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:
The Bathrobe vs. Pocket_Saand Head-To-Head Series:
He is Cash. I am GPP. Let’s keep track of how a daily head-to-head stack up.
Victory!! Finally!! 283.5 - 268
Overall Record: 1-3
My Lineup- - This is the one lineup I enter into GPPs
NamePriceDKPValueProj OwnReal OwnDiffT. Johnson390030.257.8x5%21.3%16.3Donovan890036.54.1x11.6%9.3%2.3Durant1010046.754.6x21.5%9.1%12.4Tobias710041.755.9x9.3%11.1%1.8Vuc940050.255.3x17.2%20.1%2.9Tyrone Wallace310092.9x2.2%0.4%1.8Belinelli380033.758.9x3.3%9.4%6.1Zizic3700338.9x59.3%59.3%0!!!!Total50000281.255.625x
Entry Fees: 38.75 Winnings: 79.28
Best Possible Lineup- - Using the free lineup rewind tool on fantasycruncher, I find the highest possible lineup that could have been played.
People throw a lot of hate my way. It’s easy when it’s just words on a screen. Sometimes we forget there are real people out there. I’m so beyond incredibly lucky to have found an incredible real person that I really love and that feels the same about me. We are even luckier to have created an amazing real little person that doctors said would never happen. I’m also incredibly lucky because my wife’s family is all good people. And I mean every single one of them. Not only them, but their spouses and kids. It’s truly incredible, and I am so beyond grateful for having them in my life.
The reason I want to bring this up is because, like real people, sometimes inexplicable and terrible things happen to the best of the people we know. One of those people is my sister-in-law. Smart, humble, kind: she is a great person in every sense of the world. Her and my brother-in-law settled into an idyllic life in NYC, both working jobs they loved. When she got pregnant with her first, my little nephew, they packed it all up and got a house in a beautiful suburb. She was able to work from home while raising her child. And, things, as they normally do, happened, and soon I welcomed another nephew to this world. Both are incredibly smart, funny, and kind little boys, both now past toddler age.
Around September of 2017, my sister-in-law had a really bad seizure out of nowhere. When they went to the doctor, he did the tests and found an aggressive brain tumor. The best we could hope for was to manage it, and prolong everything as long as we could, to give her as much time as she could have with those little boys. They said the median is about a year. As I sit here, tears streaming from typing this, I am trying to get over the fact that, several days ago she came down with pneumonia and her condition worsened dramatically and quickly, as cancer tends to. They tried to do everything they could, and she is still fighting. She was always a fighter, if nothing else. But the time is growing incredibly short. It’s unforgivable for something like this to happen, in every sense of the word, cosmic or not.
I don’t know any of you, really. I don’t know what you believe, or how you see things in the universe. But whatever way you have of sending out some positive thoughts for my sister-in-law, her husband, her mother and father and brother and sisters, and, especially, for her 2 little boys, who will spend most of their life only able to remember their amazing mother through the stories we have to tell them, please take the time to do that. Then find the people you are lucky to have in your life and tell them that. Cause things go wrong, quickly. And you really just never know.
At some point, I am going to have to disappear for a few days. It’s incredibly hard for me to travel, and I don’t own a laptop, so I will only be able to do what I can. Not that any of this really matters. But I wanted to let you know what was happening and, in the process, let you know about one of the best people I ever met, that will be taken from this world far, far too soon.
I built my lineup tonight around 3 people - Vuc, who was my pick of the day, Donovan, who I talked extensively about as well yesterday, and Lou Williams. But bathrobe, Lou Williams isn’t in your lineup! That’s right, attentive reader: Lou Williams was declared out at 945, like 45 minutes before their game locked. This left me scrambling at the last minute, but I will get to that later. With those 3 players locked in, I put together a lineup I really liked that got a piece of a lot of the games I wanted. I got Tyler Johnson who would get the start with Richardson out sick. I got Belinelli, who would be getting extra run with DeRozan on the sidelines (also late news. Thanks, Pop). I, like 60% of entries on the slate, also went with Zizic. No one is going to be happy playing a Center against the Jazz, but I figure 3700 was cheap enough, and he would be popular enough, it wouldn’t hurt me that much if he didn’t get the 20+ DKP I wanted. Plus, if this game blew out (as I expected) he should get some extra run against whoever backs up Gobert (even though I thought Donovan would have no choice but to get the minutes, blowout or not). With Lou Will in, this left me two slots that don’t matter now. After Lou Will was declared out, I had 3 slots now I had to fill and a decent amount of money to do it. I tried about 100 combinations, before deciding to punt down to Tyrone Wallace in order to fit in Durant and Harris. I would have preferred to keep it with LouWill and Gallo, but them’s the breaks. A lot of us got screwed tonight. Hopefully we made the right choices with what we could control.
