Hello, everyone! bathrobeDFS here with your daily basketball article. First, I will breakdown my lineup for yesterday’s main slate. Then I will go over tonight’s slate from the perspective of a one lineup player on Draftkings. If you have any additional questions or want to see guaranteed updates in regards to breaking news- I provide additional updates, information, and stats on my twitter @bathrobeDFS. Feel free to throw me a follow cause it’s much easier and more timely to provide updates over that medium. It also should go without saying, this is just a preliminary analysis of the slate: everything can change throughout the day, so make sure you are staying on top of any and all injury news and change your lineups accordingly! I am always available to help with any questions there, as well, even if I can’t do a second article. Let’s get started with the Review!
Yesterday In Review:
***My Lineup-*** -
Name | Price | DKP | Value | Proj Own | Real Own | Diff
Jrue | 8700 | 49.25 | 5.7x | 16.5%| 11.6%| 4.9
Bryn Forbes | 4000 | 23.25 | 5.8x | 12.7%| 14.2%| 1.5
Lyles | 3700 | 34 | 9.2x | 0.4%| 5%| 4.6
Plumlee | 4100 | 40.25 | 9.8x | 27.6%| 37.5%| 9.9
Jokic | 10500 | 30.25 | 2.9x | 13.7%| 13.2%| 0.5
CP3 | 6600 | 38.25 | 5.8x | 7.2%| 20.7%| 13.5!!!!
Sato | 5600 | 37.25 | 6.7x | 13.9%| 21.7%| 7.8
Ayton | 6800 | 35.75 | 5.3x | 8.5%| 16.5%| 8
**Total** | 50000 | 288.25 | 5.765x| | |
***Best Possible Lineup-*** - [Using the free lineup rewind tool on fantasycruncher](https://www.fantasycruncher.com/lineup-rewind/draftkings/NBA/), I find the highest possible lineup that could have been played.
Name | Price | DKP
Jordan McRae | 3100 | 36.25
Huerter | 4400 | 35.25
Stan Johnson | 3600 | 40.75
Plumlee | 4100 | 40.25
Bagley | 5500 | 55
Harden | 12900 | 72
Green | 4900 | 42.75
Giannis | 10900 | 67.75
**Total** | 49400 | 390
So, I don’t like tooting my own horn but I have been really crushing my analysis lately. I hope you all have been paying attention. This is another day that a majority of my picks did exactly what I said they would do. Jrue, my pick of the day, was someone I said would have triple-double upside yesterday. He finished 1 assist short of a 3x2. I also said Satoransky was one of my favorites. He didn’t get the end game run for some reason, but he was also close as hell to a 3x2 yesterday. I also locked in Ayton. Matched up against Faried, I saw him as having an easy path to a 2x2 if he got the minutes, and he could get a 25/15 if he could stay out of foul trouble. After that, it came down to combining my analysis with injury news and ownership projections. I had Giannis for awhile, but he was projected as the most popular player on the slate. With the news that everyone on the Nuggets would be out, I went down to Jokic. This also let me lock in Plumlee who will not fail in that spot (especially given the height issues I talked about last night). Finally, it let me pivot from Frank Jackson, who I did not want to play, to Lyles. I told everyone on twitter they should immediately pivot off of Frank and get Lyles in. I hope they listened. This left me 2 slots. I had a lot of choices, clearly. After seeing that CP3, who I had projected for about 36 DKP and 6x+ value if all went well, was only supposed to be 8% owned, I decided to lock him in (since I assumed Monte Morris would be super popular as well). This left me 4000 and, with everyone on the other Spurs, I wanted to take the chance on Bryn Forbes who should be getting 30-35+ minutes, and have a good chance for a 2x2 with all the ballhandling he’d be forced into.
