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FanDuel DFS NBA Strategy Advice: Thursday, July 30th

by Vaughn Dalzell | @VaughnDalzell | Featured Writer
Jul 30, 2020

The NBA will resume its season tonight in Orlando, and so NBA DFS returns as well. FanDuel has plenty of contests to enter for the league’s two-game slate tonight, so let’s take a look at some lineup possibilities with value plays, studs, fades, and more!

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Value Plays: Point Guard

Lonzo Ball (NOR) vs. Jazz $7,900 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Reggie Jackson (LAC) vs. Lakers $3,800 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Quinn Cook (LAL) vs. Clippers $3,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ High

Out of the point guard group, Ball is easily the most dependable in DFS with his ability to spread the ball around. He records 0.97 fantasy points per minute, and the Clippers’ Reggie Jackson sits close behind him at 0.92. Ball has also averaged 13 points, 8 assists, and 5.3 rebounds in three meetings with the Jazz. His ability to double-double and affect the game in a variety of ways makes him the better play, but Jackson is in line for a massive increase in minutes.

The Clippers have guards Patrick Beverley and Lou Williams out for tonight’s contest, plus Sixth-Man of the Year candidate Montrezl Harrell out as well. Jackson has the opportunity to make an impact on tonight’s game, which means that he’s a low-risk, high-reward player tonight. The Lakers’ Quinn Cook will compete for minutes with JR Smith, Dion Waiters, and Alex Caruso on the second unit now, but out of the whole group, he has the most championship experience.

Shooting Guard

Donovan Mitchell (UTH) vs. Pelicans $7,200 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Jrue Holiday (NOR) vs. Jazz $8,300 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Paul George (LAC) vs. Lakers $7,400 ⭐⭐⭐ Low

You can’t go wrong with any of these three on opening night, but it’s tricky to pick between them. I ranked Mitchell first because the Jazz’s offense features him on the perimeter as the lone triple-threat scorer, and I expect his 1.08 fantasy points per minute to increase with Bojan Bogdanovic out. Mitchell is going to have to record 25-plus nights routinely if the Jazz wants to climb the Western Conference standings, his matchup against the Pelicans will be a good opportunity for him.

Holiday averages 1.17 fantasy points per minute and had one monster performances against the Jazz. On the season, Holiday averages 39.5 fantasy points per game, but versus the Jazz, he recorded 28 points, five assists, and four rebounds to surpass 50 fantasy points.

Out of all three talented shooting guards, George averages the most fantasy points per minute at 1.30, and he’s knocked down 10/19 (52.6%) three-pointers in the Clippers’ scrimmages. The Clippers are going to be desperate for scoring when George and Leonard are off the floor, so when they’re on, expect shot attempts to fly left and right.

Bet $1, Win $100 if the Lakers or Clippers Hit a Three >>

Small Forward

Kawhi Leonard (LAC) vs. Lakers $9,500 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
LeBron James (LAL) vs. Clippers $11,400 ⭐⭐⭐ Low
Brandon Ingram (NOR) vs. Jazz $7,300 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium

Any given night, LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard are natural choices. They’re superstars. So how much reward is there with Brandon Ingram? While Leonard and James both could go for 50 fantasy points tonight as they do on most nights, Ingram has had his best efforts versus Utah. The Jazz haven’t played against rookie Zion Williamson yet, so Ingram has already given the Jazz all they could handle.

In three games, Ingram has averaged 39 points per game, 6.7 rebounds, and 5.3 assists versus the Jazz on a 52-47-87 shooting line. He’s been phenomenal versus Utah, and with the Pelicans 3.5-half games out of the eighth seed, they need a win here — look for Ingram to try and deliver it. His risk comes from the potential that Williamson could have another impactful game and limit Ingram’s potential DFS production.