Notes on the Early Slate:
As per usual, since there are only 2 games on the early slate, I will share my basic notes that I normally use to put together my analysis:
Pace Rankings (over their last 15 games): OKC 1st, PHI 5th, PHX 10th, CHA 22nd
Injury Notes: For Philly, Embiid is Questionable. If he is out, Simmons, Butler, Reddick, and Muscala would be fantastic plays. Especially on a 2 game slate. For Phoenix, Crawford is Questionable. That is almost meaningless. Nothing else is news
In terms of DvP/DKPPG/Defense: OKC is weakest against SG, they are also weaker than league average against SF. PG13 is the top DRPM SF though, so this tells me that Ferguson is weak and they will just move PG13 over to wherever he is needed, leaving a vacancy on the perimeter. This would give a nice advantage to Redick.
In terms of DvP/DKPPG/Defense: PHI is Above Average Against Everything.
In terms of DvP/DKPPG/Defense: PHX is weakest against PG. They are also weak against C. They are below league average, but not terrible, against SG. Phoenix has 3 players in the bottom 5 in DRPM- Booker, the 2nd worst SG, Warren, the 4th worst SF, and Ayton, the 3rd worst C.
In terms of DvP/DKPPG/Defense: CHA is weakest against PF and C. They are weaker than league average against PG/SG. No matter who they start without Zeller, they are putting up a league-bottom DRPM Center.
The following players are top 50 in usage on this slate: Russ (2nd), Booker (3rd), Embiid (5th), Kemba (8th), PG13 (20th), Schroder (42nd), Tony Parker (44th)
OKC/PHI has a line of 235 and a spread of PHI -2
PHX/CHA has a line of 222 and a spread of CHA -7.
The Main Slate:
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.
Ah, the first conditional MSC so far. With 2 pretty significant injuries happening midway through our games yesterday to 2 players on back-to-backs, I am unable to guess how exactly it is going to shake out. But, as you can see, MSC is partially based on teammate health. So this news is hugely relevant.
I will say, right now, if everyone that is Questionable turns out to play, the obvious choice for the day, as it always is, is James Harden (13400). The price keeps going up. It’s still not high enough. The Rockets are in a massive pace up spot against the Lakers and the spread is only HOU -7. The O/U of 225.5 is also second highest on this slate, even though there are so many other games. If the Rockets score 115 points against the Lakers, it’s safe to say that Harden will a hand in most of them. No matter what, Knight, CP3, and Capela will still be out, so even though Gordon will chuck up some shots, it really won’t matter. Additionally, if you go by DRPM, Austin Rivers is the 3rd worst starting PG and Eric Gordon is the WORST starting SG. Even if Harden goes nuts, the Lakers won’t face much resistance in running the game back. While I always make the point that no one can stop someone like Harden, it is worth noting that Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart, who should be spending most of their time on Harden, are both excellent defenders,which might lead Harden to try to pass more (ahahaha, i know it’s funny. But you never know).
However, we need to consider the injury news. I must preface this by saying that both of these plays would be excellent today on their own merits, but, given price considerations (in general, not specifically), I would play them over Harden if the situation presented itself. The first bit of injury news is that Andre Drummond got hit in the face and was bleeding and had to go back to the locker room. They spent over a half an hour on him before declaring that he wouldn’t come back into the game. It should be worth noting that, in case you don’t remember, Drummond had surgery on his nose a couple years ago so, if something got aggravated, they could play it safe and rest him on the 2nd night of a back-to-back. If he is out, Blake (9000) becomes my play of the day. Ellenson probably won’t play, neither will Leuer (or Ish Smith for that matter), and Zaza (3300) won’t be able to play the minutes Drummond plays. This means that Blake not only becomes the sole focal point of this offense, but he gets a bunch of minutes playing C against SAC. Ooooooh Hell Yes. He is in a massive pace up spot, on top of already being 15th in the NBA in Usage. Additionally, this game has the 2nd highest O/U at 221 with a razor thin spread of SAC -1. Like I said, I would still favor Harden over him if Drummond plays, but if Drummond is out, Blake will be my play of the day. I will advise one bit of caution though- they will randomly sit Blake in back-to-backs occasionally. With both games at home, and with Drummond potentially missing, I can’t imagine they let Blake rest for rest’s sake. But it is something to be aware of. We can luckily plan for it, since this is the first game that goes off.
