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) Kemba Walker, BOS ($8200, vs CHA)
You don’t trust the Illuminati, but you definitely trust the Kemba. Forget about the whole revenge narrative, as K-Walk has gone through this path already this season. Kemba was respectful back den and only dropped 14 pops on the Hornets, so with that out of the way it’s time to turn Cardiac. Cardiac Kemba, that is. And that’s precisely what Walker has been since the start of the season and even more the month. Just in December KW is performing as the 17th-best player in the L not counting Friday’s outlier of a dud. Before that crappy outing against Detroit (2-3-11 on the night), Kemba had scored 16-plus points in every Dec. game, reached 44 crickets against Indiana, and logged a dub-dub against the Knicks. The triples are coming in bags as Kewa is hitting 4.25 of them each game while dishing out 7 dimes and grabbing 3.1 boards in the month of giving. No way he has back-to-back duds, so you know what to do.
Love: (SG) Jaylen Brown, BOS ($7300, vs CHA)
Love: (SF) Jayson Tatum, BOS ($7400, vs CHA)
Jaylen and Jayson. Jayson and Jaylen. J&J. That makes it three-for-three Celtics here, folks. Not to pick on the Hornets too much, but it is what it is in such a small slate of games. I could write any of J-Len or J-Son’s lines on the season and interchange without you noticing: 21 and 19 ppg. 6.9 rpg both. 2.8 and 2.3 apg. 1.4 and 1.2 spg. 0.7 and 0.4 bpg. Crazy close at around 20-7-2-1-1 rounding here and there. The only difference comes in the shooting department. Tatum is hitting fewer shots from the floor (41.4 fg% to Brown’s 50.4%) while attempting more (18.3 fga to Brown’s 14.7), though the volume paired with the percentages compensates and the three-pointers and free-throw numbers are also close enough. Tatum has been a top-23 performer in December. Brown a top-28. Anyways, either one or the other or most probably the two will give you some very delicious 40 DKFP every night. What’s not to like?
Love: (PF) Montrezl Harrell, LAC ($6600, at OKC)
The rumors are starting to fill the air and I don’t know when but whenever Trez moves—and even if he re-signs—he’s going to get his bag full of Gs. Monty has started exactly zero games, is playing 29 mpg, and in those runs off the pine he’s putting up a gaudy 19 points, 7.5 boards, and 2 dimes to go with 2 stocks. Trez’s shooting is sublime at 57.7% from the floor and when he’s out there he finishes up to 23.8% of the Clips plays. Nobody is averaging a 19-7-2 line on the year in fewer than 30 minutes, and those doing it are all locked-in starters shooting many more shots per game and playing along with first-unit teammates. Harrell is thriving in his current environment and I don’t really know if any other team would boost his production, but if that is indeed correct and his numbers improve in a leading role then I don’t know where this monster’s ceiling is at.
Love: (C) Myles Turner, IND ($5100, at MIL)
Cheapest of plays of the day, taking advantage of Sabonis probable absence from the game. To end writing Turner’s name here I’ve had to walk a shit ton of Myles, believe me. It’s been a low-low for the Samurai with Domas around. He’s playing 30 minutes but the usage is ridiculously low at 17.7% and the numbers make you cry. Just 11.6 points, 5.7 boards, and 1.2 assists. Thank God the blocks (2.3 per) are saving his season and he’s not shooting that bad hitting field goals at a 43.6% clip, though compared to other bigs that’s ridiculously low... He can hit the random three, but it’s not that he’s going to win you the day with those long shots as he ain’t dropping more than a couple per game at the most optimistic of outcomes. At least it looks like he’s found his groove lately with a three-game streak in the 30-to-41 DKFP range. That and the whole interior being open for him should help Turner produce at least something digestible.
If you have any comment or question about the daily column, tonight’s games, players involved in them, or even season-long fantasy NBA topics, just drop it below or reach out to me on Twitter at @chapulana and I’ll get back to you as soon as I grab a keyboard!