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Joel Bartilotta
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FanDuel NBA Picks and DraftKings NBA Picks - Thursday, 3/4/21

This marks the final day before the All-Star break! If Wednesday was any indication, this slate should be absolutely nuts. We literally had two Pistons record triple-doubles, and T.J. McConnell pick up nine first-half steals yesterday! Yeah, that's where we're at right now in the NBA. In any case, we're looking to end the first half of the season strong, so let's get into this final slate!

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Point Guard

De'Aaron FoxDe'Aaron Fox FD - $8300 DK - $8900
Opponent - POR
Proj Pts FD - 46.42 DK - 47.79

Fox didn't get much All-Star consideration because of how chaotic the Kings are, but this guy has played at an All-Star level for over a month now. In fact, Fox has scored at least 32 DraftKings points in 20 straight games, averaging 25.4 points, 3.4 rebounds, 8.8 assists, and 1.1 steals in that span. That equates to a 44-point average, making him a bargain below $9K on both sites. The best part about this is the matchup, though, with Portland ranked 28th in defensive efficiency while surrendering the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing PGs. In their last meeting, De'Aaron collected 29 points, six rebounds, and six assists if you needed any more incentive.

Malcolm BrogdonMalcolm Brogdon FD - $6700 DK - $8000
Opponent - DEN
Proj Pts FD - 41.67 DK - 42.94

It's pretty insane that Brogdon is down to $6,700 on FanDuel. That's downright criminal, with the $8K price tag on DraftKings being more indicative of how good this guy is. We're talking about a blossoming point guard who's averaging 40 fantasy points per game, which is right on par with what he's been doing over the last eight games. That makes the recent price drop hard to understand, especially in a matchup like this. Denver currently sits 16th in total defense while owning a 23rd OPRK against opposing point guards. They're also a Top-5 team in terms of pace, and that only adds to Brogdon's intrigue.

If you have the salary, Damian Lillard should wreak havoc on a terrible Kings defense.

Shooting Guard

Paul GeorgePaul George FD - $7900 DK - $8600
Opponent - WAS
Proj Pts FD - 43.65 DK - 45.64

If Kawhi Leonard misses this game, PG13 is the best play on the board. Even if Kawhi does suit up, George is way too cheap, around $8,000 on both sites. We say that because he's averaging 43 fantasy points per game and has the best matchup in fantasy basketball. Not only do the Wizards rank 27th in defensive efficiency, but they also play the fastest pace in the NBA. That forces opponents to go off on them every single night, and George will surely thrive in such a tasty matchup after dropping 48 DK points on Monday. In his one game against Washington earlier this season, PG dropped a 45-spot, despite playing fewer than 29 minutes.

Luguentz DortLuguentz Dort FD - $3900 DK - $5200
Opponent - SA
Proj Pts FD - 23.82 DK - 24.68

While we can't necessarily recommend Dort on DK at $5,200, this $3,900 price tag on FanDuel is silly. We say that because he's already got a 21-point average for the season, which is 5x+ value on its own. The reason we like him here is the fact that this is the second half of a back-to-back set. That could force Al Horford and Shai Gilgeous-Alexnader into a resting situation, forcing Dort into more minutes and more ball-handling duties. In the most recent four-game stretch that SGA missed, Dort averaged 30 fantasy points per game in one of the best stretches of his career. San Antonio is a solid matchup, too, with the Spurs surrendering the third-most fantasy points to opposing SGs this year.

If Jimmy Butler is out again, look for Tyler Herro to get some big usage.

Small Forward

Michael Porter Jr.Michael Porter Jr. FD - $6600 DK - $6800
Opponent - IND
Proj Pts FD - 33.48 DK - 33.67

Porter was a huge disappointment when he came off the COVID list, but he's playing some of the best basketball of his career right now. Injuries to JaMychal Green, Gary Harris, and Paul Millsap have really opened things up for Porter, entering this matchup with four double-doubles in his last five games. More importantly, he's averaging 30 DK points per game across 32 minutes a night in his last eight outings. That's the role we've been waiting for, and that even includes two blowouts where he was limited to 25 minutes or less. Indiana isn't necessarily a scary defense either, ranked 20th in points allowed.

