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Scouting The NBA DFS - Thursday, March 16

We've got a 6-game slate of NBA action tonight and the Daily DFS Breakdown will help you cash on DraftKings and FanDuel

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Plays of the Day

Value: Caris LeVert has been very productive over his last 2 appearances with 29 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists during that span and he should remain a key part of the Nets offense in the Battle of the Burroughs tonight. New York is one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA and coughs up the fifth-most FPPG (39.11) to opposing SGs this season, while LeVert seems to match up well against a Knicks defense that he’s burned for 23 points on 8-of-13 FG shooting over 2 appearances this year.

Fade: Russell Westbrook put up another monstrous triple double in a cakewalk matchup at the Nets on Tuesday, but he faces a Toronto team that has some backbone on the defensive end and could force him to come up short of value at his exorbitant price tag.

Game Lines

  1. Denver Nuggets (+1.5) hosting Los Angeles Clippers (Over/Under = 222.5)
  2. New York Knicks (-3.5) hosting Brooklyn Nets (Over/Under = 221)

Point Guards

Two Studs

Chris Paul (LAC) @ DEN DK:$8,800/FD:$9,800

Paul was already going to be an intriguing GPP play in a bounce back spot against one of the worst defenses in the league, but now he’s worth consideration in all formats with news that Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan will both take tonight off to rest. With those players off the floor this season, CP3 is averaging 0.45 assists and 1.46 FPs per minute, so he should carry a heavier load in Denver. The Nuggets allow the second-most FPPG (46.65) and sixth-most APG (9.06) to opposing PGs this season while ranking 29th in defensive rating, so Paul should be able to get whatever he wants against a shorthanded opponent while looking for his shot much more often than usual.

Jeremy Lin (BKN) @ NYK DK:$6,000/FD:$5,900

Linsanity could very well return to MSG tonight with the Nets missing one of their main backcourt scorers in Sean Kilpatrick (hamstring). Lin continues to ramp up in terms of minutes and usage while he’s sporting a 28.4% Usage Rate and averaging 1.05 FPs per minute with Kilpatrick off the floor this season. The Nets PG is averaging 17.8 PPG and 4.4 APG over his last 5 appearances despite playing just 25.4 MPG during that span and he might be given a little more run in a plus matchup against the Knicks’ 25th-ranked defense this evening.

Potential Value

Jamal Murray ($4900/$4000) is a great value on FanDuel and he’s worth a look in all formats with Danilo Gallinari (knee) and Wilson Chandler (groin) ruled out for Denver. Deron Williams ($3600/$4200) is a low-upside punt to consider on DK.

Longshot

Love Austin Rivers ($3700/$4400) at this price tag with Griffin and Jordan out for the Clippers ahead of a plus matchup in Denver.

Shooting Guards

Two Studs

DeMar DeRozan (TOR) vs. OKC DK:$8,300/FD:$9,300

We’ve been shying away from him lately, but tonight seems like a good night to go back to DDR in a plus spot at home. The Thunder continue to compete by climbing on the shoulders of Russell Westbrook, yet remain vulnerable to prolific scorers on the other side of the ball, as OKC gives up the fifth-most PPG (24) and an above average 38.47 FPPG to opposing SGs over the last month. DeRozan’s efficiency has plummeted, but he’s still sporting a 40.5% Usage Rate and averaging 0.89 points per minute with Kyle Lowry (wrist) off the floor and will continue to carry the Raptors offense in what should be a competitive game tonight.

Will Barton (DEN) vs. LAC DK:$5,300/FD:$5,300

He was clearly a huge beneficiary with Wilson Chandler (groin) on the shelf and Barton becomes an even more appealing play now that Danilo Gallinari (knee) is expected to miss a couple of games for Denver. The swingman sports a 24.2% Usage Rate and averages 0.92 FPs per minute with both of those SFs off the court this season and he should be able to exploit a Clippers defense that’s weak on the wing. Barton went for 22 points and 6 assists over 30 minutes in a home tilt against the Lakers and the Nuggets have been awaiting the tired Clippers, who just lost a close tilt to physical Milwaukee and have to travel to altitude for the second half of a B2B set.

Potential Value

Iman Shumpert ($3500/$3700) has been a reliable cash game play with Kyle Korver (foot) out and J.R. Smith not yet back to speed.

Longshot

J.J. Redick ($4300/$4000) and Jamal Crawford ($4100/$4000) should both see more looks with Blake and DeAndre out. Alec Burks ($3200/$3500) is worth a punt if Rodney Hood (knee) sits for the Jazz.

Small Forwards

Two Studs

LeBron James (CLE) vs. UTA DK:$10,400/FD:$10,500

I’ll take a discounted LeBron all day regardless of the difficulty of his matchup. Utah is a great defensive team, but if any individual or defensive scheme could contain The King than he wouldn’t be the consensus best player in the world. As long as Kevin Love (knee) remains out, and he’s not expected to return until at least next week, James and Kyrie Irving will post huge usage rates for the Cavs in defense of the top seed in the ECF. LBJ posted a triple double over just 28 minutes of playing time in a blowout win over Detroit and the Jazz is a much, much more complete team that will force him to play heavy minutes if Cleveland (-7) wants to get a home win tonight.

