Friday features the final two-game NBA slate of the year. The action is highlighted by Game 7 between the Raptors and Celtics at 9:00 p.m. ET, and the winner will advance to take on the Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals.
Prior to that, the Clippers will take on the Nuggets at 6:30 p.m. ET, and they will look to wrap up their series in five games. Los Angeles dropped Game 2 of this series, but they’ve won the past two contests to grab a commanding 3-1 series lead.
Let’s take a look at some of the top studs and values at each position on DraftKings.
Kyle Lowry, TOR vs. BOS, $8,600– The Raptors and Celtics are in a very interesting spot today. It’s a Game 7 – which have historically been low-scoring affairs to begin with – and most of the starters played around 55 minutes in Game 6. Don’t be surprised if these players don’t have a lot of legs left, which is reflected in the 204.5 total on DraftKings Sportsbook.
On the other hand, it’s hard to ignore the sheer volume of minutes that some of these players will get. Lowry has a chance to play 45+ minutes, and he’s thrived in that situation recently. He’s logged at least 43.8 minutes in three of his past four games, and he’s scored at least 54.0 DKFP in each of those contests.
Other Options – Kemba Walker ($7,700)
Patrick Beverley, LAC vs. DEN, $3,800 – I will continue to ride with Beverley at such a reduced salary. He’s played limited minutes recently, but that still hasn’t stopped him from providing decent fantasy value. Beverley has averaged 0.88 DKFP per minute this season, so a low minute count isn’t as detrimental for him as some of the other players in this price range. Beverley should also start to see more playing time as he gets further removed from his injury, so he won’t be this cheap for much longer.
Other Options – Lou Williams ($5,800), Brad Wanamaker ($3,300)
Paul George, LAC vs. DEN, $8,300 – The Clippers are my favorite team to target today. Even though their starters won’t see as much playing time as guys for the Celtics and Raptors, they should be much more productive when on the court. The Clippers’ implied team total of 112.25 points is nine points higher than the Celtics’ mark (103.25) and 11.5 points higher than the Raptors’ (100.75).
George has also snapped out of the funk that plagued him early during the playoffs. He scored just 19.25 DKFP in his last contest, but that was due more to a lack of minutes and a monster night from Kawhi Leonard than poor play from George. He should bounce back in Game 5.
Other Options – Jaylen Brown ($8,000), Fred VanVleet ($7,900)
Norman Powell, TOR @ BOS, $4,400 – NBA twitter went into a tizzy when Powell got the Raptors’ final shot in overtime. He didn’t make it – and it was a really bad shot selection as well – but Powell justified his coaches’ faith in him during the second overtime. He ultimately finished with 34.0 DKFP in Game 6 and should be looking at another sizable role in Game 7. Powell played “just” 38.3 minutes in his last game, so he should be a bit fresher than some of the other key players.
Other Options – Marcus Smart ($6,800), Lou Williams ($5,800)
Kawhi Leonard, LAC vs. DEN, $10,400 – Leonard was struggling in this series vs. the Nuggets, but he snapped out of that in a big way in Game 4. He racked up 30 points, 11 rebounds, nine assists, four steals, and two blocks, ultimately finishing with 71.25 DKFP. Leonard is one of the best playoff performers in the league – if not the best – and that game was a nice reminder of what he is capable of.
He didn’t even shoot particularly well in that contest, making just 10-22 shots from the field, so there’s no reason he can’t repeat that performance today.
Other Options – None
Michael Porter Jr., DEN @ LAC, $5,200 – Porter Jr. made headlines after Game 4 when he criticized the team for not getting him enough touches. That’s not a great way to endear yourself to your teammates, but he might have a point. MPJ was brilliant in the first half of Game 4, scoring 15 points on 5-6 shooting, but he got just two shot attempts in the second half. He’s a prodigious scorer – he’s averaged 1.17 DKFP this season – so he has nice upside at his salary if the Nuggets get him more touches in this contest. He’s also a terrible defender, so there’s no point in having him on the court if he’s not going to score.
Other Options – OG Anunoby ($5,900), Marcus Morris ($4,800)
Pascal Siakam, TOR @ BOS, $7,800 – Is it time to give up on Siakam? Maybe, but I just can’t do it yet. His performance in Game 6 certainly wasn’t encouraging – he scored 33.5 DKFP over a whopping 54.2 minutes – but we have a long sample size of Siakam providing excellent fantasy value when on the court. He’s averaged 1.15 DKFP per minute this season, so I’m going to continue to try to buy low on him.
Other Options – Jayson Tatum ($9,500)
Jerami Grant, DEN @ LAC, $4,900 – Grant has been a massive disappointment over his past two games, scoring just 15.25 and 7.0 DKFP. That said, he’s still playing heavy minutes, and Grant has averaged 0.80 DKFP over the course of the year. He simply hasn’t been able to buy a bucket in those games, and shooting numbers vary wildly from game-to-game. I’m expecting some progression from Grant in today’s contest.
Other Options – Daniel Theis ($5,600)
Nikola Jokic, DEN @ LAC, $10,000 – Jokic is the only real stud option to consider at the center position today, and he’s been the Nuggets’ offensive focal point during this series vs. the Clippers. He’s responded with at least 51.75 DKFP in two of his past three games, including at least 60.0 DKFP in two of those contests. Jokic is capable of recording fantasy points in a variety of ways, so he’s increased aggressiveness as a scorer gives him even more upside than usual.
Other Options – None
Ivica Zubac, LAC vs. DEN, $5,000 – The Clippers funneled a few additional minutes to Zubac in their last game to try and slow down Jokic. He finished with 29.7 minutes, which was his top mark of the series. Zubac responded with 25.75 DKFP, which is not surprising given his average of 1.13 DKFP per minute this season.
Other Options – Serge Ibaka ($5,400), Montrezl Harrell ($4,300)
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