Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings at each position for Wednesday’s NBA slate, along with some strategy unique to this slate.
Worth Paying Up For: Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks at Charlotte Hornets ($10,800)
After a slow start to the season, Luka’s started to flash that upside we got used to last season, with a pair of 70-plus DKFP games since we turned the calendars. He gets a favorable matchup against the Hornets, and the Mavs will be down at least three key rotation pieces due to COVID-19.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Nickeil Alexander-Walker, New Orleans Pelicans at Los Angeles Clippers ($3,100)
Lonzo Ball (knee) is already confirmed out of this one, and Eric Bledsoe (eye) remains questionable. Even if it’s just Ball that’s out, NAW would see some extended run, but if Bledsoe does wind up sidelined, we get an elite play here. NAW’s played 19 or more minutes three times this season, averaging about 23 DKFP in those spots.
Worth Paying Up For: CJ McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers at Sacramento Kings ($8,600)
SG is thin once again, so while value is probably the best route, there are pay up spots to consider. CJ has been running hot lately, scoring 50-plus DKFP in back-to-back contests. One of those big games was in just 29 minutes against the Kings, so we’ll see if he can repeat some of that production this time around. Damian Lillard (knee) is a little banged up, so perhaps the team will lean more on McCollum in the short-term.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Bruce Brown, Brooklyn Nets at New York Knicks ($3,300)
Brown’s continued to be in the starting lineup for the Nets, and while he’s had some up and down performances, he seems to have broken out on Tuesday against Denver. Brown stuffed the stat sheet for 33 DKFP in 26 minutes, and has a chance to run it back in a good matchup at a cheap salary.
Worth Paying Up For: LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers at Oklahoma City Thunder ($9,600)
Kind of like SG, this should be a value spot, but we can always play it safe with LeBron. LBJ has finished with fewer than 50 DKFP in three straight, but his salary is starting to come down, so he’ll be a good play when he has that bounce-back game. With Anthony Davis (toe) questionable, there’s some extra upside to be unlocked here if AD winds up out.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Cam Johnson, Phoenix Suns at Atlanta Hawks ($4,100)
Editor’s note: Tonight’s game between the Hawks and Suns has been postponed.
I wrote up Johnson on Monday against the Wizards, when he, and the entire Suns’ roster, seemed to bust in a near perfect matchup. Let’s write that one off and go back to the same spot with a discounted price. Johnson and the Suns should be able to bounce-back against the Hawks, and the shooter carries 25-30 DKFP upside in this spot.
Worth Paying Up For: Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets at New York Knicks ($9,400)
KD’s been tremendous since returning from health protocols, scoring 35 per game with a double-double in both contests — averaging over 60 DKFP. He fully intends to play in this back-to-back with no travel involved, and should light up this Knicks defense. For as long as Kyrie Irving wants to take personal time, KD’s ceiling is higher.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Carmelo Anthony, Portland Trail Blazers at Sacramento Kings ($4,200)
‘Melo had a throwback game on Monday against the Raptors, finishing with a 23-5-3 line, shooting 5-of-10 from downtown with two steals and two blocks (43.75 DKFP). It’s unlikely we see him put together another big game, or play 35 minutes again. But he does bring a safe floor of around 20 DKFP, and offers nice upside in a good matchup against Sacramento.
Worth Paying Up For: Julius Randle, New York Knicks vs. Brooklyn Nets ($9,100)
Randle’s coming off his first real dud of the season, partially due to the blowout loss to the Hornets. His salary comes down $500 for a matchup against the Nets, who give up points to bigs. Randle’s been 6.2-DKFP better in home games, averaging 51.3 DKFP, and should be in position to get back to the big numbers he’d been putting up on a nightly basis.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Boban Marjanovic, Dallas Mavericks at Charlotte Hornets ($3,000)
The lack of bodies for the Mavs creates a lot of value here, particularly at center. Boban should get minutes, and we know Boban is the GOAT in terms of efficiency. No need to overthink things considering he’s priced at the minimum. Willie Cauley-Stein ($4,100) is another reasonable option.
Overall Lineup Strategy
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The injuries below really outline this slate. The Mavs will be the team with the most COVID issues, but the New Orleans backcourt is a sneaky place to potentially get some value.
Key Injuries to Monitor
Mavericks: Thinnest team on the slate — Josh Richardson, Dorian Finney-Smith, Maxi Kleber, Dwight Powell and Jalen Brunson are all out. Kristaps Porzingis is expect to make his season debut, though.
Lakers: Anthony Davis is questionable with a toe injury — LeBron expected to play.
Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard is probable with an ankle, and Jusuf Nurkic is questionable with a quad.
Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns is expected to play in his second game back since injuring his wrist — he scored 54 DKFP in 37 minutes in his return.
Pelicans: Lonzo Ball is already out with a knee injury, and if Eric Bledsoe’s eye injury keeps him out, the Pelicans’ backcourt would have a lot of value.
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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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