NBA Analysis for January 8, 2021

Hello Everyone! 

bathrobeDFS here with your daily analysis.

I will work through every game, analyzing any and all relevant data I can muster with regards to how they will perform in a DFS capacity.

I appreciate any and all support, just know that this analysis will always be free for you all!

Make sure you follow me on twitter: @bathrobedfs

And Make Sure you go and check out my FREE projections! Did Did I mention they are FREE? And the result of a tremendous amount of work?

I love you all.


Main Slate

Vegas Lines

(Today’s Update in Parenthesis)

218.5 – PHX 112.5 – DET 106
217 – NO 111.5 – CHA 105.5
234.5 – BOS 120 – WSH 114.5
208.5 – NY 105.5 – OKC 103
231.5 – MIL 118.5 – UTA 113
227.5 – HOU 116.25 – ORL 111.25
222 – BK 113.25 – MEM 108.75
226.5 – TOR 115.75 – SAC 110.75
231.5 – LAC 117.75 – GS 113.75
NO TOTAL – CHI @ LAL

Advantage Spots

Jerami Grant OR Blake Griffin

While I can’t say I absolutely love either of these plays tonight, I would definitely love Grant if Griffin was out. With both in, their prices are slightly too high for how I expect them to produce, sure, but they aren’t high enough for their ceilings. Which means if you want to play these guys, either of them are risky GPP types.

Playing Phoenix is no longer a free square, as it used to be. If you look at it, while it’s still early and it could change dramatically, we are seeing a Suns team playing at one of the slowest paces in the NBA with one of the better defenses. As it stands, they are one of the best at limiting fantasy production to PGs and are, by far, limiting fantasy production to both wing positions better than anyone. Yes, I know. It sounds crazy. But, right now, if you are a guard or a SF, you don’t want to go near the Suns. CP3 has taken this team and changed it fundamentally and we need to adjust to that. 

Who does that leave? Well, it leaves PFs and Centers. While you can take a chance on a fairly priced Mason Plumlee, I am going to take a chance on a Jerami Grant that is giving you 40 DKP even with Blake Griffin playing. I am also going to take a look at Blake Griffin who has not looked great this season but will get some good time at PF as well. Again, I wish both of these guys were cheaper and I’m not going to start my lineups with them. Especially on a giant slate with a ton of better options. But If I was playing 20 lineups, I would try to make sure I had at least some exposure to both these dudes, just for their ceilings and potential.

Chris Paul

Like with the players on the other side of this game, I don’t really love anyone from this team. Detroit, like Phoenix, has been playing really slow this season. Their D, however, hasn’t been nearly as good. And with Hayes out for a while, the Pistons should be relying on some extra Derrick Rose (who will be playing through an injured knee), which should make their already bad PG defense continue it’s slide to the bottom. This makes Chris Paul, who is fairly priced with higher upside, a great play. I don’t love him, mind you, but I think he’s incredibly solid and I wouldn’t mind having him in my lineups tonight.

If you’re going to go here, I understand wanting to take a chance on Devin Booker. Dude has 60 real point upside and he’s 8200. However, he only has one game this season where he cleared 40 fantasy points, much less real ones. Sure he’s getting between 20-25 points a game consistently, but there are enough Suns to do other things now, and his ancillary stats are suffering. So I would be fine continuing to play Booker in hopes he will get hot and put up one of his classic 28 FGA games where he scores 50, but I don’t see that as a guarantee coming anytime soon. And, if it does, I would expect it to come against a team like GS and not the Pistons.

Given how poor the Pistons have been against SF, I wouldn’t mind some GPP exposure to Mikal Bridges, though his 5500 price tag is, again, more than fair enough. Still, here’s one of the people who should see a boost against the Pistons, and 35 DKP isn’t out of the question. 

