Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice

03/25/2017
Jerry Vanderwoude

Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 3/25/17

What a difference a day makes. Friday night we had a full slate of juicy match ups making it hard to choose where to go for the value. Tonight on the other hand the pickin's are rather slim. The Jazz head into the Staples center to face the Clippers at 3:30, with the real fun beginning at 7:30 with a 4 game main slate. For those so inclined, Draftkings has an early only pairing the 3:30 game with the Wizards in Cleveland, FanDuel on the other hand is just bundling the 3:30 in to an all day slate. We're going to direct our focus here on the 4 game main, but our projections cover all things NBA and coming soon MLB so be sure to click that button below if you haven't done so already.
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Point Guard

John WallJohn Wall FD - $9500 DK - $9700
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 46.12 DK - 48.96
Mr Wall's price is starting to come back down to earth, which is good news, because I just don't feel he's a 10k player for the most part. Sure he's shown flashes of it in the past month, but most night's it's hard to justify locking him in. Even at the current price points, I would probably look elsewhere on a full slate and limit Wall to GPP, but tonight we have a slim player pool, and this promises to be an exciting, no holds barred, throw down. That is unless coach James decides his fragile players all need to rest on the back to back. Last night Wall only played 24 minutes in an easy win over Brooklyn. Washington was probably being cautious with their star guard who was unsure if he would even play with migraines earlier in the day. Prior to last night, You have to travel back to mid January to find a game where he ran the boards for less than 30. Kyrie and company are the most generous defense going this evening against opposing point guards, allowing 3% more scoring, 1% more rebounds and 2% more assists to the position.

Ricky RubioRicky Rubio FD - $7400 DK - $7800
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 34.73 DK - 36.7
The Blazers and the Wolves meet up in the final game of the evening, and for DFS purposes, these two teams are the two worst overall defensive teams going tonight, ranked 7th and 8th in the league respectively. The Blazers, to take it a step further are 11th in the league for fantasy points allowed at the point. This provides Ricky Rubio, who has failed to reach value in three straight with some safety. Two of those last three were the Heat and the Spurs, both among the stingiest at the position so we can't hold that against him. Prior to that recent drop, he was on a nice run hitting 5-7X value in 7 of his last ten. The Timberwolves are riding a four game skid and if they hope to have any chance of climbing back in contention for that 8 spot, they need to turn things around quickly riding Rubio out there for 30-35 minutes a night.

Cory JosephCory Joseph FD - $4800 DK - $4800
Opponent - DAL
Proj Pts FD - 22.03 DK - 23.25
Is Kyle Lowry back yet? I'm not thrilled to be writing up Cory Joseph, it's been 15 games since Lowry went down, and Cory Joseph has paid value 6 times in that span. Tonight he finds himself going against the leagues toughest defense at the point, the Dallas Mavericks. So, why is he here? Well, we try to give you three options at each position, and on these smaller slates it's hard to find that third guy you have confidence in. I do not have much confidence in Cory Joseph, but for what it's worth, he's coming off an abysmal outing against the Heat, so folks may be off him and he can provide some separation, while we hope for a bounce back game. If he can just find the basket, while feeding some assists Double D's way, then maybe he can squeak out value.

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Shooting Guard

C.J. McCollumC.J. McCollum FD - $6900 DK - $7200
Opponent - MIN
Proj Pts FD - 32.16 DK - 34.54
While the DraftKings price on C.J. McCollum has remained relatively static, FanDuel has been a rollercoaster. I didn't roster him against the Knicks at $7800, and my condolences to anyone that did. Tonight however, he comes in at a hard to resist $6900FD while the $7200DK price is rather appealing itself. You'll see us pay a lot of attention to this game, while we don't have any of the faster paced teams going on the slate, these two teams at least present the best defensive match up for our purposes. C.J. has scored 20 or more points in 9 of his last 11 outings, and is locked in at minutes in the mid thirties. I will have him everywhere.

