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Plays of the Day
Value: Marc Gasol appears to be so cheap on DK because of talk that his minutes will be restricted to open the season, but he’s logged 63 minutes over their first two games and it appears that he’ll only really have to sit if the Grizzlies wind up in an overtime game. That limits his upside to an extent, but Big Spain should have no trouble meeting value at just 5.6K on DraftKings tonight, as he’s averaging 19 PPG and 32.6 DK PPG through 2 appearances this season.
Fade: Hassan Whiteside is rolling to open the season, but now he faces a savvy Spurs front line that just held Anthony Davis in check and will almost certainly scheme to take away Miami’s most dangerous weapon down low.
Games to Target
- Oklahoma City Thunder (-7.5) hosting Los Angeles Lakers (Over/Under = 214)
- Houston Rockets (-6) hosting Dallas Mavericks (Over/Under = 216)
Russell Westbrook (OKC) vs. LAL DK:$12,200/FD:$13,000
Now THAT is a price tag to make you think twice about playing Westbrook. The safest play in DFS this season has reached the price point where he’ll likely stick after flirting with a triple double on Opening Night and producing a monstrous triple double with 50+ points to enter the record books on Friday night. Now he faces a Lakers squad that coughed up the second-most FPPG (45.8) and most APG (9.28) to opposing PGs last season and always seems to inspire greatness out of the Los Angeles native. This year’s Lakers team is much more competitive, as they managed to beat the Rockets and hang tough in Utah over their first two games, so it’s not surprising that the Thunder (-7.5) are only moderate favorites at home tonight.
Ish Smith (DET) vs. MIL: DK:$5,200/FD:$6,200
Ish was a great contrarian play on a full Friday slate after his entire team dropped a dud in their opener, and he remains relatively cheap ahead of another good matchup. Milwaukee gave up the sixth-most APG (8.84) to opposing PGs last season and started to become more vulnerable defensively when Giannis Antetokoumpo was handed the keys to the offense and their pace of play increased as a result. The Bucks are also on the second half of a B2B set, which will make it tough to lock down a speedster in Smith. He found a rhythm in PnR sets with Andre Drummond on Friday and might have had more than 9 assists if the Pistons hadn’t won so easily, so Smith is a solid option in any format as Detroit prepares for a tough home game.
J.J. Barea ($4500/$5100) should remain a steady member of the Mavs rotation even if Dirk Nowitzki (illness) is able to return to the lineup tonight.
Matthew Dellavedova ($3900/$4400) flashed much more upside in his second game as the Bucks starting PG. He’s going to have a solid year for Milwaukee and his price tag will only rise from here.
Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) vs. DET: DK:$8,800 as PG/FD:$9,500
It bears mentioning James Harden as the obvious elite option at SG on DK tonight. Yet it might be virtually impossible to play the Beard alongside Westbrook and two nights ago it proved to be a vital mistake if you opted for the Rockets PG. The Bucks also have an unconventional PG in Antetokounmpo, who has picked up where he left off with 52 points, 20 rebounds and 8 assists over his first 2 appearances this year. Those assist numbers should rise eventually, but in any case, The Greek Freak is a good bet for cash games given his ability to score at will and the fact that he’s facing a Pistons team that coughed up 22.8 PPG (ninth-most in NBA) last season. Giannis totaled 24 rebounds and 12 dimes over his last two meetings with Detroit last year and the youngster shouldn’t have any issues on the second half of a B2B.
Eric Gordon (HOU) vs. DAL: DK:$5,200/FD:$5,300
Using Gordon is a great way to get some exposure to the Rockets hyper-speed offense without sacrificing all your salary to play Harden tonight. Those two guards will share ball-handling responsibilities with PG Patrick Beverley (knee) out indefinitely, and that’s turned Gordon into a much more reliable DFS play. He dropped 6 assists against the Mavs defense on Friday and continues to knock down open looks in this offense. Dallas is ranked 29th in 3PT defense (opponents shooting .490%), so Gordon, Trevor Ariza and Ryan Anderson could all have big nights from beyond the arc.
Wes Matthews ($4900/$5000) has been ice cold from deep in both of his appearances so far this season, but he’s playing huge minutes and still meeting value at this modest price tag.
Look, someone on the Warriors is going to bury the Suns tonight and it’s worth hoping that Klay Thompson ($6500/$6300) is the guy since he’s the cheapest of the Big Four.
