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NBA DFS: Nikola Vucevic and best/worst DraftKings daily fantasy basketball plays for Sunday, Aug. 9th

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.

Orlando Magic v Brooklyn Nets Photo by Ashley Landis - Pool/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

  • Not since 2014 had your truly legendary Phoenix Suns won five games in a row. Well, this is the year 2020 of our Lord, so you know it had to happen... and inside a freaking basketball bubble on top of all. Shouts to the Suns for pulling the 5-0 restart off and becoming the only undefeated team left in Disney.
  • The beef between Dame and Paul George kept growing yesterday after Lillard missed a couple of freebies to put Portland ahead and George waved him goodbye on the court and off (IG) of it. Bring it on!
  • As incredible as it sounds, Jamal Murray made his debut with Denver yesterday... and went on to play 39+ minutes including two overtimes. LOL
  • Ben Simmons left the bubble to undergo surgery on his knee. Woj tweeted about he recovery process putting him on track—in the best of cases—to make a comeback deep into the postseason if at all. Sorry, Sixers, but you’re cooked cooked.
  • Speaking of Benny the Sim, the Cavs might make a push toward acquiring Simmons via trade with Philly. They’d need a godfather offer to land him, but they say they like their chances. Yeah, sure.
  • I’m not entirely convinced the Pelicans should kick Alvin Gentry out of the building yet because he hasn’t had the chance to fully play a healthy roster yet, but if that happens and he’s ousted it looks like Tyronn Lue and Jason Kidd would be the front runners for the head coach position over NOLA.
  • For all you sneakerheads out there: Steph Curry is following the steps of the very own Michael Jordan and will have his own brand under the Under Armor banner. Not bad.

Duds and Studs: Last night slate roundup

  • As if we didn’t know already, Luka proved once more that he’s impossible. Why? Well, Doncic put up a historical line never reached in the history of NBA hoops: 36 points, 14 boards, and 19 dimes. Those totals, again, had never ever been posted by anyone in the league. Crazy. It translated to a monster 89 DKFP in his 41 minutes on the court while defeating the mighty Bucks. This Giannis vs. Luka rivalry can heat up soon enough.
  • Only two more fools broke the 60-DKFP barrier: Giannis (who would have thought... with a 34-13 and 5! blocks) and Jokic (sweet 30-11-7-3 line shooting 52.4% and hitting all six freebies).
  • Five ballers in the 50-to-60 DKFP-clip yesterday: Donovan Mitchell, Dorian Finney-Smith (!), LeBron, Jamal Murray, and Tyler Herro (!).
  • Clear winner of the ROI King Award last night in Dorian Finney-Smith. While Tyler Herro finished close (51 DKFP at just $5.1K) to Finney, what DFS did (54.75 at $4.8K) absolutely came from left field and without anyone expecting it, even less against the Bucks. I mean, it’s in this guy’s name, after all: DFS. D.F.S. Clearer than water. Dorian dropped a nice 27-11-5 line with a block to spare and hit 6 treys in his 43 (!) minutes of playing time.
  • And the DOTS (Dud of the Slate) Award goes to... Anthony Davis! Between the rest and the lack of effort, it makes sense to find super superstars laying eggs these days and for the remainder of the reseeding part of the regular season. AD did play a bulky 35 minutes but he finished with a stupid 8-8-4-2-2 complete-yet-meh line for 30 DKFP while tagged at $10.3K. Pretty good dud from Dame too after finishing with just 34.75 DKFP while carrying the fifth-highest price of the slate ($10K).
  • Torrid night on the dub-dub front with 10 coming via points and rebounds (Giannis, Nurkic, Gobert, Ayton, JaMurray, Dwight, Jokic, Kristaps, Porter Jr., Finney-Smith), and three on pops and dimes (Joe Ingles, Khris Middleton, Tyler Herro).
  • Massive kudos go to Luka for his unheard-of trip-dub: 36-14-19 shooting 50% on 24 fga and 90% from the free-throw line on 10 fta.
  • Indiana’s T.J. McConnell led the slate with 4 steals while Giannis (5) and Bam (3) were the only two guys to block more a couple rocks.

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

  • Love: (C) Nikola Vucevic, ORL ($8200, at BOS): If there is something missing in Boston that’s the presence of big bodies. Sure, Theis is there and the relatively-small ball the Celts play can’t be deemed lacking quality and results, but someone like Vuc should eat big time against a squad like Boston’s. The couple of times he faced them back in January and February he dropped a couple of dub-dubs and Orlando as a team seems to be playing better these days. Vucevic himself has been great in the bubble with a virtual line of 20-10 per game while adding 3 dimes and a steal per contest and keeping up good shooting percentages. Gimme that double-double and the bonus fantasy points it’d bring all day.
  • Hate: (PG) Jrue Holiday, NO ($9100, vs SA): The only reason I can find to justify Jrue’s stupid price today is the return of Resting Zion and the upside he brings in terms of finishing plays off assists. Other than that, you tell me how the hell Holiday carries the fifth-highest price of the slate. Jrue has been mediocre in Disney, that’s the truth. For someone priced at $8.7K on average since the restart, his 31.8 DKFP per game just don’t cut it—not even remotely. Jrue is averaging a 17-4-4 line, which is not bad, but among all 26 players doing that in Disney he’s the one with the lowest ROI by a mile. Only Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging fewer DKFP (31.4) than Jrue from those in that group, but he’s $2.2K cheaper on average. It makes no sense to pay so much for someone with pretty middling performance levels. Absolute and outright fade this one.
  • Love: (SF/PF) DeMar DeRozan, SAS ($8000, at NO): DeDe, on the other hand... The stuff of our dreams today. The Spurs and Pelicans are entangled in a battle to see if they can still snatch a place in the mini play-in tourney. It is going to be hard, but both of them need to win as hell to keep the race hot and the chances up. Even with all DeRozan has done in his five bubble-games his price has still to fully catch up with his exploits. In just 32.2 mpg DD is dropping 20 pops, grabbing 4 boards, and dishing out 6 dimes per game while contributing 1-1 on steals and blocks steadily. Three players have been able to do that in Disney so far: DeDe, Harden, and Russ, and the latter two have one and two fewer games played respectively and both are averaging more than 4 mpg over DeRozan’s average. Insane value poised to have a booming performance today to keep San Antonio in the postseason talk.
  • Hate: (PG) Ja Morant, MEM ($8600, at TOR): You gotta love Ja because of his 41 DKFP per game alone, sure, but the price is getting a little too high and I don’t like this matchup just one bit. Toronto had a rest-game in its last outing with multiple starters (all but FVV, who logged 31) dropping below the 30-minute mark in playing time. That’s just not how these Raps operate, and I’m betting of everybody going for a long run today. That means both FVV and Lowry will put their clamps on Ja, even with the Raps already locked into the East no. 2 spot. Also, and although in defeat, Morant came back hot but has dropped his levels of performance a little bit as of late, with two games at-or-under 36 DKFP among his last three, in which he failed to score 20 points and didn’t reach 10 assists either. The price kept rising, though, which is hard to justify, even less against a team like Toronto today.

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!