We get a battle of two title contenders in the second round of the 2023 NBA playoffs Saturday with Game 1 between the Phoenix Suns and Denver Nuggets. Tipoff is set for 8:30 p.m. ET on TNT. With so much offensive talent available for DFS lineups, it might be hard to choose who to roster and who to leave out.
Here we’ll take a look at one potential DFS strategy for Showdown contests on DraftKings involving this matchup with Captain’s picks, flex plays and fades.
Devin Booker ($16,500) - This is actually a bargain price for the production. Booker saved his best performance against the Clippers for the final game, going for 47 points and 78 DKFP. He’s averaged 60.5 DKFP during the series, and there’s little reason to believe his usage will decrease in this matchup. Booker is an easy captain for Showdown contests tonight.
Jamal Murray ($14,100) - It might be tough to pick against Nikola Jokic here, but the price point for the big man is a bit high at $18.6K. Murray offers more value at a slight discount. He averaged 47.1 DKFP during the opening round against the Timberwolves and will continue to be aggressive offensively in Game 1. He has upside as a perimeter shooter, and is on a bit of a heater in terms of efficiency. Back Murray to have a big game Saturday.
Nikola Jokic ($12,400) - You might not roster Jokic as a captain, but you have to put him in the lineup. The big man is a walking triple-double, coming a combined 10 assists and rebounds away from having one in every game of the first round. The usage and minutes will be there for the big man, who has always fared well at home.
Bruce Brown ($5,000) - Brown isn’t going to shock the world in terms of fantasy points, but he’s consistent. And at this price point, consistency might be the best value play. The Suns are a bit thin on the bench as well, which means Brown might get some favorable matchups. He’s a strong option to round out lineups.
Chris Paul ($8,200) - Paul did well defensively in the first round, and garnered enough assists to deliver fantasy value. However, his scoring game has dropped off to the point where this price is a bit much to pay. There’s better ways to spend your cash in Showdown contests, so fade Paul tonight.
Aaron Gordon ($7,200) - If you compare Gordon’s production against Brown’s (who is $2k less), you might not see much of a difference. Showdown contests are about maximizing every dollar, and Gordon simply hasn’t brought it offensively in the playoffs so far. He’s also the fourth option in this Nuggets offense, which makes this price point tough to pay.
All four regular season meetings between these two teams had asterisks from a lineup standpoint, so it’s tough to tell how these matchups will play out. The Suns have only lost once with Kevin Durant in the lineup, while the Nuggets were one of the best teams in the league at home. Look for a tightly contested battle to go down to the wire, with Denver making one more play than Phoenix to take the win.
Final score: Nuggets 119, Suns 117