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Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Lineup Strategy for December 22

Julian Edlow gives his top lineup advice at each position for Tuesday’s fantasy basketball slate on DraftKings, which starts at 7:00 p.m. ET.

After a historically short offseason, the NBA is already back in action after less than three months off. We’ll get our feet wet with a couple of games on Tuesday night before the rest of the league takes the floor on Wednesday. Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings on this two-game slate.

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Point Guard

Worth Paying Up For: Stephen Curry, GSW at BKN ($9,300)

It’s been a while since we’ve seen a healthy Steph, and it looks like that’s what we’re getting to begin this season. With Klay and Dray both off the floor, this will be Curry’s team to run. The Warriors have admitted they don’t want to play the former MVP more than 34 minutes with his age getting up there, but they should be efficient minutes with high usage. With a total over 230 on DraftKings Sportsbook in this one, we should see plenty of up and down.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Lou Williams, LAC at LAL ($5,400)

Lou Will is at a modest price, and may have to carry a bit more of the scoring load off the bench this season. His partner in crime off the bench in Montrezl Harrell is now in the other locker room in Los Angeles, and Marcus Morris (knee) is beginning the season on the sidelines. There should be more scoring chances for Lou off the bench early on this season.

Lineup Strategy

There’s not much value on this slate at PG, but the studs make it worth it. You can roster just Curry, or game stack the PG position by rostering Kyrie Irving ($8,500). While I chose to feature Curry, Kyrie is my second-ranked guard on the full slate. So I’ll probably roster those two and just punt on SG.


Shooting Guard

Worth Paying Up For: Paul George, LAC at LAL ($7,800)

It was a tough playoff run for PG, and I think that narrative has a lot of us down on him to start the season. It’s tough to roster him if you do go to the Steph/Kyrie stack, but George is a nice way to save some salary in tournaments. You don’t want to read too much into preseason, but after signing a lucrative extension, George didn’t have the best preseason. Obviously, the Lakers present a difficult task on both ends of the floor in this one.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Joe Harris, BKN vs. GSW ($4,800)

We need to play somebody at SG, and Harris pops as a solid value. He looked solid out there in 23 minutes against the Celtics in the final preseason game, scoring 14 points to go with five rebounds. He should see plenty of minutes as a 3-and-D option on this reloaded Nets squad, and proved to be a pretty solid rebounder at the end of last season.

Lineup Strategy

Kawhi Leonard ($9,100) is another option to pay up even more than George, but SG is a tough position on this slate. If you have some extra room to afford more than Harris, Lou Williams can slot in a SG for $600 more.


Small Forward

Worth Paying Up For: LeBron James, LAL vs. LAC ($9,600)

I’ll admit, I’m a little worried about some type of bubble hangover for these guys that were playing less than a few months ago. Kawhi got a little more time off, and should come into this season with more of a chip on his shoulder, so I understand if you want to pivot off ‘Bron. But LBJ put together a solid preseason in limited minutes, and appears ready to help the defending champs get off to a quick start.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Nicolas Batum, LAC at LAL ($4,100)

Batum quietly landed with the Clips this offseason, and actually should play a solid role to start the season. Batum started in the preseason in place of Morris, so I’d expect that to continue in the season opener. Batum doesn’t offer much of a ceiling, but a starter that can offer some variety on the stat sheet at this price is valuable when we only have two games.

Lineup Strategy

Kelly Oubre ($6,700) is an interesting tournament consideration if you want to split the difference between the studs and the values. He latched on late with the Warriors after Klay went down for the season and looked to be a good fit during preseason.


Power Forward

Worth Paying Up For: Kevin Durant, BKN vs. GSW ($9,800)

KD would probably be my favorite play at SF if he were still eligible there, but now he shifts over to a position with some more options. Durant looked excellent in the preseason finale against the Celtics, dropping a 25-6-2 line with three blocks. This should be a paced up matchup against his former team, and Golden State will be missing its best frontcourt defender.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Eric Paschall, GSW at BKN ($3,800)

Speaking of no Draymond, that should mean a much larger role for Paschall, who we saw thrive in these spots last season. Paschall didn’t play much in the preseason due to a knee issue, but will be relied on a lot to fill Green’s role for as long as he’s out. This is likely the top value on the slate, and ownership should reflect it.

Lineup Strategy

PF is actually pretty loaded, especially considering both center plays below are PF eligible. I’d use the flexibility here to figure out the best way to fit your must-plays at other positions. With Batum also PF eligible, I think we’ll see plenty of four-PF lineups.


Center

Worth Paying Up For: Anthony Davis, LAL vs. LAC ($10,000)

AD is pretty much the only center stud to choose from, but a good one. He could’ve been better in four matchups against the Clippers last season, averaging 47 DKFP, but there also isn’t a much higher ceiling play to select from on this slate. Davis appears to be in mid-season form, dropping 35 in preseason against the Suns on 11-of-16 shooting, including 6-for-7 from downtown.

Best Bang For Your Buck: Montrezl Harrell LAL vs. LAC ($5,300)

Harrell will come off the bench for his new team, and already got the chance to face his old team in preseason. While he didn’t shoot well, he still played 31 minutes and scored 13 points and 12 boards in a low scoring game. Harrell was playing much fewer minutes in the playoffs during his final games with the Clips, so the bump in salary should prove to be worth it.

Lineup Strategy

Kevon Looney ($5,200) should also play more with Green out, and has been very efficient in limited preseason minutes. Marquese Chriss ($4,000) is another value consideration.


Injury Report

OUT

Draymond Green (foot)

Marcus Morris (knee)

QUESTIONABLE

None

DOUBTFUL

None

PROBABLE

None

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jedlow) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.


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