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Plays of the Day
Value: With Kawhi Leonard (concussion) out and Kyle Anderson (leg) headed towards a game-time decision, Jonathon Simmons become a no-brainer value option against a shorthanded Warriors team that’s expected to sit basically their entire starting lineup tonight. Simmons is averaging 12.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.4 steals per 36 minutes this season and sporting a 20.6% Usage Rate with Leonard off the floor this year and he burned the Dubs with a good line on opening night.
Fade: Giannis Antetokounmpo came down to earth to a degree on Friday and he’ll draw a somewhat difficult matchup against the Wolves tonight. Minnesota tends to limit opposing wings that can’t shoot and The Greek Freak will likely post plenty of peripheral stats, but might fall short in the scoring department.
- Sacramento Kings (+5.5) hosting Denver Nuggets (Over/Under = 215.5)
- Portland Blazers (-5) hosting Washington Wizards (Over/Under = 222.5)
Damian Lillard (POR) vs. WAS DK:$8,600/FD:$8,700
Dame and John Wall face off tonight in a premier PG matchup, but for my money, I’d consider Lillard a much better per dollar option. He’s significantly cheaper and has regained his all-NBA form with averages of 25 PPG, 6.9 APG and 5.9 RPG over 13 appearances since the start of February. Lillard is a proud guard whose been playing with a chip on his shoulder since he came into the league with little fanfare and he always seems to step up in bigtime H2H matchups. While he only managed 22 points over 28 minutes in a blowout loss at Washington earlier this season, Lillard averaged 28.5 PPG and 8.5 APG over 2 meetings with Wall and the Wiz last year.
Kemba Walker (CHA) vs. NO DK:$8,100/FD:$8,400
He was quiet in a 40-point blowout win over the Magic last night, which should help Kemba preserve his energy for the second half of this B2B set. Tonight the Hornets are hosting a Pelicans team that can score with anyone, but remains extremely vulnerable on the defensive end, especially against opposing guards. New Orleans coughs up the fourth-most FPPG (45.62) and fifth-most PPG (24.32) to opposing PGs this season and Walker went for 25 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists the last time he faced the Pels. He’s always more dangerous at home and is almost assuredly going to carry the Hornets offense in any close games, so give him a look as a correlation play with Boogie or The Brow.
Ty Lawson ($4900/$5500) should bounce back from a rough outing at the Spurs in a plus matchup against his former team in the Nuggets. Yogi Ferrell ($5200/$5200) remains a solid cash game option in the mid-tier range.
Putting up huge numbers after flopping on Thursday would be the most Mike Conley ($7900/$7700) thing Mike Conley could do. You can use Matthew Dellavedova ($3700/$4000) if Malcolm Brogdon (back) is officially ruled out.
Seth Curry (DAL) vs. PHO DK:$6,800/FD:$6,200
I’ll be opting to pay up for talent at other positions tonight and will therefore look to save a little at SG. While there are even cheaper options with more upside than Curry, he’s established a great floor as a high-usage player for the Mavericks with 18-plus points in 6 straight appearances. He’s averaging 22.1 PPG while shooting 54.8% from the floor during that span and draws a fantastic matchup at home tonight against the weak Suns defense. Phoenix coughs up the fourth-most FPPG (42.21) and most PPG (26.7) to opposing SGs over the last month, while Curry has shot 10-for-14 from the floor to produce 28 points over 2 meetings with the Suns this season.
Evan Fournier (ORL) vs. CLE DK:$5,700/FD:$5,600
The Magic were absolutely steamrolled in Charlotte last night and no one on their roster produced much to write home about. Yet Fournier continued his upward trend with 14 points over 25 minutes and he’ll be worth a look as a GPP play against a porous Cavs backcourt defense. Cleveland allows the second-most FPPG (43.04) and fifth-most PPG (25) to opposing SGs over the last month and became even worse on that end of the floor with J.R. Smith (knee) returning from his lengthy absence. If Nikola Vucevic (Achilles) returns tonight, Orlando should be a little more competitive at home, but if he’s out, Fournier will be the man with his team-high 27.9% Usage Rate when Vooch is off the floor this season.
Ian Clark ($3000/$3500) and Patrick McCaw ($3300/$3600) are both in play as extreme values with Steph, Klay and Iggy all resting for the Warriors in addition to the injured Kevin Durant.
Dion Waiters ($6500/$6800) es en fuego por el Heat and he draws a good matchup tonight against the exhausted Raptors backcourt.
