Welcome back everybody. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings NBA picks for March 19th, 2018. Tonight, we get back to a full slate with nine games to attack. 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.
If you want help with NBA research for FanDuel and DraftKings check out the best fantasy tools out there at FantasyLabs.com
SF/PF: LeBron James: (11,700) LeBron has put this Cavs’ team on his back in their last three games, averaging a ridiculous 73.2 DK PPG. They have been dealing with multiple injuries and tonight they will remain without center Tristan Thompson (ankle), center Larry Nance Jr. (hamstring), SG Rodney Hood (back), SF Cedi Osman (hip), and possibly SF Kyle Korver (foot) and PF Kevin Love (hand), who are both listed as questionable. Korver should play, but Love was targeting a return later this week and I really don’t see him suiting up tonight. Plus, Cavs’ Head Coach Ty Lue announced today that he will be taking a leave from the team for personal reasons. It’s really an odd situation, but there’s no doubt in this first game without their Head Coach, that everything will still be on LeBron.
He should be able to dictate his own playing time and with this game vs The Bucks having a tight spread of 2.5 points, LeBron should play over 40 minutes for the third consecutive game. Plus, this game has the highest O/U game total of Monday night at 224 points and LeBron will be on his home floor, where he is averaging 3.2 more DK PPG. Even though he is the most expensive player on the board, James is the best rated value based on his Vegas props, with an implied score of 59.78 fantasy points. There is enough value available tonight, that it’s hard not to build around The King.
SG/SF: Jeremy Lamb: (4,200) Lamb is a plug and play value with starting SF Nicholas Batum out with an Achilles injury. He has already been announced the starter at SF and in the other 14 games Batum has sat this season, Lamb averaged 28.7 DK PPG and a healthy 30.9 MPG. He scores 1.01 DK PPM when Batum is off the court this year and with a starting role he should play 30-35 minutes tonight, in a decent spot vs The Sixers. (2.31 opponent +/-)
He should easily get five times value and score 25+ DK points in this situation. Simply put, Lamb is the best point per dollar play of this slate, that should be in all your lineups on Monday night.
PG/SG: Cameron Payne: (4,700) With starting PG Kris Dunn out Saturday night with a toe injury, Payne drew the start and was great helping this Bulls team almost pick a win over The Cavs, putting up a double double of 13 points and 10 assists, while also chipping in with two boards. (32 DK points) Dunn didn’t travel with the team and he has already been confirmed out for tonight’s game vs The Knicks. Payne logged 32 minutes on Saturday and he should play 30+ again as The Bulls starting PG. The Bulls’ coaching staff wants their younger players to develop and he should see heavy playing time regardless of the score of this game.
This matchup vs The Knicks doesn’t appear like a strong one for PGs (1.34 opponent +/-), but they are also a team that is in full on tank mode right now and this game should naturally be high scoring. (217 O/U game total) He posted a team high 40% assist percentage and scored 0.88 DK PPM as the starting PG and tonight I am expecting him to have no issues exceeding value and approaching 30 DK points. Also, he does have some solid upside if he can manage another double double, which certainly isn’t out of the question.
PG: Quinn Cook: (4,500) Cook has had an underwhelming rookie season, but he has been making up for it in a big way in these last two games, with PG Steph Curry (ankle), SG Klay Thompson (hand), and SF Kevin Durant (ribs) all out. He has started at PG in both games and is averaging a whopping 43.5 DK PPG and 40.7 MPG. All his rates have risen, but this recommendation is more off the huge minutes he is playing. Along with the big three I listed above, The Warriors will be without SF Omir Cassipi. (ankle) SF Patrick McCaw may return after missing two months due to a wirst injury, but it’s hard to expect him to play much at all and I am expecting roughly 40 minutes again for Cook.
He is averaging 1.1 DK PPM in these last two games and even though the matchup is tough vs The Spurs, they have slightly slipped vs PGs recently (2.71 opponent +/-) and Cook should score 25+ DK points in this spot. It’s hard to expect another 40 DK outing from the rookie, but he is still extremely mispriced and is a viable play in all formats for this eight game slate.
Also Consider: Jeff Green (has been starting at center and if Love is out again, as I am expecting, he is a very strong value play once again. He is averaging 30.4 DK PPG in these past three and he logged 42.46 minutes in their last game. Finally, this matchup vs The Bucks is a great one for centers, with them allowing the 4th most DK points to the position this season), Kyle Korver (would likely rejoin the starting five if he is active. Has averaged 26.3 DK PPG in his last three and is just too cheap at $4,300), Jordan Clarkson (GPP viable if Korver is out), Kevin Love (as I said I dont expect him to play, but if he somehow did and wasnt limited, he would have to be considered at $6,200 with this team already so thin), Noah Vonleh (if he is active. Has scored 20+ in his last three games), Cristiano Felcio (if Vonleh was out. He scored 27.5 DK points in 30 minutes Saturday with Vonleh not playing. This matchup is great vs The Knicks who are a 3.68 opponent +/-), Bobby Portis (price is up, but he would be in play if Vonleh sat. played 35 minutes with him out Saturday and scored 37.75 DK points), Nick Young (34.75 DK points and 41.2 minutes last game. If McCaw plays that would take a few minutes from Young, but he should still return value with the high usage he will see), Brook Lopez (31.2 DK PPG in his last six and has played 30+ in five of those games. His matchup is great vs The Pacers who are a high 4.69 opponent +/-), Tyreke Evans (back and playing full minutes. Is averaging 44.75 DK PPG in his first two back and he is playing way up in pace vs The Nets. Also, center Marc Gasol is questionable with an illness and if he was out, Evans’ high rates would grow even more. He scored 45 DK points in the lone game he was active for with Gasol and Mike Conley both out), JaMychal Green/Jarell Martin (both in play, but would see huge boosts if Gasol was out. This matchup is awesome vs The Nets who are horrid at defending big men and in the four games Gasol has missed this season, Green is averaging 35 DK PPG and Martin is averaging 24.9 DK PPG), and Deyonta Davis. (would likely start if Gasol was out, with Martin already starting at the three with Gasol healthy. He scores 0.93 DK PPM this season would have to play around 30 minutes in this dream matchup vs The Nets who are the third worst rated defense in the league over their last three games)