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DraftKings NBA DFS Strategy Advice: Thursday (5/6)

May 6, 2021

The Bulls seem motivated to give Daniel Theis all the minutes he can handle

This is one of the final Thursday slates of the season, and it’s a little bigger than usual. We usually only have a handful of games on these showcase slates, but we’re treated with seven games on this docket. That has us with a lot to discuss, so let’s go ahead and get into it!

If you have any comments or questions, reach me on Twitter @Bartilottajoel

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

Most Value Per Dollar 

We rarely have players at every position in this section, but that’s just what we have here. It’s usually stacked with centers, but we have just two in this section, with one of them being multi-eligible. That makes things a lot easier because it’s usually a nightmare to figure out which wings to stick into our lineups. Our favorite play is actually power forward-eligible, and that’s a great place to start your build.

If you’d like to see more information on how the betting landscape will be for this slate, check out BettingPros.

Below is a list of the top players of the day expected to generate the most value relative to their salary. These are ranked in order.

Daniel Theis (CHI) $4,900
The Bulls seem motivated to give Theis all the minutes he can handle, and if Nikola Vucevic is out again here, DT is the best play of the day. In the last game without him, Theis dropped 30 DraftKings points in 40 minutes of play. That’s actually a low total in that amount of playing time, and we could easily see 40-50 DK points if he sees a similar workload here. Charlotte is a great matchup, too, surrendering the ninth-most fantasy points to opposing centers.

LaMelo Ball (CHA) $7,900
Ball saw his price drop because of an injury, and it’s hard to understand why. He’s scored at least 35 fantasy points in all three games since his return, which is right on par with his season average. We really love that here, with Chicago ranked 18th in total defense and Ball dropping a 45-spot in his most recent outing.

Kyle Lowry (TOR) $7,700
Since Lowry rested on Tuesday, we have to assume he’ll be ready to go here. All of the random resting has kept his price way too affordable, but he’s been stellar whenever he’s played. In fact, Lowry has at least 39 DraftKings points in three straight games, averaging 48 DK points per game in that span. That’s obviously stupendous at this price, especially with the Wizards playing at the fastest pace in the NBA.

Hamidou Diallo (DET) $4,800
Diallo has been starting for this rebuilding Detroit team, and it led to a career game on Tuesday. The former OKC guard dropped 47 DraftKings points in that gem, bringing him to a 34-point average over his last three games played. That makes it hard to believe he remains this cheap, and he could gain even more value depending on who Detroit decides to rest here. UPDATE: It sounds like Diallo might sit, so look for Sekou Doumbouya, Killian Hayes, and Isaiah Stewart to step up.

T.J. McConnell (IND) $5,800
Indiana is really shorthanded right now without Myles Turner and Malcolm Brogdon, leaving McConnell with a big role. TJ fell just shy of a triple-double en route to 41 DK points in the last game without those two. More importantly, his minutes are on the rise, which is awesome, with McConnell averaging 39 DK points per game in the 18 outings he’s played at least 29 minutes. We love this matchup, too, and we’ll discuss that more later on.

Moses Brown (OKC) $4,800
It’s tough to know what to expect with OKC, but we know Brown will grab some boards. The big man is averaging 12 rebounds a game over his last four fixtures, despite playing just 23 minutes a night in that span. This youngster should get more minutes going forward, too, and we love his 27-point average over his last 25 games played. That looks even better with Golden State sitting third in pace while having one of the worst center rotations in the game.

Kent Bazemore (GSW) $5,500
Bazemore has been a pleasant surprise for the Warriors this season, and he’s stepped into a really nice role with Kelly Oubre Jr.sidelined. That has allowed him to start for the last two weeks, averaging 34 DraftKings points per game across his last five outings. Those 34 fantasy points are a brilliant number from someone this cheap, especially against a Thunder team that allows the fourth-most points in the NBA.

Tim Hardaway Jr. (DAL) $5,200
It’s tough to trust this guy, but we want to ride THJ as long as Kristaps Porzingis remains out. In the last three games without him, Hardaway is averaging 31.3 raw points per game, en route to a 40-point average on DK. He’s shown this sort of ability in the past, and it’s hard to fade a guy who’s draining seemingly every single shot he takes. Not to mention, Brooklyn ranks 26th in defensive efficiency ratings.

Alex Caruso (LAL) $4,100
The Lakers are missing Denis Schroder and LeBron James, leaving Caruso as their primary ball-handler. In the last two games without those two, AC has started both, playing at least 26 minutes in each of them. He’s also averaging nearly a fantasy-point-per-minute in that stretch, too, and if he does that in this expanded role, Caruso would be a heck of a value in this price range.

Check out our NBA Prop Bet Cheat Sheet for the top bets of the day >>

Studs Worth Their Salary

  • Russell Westbrook (WAS) $11,000: Westbrook will probably remain in this section for the remainder of the season. He’s a cheat code with the way he’s playing right now, averaging nearly 23 points, 13 rebounds, and 13 assists over the last month. He’s been even more absurd recently, scoring 156 combined DraftKings points over his last two games.
  • Domantas Sabonis (IND) $10,400: With Brogdon and Myles Turner sidelined, Sabonis is asked to do everything for this team. He’s got 73 DK points in back-to-back games and should thrive in a matchup like this. Atlanta ranks 23rd in defensive efficiency, and Dom has scored at least 43 fantasy points in their two meetings this season.
  • Kevin Durant (BKN) $9,900: With Brooklyn missing James Harden, KD runs the show right now. He’s scored at least 59 fantasy points in three straight games, taking at least 22 shots in all of them while playing 40-plus minutes in B2B games. That’s a scary workload from one of the best scorers of all time, and he should continue it against a 20th-ranked Dallas defense.

Notable Players to Fade

  • Luguentz Dort (OKC) $6,400: Who the heck knows who will play for OKC? That alone makes Dort scary, sitting in five of the Thunder’s last 14 games. He’s been falling off recently, too, scoring 23 or fewer fantasy points in each of his last three outings. That’s even more worrisome against a Top-10 Warriors defense because there could be serious blowout potential as well.
  • Joe Harris (BKN) $5,300: We mentioned how much Durant is doing right now and there’s not much left when KD and Kyrie Irving are taking so much usage. He’s failed to crack 22 fantasy points in each of his last four games, averaging just 18 DraftKings points per game in that span.
  • Lauri Markkanen (CHI) $4,600: Markkanen is a talented young player, but his role is just too small, with Nikola Vucevic, Theis, and Thaddeus Young swallowing up so many frontcourt minutes. In fact, Lauri is averaging just 16 DK points per game across his last 14 outings.

Create DraftKings lineups using our DFS Lineup Optimizer tool >>

Beyond our daily fantasy basketball content, be sure to check out our Daily Fantasy Basketball Tools. Our Lineup Optimizer 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.

Joel Bartilotta is a featured writer at FantasyPros. For more from Joel, check out his archive and follow him @Bartilottajoel.