As the nights wind down in October, the most enjoyable stretch of the year to be a sports fan will be coming to a close sometime in the next two days. We’ve had a full week to savor the brief point in the sporting calendar where all four major North American schedules overlap, culminating in a jam-packed Sunday, which was the lone day in 2019 that featured at least one hockey game, one basketball game, one football game and one baseball game. Still, less World Series eventually will mean more time to focus on your NBA DFS lineups. Until then, we’ve got a three-matchup slate going head-to-head with Game 6 of Astros-Nationals.
Let’s break down the basketball-half of tonight’s action.
StudTrae Young, ATL at MIA, $9,000 – Young didn’t hit 7x value for the first time this season in last night’s 105-103 loss to Philadelphia. Still, he did take 20 shots, score 25 points and hand out nine assists against a team with a daunting 96.8 defensive rating. Look, I’m not going to lie to you; utilizing a man averaging 34.0 points per game with an insane 37.9% usage rate isn’t going to differentiate your lineups this evening. However, facing a Heat team that owns the league’s highest pace and being part of the contest with easily the slate’s game total (O/U 225.5), it feels like not having Young is something that immediately can ruin your chances for profit. Other Option: Ja Morant ($7,100)
ValueTyus Jones, MEM at LAL, $4,100 – Jones is in a nice spot to see a little normalization. After scoring 29.75 DKFP on 6-of-12 shooting in Memphis’ first game of the new season, the back-up point guard has been mired in a 2-for-15 shooting slump. Still, at his price point, the most encouraging trend is the shot volume, not the shot efficiency. Jones actually owns the fourth-highest usage rate of any player on the Grizzlies’ roster (23.6%), and he’s yet to see fewer than 20 minutes in a matchup. Combine all that with a respectable 32.2% assist rate and the fact Memphis runs at the West’s fastest pace, and you’re left with a high-ceiling option for around $4K.
Other Option: Malik Beasley ($3,300)
StudLuka Doncic, DAL at DEN, $9,500 – Denver’s not exactly an ideal matchup — the team owns the league’s slowest pace and has allowed just 100.3 points per 100 possessions — but nothing is going to scare me away from Doncic at this point. Where we got a glimpse of what a high-usage Doncic could look like following the Dennis Smith Jr. trade last season, the reigning Rookie of the Year has taken things to a whole new level through the first three games of 2019-20. Not only is Doncic leading the NBA in touches per game (108.0), he’s doing so with a .624 true shooting percentage and while averaging 10.3 rebounds and 7.3 assists per night. My rule last year was always play Doncic when his salary was below $9K. I think I’ll be changing that philosophy to $10K.
ValueDillon Brooks, MEM at LAL, $4,100 – You want cheap volume? How about a player who has logged 68 minutes and taken 27 shots in his past two games despite committing 11 fouls within that span? Sounds like an incredibly high floor to me. Brooks clearly has been given the green light to hoist at his heart’s desire by the Grizzlies’ new coaching staff, and that makes him a very intriguing value piece on this evening’s small slate. He only becomes more appealing if Kyle Anderson ($3,700) is ruled out of tonight’s matchup against the Lakers with a calf injury.
Other Option: Delon Wright ($5,000)
StudJustise Winslow, MIA vs. ATL, $6,900 – While you’d be justified in being somewhat fearful of how Jimmy Butler’s ($7,700) return will affect Winslow’s production, it would appear the 23-year-old’s floor will remain rather high. He simply checks every box when it comes to volume. Winslow is the NBA’s lone player averaging more than 40 minutes per game, he sits sixth in the league in touches per night (92.3), and he leads the entire Heat roster in field goal attempts (54). Yes, some of that obviously will taper off with a high-usage option like Butler back in the mix, but the point is Winslow has a long way to fall before he’s no longer viable. The fact Miami operates at the NBA’s fastest pace (109.5) doesn’t hurt matters, either.
ValueWill Barton, DEN vs. DAL, $4,600 – To be blunt, Barton is the kind of player that will drive you crazy. There’s really no way in knowing which nights he’s going to explode and which nights he just doesn’t have it. Still, we’ve seen more good than bad so far in 2019-20, and a three-game slate is the type of situation where I like taking a chance with inconsistent assets like him. At the end of the day, he’s fourth on the Nuggets in total minutes and he’s averaged just under a full DKFP per 60 seconds of action (0.98). If he simply can log his normal allotment of playing time this evening, he should have no trouble hitting 5x value — as he’s done in two of three contests this year.
Other Option: Jae Crowder ($5,200)
StudAnthony Davis, LAL vs. MEM, $10,300 – He’s the highest-priced player on the slate, but, coming off his best performance of the young season, that makes a lot of sense with Davis’ matchup. As we’ve discussed, Memphis operates at a fast pace. To be exact, it runs 108.6 possessions per 48 minutes. This creates a lot of volume of both sides of the ball. Not only do the Grizzlies allow the fourth-most points per game (121.0), but they do so while simultaneously surrendering a whopping 47.9 opponent rebounds a night. They also have been a turnstile for big men looking to score at the basket, as they’ve conceded 34.7 field goal attempts per contest in the restricted area — shots that are being finished at an above-average 63.5% rate. Davis is going to do big things. Other Option: John Collins ($7,300)
ValueMaxi Kleber, DAL at DEN, $3,700 – You are going to avoid Kleber if Dwight Powell ($5,500) makes his 2019-20 debut in tonight’s contest, but, if not, Kleber’s been outstanding his past two games. After being almost invisible in Dallas’ opening matchup of the year against Washington, the German big man has hit 6x value the past two times he’s taken the court and averaged a respectable 0.91 DKFP per minute logged. He’s not likely to exceed 30 fantasy points, but Kleber’s a solid rebounder with a near-elite block rate that can makes a few 3s. What more could you ask for below $4K?
Other Option: De’Andre Hunter ($4,700)
StudBam Adebayo, MIA vs. ATL, $7,000 – It’s early in the season, but here’s the full list of players averaging 15 points, 10 rebounds and five assists per game: Giannis Antetokounmpo, Russell Westbrook, Nikola Jokic, Karl-Anthony Towns, Luka Doncic and Adebayo. That’s everybody. Sure, Adebayo’s scoring is lagging well behind most of those All-Stars, but he’s had an incredible start to this third professional season. He also is posting an impressive 1.26 DKFP per minute played through three contests. Adebayo isn’t going to be completely immune to the return of Butler, yet he feels like a fair price in what should be the slate’s highest scoring affair. Other Option: Kristaps Porzingis ($8,200)
ValueDwight Howard, LAL vs. MEM, $5,000 – Howard pretty clearly has become Frank Vogel’s preferred choice at center. Across the Lakers’ past two games, Howard’s played 42 minutes, while JaVale McGee ($3,700) has been limited to just 28. Actually, the man once known as “Superman” has seen more run than McGee in every single matchup of 2019-20. I’m in no way expecting Howard to produce like he did against Charlotte on every single night, but he should have a decent opportunity against the soft interior of the Grizzlies. Plus, he was on Memphis for like six weeks this summer, so, well, it’s another revenge game, right?
Other Option: Bruno Fernando ($3,200)
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is theglt13) 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.