Lastly, given how poor Griffin has looked, I also don’t mind taking a GPP chance on Deandre Ayton but, much like Booker, I find his price completely fair (if not slightly expensive) for the way he’s been producing (as well as for the team they’ll be playing). Like Booker, Ayton has only managed 1 game this season over 40 DKP and, at 7800, you would need him to clear that and thensome if you want to win a tourney on a big slate like this.

Lock Spot – Bigs Against Charlotte

While I originally called this Lock Spot “Centers Against Charlotte”, Biyombo has actually been playing shockingly well on the defensive end. It’s not something I would expect he can keep up but, as we’ve seen, it’s not always centers who are getting the huge boost against Charlotte.

It could be, mind you. 

But, as we have seen in plenty of games, it could easily be the PF that goes absolutely nuts.

Either way, we have found the Hornets can’t stop bigs and, one way or another, one of them is going to have an absolutely bonkers game

With a game against New Orleans there are only 2 issues you need to concern yourself with. First, can the Hornets hang with the Pelicans in this game. Vegas only has the Pels winning by 6, though I would think, especially at home, the Pels would win by 8-10 pretty easily. Which puts the risk of blowout there, though not one I would let hamstring your exposure completely.

Second, the “too many cooks” issue. The Pels have 3 fantastic producers who are all Bigs, who all play a bunch of PF/C. I mean, of course, Brandon Ingram, Zion, and Steven Adams. If this game stays close, given how Charlotte plays, you could easily play 2 of these 3 guys. We should see 2 of them in the 40s with 50+ DKP not out of the question at all. Given that they are 8500, 7900, and 6300 respectively, that’s not bad. 

I should also add that, obviously, Adams is the worst play of the 3. But he will also be the least owned and is coming off a 44.5 DKP performance showing you he has a pretty decent ceiling and, perhaps, given that in the 3 games before that he had 31 and 35 DKP performances, he is much more fantasy viable than he was in OKC. 

Don’t get me wrong, this is not the game of the night. Far from it. Right now it’s projected to be the 2nd lowest scoring on the entire slate. So don’t go absolutely nuts here. Like I said, there are plenty of things in this game to not like. But playing bigs against the Hornets isn’t one of them. That’s something you will make money doing all season, and I will keep letting you know that.

Gordon Hayward

I am going to add this to the list with Detroit and Phoenix as a team where I don’t really love anyone. However, given the way usage has looked the last few games, the price on Gordon Hayward is just too cheap. Three games ago, against a tough Philly team, he got 38 minutes and put up 47 DKP proving he is going to get the minutes and the usage. Last game, against the Hawks, he broke out, putting up 25 shots in 39 minutes, on his way to a fantastic 61.25 DKP game. That would be 5x value if he was 12000 salary. He is 8200. 

One of the consequences of LaMelo Ball getting extra run is other guards getting less. While they haven’t been doing terribly, we have seen Ball take over and Graham and Rozier start to take a back seat. And Ball seems to have decent chemistry with Hayward, and has no problem, as a plus-passer, getting Hayward the ball and letting him get his shot off. 

While the Pelicans have been playing slow with decent D this season, the Hornets are, for their ceilings, underpriced. So while I like Hayward the best, I wouldn’t mind having a couple shares of Graham and Rozier or Ball either, though, again, all 3 are fairly priced (and Graham and Rozier are a little too expensive for their recent production), in case one of them has a ceiling game. It also means taking a look at PJ Washington, coming off 2 consecutive games of 30+ DKP at 5700, or Bismack Biyombo, who should be looking at 30 minutes this game to try and mitigate the huge size of this Pels squad.

Mike Conley

At this point in the season, relying on some of these value numbers can be a little shaky. But there are certain spots that stick out that I want to take a chance on. This is one of them.

The Bucks do something pretty incredible – they play at one of the fastest paces in the NBA which means giving opponents a bunch of extra possessions. Regardless of that, they continue to be one of the best defenses – one that reduces value to almost every position. That is not a per possession number either, which is what makes it incredible. They are just that solid. 

