What’s going on everybody. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings NBA picks for October 20th, 2017. Tonight we get a full slate with 10 games to attack. Be sure to follow all of the injury news tonight, all the way up until the 7:00 PM 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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PG: D’Angelo Russell: (7,300) With guard Jeremy Lin gone for the season (knee), Russell is going to have to a huge role going forward in this Nets offense. Even with Lin logging 25 minutes in the season opener, Russell played excellent in his first game as a Net, scoring 30 points on 22 shots, along with five assists, three rebounds, and a steal across 30 minutes vs The Pacers. (44.25 DK points) The 22 shots were very intriguing, as he led this team with a 31% usage rate, which is almost a 3% bump from his average rate with The Lakers last season. There is no official word of who will start alongside Russell in Lin’s place, but either way, it isn’t going to be a player who commanded usage like Lin (26.7% in game 1), leaving most of the ball handling and passing responsibility’s on Russell.
His usage rate should remain around 30% with his assist percentage also seeing a sizable increase. The matchup also is great, going against a Magic defense that is rated at a 4.89 opponent +/- vs PGs, which is currently the highest mark of the slate. Even with a smaller role in LA, Russell had great success against Magic PG Elfird Payton and this weak defense, averaging 36.25 DK points in his last two meetings vs The Magic. The one slight concern is how The Nets manage their players minutes. They usually try to keep everyone under 30 minutes, but in the opener after losing Lin, the coaching staff let Russell play a team high 30 minutes, which is right around where I am projecting him tonight, in this game that has a tight spread of 1.5 points in favor of The Nets and the highest O/U game total at 225 points. He should put up 35-40 DK points in this elite spot, especially with this game being played on his home floor, where Russell averaged three more DK points a game last season.
PG/SG: Terry Rozier: (4,200) The Celtics’ injuries just keep piling up and they will now will be without combo guard Marcus Smart tonight due to an ankle injury. Smart was playing a big role on this team and with him out, Rozier should see a nice bump in minutes, whether he enters the starting lineup or not. In the first two games of the season, with a healthy a Smart, Rozier was putting up nice numbers off the bench, averaging 31.25 DK points in 23.5 minutes a game. His usage was 19% in these two contests and it should see a small increase tonight, but the main thing that should jump is his minutes.
I think he will start, but even if he doesn’t, Rozier will be one the final players on the floor for The Celtics, and I am projecting him around 30 minutes tonight. At the moment, he is scoring 1.2 DK points per minute, and in starter like minutes, Rozier should easily produce five times value at his cheap $4,200 salary, that is clearly not priced for Smart being out. The matchup is average vs The Sixers (21st vs PGs), but no matter the defense he is facing, Rozier is an excellent value play that can’t be ignored on Friday night.
SF/PF: Larry Nance Jr.: (4,300) Nance drew the start at PF last night and was very effective, posting a double-double, of 14 points and 12 rebounds, while also chipping in with a block. (31 DK points) The eventual starting Laker PF, Julius Randle, is dealing with rib soreness, and he only logged 18 minutes, compared to Nance, who played 30 minutes in the loss to The Clippers on Thursday night. On the second night of a back to back, Randle should remain limited, and Nance should once again draw the start, in a very nice matchup vs The Suns (3.93 opponent +/-), who played at the second fastest pace in the league last season.
Playing up in pace is ideal for Nance and his athletic game. He is a very active player who not only plays well on the glass, but can chip in with a few blocks and steals every game. (check out this block on Deandre Jordan last night) Playing against this Suns’ team is a 2.1 possession increase in terms of pace for The Lakers and in the last 19 games Nance has seen a possession increase of at least 2.0, he is producing a 2.78 more DK points than his projected score. (via Fantasy Labs) At only $4,300, he is a strong value play, that is a very flexible option that can be played at SF or PF.
PF/C: Frank Kaminsky: (4,300) Kaminsky struggled in his first game of the year (12 DK points vs The Pistons), but he should see his minutes rise tonight with center Cody Zeller out. (knee) Frank The Tank drew the start on Wednesday, but only logged 23 minutes with Zeller healthy and also playing 23 minutes. Tonight with Zeller and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist both out (personal), this front court will be down to Kaminsky, Dwight Howard, and Johnny O’Bryant.
SF Marvin Williams will most likely slide over to PF at times in this game, but Kaminksy should start and have to log close to 30 minutes with this team thin up front. In the 848 minutes he played with MKG and Zeller out last season, Kaminksy saw a team high 1.7 usage increase, and scored 31.75 DK points per 36 minutes. He is a solid fantasy player at 0.88 DK points per minute and he should be able to meet fives time value going against Hawks PF Ersan Ilyasova and this Hawks defense that allowed 111 points to a very slow Mavs team on opening night.
Also Consider: Malcolm Brogdon, Trevor Booker, Caris LeVert, Thaddeus Young, Domantas Sabonis (starting for Myles Turner who is out with a concussion. Only $3,500), Marvin Williams, Evan Fournier, Tobias Harris, Zach Randolph (first game as a King, probably will be low owned), Jaylen Brown, Josh Jackson (32 minutes last game and is playing The Lakers), and Jae Crowder.