Welcome back, everyone! For Monday night, there are eight NBA games on tap. DraftKings continues to offer huge tournaments for DFS players, and below are some of my favorite targets at each position.
Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $500K Excellent 8’s [$100K to 1st]
EDITOR’S NOTE: Tonight’s Mavericks-Pelicans game has been postponed because the Mavericks don’t have eight eligible players.
Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks vs. New Orleans Pelicans , $11,300
Just like many other teams in the NBA, the Mavericks are currently going through a COVID-19 crisis. All of Josh Richardson, Dorian Finney-Smith and Jalen Brunson were out Saturday due to the NBA’s health protocols and now, starting power forward Maxi Kleber will reportedly join them on the sidelines for Monday’s matchup with the Pelicans. With Richardson, Finney-Smith, Brunson and Kristaps Porzingis (knee) missing Saturday, Doncic recorded a 57.75 DKFP triple-double in a win over the Magic. All of his rates will remain sky-high on Monday and the 21-year-old superstar should approach 40 minutes in this competitive tilt (DAL -3.5 on DraftKings Sportsbook ). Regardless of this matchup rating poorly (New Orleans is sixth in defensive efficiency), Doncic holds the highest projection of the night and is the player we should be starting our lineups with on Monday.
Other Options: Malcolm Brogdon ($8,300), Kyle Lowry ($8,200)
Tyrese Maxey, Philadelphia 76ers vs. Atlanta Hawks, $4,700
With only seven players available for the Sixers on Saturday, Maxey was brilliant as their starting point guard, erupting for 61.25 DKFP vs. the Nuggets. The rookie obtained a 31.1% usage rate and played a whopping 44 minutes in the loss. Joel Embiid (probable, back) is expected to return Monday vs. the Hawks, but the Sixers will still only have eight healthy players at their disposal. Most notably, Ben Simmons (knee) will be missing and Maxey should continue to start at the point and handle a large role.
Naturally, Embiid will be the top offensive threat, but Maxey is by far Philadelphia’s next best option after the star center. When Simmons, Seth Curry (out, health protocols), Tobias Harris (out, health protocols) and Shake Milton (out, health protocols) have been off the floor, Maxey has averaged a 29.7% usage rate and 1.23 DKFP per minute. The Hawks are always a plus matchup for point guards (17th in defensive efficiency) and Maxey is a near must-play for this eight-game slate.
Other Options: Ish Smith ($4,400), De’Anthony Melton ($3,800)
Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards vs. Phoenix Suns, $9,900
Beal missed Saturday’s contest against the Heat due to possible exposure to COVID-19, but the stud shooting guard has been cleared and will return to action Monday when the Wizards host the Suns. Before the health scare, Beal was on fire, scoring 65.3 DKFP per game with an absurd 43.7% usage rate in his two previous starts. Now, just when you thought his workload couldn’t grow any further, usage hog Russell Westbrook (quad) and starting center Thomas Bryant (knee) will both be out for Washington.
When the former MVP and Bryant have been off the court this season, Beal’s usage rate has increased 6.4% and his assist percentage has jumped 7.7%, lifting him to a tremendous 1.8 DKFP per minute. The Suns have been a stout defensive group (eighth in efficiency), but there is no matchup in the league that should stop us from rostering Beal with this type of opportunity.
Other Options: Devin Booker ($7,900)
Trey Burke, Dallas Mavericks vs. New Orleans Pelicans, $4,500 He didn’t get the start, but Burke was outstanding off the bench for the shorthanded Mavs on Saturday, posting 40 DKFP in 21 minutes of work. The Michigan product received a 30.7% usage rate and his playing time should be higher tonight with Dallas reportedly down another man in Kleber. Burke is always a player that we need to consider when he is projected for a sizable workload. Including his showing this past Saturday, the 28-year-old is generating 25.6 DKFP per game in his past 10 with at least 20 minutes of action. After costing a bare minimum of $3,000 on Saturday, Burke’s price has quickly been adjusted, but he remains underpriced at $4,500.
Other Options: Kevin Huerter ($5,500), Damyean Dotson ($4,900, if Collin Sexton is out), Isaiah Joe ($4,100)
Brandon Ingram, New Orleans Pelicans vs. Dallas Mavericks, $8,600 Ingram has been very consistent as of late, contributing 46.9 DKFP per game over his past four. He has topped 40 DKFP in six of nine contests in 2020-21 and went over 40 DKFP in three of four matchups with the Mavs last season. Overall, this understaffed Dallas squad should be a mess defensively and paying up at small forward shouldn’t be a popular strategy on Monday. Rostering Ingram should naturally make your lineup contrarian and he is an appealing target if looking to game stack this Pelicans vs. Mavs contest.