So while the Jazz get a nice pace boost, they are going to be seeing an incredibly tough matchup at almost every position.

Last year, there was one exception – the Bucks were bottom 3 in the NBA against Centers.

This season, so far, they are that bad against PGs. While I do expect this to change, right now the Bucks are increasing scoring to PGs by an NBA leading 32%, increasing 3s by an NBA leading 51%, and increasing FG% by an NBA leading 19%. They are also reducing turnovers by 17%, which is 3rd worst in the NBA. They might be reducing the other ancillary stats but, given this huge weakness that has emerged, I am willing to try and attack it as best I can.

That means taking a long look at Mike Conley today. The Jazz have seen 3 straight blowouts, meaning Conley has seen about 27 minutes a game. Before that, though, he was seeing 34 or 35 minutes a game and, before the blowouts (where he was putting up DKP in the 20s), he had one 33.25 DKP game and 2 games over 50 DKP. While I don’t think this is a certainty by any means, it shows you what his ceiling is and, if the statistics are to be believed, he’s going to have the best chance on the Jazz of getting there. 

He doesn’t have the usage of Donovan Mitchell. He doesn’t have his ceiling either. And Mitchell is underpriced at 7600. But I think this will just help Conley get completely overlooked.

It’s a risky play today. Especially on a big slate. Especially on a team that keeps seeing blowouts going against a Bucks team that keeps blowing teams out. But I wanna take that shot.

Nikola Vucevic

Vucevic is the type of player who should always run about 10000. But, lucky for us, he has enough up and down games that he is never priced for good games when they come along. So, while it’s not a tremendous discount, it’s nice to be able to get Vuc in what is supposed to be a close, high scoring game at only 9k. 

So far this season, Vuc has played 8 games. He has 4 games under 40 DKP. and 4 games right about at 50 DKP. They are also seemingly random – some are against good teams, some are against bad. Some are against fast teams, some against slow. Some against good defenses, some against bad. Hell, for the most part, he hasn’t even had a consistent 2 game series.

Still, I expect this to be, as i said, one of the highest scoring games of the night. I expect the game to stay close. I also expect Vuc to be able to play his game against either Wood or Cousins, no matter who starts. I imagine Tucker will be tasked with primarily defending Gordon. If you think Tucker takes Vuc, I don’t mind taking some GPP shots on Gordon instead.

Vuc (and the other Magic players) get a slight usage boost if Fournier is out as well. I would be more likely to play a Ross or Gordon in that circumstance though, really, everyone in that salary range on the Magic is priced fairly for how they’ve been playing (though Gordon clearly has a higher ceiling than his price would indicate)

If you want to go deep GPP, I don’t mind a flier on Bacon or Gary Clark. Bacon, especially, has shown you some good games. But he is about 4k now and that’s too much for his general usage and PPM. Clark is someone I would be more happy to play if Gordon was out, or if this game was going to blow out.

The elephant in the room – the injury to Markelle Fultz should also give a slight usage boost to Vuc and the other players on the team. With MCW also out, this opens up a ton of playing time for rookie Cole Anthony and the new 2nd string PG on this team, Jordan Bone. Anthony I am fine with playing a decent amount given his price, but if he is popular, I would be under the field given his volatility and the usage he would give to the bigger veterans. Bone, at 3100, is a great, deep GPP play. Especially if you think this game blows out. He could easily get 20 DKP tonight though it’s also possible he gets you 7.5. Both are clearly underpriced, though, so I don’t blame you if you wanna go all in. I expect a ton of analysts to take the easy way out here and just talk about Anthony, anyway, ignoring the higher usage players with a better chance of helping you win. 

The Missing Nets

As of right now, we know Kevin Durant will be out. We know Nick Claxton will be out. We know Kyrie Irving will miss one more game, at least. And Tyler Johnson, who missed last night’s game, is questionable. That opens up a ton of minutes for a ton of people who could get a ton of production against a poor Memphis defense. 

