Eight-game slate here on Wednesday night, featuring some games with serious playoff implications. I will do my best to provide you with the best and worst matchups focusing on statistics at each position, plus some bonus lineup building picks.
Be sure to check in on the DK Live app throughout the day to monitor injury and lineup news. Hit me up on Twitter with comments or questions: @julianedlow.
Defense vs. Position
Point Guard Matchups
BEST – Stephen Curry ($10,000) vs. Phoenix Suns – The Suns are giving up 62.5 total DKFP to PGs in their last five games on average. Curry’s scored 45+ DKFP in seven consecutive games, including four with 55+. Kevin Durant is still sidelined, while Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala are scheduled to rest tonight. Steph should be running the show.
WORST – Chris Paul ($8,400) vs. Dallas Mavericks – Paul has been thriving in his last three games, but it’s come against opponents who’ve been struggling to defend PGs recently. Paul was in a funk prior to that, including just 36 DKFP against Dallas — who rank first in the NBA in DKFP allowed to PGs this season.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – James Harden ($12,500) vs. Denver Nuggets – Denver ranks last in the league defending both guard positions, which leaves Harden in the perfect spot. Although he’s shot the ball horribly in his last two games, Harden’s now had four full days of rest entering a home game against the Nuggets — who he dropped 72.75 DKFP on just a couple of weeks ago.
WORST – Nicolas Batum ($6,800) vs. Miami Heat – Batum’s just hard to trust in general with Kemba running the show. He’s failed to score 30 DKFP in 7 of his last 10 games, and Miami has allowed a league-low 38.7 total DKFP to SGs on average this season.
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – LeBron James ($10,200) vs. Boston Celtics – The Celtics rank dead last in DKFP surrendered to SF over their past five games on average — 57.2 total. Jay Crowder is expected to play but will be banged up going against LeBron. James put up a triple-double the last time he played in the Garden, as he also did last night, and he should have plenty of motivation in this game.
WORST – Brandon Ingram ($4,200) vs. San Antonio Spurs – Yay, Ingram’s minutes restriction has been lifted! Now he can get manhandled by Kawhi Leonard for even longer tonight. I get that he’s cheap, but this might not be a spot you want to use the rookie on this slate.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – LaMarcus Aldridge ($6,700) vs. Los Angeles Lakers – LMA did play 41 minutes last night, so just be aware of that. But the Lakers are getting smoked for a league-worst 51.6 total DKFP per game by PFs this season. The appeal in this matchup is obvious.
WORST – Julius Randle ($6,000) vs. San Antonio Spurs – Things are much different on the opposite side of this matchup. The Spurs rank second in DFKP given up to PFs this season at just 43.3 total. Randle actually had a good game against Memphis on Sunday, which was encouraging. But he’s been so inconsistent that it’s hard to feel good about him doing it again going up against such stiff competition.
BEST – Clint Capela ($5,800) vs. Denver Nuggets – The Sixers are off tonight, so I’m going to have to figure something out here. Opposing centers are averaging 62.8 total DKFP against the Nuggets over the last five games. These two teams have played twice recently, and Capela posted 30 and 33.25 DKFP, so he’s a great candidate to exceed 5X value.
WORST – Andre Drummond ($7,200) vs. Toronto Raptors – Toronto has been playing bigger lately, and it’s working — limiting centers to an average of just 40.9 total DKFP in their last five. Drummond has scored 35 of less DKFP in six straight games entering tonight’s matchup.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
LeBron James ($10,200) – Harden and Curry are tempting with those matchups, but there’s also blowout potential. LeBron would probably be resting tonight in the second game of a back-to-back but is suiting up to go after the 1-seed in Boston instead. He was spectacular in his last game in Boston, a building he typically thrives in and should want to send the C’s a message with the postseason right around the corner. Call it a narrative game, or whatever you want, but LBJ is going to bring his A-game.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Emmanuel Mudiay ($4,100) – Mudiay’s been forced into Denver’s rotation lately and is playing well. Even if Jameer Nelson returns, Mudiay could still have a role in the Nuggets’ backcourt. He’s averaging more than 31 DKFP in his last two games, and Houston is getting dominated for an insane 72.1 total DKFP average by PGs over its past five.
Next Man Up
Warriors’ Forwards – No KD, no Draymond and no Iggy. Steph and Klay should be hoisting against the Suns tonight, but somebody has to play forward. I don’t mind taking a flier on any of these guys: Matt Barnes ($3,400), Ian Clark ($3,000), Shaun Livingston ($3,000), Patrick McCaw ($3,000) or David West ($3,000).
Plenty of injury news is sure to open up lots of value, so make sure you check the DK Live app prior to lock for all the latest breaking news regarding injuries, lineups and analysis.
I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is jedlow) 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.