Welcome to the Team Rise or Fall NBA DFS Risers Playbook for DraftKings and FanDuel. This morning we will highlight some standout Vegas totals, pace ups spots, notable injury news, and my preferred way to attack the slate.
We have a small five-game slate with a few teams on the second night of back to backs which will open some value with normal starting being given off days. The slate start time is being pushed back a half-hour with tip-off at 7:30 EST. As always with NBA, news is king, and the last half hour before lock will be the most important due to breaking news that can and will affect our lineups.
Houston Rockets @ Denver Nuggets O/ U 225
We’re going to kick-off with what is expected to be one of the more fun games to watch on the slate with Houston traveling to Denver. The Rockets are expected to be without John Wall, Boogie Cousins, Eric Gordon, and Ben McLemore. In Houston’s first game we saw a concentrated fantasy production from James Harden and Christian Wood – I don’t expect that to change this game.
On the other side of the court, the Nuggets are coming off a loss to the Clippers on Christmas Day. They are looking to win their first game of the season. They are being led by star center Nikola Jokic who is a triple-double threat any time he’s on the court. Point guard Jamal Murray is looking to kick it in gear after two subpar games to start the season.
Portland Trail Blazers @ Los Angeles Lakers – No Total when writing
This is looking to be a pace up game for the Blazers as they head down to Los Angeles. The Blazers are led by Dame Lillard who hasn’t put up one of the ridiculous bubble games we saw in the playoffs. The team is lead in scoring by C.J. McCollum. He had a huge game against the Rockets I just have a hard time seeing him outscoring Lillard consistently. I think Jusuf Nurkic has some upside in tournaments and is a relative bargain on DraftKings at $6.8k.
The Lakers are on the second night of a back-to-back so it will be imperative to watch out for any news leading up to game time. Anthony Davis was given some rest on Sunday night, it was unclear whether it was due to his calf issue or a day for load management. It could possibly be a load management day for LeBron James. Montrezl Harrell sees a $1.4k bump in price on DraftKings bring his price to $7.5k, while he remains $6.2k on DraftKings.
The Pistons will be in a pace up spot facing the electric Atlanta Hawks. There will some value to be had on the Pistons side of the ball with Blake Griffin and Derek Rose expected to be out tomorrow to rest. My favorite beneficiaries from Griffin and Rose’s absence are Jeremi Grant and Josh Jackson.
The Nets are in a slight pace up matchup facing the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder rank 9th in the NBA in pace, while the Nets are a few spots down ranking 12th. We will have to pay attention to Brooklyn new closer to lock as they are on the second leg of a back to back. I wouldn’t be surprised to see either Kyrie Irving or Kevin Durant be given a veteran day off. Spencer Dinwiddie left Sunday’s game with a knee injury in the third quarter. We’ll have to keep an eye on who will replace him in the starting lineup.
Clint Capela – Atlanta Hawks – Achilles
Danilo Gallinari – Atlanta Hawks – Game Time Decision Foot
Blake Griffin – Detroit Pistons – Rest / Load Management
Derek Rose – Detroit Pistons – Rest / Load Management
Spencer Dinwiddie – Brooklyn Nets – Knee
John Wall – Houston Rockets – Covid
Boogie Cousins – Houston Rockets – Covid
Eric Gordon – Houston Rockets – Covid
Ben McLemore – Houston Rockets – Covid
Carmelo Anthony – Portland Trail Blazers – Covid
James Harden – Don’t ask questions just lock him in. We saw this past Saturday that the team runs through him and he’ll have all the usage he wants.
Christian Wood – While his price did jump on both DraftKings and FanDuel there is no one to compete with for minutes. As long as Boogie Cousins is out Wood will play as many frontcourt minutes as he can handle.
John Collins – Collins saw his price tag drop on FanDuel but stay the same on DraftKings. He faces a Pistons team without starting power forward Blake Griffin. I like Collins as a pivot from Wood who should be highly owned.
Lakers / Nets – I continue to harp on this because of its importance. Keep an ear out for any news regards these two team’s stars. If LeBron were to sit I’m locking Anthony Davis. The same applies to Kyrie Irving or Kevin Durant, if either sit chances are I’m locking the one who is playing.
Remember this is an early look. Should you want specific targets from our NBA coaches check out our building blocks closer to lock.
Questions or comments? Feel free to hit me up in discord or on Twitter @EdArias87
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