The next situation we have to be aware of is that Aaron Gordon was also injured in yesterday’s game and was unable to return. This was a case of his back tightening up, which is something that could go away quickly, or could sideline him for a couple of days (depending on the severity, which we should know more about later on today). If Drummond is in, and Gordon is out, my MSC play would be Jonathan Isaac (3700), which would be my first punt-priced MSC play. I would love Vuc (8600) and Fournier (5400) in this spot as well, but, as of right now, the spread in this game is MIL -8. This was before the Gordon news broke, and, if Gordon is unable to play, I would expect this game to move into blow out territory. The one player who will be asked to both do more with Gordon off the court, and mop up if it blows out, is Jon Isaac. He will be locked into minutes in the mid-to-upper 30s tonight, playing the position against which MIL is weakest. Since it hasn’t been done before, it should be noted, I would put Isaac’s ceiling near 50. While I don’t expect him to get there, he would be the most likely player to get to that ceiling if Gordon were to miss today, regardless of the specific situation of the games.
Situations to take advantage of (in no particular order):
Fox - If Drummond is out, this will be how I run back Blake. If Drummond is in, I am playing Fox (7600) anyway. They have a pace down matchup on the road, sure, but it’s one of the highest O/Us on the slate, and you can’t get closer than a SAC -1 spread without going to a pick ‘em. Plus, Fox will be lined up against Reggie Jackson who is an awful defender. With his price falling back under 8k, in a great matchup, this is the time to strike. If Drummond is in, I will also have interest in WCS (6800). They don’t play WCS on the road as much, as it is. If Drummond is out and the Pistons play most of the game small, the Kings will be more than happy to play the same way and let WCS take a seat. If Drummond is in, they will need WCS’ height and he would be one of the best plays today.
Luka Fucking Doncic - So Doncic has been on fire lately, and his price just hasn’t been high enough. Four games ago, Doncic was 8200 and put up 49.75 DKP. Three games ago, his price went up to 8400 and he responded with 63 DKP. Two games ago, his price went up again to 8500, and he still put up a completely fine 43 DKP in only 32 minutes. Last game, his price fell 100 to 8400 and he still put up 49.5 DKP in 36 minutes against the Spurs, who have been playing the most efficient D over the last month plus. So someone needs to tell me why in the hell has Doncic (7900)seen his price fall 500? Sure he’s going against the Pacers, who are a good defensive team, but he just showed against the Spurs that even a good D can’t stop him when he’s handling the ball and taking 20+ shots a game. And Barea and DSJ will be out tonight, again, giving Doncic an incredible uptick in usage. I also want to point out that Doncic keeps getting 8 or so rebounds or assists, meaning that, for players like me that do DK, he is SO CLOSE every game to getting you even more points with the bonuses. All the totals are low, relative to how they have been the last week. Don’t let 214.5 scare you. And the spread of IND -6 is high, but not nearly high enough that we have to worry about getting Luka in there. If Wes Matthews is also out, Doncic would be one of the plays of the day today, so be prepared to get him in. We will know that before 7pm, as this is the first game to go off.
Bojan Bogdanovic (The One on the Pacers) - For anyone that has been paying attention, Oladipo looks BAD lately. Like, something is not right with him. His price keeps falling, and it is still far too high for the sub 30 DKP he keeps putting up. The main benefactor of that tonight should be Bojan (5600). He’s coming off a stone cold shooting day, going 3-11, including 1-7 from 3, on his way to only 11.75 DKP. This should lower ownership for anyone who had him/lives by game logs. However, there’s a difference between seeing the good perimeter D of Philly, and the horrific perimeter D of Dallas. If there is one way you need to attack the Mavs, it is with 3 shooters, and, tonight, that honor goes to Bojan. He is in a spot to produce like someone priced 1000 more than he is. I love the spot, and will give him serious consideration tonight.
Bulls - While Kris Dunn will have his hands full with Justise Winslow, LaVine (6500) will be in about as good a spot as you can be. Sure, this game has the lowest O/U on the slate, at 206.5, but it also has a close spread of MIA -2.5 meaning this game should stay close and everyone should be able to get normal minutes. LaVine is 13th in the NBA in usage and he still shoots the ball as if if was priced at 8000. If this stays close, LaVine will be able to get over 30 minutes, and take more than 20 shots. Like I often say with Kuzma and his ridiculous pricing, LaVine has the ability to get to 5x value just in raw points. I pointed out last game, we should see more from Markkanen (6400) as well with Carter out. He only got 25 minutes due to blow out, but still put up 44 DKP against the solid D of Millsap. Similarly, the injury to Carter has put both Portis (5700) and Parker (4500) in great spots. Both saw a significant price increase, but not enough to account for their new roles. Similarly, RoLo (3400) was forced into 19 minutes and scored 26 DKP.
