What’s going on everybody. Alex here, and I am back with my DraftKings NBA Playoff Picks for April 24th, 2017. Tonight’s slate is the usual playoff slate with three games to target. Be sure to still follow all the injury news 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: Stephen Curry: (9,600) With SF Kevin Durant sidelined for the second straight game (calf), Curry led The Warriors to another win in this first round series, scoring 34 points to go with eight assists, four rebounds, two steals, and a block in 39 minutes on Saturday night. (59 DK points). As of right now Durant is listed as questionable, and even though he probably thinks he is ready to play after practicing Friday, the smart move would be to hold him out for another game, with The Warriors beating this Blazers team up without him, leading the series 3-0. It isn’t a huge difference, but in these two playoff games without Durant, Curry has led this Warriors team with a 31.1% usage rate.
This isn’t the first time this year Durant has dealt with an injury and in the 21 total games he has missed this season, Curry is averaging 48.3 DK points, which is a healthy increase from his 43.8 average for the whole year. Assuming KD sits this one out, Curry should score 50+ DK points with upside against Damian Lillard and this Blazers’ defense that has allowed the 8th most DK points to PGs this season. Even if Durant ends up playing, Curry still has a great chance of returning at least five times value in this close out game. We most likely won’t know Durant’s status before roster lock with this being the last game to tip off, but I wouldn’t let this hold you back from playing Curry because he is a great spend tonight no matter if Durant plays or not.
SF: Norman Powell: (3,800) After getting embarrassed in game three, Raptors Head Coach Dwane Casey decided to shake up his starting five, moving center Jonas Valancuinas to the bench and starting Powell at SF for game four. The move worked out perfectly with The Raptors picking up a win and evening the series at two games a piece, with Powell contributing 12 points, four rebounds, four assists, and a block in the win. (26.5 DK points) Sometimes in the regular season, when Powell would start, he wouldn’t play heavy minutes, but in game four, he logged a high 34 minutes with The Raptors using smaller lineups for most of the game.
This was a big road win for The Raptors and you have to believe that Coach Casey will keep the same starting lineup for tonight’s game five back in Toronto. If he starts and plays 30+ minutes, Powell has a terrific chance of producing 20+ DK points again, in this nice matchup vs The Bucks, who have struggled all season defending SFs, allowing the fourth most DK points to the position. His price has jumped $1,400 since Saturday, as it should have, but he is still very underpriced at only $3,800. There is no doubt he will be one of the highest owned players of the night, but Powell is just too good of a value to pass up, and I will be using him in all formats with confidence on Monday night.
SG/SF: Evan Turner: (5,500) Turner was very productive on Saturday, scoring 37.5 DK points in a team high 40 minutes. He has been very effective since becoming a starter in game one, and if you disregard the massive 29 point blowout loss in game two that limited all of the starters minutes, Turner is now averaging 36 DK points and 38 minutes as The Blazers starting SF. His rates haven’t shifted much, this is purely just a result of the heavy playing time he has been seeing when these games have stayed competitive. It’s win or go home for Turner and The Blazers tonight, and you have to think they will put up a fight and keep this game close or somehow salvage a win in front of their home crowd.
Vegas seems to agree with this, by only favoring The Warriors by seven points, compared to the double digit spreads we saw in games one and two. In this must win situation, Turner and all The Blazers starters should play high minutes, especially with starting center Jusuf Nurkic already ruled out (neck), after playing a limited role in game three. If Turner continues with this role and plays around 35 minutes, he should produce 30-35 DK points in game four.
PF: David West: (2,700) West’s price has yet to increase even though he has returned over six times value in back to back games. He had a quiet game one, only scoring 6.25 DK points, but since then he has been very solid, averaging 17 DK points off the bench. His role will never be large, but his minutes have been rather steady, with him logging 13 or more minutes in all three of these playoff wins. The veteran, even at his age, is still an effective fantasy player, scoring 1.1 DK points per minute so far this year.
There is no reason why his role won’t continue tonight, and in 13-15 minutes, we can expect close to 15 DK points out of West, in this gorgeous matchup vs The Blazers, who have given up the 2nd most DK points to PFs this season, with a current opponent +/- of 2.29 points. He isn’t an exciting play by any means, but at only $2,700, I think West is the best full punt of tonight’s slate.
Also Consider: Andre Iguodala (bump if Durant remains out), Shaun Livingtston (if he is active), Matt Barnes (if he is active and Durant is out), Ian Clark, Michael Beasley, Greg Monroe, Al Farouq-Aminu, JaVale McGee, Patrick McCaw (only if starting for Durant), and Marcin Gortat.