Monday brings us just a seven-game slate, but it doesn’t lack the usual amount of juicy matchups. The Cheat Sheet will do its best to provide you with the best and worst matchup focusing on statistics at each position.
Be sure to check in on the DK Live app throughout the day to monitor injury and lineup news. Another great way to help build your lineup is to tune in to DKTV at 6 PM EST for Pre Lock Live — a one hour show that will keep you posted on up to the minute news along with plenty of analysis.
Hit me up on Twitter with comments or questions: @julianedlow.
Defense vs. Position
Point Guard Matchups
BEST – Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,700) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers – Per usual, the Greek Freak is both PG and SF eligible, making him even more valuable since he allows you to fit even more PGs in your lineup. The Cavs rank in the bottom-five defensively at both positions, and are allowing an average of 64 DKFP to PGs over the past 10 games. If you slot him in at a forward spot, it gives you room to fit guys like Isaiah Thomas ($8,700) and Steph Curry ($9,900). Keep in mind Khris Middleton is resting tonight, so Giannis could see more minutes.
WORST – Goran Dragic ($6,800) vs. Dallas Mavericks – Dallas ranks as the NBA’s best team vs. PGs this season. Allowing an average of just 46.8 DKFP to PGs this season, Dallas is more than two points better than any other team.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – DeMar DeRozan ($8,900) vs. New York Knicks – With Kyle Lowry out of the lineup the last two games, DeRozan has been practically must-play (he’s scored 55.75 and 47.5 DKFP in those games). If Lowry remains sidelined on Monday, DeRozan is in a good position to continue his hot streak against the Knicks — who rank seventh-worst against SGs. It’s also worth noting that James Harden ($12,000) is eligible at both guard positions (PG/SG) once again. He faces a Pacers team that ranks in the bottom 10 vs. guards.
WORST – Seth Curry ($5,700) vs. Miami Heat – Curry’s been hot lately, but overall, very inconsistent on the season. Miami’s done a fantastic job limiting production from guards this season, especially SGs — ranking third in the NBA. Curry’s minutes help make him a much safer play, but this matchup is not favorable.
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – Andrew Wiggins ($8,200) vs. Sacramento Kings – Wiggins has been stepping up big-time on the wing since Zach LaVine went down, and his salary reflects that. However, Wiggins has still exceeded value in eight of his last nine games (missing by just about one DKFP in his last game). The Kings are allowing an average of over 50 DKFP to SFs in the past five games, which makes Wiggins a pretty attractive play here.
WORST – Robert Covington ($7,300) vs. Golden State Warriors – I’m going a bit bold here going against Covington, but remember this is all about the matchup. Covington was playing really well prior to the break, and he’s been a monster since Philly cleared some players from the roster. He’s averaging over 50 DKFP in two games since the ASG. However, the Warriors rank seventh in the league against SFs, and should be getting Kevin Durant back. GSW has the weapons to slow Covington down, and there’s plenty of blowout potential in this game to keep RoCo from seeing the floor late in the game. Considering his salary is up $1,000 since Friday, there’s plenty of cause for concern here.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – Paul Millsap ($7,200) vs. Boston Celtics – Millsap’s been cold over the last few games, but that’s only brought his salary down. His upside remains the same, and the Celtics are exactly the kind of team he has the potential to dominate. Boston has a glaring hole at PF, and ranks as the ninth-worst team covering the position this season.
WORST – Draymond Green ($7,700) vs. Philadelphia 76ers – For starters, the 76ers shockingly rank as the seventh-best team vs. PFs this season. But just as much as the matchup factors in here, Green just hasn’t been putting up any numbers lately. Just scroll through his recent game log and you’ll see he’s been struggling to put up 20 DKFP.
BEST – Myles Turner ($6,100) vs. Houston Rockets – Houston ranks just 28th in the league against centers this season, and is allowing a whopping 66.6 DKFP to the position over the last five games on average. Turner’s topped 32 DKFP in three straight games, including some tough matchups. This appears to be a matchup that Turner should thrive in.
WORST – Al Horford ($5,900) vs. Atlanta Hawks – Horford is helping the Celtics win games, but he’s been a bust statistically. His old team defends bigs well, as his replacement in Dwight Howard has ATL ranked fourth against centers. Horford posted just a 10-6-6 line against his former team the first time around.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
UPDATE: LeBron James WILL PLAY tonight for the Cavaliers.
Kyrie Irving ($9,000) – LeBron James ($10,900) is questionable after missing one game already with an illness. Kyrie dropped 57.75 DKFP in that game — so if LeBron is forced out again, Kyrie makes a ton of sense. Irving and DeRozan is a fantastic core if their co-stars remain sidelined.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Skal Labissiere ($3,400) – The names that come to mind when replacing DeMarcus Cousins have been Willy Cauley-Stein ($5,100) and Kosta Koufus ($3,800), but Labissiere has been holding his own. Skal is averaging 23.75 DKFP in two games since Boogie has departed.
Next Man Up
Cavs’ Wings – Kyle Korver ($4,800) is questionable along with LeBron, so plenty of value could open up on the perimeter for the Cavs. Lowry and LeBron are the big injuries to watch for Kyrie and DeRozan’s usage, though. This looks like a slate that you’re going to have to keep an eye on to see where the value comes from, but it will be there.
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.