Power Forward

Anthony Davis (LAL) vs. Clippers $10,400 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Zion Williamson (NOR) vs. Jazz $7,300 ⭐⭐⭐⭐ Medium
Marcus Morris (LAC) vs. Lakers $3,500 ⭐⭐⭐ Low

Anthony Davis is the clear must-have big of the power forwards and centers. The Clippers are a great matchup for him tonight, as he has played well against them before. He should be in all of your lineups tonight, and pairing him with the Jazz’s Rudy Gobert in the first game is a win-win. I don’t see power forwards or centers outscoring Davis tonight with the handful of Clippers out.

That said, one of the Clippers who will pick up the slack is Marcus Morris. Morris is likely to start alongside George and Leonard, and he’ll also see time on the second unit. This makes him a low-risk option who should see 30-plus minutes.

Zion Williamson will make his debut versus Utah, and the rookie was on fire when we left off in March. He was averaging 23.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 2.2 assists in 19 games before the hiatus. While he averages 1.21 fantasy points per minute, I don’t think that he’ll surpass his 29.4 minutes per game average in his first game back. After missing practices due to quarantine and a family matter, he could be in for a warmup game.


Rudy Gobert (UTH) vs. Pelicans $8,200 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Low
Joakim Noah (LAC) vs. Lakers $3,800 ⭐⭐⭐ High
Jaxson Hayes (NOR) vs. Jazz $3,900 ⭐⭐⭐ Medium

Gobert is one the premier bigs in the league, and he’s the reigning two-time Defensive Player of the Year. The Jazz center recorded 20.5 points and 7.5 rebounds in his last two exhibition scrimmages in less than 25 minutes in both games. He’s playing well and faces a weak interior Pelicans defense, and he should live up to his expectations tonight.

The Clippers signed Joakim Noah for depth, but they’ll need to play him early tonight. There’s a chance that he outplays Ivica Zubac tonight, as he has more experience against Anthony Davis, Dwight Howard, and JaVale McGee. Noah has played limited but notable minutes in the Clippers scrimmages, but his minutes in an actual competition are unknown, which makes him a risk even at that price.

Hayes is another risky pick with more reward, as the Pelicans’ have limited depth behind Derrick Favors. Hayes could see increased playing time with each game, and against the Jazz, he’s averaging 9.7 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 2.0 assists on 66.7% from the field in three games this season.

5 Studs Worth Their Salary:

  • Anthony Davis (LAL) $10,400: Davis is averaging 26.3 points per game and 7.3 rebounds in three meetings with the Clippers. LAC is without Montrezl Harrell tonight, so Davis should feast.
  • Rudy Gobert (UTH) $8,200: Gobert averages 13 points and 16.5 rebounds versus the Pelicans this season, and he seems poised for at least another double-double against Derrick Favors.
  • Brandon Ingram (NOR) $7,300: Ingram has scored 33, 36 and a career-high 49 points in two games against the Jazz this season.
  • Donovan Mitchell (UTH) $7,200: With Bojan Bogdanovic out, Mitchell projects as the leading scorer tonight for Utah.
  • Reggie Jackson (LAC) $3,800: Jackson will see a significant increase in minutes tonight with Patrick Beverley and Lou Williams out. That makes him a sleeper at this price.

5 Notable Players to Fade:

  • Zion Williamson (NOR) $7,100: Williamson has yet to play the Jazz this season, and after spending time away from the team and in quarantine, he may be out of rhythm to start.
  • Mike Conley (UTH) $5,700: Conley’s role increases in this offense for a short period, but his production has declined with Utah overall. Spend the extra money for Mitchell.
  • Derrick Favors (NOR) $5,400: Favors is appealing because the Pelicans don’t have much to offer in their interior, but I’d pass on him with the Lakers’ bigs being more attractive in DFS.
  • Kyle Kuzma (LAL) $4,700: Kuzma’s role with the Lakers diminished a little more with the signings of JR Smith and Dion Waiters to the second unit.
  • Ivica Zubac (LAC) $4,500: Zubac could collect a majority of the rebounds for the Clippers, but I look for Davis to be too much to handle. Plan for Zubac to exit before he plays extensive minutes.

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Vaughn Dalzell is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Vaughn, check out his archive or follow him @VaughnDalzell.

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