USA Today/Bob Donnan

Scouting The NBA DFS - Sunday, March 19

We've got a 5-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: Josh Richardson comes at a very modest price tag on both main DFS sites and his playing time should rise with Dion Waiters (ankle) ruled out tonight. It appears that HC Eric Spoelstra is going to play the matchups with so many wings available to him off the bench, but Richardson seems like a better bet to guard C.J. McCollum tonight than rookie Rodney McGruder or offensive-minded Wayne Ellington, so feel free to punt at SG with him.

Fade: Kyrie Irving might return to action in a dream matchup against the Lakers, but it’s hard to trust him to produce as much offensively with Kevin Love back and J.R Smith jacking up shots at every opportunity. Paying $10K for Irving on FD ahead of a potential blowout seems insane.

Game Lines

  1. New Orleans Pelicans (-3) hosting Minnesota Wolves (Over/Under = 208)
  2. Miami Heat (-6.5) hosting Portland Blazers (Over/Under = 211)

Point Guards

Two Studs

Damian Lillard (POR) @ MIA DK:$8,700/FD:$8,700

More than the matchup, it’s just about how Lillard is playing and how he can find motivation when compared to the other top scoring option at PG tonight in Kyrie Irving. The Cavs just rested their big three and will likely take it somewhat easy while thrashing the Lakers tonight, but the Blazers (+6.5) will be hard pressed to get a win at all against a Miami team that’s been red hot since the beginning of 2017. The Heat has good DvP splits against opposing PGs and good overall defensive numbers, but Lillard is more than capable of scoring in bunches against mediocre defender Goran Dragic and most importantly, he’s been just as hot lately with averages of 31.3 PPG and 4 APG over his last 6 appearances.

Jordan Clarkson (LAL) vs. CLE DK:$5,900/FD:$5,700

A blowout win for the Cavs could potentially limit their stars, but the Lakers are going to stick with the players they want to develop regardless of the score tonight. Clarkson is developing at a much more rapid rate than the struggling D’Angelo Russell, and he’s coming off an impressive performance with 21 points and a full line in a brutal matchup against the Bucks. Now he faces a Cleveland team that gives up an above average 22.99 PPG and 43.79 FPPG to opposing PGs on the season and will only be worse defensively if Kyrie Irving (knee) returns to action tonight. Clarkson’s usage has been very high with at least 16 FGA in each of his last 6 appearances and he’s averaging 21.4 PPG while routinely meeting or exceeding value during that span.

Potential Value

Deron Williams ($4600/$4000) should see some extra run tonight in a dream matchup against the Lakers.

Longshot

Tony Parker ($4000/$4300) has been quiet since returning to action for the Spurs but he could find his rhythm against the lowly Kings defense. Also like Jeff Teague ($6200/$6600) as an under priced stud with some upside in Toronto.

Shooting Guards

Two Studs

DeMar DeRozan (TOR) vs. IND DK:$7,700/FD:$8,800

His price tag continues to drop due to a string of relatively quiet performances, but Kyle Lowry ain’t walking through that door for the Raptors quite yet. Tonight, Toronto (-3.5) hosts Indiana in what should be a dogfight and of course they’re going to have to rely on DeRozan to carry the offense once again. He’s sporting a 40.5% Usage Rate and averaging 1.45 FPs per minute with Lowry off the floor this season and is still shooting a solid 42.6% from the floor while averaging 20 PPG, 5.2 RPG and 4.2 APG over his last 6 appearances. Now that he’s down in this price range, DeRozan is more of a solid cash game play given his ridiculous usage, and he always has the potential to blow up while scoring 30-40 points against a mediocre defensive team.

Josh Richardson (MIA) vs. POR DK:$4,600/FD:$4,100

He seems like the most likely beneficiary with Dion Waiters (ankle) ruled out tonight and Richardson happens to come at a very modest price tag on both main DFS sites. His playing time has been somewhat sporadic since he returned from his own injury a couple of weeks ago, yet Richardson logged 32 minutes after Waiters departed Miami’s win over Minnesota on Friday and he played 37 minutes against Indiana two games prior. It appears that HC Eric Spoelstra is going to play the matchups with so many wings available to him off the bench, but Richardson seems like a better bet to guard C.J. McCollum tonight than rookie Rodney McGruder or offensive-minded Wayne Ellington, so feel free to punt at SG with him.

Potential Value

Rodney McGruder ($3000/$3500 as SF on FD) is worth a look as a min-cost punt play for Miami. Jordan Crawford ($4400/$3500) has been instant offense for New Orleans and he could thrive off the bench against a weak Minnesota defense.

Longshot

J.R. Smith ($4400/$3700) is getting plenty of run with Kyle Korer (foot) out and he could go off against a Lakers defense that’s worst in the league over the last month.

