The NBA gives everyone a chance to start the weekend started right with a nice seven-game slate on DraftKings this Friday night. Of the 14 teams taking the court, only the Dallas Mavericks are playing for the second night in a row. There are already plenty of injury issues to monitor, though, so stay locked in for news that opens up more value later in the day by following @dklive on Twitter and downloading the DK Live app.
In this post, we’ll focus on the best bargain plays for this Friday, who are set up to out-perform their affordable salaries based on form, matchup and expected workload. Let’s get right to today’s picks.
PG/SG Anfernee Simons, Portland Trail Blazers vs. Los Angeles Clippers, $3,800
Every year, there seems to be some buzz at some point about how Simons is ready to take his game to the next level as the primary backup for the Blazers’ two superstar guards, Damian Lillard ($9,300) and CJ McCollum ($7,900). While the verdict is still out on how consistent he can be over the long haul, Simons is definitely off to a good start to the season, so don’t let past letdowns turn you off to rolling with Simons at this price while he stays hot.
In each of his four games this season, Simons has scored at least 11 points and produced at least 18 DKFP, averaging 1.04 DKFP per minute. He’s also coming off his best showing of the young season. He played 28 minutes on Wednesday against the Grizzlies, scoring 17 points, hitting five three-pointers and totaling 29.75 DKFP. He normally doesn’t pour it in from long-range like that, but even when he doesn’t, he provides enough production to be worth a look at this salary.
SG/SF Bruce Brown, Brooklyn Nets vs. Indiana Pacers, $3,800
In the first two games of the season, Brown played a total of just four minutes for the Nets, and it looked like he had fallen totally out of the rotation. However, things have definitely shifted since then, and he even started each of the past two games for Brooklyn, logging over 30 minutes in each of those starts.
Brown has averaged 22.8 DKFP in 30.7 minutes over his past three games on 11.3 points, 5.0 rebounds and 1.7 steals per contest. His best fantasy night of the season came Wednesday against the Miami Heat, when he finished with 26.25 DKFP on 12 points, five rebounds and three steals. With Kevin Durant ($10,300) and James Harden ($9,600) on the floor, Brown definitely doesn’t have to carry the offense and won’t get high usage, but his perimeter defense is key, and he should remain a fringe fantasy contributor as long as he keeps getting so many minutes.
PF Jalen McDaniels, Charlotte Hornets at Miami Heat, $3,500
McDaniels has played 22 minutes in each of the Hornets’ two most recent games while helping to fill in for PJ Washington ($5,800; knee, doubtful), who is expected to miss at least one more contest. In those two games, McDaniels had 13 points and 20.75 DKFP against the Celtics followed by a more impressive 33 DKFP on 16 points, four rebounds, three assists, two steals and a block against the Magic. He hit multiple three-pointers in each of those two games and has given the second unit a nice scoring boost while averaging 1.22 DKFP per game.
For as long as Washington is out, McDaniels should keep seeing over 20 minutes on the floor and have a chance to post nice multi-category production. McDaniels’ point production keeps him from being high-risk, but he’s truly at his best when he fills in the other categories as well like he did Wednesday in Orlando.
PF/C Maxi Kleber, Dallas Mavericks at Denver Nuggets, $3,300
Kleber is in the final spot on the list, but not because he’s not a great play, only because he has the lowest salary. Kleber’s ultra-affordable price is due to the fact that the Mavs are on a back-to-back which means it doesn’t reflect his big game Thursday against the Spurs. Kleber stepped up and delivered 12 points, 10 boards and six blocked shots on his way to an enormous 45.0 DKFP—a return of 14.1 DKFP-per-$1K value! He was a chalky play since he was filling in for Kristaps Porzingis ($7,700; back, questionable), but he showed a great ceiling with that performance and should have earned himself more work even if Porzingis returns against the Nuggets.
Throughout his career, Kleber has proven to be a nice fit next to Luke Doncic ($11,000), so after this big game look for coach Jason Kidd to get him more run moving forward. In his three games before Thursday’s breakout, he averaged just 13.6 DKFP in 17.7 minutes per game. While another monster night of value like last night isn’t certain, he doesn’t have to do nearly that much to be a great play with his salary barely more than the minimum.
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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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