We’ve got ourselves another day of NBA preseason DFS with five games at our fingertips, ones that will hopefully have a few less question marks than the ones we encountered yesterday. Thankfully, in my first NBA DFS Picks, Preseason Spotlight article we can hit big on a few guys like Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Karl-Anthony Towns who proved to be necessary pieces (while that selfish jerk Luka Doncic was held out to make his debut today). Sometimes that’s all it takes in this volatile game type of NBA preseason DFS. And for now let’s get back on the grind what what I see for tonight’s Spotlight Players on this interesting five game slate, including the return of our reigning MVP in Giannis Antetokounmpo. Let’s dig into some top NBA DFS Picks for your fantasy basketball lineups on DraftKings and FanDuel
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NBA Preseason DFS Picks: October 9th
Coach Mike Budenholzer is expected to ramp up his players’ minutes as the preseason goes on. But regular players hit a high of 24 minutes in their preseason opener and that’s enough of a load to take a look at Giannis Antetokounmpo. Antetokounmpo missed Milwaukee’s preseason opener versus Chicago but last year, he debuted to 22 minutes with 19 points and 13 assists. Against a Jazz team who’ll be down Rudy Gobert and should be significantly worse at the rim with no Derrick Favors any more, this is a spot for Giannis to show off a bit for the home crowd, even if he sees just in the neighborhood of 20 minutes.
With a litany of key Heat players out that include Jimmy Butler, Goran Dragic and Justise Winslow on a strange preseason back-to-back, I think this is a compelling spot for the rookie Tyler Herro after a very hot debut. Herro put up 13 shots in 24 minutes yesterday and could see a decent bit of additional opportunity with all of these ball dominant players out. Herro’s stepback jumper game was filthy in his debut and his three boards and three assists as well as a block and a steal show an ability to contribute in more categories than it may have seemed, based on his draft profile.
It’s certainly possible guys like Meyers Leonard or Bam Adebayo seize more usage with the absences and a pivot of exposure to a similar player in Dion Waiters is logical after Herro’s strong first game. But Herro looked really good last night and Charlotte should not be able to limit much.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s article before we knew he would sit, Luka Doncic played 30 minutes in his preseason debut in 2018 versus the Beijing Ducks as well his first NBA preseason DFS tilt against the Philadelphia 76ers. Doncic may not quite hit that many minutes and the matchup is less ideal than yesterday’s versus Oklahoma City with Detroit a much slower-paced team. But Doncic is a star and key contributor to this offense who should see enough work to create value for himself as well as some assist opportunities to new teammate Kristaps Porzingis and that makes him a compelling play. After nearly 20% of players rostered him despite him not playing last night, Luka may be less owned than he should be as well.
Zion Williamson will play tonight after he hit 27 minutes in his debut and led the Pelicans in shot attempts as he notched 16 points with seven boards and a surprising three assists and three steals. Now he faces a Bulls team who doesn’t have much in the way of worrisome bigs in a game that should also have pace comparable to that preseason debut versus Atlanta. You’re paying a bit of a premium for Zion given his name value but the Bulls were a weak rebounding team last year and Zion seems predisposed to be heavily involved despite a deep New Orleans squad. He may end up as chalk but he’ll be fun chalk with NBA preseason DFS upside.
Reports out of Detroit are that no key player is likely to see more than 22 minutes but I still think that’s a spot that works for Andre Drummond. In lineups where I don’t have him, some Christian Wood exposure would be in order given how minutes could shake out and go his way. But Drummond faces a Mavericks team without any big who should be unable to keep Drummond off the glass and they shot at a poor 44.7% clip last year. The addition of Porzingis and some improvement for Luka Doncic will help but Drummond should have a decent floor with a chance at tapping into a ceiling of note. Drummond at 20 minutes of court time is more than enough time for a double-double in the right matchup and I find it hard to believe Dallas has an answer for him currently in their rotation.