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NBA DFS: Pascal Siakam and best/worst DraftKings daily fantasy basketball plays for Sunday, Aug. 23rd

Duds and studs. Good and bad plays. We take a look at the past and upcoming NBA games to let you know what’s going on and how to tackle your DraftKings plays.

Toronto Raptors v Brooklyn Nets - Game Three Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images

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. On top of that, I’ll bring you some news, statistical trends from the past few days, some studs/duds from the last slate of games, and much more!

Hoop Land Times: News and notes from around the Association

  • Bad news for the Blazers: LeBron is back to being LeBron. Remember all the way back in 2007 when he carried the Cavs to the Finals? That is LeBron again. At age 35. Ridiculous, but I guess kinda expected? Also, the Lake Show is now up 2-1.
  • Luka sprained his left ankle a couple of days ago. Looks like the MRI came back negative, and there is not much to worry about with Doncic most probably playing today.
  • Russ missed his third game in a row and Mike D’Antoni keeps saying there is no timetable for his return. The Rockets dropped their Saturday game, and while I think they’ll end ousting OKC, they better get Russy back soon.
  • Domas Sabonis is returning to the bubble... only a little too late. These Pacers are cooked cooked. See you next year.
  • Toronto Raptors head coach Nick Nurse has been named the 2019-20 NBA Coach of the Year, the NBA announced yesterday. Keep sleeping on the Raps.

Duds and Studs: Yesterday’s Slate Recap

  • I’m sorry about LBJ because he didn’t lead the slate by all of 0.25 DKFP. LOL. Shout-out to Malcolm Brogdon for being the star of the night yesterday, even with Indiana dropping the game and falling 0-3 down to Miami. Brogdon completed a masterful 34-7-14 performance in 43 minutes hitting 4 triples for 68.75 DKFP.
  • Truth be told, things were pretty tight yesterday with three more players getting 65+ DKFP and Harden reaching 61.75 himself. Those three, in order, were Bron (38-12-8 near-trip-dub), Giannis (35-11-7-2-1 shooting 85.7%), AD (29-11-8 with 2 steals and 3 blocks).
  • Three guys hit 51 DKFP in Shai, Dame (slate-leading 5 triples), and C.J. A bunch of others (up to 8 guys) finished in the 40-to-50 DKFP clip including Butler, Schroder, CP3, Warren, Bam, Jeff Green, Dragic, and Melo.
  • Relatively unexpected ROI King yesterday in... Malcolm Brogdon! It is not that he came as a super cheap play ($6.9K) but he put on a monster game by dropping 34 pops and dishing out all of 14 (!) dimes to his teammates. All of that to reach 68.75 DKFP while committing 5 turnovers and dealing with 5 personal fouls. Jeff Green was another valuable play, followed by Dennis Schroder.
  • And the DOTS (Dud of the Slate) Award goes to... Jusuf Nurkic! With Zach Collins out for the rest of the year the Blazers had to run the Nurk-Hassan big men pair and both of them were atrocious yesterday. The problem with Nurk: he came at a ridiculously high $8.9K while Hassan was a cheap-ass $4.6K. Neither of them topped 22 DKFP. Ugh. Other horrid plays were Robert Covington and Kyle Kuzma.
  • Another tamed night when it came to double-doubles with just six on points and rebounds (LBJ, Myles Turner, Giannis, AD, Bam, Danuel House) and one between points and assists (Brogdon’s 34-14).
  • Things got spicy on the stealing leaderboard with T.J. Warren’s 5 thefts and Shai/Melo stealing 4 balls each. Four fools went bonkers and blocked all of 4 shots (AD, Eric Gordon, Myles Turner... and Lu Dort!)

Gotta Win The Day: Best/Worst DraftKings plays for today’s slate

  • Love: (PF) Pascal Siakam, TOR ($7900, at BKN): Toronto is 3-0 and has Boston looming in the horizon as their second-round opponent. That’s a tough one and I bet the Raps would love to put Brooklyn away as soon as possible to get some rest while they can. Enter Pascal to accomplish that feat asap. The algorithm is starting to catch up with Siakam’s exploits, but he’s still under $8K while averaging 36 DKFP in his last six games for an average of 1.13 DKFP per minute out there. That’s nice, because Siakam has been playing more than 31 minutes against BKN and it is probable that he gets another extended run today to put the Nets to sleep. 20+ scorer with upside to entering the 10-board realm and pad his tally with some dimes, steals, and a block to spare. The usage in the last game was mental (35% of possessions) and he finished with his best bubble-score at 45.5 DKFP. Bet on a repeat.
  • Hate: (SF/PF) Tobias Harris, PHI ($7500, vs BOS): With Philadelphia on the verge of elimination you can bet Embiid will probably go off today and get like a 60% usage rate or something. He will eat possessions and leave the crumbles to the rest, including Tobi. Oh, and Tobi is already a borderline valuable player on the season (1.05 DKFP per minute on the court) so if he sees his usage cut in half... you have a serious dud in your hands. He’s seemed to get things a little bit right lately, mostly with back-to-back 11+ rebounds in the last two games, but I’m not betting on that as it is something he’s not done all year long (he actually averaged 6.7 rebounds prior to the restart...). The points will be around 15, but if he misses on the rebounds his fantasy upside falls all the way down to 30-35 DKFP tops.
  • Love: (PG) Jamal Murray, DEN ($6800, at UTA): Okay. Something is very clear here: Denver better get its shit together before it’s too late. Another thing is very clear too: Murray is not the face of the NBA, but he is not a player that should have this super cheap price tag attached to him either. This is a bargain, seriously. Murray has been banged up for most of the bubble run but he showed what he’s capable of in Game 1 when he played 40 minutes for a massive 59 DKFP. That’s Jam. He’s only played 30 and 26 minutes in the lass two games because Utah basically ran Denver off the court super early dominating those matches. Assuming Denver gets back on track and everybody gives an F about this postseason, Murray should get a nice performance good for 40 DKFP.
  • Hate: (SF) Paul George, LAC ($8000, at DAL): Betting against a super-duper star is always a risk, but here we are. PG has been plain and simply bad in the postseason. Playoff P is more Putrid P these days. Game 1 might get a pass (38.5 DKFP) but George has shot 23.5% and 18.8% from the floor in the last two attempting 17 and 16 shots which is bad. He’s finished both games under 15 points and thank god he at least grabbed 10 boards in Game 2 to bulk up his stupid 33 DKFP tally a bit. George is a 35 DKFP player these days with upside to maybe reaching 40 in the best of nights, which at $8K I’m sorry but I’m passing on.

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!