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Scouting The NBA DFS - Thursday, March 2

We break down tonight's 3-game slate of NBA action and bring you the best DFS plays on DraftKings and FanDuel

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Plays of the Day

Value: Patty McCaw seems like the best punt play to consider in the Warriors first full game without Kevin Durant. He might draw the start for KD after playing 24 minutes in relief of the injured superstar on Wednesday and McCaw is sporting solid per 36-minute averages of 9.8 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists on the season, which would certainly be enough production to exceed value at the minimum price.

Fade: Frank Kaminsky continued to roll with an impressive line against the Lakers on Tuesday but Cody Zeller is back in action and could log more minutes tonight, while Frank the Tank draws a tougher matchup against the physical young Suns.

Game Lines

  1. Portland Blazers (PK) hosting Oklahoma City Thunder (Over/Under = 219)
  2. Chicago Bulls (+7.5) hosting Golden State Warriors (Over/Under = 218.5)

Point Guards

Two Studs

Stephen Curry (GSW) @ CHI DK:$10,000/FD:$10,600

And so with Kevin Durant (knee) out for the rest of the regular season, we return to the status quo in which the Warriors elite offense runs through Curry, by Curry and for Curry. That approach allowed Steph to win B2B MVPs and it should keep this team afloat while their other superstar misses 4-6 weeks of action. Steph sees a bit of a price bump in anticipation of his increased role, which makes sense considering he’s sporting a team-high 36.3% Usage Rate while averaging 0.92 points and 1.40 FPs per minute with Durant off the floor this season. He’ll face a poor Bulls defensive back court that is coughing up an above average 43.84 FPPG and the second-most APG (9.75) to opposing PGs this season and is fully capable of erupting after struggling from beyond the arc in consecutive games.

Damian Lillard (POR) vs. OKC DK:$8,800/FD:$7,700

After a lengthy stretch of lackluster performances, Lillard is finally starting to resemble the budding superstar that he looked like over his last couple of seasons and in the first two months this year. He narrowly missed a triple double with a huge line (34 points, 11 rebounds, 9 assists) in an OT loss at Detroit on Tuesday and is averaging 31.7 PPG, 7.3 RPG and 6.3 APG over 3 appearances since the ASB. Tonight he’ll go H2H with Russell Westbrook again and he’s been up to the challenge throughout his career with averages of 22.3 PPG and 6.7 APG over his last 10 appearances against the Thunder. While Westbrook is putting up monstrous line and is certainly worth a look in his own right if you can afford him, his defense is suffering as the Thunder allow the fifth-most FPPG (46.96) and fourth-most PPG (26.2) to opposing PGs over the last month, so Lillard might be able to carry the Blazers in another high-scoring affair.

Potential Value

Shaun Livingston ($3200/$3600) looked like one of the biggest beneficiaries from Durant’s absence when he scored 14 points with a full line over 24 minutes on Wednesday night.

Longshot

Rajon Rondo ($5300/$5200) will look to put up numbers with his pass-first ways in a fast-paced game against the Warriors tonight.

Shooting Guards

Two Studs

Klay Thompson (GSW) @ CHI DK:$7,200/FD:$7,000

Thompson is right behind Curry in terms of Usage Rate (33.8%) with KD off the floor this season and he’s going to have to step up his offensive output as well over the next month or two. The Bulls are giving up the fifth-most FPPG (42.24) and most PPG (26.2) to opposing SGs over the last month as Dwyane Wade has certainly lost a step and he very well could struggle to chase the younger Thompson off screens tonight. Klay is capable of going nuclear at any point and he dropped 28 points on 10-of-18 FG shooting while playing just 29 minutes in a blowout win over Chicago earlier this season.

Patrick McCaw (GSW) @ CHI DK:$3,000/FD:$3,500

Like the Spurs before them, the Warriors elite offensive machine will not stop because one great player went down. Guys like Ian Clark and newly signed Matt Barnes will step in at SF and contribute, while McCaw seems like the best punt play to consider in the first game without Durant. He might draw the start for KD after playing 24 minutes in relief of the injured superstar on Wednesday and McCaw is sporting solid per 36-minute averages of 9.8 points, 3.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists on the season, which would certainly be enough production to exceed value at the minimum price.

Potential Value

Ian Clark ($3000/$3500) is as good a bet to produce in the absence of Durant and he might be a better play than McCaw if this game gets out of hand. Alex Abrines ($3600/$3500) could bounce back with a better line in Portland tonight if Oladipo (back) remains out for the Thunder.

Longshot

You can always use C.J. McCollum ($7300/$7500) instead of Damian Lillard in GPP formats, because one of those Blazers guards is going to go off against the Thunder.

