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NBA DraftKings & FanDuel DFS Primer: Friday (3/11)

Mar 11, 2022
Russell Westbrook

I’ve actually had one of my best betting weeks of the season, and I feel like I’m in a groove right now. I’m understanding these rotations really well and getting a good grasp on how these teams play. We have a ton of fast-paced teams on this card, and I feel like it’s going to be imperative to stack the Pelicans.

That Thursday card was a disappointment, but we’re looking at an entire nine-game ledger here. We have numerous great matchups and some high-scoring games on the docket. There’s a lot to discuss, though, so, let’s get started with the schedule and odds.

View the best player prop bets for tonight’s slate with our NBA Prop Bet Cheat Sheet >>

Schedule and Odds

  • MIN at ORL (MIN -7.5) O/U: 232.5
  • LAC at ATL (ATL -5.5) O/U: 228.5
  • DET at BOS (BOS -14) O/U: 215.5
  • CHA at NOP (CHA -1) O/U: 229.5
  • DAL at HOU (DAL -11.5) O/U: 225.5
  • CLE at MIA (MIA -5.5): O/U: 209.5
  • NYK at MEM (MEM -10) O/U: 230
  • UTA at SAS (UTA – 7.5) O/U: 231
  • TOR at PHX (PHX -6.5) O/U: 221.5
  • WAS at LAL (LAL -4.5) O/U: 228.5

Check out our consensus game odds as well as the odds from each sportsbook at BettingPros >>

Injury Report

Core Plays

Ja Morant (PG – MEM): $10,800 DraftKings, $10,100 FanDuel
It doesn’t appear that Ja has much of a chance to win MVP, but this guy is having an amazing season. He’s averaging over 47 DraftKings points per game, scoring at least 52 fantasy points in five of his last seven outings. That’s terrible news for the Knicks, with NY ranked 20th in total defense. Ja is also the sort of player who wants to step up against big-name teams, and you know he’ll be going full tilt against a team like the Knicks. He had 47 fantasy points in their last matchup, despite shooting 33 percent from the field.

Russell Westbrook (PG – LAL): $8,300 DraftKings, $7,600 FanDuel
There’s no doubt that Westbrook has had a terrible season, but it looks like he’s starting to hit his stride with AD sidelined. He’s averaging 44 fantasy points per game over his last two outings, flirting with triple-doubles in both of those. We love that glimmer of hope from this former $12K player because Russ can be a 60-point guy on any given night. The matchup with Washington is brilliant, too, with the Wizards ranked 24th in defensive efficiency while surrendering the sixth-most fantasy points to opposing point guards.

Devonte Graham (PG – NOP): $4,300 DraftKings, $4,300 FanDuel
This is the best play on the board. New Orleans will be without McCollum, Ingram, and Williamson, leaving Graham as the primary playmaker. He was already playing at a $5K level, and we love the fact that he’s looking at 35-40 minutes, 15-20 shots, and a 30 percent usage rate in this expanded role. The matchup with Charlotte is the icing on the cake, with the Hornets ranked third in pace, 23rd in defensive efficiency, and 28th in points allowed. Getting 10X value is a tough feat but it feels like a real possibility here.

Cash Game Considerations

Luka Doncic (PG – DAL): $12,000 DraftKings, $10,700 FanDuel
Doncic isn’t getting mich love for MVP, but he’s trying his best to get in the race. He’s got a 40 percent usage rate with Porzingis off the floor, scoring at least 65 fantasy points in 10 of his last 15 games. That should be easy to reach against Houston, with the Rockets ranked second in pace and dead-last in defensive efficiency. He had 60 DK points in their one matchup earlier this season, despite a nightmarish shooting night.

Jonas Valanciunas (C – NOP): $7,800 DraftKings, $7,500 FanDuel
JV will be used in almost every lineup out there, and rightfully so. We believe he will lead the Pelicans in shot attempts and usage rate, putting him in line for 25 points and 15 rebounds. The simple fact is, he needs to do everything with McCollum, Zion, and Ingram all out. His recent form makes him even more enticing, dropping 62.3 DK points in his most recent outing without those guys! Not to mention, the Hornets surrender the fourth-most fantasy points to opposing centers.

Rudy Gobert (C – UTA): $7,400 DraftKings, $7,400 FanDuel
We’ve talked about this all year, and all the same rules apply. Gobert is a rebounding monster, leading the NBA with 15 rebounds per game. That has given him a fantastic floor, scoring at least 27 fantasy points in 47 of 51 games this season. Facing San Antonio is sensational, too, with the Spurs sitting fifth in pace and 25th in total defense.

GPP Targets

Jalen Green (PG – HOU): $6,000 DraftKings, $6,500 FanDuel
It’s hard to understand why Green remains so cheap. This rookie has clearly found his form, scoring at least 28 DraftKings points in six straight games. He’s averaging over 35 fantasy points per game in that span, seeing his usage and workload increase as the season progresses. The matchup with Dallas is challenging, but it really doesn’t matter with this sort of brilliant form and cheap price tag.

Mitchell Robinson (C – NYK): $4,900 DraftKings, $6,700 FanDuel
Mitch-Rob has been asked to do much more for NY, with Nerlens Noel expected to miss this game. That has forced him into a 30-minute role, scoring at least 33 fantasy points in three straight games. He’s actually scored at least 52 DK points three times over the last three weeks, and that sort of upside is impossible to find from such a cheap player. In their previous meeting with Memphis, Mitch collected 45.3 DK points in one of his best games of the year.

Ish Smith (PG – WAS): $4,600 DraftKings, $5,300 FanDuel
Washington doesn’t have a point guard, and it’s left Ish with an immense role. He’s scored at least 26 fantasy points in three of the last four games, seeing his ball-handling increase without Beal. The best part of this is the matchup, though, with Los Angeles surrendering the most fantasy points to opposing point guards. That’s easy to understand why with LA ranked fourth in pace and 26th in total defense.

Value Plays

Mason Plumlee (C – CHA): $4,500 DraftKings, $5,500 FanDuel
This guy has been playing at a $6K level for weeks, and we have no clue why he remains so cheap. He’s scored at least 23 DK points in 15 of his last 18 games, flirting with a 30-point average in that span. He’s also coming off a 39-point masterpiece in his most recent outing, and that could happen again with New Orleans owning a 22nd OPRK against opposing centers.

Herbert Jones (PF – NOP): $4,800 DraftKings, $4,300 FanDuel
Herb has taken a step back since the McCollum trade, but the Pelicans will need him here. Their three-best players are out of the lineup, and it should leave Herb with a 40-minute role. That alone makes him tough to fade at this sub-$5K price tag, especially since he’s averaging over 25 fantasy points per game since the middle of December. His elite defense becomes even more intriguing against one of the fastest-paced teams in the NBA.

Austin Reaves (SG – LAL): $3,400 DraftKings, $4,500 FanDuel
LA is trying to figure things out, and it looks like Reaves is going to be their starting shooting guard as we advance. He’s played at least 26 minutes in four straight fixtures, scoring at least 29 DK points in two of his last three games. That’s unbelievable from a $3,400 player, and it should continue against one of the worst defenses in the NBA.

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

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