The Daily Slate:
What an… interesting… slate. I do these breakdowns from time to time when something about a slate stands out. In this one, it is the pace down spots for so many teams. I look at pace over their last 15 games. The first game is the Clippers (13th) going against the Hornets (21st). Next is the Celtics (16th) going against the Cavs (25th). Also the Lakers (4th) go into Indy to face the Pacers (23rd). Then there is the Knicks (18th) hosting the Pistons (30th). Later on, the Wolves (14th) will be going against the Grizzlies (29th) and the Thunder (1st) will host the Magic (24th). The last game of the night, the Blazers (17th) host the Heat (28th). Every game I listed has at least one team at, or near, the bottom of the pace rankings. Most of the time, they are paired up with, at best, a middling team in that department. All of this is reflected in the O/Us for these games. The last week or so, we have seen a ton of games in the 230s with a couple getting to the 240 mark. Tonight, there are only 3 games that are in the 220s, none over 228. Two of the games are 205 and under. The one game I left out here is going to be the gold standard tonight for a variety of reasons and that is the Raptors (12th) going into Philly (5th). This, luckily for us, is also the game with that 228 O/U. And, even better for us, the spread is -4.5. It’s rare that one game stands out so much, but that’s what I’m seeing. If the ownership isn’t highly focused on this game today, make sure yours sure as fuck is, cause that is how you will make money.
Ok, enough for the intro. But that will inform everything else we talk about today, so might as well do an overview. Now let’s get down to business.
Matchup Specific Ceiling (MSC) Pick of the Day
Matchup Specific Ceiling is a “quasi-metric” I use to make decisions. If you haven’t read my explanation, please check out this link right here
The explanation begins in the “injury/lineup news” section about halfway down.
In this section, I will pick the player who has fewest factors preventing him from reaching his ceiling, considering spread, pace, O/U, defense, usage, teammate health, and other factors.
Embiid - Looking at the overview above, it would make the most sense to pick someone from this game. There are a couple of really good options here. Specifically, Kawhi (9300), who would easily find value today if his salary was 1000 higher (especially with Lowry out). But as much as I love Kawhi, and as much as he will be the 2nd person I lock into my lineups today, the first one for me is Embiid (10500). The Raptors will be starting: FVV, an excellent defender; Green, the #1 ranked SG; Kawhi, an excellent defender; Siakim, a top 10 ranked PF for DRPM; and Serge Ibaka, the 3rd worst Center in the NBA. This is mirrored in their defensive numbers as well, where Toronto is above average against every position, but much weaker against Center than anything else. So that should tell you loads about how the Sixers are going to need to attack this game. With, and through, Embiid. And he will be more than happy to oblige here. We have seen Simmons (8600) refuse to take shots unless he can get to the rim and the Raptors D should be good enough to keep him at bay a large portion of the game (not that he isn’t a serious 3x2 threat tonight, because he is, and I have no issue playing him tonight as much as you can). Butler (7500) gets aggressive when he can, but he should be seeing Kawhi most of the night (on both ends of the court), which should reduce his production. Redick (5500) will be back from his rest but the Raptors aren’t a team weak against the perimeter (see: Green, Danny) which means he will have a hard time doing what he needs to to produce today. Lastly, the Sixers will be without Wilson Chandler meaning that, given the fact the Raptors will be starting Siakam at the 4, I assume the Sixers will go with Muscala (3400) or Bolden (3300). Both are going to be a couple of the best punts tonight regardless of who starts. We also need to remember the Sixers love running Ben at the 4 and letting TJ (3500) play the point as often as they can. Corey Brewer’s 2nd 10-day contract expired, making him a free agent so he won’t be a threat to eat into anyone’s minutes (unless they give him a full contract tomorrow). Again, this all points to the fact that they will need Embiid to do the lion’s share of the work tonight and, wouldn’t you know it, he’s 2nd in the NBA in usage to James Harden. For what it’s worth, the only other player in this game in the top 50 is Kawhi who is 15th, another reason I will be locking him in here as well. But, if I had to only choose one, it is Embiid.
Situations to take advantage of (in no particular order):
The Return of Cody Zeller - Kemba Walker (8700) is a completely different player with Zeller (4000) and, after missing about a month, Zeller is probable for tomorrow. The numbers speak for themselves, and plenty of analysts have gone into why Kemba can’t produce the same with either Biyombo or Hernangomez at the 5, and that, without the PnR efficiency Zeller provides, Kemba struggles to find his shot. Well, wouldn’t you know it, the Clippers, who are, by far, the worst team in the NBA against Centers is coming into town for Zeller’s return. His injury was a broken hand, as well, meaning he should have had no problem keeping in shape and shouldn’t see the same limitations as someone who is coming off a leg/muscle injury. I know there are quite a few Cs out there tonight. Well I am ending my night tonight with Embiid and Zeller. Given the fact that Kemba has been foaming at the mouth to get Zeller back, I also think it would behoove you to get back on the Kemba train. The 50DKP every game Kemba you remember from the beginning of the season until around Xmas is back, starting tonight, and they get to get back into shape against the awful, awful Clippers D.
