Scouting The NBA DFS - Thursday, December 1

We break down tonight's 6-game slate of NBA action and bring you the top DFS plays on DraftKings and FanDuel


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Plays of the Day

Value: Andrew Harrison did his job with 21 points on 7-of-12 FG shooting along with 4 dimes and 3 steals over 35 minutes of run last night. He’s going to be highly owned tonight, but deservedly so at this modest price tag, and he’s still a very safe play along with the Grizzlies other high-usage players given the fact that they’re down to nine healthy bodies ahead of this home game against the mediocre Magic.

Fade: Kevin Love takes a lot of flak for his defensive performance, but he’s been solid this year and is a main reason why the Cavs allow the fifth-fewest FPPG (41.2) to opposing PFs this season. Blake Griffin has fallen short of value in 3 consecutive appearances and he might be a wise fade tonight.

Games to Target

  1. Golden State Warriors (-11) hosting Houston Rockets (Over/Under = 231.5)
  2. Brooklyn Nets (+5.5) hosting Milwaukee Bucks (Over/Under = 216.5)

Point Guards

Two Studs

Giannis Antetokounmpo (MIL) @ BKN DK:$9,900/FD:$10,300 as SG

He certainly doesn’t have the same floor as James Harden right now, but Antetokounmpo’s ceiling is just as high and he’s worth squeezing into DK lineups right next to The Beard on this short slate. Fresh off a dominant 34-point outing with tons of peripheral stats (12 rebounds, 5 assists, 5 steals and 2 blocks) to help the Bucks steamroll the Cavs on Tuesday, Giannis and his young teammates will face arguably the worst team in the ECF after defeating the perennial ECF champs. Yet this game has the second highest Over/Under tonight (216.5 points) and the Bucks (-5.5) are only slight favorites, so a blowout is not much of a concern. What should be concerning for the Nets is The Greek Freak’s incredible athleticism and unstoppable, gigantic euro step, as Brooklyn already gives up the most FPPG (55.70) to opposing PGs this year and that number could rise in a tough matchup tonight.

Andrew Harrison (MEM) vs. ORL DK:$4,400/FD:$3,900

Harrison’s excellent performance as the Grizzlies starting PG last night clarified a few things. Firstly, it created separation between the Kentucky product and backup Wade Baldwin IV, while it may have also reduced the Grizzlies sense of urgency when it comes to signing a veteran PG off the street. Memphis lost to an excellent Toronto team, but Harrison did his job with 21 points on 7-of-12 FG shooting along with 4 dimes and 3 steals over 35 minutes of run. He’s going to be highly owned tonight, but deservedly so at this modest price tag, and he’s still a very safe play along with the Grizzlies other high-usage players given the fact that they’re down to nine healthy bodies ahead of this home game against the mediocre Magic.

Potential Value

D.J. Augustin ($4600/$3700) has been starting at PG for Orlando and producing modest returns over his last several games. Deron Williams is a bargain at $4,000 on DraftKings, but still too risky and too expensive at $5,700 on FanDuel.


Chris Paul ($9100/$9100) should step up in tonight’s premier matchup between the Clippers and Cavs. Opposing teams attack Cleveland with guards and CP3 can burn Kyrie Irving all night.

Shooting Guards

Two Studs

James Harden (HOU) @ GSW: DK:$12,000/FD:$11,300

You can probably fade Harden on DK at that price tag and get away with it, but he’s an easy choice on FanDuel and a great bet for a huge game as long as Houston keeps it close at Oracle Arena this evening. The Warriors (-10.5) can pull away at any moment, but while these two teams are battling, we should see a fast-paced, high-scoring affair that is fantastic to target in DFS. Houston scores the fifth-most PPG (109.3) while Golden State leads the league in scoring (117.6 PPG) and obviously everything the Rockets do offensively runs through Harden, who is posting a career-high 54.6% Assist Rate and 34% Usage Rate this season. He “only” averaged 27.7 PPG on 37.9% FG shooting over 3 meetings with the Dubs last season, but this year’s version is inferior defensively and should allow The Beard to post a double double with the potential to grab double digit rebounds as well.

Sean Kilpatrick (BKN) vs. MIL: DK:$5,800/FD:$5,700

While he was listed as a longshot on Tuesday morning with the Nets expected to lose decisively to a full-strength Clippers squad, that changed when Blake Griffin was given the night off, as I quickly pivoted onto CP3, DeAndre Jordan, J.J. Redick and deployed Kilpatrick as a correlation play in the hopes the game went down to the wire. Sure enough, the Nets best scoring option went off for an incredible 31 points in the fourth quarter and overtime to stun the Clips, and he might have done enough to re-enter the SLU this evening. Even if he feels more comfortable coming off the bench, Kilpatrick has been red hot with averages of 24.8 PPG, 5.8 RPG and 3.8 APG while playing 33.5 MPG over his last 4 appearances and he’s sporting a 29.2% Usage Rate during that span. At this mid-tier price tag, it’s definitely worth hoping Kilpatrick stays hot in a plus matchup at home.

Potential Value

Tony Allen ($4100/$4000) is going to see extended run with the Grizzlies shorthanded and he can meet value through peripheral stats alone.


Tyler Johnson ($4900/$4800 as PG on FD) is worth a look with Josh Richardson and Dion Waiters both expected to sit for Miami again tonight.

