Some slates present little opportunity for value. This is not one of those slates. Heck, we’re hours away from tip-off and we already know that Giannis Antetokounmpo (ankle) and LeBron James (adductor) won’t be active. You know, just the two most important players of the last decade. No big deal.
Let’s dive into the madness and make some picks.
PG/SG Kendrick Nunn, Los Angeles Lakers vs. Sacramento Kings, $3,100
Looking through Nunn’s box scores is pretty hilarious. He’s been held without a point in three of his last four appearances, yet the one game he did drop 18 was this past Monday against the Jazz — a contest where the aforementioned James was unavailable. In fact, Nunn started that evening, registering 20.25 DKFP in 26.8 minutes of action. The guard has never been shy about getting his shot up, which is apparent when you consider Nunn’s 24.4% usage rate in 2022-23 is fourth on the Lakers behind only James, Anthony Davis ($10,200) and Russell Westbrook ($7,300). At a price this close to the minimum, Nunn should be viable with James once again sidelined; however, he’s a slam dunk if Lonnie Walker IV ($5,100; illness) is unable to play through his questionable tag.
SF/PF Sam Hauser, Boston Celtics vs. Denver Nuggets, $3,700
The top seven names in the Celtics’ rotation are amazing, but while Robert Williams (knee) is unavailable, depth is going to be an issue. As soon as you start removing more names, you suddenly get into a territory that looks more befitting of Maine than Boston. That’s where we are on Friday. Malcolm Brogdon (hamstring) has been ruled out, which should open up some major minutes for a Celtics’ bench piece. The man who will likely get first crack to fill the void? Sam Hauser. The forward logged a team-high 31.8 minutes in Wednesday’s victory over the Pistons, as Hauser was red-hot from deep. He’d finish the contest 6-for-12 from beyond the arc with with 24 points and 29.5 DKFP. That’s not an aberration, either, as Hauser owns a career mark of 48.3% from three. Derrick White ($4,000) is another solid value option on Boston, but I like Hauser just slightly more.
SF MarJon Beauchamp, Milwaukee Bucks at San Antonio Spurs, $4,400
We’re in “rise and repeat” mode with the Bucks. I can promise things won’t go as smoothly as they did on Wednesday — back-to-back double-OT games seem unlikely — and everyone’s about $1,000 more expensive, but there’s still so, so much opportunity in Milwaukee’s rotation with no Antetokounmpo, Jrue Holiday (ankle) and Khris Middleton (wrist). To that end, Jevon Carter ($5,300) and Grayson Allen ($5,100) are the two assets with the highest upside on this roster, despite each rising out of “value” pricing. However, Beauchamp is also in a very tantalizing spot. The rookie started against the Thunder, managing 19 points and 34.5 DKFP with a respectable 22.1% usage rate. The Bucks draw an incredible matchup, as well. San Antonio comes into tonight’s slate sitting fifth in the NBA in pace and second-lowest in defensive rating (116.7).
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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 do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. 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.