Small Forwards

Two Studs

Jimmy Butler (CHI) vs. GSW DK:$8,900/FD:$9,000

While Dwyane Wade draws a very tough individual matchup against a great defender in Klay Thompson, Butler should be free to operate against the Durant-less Warriors. Jimmy Buckets is always capable of stepping up to carry his Bulls in tough matchups and he averaged 25.5 PPG on 49% FG shooting over 2 meetings with the WCF champion Warriors last season. Durant’s absence might be felt even more on the defensive end, where he led the team in rebounding and blocked shots for stretches, while matching up with the opposition’s best wing player. Butler should abuse inexperienced defenders in McCaw or Ian Clark and while Andre Iguodala can give him a run for his money, the Bulls best player is clearly the man to target in a home game against the shorthanded title favorites.

T.J. Warren (PHO) vs. CHA DK:$5,500/FD:$5,800

If Warren can manage to meet value in a brutal matchup at Memphis in his last game out, I’m willing to trust him as a mid-tier option every time he takes the floor. He’s been extremely solid since P.J. Tucker was moved at the trade deadline with averages of 19 PPG, 6.3 RPG and 1.3 SPG over 3 appearances and he draws a plus matchup tonight against a Hornets defense that’s been reeling over the past several months. Charlotte coughs up an above average 38.4 FPPG to opposing SFs this season and Warren should feel comfortable going H2H with his contemporary in Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, while Nicolas Batum looks to slow down Devin Booker in a premier SG matchup.

Potential Value

Maurice Harkless ($4800/$4800) remains an extremely solid cash game play with Evan Turner out. And as I’m typing Jimmy Butler’s section, I realize that Andre Iguodala ($4900/$4800) is going to have to play more minutes than usual while guarding the Bulls star.

Longshot

Doug McDermott ($3300/$3800) is bringing some much needed scoring pop off the bench for the Thunder and he could thrive in an uptempo matchup at Portland.

Power Forwards

Two Studs

Draymond Green (GSW) @ CHI: DK:$8,000/FD:$8,300

Of course, if the Warriors revert back to their modus operandi from last season, Green should see a huge spike in production. He was already starting to come around after getting a disciplinary benching over the weekend and he erupted with 14 points, 8 rebounds and 14 assists to produce 52.5 DK points (48.6 FD points) in Washington on Wednesday after Durant left that game early. His rebounding average has dropped from 9.5 to 8.1 per game with KD joining the Dubs but now he should return to his role as essentially the sole source of defensive rebounding and toughness in the paint for the small-ball Warriors. Chicago is a below-average defensive team against PFs that becomes much worse without tough veteran Taj Gibson, so Green is looking at another solid outing on the road.

Marquess Chriss (PHO) vs. CHA: DK:$4,200/FD:$4,500

With the Suns fully committing to the youth on their roster, Chriss has emerged right beside Warren as a reliable value play. He’s averaging 12.8 PPG and 5.5 RPG over his last 4 appearances and draws a good matchup tonight against an overrated Hornets defense. Charlotte coughs up the third-most FPPG (47.92) to opposing PFs over the last month and Chriss should be able to win the battle on the boards against undersized 4 Marvin Williams.

Potential Value

Taj Gibson ($3700/$4400) is worth a look as a cash game play with the Thunder facing a porous Blazers defense.

Longshot

Nikola Mirotic ($5000/$4200) seems better suited than Bobby Portis to match up with the Warriors in Chicago tonight.

Centers

Two Studs

Jusuf Nurkic (POR) vs. OKC: DK:$5,600/FD:$5,400

Nurkic had an off game against a tough Toronto defense, but we can allow him one lapse during his brief tenure with Portland. Other than that, he’s been a fantastic value option who continuously exceeds value as the Blazers only real defensive presence in the paint and he should log heavy minutes once again in an effort to contain the ‘Stache Bros of Steven Adams and Enes Kanter. If Nurkic can avoid getting into foul trouble while contesting Westbrook’s drives, he should be productive on both ends of the floor and exceed value on both main DFS sites once again.

Enes Kanter (OKC) @ POR: DK:$5,200/FD:$5,900 as PF

Kanter plays with such a high motor that he doesn’t need a ton of playing time to pay off his price tag. Yet his conditioning seems to be improving and he’s logged 51 minutes over his last 2 appearances, producing 35 points and 18 rebounds while narrowly missing a double double in both games. He might be able to reach that double double bonus tonight against a Blazers team that plays with plenty of pace and ranks 22nd in total rebounding this year, while Portland gives up an above average 16.33 RPG to opposing centers over the last month and the third-most FPPG (45.84) to opposing PFs on the season.

Potential Value

Zaza Pachulia ($4300/$4600) is hardly an exciting play, but he continues to meet value and could see a slight bump in playing time with Durant out.

Longshot

Alan Williams ($4400/$4900) is another cheap member of the Suns youth movement and he could thrive in a plus matchup against Charlotte.


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