It’s St. Patrick’s Day, and we’ve got a nice eight-game slate on tap tonight. I’ll do my best to provide you with the best and worst matchup 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. Another great way to help build your lineup is to tune into 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 – Marcus Smart ($4,900) vs. Brooklyn Nets – Talk about an ideal situation for Smart. Brooklyn ranks last in the NBA in DKFP allowed to PGs (56.4), and Isaiah Thomas is not going to play in this one. Smart should see a ton of minutes running the point, and is priced down at one of his cheapest salaries I can remember.
WORST – D’Angelo Russell ($6,500) vs. Milwaukee Bucks – Russell has struggled significantly since switching over to a bench role, averaging just 17 DKFP in the last two games. With his price still relatively high, and the Bucks ranking third in DKFP allowed to PGs, it’s a very difficult spot for D’Angelo on this slate.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – Avery Bradley ($6,000) vs. Brooklyn Nets – The Celtics’ backcourt is going to be a theme today with such a huge piece missing in such a great matchup. The Nets rank just 28th vs. SGs, and despite playing off the ball, Bradley should take on a big chunk of the scoring role Thomas is typically counted on for. AB is off his minutes restriction and has exceeded value in three straight games.
WORST – DeMar DeRozan ($8,000) vs. Detroit Pistons – Detroit ranks fourth in the league against SGs, but this is more about DeRozan. DD has failed to top 40 DKFP in five of his last six games. Some blowouts have played a factor, but overall DeRozan hasn’t impressed lately.
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – Giannis Antetokounmpo ($9,900) vs. Los Angeles Lakers – The Lakers are pretty brutal against SFs, but the real number we’re looking at here is PGs — where L.A. ranks dead last in the league, yielding nearly 62 total DKFP to the opposition over the past 10 games on average. Outside of the numbers, the Lakers just haven’t been capable of covering regular humans, let alone The Greek Freak. Slotting him in at SF tonight could be the way to go.
WORST – Robert Covington ($6,900) vs. Dallas Mavericks – Much like DeRozan, Covington has his matchup and recent play working against him here. Dallas has allowed the fewest DKFP to SFs this season, but RoCo has also failed to exceed value in four of his last five games. Feels like a bad combination when you have an option like Giannis.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – Marquese Chriss ($5,300) vs. Orlando Magic – Orlando has taken a hit on defense since sliding Aaron Gordon over to PF, surrendering an average of over 60 total DKFP in the team’s last five games. Chriss has played up to his potential at times this season, particularly against the Kings on Wednesday night when he scored 42.25 DKFP. Orlando’s recent history suggests it’ll have its hands full with the ultra-athletic Chriss.
WORST – DeMarcus Cousins ($9,800) vs. Houston Rockets – The Pelicans experiment hasn’t worked so far, and Boogie is learning that this is Anthony Davis’ team. Cousins hasn’t reached 50 DKFP in five consecutive games, while Houston surprisingly ranks above average against PFs. With no glaring bad matchups at this position, it’s worth mentioning the downside Boogie has.
BEST – Nerlens Noel ($5,500) vs. Philadelphia 76ers – Well look what we have here! Not only will Noel be out for revenge against his former squad, but Jahlil Okafor has the Sixers getting dominated by centers without the help of Noel or the injured Joel Embiid. Opposing centers are averaging almost 68 total DKFP in the last 10 games against the center, and Noel should be determined to play his best in this one.
WORST – Jonas Valanciunas ($5,000) vs. Detroit Pistons – The Pistons rank in the top-five against opposing centers this season thanks to Andre Drummond (who is coming off a 14 DKFP game isn’t in the best spot himself tonight). Jonas has been a solid value play lately, but this definitely isn’t an ideal head-to-head matchup for him.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
Giannis Antetokounmpo ($9,900) – Because he’s been playing so poorly, Giannis is far too underpriced for this tilt against the Lakers in my opinion. He could go overlooked due to his recent play, but I think he has a great shot at a bounce-back game.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Terry Rozier ($3,000) – Following up on the IT injury, the C’s will obviously need depth behind Smart and Bradley, and that should start with Rozier. The Louisville product is fully capable of scoring the ball and he’s a fantastic rebounder for his size. At the minimum price, he should be a very popular value play.
Next Man Up
Tyler Ulis ($5,700) – With Eric Bledsoe ruled out for the season, the Phoenix backcourt is going to see a major shakeup. That starts with Ulis, who has been playing fantastic lately. Ulis had a career game on Wednesday, dropping 41.25 DKFP in 39 minutes against the Kings. Look for a lot more of that to finish up the season, with slight bumps in value going to Devin Booker ($7,200), Ronnie Price ($3,000) and potentially Brandon Knight ($3,500) … if he ever returns.
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.