I capped the weekend with another solid team on Sunday, but a team with 293 fantasy points wasn’t good enough to place in the end.
Quinn Cook (38), Trey Burker (32), James Harden (56), Donovan Mitchell (39) and Clint Capela (35) were all strong plays. Paul George (25) doomed me, while two of my value plays couldn’t even top 20 fantasy points.
I was initially interested in Terry Rozier (57!) and was considering fading James Harden. That may have worked out if I’d dropped down to someone like C.J. McCollum, but shooting guard actually ended up being a bit dicey with both Bradley Beal and DeMar DeRozan barely notching 20 fantasy points.
It still wasn’t a bad night overall, but I didn’t finish in the green. It’s onward and upward for Monday, which produces a fun five-game NBA DFS slate with few elite options. That’s the way I like it, as I can create a balanced roster and hope the pricier guys don’t go crazy.
Here’s my favorite lineup for FanDuel GPPs tonight:
PG: Terry Rozier – Boston Celtics ($7.1k)
I like some value at point guard tonight, but I think paying up at one PG spot makes sense. Kemba Walker and Lonzo Ball are both $8.3k or more and might be a bit too expensive for me on this slate, but Rozier went nuts last night and gets the Phoenix Suns on Monday.
Rozier is always a fine play, but you get him at a discount in a pristine matchup. He might end up being popular, but I don’t see a good reason to get cute and fade him in this spot.
PG: Trey Burke – New York Knicks ($4.9k)
I rolled with Burke yesterday and he delivered with 32 fantasy points. There is risk with going back to the well tonight, as the Knicks aren’t good and teams don’t tend to fare all that well playing in Charlotte.
That’s worth noting, but Burke should remain the starter for now and does get a decent matchup tonight. The Hornets are inside the top-10 for pace in the league and Kemba Walker isn’t exactly an elite on-ball defender. You’re getting some really nice savings here and I think Burke has a great shot at 30-35 fantasy points again.
SG: Will Barton – Denver Nuggets ($7.1k)
I could save cash with Jaylen Brown ($6.1k) in a tasty matchup with the Suns, but I love Barton with Gary Harris still out. Barton can erupt in any setting and has done well (46+ fantasy points in two of his last three games) lately.
Barton is again in a fine spot against the 76ers, as he’ll be in a nice up tempo game that happens to feature the night’s best Total (224 at Bovada). That doesn’t guarantee Barton will crush in this spot, but he topped 38 fantasy points the first time he faced Philly and he’s a threat to do the same again tonight.
SG: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope – Los Angeles Lakers ($6.1k)
Jaylen Brown is the exact same price as KCP and has a way better matchup, so I’m guessing he could have similar or increased ownership tonight. I don’t know if that gets everyone off of KCP in a “true revenge” game in Detroit against his former Pistons squad, but I can’t fade KCP, regardless.
Caldwell-Pope has been a solid value for weeks now, and with Brandon Ingram still sidelined, I look at tonight being another fine opportunity for him to sound off.
SF: Nemanja Bjelica – Minnesota Timberwolves ($5.8k)
Small forward is really weak tonight, but it’s not so weak that I feel inclined to drop all the way down to spare land. I still like Bjelica, who continues to get a ton of run with Jimmy Butler sidelined.
Bjelica doesn’t have a crazy ceiling, but he’ll be at home against a bad Grizzlies team. There is serious blowout risk here, but Minny tends to play their starters deep into games, regardless of outcomes.
SF: Josh Jackson – Phoenix Suns ($7.2k)
The main SF worth spending on tonight is Jackson, provided both Devin Booker and T.J. Warren remain out. Jackson is going to take a hit if either of those guys are back from injury, but if they remain sidelined he’s in for a huge role and loads of upside.
You’re paying for the value he brings to the table at this price, but if he smashes at home against the Boston Celtics, you’re not going to want to miss out on it.
PF: Kyle Kuzma – Los Angeles Lakers ($6.6k)
Ben Simmons leads the way at PF tonight, but I’m not so sure I want to pay almost $10k to roster him. I’ll drop down to Kuz at one spot no matter what, as he continues to catch fire as Brandon Ingram’s replacement in L.A.’s starting give.
Kuzma has been wrecking for a while now, yet his price tag refuses to budge too much. Throw in a trip back home to Michigan and I think you could be getting Kuz at a severe discount on a night he could end up putting on a show.
PF: Blake Griffin – Detroit Pistons ($8.8k)
If I am interested in paying almost $10k for Simmons, why not just drop down and get a similar option in Blake for $1k less? Griffin can be touch and go due to playing with the Pistons, but he’s also a nightly triple-double threat these days and looks like a very fun play in a high octane matchup tonight.
Griffin wasn’t great in his last outing, but has otherwise been fantastic with 49+ fantasy points in three of his last four contests. He is in the zone right now and nobody on the Lakers can stop him.
Add in the fact that he torched L.A. to the tune of 48 fantasy points per game (across three contests) and I’m going to go ahead and assume this is an advantageous spot for him.
C: Brook Lopez – Los Angeles Lakers ($6.4k)
I like this Lakers vs. Pistons showdown as a bit of an underrated clash. Vegas doesn’t hate it, as it literally sports the closest spread (+5) of this entire slate and also has a solid 214 Total. That’s a solid game to attack and I think it could be a contest that goes slightly overlooked.
That has me on Lopez, who is already getting loads of run for the Lakers (30+ minutes in eight of his last nine games) but will be needed more than ever against Detroit’s size down low. Lopez has been playing very well lately and considering Detroit’s interior isn’t tough defensively, he could have a field day.
Center is loaded on this slate, so one strategy could be to fade the top dogs. If Lopez can deliver a 40+ fantasy point outing like I think he can, you’re getting elite value and then spending that extra cash elsewhere.
That’s the plan here. KAT versus Marc Gasol is not ideal, Jokic and Embiid could easily end up cancelling each other out and Gasol can’t be trusted in a possible blowout. There are a lot of risky games in general on this slate, so I’m clinging to this Lakers/Pistons game for several plays and then hoping my risks elsewhere pan out.
The one big change I might find myself making is with Barton and Jackson. If Booker and/or Warren return tonight, I’d probably drop from Jackson to someone like Michael Beasley, while I wouldn’t hate pivoting from Barton to Jaylen Brown. If I make moves like that, I’d see about trying to pay up over Burke to land Lonzo Ball or Kemba Walker.
Still, the main strategy is to go studless with Rozier, Griffin, Barton, Kuz, Lopez and even Jackson operating as my elite 6-pack. I just don’t feel the need to spend extra cash to get Walker or the top centers, so on such a weird slate, that could easily be a very rewarding NBA DFS strategy.
Love or hate my daily fantasy basketball picks? Let me hear it in the comments below. Either way, I wish you luck in your FanDuel games tonight!