I hope everyone had a good weekend! It was a good weekend for me fantasy wise. If you haven’t been reading all year, my goal for the season has been to win the Draftkings Mid Range Jumper Single Entry contest. It is a $40 entry and usually has between 600-1100 entries depending on the day and slate. Twice before this year I finished as high as fourth.
Friday night (which is the same day I finished top five both times), I climbed all the way to first place. The only way anyone was going to be able to catch me was if Damian Lilard went off over the last 16 minutes of his game. Well, it took him just 3:45 of game time to close out the third quarter to overtake me. It was literally one of the most amazing things I’ve seen. He scored 21 fantasy points in that short span to end with 50 real points at the end of the third.
When the dust settled, I ended up in 3rd place, just short again. I also finished 19th out of 5.2K in the $55 tourney, winning a grand total of $1,800. I followed that up with a 10th place in the Mid Range on Sunday. While it was nice to score two top 10’s, I’m still focusing on winning that tourney, so I’ll continue to put in the work.
As always, I try to peel back the curtain and give you my full thoughts and plays in this article. Barring late news, etc, you will always find me playing the guys I recommend here. And with all of the late news this time of year, I’m happy to answer questions on twitter as lock approaches and new plays become available. Enough talking, let’s get to the slate.
Before I jump into the article, I want to say that I think you can absolutely create a full stack from this game. I literally like five or six Suns players and would stick with the Big 3 from GS (Draymond Green is doubtful).If it stays close, it will give you a chance to win a tournament. My main worry is that it will be a blowout and we’ll get two and a half quarters from the Warriors. I just don’t see how Phoenix can keep it close in Golden State. If your a multi-entry player, you’ll want to create some stacks.
If you’re not stacking that game, here are my five core plays.
PG/SG: Zach Lavine – Chicago Bulls
Lavine was in my lineup Friday night and he was exceptional. Before rostering him, I was a little worried about Jimmy Butler defense, but watching that game down the stretch, Lavine had absolutely no problems getting around Butler and getting to the basket on multiple occasions before hitting the game winning three pointer. Now he faces the Orlando Magic, who we love to target against. Lavine should see 30-35 minutes and has averaged nearly 1.2 Draftkings points per minutes on the season. He had an absurd 43% usage rate on Friday night. Granted, I don’t think we’ll see that again, especially since that was his revenge game, I do think that he will be a usage hog until Kris Dunn comes back. Speaking of that, there is a chance Dunn will return for this game. If he does, I might end up passing on Lavine, unless we hear Dunn will be on a strict minutes limit. I have a feeling Dunn will sit out one more game though, but we will see.
PG/SG: Spencer Dinwiddie – Brooklyn Nets
Dinwiddie has been on a tear over his last six games, scoring no fewer than 30 DK points. In fact, he’s been over 35 in five of those games. Somehow his price is $300 cheaper than it was five games ago. Huh? I think this is a plug an play at this price against the defensively challenged Clippers. I don’t think Austin Rivers/Lou Williams defense should scare anyone. Dinwiddie is a very safe play with lots of upside.
SF/PF: Michael Beasley – New York Knicks
Until his price gets well into the $7k range, I think you just keep playing Beasley. In these last two games since Kristaps Porzingis has been out, Beasley has scored just over 38 DK points in each. He is a usage monster and if he’s getting 30 minutes every night, he comes with a ton of safety and 50+ point upside. To win the big tournaments, you have to find $6-7k players who can go for 50 DK points. Beasley can definitely do just that, and he’s not going to burn you very often.
PF/C: Pau Gasol – San Antonio Spurs
It’s not often that you will find me recommend a center against the Jazz, but Gasol is only $4,800. That’s just absurd, especially given the fact that Lamarcus Aldridge has already been ruled out. His price has dropped to this level after coming off the bench each of the past three games. I think it is likely we see him re-enter the starting lineup in this one and play 25-30 minutes. He should be able to easily get 6x value with that many minutes.
C: Joel Embiid – Philadelphia 76ers
Embiid has a juicy matchup against the Knicks. While Enes Kanter is a scoring and rebounding machine, his defense is very, very bad. Embiid should have his way in this one, similar to their last matchup. In 34 minutes against the Knicks earlier this season, he topped 55 DK points. I think his floor in this game is around 5X, but his upside is much higher. He’s averaged 5X his current salary over his last five games. He’s the guy worth spending up for on this slate in my opinion. For what it’s worth, Kanter topped 60 DK points in that prior matchup, although I don’t expect him to do that again.
The Sixth Man
I wanted to throw in one more play I have my eye on for value: Khem Birch. Birch has slowly gained more trust with the coaching staff and has pushed Bismack Biyombo out of some minutes lately. At just $3,700, I think he could be looked to for some value if we don’t get any news throughout the day. He should come off the bench and play at least 20 minutes, with a reasonable outcome around 20 DK points. He needs just 22 fantasy points to reach 6X value.
As I mentioned above, I encourage you to reach out to me on twitter (see handle below) as we get closer to tip-off. Even though the trade deadline is over, this is still the time of year when we get a lot of weird news, etc. I’m happy to give you my final thoughts as we count down to lock. Best of luck!
That’s it for today. Be sure to follow me on Twitter at @mrclutchdfs so you can stay up to date on any changes to my plays based on late information.
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