Basketball Lineups Daily Fantasy Expert Advice
FanDuel NBA Picks and DraftKings NBA Picks - Friday, 2/26/21
It sounds crazy to say, but we're almost halfway through the season. It feels like last week when Los Angeles won the bubble title, but here we are deep into another season. In any case, we're looking to finish these last two weeks off strong, and this Friday slate is another fantastic one. We have nine games in total, beginning at 7:30ET, so let's get to it!
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Curry was really frustrated when he couldn't play the Hornets last week, and he'll surely be hungry to roast them here. We say that because he grew up in Charlotte and has traditionally torched them throughout his career. In fact, Curry is averaging 27.2 points, 6.8 assists, and 1.3 steals en route to a ridiculous 124 offensive rating in 16 meetings with them. That shows us just how motivated he is to face his childhood team, and that's scary for a guy who's already playing at an MVP level. Chef has at least 42 DraftKings points in 12 of his last 13 games, averaging 51 fantasy points per game in that span.
Talk about a guy who's cruising right now. Fox has been one of the best point guards in the NBA over the last month, averaging 25.4 points, 3.4 rebounds, 8.6 assists, and 1.2 steals over his last 17 games. That's obviously absurd, and it doesn't even include a Thursday gem in which he provided 29 points and 11 assists against a top-ranked Knicks defense. This Pistons defense is far from top-ranked, sitting 18th in defensive efficiency. All of that makes it hard to believe that Fox remains below $8,000, making him one of the best high-end values on the slate.
Goran Dragic just returned from injury and is too cheap below $5K.
With Derrick Rose in New York, Delon Wright injured, and Blake Griffin sitting, Jackson is the focal point of this offense. In fact, he's got a 31 percent usage rate since the Wright injury, playing 31 minutes a night in that span. That monster role has led to him scoring at least 24 DK points in 13-straight games, averaging over 30 fantasy points per game in that stretch. That alone makes it hard to believe he's sitting around $6K on both sites, and we haven't even discussed this matchup. The Kings just allowed 141 points to the Knicks on Thursday and currently own the NBA's worst defensive rating.
Luguentz Dort FD - $4400 DK - $4800
Opponent - ATL
Proj Pts FD - 23.97 DK - 24.77
With Al Horford, Hamidou Diallo, and George Hill all out of the lineup, Dort should be looking at a sizable role here. That's already been the case recently anyway, averaging 23 DK points per game in 34 minutes a night over his last 11 outings. That might not sound too good, but 23 fantasy points from a sub-$5K player is all you can ask for, especially with a guy who's expected to see an expanded role. Atlanta's 22nd-ranked defense certainly doesn't sway us from using Dort either.
LeBron James FD - $10500 DK - $10700
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 55.05 DK - 59.39
We made a bit of a folly with an LBJ recommendation on Wednesday, but we're going right back to the well. We underestimated the blowout potential in that matchup with Utah, but that shouldn't be an issue here. We say that because the Lakers are a 4.5-point favorite against a bad Trail Blazers defense. Portland currently ranks 27th in points allowed and 29th in defensive efficiency. That's scary against LeBron anytime he plays, but he's got a 34 percent usage rate with Anthony Davis off the floor. That bump in usage has led to a 51-point average over his last 16 games, and that looks like the floor in such a tasty matchup.
Gordon Hayward FD - $7100 DK - $6700
Opponent - GS
Proj Pts FD - 38.98 DK - 39.84
Hayward's price has been steadily dropping with LaMelo Ball's emergence, but it's getting to a point where we can't pass up. We're still talking about a guy who's averaging 38 fantasy points per game for the year, which alone makes him a good value around $7K. That's the guy we've seen in his last two games, scoring at least 34 DK points in both of those. That price drop looks even more intriguing when you consider this matchup, with Golden State owning a 19th OPRK against opposing SFs while ranked 20th in points allowed.
Domantas Sabonis FD - $9900 DK - $10400
Opponent - BOS
Proj Pts FD - 48.33 DK - 50.52
Sabonis has been a monster all season, and he probably deserved another All-Star appearance. In any case, he's been showing why he deserved votes recently, scoring at least 45 DraftKings points in five-straight games. Sabonis is also providing a 57-point average in that span, which is easily one of the highest totals in the NBA. While facing Boston might worry some people, they've actually been destroyed by big men all season. That's no surprise when you look at their personnel, particularly with Sabonis averaging 16.5 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 6.5 assists against them. He did that despite shooting 43 percent and if he gets hot, look for Sabonis to post similar averages but get that point total closer to 30!
Patrick Williams FD - $5000 DK - $5100
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 29.07 DK - 29.72
Williams is by no means an exciting DFS pick, but he's been too reliable to be this cheap. In fact, he's been a 6X machine over the last two weeks, scoring at least 27 fantasy points in five of his last six games. That's an incredible floor from a $5K player, and he should continue to play big minutes with Otto Porter and Lauri Markkanen sidelined. The matchup against Phoenix is worrisome, but Williams won't be benched if this game gets out of hand with the rookie needing to play as many minutes as he can handle.
With Horford already ruled out, look for Isaiah Roby to get another start.
Wendell Carter Jr. FD - $6200 DK - $5900
Opponent - PHO
Proj Pts FD - 33.26 DK - 33.01
Strangely, Wendell continues to be disrespected on these DFS sites. That's why he's been a regular in these articles, and he's likely to remain in it until he gets closer to $7K. We say that because he's averaging 30 DK points per game for the season and is steadily getting better. In fact, Carter has at least 42 DK points in back-to-back games, playing 32 minutes a night over his last three fixtures. That increased role is big news for a per-minute producer like this, and it should continue with Markkanen and Porter sidelined. This happens to be one of the positions you can exploit Phoenix, too, with Deandre Ayton being a subpar defender.
Tristan Thompson FD - $4800 DK - $4700
Opponent - IND
Proj Pts FD - 21.17 DK - 21.29
Much like the Williams play, this is not going to excite you. In any case, Thompson has been way too productive to be sitting below $5K on both sites. The big man has now scored at least 23 DK points in six-straight games, averaging over 28 fantasy points per game in that span. That's hard to find from someone this cheap, and his rebounding makes him as reliable as anyone. We obviously don't mind that Indiana surrenders the eighth-most fantasy points to opposing centers either. In their two meetings this season, TT is averaging 10.5 points and 9.0 rebounds per game.
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- Stephen Curry: AP Images