complete player on the Knicks by coach David Fizdale, Vonleh showed off his all-around skills with 14 points, 15 rebounds and two blocks against this same Bucks team Tuesday. Having played at least 31 minutes in five of the past six games, the bouncy big man has the combination of ability and opportunity necessary to repeat that performance in this rematch.
Kyle Kuzma, LAL at SAC ($6,700): Kuzma is the Lakers' second-leading scorer at 18.1 PPG, making him the leading candidate to carry Los Angeles' offense as LeBron sits out. Kuzma should have no trouble exploiting a Kings team that's among the league's three most generous in both points and rebounds allowed per game.
Clint Capela, HOU vs. BOS ($9,000): Capela has stepped up since Chris Paul strained his hamstring for the umpteenth time, averaging 18.5 PPG and 23.0 PPG in the first two games of Paul's absence. His presence on the glass will likely be felt significantly by a Celtics team that surrenders 54.6 rebounds per game – ninth-most in the league.