Tim Hardaway Jr. ($6,700)
Danny Green, Philadelphia 76ers vs. Atlanta Hawks, $4,700
Green was one of the seven players who suited up for the Sixers on Saturday, resulting in a season-high 36 minutes. He chipped in with 27.75 DKFP and the veteran will without a doubt see over 30 minutes again on Monday, with the Sixers only adding Embiid to their active list.
Since coming over from the defending champion Lakers, Green has been effective when given substantial playing time in Philadelphia, with the wing providing 27.1 DKFP per game in the three contests he has eclipsed 30 minutes this season. The 33-year-old isn’t the most exciting play, but he is a safe cash-game target that should exceed five-times value.
Other Options: Cam Reddish ($5,100), Cameron Johnson ($4,200)
Domantas Sabonis, Indiana Pacers vs. Sacramento Kings, $9,300
Sabonis has been one of the most reliable assets in fantasy basketball this season. He has produced a double-double in every one of his nine starts, helping him to a 49.4 DKFP average for the season. The 24-year-old Lithuanian is fresh off a season-best 61.5 DKFP against a tough Suns defense on Saturday and he will now head to Sacramento to compete in a game with an O/U total of 227.5 points on DraftKings Sportsbook.
This is the largest game total Sabonis has suited up for this year and the steady big man is supplying 47.9 DKFP per game in his past four games with totals above 220 points. The Kings are giving up the second-most points in the paint per game and this is a perfect spot for Sabonis to find his ceiling.
Other Options: Julius Randle ($9,600), Pascal Siakam ($8,100)
James Johnson, Dallas Mavericks vs. New Orleans Pelicans, $4,100 The versatile Johnson stepped up with many of his front-court mates out Saturday, tallying 28.25 DKFP across 26 minutes off the bench. Now, with Kleber reportedly positive for COVID-19, Johnson is the top candidate to take his place as the Mavs’ starting power forward on Monday. Nothing is a guarantee when it comes to predicting Dallas’ starting lineup under head coach Rick Carlisle, but even if Johnson remains a reserve, the veteran should log over 25 minutes this evening. Over the past two seasons, the 33-year-old is averaging 28.5 DKFP per game when given at least 20 minutes and this New Orleans defense he is facing is most susceptible to power forwards. So far this season, they have given up the fourth-most DKFP per game to the position and Johnson is another strong value play that we can confidently attack from Dallas. Now, Porzingis has been upgraded to questionable ahead of Monday night and if he were to be active, Johnson would become a more volatile option in all formats.
Other Options: P.J. Washington ($6,400), Marvin Bagley ($5,700, if Richaun Holmes is out), Wes Iwundu ($3,400)
Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers vs. Atlanta Hawks, $9,800
Assuming he is active and has no limitations due to the back injury, Embiid should dominate the Hawks on Monday night. We can safely project a usage rate north of 30% for the center and his playing time should fall between 35-40 minutes with his team so depleted. The 26-year-old’s usage has cracked 30% three times already this season and Embiid is producing 59.2 DKFP per game with this type of role.
Furthermore, he absolutely destroyed the Hawks last season, averaging 64.25 DKFP per game in three meetings against the club. With his team in shambles, Embiid is the undisputed top play at center this evening.
Other Options: Andre Drummond ($9,200), Nikola Vucevic ($8,900)
Moritz Wagner, Washington Wizards vs. Phoenix Suns, $3,600
Veteran Robin Lopez will most likely start in place of the injured Bryant, but it is Wagner who has the greater upside with the center done for the season. Bryant went down two minutes into Saturday’s tilt vs. the Heat, and after he exited, Wagner scored 26.25 DKFP across 20 minutes, while Lopez produced a modest 13.75 DKFP in 21 minutes.
A split timeshare should continue tonight, but Wagner has the clear edge in production, scoring 1.1 DKFP per minute this season vs. only 0.8 for Lopez. In his past 10 outings with 20 minutes or more, Wagner is amassing 23.3 DKFP per game and he is a viable punt play for both cash games and GPPs at only $3,600.
Other Options: Chris Boucher ($6,000), Hassan Whiteside ($4,200, if Richaun Holmes is out), JaVale McGee ($3,800)
Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA $500K Excellent 8’s [$100K to 1st]
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is Hunta512) 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.