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: Zion Williamson (PF/C). Zion is bonkers, man. The critiques here and there will keep coming because fools don’t know shit, but this guy is destined for greatness. Since the three-point line was introduced back in 1980, only Michael Jordan scored more points than Zion in his first 66 games as a pro, though Zion is doing it at higher efficiency and per-minute rates with 27.8 PTS/36 compared to MJ’s 26.3. The Pels played yesterday and are facing Dallas tonight, but man, it’s hard to pass on Z-Will. He comes off dropping 39 pops on Denver to go with 10 boards and 5 dimes, has reached 40+ FP in all five of his last games, and 47+ in four of them. Yet the salary isn’t sky-rocketing, something hard to understand. Smash that “+” button and build your lineup around Zion.
- Hate: Julius Randle (PF/C). What winning does to you, dawg... Jules is tagged with the third-highest salary of the slate and the largest for a biggie (other than Giannis) for tonight’s affair with the Bucks. I’m sorry, but I don’t like paying this much for the Randlewus on this very Saturday. See, it isn’t that long ago that New York faced Milwaukee (Mar. 11), and all Julius did was basically putting up a 26-FP dud to the tune of a 7-8-6 line shooting 25 percent on 12 FGA. Ugh. Not only that, but Randle comes off a stinker against the Wiz a couple of days ago in which even playing 37 minutes he could only reach 32 FP on a night he closed at 13-9-4-1. It could have been a fluke, sure, as Randle has been great after the break, but the minutes were ultra-high and the excuses short. Look for value in other places because this salary is just too much to pay for.
- Love: John Wall (PG). Stinky Johnny Wall made an appearance yesterday, and even then he put on his Russell Westbrook boots and reached some neat 47 DKFP. If you don’t understand anything about the last sentence, this was Wall’s line: 14-3-15-2-2 (great) but on a stupid 24% shooting from the floor on 25 (!!!) FGA and 7 TOs. The 27 true shooting percentage was bad as hell, and the usage sky-high at 37%. That’s what happens when you’re part of a squad like the Rockets’, I guess... This is nothing new for Wall, who has been racking up opportunities and touches and finishing possessions all year long, but it’s only going to get even crazier going forward given that Houston is molly-barren of talent. Hard to not bank on Johnny against the third-worst fantasy D in Minny’s and with such a monster projection (45+ FP) at less than an $8.5K price tag.
- Hate: Ben Simmons (PG/SF). The Finals matchup hoops-hipsters would love to watch is happening tonight. Watch it closely and enjoy it, because you won’t be getting it again come postseason time (like it or not, we all know it’s destined to be LAL vs. BKN). Anyway. Simmons has been a little bit on the low lately. In six games after the break, he’s averaging 40 FP but that’s more than anything because of an out-of-place explosion of 53 FP against Milwaukee in which he played a monster 45 minutes back on Mar. 17. Other than that, Simmons has reached 40 fantasy points just once in the six-game span, which sucks for his price. Just this past week he’s played just slightly above league-average efficiency levels, averaged a 15-7-6 good-not-great line, and returned low value for his fantasy GMs in games against teams that included the Warriors and the Lakers...
- Love: Mason Plumlee (C). Sneaky to the S play of the Slate. Mason P is a lock to hit 30 FP every goddam day. Plumlee is yielding monster ROI marks for his truthers, has dub-dubbed in four of the last six games he’s played (9 and 6 points in the other two), he’s grabbing 11+ RPG since the break, hitting 10+ PPG, and shooting a ridiculous 65% from the floor even on a super-small volume of shots. Plumlee is far from a slate-winning player, that’s obvious to say, but he’s one of the better lineup-fillers out there with an average 1.25+ FP/min since the AS weekend. Can’t get much better than this.
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!