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Fantasy Basketball Picks: Top DraftKings NBA DFS Lineup Strategy for Suns vs. Pelicans Showdown on December 29

Mike Barner gives his top NBA lineup advice for Tuesday’s fantasy basketball Showdown contest on DraftKings between the Suns and Pelicans, which starts at 10:00 p.m. ET.

San Antonio Spurs v New Orleans Pelicans Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

There will be no shortage of NBA action on Tuesday with 10 games on the schedule. One of them will be a battle between the New Orleans Pelicans and Phoenix Suns, two teams that have playoff aspirations in the Western Conference. This game is also the featured NBA Showdown contest on DraftKings, so let’s highlight some players to consider when building your lineups.

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $80K Finger Roll [$20K to 1st] (NOP vs PHO)


Captain’s Pick

Brandon Ingram ($14,100 CP) — Ingram was busy on the offensive end last season, recording a 28.1 percent usage rate. Much of the same appears to be on tap for him this season after he posted a 30.3 percent usage rate through the Pelicans’ first three games. He’s not just looking for his own shot, either, totaling 20 assists through three games. Add in his usual dose of hefty minutes and he’s one of the safer options for the Captain’s Pick in this contest.

Zion Williamson ($13,800 CP) — Williamson has been on fire out of the gate, recording three straight double-doubles. He has posted at least 44.8 DKFP in back-to-back contests, thanks in large part to him attempting at least 20 shots in both contests. The key difference for Williamson in the early going has been added playing time. He averaged only 28 minutes per game in his rookie season, but he’s averaged 35 minutes through three games this season. As long as he continues to see increased playing time, he should continue to have an extremely high floor.

FLEX Plays

Chris Paul ($8,200) — Paul is off to a slow start offensively, scoring exactly eight points in two of the Suns’ first three games. He attempted 10 or fewer shots in both of those contests and he could see his usage rate decline this season playing alongside Devin Booker ($10,000). However, he should still rack up assists in bunches, evident by the fact that he has recorded 12 dimes in back-to-back games. Add in his usual steady contributions on the glass and with steals and Paul is an appealing option.

Mikal Bridges ($7,200) — We could be looking at a breakout season from Bridges. He was stellar against the Kings on Sunday, posting 36.3 DKFP across 36 minutes. He made four three-pointers in that contest and has attempted at least five three-pointers in all three games so far. If that trend were to continue, it would mean a significant increase over the 2.7 three-point attempts per game that he averaged last season. Defenses can’t focus on him with all of the other offensive firepower that the Suns have, so Bridges could continue to be productive.

Josh Hart ($5,200) — Despite a new coaching staff in New Orleans, it looks like Hart will once again remain one of the key contributors off the bench for the Pelicans. He’s played at least 27 minutes in all three games this season and is coming off of a double-double against the Spurs on Sunday. His rebounding prowess in that game was no fluke given that he averaged 6.5 rebounds in 27 minutes per game last season.


Deandre Ayton ($8,400) — The Suns relied on Ayton to help pace their offense behind Booker last season, which helped him generate a 23.7 percent usage rate. He’s been quiet out of the gate this season, though, with an 18.2 percent usage rate. Paul can provide more of a scoring punch than last season’s point guard Ricky Rubio did, so there is a chance that Ayton won’t be as productive on the offensive end as we move along. Given his hefty salary, he’s a risky option.

The Outcome

After handling the Raptors in their season opener, the Pelicans have looked ordinary in their last two games, one of which was a lopsided loss to the Heat and the other being a narrow victory over the Spurs. Adding Paul could be the piece that gets the Suns back into the playoffs, and with the way Bridges is playing right now, it’s going to be tough for the Pelicans to earn a win in this matchup.

Final Score: Suns 116, Pelicans 110

Set your DraftKings fantasy basketball lineups here: NBA Showdown $80K Finger Roll [$20K to 1st] (NOP vs PHO)

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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 I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above.

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