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
- Things aren’t getting better between the NBA and COVID protocols these days. More games got postponed, including those affecting Boston, Miami, Chicago Dallas, and New Orleans. And it looks like this is just the start... Adam Silver keeps saying once we’re past January we’ll be good, but I will have to see it to believe it.
- Kyrie is still out due to personal reasons—though a video of him in a party leaked yesterday...—and Russ will miss at least another week with an injury.
- Bog Bog could be out for a month, at least. The Hawks have not put out any official timetable, but that’s what some voices in the known are saying.
- Between Jonathan Isaac’s and Markelle Fultz's injuries, the Magic have applied for two disabled payer exceptions and they will have almost $10 million of extra cap room to add free agents in order to bulk their roster. The Wiz will do the same in relation to Thomas Bryant’s season-ending injury, and they’ll net themselves $4+ extra million.
- Bradley Beal can’t do more to showcase his true talents to potential suitors in a trade before the deadline—and the Wiz better free Beal—while Harden might be comfy with the idea of staying in Houston at least until next summer’s offseason.
- Speaking of the Wiz, everything points to Scott Brooks getting axed before the season is over. The seat is hotter than hot for Brooks in this the last year of his contract, which he most probably won’t see to its end.
- The Knicks tried to sign Gordon Hayward this past offseason, and they’re expected to pursue Talen Horton-Tucker come next summer.
Duds and Studs: Yesterday’s slate roundup
- #FreeBeal. That’s it, that’s today’s take on yesterday’s games. Beal led the slate with a pretty great game to the tune of 64 DKFP. All Beal did was, in Westbrook absence, drop 34 pops on Phoenix to go with 8 boards, 9 dimes, 2 steals, and a block. Mental game from the Beal, which is cooked to the perfect point right now and waiting to be shipped to a customer out of Washington willing to pay his price. I hope the Wiz come to their senses and free Brad because the man is a beast currently caged in DC.
- In a not super-slim night of games—there were seven of them—we still got to watch just two players in the 50-to-60 clip: Siakam keeps heating up and put up a trip-dub (22-13-10) against Portland in a losing effort, while Vucevic logged a 32-minute dub-dub (28-13-5) against Milwaukee.
- As many as 18 players in the 40-to-50 DKFP clip, including...
- The ROI King award went to... Carmelo Anthony! It feels damn good to have Melo making it to this section. At just $4.2K Melo played 35 minutes off the bench for the Blazers, helped Portland snatch the W with a 20-5-3-2-2 stuffed line, hit 4 triples, and reached all of 40 FP on a very sweet night for the future HOFer. Kevin Knox and Brandon Goodwin were valuable but could top 31 FP, while Richaun Holmes put up 47+ at just $5.9K.
- And the DOTS (Dud of the Slate) Award went to... Julius Randle! About time this fool hits the DOTS. Randle has actually been so good that he made the algorithm believe he was much better than he actually is, so the price skyrocketed, and the Randlewus put up a serious dud with just 24 DKFP. He still finished with a reasonably good 11-5-5 line, but that’s nothing given his fifth-highest price among players eligible for yesterday’s contests. FVV, John Collins, and Ayton sucked big time too.
- There were nine dub-dubs via points and rebounds (Lamelo fell two points short, Dwight three, and three more players were just one board from getting there) and one between points and dimes (CP3’s 14-11, with Beal/Fox/Brodgon just one assist short).
- We went back on track with triple-doubles yesterday, with Siakam logging a 22-13-10 line against Portland. It could have been a night full of fireworks, but tons of players fell short by a bit (LaMelo 8-14-7, Beal 34-8-9, Kyle Anderson 8-6-9...)
- More silly numbers: Oladipo snatched 6 possessions while Richaun Holmes swatted 6 shots—if you’re wondering, yes, Myles Turner kept up his average with 3 himself.
What’s cooking? Statistical trends from Week 3 (Jan. 4th to Jan. 10th)
- It sounds very stupid, but two guys (even on small samples of just three and two games) were able to keep up averages of 65+ DKFP per game: Doncic and Beal. Luka closed last week averaging a 30-12-11-2 line in his three games, while Beal dropped a 50-5-4 nightly line. Jesus Christ those 50 pops a game.
- Tim Hardaway Jr. was the only player to average 25+ PPG last week while carrying an average salary below 6K. The next player below that price was De’Andre Hunter, already down at 20.0 PPG.
- The minutes have worked in Jarrett Allen’s favor, as the biggie-fro has played 30.5 MPG this past week and closed it averaging the cheapest dub-dub of all men at 15-11-3. Thank God Brooklyn finally came to its senses and put Allen in the starting five.
