Daily Fantasy NBA Basketball Picks for FanDuel and DraftKings - 3/1/18
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Welcome to NBA Thursday! We have 4 games on the slate with each game deserving equal attention. We'll kick things off at PG in the mid-range, where all 3 of our plays at the position lie. Let's start in Miami, where the Heat will host the Lakers in a game with a 216 total and 4 point spread. On the season, we're looking at a Lakers squad that ranks 23rd against point guards. We have Lonzo Ball back in our lives, so we can certainly trust that number more so than we could the past week with him out. Goran Dragic has been playing some of the best basketball of his season and just dropped a 60 burger 2 games ago. He typically sits around the 30 FP mark, which is perfectly fine at his sub-$7k tag. He's going to get his 330-34 minutes and this game is fully expected to stay close. He's an elite option in all formats and he'll be in the majority of my lineups.
De'Aaron Fox is a rookie, but doesn't play like one. He's composed as can be on the floor and has no problem controlling the offense. He's held a 1.21 FP per minute on the year and is now finally getting the 30+ minutes you need in cash games. His price is still very low on both sites and you have to be in love if you think he sees 30+ minutes once again. You then get to the match-up. The Nets rank dead last against PG's at 43 FPPG and it has a lot to do with the insanely weak interior defense. Fox is one of the more lethal downhill drivers you'll see in the league and Jarrett Allen will have no chance of stopping him. As long as you think this game stays close, Fox is an elite option in both cash games and tournaments.
Georgie Hill has done exactly what everyone expected and is now a huge part of this Cavs offense. It was only the most obvious thing ever that he would cement himself as one of LeBron's favorite. He plays very good defense, crashes the boards, and doesn't care about shooting all that much. He has no problem spreading the ball around it's why he stuffs the stat sheet so well. His price is just over $5k and you're only looking for 25 in cash games. The match-up against Philly and T.J. McConnell is immaculate, as they sit 27th in the league against PG's. Hill is a great way to pay down and you will likely be pleased in cash games. I'll have just about equal shares of Hill as I do Fox.
D'Angelo Russell FD - $7500 DK - $7300
Opponent - SAC
Proj Pts FD - 36.72 DK - 38.35
It's pretty great to see D'Angelo Russell fully back and hitting shots like he was at the beginning of the year. His price isn't too high yet and he's a guy you can bet on 35+ fantasy points no matter the game. Tonight, he faces off with a Kings team that doesn't play much defense at all. They also play the 7th fastest in the league and allow you to get up and down the floor without much defense. Russell has been over 30 minutes in 2 of the last 3 games and should be there again as long as the game stays close. With a 214 total and 1 point spread, Vegas certainly thinks it does and I'm not one to bet against them, This is a game we're all over and Russell is the top Net on the board.
Bogdan Bogdanovic FD - $5400 DK - $5800
Opponent - BKN
Proj Pts FD - 22.56 DK - 23.24
Buddy Hield FD - $5400 DK - $5500
Opponent - BKN
Proj Pts FD - 23.02 DK - 24.08
You don't have to love either of these guys, but the match-up is just too nice to ignore. Both Bogdanovic and Hield are getting substantial minutes and post 15%+ usage rates. Bogdanovic is much safer than Hield and you can easily bet on 25+ fantasy points. Hield is always the more volatile option as he relies on his jumper, but you can't be surprised if he gets hot and drops 40. The price is similar on both of these guys and I'm a fan of both. I think they also may come in as 2 of the lower owned Kings and either could be the key to tournaments. Shooting guard is an interesting spot tonight and I think we touched on some guys her who may not be so popular. I prefer Hood at the discount just slightly, but these 2 will be scattered throughout plenty of my lineups.
Rodney Hood FD - $4400 DK - $4400
Opponent - PHI
Proj Pts FD - 24.37 DK - 25.55
Rodney Hood made himself a huge part of that game against the Nets and ended up hitting the game-closing shot with less than a minute left. Over the last 4 games, Hood has picked up 28, 24, 27, and 30 minutes. The FP have been up and down, but you have to think the production will start flowing as long as he's on the court and picking up his chemistry with LeBron. Tonight, the match-up against Philly is very solid as they rank 22nd against the SG position. The focus will obviously be on Lebron, so you can expect Redick to be on Hood throughout the game. His price is VERY low and you're only looking for 25 in cash games and maybe 30 in tourneys. You don't have to love him, but you have to admit the value is there at just $4.4k.