Caris LeVert (BKN) @ NYK DK:$4,000/FD:$4,400 as SG

The Nets rotations have been messy all year but we can finally expect a little clarity with Sean Kilpatrick (hamstring) out indefinitely. Even with Kilpatrick in the mix, LeVert has been very productive over his last 2 appearances with 29 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists during that span and he should remain a key part of the Nets offense in the Battle of the Burroughs tonight. New York is one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA and coughs up the fifth-most FPPG (39.11) to opposing SGs this season, while LeVert seems to match up well against a Knicks defense that he’s burned for 23 points on 8-of-13 FG shooting over 2 appearances this year.

Potential Value

Matt Barnes ($3900/$4300) is bringing some much needed toughness to the Warriors reserve unit and playing an interchangeable role with Andre Iguodala right now.

Longshot

Carmelo Anthony ($8100/$8400) is worth GPP consideration tonight against the lowly Nets defense with Kristaps Porzingis (thigh) doubtful.

Power Forwards

Two Studs

Nikola Jokic (DEN) vs. LAC: DK:$10,600 as C/FD:$10,600

News that DeAndre Jordan will rest tonight turns Jokic from a potential fade to arguably the best overall play on a 6-game slate. The Joker is obviously rolling with averages of 17.6 PPG, 11.3 RPG and 6 APG over the last 2 months (17 appearances) and now he’ll face a combination of washed-up poor defender Marreese Speights and undersized PF Brandon Bass. Jokic has not only struggled to score on Jordan, but has struggled with foul trouble while logging just 24.6 MPG over 3 meetings with the Clippers this season, so DeAndre’s absence is a Godsend to the Nuggets young phenom.

Draymond Green (GSW) vs. ORL: DK:$8,000/FD:$8,300

The Warriors are really struggling right now and barely managed to come back from a double-digit deficit at home against the lowly Sixers. That means we should see production from someone in a Magic uniform in another home game for the Dubs, while it also means that Golden State’s starters have a much better chance of putting up big numbers. Green went nuts in Tuesday’s comeback effort with 20 points, 8 rebounds, 8 assists, 4 steals and 6 blocks and he draws a great matchup tonight against an Orlando team that ranks 25th in opponents FG shooting (.465%) and 30th in defensive rebounding this year. Orlando gives up the fourth-most FPPG (47.98) to opposing PFs over the last month and is clearly more vulnerable down low with Serge Ibaka traded.

Potential Value

The aforementioned Marreese Speights ($3300/$3500) and Brandon Bass ($3000/$3500) are both definitely in play as punt considerations with Blake and DeAndre out.

Longshot

If Kenneth Faried (back) is out in addition to Gallinari and Chandler, Juancho Hernangomez ($3900/$4300) could see enough run for the Nuggets to exceed value.

Centers

Two Studs

Rudy Gobert (UTA) @ CLE: DK:$6,800/FD:$7,700

The Cavs have an obvious weakness with Kevin Love out and it’s their ability to secure defensive rebounds. That spells trouble ahead of a matchup with the Jazz and Gobert, who is under priced as a very good bet for a double double bonus on DK tonight. He went for 11 points and 14 boards in a meeting with Cleveland earlier this season and has been rolling with averages of 15.3 PPG and 11.3 RPG over his last 4 appearances despite sitting out one game due to knee soreness. Cleveland is giving up the fourth-most FPPG (53.39) and second-most RPG (17.82) to opposing centers over the last month and desperately need K-Love back in the fold.

Guillermo Hernangomez (NYK) vs. BKN: DK:$6,200/FD:$6,000

With Porzingis doubtful due to a thigh injury, you might be tempted to roll with Carmelo Anthony ($8.1k, $8.4k) but he’s very inconsistent for a player in that price range and doesn’t draws as juicy of an individual matchup as Wily. Hernangomez is coming off a bigtime double double with 13 points and 16 boards against the Pacers and it only gets better as the Knicks prepare to host a Nets team that plays at the fastest pace in the league and gives up the most PPG (114.2) along with the third-most FPPG (49.98) to opposing centers on the season. He’s far too quick for Brook Lopez and has been very efficient with averages of 12 PPG and 10.7 RPG despite playing just 18.6 MPG over 3 meetings with Brooklyn thus far this year.

Potential Value

Zaza Pachulia ($3900/$4300) was quickly pulled in a matchup with the small-ball Sixers, but he should be asked to guard Nikola Vucevic and the much bigger Magic frontcourt tonight.

Longshot

Mason Plumlee ($5500/$5800) could see significant run tonight if the Nuggets look to exploit the shorthanded Clippers down low.


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