It is Tuesday, and we have a six-game slate on tap for NBA DFS! Hopefully, you all are enjoying the articles I am writing, and can always find me on Twitter @smitchell17 if you have questions, or just want to discuss NBA DFS!
TOP: Russell Westbrook ($9,400) – I truly like both Dame and RWB here for this top play at the PG spot, and honestly wouldn’t mind playing either. I went with the smaller price on RWB, and a few other reasons. Not only is he $500 cheaper than Dame, he is also facing Dame and POR, who has struggled mightily against the PG spot. RWB has put up back-to-back 51+ DK fantasy point games, and I truly expect nothing less for tonight when these two face off. RWB is the one leading the team in usage by a hefty margin, sitting at a massive 35.2% overall usage over the Rocket’s first two games, compared to just 27.0% for Harden. In three games against POR earlier this season, RWB averaged 39 mpg, 32.7 ppg, 11.3 rpg, 9.3 apg, 1.8 spg, and 0.8 bpg. I’d go out on a limb and say he’s had quite the success.
MID: De’Aaron Fox ($7,300) – Really like Fox as a contrarian look today, and I really don’t think that many will play him against DAL. However, he is fresh off a putrid 20 DK fantast point effort against the Magic where the Kings were down early and never recovered. I fully expect to hopefully see a more motivated Kings team today, but it won’t be easy, as the Mavs just lost a close one to the Suns in their last game as well. Nonetheless, Fox is fairly cheap for the upside he has, and he is still leading the team in usage rate at 33.0% for the first two games since the restart. He also has decent numbers from earlier in the season when these two teams played a duo of games, as he averaged 34 mpg, 21.5 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 8.0 apg, 1.0 spg, and 0.5 bpg. Think there is some nice contrarian value here on Fox today.
VALUE: Malcom Brogdon ($5,400) – It feels like major déjà vu this morning, it seems just like it was yesterday, when Malcolm Brogdon came back off an injury earlier in the season and had a really cheap price and then went for 40+ fantasy points, and then the next game his price really didn’t move. Sounds familiar? Does to me as well, and that’s because that’s the situation we have today. The Pacers play the Magic today, and Brogdon, who played 34 mins in his return game after missing their first match with neck stiffness, put up a whopping 41.5 DK fantasy points in that game as well. Now? He’s just $5.4K on DK. My only worry or concern is that Dipo is going to play today, other than that, I don’t really see how you can over-look this price on Brogdon.
TOP: James Harden ($11,300) – Lordy his price went way up, didn’t it? Its that way for a reason. Harden has now put up 85.3 and 55.3 DK fantasy points in the Rocket’s first two games back. He gets a prime-time match up here with the Blazers in an up-tempo game flow. As mentioned above, he is only carrying a 27% usage rate for the first two games, but do not even start to let that fool you, Harden is getting buckets, and when he isn’t, he is getting to the charity stripe where he has attempted 34 total FTs in his first two games, making 29 of those. He is one of the best offensive minded players in the game, and he knows how to get the most out of himself on that side of the ball. In three games vs POR earlier this season, he averaged 35.9 mpg, 22.3 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 5.3 apg, 1.0 spg, and 1.8 bpg.
MID: CJ McCollum ($8,200) – McCollum continues to get over-looked, and he has gone for 50 and 40 DK fantasy points in his last two. His price has gone up; however, he is still both meeting and exceeding value at this point. Much like RWB, and Harden, CJ also gets a tasty matchup here as well in this fast-tempo game flow against the Rockets, who also don’t believe much in perimeter defense. He is only carrying a modest 21.0% usage rate for POR’s first two games, but he has taken a total of 38 FGAs, with 13 of those being from three-ball land. In three games vs HOU earlier this season, CJ averaged 37.8 mpg, 23.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 4.0 apg, 2.0 spg, and 1.0 bpg. Love getting as much exposure to this game as possible, especially as much of the high-usage plays in that regard.
VALUE: Terrence Ross ($5,300) – Ross has the ability to put up some big fantasy numbers when his shot is falling, as he mainly relies on scoring offense for his fantasy production. However, it is worth noting that Ross is one of the highest-usage rate carrying bench player for the restart so far. He sits with a 21.1% usage rate (maybe some was aided by ORL blowouts), this is good for 5th on the team at the moment. Which I know what you are thinking, just fifth? Yes, but he has the third highest PIE (Player Impact Estimate) on the team also, which means that he impacts the game much more when he is on the floor, and the only two players above him in that category? Vucevic and Aaron Gordon. Ross played 23 minutes in both games so far this season and put up 33 DK fantasy points in the Magic’s last game against the Kings on a 25-point, two rebound, one assist, and one steal stat-line.
TOP: Luka Doncic ($10,700) – If you want a safer range of outcomes, more likely for cash, than the pivot off of Harden is easily Luka today. Luka has now put up back-to-back 64 and 65 fantasy point efforts in the Mav’s first two games since the restart, and he should likely have two triple-doubles to his name as well but missed one in his last game by two rebounds. Luka is the real deal, folks, and he is just getting warmed back up. He gets a lovely matchup today against the Kings who will likely throw Fox or Barnes on him, and they will not be able to contain him. Luka leads the team with a hefty 34% usage rate, and he has played 38 and 42 minutes in both games. Carlile is going to throw him out there and just let him go, so you can feel confident know that as long as the game stays fairly close, he will see the floor, hell, he may even see it if they are ahead by 10+ still. In three games vs the Kings earlier this season, he averaged 33.5 mpg, 28.3 ppg, 11.3 rpg, and 11.0 apg, if that tells you anything.
