Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 2/27/17
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Cory Joseph FD - $4400 DK - $5200
Opponent - NY
Proj Pts FD - 24.92 DK - 26.1
It looks like Lowry might miss a few more games here, and if he does, you can expect to see Joseph be a chalk play once again. When healthy, the Raptors are a two man team. When they're missing one of their big two, everyone else immediately becomes an excellent value. Joseph played 36 minutes and paid better than 6x on this FanDuel price against Boston, and as of this writing he's on pace for similar minutes and similar production against the Trail Blazers. The Knicks are a fine match-up for opposing point guards, but focusing on the match-up sort of misses the point - this is just a straight price and opportunity mismatch.
Isaiah Thomas FD - $9300 DK - $8700
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 45.12 DK - 47.8
Thomas was pretty lousy in his first game back after the all-star break, but I wouldn't get too wrapped up in one performance. He shot 35% from the field and 30% from 3 - if he shot his normal percentages he would have been fine in a bad match-up with the Raptors. This match-up will be a heck of a lot better than that one was - the Hawks have allowed the 7th most fantasy points to opposing point guards this season, where the Raptors are a below league average match-up. Thomas is also playing without Bradley, which has given him about a 10% usage bump on the season. And here's a dirty secret about this slate - it's really, really shallow. A combination of uncertainty around injuries and some tough defenses means we don't have a ton of options, and Thomas allows us to pay up a bit for a good floor at a position greatly lacking safety.
Dennis Schroder FD - $6500 DK - $6300
Opponent - BOS
Proj Pts FD - 30.14 DK - 32.56
If safety's your thing, though, you might want to consider Schroder. The Celtics are a slightly above league average match-up on the season, but even better when Avery Bradley is sidelined and hiding Thomas becomes more difficult. Schroder, meanwhile, has averaged 5x+ on these prices since February 4th - and he looks like a great cash game option if Lowry comes back and you don't feel comfortable rolling with Joseph.
Keep an eye on the LeBron situation. If he sits again, Kyrie Irving becomes a very nice option.
DeMar DeRozan FD - $8500 DK - $8900
Opponent - NY
Proj Pts FD - 46.66 DK - 48.61
Another play that's completely dependent on Lowry's absence, but DeRozan moves into no-brainer territory if the Raptors' PG is on the shelf once again. He scored a career high 43 points on an absurd 28 shots against the Celtics on Friday, and as of this writing is on pace for another solid game on Sunday. The Knicks have been a dream match-up for opposing shooting guards all season, allowing the 5th most fantasy points per game to opposing SGs this year. I don't think you can roll with DeRozan if Lowry comes back, but he'll be a welcome inclusion in any format if Lowry's out once again.
Giannis Antetokounmpo FD - $10900 DK - $10700
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 51.12 DK - 53.34
If DeRozan falls out of the top lineups, I expect Giannis will slide in and fill his spot. He got right back to work putting up insane fantasy totals in his first game back from the break, dropping 34/12 on the Jazz and 28/6/8 against the Suns. This match-up with Cleveland gets a lot better if LeBron can't give it a go, of course, and at this point it looks like LeBron is fairly likely to miss this one as well. If LeBron isn't there, they literally don't have anyone that matches up with Giannis even remotely well. While Cleveland's league average PACE is nothing to celebrate, Giannis has the ball in his hands enough that he's a very consistent big money option.
Gerald Henderson FD - $3700 DK - $3400
Opponent - GS
Proj Pts FD - 19.49 DK - 20.6
Looking to spend a little less at shooting guard? Gerald Henderson is looking pretty reasonable. He's consistently been playing a 30 minute rotation, and flexes 7x+ points per dollar upside while routinely clocking in around 5x points per dollar. Yes, it's risky playing anyone against Golden State. And yes, any Sixers player is going to be a risk on a night to night basis, but at these prices you're really not taking on a ton of risk here. On an absolutely brutal slate at basically every position saving up means more than usual, and I would actually be totally fine seeing Henderson show up in any of my lineups in what rates to be a fast paced (if lopsided) game.
Harrison Barnes FD - $6100 DK - $6000
Opponent - MIA
Proj Pts FD - 30.09 DK - 31.75
More bad positions, please! Playing Barnes is a little like kissing your sister, but he's been getting the job done for cash games recently. The Mavs parting ways with Deron Williams is a pretty clear sign that Barnes role in the offense is safe at this point. Barnes has been paying 30+ fantasy points per game consistently on basically the same usage he's gotten all season, so I have no reason to believe that trend won't continue going forward. The fly in the ointment here is the match-up. Miami defends the small forward position well, and plays slowly. So, yeah, not a dream spot by any means. But on a day like today, this is what we have for ya.
