Basketball Picks Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 2/14/18
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Welcome to NBA Wednesday! The basketball gods have blessed up with 12 games tonight and each one deserves attention. We'll kick it off with one of the more explosive games on the slate in Golden State @ Portland. Damian Lillard and Stephen Curry will face off and both of them are firmly in play. They're both playing exceptionally well and neither are good defenders. Curry is a little more expensive and he has just a tad bit more upside if the game stays close. Lillard, who's less than $1k cheaper, has a 40 floor and 80 ceiling. If the Blazers are able to keep this game close, both of these guys are going to get over 50 fantasy points. Fortunately, it's in Portland, so Vegas gives them a shot at making it a game with just a 6.5 point spread. With a 227 total, we're looking for a ton of exposure to this contest.I will personally have more Lillard as I think he'll be under-owned, but I'll have a ton of both. If I'm paying up at PG, this game gets my attention.
If you're looking towards the mid-range, Kyle Lowry is as consistent as it gets. He's been a bit weird over the last weeks, but sits around 30 FP on almost every night. He put up 44 fantasy points last night in just 32 minutes against Miami. He played 34 minutes in the Raptors' last B2B set, so the minutes are no worry. The match-up is tremendous against a Bulls squad that ranks 21st against the PG position. Jerian Grant is not at all a good defender and Lowry will have his way on offense. With a 217 total and 6 point spread, Vegas likes how this game looks. It will stay close throughout and both teams will hit 100. Lowry is a lock for 30 fantasy points if it stays close and has the legitimate upside to get into the 60's. He's always an option in cash games and has plenty of tournament appeal on this slate, where he should lie around 10+ owned. He's not a guy I'll run out to grab, but I'll certainly be happy if he fits my roster construction, in any format.
Tyler Johnson FD - $4200 DK - $4800
Opponent - PHI
Proj Pts FD - 27.37 DK - 27.39
Tyler Johnson is still just too cheap. At just over $4k, you're barely looking for 20 fantasy points. Opposed from last game, Johnson saw 32+ minutes in 5 of the last 6 games. He's a huge part of this Heat offense and can be counted on to run a ton of the PG minutes each night. He gets a match-up against Philly tonight, who rank 27th against point guards. McConnell and Bayless are both extremely weak defenders and Johnson will have fun with either. He's projected for 27 fantasy points and while ambitious, certainly possible. This is a guy who can rack up the FP fast and this is a solid match-up. if he does continue to struggle a bit, you still won't be killed at his price. He's safe in all formats if you're needing a punt.
Jrue Holiday FD - $7900 DK - $8100
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 41.35 DK - 41.83
We all knew what Jrue Holiday would do with DeMarcus Cousins out of the lineup. We were completely right and he's putting up 35+ a night. He's been all over the 50's and seems to have changed his game quite a bit. He's taking initiative a lot more and still allowing AD to do his thing. We see a match-up between the Lakers and Pelicans tonight that is obviously going to bring intrigue. The first and possibly safest guy on the board is Jrue Holiday. Not only is he the main ball-handler for the Pelicans, but he's locked into 35+ minutes if the game is remotely close. He's just about $8k on both sites and needs you in the 40's for cash games on a big slate. Holiday is a lock for 35 fantasy points and can get to 50 with ease if the shot is falling. He's a guy I'll have close to 100%.
Donovan Mitchell FD - $8500 DK - $7900
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 40.95 DK - 41.23
If you're looking for another elite option at the position, there's no avoiding Donovan Mitchell. he's one of my favorite rookies of all-time and plays like he's been in the league for 7 years. He not only understands the NBA spacing, but he somehow knows the tendencies of guys he's never played against. You'll see exactly what I mean if you see him go to the rim and attack a C or PF. He's been taken care of a few times by the likes of Drummond and AD, but more often than not finds the bottom of the bucket. He's putting up 40 FP a night and thriving in every match-up out there. Tonight, he gets close to an optimal one with the Suns, who easily rank dead last against SG's. In fact, at 44 FPPG, they are 5 points higher than the 29th ranked Pelicans team. Devin Booker is also questionable, so it'll be the backups or a hindered Booker on him. Both Holiday and Mitchell are elite options in all formats and I will have as much as I possibly can of both. I certainly don't want to be on the other side of things.
Wayne Ellington FD - $3700 DK - $4100
Opponent - PHI
Proj Pts FD - 19.41 DK - 20.63
We can punt with another Heat in Wayne Ellington. With Wade back in town, Ellington has played 29 and 31 minutes. He's still shooting just as much and put up 25 and 15 in those games. He now gets a great match-up against a 76ers team that struggles against the perimeter. Additional to ranking 24th against SG's, they rank 29th against the 3-point line. It's where Ellington derives a whole of his upside from. His price is around $4k on both sites, needing you just 20 to make you more than happy. He was putting up 25+ a night a few weeks ago, and this is most definitely a solid match-up. Ellington is a solid option in all formats if you need a punt at SG. I'll have a hard time seeing him be the reason you lose any contest. Iven if he goes ice cold we're looking at 15 fantasy points.
