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Plays of the Day
Value: T.J. Warren’s price tag was already set before he dropped 28 points on the Warriors last night, but you probably can't expect to see him this cheap again throughout the rest of the season. The NC State product is clearly ready to break out this year after dropping a career-high 30 points and both these teams are on the second half of a B2B set tonight, but the young legs of Warren and his teammates should give them an advantage over the older Clippers.
Fade: I would love to play DeMarcus Cousins in a reasonably good matchup against the Hawks tonight, but his price tag ($10,800) on DraftKings makes it too difficult. There’s a chance that a renewed Dwight Howard gives him some trouble on that end of the floor and the Hawks have been solid against Boogie in the past.
Games to Target
- Toronto Raptors (-7) hosting Denver Nuggets (Over/Under = 205.5)
- Los Angeles Clippers (-10.5) hosting Phoenix Suns (Over/Under = 206)
Eric Bledsoe (PHO) @ LAC DK:$7,100/FD:$7,400
Bledsoe has faced Chris Paul and the rest of his former teammates several times since he moved on to a lead role in Phoenix, with mixed results. Yet he’s continually improved his production in matchups against CP3 to the point that he came one assists away from a triple double (26 points, 10 rebounds, 9 assists) in his last meeting with the Clippers. Granted, he also turned it over 8 times in that contest, which makes him more of a GPP play on FD, but TOs aren’t really a big deal on DraftKings if you’re a star PG that’s getting heavy usage. Bledsoe is sporting a 22.3% Usage Rate with a 27.6% Assist Rate through 3 games with the Suns while Devin Booker is serving as a pure shooter and Brandon Knight is playing a limited role off the bench, so at a relatively modest price tag, he’s a solid option in what should be a fast-paced game at Staples Center.
Jeremy Lin (BKN) at CHI: DK:$6,300/FD:$6,500
The Nets are going to be starved for offense all season and that's why they've given the keys to their backcourt to Lin. It's always an adventure when he's given free reign to slash to the hoop, but there are few better guards in terms of finishing in the paint and often always seems to get Linsanity started when he can get a few tough ones to go. He predictably struggled on Opening Night against the Celtics stingy PG defense, but since then Lin's ripped up the Pacers and Bucks for 33 points and 19 assists over his last two appearances. Now he faces a Bulls team that gave up the third-most FPPG (45.17) to opposing PGs during Fred Hoiberg's first season as HC and will only be more vulnerable with gambling defender Rajon Rondo playing the point this year.
Ty Lawson ($5600/$5100) remains a low-upside mid-tier play as the Kings fill-in PG. Consider riskier plays such as Austin Rivers ($3300/$4500) or his adversary Dennis Schroeder ($6600/6300) if you’re looking for a play with more risk/reward.
Kyle Lowry ($7400/$7400) is a great tournament play to consider tonight given his lack of production over the first two games, as he could easily surpass teammate DeMar DeRozan in a great matchup for both guards.
DeMar DeRozan (TOR) vs. DEN: DK:$7,300/FD:$7,900
DeRozan seems to have put in some extra work this offseason and he is clearly emerging as one of the top 5 offensive players in the ECF. He dropped a whopping 40 points against the Pistons on Opening Night and surprisingly followed that up with 32 points against the Cavs elite defense last Friday night. Now DeRozan draws his first truly juicy matchup of the season against a Nuggets team that coughed up the fifth-most FPPG (38.02) and fourth-most PPG (22.59) to opposing SGs last year. Even with his lack of peripheral stats, DeRozan should be able to easily meet value at this reasonable price tag.
Sean Kilpatrick (BKN) @ CHI: DK:$3,600/FD:$4,000
The Nets roster is full of appealing value plays and some are riskier than others. While Bojan Bogdanvoic ($4600/$4300) is the backcourt starter and a player with more upside than Kilpatrick, he’s extremely inconsistent, while Kilpatrick has been reliable with averages of 15.3 PPG, 3 RPG and 1.7 APG over 23.5 MPG through 3 appearances this season. He’s simply a better matchup for Brooklyn from an athletic standpoint against the Bulls triple threat of Rajon Rondo, Dwayne Wade and Jimmy Butler, so we should Kilpatrick logged consistent playing time once again tonight with a good chance to meet value at this bottom-of-the-barrel price tag.
The Kings are much better defensively so far this year, but still rank 29th in opponents FG%, so Kyle Korver ($3700/$3800) or Tim Hardaway Jr. ($3500/$3700) could get loose and knock down some shots for the Hawks tonight.
Devin Booker ($6200/$6100) dropped an absolute dud against the Warriors last night, but he remains the primary scorer out of the Suns backcourt and he could bounce back in a plus individual matchup against J.J. Redick and the Clippers.