Jae Crowder FD - $5800 DK - $5300
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 27.51 DK - 29.34
Crowder doesn't present the same points per minute consistency as Barnes, but he brings a similar skill set in a much better match-up. The Hawks have allowed the 6th most fantasy points per game to opposing small forwards this season, and while Crowder hasn't necessarily crushed thiese prices in the past, it's nice that he'll still be getting a usage bump from Avery Bradley's continued absence. It's worth noting that the price difference between the two is far more pronounced on DraftKings, where I like Crowder considerably better. I still might prefer Barnes on FanDuel just based on his consistent recent performance, but I wouldn't be aghast at rolling Crowder out there for cash games.
Andre Iguodala FD - $4500 DK - $4600
Opponent - PHI
Proj Pts FD - 20.85 DK - 21.94
A sneaky/maybe not so sneaky play if Durant misses Monday's tilt with the Sixers (he's currently questionable). Iggy posted 29 points against the Nets in their last game on the back of 9 assists - a situation he could find himself in once again if Durant's not around to have the ball in his hands constantly. If Durant returns this one is a non-starter, but I think it's only upside on Iggy if Durant sits again, particularly at such a bad position.
Also considered: Paul George and Carmelo Anthony, but each of them have considerable warts here. George has simply been terrible recently, and Melo combines a big price with a bad match-up. Wouldn't be surprised if either of them are chalk cash game plays, though, given how shallow the position looks.
Dario Saric FD - $7000 DK - $7600
Opponent - GS
Proj Pts FD - 36.07 DK - 39.24
Yup, another guy against Golden State. Listen, I get that the blowout risk is both very real and terrifying, but have you seen what Saric has been up to recently? He's been averaging 42 fantasy points per game - 6x, even on these lofty prices - since February 9th. He's also only seen his minutes rise, topping off at 40 in his last game with the Knicks. I don't suspect he'll hit those minutes with any regularity, but he sort of doesn't need to if you trust his points per minute production. The crisis of conscience here is how you think this match-up will effect the game scripts. Saric shouldn't necessarily lose shots if/when the Sixers fall behind, but will he lose his minutes if the game gets out of hand? It's hard to say, and I'm not sure I'm ready to make that call given how great an option he is if he DOES get the minutes. The Warriors still play the 2nd fastest PACE in the league, and if the Sixers can keep it within ten points going into the 4th quarter I think we'll all wish we had a piece of this guy.
Michael Beasley FD - $5500 DK - $5200
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 30.13 DK - 31.7
If only he qualified at small forward! Middleton has a scheduled day of rest on Monday, and we're likely to get a 30+ minute game out of Beastley. It's a bad match-up with the Cavs to be sure, but Beasley averaged 35 fantasy points in the last 2 games where he played at least 30 minutes. We'd be happy with 25 fantasy points here, which feels like close to a sure thing if you believe in the minutes. LeBron's status shouldn't matter too much, here, as he'll almost certainly be paired up with Giannis. I love Beasley's match-up here.
Serge Ibaka FD - $5900 DK - $6200
Opponent - NY
Proj Pts FD - 29.18 DK - 30.66
It's tough to make any definitive claims about what the Raptors have planned for Ibaka, but what we know so far is that he played 35 minutes in a blowout and 34 against the Blazers. Early returns on these prices don't paint Ibaka as a points per minute superstar, but he appears to be providing a very solid floor with plenty of usage and his usual compliment of rebounds and blocked shots. It helps that the Raptors just have no big man depth whatsoever. The Knicks have been a top 10 match-up for opposing power forwards all season, and I suspect that Ibaka will pay an easy 5x points per dollar on his prices here.
Myles Turner FD - $6500 DK - $6100
Opponent - HOU
Proj Pts FD - 32.53 DK - 33.73
Turner went through a pretty rough stretch for a while, but has come out on the other side with 5 5x points per dollar performances in his last 6 games. He'll get his best match-up of that stretch here with the Rockets, who have allowed the 3rd most fantasy points to opposing centers this season. The reassuring thing with Turner right now is his hustle stats - he's had multiple defensive stats in each of his last 4 games and averaged better than 7 boards during that time. I think he's a great cash game play with plenty of upside for big tournaments as well.
Guillermo Hernangomez FD - $5900 DK - $6800
Opponent - TOR
Proj Pts FD - 29.97 DK - 31.4
I toyed with the idea of listing Hernangomez first, but then realized he is sort of a worse and less consistent version of Myles Turner? I still think Billy has room to put up a huge night, but the price has gotten to the point (particularly on DraftKings) where the upside is greatly mitigated. I still like him for big tournaments here, though, because I suspect people will be off him after he disappointed so many owners against the Sixers. Don't get too discouraged with that line, though - the Knicks haven't fallen in love with Kyle O'Quinn, Hernangomez just ran into insane foul trouble, and I'd guess he's still in line for a high 20s/low 30s minute rotation. I prefer Turner for cash, but wouldn't be surprised to see some fireworks here.
Also considered: Dwight Howard. He was still reasonable last game in spite of foul trouble destroying his minutes. Basically a league average match-up, so I'd prefer Turner here.