clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Best lineup strategy for Knicks-Trail Blazers NBA Showdown

With all the focus on Carmelo Anthony, does that open things up for the Blazers’ dynamic duo? We break down the top options for DraftKings Showdown.

Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum dribbles around Oklahoma City Thunder forward Abdel Nader during the first quarter at the Moda Center. Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

This would be a normal Tuesday night Showdown contest on DraftKings, but well, we’ve got a narrative people! Carmelo Anthony and the Trail Blazers will welcome in the New York Knicks. If you’re familiar with basketball, you know Melo played some of the best years of his NBA career in New York. Melo should be motivated to stick it to his former franchise, but of course, that’s purely speculative and has no rational backing. But don’t worry, I’ll put narrative bias aside in my analysis for tonight’s Showdown contest, breaking down lineup construction for DFS.

Captain’s Picks

I think the clear choice at Captain is Carme — just kidding. Damian Lillard ($17,100) is the highest-priced option and I don’t think that should shy you off him. Lillard has by far the highest ceiling of any player in the contest and is in a great spot to keep up his scoring binge. Dame has at least 24 points in three straight, and if he can find his outside shot, he could explode. The Knicks allow opponents to shoot 38.8% from downtown this season.

I also like Hassan Whiteside ($15,900) as a high-priced Captain, but if you’re looking for leverage and to save some salary, there are a few other candidates. Kent Bazemore ($9,900) will start again for Rodney Hood (Achilles) and should see plenty of minutes again. He played 36 minutes in place of Hood on Sunday vs. the Thunder and we know the Knicks can’t defend the 3-point line. The Blazers struggle to defend PFs, so maybe Marcus Morris ($10,800) is worth a look?

Flex Options

I think if you’re going the route of Dame in the Captain’s slot, that fitting in CJ McCollum ($9,600) is a good idea. Again, the Knicks can’t defend the 3 and CJ has a high scoring ceiling like Dame. Now that Mike Miller is in place as interim coach for the Knicks, we sort of a got a sense of his rotation. Julius Randle ($9,200), RJ Barrett ($7,800) and Mitchell Robinson ($8,400) should see the most minutes. Randle will be the focal point of the offense and Portland struggles with athletic bigs like Randle. As far as value, Anfernee Simons ($4,800) is cheap and should see minutes at wing with no Hood. I also don’t mind Taj Gibson ($3,600) much as a salary saver.