Jimmy Butler (CHI) vs. BKN: DK:$7,600/FD:$8,000
At least on FanDuel, playing Butler is almost necessary in order to get the most out of the SF slot on this short slate. He’s more of a contrarian play on DK after he dropped a dud against the Pacers on Saturday because he was concentrating more on his defensive efforts against Paul George, but Jimmy will be free to get buckets against a Nets squad with no discernible threat on the wing right now. He averaged 23.3 PPG on incredible 62.8% FG shooting over three meetings with the Nets last season, so he can clearly have his way against this weak defensive squad and he remains a great cash game option, who could exceed value if Brooklyn keeps it close on the road tonight.
T.J. Warren (PHO) @ LAC: DK:$5,400/FD:$5,500
His price tag was already set before Warren dropped 28 points on the Warriors last night, but you probably can't expect to see him this cheap again throughout the rest of the season. The NC State product is clearly ready to break out this year after dropping a career-high 30 points on the Thunder and the fact that the provided an encore against the WCF Champs two nights later indicates that his scoring prowess is quite reliable. The Suns and Clippers are on the second half of a B2B set tonight, but the young legs of Warren and his teammates should give them an advantage in what could the highest-scoring affair on this slate.
Thabo Sefolosha ($3700/$4100) has exceeded value in limited minutes thus far this season, which is a bit flukey, but he’s worth a look against the Kings. Consider DeMarre Carroll ($4500/$4600) as a more reliable cash game play at SF
I love Will Barton ($5700/$5300 as SG on FD) as a tournament play even if Gary Harris (groin) returns for Denver on a limited basis tonight.
Blake Griffin (LAC) vs. PHO: DK:$8,800/FD:$9,000
The Suns should be a fun team to watch this year and a great target for DFS purposes, as they’re playing at the seventh-fastest pace in the league and giving up the fourth-most PPG (110.7) through three games. Griffin has had his way with Phoenix in years past despite the presence of some solid defenders down low, and now the Suns are turning to a combination of ancient Tyson Chandler and slow-footed Alex Len at center. Their situation is even direr at the 4, where natural SF Jared Dudley is starting and getting backed up by rookie Marquesse Chriss. Blake should eat either of those players for lunch while maintaining his impressive averages of 22.5 PPG and 11.5 RPG to open the season.
Paul Millsap (ATL) vs. SAC: DK:$7,900/FD:$8,100
I actually prefer Millsap over Griffin at that price tag on FanDuel, as he simply fits better into cash game lineups or into GPPs with correlation stacks on the Kings side of the ball. Al Horford and Jeff Teague are out of town, while Millsap’s frontcourt mate Dwight Howard seems to be focused on defense and rebounding, leaving the keys to Atlanta’s offense squarely in his capable hands. He used that increased opportunity to drop 28 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists in a tough matchup against the Wizards on Opening Night before posting a quieter line in a blowout over Philly in his second game, yet the Kings are playing competitive ball this year, so Millsap should see a heavy workload in his third game of the season.
Trevor Booker ($4700/$5300) remains a great bet for a double double as the Nets starting PF.
Nikola Jokic ($7000/$6100) will likely be a boom or bust option all season at this substantial price tag. He’s worth a look as a correlation play with Raptors stacks in Toronto this evening.
Brook Lopez (BKN) @ CHI: DK:$6,900/FD:$7,600
As a GPP play tonight, BroLo comes with a lot of intrigue because he should be motivated as always to square off with his twin brother. In four meetings with Robin’s Knicks last season, Brook averaged 22.5 PPG and 7 RPG. The year before that, he posted averages of 26.5 PPG and 6 RPG against Robin’s Blazers and who knows how many of those individual battles he’s one dating back to when these two were growing up. Clearly the more skilled offensive player of the twins, BroLo draws a great matchup on paper against a Bulls team that coughed up the fifth-most FPPG (49.35) to opposing centers last year and is giving up 55.8 FPPG to the position so far this season.
Jonas Valanciunas (TOR) vs. DEN: DK:$6,700/FD:$6,400
JoVal seems quite under priced on DraftKings given his run of success to open the season, as he followed up a 32-point thrashing of Andre Drummond and the Pistons with a solid 10-point, 17-rebound double double against the Cavs on Friday. Now he'll face a Nuggets squad that possesses two dynamic talents down low in Nikola Jokic and Jusuf Nurkic, but what those Europeans flash in terms of offensive upside, they lack in defensive prowess, so don't be surprised if Valanciunas has another solid night manning the paint for the Raptors.
Jusuf Nurkic ($6100/$5200) remains under priced on FD and he should see plenty of playing time in an effort to guard Valanciunas.
Dwight Howard ($7500/$7800) could put up big rebounding numbers against the fast-paced Kings tonight, but he’ll have to stay out of foul trouble while guarding Cousins.