The return of daily fantasy basketball went well on Friday, as I was able to cash with a mixture of Celtics and Hornets. I don’t go really hard at these preseason daily fantasy basketball contests, however, so I didn’t win much money and it’s possible you didn’t either.
I do try to lean toward a GPP tilt with all of my rosters, though, so take everything you see here with a grain of salt. This is also preseason play right now, so times that by 10.
That being said, Monday offers up a fun four-game NBA DFS preseason slate at FanDuel and I’ll be entering a lineup into the $0.25 game. It’s not much upside, but it’s also low risk for an extremely volatile DFS genre.
I still love the NBA and I know our readers are playing these contests, so feel free to use these NBA DFS picks as you will:
PG: Ben Simmons – Philadelphia 76ers ($10.2k)
I can’t piece this squad together with news in mind for the entire day, so I’m going for a stars/scrubs approach tonight and I’ll adjust later as news trickles in. You’ll have to do the same, as there will be a lot to monitor even on a four-game slate.
That being said, Simmons is the top point guard to own on this slate if he suits up. John Wall is a fine pivot, but if one of these guys would be more limited, it’d be Wall. Simmons has immense upside can can hit 30+ fantasy points in limited action.
PG: Trae Young – Atlanta Hawks ($6.1k)
I will have rookie fever on this slate and it starts with Young, who will be battling Jeremy Lin for Atlanta’s top point guard gig. I have to think that means he plays quite a bit, both in this game and during preseason in general. He’s a good price for his offensive upside and I’m not that interested in anyone else.
Trey Burke and Markelle Fultz are solid pivots down if you want to save money at the second PG spot, but I don’t feel the need.
SG: Buddy Hield – Sacramento Kings ($5.8k)
Jrue Holiday played last night, so while he’s the top SG option, I won’t be using him. I can’t imagine the Pelicans risking their star players on the second leg of a back-to-back set during the preseason. He’s in play if they do, but I’ll start my SG section with Hield.
Hield has proven himself to be a solid scorer in the league already and he looks to get even better this year. With Bogan Bogdanovic on the shelf for the moment, Hield is looking at a huge role from the jump. He’s a nice price and should get some decent run tonight.
SG: Kevin Huerter – Atlanta Hawks ($3.6k)
It’s not like I’m enamored with the Hawks or anything, but they have a slew of young guys that can score the ball and should play a good deal over the next two weeks. Huerter is one of them, as he can really fill it up offensively and will be looking to make a name for himself after missing time with a hand injury.
He isn’t a lock to do much, but he’s dirt cheap and helps open things up for me from a salary perspective.
SF: Mikal Bridges – Phoenix Suns ($4.1k)
Josh Jackson is probably my favorite SF option tonight with Devin Booker sidelined, but I don’t need to force him or T.J. Warren onto my roster. Instead, I’ll dive slightly deeper with Suns lottery pick, Mikal Bridges. He was a beast at Villanova and has the offensive chops to blossom quickly in the pros.
I doubt that happens in year one, but Bridges could show well in preseason play and is a great value pick on this slate.
SF: Kevin Knox – New York Knicks ($5.1k)
I definitely want Knox on my squad. Kristaps Porzingis is out for the next couple of months (if not longer), so the Knicks need to see what this kid can handle. Knox was awesome during summer league action and is simply way too cheap given his versatility and upside.
PF: DeAndre Ayton – Phoenix Suns ($7.2k)
Anthony Davis is worth paying up for if he plays, but as I mentioned with Jrue Holiday, the top Pels could sit this one out after playing on Sunday night.
That has me looking at Ayton, who will be in line for some solid run as he tries to get acquainted with the Suns. He’s truly a center, but I’ll slide him in at the PF slot with no concerns. He has the upside of a 15 and 10 guy right away so even in limited duty he projects well.
PF: Aaron Gordon – Orlando Magic ($7.3k)
The Magic could take it easy on their franchise forward, but Gordon is highly versatile and explosive. If he’s out there, he’s probably the top PF on this slate if The Brow does indeed sit this one out. You can also try to save with Marvin Bagley Jr. or even Harry Giles, but I’m not seeing a need for it.
C: Joel Embiid – Philadelphia 76ers ($10.4k)
The same goes for Embiid, who can be a monster and will be going up against a weak Magic defense. He could wreck here, assuming he’s active and isn’t limited in any capacity.
If Embiid is out, pivoting to Nikola Vucevic ($7.7k) makes a ton of sense. Not only would he be a fine option anyways, but not having to face Embiid’s defense would give him a boost. It’d also free up some cash for you to upgrade in one of the spots I’ve gone cheap at.
Overall, I’d like a three-headed dragon here with Simmons, The Brow and Embiid teaming up with a slew of interesting rookies. However, I would imagine the Pels take it easy on their top player, so paying $12k for Davis doesn’t appear to be in the cards.
I’m still taking on a lot of risk with a lot of young prospects, but it’s preseason NBA DFS and a tournament team, so you need to be willing to gamble a bit.
Obviously if guys are out you will want to pivot in a few spots, but it’s way too early in the day to worry about inactives. I’d start with this core and adjust as needed.
Hopefully this helps you in your build process, one way or another. Good luck tonight and enjoy the games!