LeBron James FD - $12200 DK - $11900
Opponent - PHI
Proj Pts FD - 55.31 DK - 56.42
LeBron is having some fun and I have no problem jumping on board every game until it stops. He's on some type of high with this new team and is playing huge minutes on a nightly basis. He's been over 50 fantasy points in each of the last 4 games and now gets a match-up against ben Simmons and the Philly 76'ers. This is a game the Cavs want to win and I can guarantee he sees over 35 minutes if the game stays close. His price is definitely high, but you can definitely pay up on this slate. There isn't much else at small forward and there is a lot of different value plays for just a 4-game slate. Vegas think this game stays close (CLE -3) and it will most defiitely be high-scoring with a 222 total. He's my star of the night and it'll be tough for me to get off of him in any format.
Josh Richardson FD - $6100 DK - $5800
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 30.06 DK - 29.74
If paying up for LeBron doesn't float your boat or you're just looking for a 2nd fiddle at the position, Josh Richardson is a phenomenal option. He's been an elite scoring threat for this Heat squad all-year long and has been great over the last few games. He got up to 37 minutes in 2 of the last 3 games and is seeing a 23% usage rate. He now sees a match-up against a Lakers squad that ranks 29th against small forwards. Brandon Ingram is lengthy and talented, but he's far from a good defender. Richardson will be open on the perimeter and will have no problem penetrating the weak interior that consists of guys like Brook Lopez and Julius Randle, who don't play much defense at all. The price is fair on both sites and Richardson makes for a solid pivot in both cash and tourneys. This is actually a game I like quite a bit from a stacking angle, especially if you think it stays close.
We haven't touched on any of the Sixers just yet, but these 2 are definitely in play and so is Embiid. Simmons and Saric are phenomenal plays against a Cavs team that has no real defense. LeBron will obviously give a lot of effort on Simmons, but he doesn't need to score to put up FP. He stuffs the stat sheet across the board and this game is expected to be high-scoring and extremely close (-3). Then you get to Dario Saric, who's a bit cheaper and is still locked into 30-35 minutes as long as it stays close. He has an extremely friendly match-up against a team that ranks just 25th against power forwards and is full of lackluster interior defenders. If you think this game stays close, both of these guys are in play in all formats.
Al-Farouq Aminu FD - $4800 DK - $4900
Opponent - MIN
Proj Pts FD - 21.37 DK - 21.49
Aminu is extremely cheap on both sites and is getting 30+ minutes on most nights. He gets a solid match-up tonight against a Minnesota squad that ranks 20th against power forwards. He's putting up 20+ on most nights and it only takes a few 3's in the corner to get things going at over 30 fantasy points. We haven't touched on this game much at all, but it does hold a 218 total with just a 4 point spread. Nobody is ever excited to roster Al-Farouq Aminu, but he should get it done tonight and his price is perfectly fine in all formats.
Hassan Whiteside FD - $7700 DK - $8000
Opponent - LAL
Proj Pts FD - 39.9 DK - 40.17
We've touched on a few Miami Heat guys already and will now jump on the big man. The big concern with Whiteside this year has been his minutes and injury problems. Finally, he's been at 33 minutes in 2 of the last 3 games. He now sees a very nice match-up against a Lakers team that can't defend the paint in the slightest. Vegas also thinks the game stays close, so it's safe to assume Whiteside will reach that 30-minute mark once again. He's still under $8k on both sites and is only needing you 40 fantasy points in cash games. As long as the game stays close, he will grab 40 fantasy points and has a 60+ FP ceiling. With him being back to full health, I'm fine with Whiteside in both cash games and tournaments.
Willie Cauley-Stein FD - $7500 DK - $7100
Opponent - BKN
Proj Pts FD - 35.5 DK - 34.47
The Kings are another team we've already touched on a bunch and we'll close it out with their length big man in Willie Cauley-Stein. WCS is finally rounding out as an NBA player and he's putting up 30-40 fantasy points in most games. He sees the best possible match-up in the league against the Nets, who rank dead 30th against centers by a healthy margin. Jarrett Allen is an atrocious defender and WCS will put up 40 fantasy points if the game stays close. He's clearly part of the future for Sacramento and nobody has safer minutes in a close game. If Whiteside doesn't do it for you, WCS is an elite pivot in all formats.