DeMar DeRozanDeMar DeRozan FD - $9200 DK - $8700
Opponent - DAL
Proj Pts FD - 41.88 DK - 43.82
Shooting guard, like every other position, gets rather dicey tonight, so why not just ride the hot hand of DeMar DeRozan. Double D has held the Raptors together in Kyle Lowrys absence, and has them currently sitting in fourth as they fight for seeding in the east. DeRozan has been playing on a whole different level this past week dropping 42 against the Bulls followed by 40 against the Heat while approaching double digit rebounds in both games and paying an average of 6.3X per dollar. The Matchup isn't ideal, but also isn't the worst of the evening. The Mavs are slightly better than league average at the position, and this game currently sits at a mere 1 point spread, so we would expect DeRozan should see full run.

Wesley MatthewsWesley Matthews FD - $4500 DK - $5100
Opponent - TOR
Proj Pts FD - 22.77 DK - 25.02
I warned you things got bad quick here. Wesley Matthews has been in a really bad place for the past couple of weeks. He's averaging just 28.9% from the field over his last 5 contests with 3 rebounds and 3.8 assists in that span. So why is he filling up this spot in the picks? Ultimately, it comes down to the price. He's spent the past 5 games at a season low on FanDuel, while his cost on DraftKings, while at times has been as much as $800 cheaper, is still sitting at a current price that can't be argued with. Plus, you have to think a seasoned player like Matthews is going to shake off whatever is holding him back eventually, and maybe tonight is the night he starts righting the ship. Look the whole night is going to be full of tough choices like this. Unfortunately we can't just lock in the DeRozans and McCollums at every position. Sometimes, we have to just take a deep breath and jump in.

Small Forward

Andrew WigginsAndrew Wiggins FD - $7000 DK - $7000
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 35.17 DK - 36.99
As I write this, there is still an hour to go before the Wolves face off with the Lakers, but that game not withstanding, Andrew Wiggins has been the model of consistency lately. In his last 5 contests he's seeing 36-39 minutes, and coming in just below 5X value at this salary. On a short slate with some tough match ups, that may be all we need in cash games. That salary for what it's worth has fallen steadily, down 1k from the start of the month, and 1700 from a month ago. Again, these are the two worse defenses on the night, which isn't saying they're even that bad but we make the best with what we're given when there are only 4 games going. The price is what has me loving Wiggins in this spot. On a full slate, I might say I'd like to see another 2-300 come off before I'd look his way, but all things considered, tonight, I'm happy to pull the trigger on Wiggins.

Otto PorterOtto Porter FD - $5800 DK - $6100
Opponent - CLE
Proj Pts FD - 28.38 DK - 29.77
Porter is in one of the better spots of the evening, going in to Cleveland to take on the Cavaliers. King James for all of his accolades is a lax defender, as the Cavs are the sixth worst team in the NBA at defending the three. Porter, who has struggled somewhat down the stretch, is priced at his lowest point since the first week of 2017. The minutes have been rather erratic lately, and he's only averaged 7.3 points in his last 3 games. I wish I had a spread on this game, but at the moment there isn't one. I'm guessing it shouldn't get too out of hand. In 9 out of 14 games this month that Porter has seen 30 or more minutes of action he's averaging 30.7 FanDuel points which is good for 5.29X value. As long as the minutes are there, Porter could be looking at a big game.

Harrison BarnesHarrison Barnes FD - $5600 DK - $5900
Opponent - TOR
Proj Pts FD - 27.79 DK - 29.62
Barnes, Like Wes Matthews above, has seen his price drop across the industry. While not at a season low, it's close enough on both sites, and unlike Matthews, who has been in a real rut as of late, Barnes has been more of a hit or miss play. In his last 7 games he has managed to pay value at this price three times. The minutes are there, he's averaged 35.1 over his last ten games, ultimately with Barnes it all just comes down to whether or not he's making his shots. With the minutes and the depressed pricing, in a game with a 1 point spread I'm willing to roll the dice on Barnes even against a tough on opposing threes Raptors team.

If you think the Knicks can manage to keep it close, Kawhi Leonard makes for an intriguing play.

