NBA Picks and Advice for DraftKings and FanDuel 8-18
Written by, Jac Calliott
We were treated to an exciting start to the NBA playoffs on Monday as we saw a close game in three of the four. Today I expect more of the same outside of the Bucks playing a banged-up Magic team. Outside of Westbrook missing game one for the Rockets, there isn’t much injury news to address. This is a very interesting slate with some great spots to pay-up at and also some great values so let’s get into it.
Damian Lillard ($11,400) – Although everyone is riding high on the Blazers right now, and rightfully so, I don’t think they have much of a chance vs. the Lakers. That being said, if you’ve ever watched Lillard and the Blazers you know they’ll go down shooting. Lillard is averaging an insane 42 minutes a game in the bubble, and I expect him to go berserk once again.
Other Option: Chris Paul ($7,700)
Markelle Fultz ($4,200) – This is a play that I find extremely interesting today. The Magic have already announced that Fultz will be moving into the starting lineup for game one. He draws a tough matchup today in the Bucks, and there may be a bit of blowout potential here, but it’s a risk I’m willing to take. Even if the Bucks do end up smoking the Magic, I could see Fultz still getting some extended run. At that price tag, he should have no problem exceeding value as we know he’s a do it all point guard when he’s on.
James Harden ($11,700) – This is a bit of a copout to choose Harden to write about here, but he’s the clear cut number one stud on this slate. At that price tag he certainly makes it a bit more difficult to build a solid lineup, but with lots of great value plays again today I’m going to make it happen. I think because he’s a bit cheaper and since he’s been unconscious lately ownership might be higher on Lillard today. With no Westbrook, a one-point spread, and a meeting against former teammate Chris Paul? Yeah go ahead and give me James Harden today.
Other Option: CJ McCollum ($8,100)
Gary Trent Jr. ($4,500) – Trent is a guy that throughout the bubble has carved himself out a nice chunk of playing time. He’s averaging just over 33 minutes per game in Orlando, and we’ve seen how aggressive he is when he’s on the floor. In Saturday’s play-in game against Memphis, Trent record a whopping 5 steals. While I don’t expect those kind of defensive numbers again today, I do expect Trent to see a lot of playing time and to be ultra-aggressive while he’s out there. At this price, I’m all over Gary Trent Jr.
Lebron James ($10,700) – Lebron is an interesting play today because his recent numbers leave a lot to be desired. He gives you a nice pivot off the two top studs in Lillard and Harden, and with a guy like Lebron James, we could see a behemoth fantasy night at any point. I expect James to play like the King we’re accustomed to, and anytime I can get an under-owned Lebron I can’t pass it up.
Other Option: Robert Covington ($6,500)
Danny Green (3,200) – For the value spot at Small Forward today I like another Laker. Danny Green’s play of late has left a lot to be desired, but with a world-class shooter like him, that can change on any given night. He’s a veteran with championship experience, most notably with the Toronto Raptors just last season. The Lakers are still down a couple of important guards in Bradley and Rondo, and it wouldn’t surprise me to see a veteran like Green get some extra run from coach Frank Vogel today. At the near-minimum price, Green is a solid piece for your lineups if you want to fit some of the higher-priced guys.
Other Option: Eric Gordon ($4,500)
Anthony Davis ($10,400) – I know, I know, another Laker. I would honestly be doing anyone reading this an injustice if I didn’t write about AD today, though. He flat out owns the Portland Trailblazers, posting 78 DKFP and 63 DKFP performances in his last two against them. He also has insane numbers when being guarded by Nurkic and Whiteside. With so much hype around the Blazers and Nurkic, AD could be the forgotten stud of the day, especially in this game.
Other Option: Giannis Antetokounmpo ($10,500) – Blowout Risk
Jae Crowder ($3,900) – Since being traded for by the Heat, Crowder has carved himself out a nice role in their rotation. He’s been starting at Power Forward for them and is averaging right about 25 DKFP. In a playoff game where I expect the pace to slow down a bit, I’m all over a guy with the defensive upside of Jae Crowder.
Bam Adebayo ($7,400) – Bam is a guy who has yet to have that massive performance in the bubble. We’ve seen his price slowly decline, and finally, I’m ready to buy low again on Bam Adebayo. He draws a matchup in Indiana today that isn’t the best but could be much worse and with a Center as versatile as Bam, he has upside all over the court. I prefer studs at other positions today, but if you find yourself with the salary to fit Bam, I like him quite a bit today.
Brook Lopez ($4,700) – I love this price tag for Brook Lopez today. Like I touched on earlier, this game is at a bit of a blowout risk. If Orlando can keep it even somewhat competitive, I expect Lopez to not only pay off his cheap salary but provide some nice value as well.
I hope to see you guys in Discord as we continue to crush the NBA Playoffs over at Team Rise or Fall!