Miami and New York are playing the second game of their series. while Los Angeles and Golden State begin the first of seven between these two cities. There are tons of theories on how they will play out with Google appreciating the millions of queries. None of the teams are perfect and all have obvious weaknesses like Achilles. The path to advance will not be one of ease. Instead, it will be difficult like a toddler just learning how to read.
Jimmy Butler ($9,400), Jalen Brunson ($8,400) and Julius Randle ($6,900) are the players listed as questionable on the injury report. Keep abreast of all the injury news @dklive.
DraftKings Sportsbook has the MIA/NYK game with a 206.5 total and the home team Knicks favored by 6.5 points. The LAL/GSW game has a 228 total and the home team Warriors are favored by 4.5 points.
RJ Barrett, New York Knicks vs. Miami Heat ($6,600) – Yes, I am fading Stephen Curry ($9,900). I don’t feel great about it because, well, it’s Stephen Freaking Curry, and he can break the slate on any night. That said, while he’s still going to get his, I have doubts that he puts up a “have-to-have-it” score that would make his price tag worth it.
Therefore, I will go with Barrett, which is also scary but for different reasons. Barrett has shooting efficiency issues, posting a 43% field goal percentage during the regular season. In Game 1 against Cleveland, he shot 4-of-13. Gross. Since then, though, he’s converted at least 50% of his attempts in each of the four games on 12, 18, 13 and 20 attempts. He’s not settling and is being aggressive by driving to the basket, which has provided an uptick in free-throw attempts as well.
Barrett has gone for at least 32 DKFP in each of the last four games with 48.25 in Game 1 against Miami. The usage rate was 30.8%, and that could tick higher if Brunson is out or hobbled.
Other Options - Austin Reaves ($6,000)
Kyle Lowry, Miami Heat at New York Knicks ($4,900) – Lowry averaged 0.87 DKFP per minute this season. While the season stats say that he averaged 31.2 minutes per game, most of that happened early in the season, as he was playing 34 to 38 minutes a night. He even played 51 minutes in a game. Then he suffered some injuries and missed most of February. Since returning, he averaged 23.1 minutes and, in these playoffs, has played fewer than 20 minutes in three of the six games.
In Game 1 against New York, though, he played 30 minutes in helping Miami take away home-court advantage. With Jimmy Butler ($9,400) banged up, Lowry will likely see a similar workload. While he likely won’t replicate the 43.75 DKFP he contributed, there’s a good chance he pays off his salary. Just know that there is volatility here, especially in the playing time, so if the projected ownership gets too high, then pivoting could be the way.
Other Options - Gabe Vincent ($5,300), Max Strus ($4,800)
Draymond Green, Golden State Warriors vs. Los Angeles Lakers ($6,500) – Green isn’t the sexiest player and the usage rate can be 7% or 25%. It doesn’t matter because he produces and has a relatively high floor due to his well-rounded game. Could he score 20 points? He can, but more than likely he will contribute fewer than 10, but he rebounds, dishes out dimes and racks up defensive stats.
He is such a vital cog for the Warriors that the minutes are secure. In this series, he could see an uptick in minutes as well because Kevon Looney ($6,700) may not see the same amount of run as he has been. Looney played 30 minutes a night against the Kings. In four games against the Lakers during the regular season, he played only 20 minutes a game. Just hope that he doesn’t pick up silly techs and gets ejected.
Over the last four games, he’s put up 32, 29.5, 45.5 and 40 DKFP. In four games against the Lakers this season, he’s gone for 29, 30.25 and 41.75 DKFP. His price and the question marks at some of the higher-priced options at the position have me leaning more toward safety here. If the projected ownership gets too high, though, and those higher-priced options get too devalued, then consideration should be made in flipping things around.
Other Options - Andrew Wiggins ($7,000)
Kevin Love, Miami Heat at New York Knicks ($4,700) – Love will probably only play around 20 minutes, but he averages 1.03 DKFP per minute so he could still pay off his price tag. He can still score, grab rebounds and dish out some dimes. His ability to stretch the floor while also providing some size is a nice piece of Spoelstra. There is upside as well. He did play 32 minutes in the clincher against Milwaukee and, if Butler is out or hobbled, Love could be asked to play a more significant role.
Other Options - Josh Hart ($5,900), Jarred Vanderbilt ($3,900)
Bam Adebayo, Miami Heat at New York Knicks ($7,800) – I have questions about all the high-priced options on this slate and constructing lineups with any of them is a challenge. Adebayo isn’t cheap and the range of outcomes is wide, as it wouldn’t surprise if he scored 20 DKFP. He does have 50 DKFP upside, though, and if Butler misses this game, the usage rate would see a big spike. With Butler off the court this season, Adebayo has garnered a 28.91% usage rate.
Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks vs. Miami Heat ($5,600) – Robinson put up 27.5 DKFP in Game 1. The important number is 34, though. That’s how many minutes he received. In the clincher against Cleveland, he received 36 minutes of run. Minutes are half the battle. Yo, Joe! Robinson is a low-usage player, so points will not be voluminous. Where he makes his hay is on the boards and with defensive stats. He averages 0.96 DKFP per minute and he does have 50-DKFP upside, something he did twice this season. For transparency, though, those games were against the Pacers at the end of the season with no Brunson or Randle. Hey, 50 DKFP are 50 DKFP.
Other Options - Obi Toppin ($5,000) if Randle is out
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