There is less than a month remaining in the NBA regular season, which means that time is running out for certain teams to earn a spot in the playoffs. If the season ended today, both the Brooklyn Nets and the Los Angeles Lakers would be playing in the play-in tournament. But while the Nets have won three straight and are looking like a dangerous team in the Eastern Conference, the Lakers have lost eight of their last 10, putting them just 2.5 games ahead of the 11-seed Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference.
Instead of being upset about the fact that the regular season is nearing an end, let’s have fun with the final few weeks. In NBA DFS, there is still money to be made, meaning that I’ll be listing my favorite players at each position on DraftKings. We have a nice 12-game main slate on Wednesday, so let’s begin diving into who I like!
Pay-up option: Dejounte Murray ($10.700)
We have our choice of some fantastic options at the point guard position on Friday night. At the top, we have Luka Doncic, Dejounte Murray, Trae Young, and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (who is questionable). Doncic possesses the highest ceiling of the bunch, but I believe Murray has a similar ceiling and is $800 cheaper on DraftKings. Murray has scored 52+ DraftKings points in six consecutive games and he gets a favorable matchup versus the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night. The Thunder have surrendered the most DraftKings points per game (54.55) to point guards in their last 30 games, giving Murray a decent chance to have a ceiling game.
Value option: Patrick Beverley ($4,900)
To put it nicely, the Lakers are downright atrocious on the defensive end of the floor. Teams are scoring at ease against Los Angeles, making them a perfect team to target in DFS. Guards have given the Lakers issues all season and I don’t think that will change on Wednesday night. Patrick Beverley has been a welcomed addition to a surging Minnesota Timberwolves squad as he’s coming off a season-high 42 DraftKings points. Los Angeles has surrendered the second-most DraftKings points per game (51.99) and Beverley averaged 33.3 DraftKings points in his previous three matchups with the Lakers this season. I also like Ish Smith and Theo Maledon (if he remains in Oklahoma City’s starting lineup) if you need to save more salary at point guard.
Pay-up option: Devin Booker ($9,500)
James Harden and Kyrie Irving have the highest salaries at the shooting guard position, and I wouldn’t blame anyone for playing either of them. But while Devin Booker’s ceiling isn’t through the roof with Chris Paul, with Paul still sidelined, Booker’s ceiling rivals the other high-salary shooting guards. Booker has posted 53+ DraftKings points in four of his last six games as he’s recorded 7+ assists in six of his last seven games. To put the cherry on top, Booker gets to face a Houston Rockets team that plays at the fastest pace and owns the worst defensive efficiency in the NBA. Fred VanVleet and D’Angelo Russell are shooting guards I like in the $7,500-$8,000 range.
Value option: Malik Beasley ($4,600)
On Monday night, we had a player log a ‘Tony Snell’ game as Malik Beasley didn’t log a single stat in 19 minutes for the Timberwolves. In Beasley’s defense, he was likely in awe watching Karl-Anthony Towns score 60 points versus the San Antonio Spurs. After doing nothing but cardio on Monday night, I expect Beasley to get back to his scoring ways on Wednesday night. Before supplying zero DraftKings points on Monday, Beasley had 20+ DraftKings points in seven straight games. And with Beasley squaring off with a Lakers team that is allowing the most DraftKings points per game (46.48) to shooting guards in their last 15 games. If Eric Gordon is out again for the Rockets, I also like Josh Christopher as a value option at shooting guard.
Pay-up option: Scottie Barnes ($7,900)
Evan Mobley and Cade Cunningham are going to be the two most popular choices for Rookie of the Year when the season concludes, but Scottie Barnes has been playing much better as of late. Barnes has supplied 45+ DraftKings points in three of his last five appearances. He’s also combined for 15 assists in his last two games, so his ceiling could be higher if his passing numbers are similar moving forward. The Los Angeles Clippers have given up the ninth-most DraftKings points per game (48.71) to power forwards in their last seven games as Barnes plays both forward spots for the Toronto Raptors. If you want to save some salary at small forward, Mikal Bridges and Dorian Finney-Smith are other options I like on Wednesday.
Value option: Kevin Huerter ($4,900)
Aside from the Lakers, the Charlotte Hornets are a team I’ve targeted all year in DFS with fruitful results. The Hornets are the 8th worst team in defensive efficiency and they play at the fourth-fastest pace in the NBA, which tends to lead to notable performances from players that face them. Kevin Huerter has joined the starting lineup for the Atlanta Hawks and he's beginning to get into a groove in recent games. Huerter has made multiple threes in four straight games and he’s notched 23+ DraftKings points in seven of his last eight games. Even though he’s highly volatile, Grayson Allen could be worth taking a chance on against the Sacramento Kings if you want to spend way down at small forward.
Pay-up option: Julius Randle ($9,500)
“Skyler, why do you hate Giannis Antetokounmpo?” is what some of you might be saying since he’s not listed at small forward or power forward. I do not hate Antetokounmpo on Wednesday night and I might even have him in my main lineup when it’s all said and done, but I believe there are better options when you factor in salaries. The New York Knicks have been a mess this season, however, Julius Randle has been in a nice rhythm recently. Randle has taken 16+ shots in seven consecutive games — so the volume is there — and he’s had two 69+ point outings in his last four appearances. The Most Improved Player from last season also gets to go up against the Trail Blazers, who have given up the second-most DraftKings points per game (55.20) to power forwards in their last 15 games. Miles Bridges and Trendon Watford are other power forwards to consider on Wednesday.
Value option: Danilo Gallinari ($4,500)
Danilo Gallinari is dealing with an Achilles injury right now, but he’s probable to play for the Hawks on Wednesday night. While there’s risk in playing him, the matchup is tough to ignore for the veteran forward. Gallinari has produced 26+ DraftKings points in each of his last three outings while getting 28+ minutes of playing time in each of those contests. Amid Atlanta’s push for a spot in the postseason, Gallinari has become a key contributor for the Hawks as John Collins has been hobbled recently. Collins has been ruled out for Wednesday’s contest, meaning that Gallinari should receive a healthy number of minutes again. Even though using previous games against teams can be dangerous in DFS, Gallinari has averaged 29.4 DraftKings in his three games versus the Hornets this season.
Pay-up option: Nikola Jokic ($11,900)
Nikola Jokic could be $13,000 on the green site and I would consider him, regardless of the matchup. But on Wednesday night, Jokic is $11,900, putting him under $12,000 on DraftKings for just the second time since December 12th. Jokic is the best DFS performer this season, putting up 60.7 DraftKings points per game for the Denver Nuggets. On top of all of that, Jokic gets to go up against the Washington Wizards, who are allowing the sixth-most DraftKings points per game (58.09) to centers this season. If you’re someone that can’t get up to Jokic, Towns is a fine option against the Lakers, and Deandre Ayton has an ideal matchup versus the Rockets.
Value option: Onyeka Okongwu ($3,900)
What a shocker. To continue the trend of my value plays being a player from the Timberwolves or the Hawks, Onyeka Okongwu is my favorite value center on Wednesday night. Okongwu might be an undersized center in stature, but he’s a remarkable offensive rebounder and he can contribute in multiple areas. The young big man has gotten 20+ minutes of playing time in back-to-back games, resulting in 22+ DraftKings points in both contests. With Collins sidelined again, Okongwu should see more time on the floor to help the Hawks on the boards. The matchup is also a fantastic one as the Hornets surrender the third-most DraftKings points per game (59.04) to centers this season. You can also go with Precious Achiuwa, DeMarcus Cousins, or Nicolas Claxton on Wednesday night if you don’t like Okongwu.