In the last week of the NBA season, the DFS landscape is truly like no other sport. Teams are currently battling for a playoff spot in the West, while others jockey for positioning in the East; and of course, a mix of teams are currently doing everything in their power to improve their draft positioning, as well. It’s a Taco Tuesday edition of the Gems – let’s ride.
One thing I want to clarify based on the questions I have received over the past few years is that I will never list a player under the $5,000 price tag simply because I use the projection model to identify all targets in this range and below. While there are often plenty of options that I like at $5,000 and less, since I often find myself with not only one – but multiple – in my NBA DFS lineups, you all have access to the very model I use to make my own selections, so when asking yourself: “Should I use player X or player Y?”, make sure to check the model because that is how I make all of my own decisions and I truly ride or die by it on a daily basis.
Before running to the DraftKings, FanDuel, or Yahoo lobby to construct your NBA DFS lineup after reading this article, please make sure to utilize the abundance of tools we have at Win Daily:
Despite San Antonio star Dejounte Murray missing this game with a serious illness, all eyes will be on the current MVP favorite, Nikola Jokic. Truth be told, even without Murray, the Spurs pose a threat to a Nuggets team that barely squeaked by the likes of OKC and Indiana in their recent stretch. Jokic comes into this one having posted 30 or more points in four of his last five games, sporting a 33.8% usage rate during that span and averaging 34.8/16.2/8.4 on 70.2% shooting. Decent numbers, if I do say so myself.
Want to get weird on this NBA slate? Let’s get weird. Pairing the league’s two best centers on the same slate to maximize raw points and ceiling in tournaments in certainly worth entertaining tonight, especially with Embiid chasing an MVP award that seems out of reach. Sure, Indiana is rebuilding, but Tyrese Haliburton and the Pacers can certainly play spoiler in this one, as they almost did versus the Nuggets last week. Embiid has been one of the best fantasy players all season long, averaging 30.2/11.6/4.2 on 49.3% shooting through a 36.8% usage rate. With Indiana’s interior simply in shambles with Domantas Sabonis now in Sacramento and Myles Turner on the shelf, Embiid could go nuts in this last week of the season to make a push for MVP.
Sure, the Lakers have been a disaster this NBA season, but LeBron James remains elite as ever. I can talk about his injured ankle, or the fact that Phoenix boasts one of the league’s best defenses, but it’s LeBron with a playoff berth on the line in April. Enough said.
Given that the NBA had a day off yesterday with the NCAA tournament coming to a close, this section of the article will be short at the time of writing, but ridiculously long come lock. For now, start your NBA lineups with Tre Jones, who will likely make another start with Dejounte Murray still out for the Spurs. In eight starts this season, Jones has a mere 16.3% usage rate but has been efficient as anyone, posting a 13.3/5/7.3 scoring line on 50.6% shooting. Averaging over 32.8 MPG in those contests, Jones’ FPPM of exactly 1.00 in starts shows he can produce when called upon.
Portland @ OKC is one of those games that just means nothing in terms of the standings, but can have a big impact on tonight’s NBA slate. If you have played any slate in the last two weeks, you’ll know that both of these teams are on 8-man rotations, whereby it’s the same contributors on a nightly basis on both sides of the ball. Theo Maledon, Aleksej Pokusevski, and the OKC guards stand out in the mid range, while Drew Eubanks, Brandon Williams, and Keon Johnson are targets for the Trail Blazers.
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