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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Lineup Strategy for Thunder vs. Nuggets Showdown on November 3

Mike Barner gives his top NBA lineup advice for Thursday’s fantasy basketball contest on DraftKings between the Thunder and Nuggets.

Orlando Magic v Oklahoma City Thunder Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images

There are only two games in the NBA on Thursday, and neither matchup is all that exciting. To add some spice to the night, let’s dive into the featured at DraftKings Showdown contest between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Denver Nuggets.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $35K Fadeaway [$10K to 1st] (DEN vs OKC)

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Denver Nuggets

Captain’s Picks

Nikola Jokic ($18,600 CP): It’s going to be difficult to fade Jokic at Captain. His scoring numbers are down significantly this season with the Nuggets healthy again, but he’s not exactly struggling, with averages of 21 points, 11.1 rebounds and 8.4 assists per game. He’s shooting 58.6% from the field and 87.2% from the free-throw line. The Thunder don’t have a ton of size or talent at center, leaving Jokic with the potential to dominate this matchup.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander ($15,900 CP): When Gilgeous-Alexander plays, he’s as good as anyone in fantasy. He doesn’t have many great scoring options around him, which has resulted in his 33.3% usage rate. He’s averaging 54.4 DKFP per game, so if you want to fade Jokic and roll with a more well-balanced lineup, then Gilgeous-Alexander might be your man for this spot.

UTIL Plays

Michael Porter Jr. ($7,600): The return of Porter is one of the main reasons why Jokic’s scoring numbers are down. Porter has a 23.4% usage rate, which is on pace to be the highest mark of his career. He’s made the most of his increased scoring opportunities, averaging 18.5 points and 3.8 3-pointers per game while shooting 46.9% from the field. He shot at least 50.9% in both of his first two seasons in the league, so he could even improve in that area as the season moves along.

Aleksej Pokusevski ($5,200): Pokusevski is an intriguing young player who has the potential to be very valuable. He showed his upside Tuesday vs. the Magic, scoring 38.8 DKFP across 31 minutes. The problem is, this is not a good matchup for him against the much bulkier Jokic. Still, if he can find a way to avoid foul trouble, his salary is low enough to leave him with the potential to provide value.

Darius Bazley ($4,200): Bazley logged at least 28 minutes per game in both of the last two seasons, but he’s seen his playing time take a big hit to start 2022-23. He’s only averaging 18 minutes per game while exclusively coming off the bench. Still, he’s scored at least 21.5 DKFP in four of seven games. That means he should at least be on your radar, especially if you splurge at Captain with Jokic and his hefty salary.


Jamal Murray ($6,600): The return of Murray is the other main reason why Jokic has seen his scoring production decline. Unlike Porter, though, it hasn’t been smooth sailing right away for Murray. He’s shot just 41.5% from the field and has been eased back into things, averaging 27 minutes per game. If the Nuggets race out to a big lead early, the Nuggets could take it as an opportunity to give Murray some added time on the bench to rest. Even if they don’t, Murray might need some more time to shake off the rust before feeling confident about him in DFS.


The Thunder are rolling right now after winning four straight games. They are the healthiest that they have been in a while, and Gilgeous-Alexander is locked in. When these two teams met in Denver earlier in the season, the Nuggets won by five points. Another close battle could be forthcoming.

Final Score: Nuggets 118, Thunder 113

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $35K Fadeaway [$10K to 1st] (DEN vs OKC)

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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is mbarner51) 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.