We would start with the same people that crushed value last night, since their prices are almost all the same. Some prices came up, sure, but not nearly enough.

Caris LeVert ran the team and did everything. He has 3×2 upside with the ability to get 50+ DKP here. He is only 7400. He was 75% owned last night, though, so beware the ownership. Just know if he does the same thing tonight (and he probably will), if you don’t have him, you probably won’t cash.

Joe Harris is still only 5500 and he ran the 2nd unit, putting up 19 shots (including going 6 of 9 from three), and getting you 28p/6r/4a en route to a fantastic 48 DKP. If he could do that against a much better Sixers defense, he could do that tonight. Just expect, again, he will be extremely chalky. For good reason. GIven his general reliance on shooting to get fantasy points, he is more of a risk. But he showed last night, he has the potential to produce across the board if given the chance and, with all the injuries, he was given more than that.

TLC came off the bench and did horribly. Like, one of the worst games I’ve seen him play. He still wound up getting 23.5 DKP on a 3900 salary. He got 9p/4r/1a/1b/3s showing he’s the type of player who, given the minutes, he can get you value and thensome based mostly on ancillary/defensive stats. If he has a good shooting day today, he could get you 30 DKP easily.

Tauren Prince and Jeff Green are both under 4k and both got you over 20 DKP as well. Both of these guys are in play, again, as there are so many minutes that need to be played, and they are missing a lot of players who will produce. Both of these guys are significantly more risky than anyone else I mentioned, but neither should be left out of your pools. You can honestly add DeAndre Jordan to this list, too, though he’s 4100. 

Jarrett Allen got another start and continued his fantastic play. In his last 3 games, now, he has gotten 38, 54.5, and 35.25 DKP. At 6800 that’s a pretty decent deal. Especially since, tonight, he’s going against a much worse Grizzlies team against the position. He is a high effort player who is getting near 30 minutes and has shown you he can produce. 

The final person to look at (and give serious consideration to) is Chris Chiozza, who is a fantastic PPM producer when given the chance to play. He got 16 minutes last night at the minimum price and put up 23.75 DKP, even though he only shot 3 for 9 from the field. He got you rebounds and assists and a block and steal on top of the 8 points he landed. He has a higher ceiling than this, could do better than this tonight, and is still 3k. 

I don’t know if you want to have 4 Nets in your lineup tonight. It’s a big slate. But Kyrie and Durant’s absences have given you a great group of players who can produce serious fantasy numbers for far too cheap a price. You should take advantage of that. I know the field will.

Jonas Valanciunas

You know what’s a thing, and has been a thing for a couple years now – playing Centers against the Nets. The reason for that is Jarrett Allen. Right now the Nets are 5th worst against Centers, increasing value in the stats that matter, and giving us one fantastic play to target against BK tonight – JoVal. He’s coming off a 41 DKP performance in only 28 minutes against a slow Cleveland team, and he should do better against BK.

His 7200 price tag is also a joke, but partially due to circumstance. The Grizzlies have been playing very poorly since Ja Morant went down and it’s shown. The Grizz got smashed by the Hornets, leaving JoVal limited minutes. Then they got held to 94, 92, and 90 points their next 3 games (2 of which were against the fantastic Lakers). 

He hasn’t had a good amount of minutes since the last time they played BK, when he got 39 minutes and dropped 43.5 DKP in what was a relatively poor game for him. 

While nothing is guaranteed and I wouldn’t be shocked if BK blows this game out (especially with how easily they handled Philly), if Memphis can keep this game close, I would bet a good chunk of that would be because of JoVal approaching 50 DKP and helping you win some money. 

This also means feel free to have some Gorgui Dieng and Brandon Clarke in GPP, since both would get some nice advantage here as well. JoVal is my favorite, though, since Dieng would see the bench D of Jordan.

