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Doug Norrie

NBA Trade Deadline Reactions - Daily Fantasy Implications

Well, the trade deadline has come and gone. Anthony Davis stayed put. The Bucks, Sixers and Raptors all upgrade their cores in an arms race to be Eastern Conference Finals winners. And a bunch of auxiliary pieces moved throughout the league over the last 24 hours. Let's take a look at the DFS implications of the trade deadline deals. (In no particular order.)

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J.R. SmithMarc Gasol
Traded to the Toronto Raptors
The Raptors finally get the center they’ve coveted to fill court space when facing the Joel Embiid’s (and possibly ultimately, DeMarcus Cousin’s) of the league. It’s unclear if Gasol will immediately step into the starting lineup, of if Toronto will continue the mix and match process they employed with Jonas Valanciunas when he was healthy. Their current starting lineup of Lowry, Green, Kawhi, Siakam and Ibaka playing 16.4 minutes per game with a 2.5 +/-. But when Jonas was healthy, that lineup (minus Ibaka) came in at a 5.7 +/-. There’s a ton to like about the flexibility this gives the Raptors. From a DFS standpoint, it will really depend on the starting lineup decision. Obviously, Gasol won’t play on Thursday. But moving forward there’s fantasy value in the C position with Gasol if he’s running with the starters. Jonas averaged a 13 point, seven rebound line in only 19 minutes per game when healthy. This will be very interesting moving forward.

J.R. SmithNikola Mirotic
Traded to the Milwaukee Bucks
Mirotic isn’t likely to join the starting unit, but will provide a perfect complement to Giannis’s game off the bench. Short of the Bucks sitting a key player (Middleton, Lopez, etc) Mirotic isn’t likely to see much movement in terms of fantasy value. He’ll be called on to shoot threes. He’s a 6’10 stretch four shooting 37% from three this season before the injury. Great add by the Bucks, but not a ton of DFS implications here. We could see further reduced usage on some of the Bucks' starters, though they rarely had a ton of DFS value outside of Giannis sitting a game.

J.R. SmithHarrison Barnes
Traded to the Sacramento Kings
The Kings had struggled to find exactly the right fit in their starting lineup this season, starting Bjelica and Shumpert together to, sometimes, diminishing returns. It will be interesting to see if the addition of Barnes moves Bjelica to the bench in favor of a Barnes/ Marvin Bagley starting lineup. Sacramento hasn’t shown themselves to be *trustworthy* in terms of their starters minutes (outside of Buddy Hield, and De’Aaron Fox) but Barnes could change that. From a DFS perspective, he was incredibly scoring dependent this season deriving 68% of his fantasy scoring from putting the ball in the basket. That’s up from last year’s 63%. I do think we see some of the other periphery stats bounce back in a new system and I hope this acquisition leads to more stable Kings’ rotation minutes.

For Dallas, they get back Justin Jackson and Zach Randolph in the deal (who'll be bought out). Jackson could begin to fill in some of the vacated wing minutes. Barnes does leave somewhere around 33-36 minutes on the table (in close games). With the Mavericks disincentivized to win, we could see plenty of minutes for Jackson.

J.R. SmithOtto Porter
Traded to the Chicago Bulls

J.R. SmithBobby Portis
Traded to the Washington Wizards

J.R. SmithJabari Parker
Traded to the Washington Wizards

Oof. Well on the one hand, all of these guys have at times, had plenty of fantasy relevance. Portis and Jabari can fill it up on a per minutes basis (with the defense being beyond suspect, borderline horrfiying really).

Porter will join a Bulls' team with a strategy of just letting every Tom, Dick and Harry chuck from the rafters whenevey feel like. The usage rates went something like this: Lavine (31%), Markkanen (24%), Portis (27%) and Parker (25%). It's not apples-to-apples because this was a team in flux, but removing the latter two from the mix should mean Porter at least maintains something like the 11 shots per game he was seeing with the Wizards this year (which was on it's way up with no Wall in the mix over the short term). I think the Bulls will play him plenty of minutes and still remain bad enough to effectively tank. I actually don't mind Porter's fantasy prospects going forward and it's helpful the Bulls jettisoned two players in this deal.

Meanwhile, the Wizards' situation is less than clear. Adding Portis and Parker to the mix really muddies the water on a team that is close to a total mess. I think Portis will join the starting lineup of Satoransky, Beal, Ariza and Bryant. He's not a comp to Porter and it would be more Ariza moving to the three, but Portis has never been afraid to take shots when given the opportunity and I do think he could maintain a steadier rebounding rate with this crew.

And finally, Parker is the real interesting one here. If he's the go-to piece of the second unit and played 25-26 minutes a night then he'd be able to sustain a mid-range (or higher) fantasy salary. It behooves the Wizards to just play him and see what they have. He doesn't impinge on any tanking ideas because the defense is so damn bad, but I do think we also see a slight bump in the rebounding rate going forward.

More reactions coming


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