Small Forwards

Two Studs

Kawhi Leonard (SA) vs. SAC DK:$10,000/FD:$9,900

It appears as thought Kawhi and LeBron are in similar situations with their teams expected to blow out an overmatched opponent tonight, but for $2K cheaper on FanDuel, Leonard seems like the safer option. He’s not as good a bet for a triple double, but Kawhi is seeing more usage as the primary scorer for the Spurs and he’s certainly found it easy to score against the lowly Kings with averages of 25 PPG on 51% FG shooting (18-for-35) over 2 meetings this season. Sacramento ranks 22nd in opponents FG shooting (.462%) and 25th in total rebounding while sharply declining on the defensive side of the ball in part due to DeMarcus Cousins’ departure. Look for Leonard to have a big first three quarters and hopefully meet value before resting down the stretch.

Andrew Wiggins (MIN) @ NO DK:$6,700/FD:$7,100

If you’re going for pure upside and want to avoid using either MVP candidate in potential blowout wins, Wiggins is the risk-reward play to use at SF on this short slate. He’s found a rhythm again with 47 points on 19-of-46 (41%) FG shooting over his last 2 appearances and should continue to fire away from the perimeter while Karl-Anthony Towns battles with the Pelicans’ Twin Towers. New Orleans is giving up 22.08 PPG and 38.72 FPPG to opposing SGs over the last month and Wiggy is playing more at the 2 with Zach LaVine done for the year. He’s averaging 21 PPG over 2 meetings with the Pels and should be productive in a potential shootout tonight.

Potential Value

Wayne Ellington ($3900/$4000 as SG on FD) could also see a rise in usage with Dion Waiters out for Miami.

Longshot

Brandon Ingram ($4900/$4400) will have a tough time defending LeBron if he’s asked to do so, but will otherwise play heavy minutes even if the Lakers are blown out.

Power Forwards

Stud

Anthony Davis (NO) vs. MIN: DK:$10,800/FD:$11,400

While DeMarcus Cousins (ribs) is expected to play tonight, even the hint of him being limited vaults Davis into must-play territory. The two superstars out of Kentucky are fitting together rather nicely on the offensive end and Davis has actually seen a rise in production since Cousins joined the Pelicans 10 games ago. He’s averaging 26.7 PPG and 11.2 RPG during that span and tonight he’ll face a Wolves team that he’s scorched for 43.5 PPG and 11.5 RPG over 2 meetings this season. Apparently a one-on-one matchup with a younger former Wildcat in Karl-Anthony Towns lights a fire under The Brow and he’s always a good bet for a huge double double when the Pelicans (-3) host a poor defensive team such as Minnesota.

Potential Value

James Johnson ($5800/$5900) is another player who could benefit for the Heat with Waiters out. Skal Labissiere ($4500/$4200) is coming on strong for the Kings late in the season as they look to develop their players.

Longshot

LaMarcus Aldridge ($6300/$7000) has been back for a couple games for the Spurs and could continue to produce in a much easier matchup against the Kings tonight.

Centers

Two Studs

Hassan Whiteside (MIA) vs. POR: DK:$8,500/FD:$8,800

You’d think that Miami will look to establish Whiteside down low a little more with one of their best scorers and best closer unavailable tonight in Waiters. Whiteside sports a 23.8% Usage Rate while averaging 0.51 points and 1.15 FPs per minute with Waiters off the floor this season and he faces a Blazers team tonight that’s been very vulnerable down low. Portland allowed Whiteside to go off for 28 points, 16 rebounds and 5 blocks in one of his best games of the year earlier this season and still cough up the fifth-most PPG (110) in the NBA along with the seventh-most FPPG (23.64) to opposing centers over the last month. Whiteside posts notable home/road splits and should carry Miami’s frontcourt at home tonight.

Ivica Zubac (LAL) vs. CLE: DK:$5,600/FD:$4,300

He’s a much better option for some salary relief on FanDuel, but Zubac has an opportunity to exceed value on DK if he can reach the double double bonus on that site. The Cavs are playing with plenty of pace and hoisting tons of threes, which opens up defensive rebounds for the biggest player on the opposing team. Indeed, Cleveland coughs up the most RPG (18.54) and third-most FPPG (53.86) to opposing centers over the last month and might be willing to rest some of its starting bigs in what should be an easy road win tonight. Zubac has been unreliable to say the least, but he has the backing of management and could certainly exceed value when given a full slate of run considering he’s averaging 16.9 points, 9.8 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per 36 minutes this season.

Potential Value

Pau Gasol ($5200/$6000) is a more reliable value on DK in the same price range as Zubac.

Longshot

Jusuf Nurkic ($6700/$6300) is really a great upper-tier option in any format, as he remains under priced due in part to a rare dud against New Orleans last week.


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