I’m already getting sick of the NBA scheduling. On opening night we got two games, then we got 11, then three and on Friday we’re back to a big slate with nine games. It’s at least more palatable than 11 games and not super tiny. So, there’s that.
Last night wasn’t perfect, but I did hand in some solid NBA DFS picks. John Wall was fantastic, Dario Saric was a solid play, LeBron James was fine and Derrick Jones Jr. was an elite value punt. I missed out on Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, Bobby Portis and Zach LaVine, but there were still some solid picks there for the taking.
Let’s move on with tonight’s fun nine-game and check out my favorite roster over at FanDuel:
PG: Spencer Dinwiddie – Brooklyn Nets ($5.5k)
D’Angelo Russell is the future in Brooklyn, but the Nets can’t quit Dinwiddie, who was great for them last year. He got off to a hot start with 35.8 fantasy points in his first game and I see no reason why he can’t keep the momentum going against the Knicks.
Derrick Rose ($4k) is a viable punt here (31 minutes vs. Spurs), but I love the value with Dinwiddie, who is much safer.
PG: Trey Burke – New York Knicks ($5.8k)
Most will take one look at Burke’s first game (22.6 fantasy points) and move along, but he did that in just three quarters. He had a very solid debut and he could keep it rolling against a bad Nets defense. This should be a fun, fast-paced game and both Burke and Dinwiddie are simply too cheap on this slate.
There are admittedly a slew of viable point guards to choose from tonight, but not a single locked-in “must have” elite. That’s provided Russell Westbrook (listed as doubtful) doesn’t play, of course.
SG: Joe Harris – Brooklyn Nets ($4.3k)
Brooklyn is pretty banged up at the moment, so as long as they’ll be without bodies and are facing the Knicks, you might as well consider some of their options.
Harris is another one to give a look, as he played 37 minutes and dropped in 28 fantasy points in his 2018-19 debut. He’s looking at a solid role and New York offers a fine matchup. He’s also pretty cheap and can serve as my “free square” pick for this slate.
Ideally I’m getting a guy at the bare minimum for that role, but I’m not using someone at $3.5k just for that purpose. I want every single option to at least give me a shot at some production and Harris absolutely does that at a steep discount.
SG: Klay Thompson – Golden State Warriors ($6.4k)
The Warriors head to Utah to face a tough Jazz defense for their second game of the year. Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant will garner higher ownership, but Thompson is the only guy of this trio that had any success against Utah (30 fantasy points per game) a year ago. He’s a fun late-game hammer and should be pretty contrarian.
SF: Paul George – Oklahoma City Thunder ($9.2k)
Here’s another elite late-game hammer, as PG-13 continues to go to war with Russell Westbrook (likely) on the shelf. That will make Dennis Schroder a priority play, but I’d rather use George here. Schroder will get the Patrick Beverley defense, while nobody on the Clippers can stop PG-13.
We know that, since he crushed them last year to the tune of 54 fantasy points per contest across three meetings.
SF: Tyreke Evans – Indiana Pacers ($6.9k)
Most will opt for Victor Oladipo in this spot (admittedly cheap at SG), but he struggled with Milwaukee’s length last year. That won’t be as much of an issue for Evans, who is adept at scoring inside and creating for others. He got off to a solid start in the opener and should keep cooking here.
PF: Kevin Love – Cleveland Cavaliers ($8k)
It’s hard to not slide Anthony Davis into my lineup immediately, but he is insanely priced at $13.3k. I will try my hand at building a winner without him and Love should be part of that. His upside is massive with King James now in La La Land and he showed that with a solid 29-point fantasy outing in the opener.
Love wasn’t even hitting his shots and had a tough matchup with the Raptors in Toronto, so I know there’s upside just around the corner. Tonight he gets the Timberwolves, who really don’t have a big that can silence him. I’m expecting a big game in correlation with this discounted price tag.
PF: Jayson Tatum – Boston Celtics ($6.4k)
Tatum showed in Boston’s home opener that he was no fluke last year, as he erupted for 40 fantasy points in a win. He has a tougher matchup tonight against Toronto, but he’s a versatile player that knows how to score. I think he’s still way too cheap given his talent and upside.
C: Enes Kanter – New York Knicks ($7.5k)
There are a lot of interesting center options tonight, but few offer the upside Kanter can. He has a shot at 20 and 20 anytime he plays and that’s certainly plausible against a bad Nets defense. The Battle of New York is officially on tonight and Kanter will hope to duplicate the success he saw in this matchup a year ago.
I like this Nets/Knicks game and I’m picking my spots elsewhere in terms of usage and upside. PG-13 and Love are two guys I really like on this slate and while I don’t mind hunting for elites, I’m not looking to force them.
The Brow is just too expensive. I’d much rather pay for Giannis Antetokounmpo or just not use a stud. I’m also not paying almost $10k for Jimmy Butler, as mad as he may be.
Overall, this Nets/Knicks game should be a good one and that’s what helps set everything up for me. Agree or disagree? Let me hear it in the comments below!
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