WATCH: NBA RECAP – ERSAN ILYASOVA
Just seven games here on Monday night, but we’ve still got some exciting matchups and high priced studs. 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 – Russell Westbrook ($13,300) vs. Golden State Warriors – Forget the matchup on paper with Russ, we know he steps up in big games, and he’s KILLED the Warriors this season. Facing off in February, Westbrook posted a 47-11-8 line, and then back in January he got them for 27-15-13.
WORST – Derrick Rose ($6,100) vs. Los Angeles Clippers – The Clippers rank seventh in the league in DKFP allowed to PGs this season, and they have been extremely consistent with Chris Paul in the lineup. Rose has failed to reach value in his last four games, including two matchups with the Nets — who are the worst team in the league defending his position.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – James Harden ($12,700) vs. Denver Nuggets – The Nuggets rank 29th against guards overall this season, only behind the Nets. Harden is your PG and SG all rolled up into one, as his price tag reflects. Having scored 73+ DKFP in three of his last four (including 73.5 DKFP against Denver on Saturday), Harden is red-hot entering this near perfect matchup.
WORST – Bradley Beal ($7,600) vs. Boston Celtics – The Celtics rank top-10 vs. SGs this season and have improved all the way to fourth in the league in the last 10 games. After catching fire with John Wall for a stretch, Beal’s failed to reach value in his last three games.
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – Will Barton ($7,300) vs. Houston Rockets – Barton’s had a wildly inconsistent season, but he seems to be in a good place right now with a pair of 37+ DKFP games over his last three. Meanwhile, Houston’s surrendered an average of over 56 total DKFP to SFs over the past 10 games.
WORST – Paul George ($8,000) vs. Utah Jazz – Utah and San Antonio have been leaps and bounds ahead of the field when it comes to defending SFs this season. The Jazz are currently in the lead for fewest DKFP allowed to SFs, which isn’t good news for George. PG13 also had a brutal game yesterday with just 27 DKFP against Toronto. This is a tough back-to-back.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – Blake Griffin ($8,100) vs. New York Knicks- None of the obvious teams to target PFs against are playing on this slate, but Griffin seems to be in a good spot against the Knicks — who do rank in the bottom-10 in the league against the position. Griffin’s been inconsistent lately but could be an attractive tournament play with the upside he should have in this game.
WORST – Draymond Green ($7,900) vs. Oklahoma City Thunder – OKC has ranked highly against PFs all season, and is currently allowing less than 40 total DKFP over the last five games on average. In his last game against the Thunder, Draymond posted just 6-8-8, so why not go with a guy like Griffin for nearly the same price?
BEST – Nikola Vucevic ($7,700) vs. Philadelphia 76ers – Philly’s still holding off the Lakers as the worst team against centers this season, now yielding an average of more than 66 total DKFP in the past 10 games. Vucevic’s scored more than 41 DKFP in four of his last five entering this ideal matchup. Nikola Jokic ($10,200) and DeAndre Jordan ($6,900) deserve to be mentioned here.
WORST – Myles Turner ($5,300) vs. Utah Jazz – Utah is the best team against centers on this slate, and ranks third overall defending the position this season. Turner is coming off one of his worst games of the season with just 12.75 DKFP.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
James Harden ($12,700) – Not much else to say here that I didn’t mention about Harden earlier. He’s on fire and the matchup couldn’t be better.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Tim Hardaway Jr. ($5,800) – More on the Hawks below in “Next Man Up” since they’ll be without Paul Millsap for the next two games. Hardaway isn’t going to be stepping in for Millsap in the frontcourt, but he should be counted on to pick up some of the scoring load. His minutes could go up with Kent Bazemore out, however. So plenty of reasons to feel positive about Hardaway for the next couple of games.
Next Man Up
Ersan Ilyasova ($5,000) – With Millsap out, Ilyasova will see a bump in minutes and usage. After playing 27 minutes and scoring 37 DKFP in his last outing, there’s clear upside here. The value play will be Taurean Prince ($3,500), who has been fantastic over the past four games and should potentially grow without Millsap around.
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.