Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 3/22/17
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Yep, another day where we have to weigh whether or not Westbrook is worth it. He comes in at $13k+ on both sites, which is as high as he's been over the season. Westbrook had one of hs worst games of the season against the Warriors, finishing with 34 fantasy points in only 27 minutes. The Warriors absolutely blew them away and the Warriors had no chance entering the 2nd half. He also suffered a blister, though Billy Donovan has already said there is no risking of him missing this game. Looking past that 1 fluke of a game, Westbrook has 60+ in 10 of the last 14 and 70+ in 2 of the last 8. The 76'ers are a fantastic match-up for Westbrook, who is far stronger and faster than T.J. McConnell and Sergio Rodriguez. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot may get a few minutes on Westbrook as well and will struggle quite a bit. This Thunder team hasn't been playing well and I certainly expect the game to stay close. Westbrook is definitely a guy you can play in all formats, though there is definitely merit to fading him in both.
John Wall is definitely expensive, though nowhere near the same level as Russell Westbrook. He's $3k cheaper on both sites and it will definitely be hard to pay the extra $3k with Wall sitting here. Dennis Schroder is one of the absolute worst defenders in the league and has allowed nearly 54 FP per game to opposing PG's. Wall is going to be way too fast and shifty for Schroder, who has trouble moving laterally around on-ball screens. Gortat is one of the best screeners in the game and should be able to obliterate Schroder on a consistent basis. Wall will then switch onto the likes of Dwight Howard and Ersan Ilyasova, who obviously have no chance. Wall is going to have a very solid game tonight and I absolutely love him in cash games. Westbrook does have a lot more upside and it is a very close call. If enough value arises on the day, I may be willing to play both.
Kemba was absolutely atrocious in the 1st half against the Hawks, shooting just 3 times and scoring 8 fantasy points. He realized who he was and went for a very solid 2nd half, finding a way to not single-handedly destroy my lineups. Walker has been playing well outside of the last 3, finishing with 40+ in 7 of the last 8. This match-up with the Magic is pretty great one as they give up nearly 5 FP per minute to opposing PG's. Elfrid Payton is a fine defender, though a tad undersized. he also loses a lot of match-ups in transition, as guys like Walker are just a little too quick for him. The Hornets are extremely reliant on Walker for production and I certainly see him coming through tonight. Walker is also a big cutter, so the fact that the Magic have no shot blockers is great. Biyombo can come off the bench, but then the Magic have no offense. Either way, I think Walker hits value and definitely has upside for tourneys.
Danilo Gallinari is currently doubtful and Wilson Chandler is questionable. If either misses, both Harris and Barton get usage and minutes bumps. If both Gallo and Chandler miss, these guys are fantastic options. Harris has been extremely consistent lately, topping 30 fantasy points in 6 of the last 7. He is a very good player and will consistently hit value with the minutes. Will Barton is a little more variant, as he is a bit more reliant on real-life scoring. With that being said, the Nuggets will need scoring against the Cavs. Both of these guys have a ton of appeal in all formats and I will definitely have a ton. Harris will likely be in 100% of my lineups and Barton will be in the bulk of my tournaments. Shooting guard is a pretty spread-out position and I expect the ownership to reflect that.
Evan Fournier FD - $5500 DK - $5800
Opponent - CHA
Proj Pts FD - 28.47 DK - 30.71
Fournier and the magi have been pretty steady lately, finishing with a whole lot of average performances. Fournier has been consistent as of late and he usually is when healthy. Facing off with a Hornets team that has been average against SG's, I'm not worried. Nicolas Batum is a pretty good on-ball defender but switches onto the ball handler a lot, which will leave Fournier for Kemba and MKG. While one is a plus and one a minus, I'm willing to bet Fournier obliterates Kemba when given the opportunity. Neither of these teams love to play in transition or avoid it, so it should be a pretty loose affair. Fornier is my favorite Magic on the board and I like him in all formats. The ownership should be fair and the production should pay it off well. Fournier is still way too cheap on both sites, mostly due to him being somewhat underwhelming since returning from injury. You can expect Fournier to slowly return to the scoring beat he was last season.
Tim Hardaway Jr. FD - $5400 DK - $5900
Opponent - WAS
Proj Pts FD - 27.26 DK - 29.3
Kent Bazemore has been ruled out for the next week or so, which opens up a bunch of minutes. Tim Hardaway Jr. saw 33 minutes against the Hornets and even though he only scored 14 fantasy points, the fantasy points are promising. Hardaway is a very variant player and for that reason is a guy I only have in tournaments. he has a ridiculous amount of upside in this match-up, as the Wizards play extremely fast and can give it up on the perimeter to good shooters. Bradley Beal is a fine defender, but isn't anything to write home about. Hardaway will go way under-owned and makes a lot of sense in tourneys. His price has come back down and he doesn't need to go crazy to hit value. Hardaway has been over 50 fantasy points twice this season and they were in ver similar match-ups. While Hardaway is far from safe, he should see 12 shots and 30 minutes which will usually equate into at least 20 fantasy points.
Consider Avery Bradley. He will be needed on defense and should see Monta Ellis on offense.
Jimmy Butler FD - $8900 DK - $8900
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 43.73 DK - 45.64
Jimmy Butler went nuts last night, scoring 64 fantasy points against the Raptors. While the back to back is definitely scary, I don't think Hoiberg has an option. The Bulls are trying to make the playoffs and they have absolutely no chance if Butler isn't on the floor. He is by far the best player on the team and will be needed for rebounding as well tonight with Robin Lopez expected to be suspended. Butler has played well against this Pistons team, causing a problem for the likes of KCP and Marcus Morris. Butler should see at least 36 minutes here and has a floor around 40. His ceiling is well over 60 and always has triple-double upside. Rondo and Butler have been playing well together and I expect it to continue. Butler is the top SG option in both cash games and tournaments.
