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Scouting The NBA DFS - Saturday, December 3

We break down Saturday's slate of NBA action to help you cash in DFS contests on DraftKings and FanDuel

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Plays of the Day

Value: Troy Daniels is an elite shooter and he’s worked on his game to the point that he can create his own offense, which is a valuable commodity for Memphis. While he isn’t providing many peripheral stats, Daniels should keep rolling against a Lakers team that ranks dead last in opponents FG shooting (.478%) and coughs up the fifth-most PPG (109.7) in the NBA while playing with plenty of pace.

Fade: DeMar DeRozan opened the season on a tear, but his lack of peripheral stats was always concerning and now he’s falling short of his lofty price tag on a consistent basis. With appealing value plays at this position, it seems best to fade the pure scorer in a relatively tough matchup against the Hawks second-ranked defense.

Games to Target

  1. Portland Blazers (-6.5) hosting Miami Heat (Over/Under = 214)
  2. Golden State Warriors (-16.5) hosting Phoenix Suns (Over/Under = 229)

Point Guards

Two Studs

Steph Curry (GSW) vs. PHO DK:$9,100/FD:$9,500

At first glance, the Warriors (-16.5) seem very likely to destroy the young Suns at home tonight, which would seriously limit the upside of both Curry and Kevin Durant as elite options. Yet that hasn’t always been the case when they’re double-digit favorites. Just think back to last weekend when the Wolves came to Oracle Arena as similar under dogs, but kept the game close enough throughout the first half and made a run during the fourth quarter that forced Curry to play a solid 37 minutes. He produced 34 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 56 DK points in that matchup and he’s playing 35.4 MPG over his last 5 appearances despite the Dubs sizable win differential during that span. With his team coming off a tough 2OT loss against the Rockets, Curry should go to work right away against a Suns team that coughs up the fifth-most FPPG (46.78) and most PPG (25.79) to opposing PGs this season.

Denis Schroder (ATL) @ TOR DK:$6,000/FD:$5,900

You might want save even more with Andrew Harrison ($5200/$4300) at that price tag on FanDuel, but Schroder is worth a slight pay increase on DK given his superior upside. With Paul Millsap (hip) ruled out for at least one more game, Schroeder will put the Hawks offense on his back once again and look to build on his last two performances. He’s averaging 24 PPG, 8.8 APG and 41.9 DK PPG over his last 3 appearances and he’s seeing a 31.8% Usage Rate with Millsap either hobbled or inactive during that span. Schroder posted a 100% Assist Rate and still managed to meet value with 31.75 DK points in a blowout loss to the Pistons last night, so he seems to have a great floor-ceiling combination under these circumstances and he could fare better against a Raptors squad that coughs up the fourth-most PPG (24.39) to opposing PGs this season.

Potential Value

Andrew Harrison ($5200/$4300) is still an excellent cash game play as the Grizzlies starting PG against a weak Lakers defense. Deron Williams ($4600/$5700) is a riskier value because he could suffer a setback with his calf injury, but he’s quite cheap on DK and has little competition for minutes or usage right now.

Longshot

Goran Dragic ($6800/$7100) could definitely get into a PG duel with Dame Lillard tonight and he’s a good bet for a double double against the Blazers 30th-ranked defense.

Shooting Guards

Two Studs

Zach LaVine (MIN) @ CHA: DK:$6,000/FD:$6,000

It seems like you can really save at SG for a second consecutive night or get similar production from top guys such as DeMar DeRozan or C.J. McCollum from the mid-tier options on the board, as they’re all pretty much pure scorers. LaVine has been filling it up with averages of 23 PPG on 47.7% FG shooting over his last 6 appearances and he’s playing a whopping 39.4 MPG during that span. He has a solid floor and plenty of upside, as demonstrated by his 31-point game against the Warriors and 28-8-8 line to produce 51 DK points against the Jazz last Monday, so he’s a good option in any format in a plus matchup tonight. The Hornets are coughing up the fifth-most DK PPG to opposing SGs this season and LaVine’s versatility as a scorer makes him a very tough cover for any team.

Troy Daniels (MEM) vs. LAL: DK:$3,400/FD:$3,700

Here’s an example of how you can really save at this position tonight without losing much in terms of safety. Daniels has scored 19 games in back-to-back outings for the shorthanded Grizzlies and his head coach David Fizdale said that if there was a light greener than green, his sharpshooter would have it. Simply put, Daniels is an elite shooter and he’s worked on his game to the point that he can create his own offense, which is extremely appealing for a team that just lost it’s floor general in Mike Conley for several months. While he isn’t providing many peripheral stats, Daniels should keep rolling against a Lakers team that ranks dead last in opponents FG shooting (.478%) and coughs up the fifth-most PPG (109.7) in the NBA while playing with plenty of pace. At close to the minimum price tag, you don’t need to expect much from him, but you might be pleasantly surprised.

Potential Value

Wayne Ellington ($4000/$4300) is another punt play with a solid floor as the Heat are trying to stay competitive without Dion Waiters or Josh Richarson active.

Longshot

Jeremy Lamb ($4000/$4100) burned owners when he left a game with a knee injury earlier this week, but he returned and produce impressive FP per minute totals on Thursday. You can consider Tony Allen ($4300/$4000) as a safer play in this price range.

