DraftKings DFS NBA Strategy Advice: Lakers at Heat (10/4)
The Heat battled hard against the Lakers in Game 2 despite being down two of their usual starters, Bam Adebayo and Goran Dragic. Jimmy Butler and the troops now find themselves down 0-2 in the series heading into Game 3 on Sunday. Both Adebayo and Dragic are being listed as doubtful for Game 3, so we should expect to see a similar rotation for the Heat.
Meanwhile, LeBron James and Anthony Davis continue to shoulder the load on offense for the Lakers, scoring more than 50% of the points combined in each of the first two games. With this being the only game on the docket, DraftKings is running their signature single-game showdown contest for Game 3 of the NBA Finals between the Lakers and Heat.
This contest is structured with six positions, including one captain spot that earns you 1.5x fantasy points and five utility (UTIL) positions without a multiplier bonus. Let’s take a look at which players you should get into your lineups and those you may want to fade, and also identify which players are deserving of filling your captain spot.
Kendrick Nunn (MIA): $6,600
This one might come as a surprise, but Nunn has been really good in the absence of Goran Dragic thus far in the series. He’s averaging 26.2 fantasy points in 25 minutes per game. No other players in his price range (Kyle Kuzma, Dwight Howard, Danny Green, and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope) are averaging more than 1 fantasy point per minute like Nunn has through two games. If Dragic is once again ruled out for Game 3 (which seems likely), Nunn makes for an intriguing play at the Captain spot and provides you with some salary relief for the remainder of your lineup.
Kelly Olynyk (MIA): $4,800
Meyers Leonard technically got the start for Adebayo in Game 2, but it was Olynyk that saw the majority of the minutes at Center. In fact, he played 37 minutes compared to Leonard’s nine minutes, and it was Olynyk that ran with the starters for the majority of the game. He scored 24 points on 9-of-16 shooting with nine rebounds on the night. The output was a whopping 38.8 fantasy points, which was good for almost 13x value based on his $3,000 salary. His price tag for Game 3 only went up $200, making him an absolute steal if Adebayo misses a second straight game. As of this article, Adebayo is listed as doubtful on Miami’s final injury report heading into Game 3.
Note: LeBron James and Anthony Davis should both be rostered, but putting either one of them in your Captain spot will make it very difficult to roster the other should you want both Laker stars in your lineup.
Kendrick Nunn (MIA): $4,400 See write-up above
Kelly Olynyk (MIA): $3,200 See write-up above
LeBron James (LAL): $13,000
The Heat doesn’t have an answer for James, who has scored an average of 60.8 fantasy points in his first two games. He has just barely missed a triple-double in both Game 1 and Game 2, and there’s no reason to believe that won’t continue in Game 3. Fade James at your own peril, but that isn’t a recommended strategy on the one-game slate. The only real question becomes whether or not you decide to make him your Captain. If you go that route, attempting to roster both James and Anthony Davis could leave you with some bottom-of-the-barrel options to choose from to round out your lineup.
Anthony Davis (LAL): $12,200
Davis has scored over 30 points in each of the first two games of the NBA finals. He’s shooting a lights out 26-of-41 (63.4%) from the floor in the series. With or without Bam Adebayo, the Heat don’t have anyone that can slow down an aggressive Davis. As mentioned above, AD and LeBron have scored over half of the Lakers’ points thus far in the series. I highly suggest trying to fit both guys in your lineup, which likely entails utilizing another lower-priced player in your Captain spot.
Jimmy Butler (MIA): $9,800
Butler’s usage skyrocketed with Adebayo on the sidelines for Game 2. He put up a line of 25 points, eight rebounds, and 13 assists in 45 minutes, which was good for 56.5 fantasy points. With the Heat big man listed as doubtful to play in Game 3, I’d expect similar usage for Butler. He has always offered a relatively safe floor throughout the playoffs, but hasn’t always offered the high ceiling. With Adebayo likely out again on Sunday, he now presents that upside. Fire up Jimmy Butler.
Rajon Rondo (LAL): $7,000
Rondo is a little pricey for a guy coming off the bench, but he was awfully good in Game 2. He recorded a double-double, scoring 16 points and dishing out 10 assists on his way to producing 38.5 fantasy points. With Danny Green reportedly dealing with hip tightness, Rondo could be in line for an extended run in Game 3. At $7,000, Rondo certainly comes with a bit of risk, especially if he continues to come off the bench. However, he also provides a higher ceiling than Jae Crowder, who is the only other similarly-priced ($6,600) player on the slate.
Duncan Robinson (MIA): $5,200
After two dud performances in Games 1 and 2, Robinson’s salary has fallen from $6,800 in Game 1 to $5,200 in Game 3. I’m willing to overlook his shooting woes and confidence issues in the first two games and play him in Game 3 at his suppressed price tag. Robinson is still the starter and he has shown a keen ability in the playoffs to get hot from deep. He remains a low-floor, high-ceiling play, but is due for a breakout game after two less-than-stellar performances to begin the NBA Finals.
Alex Caruso (LAL): $3,400
Caruso is a fine option at his price point based on the opportunities he continues to see off the bench for the Lakers. He’s played 22+ minutes in Games 1 and 2, and has now scored 20 or more fantasy points in two of his last three games. With Danny Green reportedly dealing with hip tightness, Caruso could be in line for even more playing time in Game 3. He makes for a great play at just $3,400.
Andre Iguodala (MIA): $3,000
Iguodala has now seen 25 and 26 minutes in Games 1 and 2, respectively. The Heat clearly trust his NBA Finals experience and are comfortable playing him significant minutes against the Lakers. He recorded 24.3 fantasy points in Game 1 and 11.5 fantasy points in Game 2. Iguodala needs just 15 fantasy points to hit 5x value in Game 3, which seems very attainable given the heavy minutes he’s seen off the bench thus far in the series. With Adebayo now doubtful to play in Game 3, Iguodala’s minutes off the bench are safe, making him a solid play at just $3,000.
Markieff Morris (LAL): $2,800
If you’re in need of salary relief, look no further than Morris, who has played an average of 17 minutes off the bench in the first two games of the series. He likely won’t produce more than 20 fantasy points, but he doesn’t need to in order to hit or exceed 5x value. He scored 16.3 fantasy points in Game 2, which would be good for 5.8x value based on his $2,800 salary for Game 3.
Bam Adebayo (MIA): $9,600
On Saturday morning, Adebayo told reporters he expected to play in Game 3 after missing Game 2 due to a neck strain. Well, that may not be the case as the Heat big man is officially listed as doubtful on the team’s final injury report. The injury could be worse than Adebayo is leading on, and the team may take the decision out of his hands on whether or not he plays in Game 3. Even if he does suit up, he’ll likely be playing at less than 100%, which makes him a tough play at $9,600.
Tyler Herro (MIA): $8,400
After his 37-point explosion in the Eastern Conference Finals, Herro has cooled off a bit. In his last four playoff games since scoring a career-high in points, Herro has averaged just 26.6 fantasy points per game. At his inflated price point, he would need to hit 42 fantasy points in Game 3 to return 5x value. Outside of his 51-fantasy point performance in Game 4 against the Celtics, Herro has produced more than 40 fantasy points just one other time throughout the entire playoffs. I like the player a lot, but I can’t get behind spending $8,400 for the 20-year old, even if Bam Adebayo is out of the lineup again.