Caution Spots

Knicks vs Thunder

This is the worst game of the night and I don’t think it’s that close. Vegas also agrees, giving this game the first sub-210 total I can remember so far this season. As of right now, the Knicks are playing at the 4th slowest pace in the NBA and, somehow, are reducing fantasy production the 3rd most as a team. Not joking. It’s ridiculous. But it’s happening. 

Right now, as a team, the Knicks are reducing opponent scoring by 8%, 3s by 14%, rebounds by 2%, assists by 10%, steals by 18%, FG% by 10% and increasing turnovers by 14%. That’s ludicrous. But, given this sample size and what we’ve seen so far, it’s legit. And, if it isn’t, I don’t expect us to see that from a pretty shitty Thunder team as it is. So, while SGA is going to remain underpriced for his usage and ceiling at 7800, and while George Hill is still under 5k for some reason, I am going to have almost no exposure to OKC here, even though all of their prices are cheap. 

On the Knicks side, you absolutely have to keep Julius Randle in your player pool every game, no matter what. Randle started the season playing 35 minutes the first 2 games and hasn’t gone under 37 since then, only having that one 37 minute game in a 20 point blowout. Everything else has been 38+ minutes. 

Since that first 2 game stint, Randle has played 6 games and gotten 60 DKP in 4 of them

His usage is off the charts. His production is well over his salary. He’s still not owned highly enough. And he isn’t going to see anyone on the Thunder who will be able to stop him. 

I don’t mind taking some cheap Knicks in GPPs either, but I don’t really love anyone else. Robinson is 5700 and, if Noel is out again and Taj Gibson is not yet available, he should be in for a decent game. With Burks out and Knox and Bullock QUESTIONABLE, we could see some extra run in the hands of Austin Rivers and Quickley, both of whom are underpriced for that. Other than that, like I said, it’s a terrible game I expect to be one of the slowest, lowest-scoring games of the night. I don’t mind some GPP exposure to some of these dudes, but the only one that you could even consider a safe bet is Julius Randle, who is awesome. 

Milwaukee Bucks

First up, taking on the Jazz isn’t a great spot. However, this is the Bucks – one of the best teams in the NBA on both ends of the court. A team that, I would say, has played more blowouts this season than non-blowouts. No matter who they play, there is a chance the game will be over quickly, as we’ve seen a majority of the time already this season.

However, there are a couple things I want to point out.

First, Giannis is underpriced if he’s under 12000. Period. He’s 10900. He regularly gets 60+ DKP in close games and blowouts. If this game stays close, he will do everything, he will get all the usage, and he should have no problem getting there. I expect him to be popular, though, which means hedging and staying away. If it turns out he has 2% ownership, feel free to jump on board. Cause that’s an amazing play regardless of the situation.

Second, the Jazz have been one of the worst teams in the NBA against SFs (if not the worst). While (as I always say) the sample size is way, way too small to make conclusive statements, it’s pretty shocking to see Utah increasing scoring by 13%, 3s by 15%, rebounds by 10%, FG% by 15%, and reducing TOs by 23% to the position. While he’s too expensive for the game (and for the tremendous amount of usage Giannis gets), there are plenty of ways Middleton can more than pay off a 8k price tag (and clear 50 DKP). I just don’t think it’s that likely here given everything. I would force some exposure if you are MMEing though.

Last, the Jazz have been the 3rd worst team against Centers so far. Again, shocking because of Rudy Gobert but, on the other hand, not shocking at all if you’ve been reading the last 2 years. If you have, you know that, year after year, Utah has been worst against Centers (from a value added perspective). This year, while some of the numbers are a little flukey, I do like that they are increasing scoring by 11% and 3s by 31%. Numbers that should go down, but numbers that show you just where they can successfully be attacked, and the type of Center that can do it (stretch 5s). It just so happens Brook Lopez, only 4600 and coming off a 35 DKP performance, shoots 6+ 3s a game. His value comes from the one thing Utah is weakest against. Given the price and everything else, he may be my favorite GPP play on the whole team. 

