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DraftKings DFS NBA Strategy: Friday (4/2)

Apr 2, 2021

Happy Friday, everyone! Another busy week of NBA basketball is wrapping up with a typically loaded Friday night slate. Let’s jump right in!

Check out today’s NBA Tip-Off from DraftKings >>

Most Value Per Dollar 

With ten games to choose from tonight, there’s plenty of value to be had once again. As of this writing, we don’t have too much injury news to keep an eye on, though that’s always likely to change now that we’ve entered April.

The team that could sway value the most tonight is New Orleans. They currently list Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram, and Lonzo Ball as questionable. Domantas Sabonis, Donovan Mitchell, and Zach LaVine are other names to monitor leading up to tip-off.  We already know that Oklahoma City is tanking — err, I mean, dealing with a lot of injuries right now, so the Thunder definitely offer lots of value tonight.

Make sure to keep up with all the NBA news of the day leading up to tipoff. You should also monitor point spreads and expected point totals over at BettingPros to find the best matchup

Dennis Schroder (LAL) $7,100
Schroder continues to lead the Lakers while LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and now newly acquired Andre Drummond are out with various injuries. His salary has barely budged despite the fact that he has averaged over 41 DK points per game over his last four outings. He shouldn’t have any trouble reaching a similar point total tonight against a Kings team with the worst defensive rating in the NBA. Sacramento has also given up the fourth-most DK points to point guards over the last 15 games.

Robert Covington (POR) $6,100
It took Covington a long time to find his groove this season, but it seems safe to say that he has finally found it. He has averaged nearly 42 DK points per game over his last three. His $6,100 salary is far too cheap in a pace-up spot against the Bucks tonight. 

Evan Fournier (BOS) $5,900
Things haven’t gone great for Fournier so far in Boston, but it’s only a matter of time before he clicks with his new team. He’s played over 30 minutes in each of his first two games with the Celtics, and we’ve seen his 40+ DK point ceiling earlier in the season with Orlando. His recent struggles will likely keep his popularity down, making him one of my favorite tournament options tonight.

Josh Hart (NOR) $5,800
Hart is in an extremely interesting spot tonight. If Zion Williamson and/or Brandon Ingram sit out again, he’ll be a chalky cash play, which isn’t exactly a bad thing. On the other hand, if one or both of them are back in the lineup, Hart’s popularity will fall off a cliff. He’s shown the ability to put up big games off the bench when New Orleans is full at strength, so he makes an intriguing tournament option if we see Williamson and/or Ingram return. 

Theo Maledon (OKC) $5,800
The Thunder look to be short-handed again tonight, especially in the backcourt without Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Luguentz Dort, or Ty Jerome available. He just put up over 31 DK points on Wednesday night despite shooting just 3-16 from the field. Even a slight improvement against the Suns tonight could see him netting 40-plus DK points on his way to 7x value.

Gary Trent Jr. (TOR) $5,600
Trent has started all four games since joining the Raptors, but he wasn’t overly involved in the first three. That changed on Wednesday when Kyle Lowry missed due to injury, and Trent’s usage jumped to 28.8%. Lowry will remain out Friday, so we should expect Trent to be heavily involved again tonight in what should be a high-scoring game against the Warriors.

Danilo Gallinari (ATL) $5,000
The Hawks are coming off a double-overtime shootout with the Spurs on Thursday, so it’s tough to predict how they’ll respond with the short turnaround tonight in New Orleans. One thing is for sure: Atlanta will be short-handed in the frontcourt with John Collins still out. Gallinari doesn’t have much of a ceiling, but he is an extremely safe play at his modest $5,500 salary. 

Jalen Brunson (DAL) $4,700: The matchup with the slow-paced, defensive-minded Knicks isn’t ideal. Still, Brunson’s salary is far too low based on his recent production. He has averaged nearly 31 DK points/game over his last three, which works out to more than 6x value on his salary tonight. 

Marc Gasol (LAL) $4,700: This is a very risky call considering Gasol only played six minutes last time out, but sometimes you have to take a shot. Recently acquired center Andre Drummond is going to be out tonight, so there should be minutes available in the frontcourt. Gasol is a shell of his former self but can still put up strong numbers when called upon. I don’t want much exposure to him tonight, but if I’m making multiple tournament lineups, I’m going to mix Gasol into one or two of them.  

Dario Saric (PHO) $3,800: If you want to punt on the center position or find a bargain for your utility slot tonight, look no further than Saric. He’s averaged nearly 29 DK points over the last two games and should be able to keep it going tonight against Oklahoma City. It’ll only take 22.8 points for him to hit 6x value, something that’s well within his range of outcomes.

Studs Worth Their Salary

  • Karl-Anthony Towns (MIN) $10,100: Towns has been on a hot streak lately, averaging nearly 60 DK points over his last four games. There’s no reason to think Memphis has much of a chance to slow him down in what should be a high-scoring game tonight.
  • Damian Lillard (POR) $9,900: While it’s getting close, Lillard’s salary still isn’t back to where it belongs ($10,000). That could change after the projected shootout against Milwaukee tonight. 
  • Nikola Vucevic (CHI) $9,000: Vucevic has seen his fantasy production increase in three-straight games since joining the Bulls, yet his salary has actually been dropping over that span. Don’t be surprised if he tops 50 DK points tonight against Utah.  
  • Rudy Gobert (UTA): $7,900: Honestly, anytime Gobert is priced under $8,000, he will probably belong in the value section of this article. Consider him a stud tonight as he battles Vucevic and the Bulls. 

Notable Players to Fade

  • Luka Doncic (DAL) $10,700: It never feels great to fade Doncic, but I’m willing to do it tonight. The Knicks play at the slowest pace in the NBA and have the third-best defensive rating. I’d rather spend my salary elsewhere tonight.
  • Trae Young (ATL) $9,400: The matchup with New Orleans isn’t imposing, but after a double-overtime battle on Thursday, I’ll pass on Young tonight. The short rest and having travel on the back-to-back games isn’t ideal, and I’d prefer to find a safer option if I’m paying up.  
  • Jayson Tatum (BOS) $9,100: Tatum has been putting up strong numbers lately, and his salary has finally crept back over $9,000. Tonight, however, that’s too rich for me, as there’s a real chance the Celtics blow out Houston — leaving Tatum with less than a full allotment of minutes. 

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Aaron Larson is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Aaron, check out his archive and follow him @aalarson.