Harrison Barnes (DAL) @ HOU: DK:$6,100/FD:$5,400
I’m not too excited to pay up for Kevin Durant in a potential blowout, or Kawhi Leonard in an unappealing matchup at their lofty price tags, so let’s look into the mid-tier values at SF tonight. Barnes put up 31 points with Dirk inactive on Friday night and he clearly presents mismatch issues for a Rockets team that only has one truly excellent defender in Trevor Ariza. While his peripheral stats leave something to be desired, Barnes is still very reasonable priced on both main DFS sites and his ability to score and rebound should keep his cash game appeal afloat.
T.J. Warren (PHO) vs. GSW: DK:$5,000/FD:$5,000
We have to mention Warren after he dropped a career-high 30 points on Friday night and kept the Suns in a game with one the Western Conference’s elite teams. He’ll look to repeat that feat with the Warriors visiting Phoenix tonight, and he should find some success in a fast-paced game even if Kevin Durant does a good job on him in half court sets. The NC State product is a solid defender in his own right and that’s earned him heavy playing time for a rebuilding Suns team, plus the Dubs are giving up the most DK PPG to opposing SFs so far this season, as they’re really struggling with their defensive communication.
James Ennis ($4300/$4100) has been rock solid for the Grizzlies over their first two games and he’s worth a look with Tony Allen (knee) still inactive.
Otto Porter ($4600/$4900) is a great mid-tier play with upside as one of the main pieces of the Wizards offense.
Draymond Green (GSW) @ PHO: DK:$7,500/FD:$8,300
Klay Thompson might be the cheapest of the Warriors Big Four, but he’s far less reliable than Durant or Green, who can contribute FPs in a variety of ways with his defensive efforts and passing ability. Draymond doesn’t necessarily need a full slate of minutes to meet value, and if this contest somehow remains close out in Phoenix, he could easily approach a triple double against a Suns team that coughed up an above average 42.8 FPPG to opposing PFs last season. Green averaged 7.8 rebounds and 7.3 assists to go along with 14.5 points per game in his four meetings with the Suns last season and his production doesn’t seem like it will taper off too much with Kevin Durant in the fold now.
Markieff Morris (WAS) @ MEM: DK:$5,600/FD:$5,600
Morris really struggled to fit into the Wizards system after being acquired at the trade deadline last season, but it seems as though he’s found his place in that offense over the course of the offseason and training camp. The talented PF debuted with 22 points on 9-of-18 shooting to produce 37 DK points (35.8) on Thursday in a tough matchup against the Hawks, so you shouldn’t have too many concerns about using him against a Grizzlies team that is on the second half of a B2B set and seems much less disciplined on defense now that David Fizdale is the head coach instead of defensive specialist Dave Joerger,
JaMychal Green ($4700/$5000) remains a solid value play with the Grizzlies on the second half of a B2B set and both Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph dealing with injuries/age.
Dirk Nowitzki ($6000/$7100) burned a lot of people on Friday night by not suiting up in a plus matchup against the Rockets, so he should be lightly owned in the same great draw this evening.
Andre Drummond (DET) vs. MIL: DK:$7,900/FD:$7,900
As predicted here on Friday, Drummond bounced back from an embarrassing beatdown at the hands of Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas with a bigtime double double (12 points and 20 rebounds) in a cake matchup against the Magic. He remains one of the best rebounders in the league and he draws a great matchup tonight against a Bucks team that ranked 29th in defensive rebounding and 27th in total rebounding last season. Big Dre went for 15.3 PPG and 17.8 RPG over 4 meetings with Milwaukee last season and his price tag is still reasonable because of how he opened his 2016-17 campaign.
Marc Gasol (MEM) vs. WAS: DK:$5,600/FD:$7,200
Gasol appears to be so cheap on DK because of talk that his minutes will be restricted to open the season, but he’s logged 63 minutes over their first two games and it appears that he’ll only really have to sit if the Grizzlies wind up in an overtime game. That limits his upside to an extent, but Big Spain should have no trouble meeting value at just 5.6K on DraftKings tonight, as he’s averaging 19 PPG and 32.6 DK PPG through 2 appearances this season. An individual matchup against Marcin Gortat and the Wizards is a bit daunting, but Gasol doesn’t force his offense against strong defenders, as he’s become an incredibly consistent mid-range shooter.
Timofey Mozgov ($4400/$4100) is a solid punt play to consider against the Thunder’s sizable front line. Also consider Zaza Pachulia ($3900/$4500) as a riskier punt play, who could put up a great line by facilitating to the Warriors great shooters.
LaMarcus Aldridge ($7100/$7600 as PF on FD) tends to take on more responsibilities when the Spurs are on the second half of a B2B set, which makes him worth a look in GPP formats.