The final person I will mention is a punt play you should all strongly consider – DJ Augustin. With the rash of injuries to the Bucks’ backups, Augustin has been playing 20 or so minutes the last couple of games and, even though his price has only come up from 3200 to 3400, he has produced 22.25 and 24.5 DKP games in that span. Given that no one is expected to come back, I would be more than happy to take that chance on DJ here.

Situations to Monitor

Russ Westbrook QUESTIONABLE

The real viability of this game comes down to the status of Russ Westbrook, who is recovering from a dislocated finger he suffered on Wednesday. In addition, the Wizards are playing a back-to-back, meaning Russ is going to be resting one of the next two games anyway. I would assume he is going to be rested this game, and back for Saturday’s game against Miami, but we have to see what happens. 

If Russ plays, this should be a much closer game, and it is a real stacking possibility. Washington plays at the fastest pace in the NBA and there should be a ton of points scored on both sides, with the game staying close. His pricetag of 10400 is a lot, but he’s shown that, even against top defenders, he could get you 60 DKP and a 3×2 pretty easily. His presence also makes the other players on the Wizards less attractive for DFS purposes, as he does eat up a ton of usage. The team is just not big enough for Russ and Bradley Beal to get all the usage they want, with production being left over for anyone else. 

If Russ is out, even at 9700, even with blowout risk, and even with a tough defense matchup against a really slow team, Brad Beal is coming off a 60 real point performance against a fantastic defensive Sixers team. I would have no problem giving him a go, though I would expect he is absolutely chalk and he would need more than 50 DKP to get you a tournament win and, while possible, given all the other issues with this game I don’t think it’s wrong to bet against it and separate yourself from a field that will be point chasing with their recency bias.

While not bad against any position, the only spot the Celtics are worse than league average is against Centers. This puts Thomas Bryant into consideration if Russ is out as well (as well as GPP consideration if Russ plays), though I understand, again, not wanting to run with a fair-to-high price tag for someone that may not see a lot of the 4th quarter. 

The Myriad Celtics Injuries

As of right now, we know the Celtics will be without 3 guards – Kemba Walker, Romeo Langford, and Javonte Green. What we don’t know is the status of all the Questionable dudes here. Right now, Tristan Thompson, Jeff Teague, Grant Williams, Robert Williams, and Carsen Edwards are all rocking a Q tag meaning if, somehow, all these players are out, the Celtics will be rolling with a rotation of only 9 or so players, including dudes like Tacko Fall, Tremont Waters, and Aaron Nesmith, three dudes you can’t really count on. 

Needless to say, this would be a pretty fantastic smash spot for the 6 dudes left, all of whom have been producing pretty well as it is. So we need to take a real look here and be prepared to jump on Payton Pritchard, Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart, Daniel Theis, and even Semi Ojeleye

Teague playing makes Pritchard less viable, though he would get backup/blowout run. 

If Thompson and the Williams’ are out, it should really boost the viability of Theis and Ojeleye. 

If Teague is out and Pritchard is getting serious minutes, I prefer Tatum to Brown. If Teague plays, I will take Brown over Tatum. Smart is a cash-type play who rarely shows ceiling, so I would be less inclined to play him, barring every one of those dudes being out. And even then, his price is fair.

Christian Wood QUESTIONABLE

Wood has been a monster this season. Almost every game they’ve played a close game, Wood has approached (or exceeded) 50 DKP. Even when Cousins came back, he was still getting 33 minutes a game, dropping 2x2s, getting a good number of blocks and steals, and putting up 20+ points a game. While Orlando is not a great team to target against, at 7900 you are going to play Wood every single time, without question. At 7900, Wood is a gift. 

