Welcome to your daily NBA DFS digest at FakeTeams, gents. Every day I’m here with a handful of pro-tips to roster a winning team just a few hours from now.
You might be new to fantasy hoops, so let me tell you this: the world doesn’t end in LeBron James. Each night gives us a pretty good batch of surprising performances and leaves us in the dust with more than a few upsetting outings by those we played. First world problems, carry on. That’s the beauty of this game. There are so many matches going on every single day and such a big roster available that you can’t fixate yourself in the very same player on and on but instead you need to keep things fluid.
So read on, take note, play cool, and win the day. (Player salaries pulled from DraftKings.)
Love: (PG) Ricky Rubio, PHO ($6200, at GS)
Finally, after years of waiting, Rubio looks like the very real deal he promised to be back when he was 12 years old or something. Rubio has started the season in fury-mode and although he missed the game against the Clipper last Saturday he’s played any other match logging 30, 36 and 28 minutes and averaging a staggering 10/8/9.3 hot line to go with a sweet 2.3 steals per game. Yes, his 3.7 turnovers aren’t beautiful, but his 1.20 DKFP per minute on the court are the cheapest on the slate other than Derrick Rose’s ($5800) on a much easier matchup (Golden State stinks, giving up the second-most fantasy points per game through Tuesday’s games).
Hate: (PG) Mike Conley, UTA ($6200, vs LAC)
It’s been a tough one for Conley so far in his new surroundings. The veteran is playing quite a lot (25.6 minutes per in four games), but his averages are horrid up to now. He’s at a paltry 7.8 points, 2.3 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 0.6 stocks while turning the ball over 2.8 times per game. His shooting averages? Ridiculously low 20% from the field, 15% from three and 83.3% from the FT line but on only three attempts per game. In front of him? No less than Pat Bev. Yes, I guess I’m passing on Mike.
Love: (SG) Devin Booker, PHO ($7900, at GS)
Give me all of the Sunny stacks you have. We all know Golden State’s stinky defense, and we all know what a type of player Booker is. Little Devin is already playing 35.3 minutes with a massive 27.7% usage percentage. And yes, you guessed it right, the kid is hanging buckets in bunches on opponents’ heads. His 22.8 points per game trail only CJ McCollum’s 23.3 in the slate’s SG group, but Booker is adding four boards per contest and 6.3 dimes—those last ones also second-best only behind Bradley Beal’s 7.7.
Hate: (SG) Buddy Hield, SAC ($6200, vs CHA)
Hield turned himself into a superhero last year, put on the cap, and got himself a sweet extension and recognition among league pals. This season, though, he better improve his performance or he’d come back to the second-tier sooner than you realize. Hield is playing 29 minutes per night yet he’s only scoring 14.3 points on horrid 35.1 FG% and 37.5 3P% numbers. He’s also giving the ball away at 3.5 turnovers per game and for someone as trusted as he is in Sacto (25.2% usage) his DKFP average of 23.13 is rather low.
Love: (SF) Jayson Tatum, BOS ($6800, vs MIL)
Tatum is smashing playing time numbers by averaging 35.3 minutes so far. Oh, hey, and he’s making the most of them for sure. The kid has lit up nets all around so far, scoring 20.3 points per game while snatching 9.3 boards and dishing out two assists per contest. Not only that, but he’s also been able to average 3.4 stocks to a great average of 42.83 DKFP and 1.21 DKFP per minute played. He’s also making it work from three, shooting 7.3 shots from beyond the arc and netting them on 45.5 percent of his attempts.
Hate: (SF) Kelly Oubre Jr., PHO ($6200, at GS)
How sustainable is Oubre’s game and for how long will he keep it up? Call me crazy—and I love Oubre, don’t get me wrong—but I’m not trusting him playing to this level for much longer. Oubre has scored 18-plus points in his four games this season while he had done so only 38 more times during his career (that is, since 2015). So far, so good for this guy, that can’t be argued though. But his surely to drop averages and his bad 33.3% shooting from three on 5.3 attempts don’t convince me.
Love: (PF) Serge Ibaka, TOR ($5600, vs DET)
While Ibaka is not playing as many minutes as others at the position, he’s still averaging numbers to the level of the time-eaters. In just 23.2 minutes per game, he’s scoring 13.3 points and rebounding 7.5 rocks. With Blake Griffin still out and facing Markieff Morris, Ibaka might smash tonight even in a timeshare with Pascal Siakam and Marc Gasol. The most encouraging thing with Serge is that if he sees the slightest of bumps in minutes he could turn into a winner, given he is averaging 1.10 DKFP per minute played.
Hate: (PF) Aaron Gordon, ORL ($6100, vs NYY)
Talk about a disappointing start to the season, man. Gordon is always so close, yet so far away from... something? In his three contests so far he’s virtually logging 30 minutes per game but his production has been mediocre at best: 7.0 points, 4.7 boards, and 3.7 assists. At least he’s getting 1.3 steals and a block per contest, but that doesn’t make up for his overall outcome. He’s one of the worst plays of the slate at a measly 0.75 DKFP per minute played (fifth-worst mark among those averaging 20-plus minutes per game) and he’s been run over by teammate Jonathan Isaac (1.07 DKFP per minute).
Love: (C) Myles Turner, IND ($7000 at BKN)
This kid is mad. You won’t pick him off the list of available centers tonight just based on his simple classic averages: 17.3 points and 8.3 rebounds per game, those are. But look further and play Turner’s song. Myles is adding 1.7 blocks to his line nightly, he’s attempting almost 12 field goals and five three-pointers per game, and he’s hitting them at 54.3% and 50% respectively—he’s the only center other than Karl-Anthony Towns averaging as many threes with a 50%-plus conversion rate. Oh, and these Nets have kind of suffered so far allowing the fourth-most DKFP per game to the opposition.
Hate: (C) Joel Embiid, PHI ($10000, vs MIN)
If Halloween was a player you had to face in a basketball court I’m pretty confident believing it could be Joel Embiid. So yeah, hating on him is a pretty tall statement. But hear me out. Embiid is going against a stud in Anthony-Towns that couldn’t have started the season better. He’s doing it all from scoring (9.7 three-point attempts per game, so picture Embiid covering more floor than ever and gassing out a bit), to rebounding, to blocking and stealing fools around. Embiid himself has started nicely but has already missed time and I’d better stay off this war tonight.