Game Flow Notes
HIGH O/U – Clippers vs. Warriors- The total in this one is 225.5 with a spread of 10 points. Even if this game doesn’t stay close, the rivalry angle of this one should keep starters involved late into the game. The Clippers will need Chris Paul and his 28% usage rate to be huge at Oracle tonight. Paul has become most of the team’s scoring with Griffin out and is averaging 42 DKFP on the season. The Warriors will welcome back the Stephen Curry that put up 52 DKFP against the Timberwolves. After a terrible game against the Spurs, Curry bounced back in a big way. He has a usage of 30% (which has been going up) and has 50+ DKFP potential tonight.
LOW O/U – Heat vs. Spurs- This game has the lowest total on the evening at 196 with a spread of 11.5. I think that the spread is a little lopsided, but the Spurs could be frustrated after their loss in Charlotte. The Heat have been a two-headed monster using Dwyane Wade and Hassan Whiteside to light up the scoreboard. Both guys have a 20+ usage rate and are averaging 30 or more DKFP per game. The issue here is matchup, as they face one of the league’s best defenses. I have both Wade and Whiteside projected slightly undervalue this evening. The Spurs have also been utilizing two guys to help propel them to victory. Kawhi Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge have become the new faces of the Spurs. Both guys have a usage rate of 25% and are also averaging 30 or more DKFP per game. If I have to play someone from this game, Kawhi and LaMarcus are probably the safest options.
Pace of Play
HIGH PACE – Kings vs. Timberwolves- This is the 2nd fastest paced game on the night with a projected game pace of 101.6. DeMarcus Cousins is questionable with a knee bruise, but if he gives it a go he will be the highest projected player on the night. He has a usage rate of 34% and is averaging of 50+ DKFP a game. Make sure you check injuries before lock, but he is a definite play if he suits up. The Wolves are all about Ricky Rubio and Karl-Anthony Towns. I say again that I have been very impressed with the Wolves this season. Rubio put up 51 DKFP against the Warriors in his last outing. I have him projected at 35 DKFP tonight in a great matchup.
LOW PACE – Bucks vs. Cavaliers- The projected game pace in this one is 93.8. Coach Ty Lue has said that all Cavs are available tonight. Coach Jason Kidd has said that he will find a way to screw with your DK lineup every night. The only consistency for Milwaukee has been the Giannis Antetokounmpo show. Antetokounmpo is playing over 35 mpg and is seeing a usage rate of 24%. Since he took over at PG he is averaging about 45 DKFP a game. I have him projected at 40+ tonight. For the Cavs, King LeBron James will look to replicate his phenomenal 66 DKFP performance against the Nuggets.
Note: Be sure to follow injury news throughout the day for the latest updates and changes to the statuses listed below.
|Probable||Kevin Love (CLE), Jusuf Nurkic (DEN), Jeff Green (LAC), Carmelo Anthony (NYK), Allen Crabbe (POR)|
|Questionable||Dennis Schroder (ATL), Jonas Jerebko (BOS), Kenneth Faried (DEN), Jakarr Sampson (DEN), Kevin Seraphin (NYK), James Johnson (TOR), Jonas Valanciunas (TOR), Patrick Patterson (TOR), Alan Anderson (WAS), Robert Covington (PHI), Richaun Holmes (PHI), Goran Dragic (MIA), Kobe Bryant (LAL), D'Angelo Russell (LAL)|
|Doubtful||Andrew Bogut (GSW)|
|Out||Jae Crowder (BOS), E'Twaun Moore (CHI), Chandler Parsons (DAL), Andre Iguodala (GSW), Jahlil Okafor (PHI), Ben McLemore (SAC), DeMarcus Cousins (SAC), Tyson Chandler (PHX), Ryan Kelly (LAL), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (DET)|
Editor’s Note (1:50 PM ET): DeMarcus Cousins has been ruled OUT tonight. This has a huge impact on the Kings who will need to pick up the slack for one of the best big men the NBA has to offer. Rajon Rondo ($7,600) sees a usage rate bump from 19 percent to 20.7 percent with Cousins out this season. Rudy Gay ($6,100) has a usage rate bump from 22.1 percent to 28.7 percent with Cousins sidelined this year. If you are searching for value, Kosta Koufos ($3,000) sees a usage rate bump from 14.7 percent to 17 percent with Cousins out and has played 27.3 minutes per game (compared to 18 minutes on the season).
Editor’s Note (5:00 PM ET): Tyson Chandler is unlikely to play tonight for the Suns. Jon Leuer ($3,600) is averaging over 1 DK fantasy points per minute, according to our own Levitan’s Leverage article. Leuer is averaging over 26 DK FPPG with Chandler out this season. Alex Len has also averaged just under 30 DK points per game with Chandler sidelined in 2015-16.