- The algorithm has yet to catch up with LaMelo Ball’s game, no less than the youngest of trip-dubbers in NBA history. Ball has played four games this past week putting up an average of 43 DKFP at just $6.2K. Somehow, the Hornets keep playing him off the bench and starting Rozier and Graham...
- Silly cheap values: Hamidou Diallo, Khem Birch, Haliburton, Troy Brown Jr., Dorian Finney-Smith
- A little more expensive but still with massive ROI: LaMelo, Tim Hardaway Jr., PJ Washington, De’Andre Hunter, Jerami Grant, Caris LeVert
- Some very expensive players not doing enough to help their owners: Trae Young, Russell Westbrook, Bam Adebayo, Devin Booker, Tobias Harris
- Cheap points (min. 3 games played in the past seven days): Mills, Maxey, Diallo, Justin Holiday, Gary Harris, Cam Johnson, Lonnie, Pritchard, Temple
- Cheap threes: Mills, Cam Johnson, Danny Green, Temple, Rivers, Justin Holiday, Brook Lopez
- Cheap boards: Dwight Howard, Khem Birch, Willie Cauley-Stein, Juan Hernangomez, JaMychal Green, Derrick Favors, Maxi Kleber
- Cheap dimes: Damyean Dotson, Pritchard, Augustin, Ish Smith, Pat Beverley, Danny Green, Delon Wright, Theo Maledon, Brad Wanamaker, Mills
- Cheap steals: Gorgui Dieng, Patrick Williams, Ish Smith, De’Anthony Melton, Stanley Johnson, Jevon Carter, Grayson Alen, Derrick Jones
- Cheap blocks: Brook Lopez, Marc Gasol, Pat Beverley, Daniel Gafford, Derrick Favors, Maxi Kleber
- Cheap FG% (min. 9 FGA): Diallo, Maxey, Gary Harris, Pritchard, Justin Holiday, Austin Rivers, Taurean Prince, Cam Johnson, Danny Green
Gotta Win The Day: Best/Worst DraftKings plays for tonight’s slate
- Love: Domantas Sabonis (PF/C). The Pacers are facing the Warriors in a back-to-back set of games, something that has only happened another time this season (Dec. 26th-27th). Sabonis played those two games, and even more, went from 34 minutes in the first one to 40 in the second. Sab Jr. played 39 minutes yesterday, but he won’t be resting tonight. Victor Oladipo, on the other hand, was noncommital to his availability for today’s game in which would mark his first back-to-back appearances since coming back from injury more than a while ago. If Dipo is in, Sabonis still has a nice 40-DKFP floor. If Dipo is out, Dom might explode against the fifth-worst defense in preventing fantasy points. Don’t rule out a 55-to-60 DKFP day from Domas.
- Hate: John Wall (PG). While Wall has been fantastic so far this season, even more considering his recent/injured past, I’m not trusting him in this the second leg of a two-game affair against the Lake Show. See, Johnny was good against LA two days ago putting up a 40 FP game with a 14-10-5 dub-dub, only that that was possible thanks to an outlier of a performance in which Wall bested his rebounding season-high by four boards. Wall has also scored 14 points in three of his last four games, which meh. Also, check this out: Wall’s last four games have gone for 24, 43, 25, and 40 fantasy points. If I know anything it is that series repeat over time so you know what’s coming; a sound 25 fantasy-point game for Wally that won’t cut it for me—nor you, nor anyone—tonight.
- Love: Hamidou Diallo (SG). Whatever the Thunder are doing, they’re doing it well. Everybody assumed OKC was going to big-time tank the season away, bag some noice draft picks here and there, trade their still-reasonably-good vets, and just ditch the year in favor of a shinier future. But the Thunder are 5-4 through Monday, and part of that record has to do with Diallo’s game. In his last two, Hami has reached the exact same 43 DKFP against both New York teams to the tune of a 23-11 dub-dub against the Knicks and then a 25-3-4-4 stuffed line against BKN. All of that in 29 and 23 minutes shooting a mental 66.5 percent on 27 total FGA. The spurs are just the 22nd-best D against fantasy players and also field a ton of inexperienced players, so odds are Diallo goes for another sweet bounty of DKFP.
- Hate: Rudy Gobert (C). While Donovan Mitchell is starting to (slowly but surely) get things right, Gobert is going in the opposite direction. The Croissant started the season with four consecutive 40+ DKFP games, averaging a 17-15 line, and shooting 75.7 percent from the floor. In his other (last six) games, though, Gobert is down to a 9-13 line and only blocks are saving his fantasy upside as he’s swatted 3.6 BPG in that span. The shooting stroke is down to 41.8 percent these days, the turnovers are piling up, and the more DoMi eats, the worst Gobert looks. The Cavs have another tower in Dre Drummond out there in the paint, so this whole situation calls for a fade of Gobert.
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!