DeandreAyton

Steph Curry is expected to return to action tomorrow, finally! In the meantime, we are stuck watching one more game of the Warriors as a bottom feeder. Golden State has a fairly strong lead for the worst record in the league. As for the Suns, they are hanging around in the playoff race, sitting 4.5 games out of the eighth seed. They almost certainly won’t make it, but we can expect their core players to get big minutes as long as they are alive.

Note: All salaries will be Flex prices unless noted as Captain’s Pick prices.


FIVE BETTING TRENDS

— The Warriors have failed to cover the spread in each of their last seven road games against opponents who are on the second leg of a back-to-back.

— Each of the last five games between the Warriors and Suns have gone UNDER the total points line.

— Andrew Wiggins has scored 21-plus points in each of his last three appearances against the Suns.

— Damion Lee has recorded four assists in each of the Warriors’ last three games.

— The Warriors have lost each of their last four games by a margin of 11-plus points.

Stats provided by DraftKings Sportsbook


SHOWDOWN STRATEGY

Warriors

After he was a late scratch in the Warriors’ last game, Andrew Wiggins ($7,800) is listed as a probable to play tonight. Even so, it’s a bit hard to trust his injury designation after what happened on Thursday. We are going to need an update confirming his playing, and if active, he makes for a risky play with substantial upside. Since coming to the Warriors, Wiggins has had some big games with a handful of duds also mixed in.

Jordan Poole ($6,000) is the one player listed as questionable in this game. He sprained his ankle in the Warriors’ last game although he was able to return in the fourth quarter. This leads me to think he is a bit more likely to play than sit. If out, there is a pretty big playing time void to fill. Poole has been starting for Golden State lately and has played over 30 minutes in six straight games. If he’s out, Juan Toscano-Anderson ($3,600) figures to play extra minutes. The Warriors have been giving him a chance to play in the second half of the season and he’s averaging 22.63 DKFP in the last three games.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Andrew Wiggins (back) will be available to play tonight. Draymond Green (knee) and Jordan Poole (ankle) have been ruled out.

Finding safety on the Warriors isn’t an easy task. Most of the playing time and production has been inconsistent, but one player who’s been relatively steady is Damion Lee ($6,400). He has at least 25 DKFP in six consecutive games and has averaged 30.88 DKFP in his last two games against the Suns.


Suns

We have two players to choose from for captain here. Both Deandre Ayton ($14,700 CP/ $9,800) and Devin Booker ($13,200 CP/ $8,800) make for fine choices. I view Ayton as the play with a bit more upside, while Booker has been a bit safer over the last couple of weeks. I prefer the ceiling of Ayton. Despite this game being played on the tail end of a back-to-back, I don’t expect it to affect the young big man. He’s averaging 58.92 DKFP when playing without rest this season. Whichever you choose to be Captain, I think both should be rostered. Ayton and Booker both are going to see upticks in usage going forward since Kelly Oubre is injured.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Deandre Ayton (hip) will be available to play in tonight’s game.

With Oubre out, we can also count on Mikal Bridges ($6,200) to play big minutes. In the last two games, he averaged 30.63 DKFP in 38 minutes per game. Even before Oubre got hurt, Bridges was starting to show signs of improvement and his fantasy production was on the upswing. Bridges moved into the starting lineup in late January and has averaged 25.63 DKFP as a starter.

I think the best punt play from this game is Aron Baynes ($1,800). We don’t need a ton of production out of his cheap salary and he’s scored double-digit DKFP in three consecutive games. He no longer starts at center for the Suns, but this isn’t a death sentence to his fantasy production relative to his salary. As a reserve, Baynes is averaging 13.77 DKFP.


THE OUTCOME

This is about as confident as I could be picking the Suns to win a game. They are 8.5-point favorites, which seems a bit wide, but the Warriors haven’t been competitive for most of this season. This figures to change when they get Steph Curry back. Until he returns, I am always going to be picking against the Warriors.

Final Score: Phoenix 116, Golden State 110


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