Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings at each position for Friday’s main NBA slate, along with some strategy unique to this slate.
Worth Paying Up For: Victor Oladipo, Houston Rockets at Detroit Pistons ($8,000)
John Wall remains out with a knee injury, which means ‘Dipo is Houston’s starting PG yet again. This is the role he’s played in his first two games with his new team, and it’s been tremendous for his fantasy value. Oladipo has the ball in his hands, averaging 7.5 assists so far as a Rocket, but also got up 45 shots in his first two games. Averaging just shy of 50 DKFP, the price here still isn’t adjusted. We’ll fade him when Wall returns.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Kemba Walker, Boston Celtics at Philadelphia 76ers ($6,500)
Kemba isn’t cheap by any means, but he’s playing well, has a matchup he dominates, and is seeing his role increase. Walker was playing on a 20-minute restriction in his first two games, and while he did increase to 22 on Wednesday, he went for 31.5 DKFP in Philly. He played very well against the 76ers last season, and now we see his restriction jump to about 28 minutes. With a likely range of 25-30 minutes in this game, we start to see potential 35-40 DKFP upside. Jayson Tatum remains out, so Walker’s scoring is much needed for Boston.
Worth Paying Up For: James Harden, Brooklyn Nets at Cleveland Cavaliers ($10,800)
Editor’s note: Nets SF/PF Kevin Durant (Achilles injury recovery) is out tonight.
Kevin Durant is questionable, so this is a play more for if KD sits. SG doesn’t have much I’m looking to spend up on, although you can use Oladipo here too. It’ll be a value position for me, unless the Nets are down to two stars. Harden has at least 12 assists in each game with the Nets so far, and will continue to play on the ball. But in a career-high 50 minutes on Wednesday, Harden only took 14 shots. That obviously won’t be the case if Durant sits, leaving a lot more scoring upside here.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Alec Burks, New York Knicks at Sacramento Kings ($5,100)
Burks returned from a multi-week absence on Thursday, scoring 20.75 DKFP in 31 minutes of action. He shot just 2-of-7 from the field, but his role was encouraging. Another 30-plus minute outing against the dreadful Sacramento defense could make for a get-right spot, especially with salary declining.
Worth Paying Up For: Jerami Grant, Detroit Pistons vs. Houston Rockets ($8,100)
My GUY, Jerami Grant, who has cashed the over on his point prop 13 games in a row, sits in another terrific spot on Friday. The Rockets will be without both Wall and Christian Wood, and already rank 22nd in DKFP allowed to SF. Grant’s averaging just shy of 50 DKFP over his last three contests, and on a weak forward slate, this matchup stands out. He’s as consistent a play as you can find right now.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Jae’Sean Tate, Houston Rockets at Detroit Pistons ($4,900)
Because Houston is so thin, we should see plenty of Tate tonight. He’s played 30 and 37 minutes in his last two games, and the 37-minute range feels like the range we should expect with Wood sidelined. Tate’s only produced about 19-DKFP per game over that two-game span, but we know he has upside — 38.75 DKFP just last week. Wood’s absence opens up a lot here.
Worth Paying Up For: Julius Randle, New York Knicks at Sacramento Kings ($9,100)
Between Grant, Bagley and the value, paying up at PF probably isn’t a route I’ll go. But if I do, Randle is in a nice spot. Like Grant, he’s been super consistent, but he has the perfect matchup here. It can’t be stressed how poor the Kings are defensively, and they’ll be without some frontcourt pieces in this game. Should be another easy double-double here, and Randle was one dime short of the trip-dub last night at Golden State.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Marvin Bagley, Sacramento Kings vs. New York Knicks ($5,500)
Bagley’s been balling over the last few games, seeing some extra run with Sacramento down a couple bodies. He didn’t have the numbers last game with the Clippers blowing them out, but this should be a much more competitive game. Bagley dropped a 26-point, 20-rebound double-double this week, scoring 44 DKFP in 36 minutes. He brings that upside into this contest, with a safe floor for his price.
Worth Paying Up For: Clint Capela, Atlanta Hawks at Minnesota Timberwolves ($8,300)
Capela is on some kind of run. I’ll admit he’s expensive, but he’s right back in a matchup he should, and did, dominate earlier this week. After consecutive 54.25-DKFP games, one of which was against Minnesota on Monday, Capela dropped a 27-point, 26-rebound, five-block masterpiece on the Pistons, good for 76 DKFP, and 10X value. The Wolves have been the third-worst team defending centers this season.
Best Bang For Your Buck: DeMarcus Cousins, Houston Rockets at Detroit Pistons ($4,400)
Houston just has no bigs in this game, so even though Cousins is yet to play more than 23 minutes this season, this spot sets up for his role to see a massive boost. Boogie’s been insanely efficient this season, averaging 19.4 DKFP in 14.1 minutes per game. If he can play 30 minutes in this game, we’re talking a very high ceiling. Detroit ranks 29th defending centers, and just gave up that historic stat line to Capela on Wednesday.
Overall Lineup Strategy
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With 11 games the slate is pretty wide open, unlike our short Monday and Thursday slates. It’s almost worthless to offer too much advice here, I’ll just say if you want to be a little different, I think you can build a reasonable lineup with all plays under $9,000. Gives you some nice balance, and you only have to pay down for safe values like Bagley and Boogie.
Key Injuries to Monitor
— Kevin Durant is out due to injury recovery.
— Christian Wood has been ruled out with an ankle injury, John Wall remains out with a knee injury.
— Pascal Siakam is questionable with a groin injury.
— Tyler Herro is questionable with a neck injury. Jimmy Butler remains out.
— Myles Turner is questionable with a hand injury.
— Jayson Tatum and Karl-Anthony Towns remain out due to COVID-19.
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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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