MID: Jimmy Butler ($7,200) – Really not sure why Butler’s price is as low as it is, just because he is play BOS does not scare me in the single least bit here. Butler has put up back-to-back 39 and 43 DK fantasy point games. One was against TOR and one against DEN, both who generally guard opposing guards fairly well. BOS is also a team that typically plays good defense, but we have also seen them get into some foot-races this season as well. MIA is not exactly a team that gets up and runs, but this price just seems short to me. In two prior games against BOS earlier this season, Butler averaged 36.9 mpg, 28.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 3.0 apg, and 2.5 spg, while also averaging a pretty hefty 29.5 usage rate for those two as well.
VALUE: Gary Trent Jr. ($4,300) – One of the brightest spots off this POR bench so far in the restart is Gary Trent Jr. He has now played 34 and 27 minutes. In those two games he has also amassed 31.3 and 25.3 DK fantasy points as well. He only is carrying a smidge over 14% usage rate, but he has taken a total of 20 FGAs, with 16 of those being the three-pointer, and we know that DK gives the extra 0.5 fantasy points for those as well. He has put up 17 and 21 actual while securing at least one rebound, one assist, along with one block as well. Once again, we want lots of this game, and Trent Jr. provides a very nice value play in that respect.
TOP: Jayson Tatum ($8,300) – If you missed the Tatum bounce-back game in the Celtics last game after he went a meager 3-for-18 from the floor in their first game, I do feel bad for you. I was touting Tatum pretty hard for the bounce-back game against POR, and what better team to get back on track against, right? Today, the matchup won’t be near as easy, however, Tatum is just a really good player at the basketball. The Heat really don’t have a big that will be able to guard him either, as he can pop out to the perimeter and drive the lane. He will likely draw Jae Crowderdefense, and I think this is a matchup that he can exploit. Tatum led the team in usage in their last game with a 32.6% overall usage rate, while he also played 40 minutes. He notched out 58.5 DK fantasy points in that game as well, going for 34 actual, four boards, eight dimes, two swipes, and one swat on the day. In the lone matchup against MIA earlier in the season, Tatum played 34 mins, put up 19 points, five boards, three assists, 1 steal, and three blocks with a hefty 33.8% usage.
MID: Jae Crowder ($4,600) – I know most won’t even look at Jae Crowder, but he has some interesting factors going into this game against BOS. For one, it is a revenge game, as Crowder played for BOS from 2015-2017, before they dished him off pretty unwearyingly, so we can expect a little resentment, maybe? Also, he has now played 29 and 34 minutes in his last two games, and he has gained the starting PF spot for the Heat since the restart began. He has put up 22.3 and 31.5 DK fantasy points in his last two, which both are either hitting 5x value or exceeding it for the price he is listed at today. Really love the price on Crowder, he provides a safe floor, and has a decent ceiling also for the tag. Throw in the revenge narrative and makes Crowder a very interesting play today. He isn’t going to lead the team in scoring, but he should do just enough to make his value worth-while.
VALUE: Ersan Illyasova ($3,600) – It is no secret today that the Nets have literally no one, at least hardly any of their starting five playing. This game should not be even close, MIL should get up pretty quickly, and should allow for some garbage time for the MIL back-ups. We have seen Illy put up some decent numbers when give extended run, and this should be no different today. Not to mention, the PF list gets very thin and frugal when you get down below the $4k range. I do think Ersan is a decent dart today if you are looking for a salary saver, that “should” get extended run, that has decent upside.
TOP: Jusuf Nurkic($8,500) – Honestly, I don’t mind either Nurk or Kristaps at this top spot, and both have really nice matchups today, but Nurk has been crushing since the restart. He has notched out back-to-back 50+ DK fantasy efforts, while playing 32 and 33 mins in both games as well, and not to fail to mention that he leads the team in usage rate for this span as well at 28.0%. He has yet to record a double-double, but has pulled down nine rebounds in both games, while scoring at least 18 or more actual, with an average of five dimes, and two steals as well. Today, he gets PJ Tucker defense, and I hate to say it, but tall, and athletic Centers have been the achillies heel for this Rocket’s team, and this should be no different today with Nurk.
MID: Bam Adebayo ($7,700) – Really digging the price on Bam here today, and quite frankly, I don’t think Theis will be able to hand his athleticism. Bam has recorded a 30, and 41 DK fantasy point outing since the restart began, while carrying the second highest usage rate on the team at 24.1%. He is averaging 30 minutes a game, and we should easily see that once again today. In two games vs BOS earlier this season, Bam averaged near a double-double with 12 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 2.0 apg, 0.5 spg, and 0.5 bpg, while also averaging around 35 mpg. The price is what makes him such an interesting play today, but more than likely if I am paying up this much, I am going to do my best to try to fit Nurk.
VALUE: Robin Lopez ($3,200) – Same situation here as Illyasova for PF. RoLo “should” see an increased role today, as MIL should get out to an early lead against the Nets, who have literally no one. We have seen RoLobeen decently productive in the small amounts of time he has gotten to be on the floor, and we also know that if he gets near 20 minutes on the floor as a result of a big lead, that he could easily smash this value at his price tag. It is risky, and we never know how a basketball game will turn-out, but I think we can all safely say that MIL should smash the Nets today, and we must not forget one of the oldest fades we continue to see even today – BIGs against the Nets has always been a thing!