Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings at each position for Wednesday’s NBA slate, along with some strategy unique to this slate.
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Worth Paying Up For: Russell Westbrook, Washington Wizards at Atlanta Hawks ($12,400)
Westbrook is how much? $20,000 you say? Just play him and we shall figure out the rest. $12,400 is a freaking bargain then! I kid but I’m kind of not.
The floor-ceiling combo is unmatched. This is reminiscent of those runs that James Harden would have during his glory days in Houston. Will he be less aggressive now that he has the all-time regular-season triple-double record? I guess it’s a possibility but I’m not buying that narrative. Westbrook goes pedal to the metal each and every game so, another triple-double is pretty much in the bag. It’s just a matter of how many DKFP he’s going to score. I usually look at pace and matchup information for the opponent but I didn’t even bother. Over the last six games, he’s played 40, 44, 44, 40, 39, and 40 minutes, contributing 80.25, 87.75, 63.25, 81, 81.75, and 74 DKFP.
Oh, and Bradley Beal is out for this one.
Best Bang For Your Buck: D.J. Augustin, Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Lakers ($3,900)
The Rockets have six players out today with another three as questionable. Augustin is going to start. Since returning from a 12-game absence, he has played 26, 18, and 29 minutes, garnering a usage rate of 24, 12, and 25. He only played 18 minutes in that one game because it was the second leg of a back-to-back. He should approach 30 minutes in this one and, on the season, he’s averaging 0.95 DKFP per minute.
Worth Paying Up For: Jordan Clarkson, Utah Jazz vs. Portland Trail Blazers ($7,500)
Mike Conley and Donovan Mitchell have both missed the last eight games. During that span, Clarkson has averaged 30.8 minutes, 19.3 shot attempts, and garnered a usage rate of 32. He’s scored 28.25, 28, 24.25, 33.5, 44, 45.75, 33.25, and 54.5 DKFP. Both Conley and Mitchell are out for this one so Clarkson should continue getting tons of usage. The game environment is a good one since Portland is 29th in defensive efficiency.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Naji Marshall, New Orleans Pelicans at Dallas Mavericks ($4,800)
Marshall has started the last three games because Brandon Ingram has been out. Ingram is unlikely to play today so Marshall should get another start. He’s played 27, 27, and 31 minutes, contributing 21.75, 17.75, and 38.25 DKFP. On the season, Marshall averages 0.89 DKFP per minute.
Worth Paying Up For: Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets vs. San Antonio Spurs ($9,800)
Durant is back, baby! And it’s glorious because he is one of the most unstoppable offensive forces in the game and contributes in every statistical category. Over the last five games, he’s played 40, 40, 36, 41, and 32 minutes. He’s gone for at least 50 DKFP in three of those games with two over 60. Now, James Harden ($10,600) could return today and Kyrie Irving ($9,200) is a game-time decision as he took an elbow to the face on Tuesday. The usage could be more spread out evenly if all three play. This season, the Big 3 has played in seven games together. I will throw out the one game Durant left early due to an injury. So six games. In those contests, Durant’s usage was 28, 30, 30, 31, 24, and 31. The DKFP was 37.75, 39.25, 46.25, 52.25, 46, and 77. He will be fine if the other two play. There’s a chance that neither of them plays, which would be a boon for Durant.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Talen Horton-Tucker, Los Angeles Lakers vs. Houston Rockets ($4,400)
Alex Caruso injured his foot during Tuesday’s game. As a result, Horton-Tucker stepped into his role. The usage rate was 23 and he ended up playing 34 minutes, contributing 13 points, two three-pointers (the game-winner), five rebounds, 10 assists, and two steals. Now, Caruso hasn’t been ruled out so the minutes could be capped in the low-20s. In addition, LeBron James ($10,200) is expected to return. That said, in a prior game this year in which Horton-Tucker started alongside James, he garnered a 22 usage rate and produced 21.25 DKFP. The Lakers are favored by 13 points in this one so James may not get a full allotment of minutes.
Worth Paying Up For: Kelly Olynyk, Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Lakers ($7,800)
Wow, we are paying up for Olynyk. What a time to be alive.
There’s no denying the usage and production, though. Over the last two games, the usage rate has been 29 and 31, as the Rockets have been decimated by injuries. Over the last nine games, he’s produced at least 40 DKFP in eight of those contests with two above 50 and a high of 63.25 DKFP. The crazy thing is that it hasn’t just been about the O for Kelly O. He’s averaged 2.1 steals and 0.7 blocks.
Best Bang For Your Buck: James Johnson, New Orleans Pelicans at Dallas Mavericks ($5,000)
Zion Williamson will miss his fourth straight game. As a result, Johnson will be making his fourth consecutive start. He’s played 27, 31, and 28 minutes, contributing 20, 33, and 31.25 DKFP. He’s an across-the-board contributor who has been able to access ceiling due to the 13 and 10 shot attempts.
Worth Paying Up For: Clint Capela, Atlanta Hawks vs. Washington Wizards ($8,600)
The Wizards are one of the best matchups for opposing centers. They play at the fastest pace and boost the FPPM by 13.2% above league average. Capela has faced them twice this season, with the most recent meeting on Monday, and he’s put up 48 and 42 DKFP. The floor is pretty much locked in and he does have ceiling potential as he’s gone for over 60 DKFP five times this season with a high of 76.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Jaxson Hayes, New Orleans Pelicans at Dallas Mavericks ($4,900)
Steven Adams has been ruled out so the playing time is secure for Hayes. Unfortunately, it looks like he’s locked into around 24 minutes per contest, which is a shame because he averages 0.95 DKFP per minute. Regardless, he’s known for his rebounding and contributions on defense but he’s attempted 10, 11, and 16 shots over the past three games and scored 13, 18, and 19 points respectively. He’s put up 19, 42, and 41 DKFP.
Overall Lineup Strategy
Who are you rostering with Westbrook? That is the existential question of the day. The optimizers love the Celtics players against the Cavaliers for some reason. The POR/UTA intrigues me, as the spread is the tightest on the slate and the O/U is a healthy 234.5.
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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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