Hornets Weakness against SG - With Zeller back to shore up the Hornets horrid Center D, the only major deficiency they have is at the SG spot. Lucky for us, the 2 players that man this position for the Clippers happen to be one of the hottest on team, and the team’s usage leader. I, of course, refer to PatBev (5200) and LouWIll (7300). This game has the 2nd highest O/U on the slate, and is projected to stay really close. If you are not going to be all over the Sixers/Toronto game, this is, by far, the best second option. Given the fact both of these guys can get you 7-8x value tonight, I think they deserve serious consideration regardless.
Kyrie is OUT, Baynes is OUT, Williams is Questionable - Vegas knows that Kyrie is out tonight and they still expect the Celtics to easily blow this game out. I can’t imagine they are wrong. The Cavs are pure awful. On top of that, Osman, their hottest player, is out. And they just traded Rodney Hood. However, just because this game has a spread of BOS -12.5 doesn’t mean there are no good plays. Just the opposite, it lets us get a whole lot of great punts who will get both backup minutes and a lot of backup run. My favorite player in this situation is, without exception, Jaylen Brown (4900) who should get to the 40DKP range tonight. He is another absolute lock for me without any question. With Rozier (6700) priced something insane, and with this game getting out of hand anyway, I think we have another Wanamaker (3100) game. If you are looking for a near minimum punt, this is a great time to do it. With the frontcourt injuries, I will also be all over Theis (3500) tonight. I would be shocked if he wasn’t one of the highest owned players tonight, and I will eat all of that chalk up like I had a sour stomach. On the other side of this, I will be interested in the people who will get mop up duty. Namely Nance (5800), Clarkson (5200), and Nwaba (3600) who should hopefully get back into the 20s in terms of minutes with Cedi out.
Rondo and Lebron - I will point this out as often as I can- Rondo (6800) and Lebron (10700) work symbiotically. That means they have a positive correlation. That means they work well together and can help bring up each other’s production. While this is a massive pace down spot for the Lakers, this is still one of the games in the middle today with a 215.5 O/U and a great spread of LAL -3. Remember that time that both Lebron and Lonzo got 3x2s the same game? These 2 can legit do that every game. It doesn’t matter how good Indy’s D is. They don’t have Oladipo and that’s going to hurt them. I will have both of these guys (both together and apart from one another) in my player pool every game they play. I suggest you do too. Oooooh! Keep Lebron in your player pool! I could boil the water I use to cook my noodles with the heat from that take alone. But seriously. Rondo and Lebron, every game.
The Lakers Suck Against Centers and PG - With Lonzo Ball not playing, the Lakers are really bad at defending against a couple of positions here. This means that I will focus my attention here on Collison (6400) who hasn’t been priced up enough for his extra role post-Oladipo. I will also have a ton of interest in both Turner (6500) and Sabonis (5600). I prefer Turner since he would get the most guaranteed minutes, but Sabonis will get to line up at C as well as against Kuzma who is the 5th worst PF defender in the NBA (which also makes Thad Young (6100) an interesting play that I find too expensive). This is one of the biggest pace up spots on the slate. Make sure you take advantage of that where you can.
Rose, Teague, Tyus OUT - Two games ago, I was wary of playing Bayless (5400). The Wolves has just signed Isaiah Canaan and I was unsure of how they would use him. Well the fact I didn’t even put his name in bold should tell you everything you need to know about that. Two games ago, just like this game tonight, Rose, Teague, Tyus Jones, and RoCo were out. Two games ago, MIN also played against MEM. I often describe the Grizzlies as a black hole for Centers and they showed it, holding KAT to 32 DKP in 26 min, forcing him into 5 fouls. I have also said, on multiple occasions, the best/only way to attack the Grizzlies is with PG. Well, Bayless is going to have to do everything he can tonight, just like he would have had to Two games ago. Against the slowest team in the NBA, with the best D, Two games ago, Bayless put up 19p/12a/7r/2s on the way to 51.75DKP. And if you don’t think he can do that again tonight, you are fooling yourself.