RJ BarrettRJ Barrett FD - $5900 DK - $6000
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 29.32 DK - 30.13

Barrett is one of those guys that provides value through sheer volume. While it's not going to look pretty, he accumulates fantasy points at ease. It's easy to see why when you see that he's averaging 33.3 minutes and 14.3 shots per game. That's on par with many of the $8K players, allowing him to average 30 DraftKings points per game. We really love this matchup, though, with Detroit surrendering the most fantasy points in the NBA to opposing SFs. That was on full display when R.J. dropped 36 fantasy points on them in their one meeting earlier this year. Both of these clubs are also shorthanded, and that adds even more value to Barrett's name.

If Kawhi is out, don't forget about Nicolas Batum.

Power Forward

Bam AdebayoBam Adebayo FD - $8700 DK - $8800
Opponent - NO
Proj Pts FD - 43.97 DK - 45.45

Bam screwed up about every lineup I made on Tuesday, but that was an anomaly. Before that, Adebayo scored at least 44 fantasy points in each of his previous eight games, scoring at least 35 DK in all but five games this season. That makes his Tuesday dud nearly impossible to understand, but he'll surely bounce back in a stupendous matchup like this. New Orleans currently ranks 26th in points allowed and 29th in defensive efficiency. We also love that they rank sixth in pace and cater to an athletic big like Bam. If Adebayo sits, don't forget about Precious Achiwua!

Isaiah RobyIsaiah Roby FD - $4600 DK - $5400
Opponent - SA
Proj Pts FD - 22.07 DK - 21.8

With Al Horford likely sitting out in the second half of a B2B, Roby should be in line for another start. What's scary is that he's been beasting off the bench recently, collecting 20 points, 17 rebounds, eight assists, and five steals over the last two games with Big Al on the floor. Let's look at his starts now, with Roby averaging 27 DK points per game across 28 minutes in his 11 starts this year. All of that makes it hard to believe he's hovering around $5K, making Roby one of the best values around. The icing on the cake is the matchup, with San Antonio surrendering the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing centers, playing extremely shorthanded right now.

We were off on Chris Boucher's minutes on Wednesday, but a blowout loss against Detroit will hopefully get him into the starting lineup for this shorthanded Raptors team.


Nikola JokicNikola Jokic FD - $11600 DK - $10900
Opponent - IND
Proj Pts FD - 60.51 DK - 62.54

Is it possible to fade this guy right now? The MVP candidate is currently leading the NBA with a 60-point average on DraftKings, and he's been even better recently! In fact, Joker has at least 56 fantasy points in 10 of his last 11 games, scoring at least 75 fantasy points in back-to-back outings. That's hard to fathom, and it appears he has a 60-point floor with all of these Nuggets out of the lineup. In terms of the opponent, it doesn't really matter with Jokic because he's the most unique big man we've ever seen.

Nerlens NoelNerlens Noel FD - $5500 DK - $5600
Opponent - DET
Proj Pts FD - 33.65 DK - 29.92

Noel has quietly been really good filling-in for Mitchell Robinson, and if you've been reading these articles, you know we've been on this train. We actually said in his first start that he'd eventually get north of $6K, and we're fast approaching that time. The big man has scored at least 21 fantasy points in all nine starts he's made, seeing his production steadily increase. That's clear when you see that he's played at least 37 minutes in three-straight, making him impossible to avoid behind a workload like that. The Detroit matchup might be the best part of this, though, with the Pistons owning a 26th OPRK against opposing centers this season. That was evident when Noel dropped a season-best 36 DK points on them just last week.

Jakob Poeltl has regularly played 30-plus minutes as the Spurs started center, definitely putting him in play around $6K.


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