Editor’s Note (6:10 PM ET): With Kentavious Caldwell-Pope out tonight, Darrun Hilliard ($3,000) will draw the start for Detroit. The Pistons do have reasonable depth at the wings, so there’s a lot of risk associated with Hilliard but given that he’ll get the starting nod, it’s hard to ignore his price tag. Stanley Johnson’s value decreases since he isn’t starting but he’s still an option as well to fill up some of the 36.5 minutes per game that Caldwell-Pope is averaging this year.
Defense vs. Position
Point Guard Matchups
BEST – Brandon Knight (PHO) vs. Los Angeles Lakers- The Lakers are ranked 30th against opposing PGs. Knight has averaged 40 DKFP against the Lakers this season. He just put up 39 DKFP against them two games ago. He is starting to see his minutes come back and his usage is still about 30%. I have him projected at 40 DKFP tonight.
WORST – Kyle Lowry (TOR) vs. Boston Celtics- The Celtics are ranked 1st against opposing PGs. Lowry just recently put up 51 DKFP against this same Celtics team, so the 1st ranking doesn’t scare me away. Lowry boasts a usage rate of 23% and is averaging 40 DKFP a game. Don’t stay away from this Raptor tonight due to matchup.
Shooting Guard Matchups
BEST – Zach Lavine (MIN) vs. Sacramento Kings- The Kings are ranked 29th against opposing SGs. If you are looking for contrarian LaVine is probably not your play tonight. He is great in faster paced matchups and has seen his usage rise to about 23% in March. I have him projected at 35 DKFP this evening and I feel like he will be a very popular play.
WORST – Dwyane Wade (MIA) vs. San Antonio Spurs- The Spurs are ranked 1st against opposing SGs. Wade isn’t the typical SG play, as he is seeing a usage rate of 31%. If the Heat want to stay in the game tonight it will take a 40+ performance from Wade. I think he comes in slightly under this tonight with about 35 DKFP.
|Player Targets||Levitan's Leverage||Cheat Sheet|
|Game Breakdowns||Tournament Plays||Top 5's by Position|
Small Forward Matchups
BEST – Gordon Hayward (UTAH) vs. Houston Rockets- The Rockets are ranked 30th against opposing SFs. Hayward is seeing 36 mpg and a usage rate of about 34%. I love the matchup, but I am worried about present form. Hayward is coming off of an injury and has only produced sub par performances in his last two games. I have him projected at 35+ DKFP tonight, but I think he could disappoint.
WORST – Joe Johnson (MIA) vs. San Antonio Spurs – The Spurs are ranked 1st against opposing SFs. Johnson has seen his usage rate drop to about 18% since the trade, but is still reaching value on some nights. Unfortunately, his 28 DKFP average makes me automatically look for other options this evening.
Power Forward Matchups
BEST – Gorgui Dieng (MIN) vs. Sacramento Kings- The Kings are ranked 30th against opposing PFs. Dieng has a usage rate of 23% and is averaging over 25 DKFP a game. I have him projected at 30+ DKFP tonight and feel like he can easily exceed that total.
WORST – Jabari Parker (MIL) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers- The Cavaliers are ranked 1st against opposing PFs. Parker has a usage rate of 17% and is averaging about 25 DKFP a game. Parker should give way to Giannis and Middleton tonight, but he has the ability to put up his season average. I think there are better options on tonight’s slate.
BEST – Nikola Jokic (DEN) vs. Philadelphia 76ers – The 76ers are ranked 30th against opposing Cs. Jokic has really come on for the Nuggets and has a usage rate of 21%. He is seeing over 25 mpg now and averaging 30+ DKFP over the last month. I have him projected at 35 DKFP tonight and I think he easily hits this target.
WORST – Greg Monroe (MIL) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers – The Cavs are ranked 1st against opposing Cs. Monroe put up 40 DKFP last game in a revenge game against his old team. He does have a nice usage rate when he’s on the court, sitting at about 22%. Unfortunately, he plays for Jason Kidd and we can’t determine the amount of minutes he will see on a nightly basis but he might be an intriguing tournament option.
Lineup Quick Hits
Superstar Worth Paying For
Stephen Curry – GSW vs. LAC – $10,500 – Curry gets one of his favorite matchups on the season against Chris Paul tonight. Curry hammed it up against the Wolves last game for 52 DKFP. He has a usage rate of 30% and will look to put up 50+ DKFP this evening. I think we could see some fireworks from the Chef tonight in a clear rivalry game against the Clips.
Save Big Bucks by Drafting
Mason Plumlee – POR vs. DAL – $4,600 – I told you to play Plumlee the other night and he went off for 46 DKFP. I won’t promise 46 tonight, but I will say that he should easily reach 30 DKFP. Due to injuries he is seeing a usage rate of 20% and my projections have him at 35 DKFP tonight.
Dud of the Night
Kyrie Irving – CLE vs. MIL – $7,000 – What do the numbers 24 and 14 mean to DFS players? They are the respective DKFP totals for Irving’s last two games. Kyrie has gone ice cold and gets to face the lengthy Giannis Antetokounmpo and Khris Middleton. He will lose some of his usage with Kevin Love back and should come in under value tonight.
DKFP = DraftKings Fantasy Points