Kent Bazemore and Paul Millsap have already been ruled out for this game, so you can lock the minutes in for both of these guys. Sefolosha is one of the more difficult players to roster, mostly due to his perception as a defensive specialist that just sits in the corner. However, he doesn't do that in this offense. He gets involved quite a bit more and has been better in terms of FP per minute. Sefolosha will certainly be needed in this match-up as I could definitely see them putting him on Beal and switching Hardaway to Porter. As for Prince, he has a lot more upside. Sefolosha is still a safer, cash game option, while Prince is the guy that can take you to the promised land. The Wizards are an extremely fast-paced match-up and Prince should have the ball in his hands plenty. Seeing over 30 minutes recently, I'm willing to have some healthy exposure to Prince, as long as he isn't as popular as he was last game.
Richaun Holmes FD - $6100 DK - $6200
Opponent - OKC
Proj Pts FD - 28.92 DK - 30.22
The Sixers are pretty good at finding big men. With Nerlens Noel, Joel Embiid, Dario Saric, Richaun Holmes, and Ersan Ilyasova all running through the 76'ers this season, you can be sure the production will be there from Holmes. Okafor is currently questionable to play and he will cause a big impact on Holmes. If Okafor plays, Holmes will likely get around 28 minutes and hit value. If Okafor is out again, Holmes should see around 38 minutes and destroy value. He was forced to play 42 minutes against the Magic and exploded for 50 fantasy points. Holmes has been an amazing FP per minute producer when on the floor and the minutes are a guarantee at this point. Holmes is a great way to goin both cash games and tournaments.
Ersan Ilyasova FD - $4500 DK - $5500
Opponent - WAS
Proj Pts FD - 29.81 DK - 31.99Holmes become locks if Okafor gets ruled out.
With Millsap ruled out, Ilyasova is a lock for 28 minutes. While we definitely expected more last game, the Hawks elected to play small for much of the 2nd half. He matches up much better with Markieff Morris, who's a similar offensive player. While Ilyasova doesn't control the ball or run the floor, he does see an uptick in production with an uptick in pace. He relies on 3-point shooting for upside, which is a big reason we want him in fast games. He does a great job finding the 3-ball in transition and should be able to do that extremely well against the Wizards, who are a pretty bad defense in general once they get running. A lot of people will likely be off of Ilyasova, which is a mistake. He is still going to produce with Millsap out and I'm willing to have exposure in both cash and tournaments.
Juan Hernangomez FD - $3800 DK - $4700
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 21.37 DK - 22.42
Gallinari is doubtful and Chandler is questionable. Chandler plays more power forward, so his status is a bit more important for Hernangomez. Hernangomez is a guy who is guaranteed to produce when on the court. The problem is you never really know how many minutes he will play. If Chandler and Gallinari are both out, you can lock in at least 28. He matches up well with Kevin Love and should be able to score just fine. If Chandler does play, I will be a bit more hesitant. He has the floor to play 8 minutes and it wouldn't be crazy. With that being said, he could still see 28 minutes and destroy value. For that reason, I will make sure to have tournament exposure, even if Chandler does return. If neither Chandler or Gallinari play, make sure to plug in Hernangomez.
Steven Adams FD - $4900 DK - $5000
Opponent - PHI
Proj Pts FD - 28.8 DK - 30.2
The Thunder ended up getting the starters rest against the Warriors in what turned into a blowout very quickly. Adams will be able see a full load of minutes tonight in a terrific match-up against the 76'ers. With Jahlil Okafor questionable, Adams will either see Okafor or Holmes down low. They are both below average defenders that don't have much of an interior presence. Adams has been seeing over 34 minutes on a consistent basis and at his price, is a near lock for value. Sitting under $5k on both FanDuel and DraftKings, Adams only needs about 25-30 to make you happy. He also has plenty of upside here if the game stays close, topping 40 points on multiple occasions this season. You can target Adams in both cash games and tournaments. While he may not have the same upside as these next two guys, he gives you confidence at a cheap price and lets you pay up elsewhere.
Andre Drummond FD - $7800 DK - $7900
Opponent - CHI
Proj Pts FD - 38.13 DK - 39.9
Drummond has actually been somewhat consistent as of late, which is very weird to say. He hasn't shown the classic 60 fantasy point game, but also hasn;t showed us the 15 in a good match-up. He's been sitting right around 38-45 fantasy points, which is fine in cash games, though you would like a little bit more. The Bulls are likely to be without Robin Lopez tonight. Christiano Felicio also took a nasty hit to the hip and his status is in question. Drummond will be the only big body down low with any skill and should be able to absolutely dominate. He has the ability to hit 20 rebounds without much effort and the points will follow organically. Drummond is a guy I will have exposure to in both cash games and tournaments. he has a floor around 35 and a ceiling over 65.
Dwight Howard FD - $6800 DK - $7000
Opponent - WAS
Proj Pts FD - 35.96 DK - 37.79
I know, a lot of Atlanta Hawks. They are without Millsap and Bazemore and face off with one of the fastest teams in the NBA. Howard may benefit just as much as anyone from Millsap being out, as he saw nearly 40% more looks down low in the last 2. Marcin Gortat is definitely a good defender, but it won't really matter if hers behind Howard. Even in the halfcourt set, Howard should be able to get it done against the Wiz. Howard has been extremely consistent lately and I think it's the real deal. the Hawks have done a great job of suppressing his ego and forcing him to be a team player. With the uptick in usage and shots, I'm willing to give Howard a whirl in all formats, though there might not bee too much space left.
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- Russell Westbrook: (AP Photo/Jeff Haynes)