DraftKings DFS NBA Strategy Advice: Sunday (4/11)
Well, we’ve reached the end of yet another weekend. If you’re looking to hold off the Sunday scaries, well, NBA DFS is a great distraction! Here are the best players to feature for Sunday’s NBA slate at DraftKings.
Each week, I’ll be here to profile some strong value plays, studs, and duds for Sunday’s DraftKings slate. I’ll do my best to point you in the right direction, and if you have any questions, you can hit me up on Twitter at @is_sirois. All matchup data is pulled from our defense versus position tool.
Most Value Per Dollar
Tonight’s eight-game slate will tip-off at 7 p.m. ET. The betting totals suggest that we’ll see a lot of offense tonight, as we have a pair of games with totals above 230 — IND/MEM (233) and CHI/MIN (231) — with NOR/CLE (228) close behind. Expect to see plenty of players from those matchups below.
Two of the slate’s matchups have totals below 220: TOR/NYK (216) and DET/LAC (216), and I’m mostly avoiding those games.
Below is a list of the top-10 players of the day expected to generate the most value relative to their salary, ranked in order of how much they’ll cost you.
Paul George (LAC) $8,400
With Kawhi Leonard sitting this one out, George should be quite chalky tonight. He dropped 47.8 DK points (5.7x value) the last time Leonard sat out, so you should feel comfortable using him on tonight’s slate. George has been hot, too, as he has averaged 53 DraftKings points per game (DKPPG) over his last two outings.
Jonas Valanciunas (MEM) $7,400
With the Grizzlies and Pacers projected for such a high score, it’s a good night to fire up Valanciunas or Morant. They both won’t cost you much, but they’ll both provide slate-winning upside — especially because the Pacers won’t have Myles Turner to defend Valanciunas. Turner boasts the fifth-highest defensive RAPTOR rating, and the Pacers have struggled against opposing bigs in recent days.
Ja Morant (MEM) $7,000
While Morant isn’t a direct beneficiary of Turner’s absence, this total is too high to avoid him. Morant ranks 36th in usage rate (27.3%) among players with 500-plus minutes, which is the highest such rate in Memphis. He should find a way to involve himself in a healthy number of the Grizzlies’ plays in a high-scoring matchup. Morant has averaged 39.4 DKPPG over his last two outings (5.6x value).
Darius Garland (CLE) $6,800
This is a raw upside pick. The Pelicans struggle against opponents from deep; they allow the most made threes per game (15.1). Of course, the Cavs rank dead last in made threes per game (9.5), but Garland leads the team in the metric (1.9). His salary is a bit high, but he has averaged 42.2 DKPPG over his last three games (6.2x value), partly because of how hot he has been from long range. He went 5-10, 3-7, and 3-7 from deep through that span.
Isaiah Hartenstein (CLE) $5,200
Our projections absolutely adore Hartenstein with Jarrett Allen still on the shelf. Hartenstein has averaged 38.8 DKPPG over his last three (7.5x value), so you should feel confident about featuring him in a lineup or two despite the unfavorable matchup. His salary remains far too low.
Goran Dragic (MIA) $4,700
The Heat won’t have Victor Oladipo tonight, and Tyler Herro is questionable, has regressed, and has been the subject of recent media controversy about his role. Meanwhile, you can find the Dragon at an affordable price against the NBA’s worst defense against point guards. He may not get a ton of run, but his salary is low enough to help you fit some higher-upside pieces into your lineup.
Coby White (CHI) $4,600
White hasn’t been great since the Bulls moved him to the bench, but he should punch a squeeze above this salary. He has averaged 22.5 DKPPG over his last three games (4.9x value), and he has a shot to hit 5x value against the Timberwolves tonight. They give up the fourth-most DKPPG to point guards.
Doug McDermott (IND) $4,500
The Grizzlies allow the most DKPPG to power forwards, and with Myles Turner out, you can expect Domantas Sabonis to see most of his minutes come at center. That frees up McDermott to exploit Memphis’ defensive vulnerabilities, and he should easily hit 5x value against this salary. He most recently posted 29 DK points (6.4x value) against the Magic.
Isaac Okoro (CLE) $3,900
I’ll throw out one final Cavalier: Okoro. He has seen his role increase in recent games, and the high projected total for this one makes him somewhat attractive at just $3,900. You only need 19.5 DK points out of him, and he has hit that threshold in half of his last four outings.
Daniel Theis (CHI) $3,500
Theis hasn’t seen consistent minutes for the Bulls thus far, but I’m featuring both Chicago centers against the T’Wolves. They allow the second-most DKPPG to opposing centers, and Theis doesn’t have to do that much to hit value tonight — he just needs to score 17.5 DK points. He has scored at least that many points in three of his six games for the Bulls.
Studs Worth Their Salary
- Luka Doncic (DAL) $11,000: Doncic is a safe bet to produce against the Spurs. They give up the sixth-most DKPPG to point guards, and Doncic is averaging a triple-double against San Antonio this season.
- Nikola Vucevic (CHI) $9,100: Vooch’s salary is a bit too low for this matchup. The T’Wolves give up the second-most DKPPG to centers, and we’ve seen the Bulls trust Vucevic with a ton of work since his arrival. He failed to hit value against this price in his last two games, but he should get back on track tonight.
- Zach LaVine (CHI) $8,600: LaVine dropped 50 points against the Hawks, and Chicago still couldn’t win. I don’t usually recommend chasing the points, but look for him to keep up his streak of strong performances against a fast-paced Minnesota squad.
- Paul George (LAC) $8,400: I explained why I like George above — Kawhi Leonard’s absence makes George a must-start.
Notable Players to Fade
- Damian Lillard (POR) $9,500: You can find much better value at point guard. Lillard only went for 41.3 DK points (4.34x value) against Miami the last time these teams met.
- Kristaps Porzingis (DAL) $8,900: Dallas’ offense should flow through Doncic tonight, and that will come at Porzingis’ expense. The Spurs have been solid against opposing bigs, and center Jakob Poeltl has the NBA’s third-best defensive RAPTOR rating.
- Pascal Siakam (TOR) $8,800: Siakam’s salary is far too high for this matchup. The Knicks play elite defense at a slow pace, and they allow the second-fewest DKPPG to opposing power forwards.
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