Small Forwards

Two Studs

Kevin Durant (GSW) vs. HOU: DK:$10,200/FD:$10,200

The safest play on the high-scoring Warriors has been their superstar acquisition, as Durant is averaging 51.5 DK PPG (48.3 FD PPG) and has only dipped below 40 DK points (39.25 at Portland on 11/1) once this season. Tonight, Steph Curry will have to deal with pesky defender Pat Beverley, while KD should move around on offense and get open against aging SF Trevor Ariza. The Rockets are actually giving up the most PPG (23.88) to opposing SFs this season, so KD should be able to carry the league’s top offense in a game with a lofty 230-point Over/Under and shootout implications.

LeBron James (CLE) vs. LAC: DK:$9,300/FD:$9,700

It’s quite possible that a lineup featuring both elite SFs and fading James Harden could take down the big tournaments on this 6-game slate. Durant is a safe play with a bit more upside in a potential shootout, while LeBron is in a classic bounce back spot after his squad was embarrassed in Milwaukee two nights ago. Perhaps the Bucks represented a “trap game,” because LBJ has to be focused on facing a true contender and the Clippers, who presumably rested Blake Griffin ahead of this showdown. The Clips are a great defensive team, but that’s not really the case on the wing, where they’re vulnerable to prolific talents such as the reigning Finals MVP. LeBron is averaging 25 PPG, 7.2 APG and 6.4 RPG over his last 4 meetings with the Clippers, but I like his prospects more because of the circumstances and the inherent motivation derived from a bad recent loss.

Potential Value

Troy Williams ($4200/$3700) is playing big minutes for the Grizzlies out of necessity and that makes him worth a look in cash game formats. Also consider James Johnson ($4200/$4500) if Justise Winslow (wrist) remains out for Miami.


Michael Beasley ($3500/$3700) continues to see more and more playing time for the Bucks and he could ride his hot streak into a plus matchup against the Nets.

Power Forwards

Two Studs

Trevor Booker (MIL) @ BKN: DK:$6,000/FD:$5,900

You can try to pay up for Blake Griffin or Kevin Love at the top of the board at this position, but I might prefer fading one of those big names on FanDuel or sliding one of the studs at SF over to PF on DraftKings tonight. Neither Griffin nor Love draws a good matchup on paper, while Booker faces a Bucks team that ranks 29th in total rebounding and struggles to defend that paint. Milwaukee gives up the fifth-most FPPG (52.13) to opposing centers and is average against opposing PFs, but Booker is spending time at the 5 with Brook Lopez seemingly incapable of playing huge minutes. With a double double in three of his last five appearances and solid defensive averages throughout the season, Booker is an excellent mid-tier option with good upside on DK.

JaMychal Green (MEM) vs. ORL: DK:$4,500/FD:$4,400

Green bounced back nicely after he flopped while the Grizzlies were steamrolled in Charlotte earlier this week. The young PF produced 16 points, 5 rebounds, 5 steals and 35.25 DK points (34.5 FD points) last night, which is about his ceiling for as long as Zach Randolph (personal) remains out. There’s a chance that ZBo returns tonight for a home game, but Green would still serve as a solid value play in that case with a decent floor in a prime matchup against Orlando. The Magic coughs up the tenth-most PPG (21.0) to opposing PFs this season and Green can score inside and out.

Potential Value

Channing Frye ($3400/$3900) is more of a longshot punt play given his modest playing time with the Cavs. If you want a safer value, consider Dwight Powell ($3600/$3600) with Dirk Nowitzki ruled out tonight.


Serge Ibaka ($5800/$6300) has been hot lately and his matchup looks better with the Grizzlies missing several key pieces.


Two Studs

Brook Lopez (BKN) vs. MIL: DK:$6,700/FD:$7,300

While he took a bit of a shot at BroLo in the blurb on Trevor Booker, the Nets center did manage to log 43 minutes and play a huge role in that OT win over the Clippers two nights ago. Provided he’s healthy enough to play a full slate of minutes tonight, Lopez should be able to exceed value at this modest price tag on DK given his excellent matchup. Milwaukee has been awful against opposing centers, as HC Jason Kidd can’t even decide on a rotation between Greg Monroe, John Henson and Miles Plumlee. Lopez is also a bit more reliable at home, where he’s averaging 21.6 PPG and playing 29.1 MPG on the season, versus his splits of 18.5 PPG and 25.6 MPG on the road. Give him a look as a GPP play tonight in the hopes that the Nets play another close game against a good opponent.

Rudy Gobert (UTA) vs. MIA: DK:$6,500/FD:$7,100

He doesn’t quite have as much upside as his adversary Hassan Whiteside, but Gobert is significantly cheaper and seems to have a more consistent floor. Whiteside is an unbelievable talent, but he appears to be coasting on his natural ability and playing lackluster defense despite his lofty block numbers. That’s part of the reason why Miami gives up the third-most FPPG (52.65) to opposing centers this season and why it’s worth targeting Whiteside with an upper-tier option in Gobert. The Stifle Tower is averaging 13.4 PPG, 12.2 RPG and 3 BPG over his last 5 appearances and he’s produced at least 35 DK points in 8 of his last 10 starts, so he’s a great cash game play on that DFS site.

Potential Value

Since he’s no longer playing around 20 MPG with his new team, Andrew Bogut ($4000/$4500) has emerged as a quality cash game play.


John Henson ($4000/$4200) continued to flash upside while playing limited minutes and he might be asked to match up with Lopez and Booker tonight. Greg Monroe ($3900/$4600) also seems to be on the rise for the same Bucks team.

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