Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings at each position for Monday’s NBA slate, along with some strategy unique to this slate.
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Worth Paying Up For: Russell Westbrook, Washington Wizards vs. San Antonio Spurs ($10,900)
The top of the point guard pool is littered with red O’s so the pickings are slim. Luka Doncic ($11,100) only has a red Q and his matchup/game environment is juicy, but his availability is up in the air, so Westbrook it is. However, if Doncic is good to go, then I’m going with him. After I wrote this section, it was announced that Westbrook is also questionable so, <throws papers into the air> keep an eye on all the news during the day. Westbrook is coming off a sub-par game by his standards of 40.25 DKFP yesterday. Prior to that, he had gone for at least 60 DKFP in eight of 11 games with a high of 71.75. The Spurs are tough against point guards as they neutralize the FPPM by 5.44% below league average, and they are 11th in defensive efficiency, but Westbrook is a threat to triple-double on any night. His floor is the ceiling for most other guards.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Cory Joseph, Detroit Pistons vs. Atlanta Hawks ($5,000)
Over the past 10 games, Joseph has missed three of them. When he has played, he’s been the starter and averaged 30.8 minutes per contest. He’s contributed 40.75, 21.75, 49.25, 11.5, 22.25, 39.75 and 23 DKFP. He garners a 16% usage rate and should continue to start and get the bulk of the point guard minutes. At some point, Killian Hayes ($4,600) could shift into this role, but it hasn’t happened or been announced that it’s on the immediate horizon.
Worth Paying Up For: Paul George, Los Angeles Clippers at New Orleans Pelicans ($9,600)
We know the drill by now. When Kawhi Leonard is out, like he is today, you play George. Easy peasy. With Leonard off the floor, George sees an 8.6 percentage point usage rate bump to 38.8%. Since March 1, Kawhi has missed seven games. During those contests, George has put up 47.75, 47.75, 50.75, 60.25, 61.75 and 56.25 DKFP. George missed one of those games as well. The awesome thing for me is that the above was written for the last Cheat Sheet piece. Nothing has changed. The only amendment needed is that George put up 60 DKFP on Friday in a game that Kawhi missed.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Lou Williams, Atlanta Hawks at Detroit Pistons ($4,500)
Writing up Williams here is gross. Since arriving in Atlanta, he’s scored single-digit DKFP in two games, so the floor is low. With that said, he’s gone for at least 20 DKFP in seven of 14 games with a high of 40. The usage rate has been a healthy 26% and he’s averaging 10.9 shot attempts per game. The shooting efficiency has been a rough 40%, but he still has the capacity to go on heaters. With Trae Young out, the playing time and Williams’ role as microwave off the bench are secure.
Worth Paying Up For: DeMar DeRozan, San Antonio Spurs at Washington Wizards ($8,700)
Unlike the point guard position, there are plenty of options to choose from at small forward. I’m going to take the discount in price and go with DeRozan, though. On the season, the usage rate is 26% but that spikes to above 30% on occasion in competitive games. The Wizards are playing at home and are 9-1 in their past 10 games. DraftKings Sportsbook has the Spurs favored by 3.5 points, so it should be a close one. The Wizards also play at the fastest pace in the league, so more possessions to accumulate fantasy goodies.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Reggie Bullock, New York Knicks vs. Phoenix Suns ($4,800)
Over the past seven games, Bullock has averaged 36.9 minutes and 8.3 3-pointers per game, which has translated to 14.9 points and 26.17 DKFP. He’s been hyper-efficient from the field, converting 44% of his attempts from downtown, so that will regress at some point. He’s shooting 40% on the season. Bullock is only averaging 0.67 DKFP per minute but should pay off his salary due to the sheer number of minutes he’s out on the floor.
Worth Paying Up For: Pascal Siakam, Toronto Raptors vs. Cleveland Cavaliers ($8,900)
It’s been an up-and-down season for Siakam. He’s scored under 20 DKFP in three games this season while going over 50 DKFP 13 times. We never knew if he’d go for 30 DKFP or 50 on any given night. Over the past four games, though, he’s averaged a whopping 39 minutes per game and put up 40, 49.25, 51.25 and 45.25 DKFP. Now he gets a matchup against a Cavaliers team that boosts the FPPM to power forwards by 13.5% above league average. I’m getting some vibes of Lucy pulling the football away but I’m running full steam ahead regardless.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Chuma Okeke, Orlando Magic vs. Los Angeles Lakers ($4,900)
Okeke only averages 0.75 DKFP per minute. He’s played 33, 33, 29 and 30 minutes over the past four games, though. He contributed 32, 21.25, 13.25 and 26.75 DKFP. He shot 1-for-12 in one of those games but he’s attempted double-digit shots in each game. He also chips in some rebounds, assists and defensive stats, so he’s not entirely dependent on scoring. Okeke has gone over 40 DKFP twice this season so there is access to ceiling.
Worth Paying Up For: Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets vs. Memphis Grizzlies ($11,000)
Jokic is averaging 1.6 DKFP per minute on the season. He does it all and can provide fantasy goodies in a variety of ways. Since posting a 78.75 DKFP performance against the Grizzlies four games ago, Jokic has gone for 44.25, 35 and 55.5 DKFP. The sky is falling! Well, he gets the Grizzlies again tonight. They boost the FPPM to centers by 11.71% above league average.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Daniel Gafford, Washington Wizards vs. San Antonio Spurs ($3,900)
Gafford averages 1.39 DKFP per minute. Unfortunately, the minutes have been inconsistent because the coaching staff loves playing Alex Len ($3,400). I don’t know why either. Over the past six games, Gafford has played over 24 minutes in three games and around 16 minutes in the other three. He’s scored 33.75, 26, 21.25, 38.5, 14.5 and 38.5 DKFP. He has three games with four blocks in a game! There’s risk here since we don’t know exactly how many minutes he will receive, but there’s a ton of upside if the coaching staff finally comes to their senses or finds the stash of pictures that Len has hidden somewhere.
Overall Lineup Strategy
It’s a massive slate with the DEN/MEM, SA/WAS, and LAC/NO game environments standing out to me. The risk of a blowout is elevated for the UTA/MIN, LAL/ORL, and OKC/PHI. The value isn’t great right now but that’s going to change as the day progresses, as a ton of big-name players are listed as questionable.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is sontzu) 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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