What’s up everyone. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings NBA picks for March 14th, 2018. Tonight, we have another small slate of only four games. Be sure to follow all of the injury news tonight, all the way up until the 7:00PM EST lock, 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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SF/PF: Kevin Durant: (11,400) In these last three games with PG Steph Curry out with the ankle injury (I am counting the two minutes he logged vs The Spurs as a full missed game), Durant has been tremendous, averaging 65.6 DK PPG. As expected, his rates have been through the roof, with a 38.9% usage rate, a 26.4% assist percentage, and a 13% rebound percentage, leading him to score an elite 1.7 DK PPM. Curry will be out again tonight, along with PF Draymond Green (back) and SG Klay Thompson. (thumb) Durant will once again put the team on his back in this excellent spot vs The Lakers, who are a high current opponent +/- of 4.39 points. This is going to be the fourth time KD has played The Lakers this season and in the previous three, he scored 61.8 DK PPG. With the other three of this big four for Golden State off the court, KD is averaging 61 DK points per 36 minutes.
Both of these teams rank in the top five in pace this season and this game should be filled with fantasy goodness, with it’s O/U game total of 226 points, which is the highest total of this slate, by a large 17 points. This game will be at home in The Oracle, where The Warriors are obviously a dominant team, but this game should stay close, with The Lakers playing very well right now, as winners of eight of their last ten, compared to The Warriors who have dropped their last two without Curry. (-7.5 GSW) Durant should absolutely feast in this spot tonight and I am expecting another 60+ DK point outing, with massive upside from the reigning Finals MVP.
PG/SG: Terry Rozier: (7,100) DraftKings was smart and adjusted Rozier’s price to life without Kyrie Iriving (knee) and Marcus Smart (thumb), but he is still too cheap if you ask me. In the three other games this season that Kyrie and Smart have both missed, Rozier was a beast as The Celtics’ starting PG, averaging 41.6 DK PPG and 35 MPG, including one triple double. In these games, he saw a 25.4% usage rate, which is a 5.2% increase and a 22.1% assist percentage, which is also a notable 5.3% jump from his usual rates, helping him to score a team high 1.19 DK PPM. His rates should be even higher than this when you factor in that The Celtics will also be without, SF Jaylen Brown (head), backup center Daniel Theis (knee), and now starting center Al Horford. (illness) With this Celtics team so beat up, Rozier should have to log 35-40 minutes in this nice matchup vs The Wizards who are the third worst rated defense over their last three games and are playing their second game in two nights. (2.13 opponent +/-)
With all of these players off the court, Rozier’s usage rises 6.2% and he is scoring 36.8 DK points per 36 minutes. At this new higher price, Rozier needs to score 35.5 DK points to meet value. This might seem out of reach for a player who averages 22.6 DK PPG this season, but I honestly think Rozier will approach 40 DK points tonight with the rates and minutes he will see, especially with this game being at home in Boston, where Rozier is averaging 3.7 more DK PPG this year. In my opinion, Rozier is one of the most underrated talents in The NBA right now. He is a sixth man of the year candidate and he is going to be huge for this Celtics’ team as they deal with multiple key injuries down the stretch. He is an elite rebounder for his size and a double double or possibly triple double isn’t out of the question. “Scary Terry” is going to be on the loose tonight and I think everyone should get on him before the whole DFS world starts riding him in these next couple games. (9-12% projected ownership via Fantasy Labs)
C: Tyler Zeller: (3,200) Zeller has become The Bucks’ main backup center and he has been solid with the role, averaging 20.4 DK PPG in these last three. He has played 18.84 MPG in these three and he is averaging 0.9 DK PPM this season. The Bucks have won all three of these games with Zeller having an expanded role and he should continue to see roughly 20 minutes again tonight in a great spot vs The Magic.
They are the fourth worst rated defense in The NBA this season and they have always been a very weak team inside. (2.92 opponent +/-) We can’t expect a huge score from him, but he should reach five times value with a ceiling around 25 DK points, which is great for a player at a close to bare minimum salary. He is a fine punt play in all formats, that will help you get in Durant. UPDATE: I still like Zeller and believe he is still viable for tonight, but with values like Aaron Baynes, Jordan Bell, Nick Young, Greg Monroe, and Andre Iguodola opening up, I think Zeller becomes less of a necessary play, just because he lacks upside as a reserve compared to these other values.
