We’re a week into the NBA regular season and starting to get a good idea of where most teams want to go with their rotations and playing time allotments. The DraftKings salaries for improved players in larger roles are also adjusting, leaving fewer bargain values than there were the first few days of the season. As the season progresses, there is always key injury news to monitor that opens up more value later in the day, so be sure to follow @dklive on Twitter and download the DK Live app.
On Wednesday, there are 10 games on the main slate, giving us 20 teams and 100 players in the starting lineups across the Association. You’ll need to find just the right superstars to blend with some cheaper plays to maximize both the potential and the reliability of your roster. To help you find the best cheaper options, check out my bargain plays every Monday, Wednesday and Friday here on DraftKings Playbook. I highlight four players who are set to outproduce their salaries based on form, matchup and expected workload, so let’s get right to today’s picks.
SF Desmond Bane, Memphis Grizzlies at Portland Trail Blazers, $4,800
In his second season, Bane has shown remarkable consistency over the first three games for the Grizz and looks ready to make the step to the next level. Whether it’s the anonymity of playing in Memphis or the uncertainty in past rotations, Bane’s salary has been slow to react to his increased production. In each of his three games this season, he has started and played at least 30 minutes with a usage rate over 20%. He produced a remarkably consistent 33.75, 33 and 33.75 DKFP in those three games, which would still make him a very good bargain play under $5K if he’s around that number again in this one.
Bane has averaged 19.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.3 steals per contest and gets a favorable matchup against the Trail Blazers, who have allowed 115 points per game, putting them in the bottom 10 of the NBA. Portland plays at the fastest pace of any team in the NBA, so there should be plenty of opportunities for Bane and the Grizzlies to be fantasy stars in the late game on national TV.
SG Malik Monk, Los Angeles Lakers at Oklahoma City Thunder, $3,700
The Lakers and Thunder are the only two teams on the slate on the second night of back-to-back games, so Monk’s big Tuesday night performance isn’t figured into this salary. He stepped up for the Lakers while LeBron James ($9,500; ankle, questionable) was out and went off for 17 points and 26.75 DKFP in 39 minutes after averaging only 19 minutes in his first three games of the season. While James could return, Anthony Davis ($9,700; knee, questionable) is also dealing with an injury, and there’s also a good chance that this game gets lopsided, creating garbage time in which Monk could carry a bigger role.
Even before his big game Tuesday, Monk deserved bargain consideration after 23.75 DKFP in 21 minutes against Memphis on Sunday. He’s an aggressive shooter and scorer who brings a high ceiling and has been chipping in solid assist production as well. If he starts again, he’s a must-play under $4K, but even if he’s coming off the bench, I think he’ll be able to continue to establish himself as a nice complimentary piece in the Lakers’ rotation.
PG Davion Mitchell, Sacramento Kings at Phoenix Suns, $4,200
I’ve been in on Mitchell since Day 1 of the season (receipts), and the rookie broke through on the offensive end with 22 points and 29.8 DKFP against the Warriors on Sunday. Mitchell definitely has that kind of upside when his shot is dropping and hopefully is past his early-season mini-slump (2-for-14 in his first two games).
The reason I love playing Mitchell on DraftKings is that he’s going to get reliable playing time based on his defense and energy. He has played over 30 minutes in each of his two most recent contests and should continue to get that much run off the bench. He has at least three assists in each game and added four steals two games ago against the Jazz, so the No. 9 overall pick brings plenty of potential in other categories in addition to his scoring upside.
C Gorgui Dieng, Atlanta Hawks at New Orleans Pelicans, $3,800
While Clint Capela ($6,500) and John Collins ($6,300) are a solid starting frontcourt for the Hawks, Dieng has been able to provide nice fantasy production off the bench thanks to his outstanding work on the glass. In his three games, the 31-year-old big man has averaged 8.7 boards in just 16.2 minutes per contest. He doesn’t shoot a ton but has been an efficient 8-for-13 from the field and 3-of-4 from long range.
Even though he doesn’t typically go off for a huge number, the veteran knows his role and plays it very well with the second unit, averaging 1.4 DKFP per minute so far this season. Dieng will likely spend most of his time in the second unit matched up against Jaxson Hayes ($3,700), which is a matchup that should result in solid value at this salary.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jetsfan196) 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. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.
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