clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA Snake DFS Strategy for December 28

Kenny Ducey breaks down Monday’s DraftKings NBA Snake contest, which locks at 7:30 p.m. ET.

LA Clippers v Denver Nuggets Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

Happy Monday, everybody! We’ve got the perfect cure for your early-week blues — a five-game NBA slate. DraftKings has released a new fantasy format for DFS players to attack — Snake Drafts are now available in the DraftKings lobby for both NBA and NFL.

If you’ve ever played season-long fantasy before – either for NBA or any other sport – you’re likely familiar with how a Snake Draft works. In short, for these contests, once the allotted number of entries are filled in a contest, the draft will begin one minute later. The entrants are assigned a random draft order and will commence in that order. The player with the first pick gets dibs on anyone while the player with the last pick will get a double pick, as it’ll end the first round and thus begin the second.

Roster requirements for lineups: G – 2, F/C – 2, Util – 2

Visit the DraftKings NBA lobby to view all the available NBA Snake contests!


Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball Classic Millionaire lineups here: NBA $700K Holiday Shootaround [$150K to 1st]


Favorable Early Round Targets:

Nikola Jokic, F/C, Denver Nuggets
Snake Classic Rank: 5th

The most favorable matchup of the night could go to Jokic, who gets to face the Rockets and Christian Wood, who allowed 118 points per 100 possessions while he was on the floor against Portland on Saturday. Wood, though talented, is a slimmer player who has played power forward over his five-year career and doesn’t have the frame to guard Jokic in this one. He allowed Jusuf Nurkic to nearly bully himself to a triple-double over the weekend and in the same game backup Enes Kanter fell a rebound shy of a double-double off the bench. A triple-double should be well within Jokic’s reach here, making him an exquisite option tonight if you’re picking toward the bottom of the first round.

Kyrie Irving, G, Brooklyn Nets
Snake Classic Rank: 7th

With Kevin Durant resting here due to the Nets playing a back-to-back and Spencer Dinwiddie lost to a partially torn ACL, the Nets don’t really have many weapons on offense aside from Irving. His usage rate was already at a decent 28% with Durant in the lineup, and that should rise significantly here against the Grizzlies. Irving will be in the spotlight dueling youngster Ja Morant, and I think he could score 50 in this one. Seeing Kyrie down at No. 7 in the rankings after going for 61 DKFP just a few days ago, in a game he’ll have all of the ball, gets me excited. This is potentially fantastic value in the second round.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Irving (rest) will not play in tonight’s game vs. the Grizzlies.


Early Round Player to Avoid:

Damian Lillard, G, Portland Trail Blazers
Snake Classic Rank: 2nd

I’m not sure if you remember this summer’s postseason series between L.A. and Portland, but Lillard really struggled to score against the defense of Alex Caruso and the rest of the Lakers. Considering Lillard hasn’t shot 40% yet from the field and is just 6-20 from 3-point range, I’m not overly excited at the thought of playing him against a defense that plays defense on the perimeter — the Lakers ranked third in adjusted defensive rating last season. There are so many exciting options in the top seven of the snake draft rankings, I’m passing on Dame here.


Late Round Fliers:

Clint Capela, F/C, Atlanta Hawks
Snake Classic Rank: 32nd

If you choose to go with some of the many exciting guard options early, Capela could be a great value add to your lineup at center. He’s down this low because he’s making his season debut after resting due to a sore Achilles. He was a monster on the glass last year, averaging a career-high 13.8 rebounds to go along with nearly 14 points per game, and he will be happy to see Mason Plumlee playing center tonight for the opposing Pistons. The two centers to face Plumlee this year have had a very easy go of it — Andre Drummond just went for 64 DKFP on Saturday, while Karl-Anthony Towns had 51 DKFP in just 30 minutes in Minnesota’s season-opener versus Detroit last week. I like Capela to go for potentially 16 rebounds and 20 points in this fantastic matchup, making him a super value here.

Jeff Green, F, Brooklyn Nets
Snake Classic Rank: 88th

Originally listed as questionable, Green should start and see plenty of minutes in place of the resting Kevin Durant. Considering how poorly Taurean Prince has shot, I think Steve Nash will give the nod to the veteran here and let him play upward of 30 minutes. Green consistently outperformed his projections last season when he saw significant minutes, posting around 20-30 DKFP when he saw over 20 minutes on the floor. He can still play, and I think he will relish the opportunity to beat one of his former teams.

Jerami Grant, F/C, Detroit Pistons
Snake Classic Rank: 31st

Speaking of those Pistons, Grant should be starting in place of a resting Blake Griffin, and things will only get better for the red-hot forward. Grant scored 28 points and played 43 minutes in Cleveland’s double-overtime loss to the Cavaliers a couple of days ago and should see a full complement of minutes here as the Pistons try to slow down a solid Hawks frontcourt. Grant’s shooting has been exciting so far after a down year last season, and there is a chance people aren’t ready to believe in him in the fifth round. If he slips, he makes for a great pick in the sixth.

Visit the DraftKings NBA lobby to view all the available NBA Snake contests!

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball Classic Millionaire lineups here: NBA $700K Holiday Shootaround [$150K to 1st].


Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.


If you or someone you know has a gambling problem, crisis counseling and referral services can be accessed by calling 1-800-GAMBLER (1-800-426-2537) (IL). Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER (NJ/WV/PA), 1-800-9-WITH-IT (IN), 1-800-522-4700 (NH/CO), 1-800-BETS OFF (IA) or TN REDLINE: 800-889-9789. 21+ (18+ NH). NJ/PA/WV/NH/IN/NH/IA/CO/IL/TN only. Eligibility restrictions apply. See draftkings.com/sportsbook for full terms and conditions.


I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jetsfan196) 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.