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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Lineup Strategy for Celtics vs. Clippers Showdown on February 5

Garion Thorne gives his top NBA lineup advice for Friday’s fantasy basketball Showdown contest on DraftKings between the Celtics and Clippers, which starts at 10:00 p.m. ET.

LA Clippers v Brooklyn Nets Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

I feel like the Boston Celtics are just about ready to head back home. Trouble is, after tonight’s contest against the Los Angeles Clippers, the Celtics still have two games remaining on their West Coast swing. The goal? Win and try not to have anyone else get hurt. Boston’s already going to be without Marcus Smart (calf) for a few more weeks and, following Wednesday’s loss to Sacramento, the team now finds Jaylen Brown ($8,800; knee) questionable to suit up on Friday.

How does all this impact this evening’s Showdown slate? Let’s break it all down.

Editor’s Note: Celtics SG/SF Jaylen Brown (knee) has been ruled out for tonight’s game. Clippers SG Paul George (foot) has also been ruled out for tonight’s game.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $200K Fadeaway [$50K to 1st] (BOS vs LAC)


Big Trey Payday

Opt-in before the start of the 4th quarter and if a 3-point shot is made in the final minute of Friday’s BOS vs. LAC game, you get an entry to a $100K contest on Wednesday, 2/10! See the DraftKings Big Trey Payday page for more details!


SHOWDOWN STRATEGY

Captain’s Picks

Jayson Tatum ($15,900 CP) - Tatum’s value would obviously skyrocket if Brown were eventually ruled out of tonight’s tilt, as the All-Star owns a massive 34.9% usage rate and is averaging 1.40 DKFP per minute in his opportunities with both Brown and Smart off the floor in 2020-21. Kemba Walker ($8,000) could be another asset to look at in such a scenario — he’s produced an incredible 1.67 DKFP per minute with Brown and Smart sidelined — however, unlike Tatum, there still appears to be a cap on Walker’s contributions. To wit, the guard has only crested the 30-minute plateau once in his seven games this season, where Tatum is leading the NBA in minutes played across his past three starts (39.0). You’re definitely playing a premium for his services, but if Brown’s inactive, Tatum’s the lone Boston asset with 55.0 DKFP upside.

Kawhi Leonard ($15,300 CP) - There’s only two players on the Clippers averaging more than 27.0 DKFP per game. There’s only two players on the Clippers taking more than 10.0 shots per game. There’s only two players on the Clippers logging more than 30.0 minutes per game. Any guesses as to who these two Los Angeles assets are? Give up? It’s Leonard and Paul George ($9,600). Shocking stuff, I know. The point being, when we’re discussing possible Captain’s picks on that side of the matchup, the two All-Stars are really the only viable candidates, especially with the Clippers at full-health aside from Patrick Beverley (knee). Across the team’s past 10 contests, it’s Leonard that’s registered more minutes (339), a higher usage rate (29.8%) and more DKFP per minute (1.39). The former Finals MVP is also one of just four qualified players this season shooting at least 50% from the field, 40% from three-point range and 90% from the free throw line. Though, to be fair, George is one of the other three men, illustrating how similar these two players can be from a fantasy perspective.


Value UTIL Plays

Reggie Jackson ($5,600) - Jackson is on the heels of his worst performance of the season, as he scored zero points in 23 minutes of work against the Cavaliers on Wednesday. Now, while some might see that as a bad omen, I’m willing to give Jackson the benefit of the doubt. Not only was the game script a little awkward in the 121-99 blowout, but Jackson’s simply been quite the DFS asset since the aforementioned Beverley went down with injury in late January. In fact, in the five contests prior to the goose egg, the guard had produced 32.7 DKFP with above-average marks in assist rate (21.6%) and total rebounding rate (9.6%). On a night where things should be much more competitive, I’ll go back to the well with Jackson.

Grant Williams ($1,000) - Williams’ role has been fluctuating all season long in Boston — he even started four games in a row in mid-January — but it seems like he’s always at least pencilled into Brad Stevens’ rotation for 12-16 minutes a night. It’s easy to see why, too. Though Williams is far from an accomplished scorer, he can defend multiple positions, he rebounds well and, in 2020-21, he’s shooting 45.7% from three-point range. Williams could be in line for a few extra minutes of work if Brown is unable to go; however, even if that’s not the case, Williams has managed 10-plus DKFP in three of his last four appearances and in nearly half his games for the season as a whole. In Showdown, you can never overlook 10x value, especially on a slate this top-heavy.


Fades

Jeff Teague ($5,200) - I’ve reached my breaking point with the former All-Star. Teague has been horrendous all season for the Celtics, with his .376 effective field goal rate standing as easily the worst mark in the NBA had Teague played enough minutes to qualify. Even when given the opportunity to start in Walker’s place on Wednesday, the veteran managed just 11.75 DKFP in 23 minutes of action. If Brown is ruled out, there’s a chance you could talk yourself into Teague seeing 20-plus minutes again on Friday, but don’t fall victim to that line of thinking. Teague’s averaging a microscopic 0.57 DKFP per minute across his past nine contests and, on top of that, it’s possible Payton Pritchard ($4,000; knee) makes his return to the lineup this evening.


THE OUTCOME

Jaylen Brown’s status is obviously a huge factor in deciding how to handicap this matchup, so leaning towards the Clippers as a home favorite seems justified. The Celtics are just 1-4 ATS in their past five contests against an opponent with a winning percentage above .600, while Los Angeles in 7-3 ATS in its past 10 games overall. With Leonard and George playing at level they have been in 2020-21, it’s difficult to pick against them.

Final Score: Los Angeles 112, Boston 103

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $200K Fadeaway [$50K to 1st] (BOS vs LAC)


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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) 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.


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