Jerryd Bayless Starting for MIN - The one thing that Jerryd Bayless starting means, for sure, is that Mike Conley (8200) gets to play almost the entire game against Jerryd Fucking Bayless. Hello!! Thank you!! Two games ago, he went 11-20, on the way to 26p/8a/5r/2s and 49.25 DKP. But the thing we need to realize is that, even if we ignore the matchup specific data from 2 games ago, Conley has been on fire lately. Excluding the one game he missed due to a knee injury, Conley has DKP totals of 54, 49.25, 48, 48, 42, 36.5, and 46 over his last 7 games. With the injuries and trades, it is not surprised the Grizzlies have needed Conley to step up, and he will be able to do so again when he gets to take on Jerryd Bayless.
Khem Birch - Mo Bamba has been declared out. This game has the 3rd highest total on the night, at 224.5, but also the 2nd highest spread, with OKC 10 point home favorites. These teams met up 3 games ago in Orlando and, while the Magic brought it back, OKC had a steady lead most of the game, and, when it mattered, went on a 23-5 run in the 4th quarter to pull away before the starters had a chance to get back in. Oh and, by the way, this was the game Stephen Adams didn’t play. I expect it to be much, much worse tonight for the Magic. What does all this mean?? It means I am locking in Khem Birch (3100) tonight. Who the fuck is Khem Birch? Someone you will play tonight and thank me for on twitter tomorrow. Enjoy! (If you want a normal play, go for Aaron Gordon (6200) who should be priced around 7500 for this matchup).
Dennis Schroder - I don’t understand how Schroder (4800) hasn’t seen his price rise back over 5k considering his last 3 games saw him put up 32, 32, and 33.75 DKP. That’s damn close to 7x at his current salary. And none of those games were blowouts, which this should be, which would give Schroder extra run here. I love him tonight, I think he pushes 30 minutes and 35-40 DKP.
Situations to be careful of(in no particular order):
The New Knicks - I don’t know what the Knicks are doing. But I know this- Jordan (6200) is one of the best defenders in the NBA. Until he joined the Knicks, the only good defender they had was Vonleh (5200) who is now the starting PF. What this means is that I am going to have a really, really hard time playing either Griffin (8800) or Drummond (8300) tonight. On top of that, this game has a 205 O/U with a Pistons team that has been playing incredibly slow. The one thing that hasn’t changed at all is that Knox (5300) is one of the worst defenders in the NBA and he is starting at SF and putting in a bunch of minutes. That means that, if I’m going to find interest anywhere on the Pistons team today it will be with Bullock (4200). If there is word the new Knicks will get extra run tonight, I will have a lot of interest in both Jordan and DSJ (5700). Otherwise, DSJ is just too expensive for getting 26 minutes.
Situations to monitor:
Nurkic QUESTIONABLE - The Blazers haven’t played, somehow, since January 30th against the Utah Jazz. Which seems like a hell of a long break. But, regardless, they apparently also let their beat writers go on vacation because there has been no word on the status of Nurkic for this matchup. The last bit of news was that he was going to miss the game 6 days ago. So we'll just have to wait until after the morning shootaround to find out his status. If Nurkic (8100) plays, he will see a tough matchup against Whiteside, but he has shown lately matchups don’t really bother him. They will need his height, and they should be able to push his minutes this game, given his prolonged break. It would also mean I have more interest in Lillard (8900) who will be able to use Nurkic to work around Miami’s stern Defense. I would also imagine that the Heat would have to give more minutes to Whiteside (6900) but his price is just too high, and his minutes too volatile, for me to trust him in anything but GPPs. If Nurkic misses, I will be very grateful for the Meyers (3500) and Collins (3400) punts, but will not look at much more from this game. If Hood (3500) suits up, he also makes for a really, really interesting punt. Also, call it a gut call, but I really like Olynyk (3900) here for some reason.
I am falling asleep and that’s everything, so that works out nicely. Best of luck today everyone!!!