There are two games for Sunday’s DraftKings NBA slate, which starts at 3:00 p.m. ET. The Milwaukee Bucks will try to even the series with the Brooklyn Nets at home while the Phoenix Suns have the brooms out ready to sweep the Denver Nuggets away to sunshine and golf. DraftKings Sportsbook has the Nets favored by 2.5 points with the O/U at 228.5, while the Suns are favored by 3.5 points with the O/U at 222.
Let’s break down some of the top studs and values at each position to help you build your DraftKings lineups.
Chris Paul, Phoenix Suns, $7,400 – Paul was priced at $6,500 when this series started. He’s gone for at least 49 DKFP in each of the three games. An argument can be made that the insane shooting efficiency can’t be maintained as he’s converted 56%, 60% and 57% of his field-goal attempts. That said, while some regression could be in store, he was a 49% shooter during the regular season. In addition, he has averaged 1.21 DKFP per minute on the season and has played 37, 31 and 36 minutes so he’s still too cheap. Paul has grabbed at least five rebounds in each game and dished out 8, 15 and 11 assists.
Other Options – Kyrie Irving ($9,300)
Monte Morris, Denver Nuggets vs. Phoenix Suns, $5,300 – It’s been whack-a-mole between Facundo Campazzo ($4,300) and Morris for me in this series so if you Costanza me, I’d completely understand. I initially thought the offensive prowess of Morris would have the upper hand, but he played 23 and 22 minutes in the first two games and shot 14% and 10% from the field. Campazzo played 36 and 29 minutes, contributing 32 and 13 DKFP. Then in Game 3, Morris played 30 minutes while Campazzo played 18. Morris finally shot the ball well, converting 66% of his attempts. A similar thing happened in the Portland series as Morris garnered more minutes as the series went on. His offensive prowess is needed and he has more DKFP upside, as he’s gone for over 40 DKFP in these playoffs. I initially wanted to go with the cheaper Campazzo but I cannot get away from the upside of Morris.
Other Options – Cameron Payne ($4,100)
Khris Middleton, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Brooklyn Nets, $7,600 – It’s a toss-up between Middleton and Devin Booker ($8,100) for me. Booker has the higher ceiling but I went with Middleton because he is $500 cheaper and he is going to be more needed if that makes sense. While I expect the Nuggets to play with desperation in an elimination game, the Suns have won each game by double-digits and there are scenarios in which Booker can kind of coast. Booker only attempted 14 and 12 shots in the first two games. Middleton, on the other hand, has attempted at least 20 shots in every game and garnered a usage rate of 28%, 34% and 32%. He is so vital to the Bucks’ offense because he can create his own shot.
Other Options – Kyrie Irving ($9,300), Devin Booker ($8,100)
Will Barton, Denver Nuggets, $5,000 – After missing 20 games, Barton returned in Game 2 and played 16 minutes, contributing 18.75 DKFP. In Game 3, the minutes spiked up to 28 and he put up 27.25 DKFP. He attempted 14 shots with seven of those from beyond the arc. In an elimination game, I’d expect 30 or more minutes for Barton.
Kevin Durant, Brooklyn Nets at Milwaukee Bucks, $10,300 – Durant is so freaking good. He can get his shot off against anyone and stuffs the stat sheet, but it’s the consistency that really amazes. In these playoffs, his low was a 40.5 DKFP performance against the Celtics. He’s gone for at least 50 DKFP in every other game with three above 60. He’s converted less than 50% of his shot attempts in only three of eight games. He’s about as safe as the FDIC.
Other Options – Khris Middleton ($7,600)
Bruce Brown, Brooklyn Nets at Milwaukee Bucks, $4,700 – With no James Harden, Brown has been starting at small forward. He’s played 21, 26 and 38 minutes in this series. He usually makes his hay on the glass but he’s dished out at least three assists in every game and has attempted 17 and 10 shots in the past two games. With defenses focused on the other players, it’s been Brown who has been cutting into the middle of the paint and getting a bunch of cheapies. The playing time is stable due to his versatility on defense as he can switch everything. Despite being a low usage player, he’s scored at least 20 DKFP in each of the six games and went for 35.25 DKFP in the most recent game.
Other Options – Jae Crowder ($4,600), Will Barton ($5,000), Mikal Bridges ($5,200), Cameron Johnson ($3,400)
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Brooklyn Nets, $10,800 – The poor shooting from the free-throw line and beyond the arc really hinders Giannis. That said, he does contribute in so many areas and can pop off on any given night. I prefer Durant due to the consistency and $500 price savings, but Giannis can Hulk Smash at any time and did average 1.63 DKFP per minute during the season. He’s gone for 53, 39.75 and 57.75 DKFP in the first three games of this series.
Other Options – Kevin Durant ($10,300)
Dario Saric, Phoenix Suns at Denver Nuggets, $3,100 – Saric has only played nine, 16 and 10 minutes in this series. He’s gone for 9.5, 15.5 and 15 DKFP, though. He can shoot from downtown and grab rebounds. He’s $100 above the minimum and could unlock higher-priced players while providing a modicum of upside without being a complete zero.
Other Options – Blake Griffin ($5,100), Paul Millsap ($3,300), Cameron Johnson ($3,400), Jae Crowder ($4,600)
Nikola Jokic, Denver Nuggets vs. Phoenix Suns, $10,600 – While Durant is the most consistent player on the slate and has the highest floor, Jokic may have the best floor/ceiling combo. He can triple-double on any given night and has gone for over 77 DKFP in two games these playoffs. In Game 3 against the Suns, he went for 32 points, 20 rebounds, 10 assists and one block. If the Nuggets are going to extend this series, a similar output will be needed.
Other Options – Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,800)
Brook Lopez, Milwaukee Bucks vs. Brooklyn Nets, $4,400 – Lopez had a whopping six blocks in Game 3. While he does protect the paint, that kind of output can’t be expected. In addition, he grabbed 11 rebounds. That’s more outlier as well. During the regular season, Lopez hauled in double-digit rebounds just four times. He’s always been known more for blocking out his man and letting teammates grab the rebounds. He also played 35 minutes, only the second time playing over 30 minutes in these playoffs. The more I’m writing, the more I’m convincing myself not to use Lopez. That said, he only shot 1-for-7 from the field. He had attempted at least 10 shots in every other playoff game but one. He’s scored at least 20 DKFP in each of the past five games with a high of 38. The price seems fair for the potential upside.
Other Options – Blake Griffin ($5,100), Dario Saric ($3,100), Paul Millsap ($3,300)
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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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