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. And on top of that, I’ll bring you some statistical trends from the past week of games!
Gotta Win The Day: Best/Worst DraftKings plays for tonight’s slate
- Love: Paul George (SG). Back-to-back 45+ FP performances from Plethoric P, folks. It’s happening. George is back to his good ways after putting up a couple of stinkers prior to that. The lines are astonishing at 28-7-5-1-1 against Dallas on Wednesday and 21-5-10 facing Charlotte a couple of days ago. Even more, PG13 dropped 5 and 4 treys in those two, shot 50%+ from the floor in both, and went from 4 TOs to none in his last outing. Damn, son. George has somehow fooled the algorithm into keeping his salary as low as possible for someone as hot as he comes, so you know what to do. Oh, by the way, Atlanta is the foe tonight so it’s not that PG will have it hard to rack up points even if he just plays like 30 ticks or something like that. Must-play man of the day.
- Hate: Zach LaVine (SG). Top-10 salary for a man that has exactly three top-10 scores in fantasy slates since the break, that is, in the last six games. ZLV average final rank is a stupid 33rd-best in the slates he’s been part of, alternating a top-3 finish with one as bad as the 86th-best player... just yesterday against the putrid Pistons. And it is not that he didn’t have the opportunities to thrive: 29% usage rate, 16 FGA, and 33 minutes of play ain’t no joke, yet all Zacharias did was drop a low 18-3-1 line with 4 TOs and a paltry 38% shooting from the floor. That’s the thing with LaVine these days. The randomness and volatility are high as hell, and there is no recognizable pattern in that string of performances. For someone as expensive as he is, I’d rather have some solid floor, but it sadly ain’t present here. Fading.
- Love: Terry Rozier/Devonte’ Graham (PG/SG). Sucked to hear, but it is the harsh reality: LaMelo seems to be done for the year with a wrist injury. Ugh. The only positive is that both Terry Rozier and Devonte’ Graham have all of a sudden turned into massive-upside plays still going for quite cheap salaries. Graham is probably the main beneficiary, of course, because he had lost most of his chances with Melo excelling. Rozier has been a little bit of a bouncy and risky bet, sure, but he’s out there returning nice ROI values every night with 20+ pops more often than not, and pairing those with some boards and dimes. Graham has been playing fewer than 20 MPG on average in March with all games coming after the break, but he will make it back to the starting PG position now and he will most probably get back to his early-season 34 minutes a pop. We have yet to see how this gets back to work and if it produces nice fantasy goodies, but odds are the returns on investment are great given the low prices and the absence of Melo.
- Hate: DeMar DeRozan (SF). Can’t hate a lot on DeDe, but the salary and my projection don’t align at all. DeMar is entering tonight’s slate at $8.5K yet my calculation has him at 39 FP. That means that there are five players expected to rack up more fantasy points at lower salaries, and like 10 or so more that should reach around 37+ fantasy points while also being tagged with lower prices than DD. Easy to spot the fade here, folks. On top of that, these are DeRozan last four games: 31 FP, 56, 30, 53. What the hell is going on right there!? One thing is to be a little bit bouncy, which is reasonable, but another one is to log games distance by 20 freaking FP one after the other. The points seem to always be there with DD hitting 20+ in all those four, but the rest of the cats are absolutely unpredictable with the boards ranging from zero to 6, the dimes from 4 to 13, the steals from none to 4, and the TOs from 1 to 4. Not trusting this man just one bit.
- Love: Jrue Holiday (PG). I don’t have any freaking idea what’s going on here. Indiana has the 6th-best fantasy D in the Association. Jrue is back in full force and has started all last five games after the break while playing 34 MPG per. He’s dropping buckets, pulling down boards, dishing out the rock, and stealing possessions with gusto. His average line from Mar. 11 on reads 17-5-4-1. This man, though, is carrying a silly $6.8K salary tonight. Say what!? That’s right. Holiday projects to a massive 42 FP on the slate (keep an eye on Khris Middleton too who projects to 45) but is the 34th most-expensive player on it. LOL. Jrue clearly slept through the algorithm cracks, so you know what to do.
What’s cooking? Statistical trends from Week 11-12 (Mar. 15 to Mar. 21)
- For some with so strong stat-sheet-stuffing tendencies as Russell Westbrook, it is surprising that he doesn’t top the weekly fantasy leaderboard more often. He finally did during the past seven days and four games he’s played. Russ put up an average of 68 FP while keeping up a 28-12-13-1 line in that span. Not bad, even more considering he dropped the most efficient per-minute mark of the week at 1.75 FP/min.
- Luka Doncic is the only other player to break the 65-FP barrier, though his contributions were lower all-around with a 35-8-9-1 line. Giannis, Jokic, and Harden all reached 60+ FP on the week.
- Nikola Jokic tied Russ for the most FP/min (1.75), but he reached that mark averaging four fewer minutes per game, making Russ’ feat more impressive all things considered.
- Among the 60-FP group of players, Luka was the most “stable” one as he logged a deviation of just 9 FP per game. A little less explosive on the total FP leaderboard, yet virtually a lock to hit 48 FP nightly was Jaylen Brown, who logged a stupidly low 2.2 FP deviation in the past four games.
- Only Russ and Giannis were able to close the week averaging trip-dubs, although Anteto did so in just three games compared to Westbrook’s four. James Harden and Trae Young dub-dubbed on dimes, while 11 other players did so on points and boards (Jokic and Julius Randle both came just 1.5 APG short of trip-dubbing).
- Silly cheap values: Moses Brown, Poole, Bullock, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Theis, Len, Lonnie, Satoransky, Danny Green, Grayson Allen, Marcus Morris, Claxton, Looney.
- A little more expensive but still with massive ROI: Joe Ingles, DiVincenzo, Keldon Johnson, Wiggins, Ricky Rubio, Anthony Edwards, Jaylen Brown, Holmes, Aaron Gordon, Thad Young, Buddy, Mason Plumlee, Fournier
- Some very expensive players not doing enough: Trae, LeBron, Sabnois, Tatum, Lowry, Porzingis, Morant, Jarrett Allen, C.J. McCollum
- Cheap points (min. 3 games played): Poole, Loonie, NAW, THT, Bullock, Patty Mills, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Frank Jackson, Marcus Morris, Moses Brown, Alex Len, Isaiah Stewart, Grayson Allen
- Cheap threes: Bullock, NAW, Mills, Poole, Devonte’ Graham, BogBog, Jerome, Kleber, Marcus Morris, Otto Porter
- Cheap boards: Moses Brown, Daniel Theis, Len, Tony Bradley, Markieff Morris, Connaughton, Stewart, Aminu, McGee, Whiteside
- Cheap dimes: Satoransky, Campazzo, Rondo, THT, Osman, Cam Payne, Theis, Saben Lee, Kenrich Williams, Jerome, Caruso, Cory Joseph, BogBog, Mills
- Cheap steals: Campazzo, Bullock, Satoransky, Osman, Neto, Jaden McDaniels, Grayson Allen
- Cheap blocks: Claxton, Moses Brown, Thybulle, Bitadze, Whiteside, Biyombo, NAW, Derrick Jones
- Cheap FG% (min. 8 FGA): Poole, Frank Jackson, THT, Bullock, Loonie, Moses Brow, Marcus Morris, BogBog
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!