Heat - I love Justise Winslow (7100) in this spot, though I really hate the price. If Richardson is out again, I may have to suck it up and pay for it. If Richardson is in, I won’t be able to get there. If Richardson is out, I will also have no problem going back to Tyler Johnson (3900) who had a great game and saw no price increase. Wade (4800) also steps up with Richardson out, and his price also didn’t come up even though he had a great game last night.
Kuzma/Ball - As I discussed earlier when discussing Harden/the Rockets, this game has the 2nd highest total on the slate, and a not-high-enough spread of HOU -7. The Rockets are really, really bad at D with all the injuries, and the 2 people in the best spots to take advantage of that are the perennially underpriced Kuzma (7500) and Ball (6900). If I decide to go the Harden route, I will run it back with Ball first. Ball will get extra defensive stats, as well as the potential triple-double bonus. Plus, he has been producing well recently, putting up 44, 42, and 40.75 DKP his last 3 games. As with LaVine earlier, Kuzma is priced low enough he can get you 5x value just in raw points. There is no reason he should be that low with Lebron out.
Situations to be careful of(in no particular order):
Grizzlies vs Raptors - Total of only 208? Check. Spread of TOR -12? Check. Two slower, defensive minded teams? Check. Not a whole lot to love, especially on a slate with so many better games. Even the low priced people aren’t as good as the punts we can find other places.
Cavs vs. Nuggets - The Cavs got curb stomped in Utah last night. Then they had to get on a plane and fly to Denver, get situated, try to sleep in an unfamiliar bed, and see, when they check their phones in a fit of tossing and turning, that they are 16 point underdogs tonight. This means, if I am going anywhere it is going to be cheap. Zizic (4600)has seen his price increase and he will be in a tough matchup against Jokic. Still, he will get blowout run and, if Tristan is out again, there are really no other decent options on this team. Clarkson (5200) will get run regardless of blowout, and will put up a buttload of shots, regardless. Blossomgame (3500) is also someone who seems to get the extra run if Tristan is out, and who also will close the game when Denver ends it early. On the Denver side, it’s the usual cheap suspects. I would take Beasley (4900) (although he is getting expensive for not being a starter), Monte Morris (3600) and Plumlee (4300).
Situations to monitor:
Aaron Gordon and the Bucks - I already dealt with how I will approach the Magic in the MSC section, but it will also change how I deal with the Bucks as well. As I mentioned, this game is already teetering on blow out territory. If Gordon is ruled out, I expect this game to do just that. So, if he is in, I will keep a far too cheap Giannis (10700) in my pool, cause there is a good chance this game stays close, and Giannis will be able to eat up a potentially hobbled Gordon. If Gordon is out, and I expect a blow out, I will be more interested in the Bucks that get the blow out run like Brogdon (5700) and Ilyasova (3300).
The Health of the Hawks - Much like other games, we will have to wait for some news before we can decide how to play this. As of right now Collins (7700) and Trae (6800) are questionable with, presumably, the same flu that’s been keeping people out of games all over the NBA. This game has the highest total on the slate at 226.5, but it also has a blow out concerning spread of -8.5. If Collins and/or Trae miss, this game is going to get out of hand quickly (it may anyway). If those guys are in, they are expensive enough they are tough to play in this slate (as much as I love Collins every time). If they are out, Lin (4400) and Len (5100)/Spellman (4100) become incredibly enticing medium/low-priced plays. Given the blow out risk in this game, they might be great plays regardless. Huerter (5300) would also be forced to pick up a great deal of usage. Dedmon (5200) who is probable would fall into some more rebounds as well as usage. On the other side Kyrie (9400) is already tough to play at that price, given the risk, but he will be unplayable to me if Collins and Trae miss. I don’t mind any of the mid-priced guys on the Celtics if those Hawks are in, but if they are out, I will shore up on the low priced guys, much like with ATL. This means Rozier (4600) would normally be a great play, except he is priced as if Kyrie is going to be out. Brown (4300) is one of the primary beneficiaries of blow outs, and he will be the first one I lock in tomorrow in that case.
Alright, that’s everything. I hope I can do an article tomorrow. I’m sorry if I wind up having to disappear, but I appreciate all the positive thoughts you will all be sending out for her and her family.