Winning in tournaments requires getting not just good efforts from your roster, but some extra high point production. Sometimes this requires differentiation in roster and other times it’s just identifying the high-ceiling plays for the slate.
For our purposes, we’re going to focus on the high-ceiling plays by position for tonight’s games, even for a short slate like Opening Night is.
Nate Robinson ($3,000) – He’s going to get time with Jrue Holiday on limited minutes, Norris Cole being out and Ish Smith just getting claimed Monday by the Pelicans. Everyone will be on him because it’s such a small slate, but no min priced player can erupt for points like Nate-Rob.
Stephen Curry ($9,500) – Curry has the boss matchup and is a no-brainer against the Pelicans’ weakened backcourt. The team and game totals are high and Anthony Davis could be enough to keep the game close to where a 38-40 minute Curry game could be in play. Plus, funnnnn!
Reggie Jackson ($7,800) – Jackson had 29% usage in the last 20 games for the Pistons and the floor will be spread even more with Ersan Ilyasova and Marcus Morris on the outside. Also, Jeff Teague can be had from time to time as he lets faster PG pass by so he can try and trail block the play. Jackson has 50 point upside and costs almost 2K less than Curry.
Ryan Anderson ($5,000) – Anderson can get super hot, hit a few threes and suddenly he has 30-35 DK points. The Warriors bigs don’t usually chase out to the perimeter, so Anderson could find himself in the right spot to hit his groove, especially if the Warriors are paying extra close attention to Davis.
Tristan Thompson ($4,600) – Mozgov has been hurt so his minutes may be limited, leaving plenty of time for the new 82 million dollar man to start earning his raise. The Bulls were soft in the middle and allowed the fourth most offensive boards last season. They are playing Mirotic and Gasol together in the starting lineup, meaning that if Thompson ends up getting starter’s minutes off the bench, he could use his 14.4% Offensive Rebound rate to pile up some board, putbacks and plenty of DK points.
Anthony Davis ($10,400) – Davis will eventually go back above 11K, especially if his usage rises under Alvin Gentry. With a high pace, high Vegas total going in this game, Davis needs to be played for this price as his ceiling could be as high as 70 points. The Warriors are the toughest defensive team, but a player like Davis piles up the points all over the floor and is somewhat immune to tough defensive matchups. Toss in the extra pace in this game and you’ll want to find a way to get he, Curry and Andre Drummond in the lineup.
Andre Drummond ($8,200) – The last of the three high dollar plays I’ll be squeezing into my lineups tonight, Drummond gets a great matchup against the Hawks, who by design bail on the offensive glass, leaving all the rebounds to Drummond.
Al Horford ($7,300) – Last season this Pistons finished fourth in missed shots per game, meaning that they provide good opportunities for rebounds. They also didn’t play much defense inside, even with a guy like Drummond. This was the first offseason that Horford wasn’t recovering from injury or playing internationally and the Hawks are looking to him more and more as Option A.
Timofey Mozgov ($4,600) – I suggested Thompson above, but if Mozgov were able to play closer to 30 minutes, he could score a point per minute against the Bulls, who are generous to the interior opponents.