What’s going on everyone. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings NBA picks for March 13th, 2017. Tonight we get a full slate with eight games on tap. From now on I will be including an expensive player I like with my sleeper/value picks. Be sure to follow all the injury news up until the 7:00 PM EST lock tonight, to see if any new injury news comes up. As always if any of these picks help you win or if you need any advice, let me know on Twitter. Hunta512.
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PG: Ricky Rubio: (6,800) Even though Rubio has been on an absolute tear since The All Star Break, averaging 41.1 DK points over his last eight games, his price has yet to go over $7,000. A player who puts up this kind of numbers should be priced somewhere between $7,500-$8,000, but his price has only slowly increased to $6,800. During this stretch of games, all of his rates have increased, with his usage rate going up 4.3%, his assist rate 10.4%, and his rebound percentage 1.6%. All of this has led to him now scoring 1.11 DK points per minute compared to his normal 0.88 DK point per minute average this season.
Tonight he will look to keep up his improved play at home vs The Wizards. This isn’t a perfect matchup for him with this defense, ranking 12th vs PGs this season, but he will be playing up in pace with The Wizards playing at the 11th fastest pace this season, compared to The Wolves who are the 5th slowest team in the league. (2.7 possession increase) This game should stay very competitive with its 1.5 points spread, and Rubio should play 30-35 minutes and return five times value with 40 point upside. He has let me down many times this season, but with the way he is playing and at a very affordable price, he is one of my favorite targets of this eight game slate.
PG: Patty Mills: (4,400) There is no official word of who will start at PG for The Spurs, but with guards Tony Parker (back) and Dejonte Murray (groin) both already ruled out, Mills should handle most of PG duties tonight. With both of these players and SF Kawhi Leonard (head) and PF LaMarcus Aldridge (heart) also out on Saturday, Mills got the starting nod and played great, scoring 21 points, shooting 5/7 from beyond the arc, to go along with four assists, two rebounds, and a steal. (33.5 DK points) He only played 21 minutes total in this game, but he would have played more if this game had been close, with The Spurs beating The Warriors by 22 points.
His usage will take a hit if Leonard returns (questionable, head), but with Murray, Aldridge, and Parker all officially out, he should still be very involved in the offense tonight, in a very nice matchup vs The Hawks, who allow the 9th most DK points to PGs this year, with a current opponent +/- of 2.9 points. Starting or coming off the bench, he should play 25-30 minutes in hopefully a more competitive game environment (Spurs -6.5), and score around 25 DK points with upside, if he remains hot from downtown. It is hard to guess his ownership with no starting lineup out yet, but either way if he starts or not, he is a strong play tonight in all formats at $4,400.
C: Kosta Koufos: (3,900) Koufos has been playing well since his very odd 6.25 DK points performance vs The Nets two weeks ago, averaging 26.2 DK points a night in his last five games. His minutes have also been somewhat consistent, playing 27.1 minutes per game in these five games. This isn’t a huge boost in playing time, but his usage has been on the rise with him posting a 21% usage rate which is a 5.7% increase from his normal 15.3% average this season. Koufos is no Demarcus Cousins, but this is a great sign that they want him to be used more offensively when he is on the floor.
Tonight he gets a excellent matchup vs The Magic, who have struggled vs centers all season, allowing the 8th most DK points to position, with a high current opponent +/- of 4.22 points. I am not expecting a huge game from him, but with 20-25 minutes, he should be able to hit five times value in this matchup. As I mentioned above, he let us down in a similar situation a few weeks ago vs The Nets, but I am not going to let this cloud my judgement tonight, because at $3,900 he is a very viable punt if you need the salary cap relief for this eight game slate.
PG/SG: Jordan Clarkson: (5,500) Clarkson was fabulous last night scoring 30 points, eight assists, and six rebounds, a block, and a steal in 34 minutes vs The Sixers. (52.5 DK points) I hate to seem like I am chasing points here, but he has playing more minutes as of late, averaging 34.3 minutes in his last three games, with The Lakers giving all their minutes to their younger core of players. His usage didn’t change much in his prior two games, but last night with starting SG Nick Young put on the bench, not logging a single minute in last night’s loss, Clarkson saw his usage jump up to 27.3%, which is a 3.8% bump from his season average. Tonight he couldn’t be in a better matchup to follow up his career night, going against The Nuggets who allow the 2nd most DK points to SGs this season. (1.84 +/-)
After last night there is no reason to think Young will be back in the rotation tonight, and Clarkson should be very active and play 30-35 minutes again, in this fast paced high scoring game that has the highest O/U game total of Monday night at 230.5 points, which is the highest total of the night by a large margin of 16 points. The Nuggets, being favored by 13.5 points, presents a blow out risk, but if The Lakers are up or down, they should still give their younger players plenty of run. Don’t expect over 50 DK points again, but 25-35 DK points is a fair expectation out of him tonight vs this defense, assuming Young stays put on the bench.
Also Consider: Ivcia Zubac (better if he starts again), Norman Powell (if DeMarre Carroll is out), Jeremy Lamb (nice boost if Batum is out), Nemanja Bjeclica, Manu Ginobli,Marvin Williams, David Lee, Jamal Murray (if Jameer Nelson is out), Tim Hardaway Jr., Larry Nance Jr., Kyle Anderson (if Leonard is out), Willie Cauley-Stein, and Dewayne Dedmon.