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
- I hate to open with this headline, but it is as sad as it is true: Jonathan Isaac re-injured his left knee after suffering a torn ACL yesterday. It is probable that, after missing much of this year, he’ll go on to miss most of the 2020-21 season too. It makes sense, though, as we have just seen how rushing this type of comeback can turn into a nightmare. Absolute bummer.
- The Dallas Mavericks beat the game of basketball after clinching the no. 7 seed even after losing their game yesterday. LOL. The Mavs keep sucking in clutch moments and close games, which will be kinda worrying entering the postseason.
- The San Antonio Spurs are two games behind Memphis and the 22-season playoffs streak is still alive and hanging in there. I can’t believe this team. Seriously. Will they ever go away?
- On news related to the Indiana Pacers: Domantas Sabonis will be out for a while (most probably not playing again this season) and Victor Oladipo will not play in back to backs. Not looking very good for the Pacers these days.
- Denver Nuggets’ point Jamal Murray said himself that his hamstring is still bothering him, making him a potential scratch for the second time in a row (against OKC today) since the seeding games started. Barton and Harris remain out too. The Nuggets are in the postseason already, but if this doesn’t change early they might get kicked out earlier than expected.
- Kelly Oubre Jr. said yesterday that he is “in the bubble to play basketball”. That’s cool and all, but either the Suns pull off the miracle and get into the postseason or it’s going to be hard for KOJr. to make it to the court before Phoenix packs its bags.
- Told you about Chicago not being convinced about moving on from Zach LaVine in a potential trade. Well, maybe they should start to look into Wendell Carter’s and Lauri Markkanen’s direction, as those two seem to be gathering interest around the league.
Duds and Studs: Last night slate roundup
- Giannis had to watch Embiid surpass him on the fantasy leaderboard a couple of days ago with a monster performance, but that didn’t happen yesterday. Giannis led the slate with 73.5 DKFP contributing 36 pops, 18 boards (!), 8 dimes, and a block while shooting 56% in a loss to Houston. The usage rate was insane at 37.6% and he did it all in just 32 minutes of playing time. This kid is truly unique.
- Two pretty known players crossed the 60-DKFP line: Luka (65) dropped a near-trip-dub against Phoenix with a 40-8-11 line while Dame (60) finished with an impressive 30-2-16, signing just the 10th 16+ assists game of the season.
- A lot of folks finished with 50+ DKFP, most interestingly Thomas Bryant (59.75) from the horrid Wizards. The other ones: Tatum, Harden, Nurkic, Porzingis, Russ, Middleton... and Troy Brown Jr.!
- It was a battle of Wizards for the ROI King award yesterday, although the aforementioned Thomas Bryant was the one snatching it. Bryant was a menace for Brooklyn all game long, played 36+ minutes, almost reached 60 DKFP, and he did it at just $4.8K! The line was reading 30-13-3-1-2 by the time the game was over and he even hit 4 treys, quite a performance for the young big man. The other Wizard with a massive ROI yesterday: Troy Brown Jr. (50.5 DKFP at just $4.5; 22-10-8-1).
- And the DOTS (Dud of the Slate) Award goes to... Deandre Ayton! Big-time stinker by the Phoenix biggie who only played 21 minutes and finished with a paltry 7-8 line (17 DKFP) in a night to forget after the algorithm priced him at $8.5K.
- Other pretty solid duds: De’Aaron Fox (20 DKFP at $7.9K), Rui Hachimura (23, $7.4K), and Kemba Walker (20.25, $6.9K).
- Double-digit dub-dubs via points and rebounds (Giannis, Jarrett Allen, Thomas Bryant, Middleton, Brook, Cam Johnson, Vucevic, Valanciunas, Dejounte, Troy Brown Jr.) but only two on points and dimes (Dame and Luka)
- No triple-doubles yesterday, but James Harden went nuts with his stealing tendencies committing 6 thefts against Milwaukee. It’s the first (at least) 20-6-6-6 game of the season. Another madman, Kristaps blocked 4 shots leading the slate in that regard.
Gotta Win The Day: Best/Worst DraftKings plays for tonight’s slate
- Love: (PG) Ja Morant, MEM ($7300, at NO): I get that Memphis has yet to get a W inside the bubble, but that is no reason enough for the algorithm to keep Ja’s price so low. Can’t hate on it though, and you better take advantage of the situation! The numbers don’t like, folks: Ja has finished with 47 and 48 DKFP in his two games in Orlando, has a dub-dub (22-11) and a near-trip-dub (25-9-9), he’s played 40+ and 36+ minutes, the usage is at 28% which is a season-high and the Grizzlies need to win ASAP if they don’t want to enter true panic-mode. With the absolutely derailed Pelicans at the other side of the court tonight, man we’re in for some fireworks. Zion is limited, Zo has sucked so far, and Ja will once more try to carry Memphis to its first W while proving he’s the ROY and above Williamson at least for now. No sense in tagging Morant with such a ridiculously low price. Go snatch him while his salary is so low and build around Ja!
- Hate: (C) Rudy Gobert, UTA ($7100, vs LAL): If you know me you know I hate betting against big men. It is just not a very sound strategy, because more often than not they end with a dub-dub, and even if they don’t excel they always find a way to get themselves into some good fantasy point marks. Not the case for Le Croissant inside the bubble, though. In two games he hasn’t topped 35 DKFP even playing 33 and 28 minutes. Sure, he had a dub-dub (14-12) in his debut against New Orleans (...) but then he could only log a 10-7 line versus OKC and he finished just 10.2% of Utah’s possessions. That usage just doesn’t cut it. Gobert has shot 9 and 6 field goals in those two, so the upside is super low and it all comes down to his rebounding and shot-blocking. Do you trust him tonight going against a Lakers team that is looking to seal the no. 1 seed while featuring Anthony Davis inside? Don’t count me in for it.
- Love: (C) Myles Turner, IND ($6100, at WAS): We know that Indiana will be missing both Sabonis and Oladipo against Washington as the Pacers won’t be deploying the latter in back-to-back games and the former is (most probably) done for the season due to injury. Brogdon is questionable, and I mean, someone has to score, right? Washington has suffered against biggies inside the bubble allowing 49.5 DKFP to Ayton in their first game and 48.75 to Jarrett Allen yesterday in their second. Myles will be the go-to big for Indiana, and I have no doubts he will see a serious boost in usage with some players out of the rotation. I know, he didn’t put on a show in the debut but he only played 20 minutes and got into foul trouble, and that looked more like a fluke of a game than anything else. Myles comes super cheap today and Washington just doesn’t look very capable of stopping him. Steal of the slate.
- Hate: (PG) Lonzo Ball, NO ($8000, vs MEM): As I already mentioned on Ja’s blurb above: Zo has sucked inside the bubble. Can’t blame him too much, as it’s more about the Pels stinking as a whole, but still. I had high hopes on Zo going into the restart, but so far not so good. I mean, Ball put on a pretty bad game to tip things off last Thursday (24.5 DKFP) and had another horrific performance on Saturday (18.5), but somehow his price hasn’t stopped raising from $7.4K to $7.7K to $8K now! The algorithm is working in reverse-mode or something, I can’t understand it. Ball doesn’t have his prime target in Zion playing many minutes, and Zo himself has logged just 27 and 23 rounds of the clock so he’s not having ample runs to bulk his numbers up. I mean, he’s dropped 4-6-7 and 7-6-3 lines shooting 15.4% and 33.3% in his couple of games, which... Ugh.
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!