PG: De’Aaron Fox: (5,300) After missing one game with a back injury, Fox has been great in these last two starts, averaging 30.75 DK PPG, while playing 32 MPG. He hasn’t been shooting the ball well (42%), but he has been a much better playmaker, averaging 9.5 APG, leading this Kings’ team with a high 38.8% assist percentage. His matchup tonight is tough vs The Heat (0.5 opponent +/-), but they will be without their best defensive player center Hassan Whiteside (hip) and assuming he plays 30+ minutes again, which he should, Fox still has a very strong chance of reaching five times value.
Right now, he is one of the best values on DraftKings based on his Vegas props, with a DK implied score of 27.42 points, which is right over value for him at this salary. He was priced over $6,000 not too long ago and Fox is a value that needs to be considered for this small slate, even if the matchup isn’t ideal.
Also Consider: Marcus Morris/Jayson Tatum (both should see big usage increase and higher minutes tonight. The Celtics are going to have to play very small, which is good news for both of these players, as they will both see time at PF, naturally helping their rebounding. The prices have adjusted correctly, but they are both nice values tonight. Lastly, always remember Marcus is playing against his brother Markieff who is on The Wizards), Greg Monroe (Aaron Baynes will likely still start with Horford out, but he won’t play high minutes and Monroe should have to log at least 25 minutes with Theis now out of the picture. If the minutes are there Monroe should exceed value with him scoring 1.14 DK PPM this season. He should be the center who closes this game for The Celtics and a double double is definitely possible vs this Wizards team that is rating as a 3.56 opponent +/-), Aaron Baynes (will likely start at center and is averaging 23.3 DK PPG in the six other games that Horford has missed. He is a nice value play, but Monroe has the higher ceiling. I dont mind using both together considering the size of this slate on Wednesday night and how good of a matchup this is for Boston bigs), Shane Larkin (he should have to play close to 30 minutes tonight and should do a good amount of ball handling with Rozier. I could easily see 20+ DK points from him tonight and there is no way he will be highly owned), Jordan Bell (if active and starting for Green. He is only $3,800 and he scores 1.19 DK PMM with Green, Thompson, and Curry off the floor this season. This is a great price for him and he would be in play in all formats if healthy enough to play), Andre Iguodola (He is listed as probable and should do a ton of ball handling with Curry, Green, and Thompson out. He sees a 5.5% usage increase in this situation), Isaiah Thomas (this high paced game is perfect for IT and he should top 30 DK points again off the bench with SF Brandon Ingram still out. He has a current Vegas prop score of 30 points), Markieff Morris (over 30 DK points in three of his last four games and this should be a much easier matchup with Horford, Smart, and Brown all out. Also, as I just said above, Markieff will be going against his brother Marcus and I am sure both will want to outdo the other. He has a current score of 26.42 DK points based on his Vegas props), Nick Young (very cheap and should start and play high minutes in this solid matchup with The Lakers, but the floor is very low for him), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (33.25 DK PPG in his last three and only costs $6,000. The minutes will stay very high with Ingram remaining out and he also will benefit from the pace in this contest), Julius Randle (playing like a man on a mission right now, averaging 57.12 DK PPG in these last two. Randle has a DK implied score of 41 points via his current Vegas props. This matchup is also dramatically better for Randle with Green out. Finally he would see a bump if Kyle Kuzma was out), Brook Lopez (better if Kuzma is out. Would have to play 30+, but I do worry about The Lakers staying small for most of this game, with Randle at the five), Kyle Kuzma (if active. He is averaging 46.8 DK PPG vs The Warriors this season and is coming off a 50.75 DK point game vs The Nuggets last night), and Kelly Olynyk/James Johnson. (both will see bigger roles with Whiteside out again and I feel like they are two options that will get overlooked even with this being a small slate. Olynyk will play more and has the better upside of the two)