Whether you’re chasing or just not a football fan, there is always a Sunday NBA DFS slate waiting for you. These slates are not very big, so the research process can be light. While everyone else dedicates their day to the NFL, we can get ahead by digging into the six-game evening slate that starts at 6 p.m. ET.
Delay the work week a few more hours. Get in on some NBA DFS action, and start by enjoying another colorful weekend edition of the NBA Targets.
Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks vs. Denver Nuggets, $12,700 — Sunday’s slate is larger than usual but it’s not filled with elite guards. Even if it were, Doncic would still be the No. 1 play. He currently leads the league in scoring with 34.4 PPG and fills all of the other per-game statistical categories — 8.8 rebounds and 7.8 assists. That all adds up to an eye-popping 1.7 FPPM. On Sunday night, Doncic will face a team that will not be at 100% strength. This is a runback from Friday night. In round one, Doncic scored 71 DKFP in a blowout win over the short-handed Nuggets.
Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors at Houston Rockets, $10,700 — There are blow out concerns. Houston has dealt with injuries of late and they’re Houston — third-worst defensive efficiency rating. Aside from the blowout threat, making this matchup even more appealing is the fact that Houston plays at ninth-fastest pace. Curry only managed 52 DKFP on Friday night in the Warriors’ double-digit win over the Knicks. His DKFP total is unappealing in direct comparison to Doncic’s Friday showing, but Curry will certainly go lower owned in a pristine matchup. Also, his lower than normal total was not for lack of trying. He chucked 13 threes but five fell. Getting a chucking Curry with lower ownership in a fast matchup might be the play on Sunday night.
Gabe Vincent, Miami Heat at Cleveland Cavaliers, $4,600 — His price isn’t as low as it once was but that’s a good thing — he’s producing. The Heat could be missing a handful of players on Sunday and not just anyone. The stars could be out. Not in the way that the stars are shining. In the way that they’re sitting on the bench secretly eating popcorn. Vincent has thrived lately. His minutes, usage and DKFP per game are at career highs. On Sunday night, he faces the struggling Cavs, who rank last in Defensive Efficiency over the last week. The Cavs needed double overtime to beat the Hornets on Friday. Note: Gabe Vincent is listed as questionable after injuring his knee in warmups on Friday. The safer play is to pivot to other Heat or the plethora of value options on the Grizzlies.
Bones Hyland, Denver Nuggets at Dallas Mavericks, $5,600 — The NBA DFS season is in full swing. It’s not so much who is good, it’s who is out. Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic are expected to miss again due to the league’s health and safety protocols (both missed on Friday). Also, the Nuggets played the Mavericks on Friday. It seems like Friday’s box score should be a good starting point for research. Bones Hyland played 30 minutes and led the team with a 30.4% usage rate. Even with Jokic and Murray on the court, Hyland had been on a roll. He’s been one of the best point-per-dollar plays over the last two weeks with value returns of 8.8x, 10.7x, 5.6x, 6x and 6x. His only miss over the last six games was a 4.4x when he turned the ball over an uncharacteristic five times.
Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets vs. Memphis Grizzlies, $11,700 — This is a buy-low opportunity at a steep market price. The sentiment around Durant is low but his price is always high. This could suppress his ownership. Other spend up options, such as Curry, Doncic and LeBron James, are in better positions or are trending better. Durant is trending in the wrong direction but the Nets bounced back after their legendary beatdown at the hands of the Kings (153-121). The matchup is favorable with the Grizzlies playing at an above-average pace with a below-average defense. If the Nets are going to inch closer to .500 by beating the Grizzlies, then the only way that happens is if Durant takes over.
Kyle Kuzma, Washington Wizards vs. Charlotte Hornets, $8,300 — The expectations for the Hornets in 2022-23 weren’t high entering the season. Now that the injury bug has bit Buzz City, the bees are about to become bums and go full tank mode. The Hornets are in the bottom third of the league in Defensive Efficiency and they rank in the top half in pace. The Wizards are healthy, so Kuzma’s recent enlarged role will diminish going forward. DFS players will absolutely bail. That’s fine, but there is GPP upside with this play because Kuzma played well in his increased role. Sure, his usage will be lower, but this is a hot player with low ownership in a very good matchup.
Jabari Smith Jr., Houston Rockets vs. Golden State Warriors, $5,200 — The No. 3 pick started his NBA career with a couple of good games, then he started to look like a rookie. However, over the last week, Smith is starting to improve. He’s capable of double-digit boards, plays close to 30 minutes and will chuck. Even during his dry spell, the rookie didn’t flinch. He just kept firing. With the Rockets dealing with injuries and likely to be trailing by a significant margin, it would make sense for the Rockets to let Smith get plenty of developmental run. To Jabari, that means take a bunch of shots and don’t worry about it.
LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers vs. San Antonio Spurs, $10,400 — This will be the Spurs’ fifth game in seven days (all road games) and it’s the second of a back-to-back. They have *one* win in their last 10 games. The Lakers aren’t winning many games either, but LeBron James is rested. The 37-year-old hasn’t played since Wednesday, when he scored 30 points in 32 minutes with eight rebounds and five assists. The Spurs play at the sixth-fastest pace and they have the worst defense in the NBA. With this being the final game of their road trip, they will likely allow more points than their 115.0 defensive efficiency rating suggests they should. Note: LeBron James is listed as questionable for Sunday night’s game. In other news, water is wet.
DeAndre Jordan, Denver Nuggets at Dallas Mavericks, $3,800 — What year is it? Jokic has missed the last two games and is unlikely to exit the league’s health and safety protocols on Sunday. That means another start for Jordan. He played 26 minutes on Wednesday and 20 in a blowout loss to the Mavs on Friday. Interestingly, he scored 20 DKFP in the blowout and 18.5 in the win vs. the Knicks. With limited bodies and a small slate, he’s an easy option.
Usman Garuba, Houston Rockets vs. Golden State Warriors, $3,700 — He’s a point-per-minute player this season, but he’s not getting many minutes. Still, in 22 minutes on Wednesday, Garuba scored 34.75 DKFP. In two of three before that, he scored over 20 DKFP twice in 17 and 14 minutes of action. He disappointed on Friday and there are plenty of value options available, so no one is going to Garuba. His lackluster performance was simply the result of not grabbing a few boards. That should be easily remedied on Sunday night. The Warriors allow the fifth-most DKFP to opposing centers and seventh-most rebounds.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is greenflagradio2) 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.