FanDuel DFS NBA Strategy Advice: Wednesday (4/14)
As the 2020-21 NBA regular season nears a close, we still have another month of non-playoff action to fill up our nightly DFS slates. Tonight’s stacked 11-game slate is no exception.
Each week, I’ll be here to profile some strong value plays, studs, and duds for Wednesday’s FanDuel 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 11-game slate features two games with betting totals above 230: IND/HOU (233.5) and WAS/SAC (239.5). Only two more have totals above 225: BKN/PHI (226.5) and DAL/MEM (225.5). I’ll feature quite a few names from those matchups as a result. Two matchups have totals below 215, and you should avoid them: MIA/DEN (212) and CLE/CHA (212.5).
On the injury front, the Clippers remain without Serge Ibaka, and Kawhi Leonard’s status remains up in the air. With Jamal Murray and James Wiseman both out for the season, their respective teams will have to adjust their rotations. Other big names who have already been ruled out include James Harden, Fred VanVleet, and Victor Oladipo. Pay close attention to the statuses of Kyle Lowry, Kyrie Irving, Myles Turner, and Buddy Hield, as they are all questionable.
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.
Christian Wood (HOU) $7,500
Wood could be facing a Turner-less Pacers squad, but even if the talented center does suit up, Wood’s salary is far too low. The big man has averaged 39.2 FanDuel points per game (FDPPG) on the year, good for 5.2x value, and he’ll play in what should be a high-scoring game, as these teams both rank top-seven in pace. It helps that the Pacers surrender the sixth-most FDPPG to centers.
Malcolm Brogdon (IND) $7,300
Like Wood, Brogdon should benefit from a fast-paced, high-scoring game. He should also benefit from the matchup, as the Rockets give up the sixth-most FDPPG to opposing point guards. Brogdon has averaged 49.2 FDPPG (6.7x value) over his last two games, and I expect him to keep that momentum rolling into tonight’s game.
Marcus Morris (LAC) $5,600
This pick is a bit speculative — if Kawhi Leonard returns, avoid Morris; if Leonard sits, start Morris. The reasoning here is that Morris has excelled when Leonard misses time — he has averaged 38.1 FDPPG (6.8x value) over his last two outings, both of which were games that Leonard missed.
Tyrese Haliburton (SAC) $5,500
Our projections are all over Haliburton on this slate, as they expect him to hit 5.9x value even if Hield suits up. The Kings are slated to face the Wizards tonight, and Washington gives up the third-most FDPPG to point guards and the fifth-most FDPPG to shooting guards, where Haliburton sees a combined 84% of his minutes. Combine that with the slate’s highest posted total, and you have a recipe for a slate-winning performance.
Kent Bazemore (GSW) $5,100
Bazemore will probably see more playing time with Wiseman done for the year and Kelly Oubre doubtful. He played 30-plus minutes in his last two outings, through which he averaged 26.5 FDPPG (5.2x value), and he’ll take on the lowly Thunder tonight. The full-game total for tonight’s matchup against Oklahoma City isn’t especially high (223), but Golden State’s implied team total (117.3) is nothing to scoff at.
Tim Hardaway Jr. (DAL) $4,800
The Grizzlies give up the most FDPPG to opposing small forwards, and that’s where Hardaway spends 81% of his minutes. He hasn’t set the world on fire recently, as he failed to hit 5x value in his last three games, but you can exploit his cratered salary as a result. He averages 23.7 FDPPG (4.9x value), so he just needs to have a slightly above-average result in a fantastic matchup to hit value. It helps that this game’s posted total is reasonably high (225.5).
Moses Brown (OKC) $4,700
There are a pair of heavily discounted centers at FanDuel tonight, and you may want to avoid spending up at the position as a result. Brown is the first of these, and he’ll take on the Wiseman-less Warriors tonight. The Thunder are on a back-to-back, but Brown played just 26 minutes last night, so he should be reasonably fresh. He is averaging 26.8 FDPPG (5.7x value) through his last three.
Reggie Bullock (NYK) $4,000
The Pelicans give up the most made threes per game (15), and Bullock leads the Knicks in made threes (2.2) and attempted threes (5.6). New York should heavily feature the sharpshooting veteran because of their opponent’s vulnerable perimeter defense, and he should easily hit value against this salary. He has gone for 5x value in four of his last six while averaging 22.2 FDPPG (5.6x value).
Ish Smith (WAS) $3,600
I don’t love Smith tonight, but he has more value than usual because of the matchup. Smith still managed to post 17.4 FD points (4.8x value) in Bradley Beal’s full return to action on Monday, and he should continue to see around 15-20 minutes per game. Against a defense like Sacramento’s, that’s a recipe for value at this low of a price.
Kevon Looney (GSW) $3,500
FanDuel knows that Wiseman is hurt, right? Though Looney isn’t a high-upside asset, he has averaged 19.2 FDPPG (5.5x value) over his last two games, and that’s quite attractive at a price this low. He may not have the slate-winning ability of more expensive guys like Joel Embiid or Nikola Jokic, but he can help you stuff your lineup with studs elsewhere.
Studs Worth Their Salary
- Russell Westbrook (WAS) $11,200: Westbrook is a walking triple-double. He didn’t even slow down in Beal’s return to action, and you can trust him to go off for a ton of points whenever he takes the court. The fast-paced matchup with the Kings gives him an even higher ceiling than usual; they allow the seventh-most FDPPG to point guards.
- Nikola Jokic (DEN) $10,900: With Jamal Murray sidelined, Denver’s offense will have to run through Jokic. Our projections expect him to lead the slate in fantasy points scored despite an unattractive matchup.
- Bradley Beal (WAS) $8,500: Jump on Beal’s discounted salary while you still can. He dropped 48.1 FD points (5.7x value) in his most recent game and played 36 minutes despite an alleged restriction.
- Tobias Harris (PHI) $7,300: The 76ers have turned back into the Joel Embiid show, but Harris has the potential for a big game against the banged-up Nets, as they allow the fourth-most points to opposing power forwards.
Notable Players to Fade
- Kawhi Leonard (LAC) $10,100: Leonard may or may not play tonight, but I’m leaving him out of my lineup either way. It’s a “day-to-day situation,” per head coach Ty Lue, and you may not want to risk a minutes limit for a player who costs this much.
- Zion Williamson (NOR) $10,100: This is a very unappealing matchup for Williamson. The Knicks give up the third-fewest points per game to power forwards and play at the NBA’s slowest pace.
- Jimmy Butler (MIA) $9,300: Butler hurt his ankle last night, and while he is expected to suit up for tonight’s game against the Nuggets, there’s always a chance that he could re-aggravate the injury and nuke your lineup.
Beyond our daily fantasy basketball content, be sure to check out our Daily Fantasy Basketball Tools. From our Lineup Optimizer – which allows you to build winning DFS lineups in seconds for Cash and GPP contests – to our DFS Cheat Sheets – that helps you get a quick read on the day’s players – we’ve got you covered this fantasy basketball season.