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’m not saying you’re undervaluing Miami, but I’m also not not saying that you’re undervaluing Miami. The Heat, once more, won a basketball game and are already 2-0 up against Boston in the ECF. Not that these Celtics can’t come back, but knowing what the Heat have done during these playoffs things are starting to look not so good for Boston.
- As if the loss wasn’t enough, there were reports talking about a Celtic’s locker room blowup after the game, with Smart screaming the hell out of his body. Items were thrown around and things don’t look too good around Boston’s squad members.
- Speaking of returning players: Denver keeps monitoring Will Barton’s status in case he can come back from injury and join the team for its bubble stretch run. It is a long shot, but there are chances if the Nuggets stay alive for a full series against the Lakers or reach the Finals.
- Gordon Hayward wasn’t active yesterday, but he should be back for Game 3, which will take place tomorrow with the Celtics’ back half against the wall.
- Coach Frank Vogel said that the Lakers will get back to using biggies against Denver. It worked during the regular season, so it’s reasonable. Welcome back Dwight and JaVale!
- The Raptors have made all of FVV, Marc, and Ibaka a priority this upcoming free agency. VanVleet should command big bucks but they might be able to retain Gasol and Serge for cheap or a little more money but shorter deals.
- Coming out of left field: Buddy Hield might be considering requesting a trade out of Sacramento—after signing a four-year extension just months ago but also after being demoted to a second-unit role. Uh, oh.
- Tom Haberstroh of NBC said yesterday (not from sources, just his thoughts) that Houston is probably going to look quite different next season. Not calling a Harden trade, but chances are there with Daryl Morey being as trade-prone as anyone in this league.
Duds and Studs: Yesterday’s Slate Recap
- Bam Bam! Adebayo led the Heat to their second win against Boston in what is starting to look like a very sweet series for Miami. Bam had the lone dub-dub of the night with a 21-10 performance to which he added 4 dimes, 2 steals, and a block. He shot a monster 62.5% from the field and limited his turnovers to just a couple. Incredible game for a not-so-incredible 46 slate-leading DKFP.
- Only Kemba Walker reached 40+ fantasy points apart from Bam. He did so with a 23-7-3 line, two steals, and a block. Not enough for him or Boston to score them a W.
- The Heat are 2-0 and starting to be this close to making an unexpected Finals run, with the ROI King award from yesterday going to... Duncan Robinson! What were the odds, man? D-Rob came from nowhere and he’s turned into Klay 2.0. Robinson dropped 18 points on the Celtics... all from long-range! He added 2 rebounds and 4 assists to round up his game and become the best value of the slate. No one was even remotely close to his ROI.
- And the DOTS (Dud of the Slate) Award went to... Jayson Tatum! Not a terrible play, don’t get me wrong, but Tatum played a massive 42 minutes in which he could only score 21 points, grab 5 boards, and dish out 4 dimes... while carrying the highest price of the slate. Not something you really like to pay for to have in your lineup, indeed.
- One dub-dubs via points and rebounds (Bam’s 21-10) and none between points and assists.
- A night for thefts, as Jimmy Butler stole 4 rocks and Jae Crowder snatched 3 possessions.
Gotta Win The Day: Best/Worst DraftKings plays for today’s slate
- Love: (PG) Jamal Murray, DEN (at LAL): Murray was sublime against the Jazz but had a tough time facing the Clips and Kawhi/PG13. This series should be better for the guard, as the Lakers top-dogs are probably going to defend bigger bodies and that will leave Murray more open and hand him some more chances to use his talents to greater extents. The drop-down in price from LBJ-AD-Jokic to Jamal is quite big so it makes sense to take advantage of the discount while it lasts. Even not having the best game of his life, Murray should still reach the 40-DKFP mark easily because he’s a virtual lock for his average 20-5-5 line at the very least.
- Hate: (C) Nikola Jokic, DEN (at LAL): On the other hand, Jokic doesn’t look too good here and I’d like to let him marinate for a game to see how things go and how both teams’ systems work against each other before paying top-dollar for The Joker. Obviously, Niko will still probably drop 15+ points and reach near 10 boards with gusto, but that’s far from what you’d expect from a $10.5K+ player in any fantasy slate. The Lakers limited Jokic quite a lot in prior meetings, and they will deploy all of AD, Dwight, and JaVale on him on defense, so it’s going to be a fresh rotation of big men going against Jokic all night long. Not liking him that much at least to get the series started.
- Love: (PG/SF) LeBron James, LAL (vs DEN): Of the three most-expensive players tonight, I’d bet on LBJ returning the highest value. AD will cook too, but LeBron looks like the best bet to me. Check the data: LA and Denver have played four games this season against each other, and James finished as the best fantasy player in the three of them he took part in (he missed the Dec. 22nd affair). He has averaged 56+ DKFP in those games and he even reached 71 (!) back in February when he put up a monster 32-12-14 line. The most probable outcome? A 25-7-7 baseline with upside to getting into triple-double digits if all goes right for the Lake Show.
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!