I really like Damian Lillard ($8,900) as the pivot from the usual suspects. He’s scored at least 44 DraftKings points in each of his last six games (that he finished), which would lock him into 5x value again today. He is the entire offense for the Blazers and is routinely firing 20+ shots a game. This game is listed at 202.5 with a tiny 1.5 point edge to MIN. That would indicate a close game until the end. These are two dynamic offenses that have shown the ability to play fast for sustained stretches. This has the opportunity to turn into a shootout.
Plenty of value at the guard positions today. Let’s start with Michael Carter-Williams ($5,100). MCW was benched earlier this week and appeared to be in Jason Kidd’s doghouse. Well, he’s going to be forced into action today due to injuries. Here’s the current Bucks PG situation:
Essentially MCW and OJ Mayo are going to have to handle the ball for the entire game. Expect them both to play a ton of minutes. MCW is wildly inconsistent, but has sneaky triple-double upside. If there were ever a time for a big game from MCW, it would be today.
Alex Burks ($5,200) is filling a much needed offensive void for the Jazz right now. He’s scored 21, 19 and 21 in his last three games and has now taken at least 12 shot attempts in nine out of ten games. With the loss of Rudy Gobert, Burks is being asked to shoulder a larger load on offense and he’s taking advantage. Burks only needs 30 DraftKings points to reach full 6x value, a feat he has accomplished in two of his last three.
With Chris Paul already being ruled out and JJ Redick listed as doubtful for tonight, the Clippers tandem of Jamal Crawford ($4,900) and Austin Rivers ($3,900) should see significant run. While Rivers is cheaper, he offers little upside and has been rather underwhelming this season even when he has played extensive minutes. I would prefer to spend a little more on Crawford who is a streaky option, but at least he can get hot and fill it up in a hurry. Crawford is not afraid to shoo the ball, with 26 shot attempts in his last two games. And if he gets hot, well watch out! Remember a few weeks ago, Crawford stepped in and logged 41 minutes versus Detroit, scoring 37 real points and 58.5 DraftKings points. Massive ceiling with this guy.
The situation for Omri Casspi ($4,700) is appealing, but I am very concerned. On paper, it looks awesome. He’s a decent scorer, who looks like he will move into the starting lineup for the Kings and he’s playing in a great matchup with the highest O/U on the slate. However, it feels like a trap. Casspi basically already plays starters minutes. He closes on in 30 minutes almost every night. So maybe he plays an extra five minutes or so as a starter, but in a much worse situation. He’s going to be the third or fourth scoring option behind Demarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay and Rajon Rondo, instead of being the first option with the second unit. I will sprinkle exposure to Casspi, but have some concerns and feel like he’s going to be over-owned.
It’s worth noting that Lance Stephenson ($3,400) will be another beneficiary of Paul and Redick sitting this game out. Lance had the best game of the year against IND in his last time out, posted a 19-3-3 line. While I certainly don’t expect him to score at that rate too often, he’s hit 7x, 8x, 6x and 9x value in his last four games. If he sees close to 25 minutes tonight, he should be a solid option to hit value again.
I am back on Derrick Favors ($7,500) again tonight. I expected a much larger performance on Thursday with the absence of Rudy Gobert, but Favors was still able to post a 12-10 line on only seven shots. It was a weird game if you go back and watch the tape. Gordon Hayward got hot and Favors basically did nothing in the first half. I don’t see that scenario happening too often. This is still a plus situation and matchup for Favors.
Nikola Vucevic ($6,800) continues to be under-priced. He’s a double-double machine, who has scored no less than 34 DraftKings points in any of the last three. He has tremendous upside as he takes nearly 20 shots per game. He’s going to earn a boost from the Clippers inability to defend inside and a much faster pace than the Magic are used to. My projections love him today, and pin him with a 24.7% chance to hit 6x value.
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.