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Power Forward

Kristaps PorzingisKristaps Porzingis FD - $6700 DK - $7100
Opponent - SA
Proj Pts FD - 31.26 DK - 33.26
So, who knows what's going on with Melo? First word comes that he's going to be seeing fewer minutes for the remainder of the season, then all of a sudden a knee injury keeps him out of Thursday nights game against Portland. What we do know, is regardless of him sitting, or seeing fewer minutes, the primary beneficiary will be Kristaps Porzingis. Zinger has crushed value in 4 of his last 5, and that with the added usage he stands to see has led to his price jumping $500 on FanDuel and $700 on DraftKings. I'm a little more in love with the FD price, whereas I just want to be friends on DK. Especially tonight with the Knicks going in to San Antonio. The Spurs are tough on opposing offenses, allowing 7% fewer points, 3% fewer boards, and 4% fewer assists to opposing 4s. For as hot as he has been, and with Melo's status being whatever it is, I'm willing to ride with Zinger tonight, especially on FanDuel where the price is more in line with what it should be.

Dirk NowitzkiDirk Nowitzki FD - $6000 DK - $6000
Opponent - TOR
Proj Pts FD - 27.5 DK - 29.05
Dirk is thriving with his recent move to the five, and while he doesn't see a ton of minutes these days, the minute he does see are consistently locked in and allow for him to provide ample performance. Outside of an inexplicable blowout at the hands of the Sixers(?) Dirk has seen 27-32 in six of his last 7 and has come in just above, or just below value in each of those. Toronto leans to the tougher side on opposing centers, but with Dirk being listed as a PF on FanDuel it allows us to utilize him at a tougher position, that we need to lock 2 players in at, so it all works out in the end.

Gorgui DiengGorgui Dieng FD - $5000 DK - $5400
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 26.38 DK - 27.44
Today we see a lot of MIN/POR, and a lot of recent inconsistent performnces, and right smack in the middle of that is Gorgui Dieng. In his last 4 games Dieng has had two 2X performances, and two 5.5+X performances. Dieng's upside has always been in his shooting. He's a defense first guy who will grab a ton of boards and knock a block or two, but when he's scoring double digit baskets, like he did last night against the Lakers that's where the money is. The Blazers are at their worst defending the power forward position, ranked third in the NBA behind only the Nets and the Lakers. They're allowing 3% more scoring, 6% more rebounds and 10% more assists to the position. Dieng could be looking at a 6X performance and I plan to have access to that when it happens.

Center

Jusuf NurkicJusuf Nurkic FD - $6700 DK - $7400
Opponent - MIN
Proj Pts FD - 33.62 DK - 35.65
If you noticed tonight's theme, this game has featured heavily at each position and center is no different as we will wrap up with the big's on both ends of the court. First up we have Jusuf Nurkic. It's quite a leap down from the top Center on the slate (see below) and Nurkic, the next man down. With that nearly $4000 discount, you're getting a player that while he may not flash the same upside is coming in as a nice value with plenty of implied safety. Nurkic has found new life in Portland, and while he has had a couple of games we would like to forget, and im sure he would as well, overall the transition has yielded positive results for both Nurkic and his new team. He's double doubled in 7 of his 16 games with the Blazers, including his last three straight. The minutes are pretty secure, sitting right around the 30 mark, and the Wolves are allowing 3% more scoring to opposing bigs. This is one of the few games I have an early read from Vegas on with only a 6 point spread, so we aren't too worried about the blow out here. On a night where value is tough to find, I'm a big fan of Nurkic in all formats.

Karl-Anthony TownsKarl-Anthony Towns FD - $10400 DK - $10700
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 50.2 DK - 52.73
Next up Karl-Anthony Towns. Towns has seen an average of 39 minutes over his last 4 games, and even with the Wolves recent struggles, he has shown no signs of slowing down. Hes scored over 30 points in 4 of his last six outings, double doubling in 5 of those and yet he's only paid value once in that span. Towns is another guy I just don't feel is a 10K player even though the sites keep running him out there as one. Portland for what it's worth is a league average defensive match up against opposing centers, and are allowing 5% more scoring and rebounds and 16% more blocks at the position. I may lean heavier on Nurkic in my cash games, but KAT should see some play in my tournament lines.

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