WATCH: NBA RECAP – BUDDY HIELD
Here are the best and worst matchups at each position for a rare three-game Monday slate. Be sure to monitor injury and lineup news leading up to lock. Hit me up on Twitter with comments or questions: @julianedlow.
Defense vs. Position
Point Guard Matchups
BEST – Russell Westbrook ($13,000) vs. Chicago Bulls – Nearly double the cost of any other PG on the slate, Westbrook has finally reached $13k thanks to three consecutive games with 70+ DKFP. The Bulls have been allowing a league-worst 73 DKFP to PGs over their last five games. Even on a typical 10-game slate, it would be hard to not recommend Russ in this spot.
WORST – Ricky Rubio ($5,400) vs. Dallas Mavericks – The Mavericks have been the NBA’s top ranked team vs. PGs this season, ranking just above the likes of the Jazz and Grizzlies. Rubio has failed to reach value in three of his last four games, so he’s riding a bit of a cold streak entering a tough matchup.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – Buddy Hield ($4,400) vs. New York Knicks – There are some higher priced options I don’t mind, but you’re going to have to save salary somewhere if you’re playing Westbrook tonight. The Knicks rank just 27th in the league vs. SGs, and Hield has been playing more minutes over his last six games, topping 30 DKFP in two of his last three.
WORST – Victor Oladipo ($6,300) vs. Chicago Bulls – Although they’ve been struggling more than any team in the league against PGs, their defense vs. SGs has remained strong. Oladipo was a nice value when he returned from injury at under $6,000 and scored over 30 DKFP a few times, but at his current price, even if he scored his season average (28.7 DKFP) in a difficult matchup, I still don’t think he would be worth his salary.
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – Carmelo Anthony ($7,200) vs. New Orleans Pelicans – The Pelicans have actually been solid vs. SFs this season, ranking in the top-10. However, Anthony’s salary has returned to normal after a poor performance vs. IND, having been hot prior. He torched the Bucks for 60.75 and 53.0 DKFP games last week, and scored 48.75 DKFP against New Orleans two weeks ago.
WORST – Andrew Wiggins ($6,500) vs. Dallas Mavericks – Dallas is the highest ranked team vs. SFs on the slate at sixth overall in the league. Despite a high ceiling, Wiggins has also been really inconsistent while failing to reach value in three of his last four games. This isn’t an ideal bounce back situation for him.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – Kristaps Porzingis ($7,400) vs. New Orleans Pelicans – Whether you want to pair ‘Melo and ‘Staps is up to you, but in his last game before missing time with an Achillies injury, Porzingis did tag the Pelicans for 50 DKFP, so he and Anthony can both have big nights. Since his return, Porzingis is averaging 36.75 DKFP in 32 minutes of play.
WORST – Harrison Barnes ($6,400) vs. Minnesota Timberwolves – Barnes will square off with a T-Wolves team that’s been improving a lot lately in shutting down front court players. They rank 10th vs. PFs this season, but are allowing just 39 DKFP to the position over the last five games, which ranks fourth. Failing to reach value in back-to-back games, Barnes could struggle.
BEST – Anthony Davis ($11,100) vs. New York Knicks – The Knicks continue to get owned in the paint, allowing over 60 DKFP to centers. Although Davis will rotate around in the front court, he should spend most of his time attacking the Knicks right where it hurts. With 15+ boards in each of his last four games, Davis is a nightmare matchup for NYK.
WORST – Robin Lopez ($3,900) vs. Oklahoma City Thunder – The Thunder are the top ranked team vs. centers on the slate, coming in at sixth overall. Lopez has been brutal lately, scoring 17.25 or less DKFP in each of his last three games. Even with three games, I think there are much better options, even if you can’t afford AD.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
Russell Westbrook ($13,000) – No surprise here, although the price is indeed steep. A three-game slate is the perfect time to pay up for a stud like Russ, especially when he finds himself in such a fantastic matchup.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Andre Roberson ($3,900) – With some tough SF matchups, Roberson could be another option to save some salary. In his past two games he’s played at least 36 minutes and scored 26+ DKFP. A matchup with Jimmy Butler (Butler is questionable, so check back closer to game-time) should keep Roberson on the floor a lot tonight, giving him an opportunity to stay hot.
Next Man Up
Jerian Grant ($3,100) – There isn’t any major injury news on this slate, so let’s key in on the Bulls’ PG rotation. With Rondo out of the loop, Grant is backing up Michael Carter-Williams, and has played 20+ minutes in three consecutive games. Having scored between 14.0 and 29.75 DKFP in each of those games, there is some risk for a shot at a ceiling of nearly 10X. OKC struggles against PGs, so Grant has a chance to be another great value tonight.
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.