We only have a small 3 game slate tonight for NBA DFS. Most people will have their attention on the College Football Championship game, which is probably why the NBA went light on the schedule here. This is not a good three game slate either as we have a Nets/Spurs game with a total of only 193 and a spread nearing 15. The Warriors are also a big favorite in their matchup with the Heat, which leaves Chicago and Washington with an 8 point spread as the closest contest on the evening. Here’s how we see these games shaking out:
San Antonio spurs @ Brooklyn Nets
Line: Spurs -14.5
This game looks likely to be one that gets ugly. San Antonio is one of the best defensive teams in the NBA. We talk all the time about not targeting too many guys against them and that is when the spread is closer and the total higher. We all know Pops M.O. by now, so I would expect less minutes from key players here. Kawhi Leonard is normally that one exception, but I even think he plays closer to 30 minutes then the 35-38 we are used to seeing from him. Cheap bench players like a Boban or a Kyle Anderson have some appeal here, but mostly for GPPs as salary savers that could have some upside. For Brooklyn, we really do not want to target a lot with their implied team total being so low, the risk of blowout, and the difficulty of the matchup. Brook Lopez is their main threat, but can he reach value with all the negatives? Shane Larkin and Bojan Bogdanovich are the cheap options getting more minutes, but Larkin has underperformed and Bojan draws Kawhi defense. Neither of them are slam dunks to reach value either.
- Kawhi Leonard ($8400)
- Boban Marjanovic ($3300)
- Shane Larkin ($4400)
- Brook Lopez ($7600)
Washington Wizards @ Chicago Bulls
Line: Bulls -8
This is the best game we have in terms of spots to target for fantasy. The Total is elevated at 207 and the spread is the smallest on the evening at only 8. 8 is still a good amount of points, but the other games have spreads almost twice as high and that means the risk of a blowout is exponentially greater. Washington plays at a fast pace, and the Bulls have been surprisingly paced up as well. With Mirotic at the three, they are playing a more offensive minded lineup and that has ed to more points for them and opponents. Pau and Jimmy Butler have been playing at a very high level lately. With Noah still out, Pau should see a ton of minutes and usage again. Butler is far and away the best option at the position on this slate too, so those two guys should be very popular plays. For Washington, John Wall is going to have to play well if they want to stay in this game at all. I’m wondering if he draws Jimmy butler defense with Rose moving off to play Neal or Temple at the two? I think it would make for a tough day scoring for wall and might force others to step up. Marcin Gortat and Otto Porter would be the obvious choices. Both have performed well lately, and both have seen their prices rise. Both guys have solid matchups too, so both are in play for me. I also think Washington offers some of the best value as well. Jared Dudley with Nene and Humphries out is going to see minutes. He is my favorite salary saver in cash on the day. Neal and Temple with Beal out have both been doing enough to return 5X or 6X on their cheap price tags. With this being the game most likely to feature a lot of points and not be a blowout, I think you want heavy exposure to a lot of these guys here.
- John Wall ($9400)
- Jared Dudley ($4400)
- Pau Gasol ($8200)
- Jimmy Butler ($8300)
Editor’s Note – Marcin Gortat is questionable for tonight’s game. Be sure to check the injury news closer to tip-off.
Miami Heat @ Golden State Warriors
Line: Warriors -13
This is a game I will try to avoid. Miami usually paces teams down and is a very solid defensive team. The Warriors are also near the top in defensive efficiency, so despite the high totals, they are not easy to score on. This is a higher total than usual for Miami, but the spread says Vegas expects them to have a normal scoring output and just lose to a normal or slightly lower output from the Warriors. In English, that means neither team is really paced up so none of the players deserve a big bump. The Usual suspects should lead the charge for the Warriors. With Steph back, that means him and Draymond. Klay Thompson had some big games with Steph out, but we have already seen how easily he gets lost in the shuffle. On the Miami side, I guess whiteside has a good matchup, but he’s been up and down. Bosh vs. Draymond is not a place I would go. Wade should jack up a few more shots here in a paced up game, so he is an interesting play for a slight discount. Dragic has had some good and bad games as well, but I guess if you wanted to be brave or different in a GPP you can go that way too. This is the second best game for fantasy on the night, but it still is not one we would be looking to target heavily if we had other places to go.
- Dwyane Wade ($6600)
- Hassan Whiteside ($7000)
- Draymond Green ($10000)
- Stephen Curry ($10500)