Today’s NBA Starting Lineups & Matchups 2/4/20: Zion and Giannis Face Off Tonight

Marquee Matchups

It’s a light night in the NBA with just four games, but there should be no shortage of good basketball with some outstanding matchups

San Antonio Spurs (22-27) at Los Angeles Lakers (37-11)

  • After a razor-thin loss to the Clippers last night, the Spurs are back at Staples Center for another tough matchup, facing the Lakers on the second night of a back-to-back.
  • The Lakers have a three-game lead for first place in the Western Conference, while last night’s loss has San Antonio in 10th place.
  • Tonight’s game is the third and final game of the regular-season series between the Spurs and Lakers. The Lakers have won both previous games.

Milwaukee Bucks (42-7) at New Orleans Pelicans  (20-30)

  • It’ll be a matchup between the current star forward vs. future star forward as Giannis and Zion face off in a matchup deserving of it’s TNT billing.
  • The Bucks have a league-leading record of 42-7, while the Pelicans are 11th in the West. The Bucks will be looking to re-start their winning streak after a loss recently, whereas the Pelicans would love to get a win at home.
  • For a more in-depth look at this matchup, read our matchup preview.

Charlotte Hornets (16-34) at Houston Rockets (31-16)

  • The Hornets have lost their last three games and it won’t get any easier as they travel to Houston for a matchup with the Rockets tonight.
  • Houston could be without Austin Rivers, Russell Westbrook and Clint Capela, but they’ve still won their last three games and James Harden provides enough offense to keep them going.
  • This will be the first of the inter-conference matchup between the Rockets and Hornets this season.

Portland Trail Blazers (23-27) at Denver Nuggets (34-16)

  • In a rematch of last season’s Western Conference semifinals matchup, Portland will travel to Denver looking for another win against a tough conference opponent.
  • While the Nuggets are number three in the West and Portland is just hanging on to number nine, Portland has won their last four games and are 7-3 in their last 10. The Nuggets lost their last game and are 6-4 in their last 10.
  • In their last matchup back in December, the Nuggets blew out the Trail Blazers 114-99. Hassan Whiteside had 33 points and 11 rebounds, but the Nuggets had a better team effort to secure the win.

Today’s Lineups

Top Predicted Performers

james hardenJames Harden, Houston Rockets

Harden will likely draw Devonte’ Graham, and as great a season as he has had, these are players on different tiers and I don’t see anyone on the Hornets really staying in front of Harden and finding a way to limit him. Harden, who is available for $11.6k on FanDuel, has a projection of 62.7 points, making him the top projected player of the night. With Russ out, he’ll take on the workload offensively and I expect him to perform well.

Giannis AntetokounmpoGiannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks

I was torn on whether to include Giannis or LeBron James here, but as bad as San Antonio has been defensively they have some perky defenders that will go after James. Giannis against an under .500 team like the Pelicans is usually a recipe for a big fantasy night. He is projected for 54.4 points and has a salary of $11.5k.

Potential Duds

Zion WilliamsonZion Williamson, New Orleans Pelicans

I’m not always right with these picks, and yesterday I put up a goose egg, but the last thing I want to do is take the easy way out and put up a bench player so I look to look at matchups. Zion to me is still an excellent value player on any team with his $7.1k salary, but in terms of players that could be potential duds to me tonight, he stands out. Not only is he matched up with a beast by the name of Giannis, but the Bucks defense is one of the best in the league, and they will be looking to make life hard for the rookie. He’s projected for 36.5 points tonight, but he’s been averaging about 32 fantasy points per game.

Bryn Forbes, San Antonio Spurs

Forbes isn’t really projected for a huge game, but his rare offensive burst nights are greatly being outweighed by his bad decision-making on a nightly basis. Not only is he playing in the second game of a back-to-back, but he will also likely be defended by either Danny Green or Avery Bradley, both known for their defense. Aldridge could be an option here as he likely draws Anthony Davis, but historically, Aldridge does well against LA.

For more fantasy basketball information, view our NBA Daily Fantasy Basketball Projections page.

  
Michael is Chief Editor at Lineups.com. He has decades of combined experience in traditional print journalism and online media and is the publisher of the Project Spurs Network, which includes 13 team-specific sports media sites and the flagship ProjectSpurs.com. He is also the creator of the first Spurs podcast and the longest-running sports podcast on the internet, the Spurscast, and was formerly the host of the News 4 San Antonio Sports Roundtable.

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