Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 2/10/16
Last big Wednesday in the NBA before the dreaded All-Star Break. I say “dreaded” because I’m dreading all the down time. What am I supposed to do? Spend time with my family? Bah. That’s no fun.
Tonight’s interesting in that two teams are wild favorite for blowouts with the Cavs and Warriors both opening at -16. It’s too tough to roster those guys in cash games with the minutes likely dusted. So I’m leaving them off here.
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Reggie Jackson - FD 6600 DK 6500
Opponent - DEN
FD Proj. Pts - 33.31 DK Proj. Pts - 34.62
He was an abomination against Toronto on Monday, turning into a turnover machine, fouling everyone and just basically looking lost throughout. Look for a bounce back game in this one. Denver’s been well below average against opposing point guards this season, allowing around 5% more scoring than league average to the position. I wish we could pencil Reggie in for somewhere in the mid 30’s for minutes and he’d be a no-doubter for me.
Emmanuel Mudiay - FD 5600 DK 5800
Opponent - DET
FD Proj. Pts - 28.41 DK Proj. Pts - 29.52
He struggled from the field against the Nets on Monday but the minutes were still there. The Nuggets don’t have a great PG option behind Mudiay (Randy Foye? eep!) which means I think they continue playing him minutes in this kind of range. He isn’t a great shooter (which I remind folks of all the time) but the assist numbers are there, he’ll swipe a ball or two and dude takes enough shots that he can get to value in volume. Not a great matchup against Detroit, but the price is right.
Jeff Teague - FD 6300 DK 6000
Opponent - CHI
FD Proj. Pts - 32.92 DK Proj. Pts - 34.16
Teague's seen a steady diet of minutes over his last couple of games (including an OT affair) and used the run well, upping his scoring game. He'll never hand out a ton of assists in this Hawks' lineup, but there could be reason to believe Atlanta is showcasing him some for a trade.
Mike Conley - FD 6700 DK 6300
Opponent - BKN
FD Proj. Pts - 32.1 DK Proj. Pts - 33.92
Going to see a Memphis-heavy set of picks in this one. That's because with Gasol now out the minutes need to go somewhere and they don't have a traditional (or even non-traditional) center replacement to take them. This is something I will repeat over and over in this write up. The Memphis guys used to getting minutes stand all see a slight uptick in run and usage rates. And it helps they are playing a bad defensive team in the Nets.
E'Twaun Moore - FD 4200 DK 5600
Opponent - ATL
FD Proj. Pts - 21.33 DK Proj. Pts - 22.59
With Jimmy Butler out through the All-Star Break and then some, Moore should continue seeing his minutes at the two guard. He only played 31 against Charlotte, but that game got out of hand late seeing as how undermanned the Bulls were without Rose and Butler. Expect Rose to be back and Chicago to keep it a semblance of close with Atlanta. The double digit shots per game are a great sign for E’Twaun in the starting lineup and I expect that to continue tonight. FWIW, I don't love him as much on DraftKings where the price is too steep.
Victor Oladipo - FD 6500 DK 6400
Opponent - SAS
FD Proj. Pts - 30.98 DK Proj. Pts - 32.24
This game opened lower than I thought (Spurs -8) which suggests to some degree that the Magic could keep this one close. Dipo came out of the game with a knock to the noodle but came back in last game (though the minutes still didn’t get there). Oladipo’s minutes in the mid 30’s would be enough for him at these prices to hit value and if Orlando can keep it close I think he sees that kind of run. There’s a bit more upside for him if Tobias Harris sits again, but I think the latter comes back.
Jamal Crawford - FD 5000 DK 5300
Opponent - BOS
FD Proj. Pts - 24.79 DK Proj. Pts - 27.14
Crawford's coming off the bench and playing major minutes of late. In his last three he's averaged 21/2/2. He's taking a ton of shots, more than 15 per game over his last seven. Crawford needs to score to hit value, plain and simple. If the shot isn't falling or if the minutes get buzzed even a little (always in play with guys coming off the bench) then you are really sunk on him. I see him more as a tournament play, but the game should be fast-paced against the Celtics.
Strongly consider Tony Allen if you think last game's minutes were for real. If so, then he's a top play. Also consider Evan Fournier if Tobias sat again.
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Stanley Johnson - FD 4900 DK 6000
Opponent - DEN
FD Proj. Pts - 26.18 DK Proj. Pts - 28
This is a good news/ bad news type of situation. The bad news is Stanley screwed a lot of folks on Monday night when he was the highest-owned cash game play on FanDuel and drastically underperformed his projections. I’m a glass half full kind of guy though (not really, but for the sake of this write up I will be). The price hasn’t changed and neither has the situation. He played a ton of minutes and should again with KCP out. That and many folks will have the bad taste in their mouth from last game and not roster him when he’s still very much a bargain.
Kawhi Leonard - FD 7300 DK 7600
Opponent - ORL
FD Proj. Pts - 35.42 DK Proj. Pts - 36.9
It's very difficult predicting Kawhi's minutes on a game-to-game basis. The Spurs find themselves in enough blowouts (the good kind for them) that Leonard just doesn't see the court in the fourth quarter. This one isn't projected to get completely out of hand and I want to trust Vegas in this regard. He's risky for sure but the variable minutes have led to a price decrease across the sites. Which means when we catch him in the close game, we're good. I'm taking the shot tonight that he sees run in the low-to-mid thirties and gets us home.