I would say that, if he plays he eats up usage but it’s not like Cousins isn’t going to use just as much (if not more) usage himself – he’ll just get 10 fewer minutes. Still, that is still a small boost to Harden and Wall and Gordon (in that usage order). It would also make Cousins a lock. I was skeptical last game given his potential time on the court, but they gave him a solid 23 minutes where he dropped 40 DKP and his price barely changed. I don’t mind taking Rockets if Wood is out, but the only one I love would be Cousins.

I should also note that the Magic have been awful against PGs this season, but a large reason for that was Fultz. While I don’t expect Cole Anthony or Jordan Bone to do any better, I will still reserve judgement until I see how it’s gonna go down. Still, if you want to take some extra Wall (or Harden) regardless, I understand. Wall is just too cheap at 8000, regardless of opponent and we’ve all seen Harden well exceed an 11k salary, no matter who they’re facing. 

If Wood is in, you play him without any question. He’s just too cheap and, even in a bad matchup, I still expect an easy 50 out of him. 

As far as punts, with House out again, if McLemore plays, I would take a chance on him at 3100. If McLemore is still not in game shape, we could see Nwaba get another 37 minutes at 3700 and drop more than 20 DKP.

De’Aaron Fox and Richaun Holmes QUESTIONABLE

This has a major impact on this game. If both of these guys are out, I don’t expect we will see this game stay close. It would make it hard to trust any of the more expensive guys, as FVV and Lowry and Siakam and OG are all fighting each other for usage as it is, creating a “too many cooks” situation where only 1 or 2 of them has a good game every night, and who that is seems to change game-to-game. If you add that uncertainty to a game that should blow out, you have a lot of salary you’d need to worry about, spent on players who may not produce.

If Fox and Holmes do play, I have no problem taking a chance on one or two of these guys. The Kings are really only good against Centers (due to Holmes), meaning we may see a tougher road for Siakam but, all in all, the Raptors should be able to exploit the extreme defensive weaknesses the Kings have shown at both guard and forward positions. 

Given that Fox and Holmes couldn’t practice yesterday, I am going to assume they are out. If that’s the case, I have no problem loading up on a bunch of backup/blowout dudes. That means having a good amount of Tyrese Halliburton, Marvin Bagley, Chris Boucher, and Cory Joseph with some deep, deep GPP looks at Kyle Guy, Bjelica, and Robinson III. The prices are just too low given how much usage would open up with Fox out. 

If Fox and Holmes play, I don’t like this game. If Fox plays and Holmes sits, I have no problem taking a chance on Bagley and the cheaper bigs. If Holmes plays and Fox sits, I have no problem taking Joseph and the cheaper guards. Either way, though, I think there’s too much to question here, and too many people splitting work with too many people at too high a price.

Steph Curry QUESTIONABLE

I don’t like this game if Curry plays, flat out. It’s going to be overowned and I don’t trust GS to produce. They sure didn’t a couple days ago when barely anyone hit value, scoring 101 as a team. They should have attended Scoring 101 to learn how to produce. Steph Curry got 28 DKP in 35 min. Wiggins got 27.25 DKP in 34m. Oubre played only 25 minutes and got only 15 DKP. Dray Green got 23 DKP in 31 min. Wiseman played 18 minutes and got 17.5 DKP. 

We have to go all the way down to Eric Paschall, who had the highest usage on the team for this game and the most points (19). He wound up with 24.25 DKP in 20 minutes at 4400. He is the first person to hit 5x value and that’s all he did. This goes to show you what it’s like playing against the Clippers when healthy. 

If Curry plays, I don’t want to play anyone except in deeper GPPs, where I would have some Curry, as well as some cheap backup/blowout exposure to Damion Lee and Brad Wanamaker.

If Curry is out, I will have some decent exposure to Lee and Wanamaker in that order. 

