Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

Doug Norrie

Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings 5/12/15

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Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Chicago Bulls


Well that was something now wasn’t it? In a game that was all over the map, Lebron wiped away much of his disaster game with one jump shot from the corner at the buzzer. He didn’t play well. He even admitted as much in his post game interview in which he said “I made mistake, after mistake after mistake.” And it was true. The Cavs, even after fighting and clawing their way back into the game late, nearly cost themselves the effort with a bunch of blunders late game.

This series is going to remain close for a couple of reasons. The Cavs are really lacking primary scoring options after Lebron and Kyrie (with the latter clearly not a 100%). Plus they got lucky with Pau Gasol sitting out. The Bulls on the other hand have scoring woes of their own beyond Rose and Butler. These games are grind-em-out affairs. The intensity is high, but it isn’t exactly polished.


Top Plays

LeBron James - FD 11600 DK 11400
Lebron isn't exactly crushing these prices, but I'm not interested in fading him on these short slates. With Love out and Kyrie and little banged up, so much of the burden of everything falls on LBJ. He put up thirty shots last game and I expect more of the same in this one. They just don't have much else on offense and it's clear that he wants to totally carry this team.

Derrick Rose - FD 8300 DK 8500
Point guard is thin on this slate because of some injuries so I think you basically have to play Rose. He's so much of the Bulls' offense and the price doesn't totally reflect his usage. Because you can get away with some cheap plays elsewhere, getting Rose in there with some other big money players like Lebron is easy because Rose is priced just a hair on the cheaper side.

Taj Gibson - FD 4100 DK 4600
With Pau Gasol set to sit again, Taj becomes the clear minutes benefactor. He started and got 34 minutes of run in game four on his way to a 6/8/2 line. That isn't great by any means, but he's coming in at punt prices so you can take it. If the production ticks up even a little he crushes these prices.


Value Plays

Tristan Thompson - FD 5400 DK 5200
When you watch the game it sure seems like he grabs every single offensive rebound. This isn't the case but perception makes it appear that way. He's playing a bunch of minutes with Love gone and doing just enough to pay his salaries.
Joakim Noah - FD 5700 DK 5900
He'd been looking real terrible on offense until last game when he busted out with an 8 point, 15 rebound performance. A lot of that was thanks to a huge uptick in minutes with Gasol out. Expect the same to happen again tonight. He's the top dollar-for-dollar value at center for sure.

Consider Mike Dunleavy as a cheaper option at SF


Los Angeles Clippers vs. the Houston Rockets


It’s starting to appear the Rockets are a dead team walking. They are down 3-1 in the series and have been completely blown out in the last two. They have no answer for Blake. Well they thought the answer was going to be fouling Deandre every millisecond, but that didn’t work out according to plan. They sent Jordan to the line a record 34 times, a strategy that made the game borderline unwatchable. The rest of the time the Rockets couldn’t get anything going on offense and had a disaster third quarter in which they allowed the Clips to put up 43.

This isn’t to take anything away from Los Angeles. They are clearly the better team in this series and the Rockets have no real answer for what Blake is doing on the court. The stats from last game a little wonky because of the free throw situation but the Clippers were still super efficient in their honest basketball possessions. I think this series is over.


Top Plays:

Warning: I do think most of the solid plays are from the Cavs-Bulls game
Blake Griffin - FD 11600 DK 10400
Blake saw a dip in production in game four mostly because DeAndre spent so much time at the free throw line and all those lost minutes in the blowout. I don't suspect the Rockets go back to hacking like crazy, and you really can't fade blowouts on super mini slates. So Blake becomes a clear play even though he's not called on to do everything with CP3 back in the fold.


Value Plays:

J.J. Redick - FD 5000 DK 5300
Jamal Crawford - FD 5700 DK 5400
Austin Rivers - FD 4200 DK 4700
All three are totally dependent on scoring and all three are coming cheap. Each can catch fire and outpace their salaries. Of the three, Redick is probably the safest.

Matt Barnes - FD 4500 DK 4900
Another way to get cheap money in at small forward from a guy who plays a ton of minutes. He does just enough on the court to be considered safe and his real value is how much he's on the court itself.
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image sources

  • lebron: AP Images

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