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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA Snake DFS Strategy for January 20

Alex Hunter breaks down Wednesday’s DraftKings NBA Snake contest, which locks at 7:00 p.m. ET.

Welcome back, everybody. Tonight, barring any postponements, we should see ten action-packed NBA games, and if you haven’t by now, you need to check out DraftKings’ new Snake Draft format!

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!

EDITORS NOTE: TONIGHT’S MATCHUP BETWEEN THE GRIZZLIES AND TRAIL BLAZERS HAS BEEN POSTPONED DUE TO CONTACT TRACING.


Favorable Early Round Targets

Damian Lillard, G, Portland Trail Blazers

NBA Snake Rank: 4

CJ McCollum (foot) and Jusuf Nurkic (wrist) are both out indefinitely, leaving Lillard in an enormous role for the Blazers. When these two starters have been off the floor the past two seasons, the All-Star point guard has seen a 33.8% usage rate and supplied 1.4 DKFP per minute. This will be the 5th time that Lillard has played a full game without them over the last two years and he is averaging a ridiculous 62.1 DKFP per game with them out of the lineup.

He will be going against a Grizzlies defense that is allowing the 3rd least DKFP per game to opposing point guards, but quite honestly, this is irrelevant for Lillard tonight. There is no matchup in the NBA that would stop me from rostering the superstar with this type of workload and he is a lock for over 50 DKFP with a ceiling above 70.

EDITORS NOTE: TONIGHT’S MATCHUP BETWEEN THE GRIZZLIES AND TRAIL BLAZERS HAS BEEN POSTPONED DUE TO CONTACT TRACING.

Domantas Sabonis, F/C, Indiana Pacers

NBA Snake Rank: 7

Sabonis is in a perfect situation on Wednesday. After a four-game road trip out west, the stud forward will be back at home to face a Mavs defense that is yielding the 7th most DKFP per game to opposing centers this season. More importantly, Caris LeVert (kidney), who the Pacers just acquired in return for Victor Oladipo, will not make his team debut on Wednesday, while T.J. Warren (foot) will continue to be out and Myles Turner (questionable, hand) may miss his second straight game.

Even if we don’t include Turner, Sabonis has seen his usage rate jump 2.8 percentage points sans Warren and Oladipo in 2020-21. He is averaging 51.5 DKFP per game in his last five and Sabonis should feast on the Mavericks this evening.

Early Round Player to Avoid

Kevin Huerter, G, Atlanta Hawks

NBA Snake Rank: 10

The pre-draft rankings on DraftKings are usually very sharp every night, but Huerter at #10 is a clear error by the system. Don’t get me wrong, the third-year wing out of Maryland played very well in his last game (45 DKFP vs. the Wolves) and the Hawks are a little banged up right now, but this is an absurd asking price for a player who is only scoring 25.6 DKFP per game this season. Every other player in the top-20 is producing at least 36 DKFP per game so far in 2020-21, and his showing against the Wolves on Monday is only the third time that Huerter has cracked 30 DKFP in 13 contests this year.

Make no mistake, Huerter would be an appealing late round target tonight, but wasting one of your first few picks on the 22-year-old would simply be foolish.

Late Round Fliers

Enes Kanter, F/C, Portland Trail Blazers

NBA Snake Rank: 61

With Jonas Valancuinas (health protocols) away from the team, Kanter should bully the Grizzlies tonight. In these past two as the Blazers’ starting center in place of the injured Nurkic, Kanter has generated 38.4 DKFP in 28 minutes per game. The former Celtic is producing 1.3 DKFP per minute in 2020-21 and Memphis is very under sized at center with Valancuinas sidelined. On Monday, with the big man absent, the Grizzlies opted to start rookie Xavier Tilman at center, who is only 6’8” tall.

Kanter has reached the DraftKings double-double bonus in four of the six games he has exceeded 20 minutes this year and I absolutely expect him to achieve this feat in this beautiful matchup.

Eric Gordon, G, Houston Rockets

NBA Snake Rank: 83

With James Harden out of town and John Wall (knee) sidelined, Gordon contributed 30.5 DKFP in a season-high 34 minutes of work Monday vs. the Bulls. With Wall already ruled out, Gordon will be in the same exact situation tonight, when the Rockets host the Suns. After a promising start, this Phoenix defense has slipped to 16th in efficiency and we can safely project Gordon for 30-35 minutes as Houston’s starting shooting guard.

When Wall and Harden have been off the court, Gordon has provided 1.1 DKFP per minute and he is averaging 31.25 DKFP per game when given 30 minutes or more this season. At 83rd on the draft board, Gordon is very undervalued for his safety with the expanded role.

Draymond Green, F/C, Golden State Warriors

NBA Snake Rank: 86

To start the year, it looked like Green may have lost a step, but he has started to regain his form as of late, topping 30 DKFP in three of his last four. During this four-game stretch, the savvy veteran has been the Warriors’ top playmaker, averaging nine assists per game, resulting in a team-high 42.9% assist percentage.

His success should continue tonight in an ideal game setting vs. the Spurs. Via DraftKings Sportsbook, this tilt presents an O/U game total of 226.5 points and a tight spread of only 1.5 points in favor of Golden State. San Antonio has had issues containing power forwards this season, surrendering the 6th most DKFP per game to the position and Green is amassing 35.6 DKFP per game in his last five matchups with the club.

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


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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.