After a small four-game slate last night, we get a massive 12 game slate tonight and there is a ton of injuries, with surely more coming through the day. There is an awful lot to get to tonight so let’s talk about the spots we already like in the NBA DFS Today: Gems with Ghost & Adam 3/23 to find green screens!
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.
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Nets – Even on a larger slate, there are games that stand out among the pack and this is one of them. The Nets will be somewhat full health since Kyrie Irving is active and we’ve seen the pattern of him going off on the road while Kevin Durant takes a backseat. That doesn’t mean it’s set in stone but Durant is more than willing to morph into a secondary option on the team so if you’re spending up, Irving is the preferred player with his 32% usage rate and 1.65 FPPM over the past month. It has to be pointed out that his true shooting rate is 73.9% in that span so it will have to come down but these two teams are in the top 12 in pace. On the lower end of the pricing grid, we’ll need clarity on Goran Dragic and Seth Curry. Both are questionable and if one sits out, the other becomes a little more appealing. Bruce Brown is really getting a bit too pricey on DK but the sneakiest of the Nets players could be Andre Drummond. If Memphis runs their bigger lineups with Steven Adams and Jaren Jackson Jr., Drummond will have to play near 28 minutes and his ceiling is much higher than the salary.
Grizzlies – Even on a large slate, I’m going to be hard-pressed to imagine Tyus Jones not being one of the chalkiest players of the night. Ja Morant has already been ruled out for tonight and in that scenario, Jones has had a 17.7% usage and 0.97 FPPM. He’s been lights out when Morant has missed this season anytime he’s under $5,000 and that’s the case tonight. It looks like Dillon Books is at a great salary but his range of outcomes is very wide until his minute restriction is no longer an issue. The Grizzlies haven’t overtly said what his limit is but he has yet to exceed 26 minutes in his four games back. Memphis may not say when the minutes limit is up, but keep that in mind when considering playing him. I’m not going to be looking toward Jackson Jr. even though he’s averaged 1.27 FPPM without Morant because I do not trust him to stay out of foul trouble against Kyrie and KD.
Kings/Pacers – With so many injuries, we’re tweaking the format slightly. This game is going to be very appealing with a massive 236 total (Brooklyn is at 235) but we don’t know exactly who we need to target. For the Kings, the most popular pick is going to be Davion Mitchell, and justifiably so. Domantas Sabonis has been ruled out and it looks unlikely that De’Aaron Fox will play. Without them on the floor, Mitchell has a 30.6% usage rate over the past month with a 0.72 FPPM but his true shooting rate is only 47.4%. The ceiling is way higher than his salary and he proved that with 40+ DK points last game. Damian Jones, Trey Lyles, and Donte DiVincenzo all enter the fray as well, provided Fox is out. On the Indiana side of the equation, Tyrese Haliburton is questionable and his play has slipped a bit so there’s a good chance he would sit seemingly. If that’s the case, Malcolm Brogdon is going to be hard to not want to play under $8,000. It’s only a 71-minute sample size but the 1.51 FPPM when Haliburton has been off the floor in the past few weeks is impressive. Goga Bitadze is finally not questionable for a slate and he’s a dynamite option that could threaten for a double-double in limited minutes.
Knicks/Hornets – Playing against the Hornets has been a fantasy target all season but the Knicks are still playing on Tuesday night as of this writing. They were missing Julius Randle last night and were chalky beyond belief. The salaries have hardly moved so they would stand to be popular again if Randle is still out. Charlotte looks almost totally healthy tonight but if you play a lot of Knicks, don’t forget to potentially grab a Hornet coming back.
Warriors/Heat – Golden State played last night so the status of Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins, and Draymond Green would be in question. The secondary players like Jonathan Kuminga could be at the forefront for this squad. The Heat have question marks all over the board including Tyler Herro, Victor Oladipo, and Jimmy Butler (shocker). If a bunch of players sit out, this has the potential to be the most “popular” game on the slate.
Thunder – Shai Gilgeous-Alexander playing or not is a big deal for the Thunder and if he does, there is a ceiling to be had. He’s under $10,000 and has 1.46 FPPM across the past month with a 33.4% usage rate. The Magic played last night and are in the bottom 10 in defensive rating on the season.
Mavericks – On a lot of slates, the combo of Jalen Brunson and Spencer Dinwiddie would be leading the slate because Luka Doncic is out tonight and they face the Houston Rockets. Doncic missed a game on the fifth of the month and both players cleared 38 DK points. If choosing just one, I do prefer Dinwiddie. In the past month with Doncic off the floor, Dinwiddie has the lead in usage rate at 35.3% to 27.1% and the FPPM lead at 1.41 to 1.09. There is room for both to succeed against Houston as the game only has an 8.5 point spread and a 226 point total.
Trail Blazers – The Blazers are missing Anfernee Simons and Josh Hart tonight, so they’ll be down to Trenton Watford, Brandon Williams, Drew Eubanks, Justise Winslow, CJ Elleby, and Kris Dunn as the main rotation. They’re not super cheap anymore but the Spurs are top-five in pace and I really like Eubanks as San Antonio gets crushed in the paint, bottom 10 in rebounds and points allowed.
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