It looks like The Association is bending to the will of the NFL Juggernaut today with a short four game slate. The first game tips off at 3:30pm ET and then the remaining three begin at 6:00pm ET. DraftKings is offering guaranteed contests for both game sets and there is even a fun $3 entry, $125k Sharpshooter tournament paying out $10,000 to the winner. We will focus on tournament plays today and hope to unearth a couple gems as most gamers are going to be focused on researching NFL.
Russell Westbrook – OKC vs UTA – $10,300 – This is a favorable price point for Westbrook given the matchup against the Jazz who are once again one of the slowest paced teams by most measures and with the return of Kevin Durant, Westbrook does not get to dominate the ball as much. He is a fine tournament option and while the 44.4 DraftKings points he tallied in Salt Lake City last month is lower than his 54.9 season averaged, that is probably a solid floor to project him at. Additionally, without Rudy Gobert protecting the rim, Westy should be able to drive to the hoop at will.
Brandon Knight – PHO vs MIN – $7,500 – If you are playing in the early contests, Knight is a fine option as he “disappointed” his backers in a dream matchup on Friday against Portland. He is averaging just shy of 40 fantasy points per game on the season and this is a favorable matchup for him against the “defense” of Ricky Rubio.
Cory Joseph – TOR vs PHI – $4,300 – Joseph is the key reserve guard off the bench for the Raptors as he is backing up both Kyle Lowery and DeMar DeRozan. This is a nice matchup against the 76ers and with Toronto already installed as 12 point home favorites, CJ should see some extra time in mop up duty.
Eric Bledsoe – PHO vs MIN – $8,400 – The best play at the two-guard position today is in the early game. Phoenix and Minnesota project a 210.5 game total and there should be plenty of goodness to go around for the guards in this freewheeling affair.
Dwyane Wade – MIA vs MEM – $7,000 – On the second slate, D-Wade is easily the top option and though it is a tough matchup against the Grizzlies, he has been performing much better at home this season averaging 34.9 DraftKings points as opposed to 27.6 while on the road. Memphis has actually been in the bottom third of the league this season against opposing shooting guards, so ideally the name brand recognition of a tenacious defense dissuades most gamers from going this route.
Kevin Martin – MIN at PHO – $4,200 – Yikes, there really are no trustworthy value options Sunday among the limited shooting guard player pool. Martin is the best option, however, he is only available in the early games. He has back-to-back games of 40+ minutes and he has tallied 59 points on an astounding 47 shot attempts. The volume is something new as in the five previous games, Martin did even manage more the nine shot attempts. He is worth a dart throw if you are playing in the early tournaments.
Kevin Durant – OKC vs UTA – $10,000 – It is possible to play both KD and Westbrook on the same lineup, but it gets pretty gruesome at a the bottom of the roster. Durant posted 27 points, 6 rebounds, 1 assist and 5 combined blocks/steals in the last meeting with Utah. He and Westy can both go for 50+ fantasy points in the same game, so if you can stomach the risk of putting all your eggs in one basket, go for the double down!
Matt Barnes – MEM at MIA – $4,300 – Barnes has been solid with the Grizzlies this season and he fits in nicely with their style of play. He usually posts around 20 DraftKings points and he does have 35 fantasy point upside and he is a fine discount option from this very thin Sunday player pool.
Nerlens Noel – PHI at TOR – $5,800 – Noel has been struggling to find his place in the 76ers offense now that everyone is healthy. He has topped 30 DraftKings points just once since Thanksgiving. That said, most gamers are no longer looking to him which makes him a nice contrarian play in tournaments. With Jonas Valencuinis out of action for the Raptors, Noel should be able to own the paint against Patrick Patterson, Bismack Biyombo and Luis Scola.
Luis Scola – TOR vs PHI – $4,700 – Speaking of Scola, both he and Patrick Patterson – $3,800 are fine discount options on Sunday’s short slate. While the Philadelphia BIGs are talented, they have a long way to go before putting everything together and they have been exploited all season by crafty veterans.
Jahlil Okafor – PHI at TOR – $6,400 – I do prefer Okafor to Noel in this matchup, so will most gamers, which means Okafor will likely be quite popular on in tournaments. He can be maddeningly inconsistent, but he does have tremendous upside, particularly against the Toronto patchwork frontcourt.
Enes Kanter – OKC vs UTA – $4,500 – This should be a fun one for Kanter against his former team. The fun part is that he won’t have to face Rudy Gobert. While Kanter does most of his work outside the paint, he does move inside for rebounds and put backs when he has the size/talent advantage which he will in this game.