Michael Beasley FD - $6800 DK - $6900
Opponent - WAS
Proj Pts FD - 38.27 DK - 38.66
Beasley is doing exactly what we expected with Kristaps POrzingis out of the lineup. He ended up at 39 minutes last game and put up his 3rd consecutive 30+ FP performance. He's playing huge minutes and grabbing a 20%+ usage rate. THJ is the only other guy on this team who dictates the ball, so there isn't much competition at all for said usage. He'll face off with Otto Porter and the Wizards tonight, who've struggled mightily against opposing SF's (26th in the league). Porter isn't necessarily a bad defender, but the Wizards play fast and have 2 great defenders on the perimeter, so the ball tends to get pushed inside. Beasley is a lock for another 30 fantasy points and will hit 50 very soon. This could be the night and I'll be all over him in every format.
Royce O'Neale FD - $4300 DK - $4300
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 25.64 DK - 25.54
The $4300 Royce O'Neal has seen 33 and 38 minutes in the last two. He's been going berserk with a 1.41 FP per minute over the last 10. He did put up a stinker against the Spurs, but so what? He faces the Suns tonight, who are just about the exact opposite. They like to play fast and so does O'Neal as a guy who gets his upside from peripherals. He's a great rebounder and can pass it pretty well. He's also a strong scorer, but prefers doing it in the open floor. The Suns play faster than anyone in this league and O'Neal should fit in for another 30+ solid minutes. At close to minimum price, there's no way he can hurt you. I love him in all formats and will have close to 100%. 30+ minutes against the Suns for a guy that touches the ball a ton is a done deal. Especially at a position like SF that isn't very deep tonight.
Jarell Martin FD - $3700 DK - $4300
Opponent - OKC
Proj Pts FD - 17.53 DK - 17.43
Jarell Martin has been at 30 and 24 minutes over the last 2 games. That's with Green and Rabb in. We're now looking at a questionable Jamychal Green, which could make things very interesting. We know the Grizzlies are comfortable playing Martin big minutes if they have to, but they may not if Green plays. Assuming Green sits out, you're looking at at least 32+ minutes in a solid match-up. The Thunder like to play fast and it's why we're looking at Grizzlies game with a 210+ total. Martin is extremely cheap on both sites and will still be fine if Green does play. The tourney upside is there to stay if Green is ruled out. Personally, I'll be at 100% ownership, but I'm not claiming that's a must.
Nikola Mirotic FD - $7500 DK - $7000
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 34.53 DK - 35.07
Nikola Mirotic is very happy that he's out of Chicago. Aside from getting his minutes constricted, he didn't have the freedom he does in this offense. The Pelicans have done a tremendous job at spacing the floor with Mirotic and it's helped both Jrue Holiday and Anthony Davis thrive. While it'd be great to see Demarcus Cousins on the floor, we know he's not going to be a Pelican for very much longer. He put up 60 and 40 fantasy points over the last 2 and is starting to find his concrete role in this offense.At $7k, you're looking for 35-40 fantasy points in cash games. He's already hit 60 twice in the last week, so who knows what his real upside is. The Lakers are an absolutely atrocious defense and to no surprise, rank 25th against power forwards. Mirotic is a solid option in all formats with a 35 point floor.
Blake Griffin FD - $9000 DK - $9000
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 44.4 DK - 45.6
The expensive option at PF is a pretty damn good one in Blake Griffin. He's fit into this Detroit offense quite nicely and is putting up 35-40 FP a night with ease. He has flashed the 50 upside and we'll see it even more as he settles into the offense. The Pistons face off with Atlanta tonight, who's average on paper against the position. Ilyasova and Collins will be the lucky duo and neither will have much fun. Ilyasova will be able to at least stay with him, but that'll change once under the rim and next to Andre Drummond. The simple answer is nobody will contain Griffin if this game stays close. He'll be in for another 40 FP and cash game value. His price is at $9k on both sites and I'm comfortable playing him in all formats. I do prefer paying down at PF, but do like Griffin if you have the extra funds and are comfortable with the rest of your lineup.
Andre Drummond FD - $10600 DK - $10600
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 57.33 DK - 57.98
If you've been playing NBA DFS this year, you already know plenty about this match-up. Against centers, the Hawks rank 29th. They've been dead last for most of the season and Dewayne Dedmon is no help. He's an atrocious defender under the rim and doesn't do a whole lot of anything. He'll be forced to tonight against Andre Drummond, who'll put up 20/20 otherwise. He's taken a huge step this year and can easily be considered one of the top big men in the entire league. He's putting up 45 fantasy points at a minimum and coming through with 55+ in most. His upside has been as high as anyone and you can play him at this price. He's obviously volatile to a degree, but no more than most big men superstars at this point. He's a lot smarter and not the same player from previous years in any shape, way, or fashion. Drummond is my favorite play at a center position you need to spend up at.
Anthony Davis FD - $11800 DK - $11600
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 61.79 DK - 61.71
Like I said, you're looking to pay up at center here. If you have the extra $2k to get to Anthony Davis, it may just be worth it. To start off, I'll personally be on Drummond. Davis is sitting in 50% of my tournaments. His price is obviously way up there, but he just put up 92 fantasy points 2 games ago, so you can't really say it's too expensive. He now sees a match-up against a Lakers team that we all know doesn't play any defense. Julius Randle has absolutely no shot of stopping AD and it's really just damage control to a degree. Davis is always a bit of a volatile player with his injury history, but you just can't predict it. He's putting up 50+ a night and can be banked on in all formats. Good luck tonight and feel free to comment below with any questions!
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- Blake Griffin: (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)