Small Forwards

Two Studs

Jimmy Butler (CHI) @ DAL: DK:$8,400/FD:$8,800

The Bulls (-3.5) opened as seven-point favorites over the last-place Mavericks, but the smart money came rolling in on Dallas given the fact that Chicago just played an exhausting game against the Cavs last night. Dwyane Wade (rest) has already been ruled out for the second half of their B2B set, opening up more opportunities for Butler as the unquestioned primary scorer in this road game. Jimmy Buckets is averaging 1.26 FP per minute and sporting a 35.3% Usage Rate with D-Wade out of the lineup this year, while the tough kid averaged 18.9 PPG and 5.6 APG over 37.7 MPG when playing on 0 days rest last year. Lock him into lineups in any format if you believe the Mavericks can keep this game competitive.

Jae Crowder (BOS) @ PHI: DK:$5,900/FD:$5,300

Even in what you could consider a quiet game by his standards, Crowder produced 26.75 DK points (24.1 FD points) to meet value on both main DFS sites. That proves his safety as a rock solid cash game play and it should convince you to play him and hope for some more upside in a much better matchup tonight. The 76ers are giving up the most FPPG (43.40) to opposing SFs and give up the sixth-most PPG (107.8) in the NBA this season. Boston (-8.5) is certainly expected to win on the road tonight, but the Celtics defense has really taken a step back this year and they’ve really only blown out one team (Brooklyn) all season, so you can expect another full slate of minutes and solid production from Mr. Crowder.

Potential Value

Brandon Ingram ($4300/$4000) has exceeded value in four of his last five appearances and he appears to be locked into solid playing time with Nick Young on the shelf.

Longshot

I like Gordon Hayward ($7700/$7900) in GPP formats as a pivot away from Butler. P.J. Tucker ($4500/$4100) is a more affordable tournament play and he could see heavy minutes against the small-ball Warriors.

Power Forwards

Two Studs

Taj Gibson (CHI) @ DAL: DK:$5,500/FD:$5,800

This is another position at which you can save tonight without any notable studs at the top of the board. Gibson is not the most exciting GPP play, but he certainly helped out some winning tournament lineups with 23 points, 11 rebounds, 5 assists and 47.25 DK points (44.7 FD points) in a win over the Cavs last night. Tonight’s matchup against the Mavs might not be as physical, but his impressive performance on Friday should earn Gibson something close to the 40 minutes he played against Cleveland. He’s averaging 14.5 PPG, 9.3 RPG and 1 BPG over his last 4 appearances and remains a strong bet to double double against a Mavericks team that allows the fifth-most RPG (12.94) to opposing PFs this season.

JaMychal Green (MEM) vs. LAL: DK:$5,100/FD:$4,700

It appears that Zach Randolph (personal) will miss at least one more game for the Grizzlies, leaving Green as the sole legitimate option at PF for this shorthanded team. He bounced back nicely from a dud against Charlotte with 16 points and a full line in Toronto earlier this week and just helped Memphis edge Orlando, 95-94, despite playing just 27 minutes due to foul trouble. Tonight Green will be needed to match up with athletic PF Julius Randle and he should do a better job of staying on the floor, while the Lakers fast-paced offense should also create increased opportunities for him to score or rebound.

Potential Value

Ersan Ilyasova ($4700/$4600) was a dud last night, but you can roll with him in a much better matchup against Boston this evening with Joel Embiid (rest) inactive.

Longshot

Kenneth Faried ($5600/$5900) produced a double double with Nikola Jokic (wrist) inactive last night and he should be needed to board up in a physical matchup at Utah.

Centers

Two Studs

Hassan Whiteside (MIA) @ POR: DK:$9,000/FD:$8,600

On slates without Westbrook, Harden, Anthony Davis or even LeBron, it’s easy to pay up for the highest-upside at center. Whiteside is clearly a better tournament option than Karl-Anthony Towns given his ability to produce huge double doubles and he gets the slight nod over KAT tonight in my opinion because of the pace of play out in Portland. While both Charlotte (47.25 FPPG allowed) and Portland (47.69) give up plenty of production to opposing centers this year, the Blazers are giving up the third-most PPG (23.56) to that position and coughing up the second-most PPG (113.5) overall this year. Portland plays at the eighth-fastest pace in the NBA but ranks 25th in rebounding rate, so Whiteside should be able to dominate the glass and bounce back from a weak outing against Rudy Gobert and the Jazz.

Jahlil Okafor (PHI) vs. BOS: DK:$5,200/FD:$4,400

Okafor is a steal at this extremely modest price tag on FanDuel and he’s a good bet to exceed value on DK as well with Joel Embiid ruled out on the second half of Philly’s B2B set. The last time Embiid rested for a game, Okafor stepped up with 15 points and 5 boards over 25 minutes before taking a seat in a blowout loss. He produced a garbage-time aided double double last night to exceed value as well, and tonight he’ll face a Celtics squad that is giving up the second-most FPPG (50.79) to opposing centers this year and ranks 29th in rebounding rate on the season. Okafor has some personal history with Celtics fans and he usually brings his game when facing the 76ers divisional rivals, so expect a solid showing from him in tonight’s home tilt.

Potential Value

Mason Plumlee ($6000/$6000) is a solid option as always, but if you want to take more of a risk at a cheaper price tag, use Tyson Chandler ($4600/$4800) in a fast-paced matchup at Oracle.

Longshot

Mike Muscala ($4100/$3900 as PF on FD) has yet to take advantage of Millsap’s absence but he’s worth a gamble in GPP formats tonight. Jusuf Nurkic ($4100/$4400) is still a longshot even with Jokic out for the Nuggets.


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