Here are some plays that jump out on DraftKings at each position for Wednesday’s 11-game NBA slate, along with some strategies unique to this slate.
Worth Paying Up For: Russell Westbrook, Washington Wizards at Sacramento Kings ($11,000)
Westbrook is averaging 1.49 DKFP per minute on the season. Over the last 10 games, he’s scored at least 50.0 DKFP in each game, with five of those over 60.0 DKFP and a 94.5-DKFP explosion against the Pistons. This game has the highest total on the slate with the Wizards slightly favored. Washington is first in offensive pace while the Kings are ninth. Wwashington is 26th in defensive efficiency while the Kings are dead-last. This should be a track meet with plenty of opportunities for fantasy goodies. Westbrook last faced the Kings on Mar. 17 and put up 62.5 DKFP.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Malachi Flynn, Toronto Raptors vs. San Antonio Spurs ($5,500)
Kyle Lowry, Fred VanVleet and Gary Trent Jr. are all out today. That means Flynn will make his fourth start of the season and should see an uptick in usage rate. In the three prior starts, he averaged 36.6 minutes, 17 points, 3.7 three-pointers, 3.3 rebounds, 7.3 assists and two steals, which translated to 39.75 DKFP, 44.0 DKFP and 29.25 DKFP. His usage rate in those games was 20%, 22% and 23%, respectively.
Worth Paying Up For: Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls vs. Orlando Magic ($8,800)
LaVine has been on quite the heater recently, as he’s gone for 42.5 DKFP, 51.25 DKFP, 69.5 DKFP and 57.0 DKFP in the last four games. He’s averaged 37.1 minutes and 22.3 shot attempts, while garnering a usage rate of 33.4%. Now he gets a matchup against a Magic team that boosts the fantasy point per minute to shooting guards by 3.57% above league average. He also faced the Magic twice in early February and put up 45.0 DKFP and 55.25 DKFP.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Rodney Hood, Toronto Raptors vs. San Antonio Spurs ($3,100)
I like how the algorithm priced him $100 above the minimum. That’s respect. As mentioned in the Flynn section, the Raptors backcourt is depleted today, so Hood will likely start and play as many minutes as he can handle. His high on the season is 34 minutes, which he reached in consecutive games back in early February. On the season, Hood is averaging only 0.58 DKFP per minute, so this isn’t a smash play. In those two games that he played 34 minutes, Hood produced 28.75 DKFP and 8.25 DKFP, so the range out outcomes is wide. However, he should be able to pay off his salary with a chance for upside.
Worth Paying Up For: DeMar DeRozan, San Antonio Spurs at Toronto Raptors ($7,900)
It’s hard going against Luka Doncic ($10,900), but he’s just been Luka lately, instead of HalleLuka. Over the past eight games, he’s scored at least 40.0 DKFP in each game, but hasn’t gone over 56.0 DKFP in any. That’s a fine output, but at that price, you want the chance for ceiling games. Could it happen? Sure, on any given night, Luka can go bonkers, but considering his recent form, I’m looking to spend up for Westbrook. Which brings me to DeRozan, who is $3,000 cheaper and could match the output of Doncic. He won’t access the ceiling that Doncic is capable of, yet this play is predicated on Doncic continuing to be good, not great. Over the last three games, DeRozan has gone for 30.0 DKFP, 50.25 DKFP and 47.75 DKFP. He only played 26 minutes in the 30.0 DKFP game due to a blowout.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Moe Harkless, Sacramento Kings vs. Washington Wizards ($3,700)
Harkless has started the past three games. He played 20 minutes in the first one, but then received 31 and 34 minutes in the most recent games. He put up 29.5 DKFP and 30.25 DKFP in those contests. Harkless is a low-usage player, so he won’t score many points, but he will knock down three-pointers, grab rebounds and derive most of his value from contributions in the defensive categories. This game should fly up and down with plenty of offensive possessions, so Harkless should have plenty of chances to accumulate fantasy points.
Worth Paying Up For: Julius Randle, New York Knicks at New Orleans Pelicans ($9,500)
Randle and Zion Williamson ($9,900) are at the top of the power forward pool today and play against each other. Insert Spiderman meme. I’m good with either one, but I lean towards Randle due to the $400 savings and matchup. The Knicks are third in defensive efficiency, while the Pelicans are 28th. Zion doesn’t worry about matchups, but I’d rather travel the road with the least resistance as the Pelicans boost the fantasy points per minute to power forwards by 4.36% above league average. Over the last eight games, Randle has put up at least 40.0 DKFP, with two above 50.0 DKFP and one 61.75 DKFP performance against the Nets.
Best Bang For Your Buck: Jalen McDaniels, Charlotte Hornets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers ($4,700)
McDaniels has stepped into the starting lineup for Gordon Hayward. In those four games, he’s averaged 33 minutes, 11.0 shot attempts and garnered a usage rates of 15%, 12%, 18% and 18%. He’s scored 38.5 DKFP, 40.5 DKFP, 20.25 DKFP and 31.5 DKFP over that span. Now he gets a matchup against Dean Wade ($5,200) and the Cavaliers, who boost the fantasy point per minute to small forwards by 7.02% above league average.
Worth Paying Up For: Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers vs. Brooklyn Nets ($10,000)
There some good options at center tonight. Nikola Jokic ($10,600) is always in consideration, while Nikola Vucevic ($9,200) has a — wait for it — revenge game against the Magic. I’m kidding about the revenge narrative, by the way. I’m going with Embiid, though, because he averages an insane 1.62 DKFP per minute and now faces a Nets team that is 13th in pace and 19th in defensive efficiency. They also boost the fantasy point per minute to centers by 4.08% above league average. He should have his way with Nicolas Claxton ($3,100).
Best Bang For Your Buck: Bismack Biyombo, Charlotte Hornets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers ($3,200)
P.J. Washington is out, which is big because he plays a ton of small-ball center. Cody Zeller ($4,800) has played over 20 minutes in only five of the last 11 games. With Washington out last game, Biyombo got the start and played 28 minutes. He contributed 29.5 DKFP. On the season, Biyombo averages 0.77 DKFP per minute, but he’s almost priced at the minimum, so he shouldn’t have a problem exceeding his salary.
Overall Lineup Strategy
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There is a ton of value tonight, especially with the news that Kevin Durant, James Harden, Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge are out for the Nets. The Wizards-Kings game is the juiciest environment on the slate, but I’m going to be watching ownership projections closely, because if they get too high, then there are plenty of options to pivot on a slate this big. Pacers-Rockets has the second-highest total on the slate, with both teams top 10 in offensive place, and that is a game that could go overlooked.
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is sontzu) 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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