LeBron James (CLE) @ ORL DK:$11,000/FD:$11,600
The King has returned with 4 consecutive massive performances and the good news for DFSers is that his team lost 3 of those 4 contests. That means LeBron will have to continue to put his head down and grind in the hopes that his transcendent talent can overcome the Cavs many weaknesses on both ends of the floor and carry Cleveland’s frontcourt with Kevin Love (knee) still out. James is averaging 27.4 PPG, 10 APG and 9.9 RPG since the start of February and sporting a 32.2% Usage rate while averaging 1.39 FPs per minute with Love off the floor this season. Tonight he should have his way against a Magic team that ranks 25th in total rebounding and 20th in defensive rating while fading rapidly down the stretch.
Jonathon Simmons (SA) vs. GSW DK:$3,900/FD:$3,600
With Kawhi Leonard (concussion) out and Kyle Anderson (leg) headed towards a game-time decision, Simmons become a no-brainer option against a shorthanded Warriors team that’s expected to sit basically their entire starting lineup tonight. Simmons is averaging 12.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.4 steals per 36 minutes this season and sporting a 20.6% Usage Rate with Leonard off the floor this year. Tony Parker (back) is also questionable, so the Spurs might use more of a makeshift offensive game plan tonight against the suddenly vulnerable Warriors and if you’ll recall, Simmons was at the heart of San Antonio’s beatdown of a healthy Warriors team on opening night.
Matt Barnes ($3300/$4200) should see a much bigger role for the Warriors tonight and his matchup improves drastically with Leonard out.
Bojan Bogdanovic ($5000/$4300) could have another hot shooting night in a potential shootout at Portland.
Nikola Jokic (DEN) @ SAC: DK:$10,300 as C/FD:$10,100
The Joker returned last night and only needed 27 minutes to flirt with a triple double in a plus matchup against the Celtics. He’ll have another easy opportunity to fill it up tonight against a Kings team that’s ranked 24th in defensive rating and has been very vulnerable down low since DeMarcus Cousins got traded. Jokic is posting insane averages of 19.4 PPG, 11.2 RPG and 6.1 APG since the start of 2017 and he’s a great bet to produce bigtime DFS totals with the possibility for bonuses on DK in this matchup.
Dirk Nowitzki (DAL) @ PHO: DK:$6,100/FD:$6,200
Dirk is turning back the clock and having a lot of fun while reaching the 30,000-point milestone and cementing his status as one of the greatest international players in NBA history. He’s now averaging 14.4 PPG and surprisingly enough, 10.6 RPG over his last 5 appearances, which indicates that he’s found his competitive spirit while hoping to lead the Mavericks to the wide-open eighth seed in the WCF. Tonight Dallas should find plenty of opportunities to score and rebound against a Suns team that plays at the third-fastest pace and coughs up the second-most PPG (112.9) in the NBA this year and Dirk’s role might continue to expand with Nerlens Noel (knee) likely inactive.
Marquess Chriss ($4900/$4600) has been great for the rebuilding Suns and he draws a plus matchup tonight in Dallas.
LaMarcus Aldridge ($6400/$6900) never really seems to assert himself enough, but he’ll have to step up with Kawhi Leonard out tonight.
DeMarcus Cousins (NO) vs. CHA: DK:$10,100/FD:$10,500
The Hornets defense has generally been poor since the first month of the season, but they have one glaring weakness: No true center. With Cody Zeller attempting to match up with the biggest humans on the planet while battling a nagging quad injury, Charlotte is coughing up the fifth-most FPPG (49.39) and third-most RPG (16.2) to opposing centers this season. Cousins torched that soft interior D for 35 points and 18 boards back when he was a usage monster with the Kings, and while he’s seeing less opportunities to shoot while playing alongside Anthony Davis, Boogie is capable of exceeding value in this juicy matchup even with a somewhat diminished workload.
Jusuf Nurkic (POR) vs. WAS: DK:$6,800/FD:$6,700
While he finally draws a tougher matchup against a bully his own size in Marcin Gortat, Nurkic is still very much under priced on both main DFS sites right now. The Bosnian Beast went for a career-high 28 points with 20 boards, 8 assists, 6 blocks and 2 steals to post a monstrous 81 DK points (77 FD points) in a fantastic matchup against the Sixers on Thursday and he’s capable of at least producing half of those totals to exceed value as a mid-tier play tonight. Washington plays at a pretty good pace and coughs up an above average 15.17 RPG along with 46.68 FPPG to opposing centers this year, so it’s not unreasonable to keep rolling with Nurk regardless of the matchup until his price tag rises.
Zaza Pachulia ($3500/$4300) is a solid value and he should see more usage with so many Warriors resting. Alan Williams ($6500/$5600) came through with another productive line on Thursday and he faces the worst rebounding team in the NBA tonight.
Alex Len ($4100/$4500) is a longshot alternative to Williams, as he has an opportunity to take over as the Suns center if he can earn it through his play.