The Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers will add another chapter to their historic rivalry on Christmas Day when the two teams meet in the headliner for the NBA’s slate of games. Here’s a look at one potential lineup strategy to use for DFS Showdown contests in this matchup, featuring Captain’s picks, flex plays and fades.
Jayson Tatum ($15,000) - The forward has put up 40+ DKFP in eight straight games, including 2 50+ DKFP showings. Tatum has been for a force for Boston despite the additions of Kristaps Porzingis and Jrue Holiday, which makes him a worthy selection as a captain. His rebounding has improved over the last few seasons, and his ability to get hot from deep gives him more upside than some other candidates.
LeBron James ($15,300) - As he gets closer to his 39th birthday, James continues to dominate like he’s in his mid 20s. The King is averaging 50.8 DKFP per game this season, and has topped 60 DKFP in three of his last five games. He’s the one in the spotlight for the NBA’s signature game on a marquee day, so look for him to deliver a big-time performance.
Derrick White ($7,600) - You have to roster White after the week he’s been having. The guard has gone for 47+ DKFP in three of his last five games, including two 50+ DKFP efforts. White is capable of getting hot from deep, and he’s a solid all-around contributor with 16.5 points, 4 rebounds and 5 assists per game. At this price, it’s hard to find a better option.
Taurean Prince ($4,800) - The small forward should remain in the starting lineup as the Lakers continue to tinker with the rotation. Prince isn’t a high-usage player but he’s a nice bargain at this price given his workload. He’s averaging 26.9 DFKP over the last three games and is worth rostering despite the tough matchup. Boston is the best team at defending opposing small forwards when it comes to fantasy points allowed.
D’Angelo Russell ($7,000) - The Lakers have moved Russell out of the starting lineup, and that trend is expected to continue again Monday. It’s hard to develop a feel for the game when you have an inconsistent role, so Russell will need some time to adjust. His three-point shooting gives him some value but there are others to back at this price.
Sam Hauser ($5,200) - Now, this price point might change if Porzingis is ruled out for the game. That doesn’t seem like the case at this point, which makes Hauser a bit of an afterthought. He’s going to be the fourth option offensively at best when he’s on the floor, and that largely means standing in space waiting to take a shot instead of moving for the ball. He’s done well in his role but he’s not worth adding to your lineup here.
The Celtics have done well in their last two road games, but they’re not as lethal as when they play at home. The Lakers have done exceptionally well at home, largely thanks to their improved defensive play in a friendly atmosphere. These rivalry games usually come down to the wire, and I like this to a be a relatively low-scoring contest which the home side takes.
Final score: Lakers 112, Celtics 107