If Jimmy Butler sits out again tonight, it’s going to be plug and play with Derrick Rose ($6,200). Rose looked like the MVP-version of himself on Wednesday night in Butler’s absence. Rose tallied an excellent 21-9-6 line the Bulls which turned into 42.5 DraftKings points for his owners. Rose has been solid for the Bulls, averaging 31.9 DraftKings points over his last nine games (that he’s finished) and his usage will go through the roof if Butler’s shots are available. Denver ranks 24th against point guards this season. The pricing on PGs is pretty fair tonight, so Rose appears to be one of the few guys who has 6x upside.
He’s going to be chalk, but the price on Victor Oladipo ($6,900) is still appealing. Coming off two monster games of 41.75 and 57.25, Oladipo appears to have solidified his spot in the Magic rotation and is earning big minutes! He only needs 34.5 DK points to reach 5x value tonight, which is a feat he’s accomplished in 16 of the 23 (69%) of the games he’s played at least 30 minutes. He gets a favorable matchup against the Clippers who he scored 44.8 DraftKings points against in their only meeting this season.
If you’re a GPP player, Avery Bradley ($5,500) should be well known to you. He’s an extremely volatile player but has tremendous upside for a mid-tier priced player. In the last 12 games, he’s scored 34+ on five occasions, yet failed to score 25 points in six others. He’s feast or famine but he always has plenty of opportunity. He averaged 15 FGA per game in that twelve game stretch. He’s mostly reliant on real points to score, but he did score 34.25 DK points against the Cavs in their only meeting this season which would be 6.2x value tonight.
Speaking of GPP plays, Gordon Hayward ($7,400) is the type of guy who can win you a GPP tonight. He’s incredibly risky, as noted in his last four games alone: 42.75, 20.75, 55, 25.5. That’s very scary to roster a guy this expensive with as much volatility as he has. On the plus side, he’s had more great games than bad games recently, scoring 40+ DraftKings points in five of eight. He’s averaged 16.6 FGA per game in that stretch while knocking down 46% of his shots. This is exactly the matchup you want for Hayward as Milwaukee has been brutal defending wings this season. Hayward also averaged three more DraftKings points at home this season than on the road.
I also don’t mind Nic Batum ($6,300) out of the SF position. Batum has been battling injuries for the Hornets and has missed eight of their last seventeen games. He started on Wednesday night and logged 31 minutes against the Cavaliers. That was his ninth fewest minutes this season. Despite the lack of minutes, he posted a very “Batum-esque” line with ten points, five rebounds and five assists. It looks like Batum came out of the game no worse for the wear, so I expect his minutes to get back to usual 35+ a night. With all the missed games, Batum’s salary has dropped $1,200 in his last ten games and this is a decent matchup with the Heat tonight who are also banged up. Batum loves the home cooking, averaging 8.8 DK PPG more at home this season. There’s plenty of upside in this guy who can contribute in all five categories.
Boogie please! DeMarcus Cousins ($11,300) is beyond good right now. If you follow this website at all, you know how much I love this guy. He has scored at least 57 DraftKings points in ten of fifteen. He’s scored 60+ in seven of those games! The matchup is sublime with Brooklyn who is brutal in the paint. Robin Lopez…ROBIN LOPEZ just dropped a 17-13 line on his defensively challenged brother, Brook. Imagine what Cousins can do! Actually, I don’t have to imagine, Boogie shredded Brooklyn for 40-13 (61 DK points) in their only meeting this season. This is not the time to overthink it, find a way to roster Boogie.
Nerlens Noel ($6,600) is very interesting. The casual fan won’t realize how great he has been or was on Wednesday night. Nerlens dropped a 31.25 DraftKings point night, which seems normal, but if you look deeper it was in only 22 minutes. Noel came out of the gate like a mad man, before foul trouble and an Atlanta blowout limited him to only 22 minutes. In the 18 games with Ish Smith as a Sixer, Nerlens is averaging 1.15 DraftKings points per minute, which is similar to Carmelo Anthony and Kyle Lowry’s season averages.
You have to keep an eye on the Miami Heat game notes and see if there is going to be any minutes restrictions on Hassan Whiteside ($7,400). After missing two weeks with an oblique injury, Whiteside suited up against Dallas on Wednesday night. He dropped a stellar 10-9-5 (blks) line for 34 DraftKings points….in only 17 minutes. Five fouls didn’t help his cause so it’s difficult to say how much we would have played without the fouls. He’s an elite shot blocker who can clearly stuff the stat sheet in a hurry. I’d be willing to fire him up in GPPs if we knew he was going to play 25+ minutes, I’m just not sure we will get any guarantee of that.
That’s all folks! Be sure to follow me on Twitter for more player analysis as news and injuries break closer to tip-off! Commentary based on DraftKings strategy and scoring.