On the other side of the ball, there was also only one Clipper to reach value – Serge Ibaka put up 35 DKP on a 5500 salary. This was partly due to the return of Marcus Morris, whose absence caused other player’s prices to rise – prices that will slowly correct. Still, Kawhi got 32.5 DKP.  PG13 got 42.5 DKP which isn’t bad, but he was 9k so he didn’t get to 5x. Everyone else was basically unplayable. Curry playing means this game stays closer, meaning I like Kawhi and PG13 more. But I still don’t love them on this big slate.

I expect the same thing this game. I will play Ibaka cause GS has been a mess against Centers. I will have some GPP exposure to PG13 and Kawhi. And some exposure to backup/blowout dudes. Still, this is a game I will wind up liking a lot less than the field, and I will own it as such. I mean, these teams played to a 108-101 finish 2 days ago. Pardon me for not believing Vegas that this one gets to 232.

LeBron and Davis QUESTIONABLE

With the Lakers playing on a back-to-back and both superstars nursing injuries, it is incredibly likely that one, if not both, LeBron and Davis will be rested tonight. There is a reason that this game is the only one without a Vegas total. In fact, it doesn’t even have a spread. They don’t know which means we probably won’t know for awhile.

What we do know is the Lakers are taking on a Bulls team that is playing at the 3rd fastest pace in the NBA (the Lakers themselves are down at 19th). We know the Bulls are adding the 6th most value to opposing teams (the Lakers are 20th). We also know that the Bulls can’t stop bigs. At all. They were a Lock Spot last season, and I am very close to calling that again. Especially with Lauri Markkanen still out. 

We also know that, if LeBron and/or Davis play, there is a much greater chance this game blows out, and the Lakers will be playing a much better team on both ends of the court. That means it would be less of a benefit to play not just LeBron and Davis, but also LaVine, Coby White, and any other expensive player on either side. 

So let’s talk strategy, broadly.

If Davis and/or LeBron play, I would be fine with locking in one of them, since their usage would skyrocket and they would be the one responsible for the game blowing out (should it even happen). I would also have a bunch of extra Schroder and Montrezl, which some extra Kuzma to boot, as those 3 players should get the biggest usage/production boosts (though it will be different depending on who is out – Schroder gets a LeBron absence boost and Montrezl/Kuzma benefit from a missing Brow). 

I would also tailor my Bulls to who misses. If LeBron misses, the guard/wing D gets worse. That means I’m a bigger fan of taking a GPP chance on Zach LaVine (who I do not love at 8600, though) or Otto Porter (who has been doing well since Lauri has been out, minus one game). If Davis misses, I am a bigger fan of taking Wendell Carter, who is coming off a 40 DKP game and would see a much easier matchup at only 5800. 

If LeBron and Davis are out, this game is going to be fine to stack. LaVine and White and Porter and Carter are all fine plays from Chicago (though I’d only pick 2 of them, max). For LA, I would look at Schroder, Montrezl, and Kuzma first, but also take a good look at (and have good ownership of) Alex Caruso and THT. Wes Matthews would be a deep, deep punt as would Markieff

If LeBron and Davis are in, this game should blow out quickly and I would only have exposure to the backup/blowout dudes. Meaning the guys like Kuzma and THT and Caruso.


if you use these a lot and they help you

or, better yet, if you use these and they help you win $$

please consider donating

i have massive medical bills due to my severe disability (CRPS). I have several expensive tests coming up and, quite possibly, a surgery. it costs a lot

i have multiple places you can help:

venmo: bathrobeDFS

cashapp: $bathrobeDFS

paypal: bathrobeDFS@gmail.com

patreon: patreon.com/bathrobeDFS

thank you all. I am so grateful for all of you. And even if you can’t do anything to help, I will keep working as hard as I can to make sure I help you.


Download the latest version of OptimalDFS in the Apple Store (currently iOS only).

Projections available on mobile phones with OptimalDFS app! Upgrade to premium for the ability to optimize 150 lineups and export lineups on your phone!