NBA playoff action is underway, and there is NBA DFS on DraftKings and FanDuel. Greg Ehrenberg looks at some NBA DFS Picks to build around for the Saturday, Sept. 15 slate.
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NBA DFS Picks: Values + Fades for Sept. 15
Value Pick: Ivica Zubac
DraftKings $4,800, FanDuel $4,700
The Clippers get smoked in the playoffs when Montrezl Harrell is on the court. With Harrell on the court, Los Angeles is getting outscored by 60 points in the playoffs, and they are outscoring opponents by 130 when he’s on the bench. Even though Doc Rivers says that plus-minus doesn’t mean anything, this is probably coach speak. The playing time speaks louder than words and Zubac played 30, 32 and 30 minutes in the last three games. He’s the priority play in the frontcourt for the Clippers and is a bit too cheap. For a while, I assumed Harrell would take his minutes back, but this no longer seems like the case. There isn’t much value for a center in the playoffs that can’t defend or shoot.
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Stud Pick: Kawhi Leonard
DraftKings $10,400, FanDuel $10,600
If the Clippers blow this series, the takes will rage on Twitter. I never gave the Nuggets a legitimate chance to get back into the series, and this was clearly a mistake. Even after Denver came back in Game 5, I thought it was a fluke. Then when Los Angeles was up 16 in Game 6, I started to look ahead to a Clippers – Lakers series. No matter what the situation is in Game 7, I won’t count Denver out.
I assume the Clippers and Doc Rivers will share a similar sentiment that I do. For this reason, I expect a heavy workload for Leonard. He should play over 40 minutes regardless of the score. Even if the Clippers get up big, they can’t afford to play cautiously with Leonard’s workload given how the last couple of games went. In the last four games of the series, he’s averaging 58.5 DraftKings points, making him my favorite option to pay up for on the slate. Leonard is the best fantasy producer on the slate, and the concerns about his playing time from the regular season no longer exist.
Contrarian Pick: Lou Williams
DraftKings $5,500, FanDuel $5,500
Williams is arguably the highest-variance player in all of NBA DFS. Per dollar, he rarely rates out well as a play because of the difference between his upside and his downside. The average result for Williams isn’t great and only once every five games or so that we his ceiling. When he does hit that ceiling, it generally means he breaks the slate. Williams scored at least 40 DraftKings point 13 times in the regular season, topping out at 60.5 DraftKings points. There isn’t any player in this price range that can match that sort of upside. If playing multiple lineups, Williams is worth getting a couple shares of.
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