The NBA Playoffs are finally here, and we have our second slate of games set to get underway. While the first round can yield some lopsided results, the promise of star power on every slate makes creating lineup tons of fun. Let’s get right into my top targets for Sunday’s four-game NBA playoff slate.
StudRussell Westbrook ($11,200) – Who cares about the matchup against the Jazz? Playoff Russ is here. Fresh off averaging a triple-double for the second consecutive season, Westbrook’s proven he can essentially accomplish any statistical feat he chooses on a basketball court. Westbrook should fill up the stat sheet in Game 1, as he and the Thunder try and prove they’re for real out west.
Other Options – Chris Paul ($8,100)
ValueRicky Rubio ($5,900) – Rubio’s price tag on the other side of this matchup is just far too cheap. Rubio was $7,200 just three games ago, and should see a spike in minutes now that the postseason is here. This is the perfect type of playoff value we’re looking for.
Other Options – Darren Collison ($5,200)
StudJames Harden ($11,100) – Harden’s failed to top 48 DKFP in four of his last five games, but the Rockets have also been playing meaningless games for a while now. With something now on the line, I expect Harden’s minutes and production to rise. Minnesota isn’t an ideal matchup, which has me leaning towards rostering other studs, but Harden could be a nice GPP pivot.
Other Options – Donovan Mitchell ($7,400)
ValueJaylen Brown ($5,600) – Down Kyrie Irving and Marcus Smart, Brown has no choice but to be a key contributor for the Celtics in the postseason. While Brown’s had plenty of poor games, he’s also flashed close to 40 DKFP upside three times in his last five games. At his salary, that’s a steal.
Other Options – Corey Brewer ($4,400)
StudLeBron James ($11,500) – The Cavs landed the 4-seed in the east, and LeBron’s heard all the criticism coming his way. Now it’s time to lock in and attempt to make his eighth straight NBA Finals. The Pacers are a pretty good matchup for LBJ to take advantage of, which leaves LeBron and my top play on this slate. Look for a statement game here.
Other Options – Paul George ($7,700)
ValueKhris Middleton ($6,800) – I was planning to write about Jabari Parker here, who I’ve been really impressed with lately. But then Middleton’s salary caught my eye … $6,800.That’s not considered “value” until you realize that Middleton costed $8,400 to end the season, and consistently drops over 40 DKFP. This is a discount worth considering.
Other Options – Jayson Tatum ($6,200), Jabari Parker ($5,500), Marcus Morris ($5,300)
StudGiannis Antetokounmpo ($10,200) – While I like going for Middleton and Parker on the Bucks, that doesn’t mean The Greek Freak will have a poor game. Like pretty much every team in the NBA, the Celtics don’t have anyone that can cover Giannis, and he’s pretty affordable for a stud in the postseason. Needing just over 50 DKFP to reach value, I think this is a safe play.
Other Options – Kevin Love ($7,600)
ValueDerrick Favors ($5,100) – Although consistency isn’t exactly what comes to mind with Favors, that’s exactly what he’s been lately. One look at his game log shows that he’s been a 25-30 DKFP guy almost every game. That’s perfect playoff value for his salary, especially when he has the potential for a few extra minutes.
Other Options – Trevor Ariza ($4,600), P.J. Tucker ($4,500)
StudKarl-Anthony Towns ($9,600) – Going up against the Rockets is almost a dream matchup for a center with KAT’s skill set. Look for him to run the floor and get some transition buckets, while also feeding into the 3-point shot, leaving Towns with some nice upside. With his salary under $10,000 for the first time in four games, the price is perfect to capitalize on.
Other Options – Rudy Gobert ($7,000)
ValueAl Horford ($6,000) — The bottom line for the Celtics is that Horford’s just going to have to do more for this team in the postseason given the current injury situation. With his salary on the decline, Horford should be a nice option against the Bucks. Having scored roughly 35 DKFP in three of his last four, that’d be well exceeding value at his current salary. And remember, there’s opportunity for extended run for these guys come playoffs.
Other Options – Clint Capela ($6,400), Aron Baynes ($3,600)
*DKFP DraftKings Fantasy Points
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. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.