There are five games for Sunday’s NBA main slate with the Cavaliers at Celtics and Hornets at Magic tipping off at 7:00 p.m. ET. The Hawks at Bucks and Wizards at Spurs start at 8:00 p.m. ET while the late-night hammer is the Knicks at Trail Blazers. DK Sportsbook has two games with an O/U of 230.5 (ATL at MIL, WAS at SA), the biggest favorite being 8.5 points (MIL), and the tightest spread of 4 points being NYK at POR.
Let’s break down some of the top studs and values at each position to help you build your lineups.
Damian Lillard, Trail Blazers vs. Knicks, $10,000 – The game environment isn’t favorable as the Knicks play at the slowest pace in the league and are sixth in defensive efficiency. The O/U is 213.5 and the Knicks decrease fantasy points per minute to points guards by 3.66% below league average.
With that said, it’s Damian Freaking Lillard. He’s gone for 50.75 and 57.75 DKFP the past two games and put up a season-high 71.25 DKFP four games ago. Now CJ McCollum is out, so Lillard is going to have to do some heavy lifting if the Trail Blazers are going to be competitive. In the last game with McCollum out, Lillard garnered a usage rate of 38.4, which should be the norm going forward.
On the season, Lillard is averaging 1.3 DKFP per minute and 43.37 DKFP per game.
Other Options – Dejounte Murray ($7,000), Jrue Holiday ($7,300)
Kemba Walker, Celtics at Cavaliers, $6,300 – As with Lillard above, the game environment isn’t a good one. The Cavs are 28th in pace and fifth in defensive efficiency. They also decrease the fantasy points per minute to point guards by 2.71% below league average.
Since returning to action, though, Walker has slowly been ramping up. He played 19 minutes in his return, then received 21 and 28 minutes in the following games. The DKFP has increased in tandem, going from 22.75 to 31.5 to 38.1. There’s a good chance Kemba goes over 30 minutes in this one.
In three games, Walker is averaging 1.29 DKFP per minute.
Other Options – Patty Mills ($5,000)
Bradley Beal, Wizards at Spurs, $10,200 – Feels strange writing Beal here because the Wizards haven’t played since Jan. 11! It’s good to have him back on the slate, though, because he’s been one of the top players on the DK streets, averaging 1.47 DKFP per minute and 49.66 DKFP per game. Over his past three games, Beal has gone for 64, 50.75 and 79.75 DKFP. Wowzers!
He now gets a matchup against the Spurs who are 14th in both pace and defensive efficiency. The Spurs do negate fantasy points per minute to shooting guards by 5.18% below league average, but Beal is matchup proof. Plus, Russell Westbrook and Raul Neto may miss this game, so Beal should garner as much usage as he can handle.
Other Options – Jaylen Brown ($8,600)
Jerome Robinson, Wizards at Spurs, $3,500 – This play is predicated on the injury news. Russell Westbrook and Raul Neto are listed as questionable while Troy Brown and Ish Smith have been ruled out. If all four cannot play, then Robinson could start his second game of the season. In his lone start, he played 24 minutes and contributed 12 points, two 3-pointers, four rebounds, two assists and one steal while garnering a 16.8% usage rate.
Other Options – Evan Fournier ($5,800), Alec Burks ($4,800)
DeMar DeRozan, Spurs vs. Wizards, $7,600 – Unlike for Lillard and Kemba above, the matchup doesn’t get much juicier for DeRozan. The Wizards play at the fastest pace in the league and are 29th in defensive efficiency. They also boost the fantasy points per minute for small forwards by 4.9% above league average.
On the season, DeRozan is averaging 1.18 DKFP per minute and 39.17 DKFP per game. The O/U is a healthy 230.5 and a possible mano-a-mano battle between Beal and DeRozan could be in the offing.
Other Options – RJ Barrett ($6,800)
Rodney Hood, Trail Blazers vs. Knicks, $3,800 – In the first game without McCollum, it was Hood who drew the start. He ended up playing 25 minutes and contributed 21 points, two 3-pointers, two rebounds, two assists and one steal. He garnered a whopping 30% usage rate. It was an interesting development considering the Trail Blazers were easing him back into action after the Achilles and quad injuries he suffered last year.
He’s not going to shoot 64% from the field as he did last game and he’s only averaging 0.6 DKFP per minute on the season, but if he starts and plays in the mid-20s, then he should pay off his price tag.
Other Options – Devin Vassell ($4,100)
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Bucks vs. Hawks, $10,400 – Giannis is averaging a robust 1.59 DKFP per minute and 47.62 DKFP per game. He’s gone for over 50 DKFP in eight games with five of those over 60 DKFP. The Hawks play at the 10th-fastest pace and are seventh in defensive efficiency. They actually defend the power forward position well and have Clint Capela protecting the rim. With that said, those are but speed bumps on the way to fantasy glory. Giannis is stupendous, splendiferous, staggering, stunning, sublime and sensational.
Other Option –Julius Randle ($9,200), John Collins ($7,000), PJ Washington ($6,600)
LaMarcus Aldridge, Spurs vs. Wizards, $6,000 – Aldridge has had more peaks and valleys than an EKG reading. He’s been more up and down than my growing, hormonal child. Over the past five games, he’s scored 14.5, 9, 29.5, 9.75 and 43.75 DKFP. LMA-O!
The matchup is a pristine one, though, as mentioned in the DeRozan blurb. Against power forwards, in particular, the Wizards boost fantasy points per minute by 3.31% over the league average.
There’s a risk for sure due to the inconsistency, but the setup for a ceiling game is well within the range of outcomes.
Other Options – Carmelo Anthony ($4,800)
Andre Drummond, Cavaliers at Celtics, $9,300 – As with Aldridge, Drummond has been all over the place from a DKFP perspective, albeit not as pronounced. He has a low of 25.25 DKFP on the season, but also a high of 74.75 DKFP. He’s scored fewer than 40 DKFP in five games while going over 50 in six games. With that said, he’s averaging 1.48 DKFP per minute and 43.81 DKFP per game.
He now gets a matchup against a Celtics team that boosts the fantasy points per minute to centers by 8.02% over league average.
Other Options – Nikola Vucevic ($9,100), Clint Capela ($8,500)
Robin Lopez, Wizards at Spurs, $4,600 – With Thomas Bryant done for the year, it’s Lopez who started the last game and played 26 minutes. Moritz Wagner played 22 minutes in that game, but he’s out due to COVID-19 protocols. The Wizards recently acquired Alex Len but he was likely just a depth signing.
Lopez is averaging 0.84 DKFP per minute in 177 minutes this season.
Other Options – Mitchell Robinson ($5,800)
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