Matt Barnes - FD 5000 DK 4800
Opponent - BKN
FD Proj. Pts - 24.94 DK Proj. Pts - 26.96
Jeff Green - FD 5600 DK 5700
Opponent - BKN
FD Proj. Pts - 25.81 DK Proj. Pts - 27.49
A lot of Marc Gasol minutes need to go somewhere. Why not these two guys. Green played a boat load last game and into overtime while Barnes was in foul trouble and eventually fouled out of the game. I suspect both guys get major run tonight. If Memphis shortens up their rotations then you could see both of these guys play minutes in the high 30's with Barnes at the small ball four.
Zach Randolph - FD 6300 DK 6500
Opponent - BKN
FD Proj. Pts - 32.57 DK Proj. Pts - 33.19
Marc Gasol is out with a fractured foot and won’t be back anytime soon. That leaves a lot of big man minutes open for the Grizzlies and if last game is any indication, a bunch of them are going to Z-Bo. He went 35 in regulation (5 in OT) against Portland last time out and that was with Gasol going for ten minutes before getting hurt. Randolph put up a 26/9/4 line and could be in for similar production tonight. It will be interesting to see what Memphis does now, but they have a good team to try it out against considering the Nets suck.
Anthony Davis - FD 10200 DK 9700
Opponent - UTA
FD Proj. Pts - 49.98 DK Proj. Pts - 50.73
Oh boy, here we go again. Look, here’s the thing. Our system is going to call Davis a close-to must play against anyone if he’s sitting in these price tiers. There’s just no getting around it. His injury-proneness has stagnated the salaries and we are left looking at him and hoping he makes it through a game unscathed. I can understand the hesitation, but our system has to control for minutes and even with an arbitrary “risk downgrade” he’s still coming in close to the top of the overall value plays. Bad matchup, but the price just isn’t correct if you assume he’s going to play close to 40 minutes.
Thaddeus Young - FD 7000 DK 6900
Opponent - MEM
FD Proj. Pts - 34.15 DK Proj. Pts - 35.48
Hey, speaking of the Nets and the Grizzlies, here's Thad. He's back to playing major minutes for Brooklyn and this could be just his kind of game. The Grizzlies will undoubtedly go small (what choice do they have?) and that's the kind of affair that suits Young's game. He's more about quickness and the open court than he is banging down low with imposing fours. And he doesn't stretch the court. But in a wide-open game without much defensive interior presence, well he could go off. Been scoring in bunches lately and that could continue here.
Center is the deepest position for Wednesday’s slate. This will be where you probably make or break your lineup. There are great plays in every price tier. I’m going from most expensive down, but understand that each of these guys could show up in optimal lineups when it’s all said and done.
DeMarcus Cousins - FD 10600 DK 11100
Opponent - PHI
FD Proj. Pts - 51.67 DK Proj. Pts - 52.29
Though the Sixers have been a feisty team basically since Ish Smith came around, things could get real ugly for them real quick with Boogie. They don’t have a great interior matchup for him (few teams do) and the pace of the game could lead to him doing real damage both in real life and on the fantasy end of things. He’s a PF on DK (and also real expensive) but this is just a fantastic matchup for the guy who’s been fantasy gold of late (outside of the game against Cleveland).
Andre Drummond - FD 8200 DK 8000
Opponent - DEN
FD Proj. Pts - 40.36 DK Proj. Pts - 41.09
Denver doesn’t completely roll over to opposing centers like they’ve done in the past, though they aren’t great either. They fall somewhere in the middle (below average in scoring, slightly above average in not allowing rebounds). But Drummond’s price is such that you can grab him with hints of upside if SVG just keeps him on the court for minutes in the mid 30’s. It’s the latter piece that I worry most about. But Denver trots out a trio of big men with offensive games meaning Detroit should be forced to defend.
Gorgui Dieng - FD 6300 DK 6700
Opponent - TOR
FD Proj. Pts - 31.82 DK Proj. Pts - 32.32
Gorgeous Gorgui saw some minutes buzzed in a mini-blowout at the hands of the Pelicans (not something many teams fall victim to) and I suppose that’s a bit in play here against the Raptors. But I doubt it. Ding’s playing more of the four than center right now and actually complimenting some of KAT’s game around the rim. This is all to say, both guys are getting it done in this arrangement even if it might not be the best for the team as a whole.
Al Horford - FD 7300 DK 6600
Opponent - CHI
FD Proj. Pts - 36.21 DK Proj. Pts - 36.84
A guy our system constantly likes though never completely loves. I putting him in here because he exists in the upper tier of Pts/$ plays at the position, but I never feel comfortable playing the guy (that’s just a full disclosure kind of thing). Chicago hasn’t defended centers well this season at all in really any facet.
We made some minor adjustments to our system, but it’s real tough to know how Marc Gasol’s absence will effect the Grizz front court D. It can’t be good. For that, I don’t mind taking a spec look at Brook Lopez tonight.
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